Thursday, August 30, 2012

DIY: Peel Off Base Coat

When I read a few reviews of Essence's Peel Off Base Coat, I was super excited. Instead of endless scrubbing with acetone and using an entire bag of cotton balls, you can simply peel off your manicure when you are done? Yes, please! Then I read Peel Off Base Coat is not yet available in the US. Boo. But in my searching, I came across this brilliant DIY from Lab Muffin and simply had to test it out!

Here's the scoop: paint a generous coat of PVA glue on your nails (aka Elmer's), let dry (it will turn from white to clear!), put on glitter polish, and peel it off when you're done. That's seriously it. I encourage you to read Lab Muffin's much more thorough instructions.

1. Painting on glue - I used Elmer's Glue-All.  | 2. This is actually a bit too much | 3. Almost dry! | 4. Everything looks normal once glitter polish is applied | 5. Peeling off the polish | 6. All off, except for a bit on the tip where I missed a spot with the glue

It came such a wonderful moment when the glitter polish came off so easily - I was able to slide my nail right under the edge and peel if off. Because it came off without much effort, I'm going to guess that an Elmer's glue-based manicure won't stand up to normal wear and tear or even a few hours of intense typing. Experimenting with the application may make this last longer - perhaps not putting the Elmer's all the way to the edges so that your top coat would really seal in your manicure?

I looked up some more information about Elmer's Glue-All (found here) and according to Elmer's, there is "no information on significant adverse effects" for skin. But please keep in mind that Elmer's glue was not designed to be used as a nail polish base coat. Please use judgement and don't use Elmer's glue as a base coat if you are allergic to it.

Here's another review of this method!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Fashion's Night Out 2012: The Best Nail Polish Events

As summer winds down, Fashion Week excitement starts up. That also means another Fashion's Night Out is just around the corner. Love it or loathe it, FNO is one of the most accessible parts of Fashion Week as a majority of events are open and free to all.

The FNO website is a great resource for navigating the many events around town on September 6th, but with 793 events listed in NYC alone, I've narrowed down the list and made a guide to scout out the best nail polish and manicures of Fashion's Night Out! I added my own notes to the FNO event descriptions in purple.

Quick Summary:

  • FNO manicures being offered: 15
  • Limited edition shades: 1? NARS is releasing a "one night only" collection, but it isn't clear if this will include a nail polish. Update: the NARS collection will be an eyeshadow duo and a velvet matte lip pencil. No polish. Sadly, it doesn't seem that Nails Inc is releasing another limited edition shade this year :/
  • New polish releases: 2, possibly 3? The TWIN-SETS DE CHANEL collection, Estée Lauder NEW Pure Color Nail Lacquers, and Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics F/W 2012 Collection (polish?)

Events details are still being finalized, but I do hope this list will get you off to a good start! Read to the bottom for some other events that are particularly interesting!

Click through to see the list...

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Essie "Miss Fancy Pants" Gets Some Fancy Pants

Essie Miss Fancy Pants is a chalky mushroom creme polish. This color reminds me of the smooth stone buildings around the city (pics at the bottom). While this hue is not ground-breaking, it's classy and a nice alternative to a traditional pale pink manicure. Wonderful for fall.

I wanted to give Miss Fancy Pants some fancy pants (how did a pale taupe polish end up with such an extravagant name?) and added Butter Lovely Jubbly to my ring finger. Wow, what an instant upgrade - Lovely Jubbly just took this manicure from "meh" to "OMG"!

In the nail polish world today, $8 can get you something a bit more unique. I probably would have passed on this shade if I hadn't found it for $3.99 at Cosmetic Market (15 East 37th St between Madison and 5th Ave).While Miss Fancy Pants didn't knock my socks off, it has the "good" Essie formula. The one that is creamy and opaque and not thin and streaky. Wonder how this compares to another new Essie shade called Yogaga?

Essie polishes can be easily located around NYC (shopping map). I usually find the latest collections at Ricky's and Bed Bath & Beyond.

Some lovely stone buildings in NYC...

