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a hoarder's blog

going through my stash one swatch at a time
March 31, 2014

Nail Art Fun: Pond Mani

Ever heard of a pond mani? I hadn't until recently. It's like a jelly sandwich but with nail art in between the layers. So the concept is kinda the same as a glitter sandwich. You apply a first layer of jelly polish, then you draw a design (in my case, I did simple flowers using a white polish and a dotting tool), then paint on another layer of jelly polish, and dot on more flowers and apply another coat of jelly etc.

For the final touch, draw a final flower on top and don't jelly that one. The completed look will be like below with some flowers buried deep down and some in between and then some on top. My explanation is not so detailed but I hope you got the idea. :) The polish I used is an old Etude House PK012. 

March 12, 2014

Turquoise Stone Nails with Essie Where's My Chauffeur

I did this turquoise stone nail art for last year's #PolishTogether December birthstone theme. I followed this tutorial here. It was my first time trying it out and it was kind of a hit and miss. Sometimes it'd turn out nice and I liked the way it looked. Sometimes the black veins didn't come out looking too good or looked too close together, so I had to redo the whole nail. The overall end result is still not very even looking, but I let it pass cos I could have literally spent hours re-doing them til they looked perfect. My right hand nails were a little bit worse off than my left cos I couldn't be bothered after a while. Haha!

I didn't shoot any step-by-step pics but here are the steps in short (or read the tutorial i linked above for a more visual breakdown):

  • paint nails with base colour preferably a turquoise colour and let dry
  • randomly dab on some gold colour on each nail and let dry
  • have a cup of water ready (I used tap water at room temperature)
  • tape the sides of your nails to make cleanup easier later (I used lip balm all around the edges instead)
  • get your black polish, toothpick and alcohol product ready (Tutorials mostly recommend hairspray, but I didn't have any, so I used my Clinique clarifying lotion [!!!] instead. I had a little bit left, tried it and it worked for me)
  • drop one-two drops of black polish over the water in the cup and let it spread
  • once it's sufficiently spread out, take your spray and spray over the spread-out black polish. This will create breaks on the surface of the black polish
  • quickly dip your finger in
  • get the toothpick and use it to gather the black stuff that's still floating on the water before taking your finger out
  • clean up leftover polish around nail, let dry
  • apply topcoat

Sounds like a lot of work huh? Don't worry, you get the hang of it after a while.

I used Essie Where's My Chauffeur as my base colour, a random gold polish and A-England Camelot for the black. 

This is the look prior to applying the black veins. I lightly dabbed on the gold with a sponge.

And the finished look is below. 

Like I mentioned, it's not very even. The black veins on my last two nails look much darker than the rest. This is because sometimes the black polish would clump together when I'm taking my finger out of the water, creating a much darker pattern.

This is how I wish all my nails would have turned out. Nicely spread out black veins.

The overall look isn't too bad though. It was worth the effort to me. I loved looking at my nails.

March 02, 2014

Nude Chevrons With OPI Taupe-less Beach and OPI I São Paulo Over There

The first time I found out about Nail Vinyls was on Instagram. Some people I follow started posting nice chevron manis and gave credit to @teismom, the owner of Nail Vinyls. That's how I discovered that you could buy "stickers" and make those fancy lines on your nails without going through the trouble of cutting up adhesive tape/scotch tape. I suck at tape manis too by that way. I have tried that method and don't think I have been very successful cos I just don't have the time and patience and always end up ruining everything. So I thought, wow I think I really need those things in my life, because why go through frustration of taping when there's an easier way of doing it.

Nail Vinyls are basically pre-cut shapes on vinyl sheets. They're just like stickers that you peel off and stick on your nails, paint over and remove. Even though they come in different colours, they're not meant to be stuck on and left on the nail as part of your nail art. They're also not meant to be re-used as the shape of the vinyl can change after removing.

