Open With Me: June Glam Bag!

Hey Beauties!

I’m on time with this one! =O.  Shock and awe… [She says when she writes the post in June, but then doesn’t post it until September… =S]  I filmed the video for this the day that it showed up on my doorstep =).

It is edited and ready to go up as soon as I finish this blog post!

So let’s get right into it.  Here are the goodies that came in my June Glam Bag:

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Such a cute bag!  Leopard print with a neon yellow zipper (and inside!).  They changed the location of the zipper this time, which I kind of like. It makes it seem more like a functional bag =)  The theme is “On The Wild Side”, and the card is really pretty.

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And here are all of the items inside.  I’m pretty sure that all 5 items are full sized this month!  Amazing! =D

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First up is an item that I have wanted for ages.  This is NYX’s cream blush in “Boho Chic”.  It is a very creamy formula that glides on smoothly.  It is a bit shiny, but putting a setting powder or a powder blush overtop would fix that problem and make it last.  This is full size and retails for $6.  The discount for NYX is up to 40% off!

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Here you can see the swatches.  Top is a solid swatch with just one stroke, and below is a blended out swatch.  You can see that it is a really beautiful blush colour that blends out to a natural glow.  It isn’t the most pigmented blush, but I could see myself using this and then topping it with Physicians Formula Happy Booster Blush in “Warm”, which is my favourite powder blush for a really natural look.

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Next up is an item from a brand that I have never heard of before called StarLooks.  This is a lip liner in the colour “Tickle Me Pink”.  When I swatched it the formula felt amazing.  It just glided right onto my skin, soft as could be.  I didn’t really test the staying power though, but it blends nicely and seems to set fairly quickly.

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The colour is perfect as far as I’m concerned!  A soft pink that I think will go well with any lipstick or lipgloss and look natural but gorgeous.  This is full size (2.4g) and retails for $12.  The discount code provides 35% off any order from their website.

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This is a brow highlight pencil from Chella in the colour “Ivory Lace”.  It is a fairly good size, but I am not sure if it is full size.  It seems to be almost like a light concealer pencil, meaning there is no shimmer in the formula.  It is meant to highlight simply by lightening the colour under the brow or the inner corners of the eyes, making it a very natural looking product!

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The pencil is very creamy, and would not tug at all when using it on the eyes.  It blends out nicely and gives just a subtle highlight.  This is the lightest of the three colours available, and it retails for $18.  The discount for Chella is 20% off.

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Now this is a product that I am really excited for!  I have never in my life worn any type of false lashes.  I bought some singles to use at my wedding, but never had time to practice with them, so I never wound up using them.  These are cruelty free lashes that came with a little tube of glue.  They are definitely plastic, but they still feel really soft.  I will have a review up for you when I try them out!  Maybe for a wedding that I am attending this summer =).  I have never heard of the brand J.cat Beauty before.  These retail for $3.99 a set.

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Lastly, this is another product from J.cat Beauty.  This is the Sparkling Cream Palette in the colour “Volta”.  I figured this must be like the NYX cream glitter palettes, which I have always admired from afar, but never purchased because I don’t wear glitter that often.  I was assuming that these colours would be a creamy base and the glitter would be suspended in it, making it easy to use as an eyeshadow or eyeliner.  However, when I swatched the products they proved to be more of a loose glitter that is just held in the palette by the cream.  Below you can see the swatches.

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I would use this more like my loose glitter from Lit, using some sort of glitter base or glue and then packing this on top.  I think it will also work over a cream liner.  The fallout seems to be crazy, as it typical with glitter, so be careful!  These retail for $4.49 and are available in 8 colours.  It seems like all of the products are cruelty free, lead free and hypoallergenic, which is great!

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Here’s everything I could swatch from the bag!  Top –> Bottom: Lip Liner, Glitter, Highlighter, Blush.

Did you get the Ipsy Glam Bag this month?  What did you get in your bag??

xoxo

NOTD: Geometric Orange

Hey Beauties!

It has been a long time since I have posted a nail of the day post.  I tried out a little bit of free-hand geometric designs to go along with my bright summer colour.  Let me know what you think!

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These are the various tools that I needed to do this manicure:  (The Orly top coat should be Seche Clear base coat… oops!)  Sally Hansen “Poppy”, China Glaze “White On White”, Pop Beauty (no name as far as I know), and Butter London “P.D. Quick Topcoat”.

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Here’s a better view of the brushes that I used.  These are just cheap synthetic nail brushes that I bought on eBay.  A long, skinny striping brush to make the initial lines; and a short flat topped brush as well as a short angle brush to fill in the black and white squares.