Ralph Lauren flagship, Madison Ave

The Met

Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

butter LONDON Autumn/Winter 2012 Collection

Butter LONDON's newest collection for autumn/winter 2012 is made up of (5) shades that are each quite incredible. There's something for everyone including TWO holographic polishes!
"Sequins! Velvet! Satin! Tweed! This season, the catwalks were abundant with rich texture! We've translated this to nails through the infusion of glitter particles and metallic and holographic finishes. This collection feels future-forward but not futuristic. This season is all about using texture to add interest and depth to your look!"
I love that Butter hasn't overwhelmed polish lovers with too many collections or collections that are too large. Releasing only a handful of shades at a time makes it seem that each color is created and chosen carefully.

Gobsmacked is a fine charcoal glitter. The first coat applies thin, but the formula is controllable. I used (2) coats below but next time I'll use (3) as some bald spots were noticeable in the light box. This polish reminds me of my druzy ring (seen here)! The finish is gritty and matte, so do apply top coat liberally. Gobsmacked would make a great non-traditional accent finger, wouldn't it?

Gobsmacked: "to be totally speechless"

Shag is a shimmery metallic rusty orange. This shade reminds me of a pumpkin spice latte and pinky/reddish tones appear in different lighting- what a fall color! Shag applied perfectly and there were no strange brush strokes.

Shag: "Brit slang for 'knocking boots' " 

Lovely Jubbly is a serious glitter party with magenta, red, blue, and gold glitter. My boyfriend said this looks like Black Knight without the black - I thought that was a pretty good observation, what do you think? I want to wear this as an accent nail all the time. Lovely Jubbly dries pretty quickly and (3) coats is best for an opaque look. In the words of Gob at the Bluth Company holiday party, "Everybody dance NOW."

Lovely Jubbly: "Brit speak for 'excellent'. Used when a person hears pleasing news or has a stroke of good luck"

Trustafarian is a spring green holo polish. While not linear, the holo is pretty intense in the sunlight and displays a rainbow of color. Trustafarian is sheer - I used (3) coats.



Trustafarian: "A spoiled rich kid who pretends to be a hippy but still goes home to Daddy's mansion on the weekend"

Dodgy Barnett is the silver version of Trustafarian. Because it is sheer, Dodgy Barnett would be a great polish to add on top a cream polish to create a subtle holo effect. I used (3) coats below.



Dodgy Barnett: "A bad hairdo. A mullet of any variety is a seriously Dodgy Barnett"

Butter LONDON polishes retail for $14. In New York City, my favorite retailers of Butter polishes are C.O. Bigelow, Ricky's, and now Henri Bendel. There are many more! Here is a list of retailers in New York City that carry Butter nail polish.

Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Gotham Polish Featured in REDBOOK

Happy Friday! Just wanted to share with you that my nails are featured in a REDBOOK article about nail art for grown ups. Check it out here!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Layering with the Zoya Gloss Polishes

The three colors in Zoya's Gloss collection are sheer jelly polishes that are extremely easy to work with. Why would you want a polish that is so sheer? While they can be worn on their own (swatched here), you can make the jelly glitter sandwich of your dreams or tint a polish pink, purple, or teal. This is quite a versatile set of polishes!

Here is Paloma over a chunky, colorful glitter. The glitter is slightly tinted pink so the final manicure has a very cohesive appearance.

1 coat Zoya Paloma + 1 coat Milani Gems + 2 coats Zoya Paloma

Because the Gloss polishes cover so evenly, they can change the color of another polish. One coat of Catherine turns bright white silver into a metallic light purple! Use two or three coats to intensify the color. I left my ring finger un-tinted so you can see the contrast.

2 coats Duri Celebrity Scandal + 1 coat Zoya Catherine

Here is Frida used to both sandwich and tint a silver holo glitter. Doesn't this look like a magical ocean? Next time, I think I will start with two coats of Frida to intensify the base color or do a second sandwich over top to create more depth.

1 coat Zoya Frida + 2 coats NYX Spot Light + 1 coat Zoya Frida

Want to see more amazing layering with the Gloss polishes? Mimi from Makeup Withdrawal layered the gloss polishes here and Cristina from Let Them Have Polish! created some excellent jelly sandwiches here.

Zoya polishes retail for $8.00 and are Big 5 free. In New York City, Zoya can be purchased at several locations including Gideon's Drugs (1385 Broadway, corner of 38th St) and Ulta in the Rego Park Center. See the full list here.

