Thursday, March 28, 2013

manicure march day 29 - birthday manicure by spellbound nails

Hello everyone! I'm Ashley from over at Spellbound Nails. I'm really excited to be doing a guest post for Jess, especially one for her birthday!! What else could I possibly do but birthday nail art? With a little input from the birthday girl herself, I came up with two birthday cake inspired designs.

The first is a pink nail textured to look like a soft and crumbly birthday cake with white 'frosting' drips and bright pink sprinkles. This look was created with a base of Sinful Colors Beautiful Girl. For the texture, I first mixed a little bit of Sally Hansen Fuchsia Power with Beautiful Girl and dabbed this mixture lightly over my nails with an eyeshadow applicator. To create the lighter texture I used a bit of Sally Hansen Pink Blink mixed with Beautiful Girl. The drips were done with a nail art brush and LA Colors White. The sprinkles are Fuchsia Power and were dotted on with a medium dotting tool using varying pressures to create larger and smaller dots. Using top coat on the 'cake' will ruin the texture. If you're anything like me though you'll want the frosting to be shiny; to do this I used my nail art brush to carefully paint top coat over the drips.

This is definitely a mani that can be worn all party long. And they will be sure to get many an ooh and an ahh from your guests.

The second mani is one you know won't last all party long, but you'll certainly enjoy the looks of shock on your friend's faces when they see them! The birthday cake texture of these nails was done the same as the first mani. However, instead of adding drips I painted the very tips of my nails in a wavy pattern with top coat. While the tips were still wet I dipped them into actual cake decorating sprinkles. You'll need to work quickly and push any sprinkles hanging over your nails back; you might even have to remove some if they won't fit. Then lightly press the sprinkles down onto your nails. This will make them bond better, giving you longer wear, as the top coat dries.

I had so much fun creating these nails, and I hope you enjoyed them just as much! :)

Saturday, March 23, 2013

manicure march day 24 - l'amour josie guest post

Fuchsia Glitter - £3.89

When the oh so lovely Jess asked me to take part in Manicure March (happy birthday month Jess!), I got excited. There's not much I love more than a nice nail polish, and my readers are regularly over exposed to glitter and nude nails. Being able to share two of my favourite things with you was an opportunity I couldn't turn down!

When I was deciding what to post about, I chose to go for one of my most neglected polishes - Chanel's Frenzy - alongside a newbie, Boogie Nights. Frenzy created quite the stir in 2012, and after receiving it for my birthday I wore it a couple of times, liked it, and then lost it in my sea of neutral polishes. After digging it out, I paired it with Boogie Nights, and was really pleased with the results. I've always got on well with Models Own polishes, and Boogie Nights is no exception. Released as part of the MirrorBall collection last year, this top coat packs a glittery punch against the simplicity of Frenzy.

For those who don't fancy shelling out a fiver for a nail polish that they'll most likely only wear on one finger, I decided to get a bit crafty and come up with a budget alternative. I already had this craft store glitter hanging around from my card making phase, so I poured it on to a clear top coat and managed to create a fuschia statement nail for a purse friendly price.

So there we have it. An every day nail polish with a glittery twist. Are you a fan of statement nails, or do you like to leave your neutrals just like that - neutral?

Thursday, March 14, 2013

manicure march day 14 - giveaway!!!!!!!

I couldn't do this special month with so many lovely ladies and not do a giveaway :) so I am getting together with the lovely ladies from Spellbound Nails, Love Life Lacquer, My Vickilicious Life and XOXO Alexis to offer you ad spaces to all out blogs and a little nail art set to get those of you inspired by our posts started :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

manicure march day 15 - my vickilicious life guest post

Hey there!  I'm a fellow March baby like the lovely Jessica.  In fact, as of March 28th I will be 30 years old! This is rather terrifying! LOL ... I mean really, when did I get so old?! HAHA! Anyways ... I've been been getting my nails done for as long as I can remember ... in the 7th grade I got my first set of tips for my confirmation, and I've pretty much been nail-obsessed ever since!  Although these days I have traded in my super-long tips (and I do mean LONG ... I tried to find old pictures but I couldn't) for natural manicures, I still am a firm believer in always having your nails looking pretty!