I mostly wanted to buy chevrons but in the end, I checked out the variety pack which comprises of chevrons (regular, mini and maxi sizes), single chevron, straights, french tip, lightning bolts and half-moon. You can visit nailvinyls.com if you're interested. She also does stars and zebra vinyls.

If you're looking for more adventurous shapes, you can find moustache, lips, waves, hearts, ribbons, dogs, cats etc from some stores on etsy. 

So for my first chevron mani, I used two OPI Brazil polishes, Taupe-less Beach (light taupe) and I São Paulo Over There (brown taupe) from the Brazil collection. They applied very nicely, formula's good. Looks a bit thick on my chevron nails cos that's like 3-ish coats (2 for base and one thick coat on top for the chevron).

I wore those nails to go watch Jamie Cullum perform last Thursday for the Singapore International Jazz Festival. He is just amazingly talented and one of my most favourite performers ever.

February 13, 2014

OPI Baby Please Come Home

OPI Baby Please Come Home is one of the six liquid sand polishes released in the Mariah Carey collection. It is a greyish metallic lilac that dries to a textured finish. I painted two coats and went to bed, hoping that I wouldn't ruin my nails while sleeping. I guess they dried fast enough cos nothing dreadful happened. I really like this one, it's very pretty.

I like the bits of glitter that pop up on top to add sparkle to the concrete look.

February 12, 2014

Valentine's Day themed nails for 2014

Did this set of Valentine's Day nails using mostly OPI polishes, namely Pink Friday, Kiss Me On My Tulips and Teenage Dream (bottle shots below). The white is OPI Alpine Snow and the green is China Glaze Four Leaf Clover.

OPI Pink Friday from the Nicki Minaj collection - 2 coats (this polish bubbles on me. I don't know if it's me or the polish that has a problem)

OPI Kiss Me On My Tulips from the Holland collection - 2 coats

OPI Teenage Dream from the Katy Perry collection - 3 coats

Love the way this looks. More in love with the roses that I managed to paint. It's fairly easy to be honest, just that I'm not always very skillful with an art brush. So I'm very very pleased with how they turned out.

Hope you like these as much as I do!

December 02, 2013

Nail Art Fun: Waterfall Nails

This is a design that I've seen on Instagram and that I wanted to try out because it looked doable by my standards. As mentioned before, I do not have much skill when it comes to handling a brush for complicated nail art. So anything that looks easy to do, I will try my hand at it.

I did this a while ago and I can't remember the colours I used. Ughh. But anyhoo, it's not that hard to do, just swipe, swipe, swipe the colours on side by side. 

It looks OK for a first try, although my lines are not fine enough at the tip. Really not blessed with brush skills.

Link to tutorial HERE.

December 02, 2013

Nail Art Fun: Distressed Nail Art

This is a design that was inspired by Chalkboard Nails. The look is abstract and grungy, and appropriately named distressed nails. It doesn't require much skill and it's really easy to do. That is really important to me because I know I'm not good at any nail art that involves drawing and lines.

There aren't many rules to follow for this one. Paint on a white base (I used OPI Alpine Snow), get some complimentary colours (I chose three colours: a purple BL505 from Etude House, a turquoise #30 from Holika Holika, and a pinkish holo polish from Different Dimension..long story about this one), and one black polish to finish up.

Make sure to wipe off most of the polish off your brush before swiping on your nail. Just random strokes of polish everywhere. Do so with the different colours you chose. This is how it looks like before applying the black polish. 

To finish up, do the same with the black polish. The brush needs to be almost dry to achieve this look. 

I really enjoyed this one. Simple and easy to do and right up my alley. It kinda looks like shatter, but not really. 

Link to tutorial HERE.

January 07, 2013

Ozotic Sugar 902 and galaxy nail

Happy New Year everyone! A tad late, but we are only a week into 2013! Hope everybody had a good start. I was away on holiday in Europe during Christmas season, and took the opportunity to leave my nails bare and give them a chance to take a break from all that nail polish. After all, I was gonna be wearing gloves most of the time! Nobody could see my yellowed nails. My nails grew quite a bit and I cut some of the yellow ends away. They look healthier now in terms of colour, but the dry air and cold of winter took a toll on my skin. Even with hand cream everyday, after every handwash, my skin peeled and my cuticles started lifting off on some nails. Just horrible! There's still some damage now but they are slowly recovering. 

