Monday, 16 May 2011

As Mattie says – claws on my paws

Posted in Nailin' It at 6:23 pm by betherino

Some of my recent self-manicures:

Dotty French

I really love my dotting tool. I don’t know how I survived for so long without it. I’m starting to realize what a rip-off nail salons are – to charge so much to do something so simple! I’m not sure I can ever go back to a regular plain ol’ manicure anymore, now that I have the means to pretty up a simple manicure all by myself. This was a dotty take on a French manicure – base is OPI Siberian Sky, dots are in OPI Alpine Snow, which is probably the best investment ever.

Flower power

Flowers on EVERY NAIL. Awesome flower power! I’m getting pretty good at doing them left-handed, too. Waiting for the day I am effectively ambidextrous. Heh heh. This one is two coats of OPI No Spain No Gain, with a single top coat of OPI Houston We Have A Purple, which has a gel or sorbet texture and therefore takes a lot of coats to look good on its own. Similar colors but different textures, and I really like them together. The flower petals are OPI Alpine Snow and the centers are OPI Second Honeymoon, the Barbie pink from my previous manicure post.

Glitter gradient

This is sheer awesomeness. Serene did one of these at the salon awhile back, though much less blingy; to get some inspiration and know-how, I Googled it and found a post by someone who also buys her polishes from Melva at NailVibe. Her blog gave me a lot of inspiration – I’m going to try her lace tips manicure next!

I did my tips in a metallic red by OPI – I don’t know what color it is because it’s in a mini sample bottle and it doesn’t have a name label. The copper bling is a pa polish called Lame Grande AA30 (I’m assuming they mean lamé), and the sheer glimmery polish is pa Lame Petite A125. I think Grande and Petite refer to the amount of glitter in the polish. I just bought another pa Lame Grande polish, AA36 – it’s not as black as it looks; rather it’s a clear polish with silver glitter and round pink shimmer dots. I’m all into glitter love these days – reliving my JC days where everything was glitter and rainbow spectra! Sounds a bit like 80’s disco, but much better.

I got the pa polishes from a pushcart in Junction 8, in front of G2000 on the second floor. They’ve got a great range of pa polish and nail stickers. I don’t get my OPI polishes from there because they cost an astronomical $22 (as compared to $10.90 and above on NailVibe) but since NailVibe doesn’t carry pa polish, I’m happy to pay $8.90 for them at the pushcart. I guess rent pushes up the price of the OPI polishes there.

I’m going to be ordering from NailVibe soon – Seche Vite topcoat amongst some other new colors – so if you’re interested in collating orders, let me know :)

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Thursday, 14 Apr 2011

Pretty in pink

Posted in Nailin' It at 1:50 pm by betherino

I’ve done my nails a couple of times since my last manicure post but my iPhone camera isn’t cooperating :(((( for some reason it won’t focus on close objects anymore. I did a bright blue with silver streaks last week – my first attempt at cool colors – and I quite liked it! The only photo I have is fuzzy though :(

This week I went back to the tried and true diagonal French that I like so very much; this time with my new OPI Second Honeymoon, Alpine Snow tips and a lashing of Pearl of Wisdom over, just to give it a pearly sheen. I didn’t really like how very Barbie pink OPI’s Second Honeymoon was – a little too plasticky, a little too bubblegum. I used three coats because of how sheer these light colors are; put on the diagonal tips and then covered everything with a thin coat of Pearl of Wisdom just to make it a little more interesting! Lined it with my usual nail art glitter pen.

OPI Second Honeymoon, Alpine Snow, and Pearl of Wisdom

Added little heart stickers to the pink part of the nail on a couple of fingers, just to amp up the sweetheart look. It was a little odd at first. Now I’m getting used to the pink though; after about a week it doesn’t seem so jarring anymore. Shell did mention that it seems too girly for me (what’s she trying to say? :D) and I sort of agreed but now after getting used to it, it’s a nice change from my usual.

Friday, 25 Feb 2011

Blushing pink

Posted in Nailin' It at 5:34 pm by betherino

Pantone’s color of the year is honeysuckle, in celebration of all things pink. After some deliberation, I’ve decided I quite like it.

Pantone Honeysuckle

I’m not much of a pink girl myself, but occasionally I like to indulge my girly side, and so this week my nails are bright and joyous purply-pink. I’d just gotten my package of new polishes from Nail Vibe, and I wanted to try out all my new toys! I thought I’d go with the diagonal French tips again, this time in different colors.