Here is the result!  Please excuse that the geometric shapes aren’t all perfect like most of the photos that I see on Instagram…  this was my first go, and being all artistic and good at drawing isn’t my strong point!

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I hope you like this design!  I was originally going to do my ring and middle fingers with the patterns, instead of the index and ring fingers.  What do you think?  Would you have liked that better?  I think I would have.  Oh well, next time!

This manicure is actually coming off right after I post this.  It’s starting to chip =(.  But it wore for about 4 days very well!

xoxo

 

Favourite Spring Polish 2013!

Hey Beauties!

I am so sorry for my absence lately, there has been a lot going on in my personal life the past couple of weeks, and things have just been crazy.  I have had the corresponding video up for this post for a while now, but if you haven’t seen it be sure to  check it out!

In this post I am going to give you a quick overview of all of my favourite nail polishes for spring!  Who doesn’t love a good spring mani? =)

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Here is my wonderful little nail wheel, with swatches of all the colours.  See one (or a few!) that you like?  Keep reading to find out what they are!

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First up is an OPI topcoat called “Pirouette My Whistle” from the NYC Ballet collection.  I am in love with this polish for all seasons really, but I think it really works well for spring because of how light and delicate it is.  It is a clear base with a lot of very tiny silver glitter, mixed in with small pearlescent hexagonal glitter.  It looks beautiful no matter what colour you put it over, whether it is a soft nude or a deep vampy polish.

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This one I had to throw in because I just got it in my most recent Ipsy Glam Bag, and it is stunning!  This is  “Neely” from Zoya.  It is a true milky, minty green.  Right on trend!  I used this in a gradient that I tried out on my nails here.

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L – Essie “Mint Candy Apple” R – Zoya “Neely”

Here is a quick comparison of two  “Mint” nail polishes.  You can see here that Mint Candy Apple is really more of a robin’s egg blue than a mint green.

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That brings me to my next favourite, Mint Candy Apple!  This is a beautiful soft blue creme polish.  It’s not the green colour that I thought it would be when I bought it.  I had heard so much about it last spring on YouTube that I figured it must be the perfect polish!  I do still love it though, just as a blue instead of a green.  Here it is as the main colour in a chevron manicure.

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I had to show this little combo, because who doesn’t love a fresh, clean french manicure?  The little mini is from Essie’s wedding collection last spring, and it is called “Made to Honour”.  It is a beautiful pink and I love using it for a french mani.  The white polish is “Pointe Blanc” from Orly’s french manicure line.  It has a long skinny brush that makes it really easy to get a nice clean, crisp line along your tips without guides.

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I was behind the game on this polish too.  This is another one that I had heard about all over YouTube and on beauty blogs everywhere.  It is the rose gold colour that has been so popular for the last year!  Orly “Rage” is a metallic rose gold polish that is just stunning.  If I can wear it, then I am sure it will go with any skin tone.  It is a nice neutral that provides just a little bit more “oomph” to your mani =), as seen here!

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Now for a bright one!  This is a really beautiful orangey coral.  My camera had a tough time getting the colour accurate here, and it looks a bit more neon than it actually is in real life.  I would say that it is somewhere between a pastel and a neon.  It has a bit more punch than your typical pastel, but is much softer than a typical neon.  This is Essie’s “Tart Deco”, and I think it is pretty much perfect.  See it in a mani here!

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This little mini is OPIs “Pedal Faster Suzi” from the Holland Collection.  It is a semi-sheer pale pink polish with silver micro-glitter.  I think this one is great when you need (or want) a subtle manicure, but you don’t want it to be boring.  I used this as the base colour for a houndstooth mani that you can see here!

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This one is just as bright in person as it looks here!  OPI’s “Kiss My On My Tulips” is also from the Holland Collection last spring.  It is one of my favourite bright pinks, and it has a slightly cool undertone.  I love buying these little minis, because you get to try many colours for less than the price of one!  And honestly, who ever actually finishes an entire bottle of polish?!  I actually don’t have a recent mani to show you with this colour =(.

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Essie’s “First Dance” is another mini from the Wedding collection last spring.  This is a bright, vibrant candy-apple red colour, and it is what lives on my toes in the spring and summer months!  About 90% of the time my toe nails are painted red (of course as I’m writing this they are actually orange =P), but I switch between a brighter red for the spring and summer and a deep crimson for the fall and winter.  There is just something classic that I love about a red toe polish.

