Sunday, July 31, 2016

Thermal Fun


Morning all!

I'd forgotten how fun thermal polishes are, I haven't played around with one since December!
This is from the same line polishes from BPS, this is #8 from Blue Sky.

It's a bright cotton candy pink while warm, and then blackened chestnut brown when cold.





Pop by again sometime~

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Beauty Ally Makeup Brushes



Hello all!

This is less of an intelligent review, and more of a "ooh pretty brushes" spam, I hit that perfect golden hour while taking these pictures, and these brushes are too gorgeous to only have one or two pics.

Beauty Ally sent these over for me to test and review, the set has 10 brushes, a mirror compact, and a carrying case that snaps together to keep the brushes safe while not in use. 



These are synthetic bristles, but they're super soft and I only noticed a couple loose stray hairs when I first took them out of the packing. For some reason in sunlight the bristles look blue, but in normal lighting they're just an off white which is kinda strange.
These are very dense and pick up product easily, I've been using the eyebrow brush and eyeshadow blur brush the most~ I wish the powder brush was a bit larger, but overall I love each of these brushes and I expect to get a ton of use out of them.




Pop by again sometime~

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Pastel Matte Florals


Morning all!

I was in a pastel matte mood, used the polishes nearest to hand, and it didn't end up looking too shabby! I just now noticed I have some cat hairs stuck to the edge of my nail, hopefully the pretty glitter outshines them, haha.

Mani Ingredients:
Wet n Wild Megalast Candid Affair 
Maybelline Color Show Gilded Rose
OPI Viking in a Vinter Vonderland
Pure Ice Frost Finish Matte Topcoat

Wistonia plate W314


Pop by again sometime~

Monday, July 18, 2016

Hearts & Glass Perfect Kiss



Morning all!

I found this polish on clearance at Grocery Outlet, the brand is called Hearts & Glass, I love that the bottle is actually heart shaped! This shade is named Perfect Kiss, the finish reminds me of A-England Briar Rose. I still haven't gotten around to buying any A-Englands, I basically want every polish they've ever made, so I'll need to start saving up.

Born Pretty sent me these cute vinyls which I used with OPI Viking in a Vinter Vonterland. If you get to shopping around, this code is good for 10% off: ALBK31



Pop by again sometime~

Saturday, July 16, 2016

L'Oréal Voluminous VoxBox


Morning all!

I was so excited to open this voxbox, Influenster and L'oreal were extremely generous this time around, and I got quite the haul of makeup goodies~

I get the feeling the Voluminous Mascara and Primer are meant to be the stars of the box, but to be honest I was more excited to try the Brow Stylist Kit, it actually came with a mini tweezer, and combo spoolie/angled brush which are too tiny to actually use, but definitely a cute touch!



I used all of these products in the look above, I'm very happy with the brow kit, and the Infallible Eyeliner was great for my tightline. I've never used a lash primer like this before, it definitely boosted the length and volume of the mascara, but made for some major clump-age.
I was disappointed by the two eyeshadows, these came in the shades Paris Beach (the nude pink) and Pain Au Chocolat (the bronze shimmer), they go on super sheer and are not pigmented enough for my liking. So I went in with an old Wet n Wild eyeshadow palette over the top to boost the color.

I gotta give them props for the packaging, I'm digging the matte gold color scheme, very old school glam.


Pop by again sometime~

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Nail Diaries: Length Update



Morning lovelies!

This is just a little update on how my nails are looking after the big chop, I'm slowly working my way back towards my original coffin shape. I've started using glass files to shape my nails, as they're gentler and seem to make for cleaner finish. And I've also been going crazy with jojoba oil to keep them hydrated and prevent breaks.
The file is from Germanikure (cute name right?), they sent me the "Books and Coffee" design which is pretty fitting for me, I think it's going to live on my desk at work, because god knows I have enough files at home.

Pop by again sometime!

Sunday, July 10, 2016

We were only trying to drown her


Morning all!

I wish I could wear mermaid everything, but for now I'll have to make do with my nails :) That darker shade is actually a textured polish, I was going for a scaly sandy look, but somehow it didn't dry textured?? Still looks cute though!

Born Pretty sent me these scale nail vinyls to review and I immediately knew I had to paint some glittery mermaid magic with them.