I tend to not repeat nail colors often.  I love going into the salon and getting something new and exciting on my nails each time! I have wore a lot of nail polishes in my lifetime ... all brands, all colors, all trends ... From airbrush to krackle to glitter to magnetic ... I've tried almost everything.  There is only one trend I will not ever get into and that's the 'stiletto' nail look.  Other then that? Everything is pretty much fair game.

There are, however, a handful or so colors that have become my absolute favorites and I do wear them quite often.  They have become staples in my nail wardrobe, and my go-to colors if nothing else is catching my eye:

OPI: Russian Navy
Source: via Vicki on Pinterest

Essie: Wicked

Source: via Vicki on Pinterest

Essie:  Glamour Purse

Source: via Vicki on Pinterest
Essie:  Lady Godiva

Source: via Vicki on Pinterest
Essie:  Chinchilly

Source: via Vicki on Pinterest

Essie:  Soulmate

Source: via Vicki on Pinterest

My nail obsession has even made its way over to my blog! The Nail Files (#thenailfiles) is a weekly linkup I co-host where every Friday we all link-up our latest manicures, favorite nail polish colors, colors we are lusting over, trends, basically anything nail/manicure related!!!

Thanks Jess for letting me take over your blog today :

manicure march day 13 - angular French tips

You have got to love Pinterest!!! Thanks to that little baby for today's inspiration. I love the look of French manicures but for me they are the most fiddlesticks things to do, probably because I have short nail beds and long tips so painting the white colour on my tips gives my nails an odd look. But this one seems to have solved all my problems as the bases colour completely conceals the actual look of the nail. For this look all I did was paint my whole nail in my all time favourite neutral polish, nails inc porchester square, then uses a black paint in the tips but on an angle coming at it on the side to achieve this kind of inverted triangular take on the classic French manicure :)

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

manicure march day 12 - gemstones

bit of a rushed post today i am afraid. its just one of those days where you think you have everything sorted and mapped out and then what feels like thirty million other things come up as well so rush rush rush today. anyway i wanted to include a nail design using a fab little product i picked up from amazon the other week. the npw 3 in 1 nail art pen in love is gorgeous, it comes with 2 pens that contain little gems, my ones are in pale pink and red, and nail art pens that can be applied by a brush to paint the nail or using the pen tip for nail art. here i used the pink pen out of my love set and applied to shimmering pink champagne polish all over the nail adding the pale pink gems down the center for a bit of sparkle. i love this look, granted it didn't last very long as delicate things don't tend to when looking after children, but they looked fab while they did :D i can't wait to play with the red pen in the set now!

manicure march day 11 - cloud nail art

today's post is inspired by a fab tutorial i watched on youtube over the weekend by the lovely and amazing nail artist missjenfabulous. this cloud nail art was so simple thanks to her fab instructions. to create this look i first painted essie mint candy apple, warning lots of essie polishes featured in this post, all over the nail as my base colour. i decided to use all pastel colours for this design as they looked great sat next to each other on my shelf so i thought they would look even better on the nails together :) then using essie lilacism, a new favourite, i painted 3 lines starting just below the cuticle and going further towards the end of the nail with each one. then using essie madison ave-hue i repeated the step starting closer to the middle of the nail to create the pastel gradient cloud effect :) i love the look of these nails, i got to use loads of lovely colours and create simple to do fab to look at nail art :D

manicure march day 10 - nail polish collection reds and purples

one of the things i wanted to do within this month was to share my ever growing nail polish collection. i thought about doing this all in one post but it would have been far too long so instead i am taking a couple of days within manicure march to show you my favourites. today im tackling the reds and purples.

these are probably the shades i wear most on my nails, as you have heard me say before i love a dark nail. first up the reds...

thumb - china glaze merry berry
index finger - essie raspberry
middle finger - OPI you only live twice
ring finger - china glaze red satin
pinky - essie jelly apple

and my over love purples...

thumb - sinful colors winterberry
index finger - essie recessionista
middle finger - revlon colorstay bold sangria
ring finger - OPI honk if you love opi
pinky - essie devil's advocate

i love all of these as the formulas are great, yes i am a big essie lover, and the colours are gorgeous but my favourites would have to be china glaze merry berry, a deep raspberry red, and essie devil's advocate, the deepest darkest purple it looks almost black :) what is your favourite red/purple nail polish?