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NARS’s “Candy Darling” is another pink, but this one is even cooler toned than “Kiss Me On My Tulips” that I showed earlier.  More of a fuchsia than a pink almost.  My husband got this for me for Christmas (I don’t think I could ever stomach the price of a NARS polish on my own) as part of a set from the Andy Warhol collection that they put out last fall/winter.  The formula is great!  Maybe if other minis they have grab my attention I might be tempted…  Here it is used in a polka-dot manicure!

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“Vespa” from Zoya’s first Pixie Dust collection is certainly the most unique polish in my favourites here, and maybe even my whole collection!  It is one of the textured, matte-but-glittery polishes in a gorgeous pale green colour.  This one takes getting used to for sure, having something gritty on your nails is so strange!  I found that I got shivers running up my spine if they rubbed against the wrong material (for instance my wool jacket).  However, I did love the effect that it gave, and I think I will be trying it next time with a matte top coat to try and smooth it out without losing the effect.

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China Glaze’s “Champagne Kisses” is actually from their Christmas collection last year, but I am loving it for spring!  It is a nice warm champagne-gold colour that reminds me of sand.  Here you can see how I used it with a deep blue to create an ocean inspired manicure =).

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For those of you looking for an office-approvied, but not-boring manicure, I would highly suggest Essie’s “Buy Me A Cameo”.  This is one of the most beautiful polishes that I have ever seen.  It is a gorgeous taupe colour, but it is quite warm, and almost has a pink pearlescent sheen.  It is a nice subtle manicure, but it is such a beautiful shade that you will spend all day staring at it ;).  This photo does not do it justice!

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Now, if you need a polish for Easter, or if you just love lilac, this is the one for you!  Essie’s “Play Date” is a soft purple pastel creme.  It reminds me of “She’s Picture Perfect” from a past collection, except this doesn’t have the gold shimmer.  I have had this on my fingers a few times this spring, which is rare for me because I’m usually into more brights than pastels, and I don’t usually repeat the same polish within a couple of months!  Sadly, I didn’t seem to document any of these occasions =(.

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Last but not least, is one of my all-time favourites, and a polish that I think is a genuinely unique colour.  Essie’s “Mint Mojito” is truly a grass-green polish.  I had wanted something that really showed green for a while, and when I found this one last spring I was sold!  It is not one of the neon greens that lean yellow (which looks awful on me), and it is not such a deep green that it looks more black.  This is a true green creme, and I love it =).  Here it is covered with a single coat of “Swinger” from Butter London.

I am sorry that I didn’t have photos of all of all of the polishes here on my nails, but I’m sure you can use your imagination =).

What are your favourite polishes for Spring??  Do you stick with pastels?

xoxo

I Need Your Help! Ipsy vs. Birchbox: May

Hi Beauties!

For this post I need your help!  I have decided that I want to explore more environmentally and animal friendly beauty products, and therefore I am going to sign up for a vegan beauty box.  I looked at a few, and the one I think I have decided on is Petit Vour.  BUT, I can’t really afford to have three beauty boxes every month!  Much as I would love that, it seems a bit excessive when trying to stay on a budget. SO, based on this month (and previous months), I need your help deciding which box (or boxes) to drop when a subscription to Petit Vour becomes available!  I just took quick photos of everything in each box for you to compare, but if you want to see and hear more about each item be sure to check out my video here!

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First off: Birchbox comes in its standard brown box, and Ipsy comes in a cute re-usable bag every month.

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Here are the goods!

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Birchbox – May, 2013

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Coola – Classic Sunscreen

First up is a sunscreen from Coola.  This is their classic sunscreen moisturizer with SPF 30, a cucumber scent and organic anti-aging ingredients.  The card says that it is a mineral sunblock, but the active ingredients are avobenzone (2%) and octinoxate (2.1%), which means that it is actually a chemical sunscreen.  Avobenzone is inherently unstable, and it breaks down into unknown chemicals when it absorbs UV light, this is what protects the skin.  I have a physical sunscreen from Coola that uses titanium dioxide and zinc oxide, which I love, so I do really like this brand!  They are environmentally friendly and cruelty free, so big thumbs up there!  This sample is 7mL; full size is 50mL and retails for $32.