Mani Ingredients:
RGB Mint
L'oreal Hidden Gems
BPS Nail Vinyls
China Glaze Luxe & Lush
Pure Ice Frost Finish



Pop by again~

Friday, July 8, 2016

BornPretty Chameleon Swatches


Morning all~

Today I have some swatches of another chameleon polish that BPS sent over for me to review, this is the shade #224!
This is a tricky one, in the bottle it shifts from bright emerald to teal, but it's almost impossible to catch on the nail. I have so many polishes that look gorgeous in the bottle and reflect practically the entire rainbow, but once you get it on your nails the polish clams up and will only show one shade :/ Camera shy maybe?

Here's the link to the polish, and if you get to shopping around, this code is good for 10% off: ALBK31


Pop by again~

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Bunny, Skull, Bunny, Skull


Morning all!

If you can't tell from the title of this post, I've been binge watching the new season of Orange is the New Black, and as soon as I saw that scene in the episode "Bunny, Skull, Bunny, Skull", I had to make those nails a reality. 



I decided to paint the bunnies peeking over the edge of my nails. I noticed that when I put two nails together it kind of looks like a wisdom tooth, my mind wanders strange places while I'm sifting through my camera roll for a shot that's not blurry, haha.

Mani Ingredients:
OPI Alpine Snow
Spoiled Visually Slimming
Jordana Shiny Top Coat
Forever 21 unnamed crelly
BM-612



Pop by again sometime~

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Molten Blueberries


Morning all!

I'm reviewing some new duochrome polishes that Born Pretty sent over for me to try out, I was sent this blueberry shade and also an emerald green polish which I'll also be swatching in a few days.


These aren't individually named; this is shade is #223 from their chameleon collection, it shifts from a royal purple to a deep sapphire. Application was a little fussy, this is actually four coats because it was coming out patchy, but it leveled out nicely and is definitely worth the effort!
I really like these brushes, they're similar to Sally Hansen X-Treme wear, I love the rounded ends because it makes getting a clean finish around the cuticle super easy without having to go back with a clean up brush & acetone.
Here's the link to the polish, and if you get to shopping around, this code is good for 10% off: ALBK31


Pop by again sometime~

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Swatch Sunday: Rue Beaute! Layered Polishes


Morning all!

Rue 21 has a ton of these layered polishes on sale for a buck each so I grabbed a handful, they had some similar to these a couple years back, but I haven't seen them since.

The white, pink, and blue one actually glows in the dark, I noticed a couple days after taking these pics when I saw the bottle glowing on my shelf!
I'm not sure what they were thinking while putting together the polish on the far right, the top layer is pink glitter suspended in clear coat, and then the bottom layers are sheer shimmers, so the glitter topper just slides around on top without mixing at all.
This is about 3 coats each, all topped with shiny topcoat.


Pop by again sometime~

Friday, July 1, 2016

Behind the scenes: How I edit nail art pictures, videos, and how I put together posts


Morning all~

Today I've got a quick rundown on how I put together my posts, edit pictures, and videos. If I missed anything, just leave a comment and ask away!

Videos
I don't make videos very often, because compared to a picture tutorial they're a major pain, but when I do get around to making one, I use Lightworks for editing, it's free and has some great features. You have to renew the 7 day license to keep using it which is a tad annoying, but still better than paying 30$+ for an alternate program. For voiceovers I use this online recorder and my laptop's mic, but the new headphones that Mixder sent over have a mic so I might give that a whirl.

Photo editing
I primarily use Picsart nowadays, mostly for cuticle watermarks like the one below and color correction, they also have some pretty useful text tools. I use Picasa to upload and crop pictures, and then I've downloaded Bluestacks to be able to use photo editing apps like Picsart on my laptop. My main camera is a Nikon 5200 with a 18-55 lens, I recently got it after my Panasonic point and shoot went on strike and stopped zooming.



Staying Inspired
I follow quite the array of nail artists on Instagram so I rarely hit a nail art block, but on the rare occasion I do, I'll troll tumblr or my polish groups on FB like Polishaholics Anonymous or Nail Nuts United. I work full time mon-fri so I try to schedule posts in advance over the weekend, but it doesn't always work out that way. I get home past ten at night so any writing would not be particularly legible, so I do try my best to at least get caught up in the mornings.

I like to either listen to playlists on 8tracks or watch Netflix while typing and painting, and lately I'm always wearing my newghost headphones (I'm wearing them in the pic at the top), Mixder was kind enough to mail them over for me to use. They're bluetooth so I can wander around the house while I'm waiting for things to dry or take pictures without worrying about being attached by a cord to my laptop. I just finished off the latest season of OITNB so I'll have to find a new show, I've run out of dubbed anime, and it's difficult to read subtitles while painting, so I'll need to find something in English, wish me luck!

Pop by again sometime~