Friday, March 8, 2013

manicure march day 9 - outline manicure

Today I have my new favorite kind of manicure, one that is really simple but looks amazing and looks like it took forever when it only takes two coats. The outline manicure was first seen on the Chanel runway at their haute couture show last year. Here artists reversed the classic French manicure where the tip contrasts the base of the nail by having the outline of the base contrast with the centre of the nail.

I have seen some of my favorite bloggers and youtubers sporting this manicure but by far my favorite was lily from what I heart today. Her take of this new look was metallic and looks sensational. Using her nails for inspiration I used a black nail polish as the base with my beloved Essie penny talk, a gorgeous opaque rose gold shade, for the centre colour. I love the look of this as it is so simple but looks very classy yet different. All I had to do after painting my base black colour, sinful colours black on black, was paint penny talk in the shape shape but smaller, leaving an outline around the edge to let the black peep through.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

manicure march day 8 - caviar nails

This might the most impractical manicure ever but it's just so pretty I couldn't resist. When I did my swap with the lovely Josie from l'amour Josie I asked for some of the MUA caviar beads as to be honest they were the cheapest I had seen them and the range is based on star signs which I thought was really cute. I got Gemini and libra, the first is the gorgeous pink beads with a little purple and pale blue thrown into the mix while libra is the black beads with turquoise sprinkled through.

The manicure itself was actually a lot simpler than I thought it was going to be. I painted the nails in the black and soft pink shades as a base, then after they had dried applied a second coat. As soon as I had finished I poured on the beads and pressed down slightly to make sure they stuck to the polish. This was the messy bit on the first nail they went absolutely everywhere so for the next nails I poured over a huge bowl to catch them all. I love the look of this manicure, it's so quirky and enough it won't last very long at all I think it's so so cute :)

Extra bit of news!!! I am now on instagram!!! I have only had it a week and am loving it already, my name is @lilywhiteenglishrose if you would like to follow:)

manicure march day 7 - Essie spring 2013 collection

You all know by know that I am a sucker for Essie nail polishes, I don't know what it is about them...well actually I do lol it's the cute little bottles, the ridiculous amount of gorgeous colours and their even cuter names. So it's safe to say that when I hear about a new collection being released I read the blog posts and hunt through Pinterest for swatches for ages.

Their latest collection is just as lovely with cute pastel shades to take us into spring. The spring collection is all based around founder Essie Weingarten's love of traveling with the names giving little nods to certain cities; bond with whomever for London and avenue maintain for Paris. The colours themselves are gorgeous featuring a smokey blues, lavender and the most gorgeous in my opinion a vibrant soft pink. I was very restrained however and only picked up one shade from the new collection as the other colours already had a counterpart in my collection.

Madison ave-hue is a creamy pink colour that is bright on the nails but still has a pastel edge to it. It also contains tiny silver shimmers which catch the light beautifully and give this already lovely shade something special. As with all of the Essie polishes this applied opaque in just 2 coats and lasted so so well on my nails. This colour will be gorgeous all through the coming spring and into summer if we ever get any sun here in Seattle, the rain has descended unfortunately this week :( but with this one my nails I just can't help being in a happy mood :)

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

manicure march day 6 - pastel ombré

Six days in and I have got to say I am loving manicure march so far!! Thank you all for you lovely comments and if you would like me to try any design do let me know as the main thing that I can't get enough of right now is experimenting. A lot of these designs, like yesterday's chevrons, I have never tried and although some are tricky and some didn't turn out as well as I would have liked getting to just play around with new ideas and looks is great :)

So for today going along with this theme I thought I would try my hand at ombré as for the last year it seems to be a style that has been done in so many different areas. I love ombré nails and especially ombré hair! I am actually thinking about getting mine ombré but at the moment am a little concerned about the ends being too blonde because as you can see I have really dark hair, any advice please please let me know in the comments :)

So ombré nails turned out to be really fun especially when I was creating this little rainbow of colours. I love mixed pastels, particularly a mint green and baby pink combo, so I decided to mix nearly all of the ones I owned lol. The actual application was a little messy but I did use the Pinterest approved trick of putting Vaseline everywhere I didn't want to get polish to stop it from sticking to my skin. So after covering my hands I simply used a small sponge and painting the two polishes side by side and dabbed the colour over the nail. Personally I was really concerned with having the middles blend so for me this took a couple of coats but if you are a dab hand at this technique or just want a sheer ombré I'm sure one coat would do :) the only slightly negative thing I found was that the surface was a little bumpy because of the sponge even after I used my top coat so next time I think I will use a small sponge to stop this.