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Beauty Protector – Protect & Detangle

Next up is a detangling leave in conditioner from Beauty Protector.  I have never heard of this brand before.  It comes in a rubbery bottle, and is a perfect size for travel, it would even be fine for a carry-on!  On the back of the bottle it says that it is a: Instant detangler, thermal protector, UV protector, that it seals cuticle, smoothes hair, locks in colour, adds shine, conditions, and is weightless, non-greasy and ideal for every day use on all hair types.  That’s a lot of claims!  I do need to use a spray in conditioner most days after the shower, as my hair gets super tangled.  I don’t often use heat, but a UV protector is nice!  I don’t have coloured hair, but I might this summer…  If it does all that it promises this will be quite the little product!  I can’t find a size on this anywhere to know how big the sample is, but full size is 8oz (maybe 4x the size of this?) and retails for $21.95.

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Joie – Folle de Joie eau de parfum

And here we have yet another perfume sample from Birchbox.  Enough already!  They all smell the same to me, floral and not my taste.  This one was one of the better ones that I  have received I do have to say though.  “For its debut scent, the chic fashion brand created this carefree mix of mandarin, rose and sandalwood”.  I probably like it better because it has some fruit but is also grounded with the sandalwood.  The small sizes are handy to carry in your purse, but I often find that without a cap these just spray whenever they want to and get all over everything…  This sample is 0.06fl oz, full size is 3.4 fl oz and retails for $98.  I’d have to REALLY love this to spend that much…

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Sumita – Colour Contrast Eyeliner

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Sumita – Colour Contrast Eyeliner

Next is an eyeliner from a brand called Sumita, another that I have never heard of…  “Inspired by traditional Indian formulas, this velvety liner glides on easily and lasts for hours”.  The colour is a really beautiful midnight blue, and the pencil did glide on really smoothly.  I often have worries about the staying power of such soft pencils on my eyelids as they get oily.  I find the UD 24/7 pencil liners go on great, but fade after a few hours.  I rubbed at this swatch after letting it dry for a few minutes, and I did see a bit of colour transfer, but I would never be rubbing my eyelids that hard!  The full size of this is a set of 4 minis (the same size) and I am assuming they                                    come in 4 different colours.  That set retails for $21.

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Pilot – Acroball Pen

Last and very least, we have a pen.  Really?  A pen?  Thanks Birchbox, but I don’t pay $10 for office supply samples.  It writes in pink ink, and came with a $1 off coupon for any 3, 4, or 5 pack.

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Ipsy Glam Bag – May, 2013

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Pacifica – Island Vanilla Perfume Roll-On

This smells so amazing!!  Like sugar cookies or vanilla icing.  Very sweet and delicious.  Not usually my type of fragrance, but I am loving this one =) “Inspired by the unique magic of Tahitian vanilla, this sensual blend sets sweet and sultry vanilla absolute, with honey-jasmine notes and a touch of fruitiness, against a deep and beautiful base of tea.”  This is 0.33 fl oz (10mL), which is full size!  And it retails for $12.  The Ipsy discount for this month is 20% off any purchase from Pacifica.  A portion of all of the sales from the Island Vanilla fragrance line goes to the Ocean Futures Society, a non-profit marine conservation organization, and it is 100% vegan.  How amazing is that!?

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Pacifica – Coconut Crushed Pearl luminizing body butter

Next is another product from Pacifica, the luminizing body butter.  This smells so delicious.  I am not usually a fan of fake coconut smell, but this one is actually really good.  It gives just a slight glow to the skin, so it would be really nice on your legs or just on your décolletage for a night out.  It is cruelty free and contains coconut oil, pearls and sea minerals.  “Shimmer and glow from the inside out with luminescent crushed pearls and ultra-nourishing tropical phytonutrients”.  This is a 2oz tube, which is their mini size, and retails for $7.  The full size is 8oz and retails for $24.  Again, the Ipsy discount is 20% off.

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Juice Beauty – Reflecting Gloss in “Fig”

This product is an exclusive pre-launch through Ipsy!  It is an organic lip gloss that smells delicious.  Fruity and sweet!  It has great pigmentation, as you can tell from the swatch, and has a doe-foot applicator.  It is made with acai and goji berries for antioxidants, as well as minerals and agave nectar (that’s what the smell is!).  I haven’t used this on my lips yet, but I’m sure I will love it!  I have loved everything else I’ve gotten from Juice Beauty so far =)  This is a full size sample, and it retails for $15.

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Juice Beauty – Reflecting Gloss in “Fig”

The discount is also 20% for Juice Beauty.

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Yaby – Concealer in “Buff”

The yaby concealer is actually not too bad of a match for my skin tone, kind of crazy for a beauty box sample!  I haven’t tried it on my face yet, but it seems to be quite thick and high coverage, so for me it would be a blemish and redness concealer, not for under my eyes.  I will have to let you know!  It is a full size refill, which has a value of $5.06.  The discount code for this is actually for camerareadycosmetics.com, and it is 20% off.