I must say it was rather liberating to be without nail polish for the past two weeks. When I got home, I was lazy to paint, given the condition of my cuticles. But I couldn't resist it no more last night and I decided to just do something for fun. That's when I did the galaxy nail on my ring finger while watching TV. For the rest, I decided to paint them with Ozotic Sugar 902, since the black base was already in place.

So here's one coat of Ozotic Sugar 902 over a black creme (Nails Inc Black Taxi). I also used Ozotic Sugar 902 as one of the colours for the galaxy nail.

Here's the colour indoors. You can see a hint of the duochrome (purple and blue).

More blue

More purple

Pardon the used tip of my galaxy nail. I went to wash my hair straight after and it came out all used up.

And here's a glorious shot of the colours in natural light. Isn't it gorgeous? It just glows!

I bought my Ozotic 902 from startrinkets, but it's OOS there and no more stock is coming in. And so, I suggest getting your Ozotic from OverallBeauty, llarowe, or ninjapolish.

August 18, 2012

Nail Art Fun: Galaxy Nails

I had a go at galaxy nails today. I always thought it looked kinda complicated and difficult to do. I googled galaxy nails and found some tutorials. I discovered that there are actually different types of galaxy nails designs as explained over here: the milky way, planetary haze, stellar gases, cosmic dust..I'm sure it doesn't end there. I'm not sure what category mine falls in. Probably cosmic dust.

Anyway, I don't have a step by step tutorial for this as I don't have anybody else to take pictures for me. 

Things that I used: a black polish for the base, a white polish, a glitter polish, a pink polish and a light green polish (which incidentally contained flakies), a sponge and a dotting tool. If you don't have a dotting tool, you can use a toothpick or a pin, something with a pointy end. The colours are as you wish. It can be a dark blue base instead of black, and to create your nebulae, you can use a red, a purple, a yellow etc.. Just go with your imagination. 

(This is the tutorial I followed and it turned out looking quite different.)

First I applied the black polish as my base colour. Then I sponged on the light green halfway down my nail over the black. Subsequently I sponged on the pink over the green and the white over the pink to create my nebulae. It may not look perfect at one go, just go over the same colours until you achieve the pattern you are looking for. Remember to let your layers dry before applying new layers because the wet polish might lift off the previous layer of wet polish.

Apply the glitter polish to create the effect of stars in the galaxy. Finish with a few white dots and a top coat. That's about it! Easy peasy! I am rather pleased with my first attempt and so I shall spam you with some pictures.

You can see the holographic glitter on the thumb courtesy of China Glaze Shooting Stars. How appropriate!

Hope you liked it!

August 08, 2012

Nail Art Fun: Watercolour splatter nails

What do you get when you throw all these colours together for a mani? 

Watercolour splatter nails! And the only tool you need is a straw. Well, a piece of it, or you'll be blowing your lungs out if it is too long. 

Colours used:

  • OPI Alpine Snow
  • OPI Banana Bandanna
  • China Glaze Secret Peri-wink-le
  • China Glaze Starboard
  • China Glaze Sugar High

What I did was: apply the base colour, then apply some polish at the end of my straw and blow it out from the other end onto my nails, thereby creating the splatter design. Do the same with different colours until desired pattern is formed. And voila!

I've had some comments today like oh, I have a blouse with a print that looks like the one on your middle finger. It just made me smile. Someone also told me that it looks kiddy. Well, doesn't matter, I really like how this turned out. It's messy, yet I find it pretty. 

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This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me. I don't get paid to feature any particular product and if that ever happens, I will be sure to let you know. Everything posted here are products that I have purchased with my own money on my (online) shopping trips. Views and opinions expressed on this blog are my own and fellow bloggers'.

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