Polishes used:
Sinful colours starfish
Essie lilacism
Essie bikini so teeny
Essie turquoise and Caicos
Essie mint candy apple
Sinful colours snow me white
Rimmel base coat top coat pro

Monday, March 4, 2013

manicure march day 5 - rubber band mani by lalalists

Hello everyone. My name is Rachel and I blog over at lala Lists. Today I am here to share a tutorial I did a few months ago that came out great. I saw this on Pinterest a while ago and thought it was worth a try. It is super easy and ads great flair to a simple manicure!

Rubber Band French Manicure
Gather your top/bottom coats, nail and tip colors and a rubber band.
Do a layer of base coat. I am a Seche Vite nut and I love their base coat.
Do your base nail color. Won this great nude in a giveaway recently. Wait for it to dry
Then do a layer of top coat. Wait at least 10 mins to be sure it is 100% dry
Wrap the rubber band around the tip of your nail and run the polish over it.
Experiment! Different width bands might work better.
Wait for the glitter to dry before using another 2-3 layers of top coat.
Enjoy your fabulous and easy nails!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

manicure march day 4 - chevron nails

I have been seeing chevrons everywhere recently especially on Pinterest, got to love that site, they have popped up on clothing, walls and nails and after seeing the pattern morning, noon and night it seemed only right that it make an appearance here somewhere in manicure march. Since this pattern is so bold I decided just to go with it and use equally bold colours. The base is a favorite of mine from last year Essie bikini so teeny with the pattern in revolt color stay in indigo night. I found it easier to use the darker colour to create the pattern as after trying it the other way round it took so many coats for the lovely pastel shade to cover the intense blue. 

To create this look I cut out the chevron pattern using tiny nail scissors out of tape and laid the tape on my completely dried nail, to avoid pulling any of the base colour off. Then I added the second coat of the brighter blue and peeled the tape off straight away. For me this worked better than letting the polish dried as it tended to get stuck. Finally I added a top coat, rimmel base coat top coat pro, to seal in the design. I love this look, it is definitely one of the more stand out patterns I have made for manicure march but I am loving it for both the pattern and the colours I used :)

Saturday, March 2, 2013

manicure march day 3 - glitter accent nails

Just a quickie one today as I feel like I have a million things to do and not enough hours to get it done, ever had one of those days? This look is what I go for when I want to jazz up my manicure and just by adding glitter to a couple of random nails I think it totally does. For the first manicure I used Essie mango bango, a gorgeous bright coral orange shade, and then opi's goldeneye from the James Bond collection to spice it up. I love this glitter polish from opi, it's a clear nail polish that has so much glitter that is so finely milled that the result is a pure glitter nail with no spaces. The second manicure is Essie mojito madness with china glaze glitter all the way on the accent nails. This glitter is amazing, I wore it on New Year's Eve on every nail and love it!! It's a multicolored glitter that dries matte so it's the ultimate pure glitter nail :)

Friday, March 1, 2013

manicure march day 2 - vintage floral nails

I love florals in any form but had never had or tried floral nails and since I have renamed this month manicure march I thought it was about time I changed that :) this design took a lot longer than some of my others as there were so many layers and waiting for each bit to try without touching or smudging anything was a pain but for me the end result was well worth it, so pretty :)

After applying my usual base coat, rimmel base coat top coat pro, I painted on my base colour. Nails inc porchester square is a nude beige with a slight hint of purple that works great for the vintage vibe i was going for. I then took Essie island hopping, a dusty pink, and using the biggest dotting tool I had put a couple of dots on each nail. Then using a smaller dotting tool I adding a dot in the middle of each circle in Essie recessionista, a gorgeous magenta, and small irregular lines around the edges for petals. I used Essie mojito madness, a bright green with a pastel side in just one coat, for the little leaves and Essie lilacism, very pale lavender, for the tiny dots to finish the look. After a quick swipe of my top coat my vintage floral nails were done :) 

Although this was a little fiddly with the dotting tools and I sometimes found my nails to be too small to put all the detail I wanted on there I love the look of these nails, the muted colours make this great for everyday while the flowers add that little something special.