OPI Houston we have a purple and OPI Pearls of wisdom

The base is OPI Houston We Have a Purple, from their Texas collection. Very apt for me since we’re going to watch Jeff Bridges in True Grit later on. It looks red in the picture but it’s really more of a purply-pink. When I first stroked on the polish, I was surprised at how thin and watery it was. The first coat was really translucent and I ended up putting three coats on to get a more opaque effect. I thought at first maybe there was something wrong with the polish but according to OPI, this is the “sorbet” effect it’s trying to achieve. Now, after a day of looking at my nails, I’ve decided I really like it after all! The slight translucency gives the polish a candy jelly look. The color is vibrant and shiny and glossy, and the polish dries fast so it’s easy to get three coats on. I probably should have let it dry even more, because I’ve got a few teeny bubbles in the polish, but they’re small and few enough that it doesn’t bother me much. I was looking for a deeper purple though, and I realized that the one I’m looking for is OPI No Spain No Gain. I’ll be buying that next!

OPI Houston We Have A Purple OPI Pearl of Wisdom

The tips are done in OPI Pearl of Wisdom, from the Hong Kong collection. It’s a beautiful sheer opalescent shimmer with hints of pink and gold in it. It looks really pink on my nails and I’m not sure but I think it’s because the bottom coat of Houston We Have A Purple is showing through. The color is gorgeous though – looks good layered on brownish shades as well.

BNB-Glitter

I outlined the tips in BNB nail art glitter in gold; I’ve taken the picture from Nail Vibe because I can’t find it anywhere else on the Net. It’s a very thin brush that’s beautifully easy to draw with, even with my left hand. The gold flecks are crazy dense so the color looks fabulous. I have the silver one as well, and I really love the picture in Nail Vibe where Melva drew on silver tips on a dark blue base. I’m not yet adventurous enough to try greens and blues on my fingers but after seeing my friend’s OPI Jade Is The New Black, I must say I’m terribly terribly tempted!

Next week I’ll either be testing my new dotting tool or my China Glaze crackle polish!

Thursday, 17 Feb 2011

Nailin’ it: Diagonal French manicure

Posted in Nailin' It at 11:41 am by betherino

Because I’m terribly self-indulgent and am rather proud of the fact that I can pull off a not-too-shabby self-manicure, I’m going to feature my fingers whenever I do something interesting with them. Like this week’s diagonal French manicure!

Diagonal French manicure

My nails chip really easily so it’s rare that I get all of them long at the same time. Too often my nails suffer from “onion peeling” where the top layer peels away; it gets weakened and thin and I end up cutting them short in frustration to start from scratch (pun not intended). I think also because I’m always on the computer or on my iPhone, my nails get stressed as well and end up breaking. This is one of those rare times that all my nails have remained intact!

NailTek Intensive Therapy TheFaceShop top coat

To keep my nails strong, I use NailTek II: Intensive Therapy for Soft, Peeling Nails as a basecoat. My OPI top coat has gotten thick and sludgy, resulting in blobby, bubbly nails; so I’ve just gone and bought TheFaceShop’s top coat, which cost me a grand total of $2.50 and works just as well, I think.

OPI Get Me To The Taj On Time OPI Alpine Snow

This week I wanted to go back to a classic French color on my nails after doing a dark glitter French last week, but at the same time I got tired of the same old same old lines. So I decided to try a diagonal tip instead, using double coats of my favorite nude pink base, OPI Get Me To The Taj On Time (from the India collection) with classic OPI Alpine Snow tips.

I started midway through the nail and slanted up to the very edge. I was quite pleased with the result but something seemed to be lacking – it just seemed a tad plain. So I Googled “diagonal manicure” just to look for some inspiration, and found this picture:

Diagonal French

The gold stripe outlining the tip seemed perfect. That’s what it was lacking! The gold line would also be perfect for hiding the irregularities in the white tips (self-manicures are never perfect). But I didn’t have the gold glitter pen, so I made do with what I had – silver glitter SL211 from TheFaceShop.

The Face Shop SL211

I simply painted over the white tips to give a little silver glitter sheen to them and make it a little more interesting. It wasn’t exactly what I wanted, but close enough!

I get all my nail polish equipment from Nail Vibe. I’ve just sent in for another batch of polish and this time I’m going to get my hands on those gold and silver polish pens to do outlines with! Excitement.