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Zoya – Nail Polish in “Neely”

The final product is a full size Zoya nail polish!  It is a really pretty colour called “Neely”.  To me this is more of a true minty green than Essie’s “Mint Candy Apple”.  I actually used it in the manicure that I put on yesterday, so keep an eye out for an Instagram photo!  The first coat goes on streaky, but the second really packs on the colour.  I love my Zoya polishes, so I am really excited to get a new one!  It looks like this could have come in any 1 of 6 pastel colours.  I’m happy with mine =).  The discount code for this is buy two get one free, plus a free 1oz Remove+ (their polish remover) and $5 shipping, pretty good deal!  Zoya polishes retail for $8 on their website.

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Zoya – Nail Polish in “Neely”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Be sure to let me know in the comments below which bag is your favourite and which one you think I should drop!  I can’t wait to show you the goodies I will be getting in my new boxes =)

xoxo

Urban Decay 24/7 Concealer Pencil in CIA

Hey Beauties!

Here is a quick post about the Urban Decay 24/7 Concealer Pencils.  I bought this on HauteLook a while ago for the purpose of having a handy concealer that I could easily just throw in my bag and have with me anywhere I went for touch-ups.

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It is a very convenient form, a nice soft pencil that goes on smoothly and blends right in.  It lasts quite well, but does crease a little bit under the eyes.  This is unfortunate because it turns out the colour that I bought is too light for the rest of my face!  It highlights any blemishes I use it on, so I really only use it under my eyes.  I don’t put it on first thing because it doesn’t last all day on my oily skin, but it is still great for touch-ups before dinner and such, and it highlights nicely.  I think I would use this a lot more if I had a shade or two darker!

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Have any of you used these pencils?  What is your favourite concealer for on-the-go?

xoxo

Pictorial: Black and Bright – Geometric Nails

Hey Beauties!

Here is a simple pictorial (picture tutorial) for a manicure that I wore last summer.  I wanted something a little bit funky that incorporated a bunch of colours, as well as black polish for an edge.  Here is what I came up with!

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Please excuse that there is tip wear and an Instagram filter on this photo…  This was before I really figured out what I was doing with taking photos for my blog, and apparently this is the only photo I have after I cleaned up my nails!  But you get the idea…  (This was actually my first ever Instagram photo!)

Here’s what you need!

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Scissors, 5 bright polish colours, opaque black polish, scotch tape, top/base coat

First Step: Paint each nail a different, bright colour and let it dry completely.

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From L –> R (Pinkie –> Thumb): OPI “Kiss Me On My Tulips”, Essie “Mint Mojito”, Essie “First Dance”, Butter London “Blagger”, OPI “Red Lights Ahead, Where?”

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Next: Cut up straight strips of scotch tape to the desired thickness that you want the stripes of colour to show through (or use striping tape).  For the pattern that I created you will need 4 strips for each nail, so 40 in total.  Arrange the strips in the desired pattern, either on all nails of one hand, or work one nail at a time.  Paint over with a thick coat of black polish.  This needs to be opaque in one coat!

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Quickly peel off the tape strips before the polish dries to get nice, crisp lines.  This will show off the bright colours underneath!

Here is the finished look before I cleaned up around the edges (I’m normally messy, but this is to the extreme!):

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You can see that I didn’t get all of the strips the same size, if you want these to be perfect I recommend using striping tape.  I really like how it turned out, and I got lots of compliments on them!

What do you think?

If you recreate this look please tweet me photos @wstcoastbeauty !

xoxo

NOTD: Eggplants and Pirouettes

Hey Beauties,

This will be just a quick post because it is a recap of my favourite nail combination from the past fall.

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This is OPI: “Vampsterdam” topped with OPI: “Pirouette My Whistle”.

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Vampsterdam is a gorgeous deep eggplant purple with a hint of a warm burgundy shimmer. It is from the Holland Collection in 2012. This is by far my favourite nail polish for fall. Be sure to check out my post and video all about my favourite fall nail polishes!

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Pirouette My Whistle is the only full sized polish that I bought from the New York City Ballet collection that came out a while back. I LOVE it! Such a delicate glitter top coat. It is a clear base infused with shimmering micro-glitter particles and sparse white hexagonal glitter. It adds a real feminine touch to any manicure =).

This combination spent a lot of time on my nails this past fall! And I know it will be around again in the fall of 2013.

Did you have a favourite manicure for any of the past seasons?

xoxo