I reviewed the Designer collection here, the Diva collection here, and the Gloss collection here.

Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Weekend Shopping: OPI Germany, Wet & Wild Fergie, and Sula

Happy Weekend! Can you believe the Olympics will be over on Sunday already? Two weeks went by so fast, but I am looking forward to returning to my normal schedule of getting to bed before midnight ;)

Here are some new collections I've spotted recently. I encourage you to leave a comment if you've come across any new or interesting polish finds this week in your journeys :)

The OPI Germany collection has landed at Ricky's! Now... if only I could decide between Every Month is Oktoberfest and German-icure by OPI... Store Locator

Duane Reade is now carrying Sula Paint & Peel polishes! I spotted a display at 65th and 3rd Ave. Has anyone tried Sula polishes?

I found the Wet & Wild Fergie polishes at Rite Aide on 69th and 2nd.

On Saturday, Street Fair Cosmetics will be at University Place/Waverly Place - 14th Street. On Sunday, they will be at the street fair on 3rd Ave somewhere between 23rd and 34th St. Check their Facebook page for more specifics.

Friendly reminder - on Aug 15, the Color Club holo polishes are scheduled to be released and could be showing up on shelves any day now. Here is a list of Color Club retailers in NYC.

In other news, this Saturday is another Summer Streets!

Did you find any new polishes this week? Happy shopping :)

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Zoya Fall 2012 Gloss Collection

Inspired by backstage beauties, talented designers, runways and VIP fashion events, the NYFW 2012 Color Collections by Zoya for Fall 2012 are simply stunning. Choose from full-coverage creams and metallics or incredibly shiny jellies.
Each New Fall Collection (Designer, Diva and Gloss) features color that is beautiful, long-wearing and “haute” off the New York Fashion Week (NYFW) Fall 2012 runway!
The (3) colors in the Gloss collection are special and unlike any other polishes I've tried. They are quite sheer - one coat looks like you painted your nails with water colors. But the formula is not at all watery and instead extremely easy to work with. The Gloss polishes applied just as well as an opaque polish! I found that using (3) coats yielded solid coverage and (4) achieved the color in the bottle.

You might be wondering "Why would I want a polish that is so sheer?" While they can be worn on their own, think of these polishes more as tools. Because they are sheer and even to apply, these are going to be great to layer over glitters or used to tint another shade. There is lots of potential for combinations so Team One-Coater-s, I hope you take a good look at the Gloss collection.

Paloma is a magenta pink polish. Love this one! I didn't use a top coat - this wonderful shine is part of the Gloss formula :)

Four coats

One coat on pointer, two on middle, three on ring, and four on pinky

Katherine is the eggplant brownish-purple polish brought back from the Peter Som Fashion Week collection. This color screams 'fall'.

Four coats

One coat on pointer, two on middle, three on ring, and four on pinky

Frida is a murky greenish turquoise. I am dreaming up some fun mermaid-inspired layering manicures with this color!

Four coats

One coat on pointer, two on middle, three on ring, and four on pinky

Zoya polishes retail for $8.00 and are Big 5 free. In New York City, Zoya can be purchased at several locations including Gideon's Drugs (1385 Broadway, corner of 38th St) and Ulta in the Rego Park Center. See the full list here.

I reviewed the Designer collection here and the Diva collection here.

Product(s) in this post were provided for review. Read my disclosure policy here.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Summer Streets 2012 Kicks Off This Saturday!

Grab your bike/running shoes/roller blades because this Saturday, August 4th kicks off the fifth annual Summer Streets! Last summer was lots of fun (see pictures here) and this summer looks amazing as well -there's going to be a zip line and rock climbing wall on the route!

From the Summer Streets website:
On August 4, 11 and 18 from 7 am to 1 pm, nearly seven miles of New York City's streets will be opened up for everyone to play, run, walk and bike. From the Brooklyn Bridge to Central Park, along Park Avenue and connecting streets you can rock climb at Spring Street, receive a free bike helmet at 51st Street, soar through the air on a zip line at Foley Square or just stroll along and experience the city's streets in a new way—all for free.
Check out all the activities here. Are you going to go?

wearing China Glaze Shocking Pink with my bike during Summer Streets 2011