Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Review: L.A. Colors Nail Polish

This update is all about a new nail polish brand that I’ve found that I’m really enjoying. L.A. Colors. If you’re looking for an inexpensive way to grow your nail polish collection this brand is a great option. I have recently (since Saturday) purchased quite a few different shades from this line. I am impressed with the quality of the product, especially since the regular retail price of each polish is only $1.99. To sweeten the deal, this week L.A. Colors has a 25% off promotion on this brand, therefore I paid $1.49 for each.

There are many different finishes such as glossy, duo-chrome, neon, glitter, and metallic. Below you will see the ones I purchased. I have at least one of each type however some finishes didn’t photograph well. I will put the name of each and it’s finish in the photo label. (If you’d like to see one photographed on its own, comment below!)

Also, there are two different collections by this brand, ‘Nail Lacquer’ and ‘Color Craze’. The first (Nail Lacquer) is what I believe to be their permanent collection. The second (Color Craze) I’m not 100% positive about; however, I have seen both collections together for the past few months. (The Color Craze collection names their polishes with the theme of ‘electricity, very cute.)

To shorten this list L.A. Colors will be “LA”; Nail Lacquer will be “NL”; Color Craze will be “CC”.

Back, Left to Right
LA, CC in ‘Voltage’ NP401 (Clear) - LA, CC in ‘Energy Source’ NP402 (Glossy White) - LA, NL in ‘Metallic Silver’ NP284 (Opaque* Metallic Glitter Silver) - LA, NL in ‘Black Velvet’ NP136 (Glossy Black) - LA, NL in Metallic Purple NP 287 (Opaque Metallic Glitter Purple) - LA, NL in ‘Rainbow Glitter’ NP 263 (Translucent Multi-Colour Micro Glitter)

Middle, Left to Right
LA, NL in 'Cotton Candy' NP238 (Duo-Chrome Light Pink/Blue*) - LA, CC in 'Electric Charge' NP405 (Glossy Pink) - LA, CC in 'Electrified' NP408 (Opaque Metallic Glitter Pink) - LA, NL in 'Shocker' NP355 (Purple Fuchsia/Blue) - LA, CC in 'Phenomena' NP423 (Glossy Purple/Fuchsia)

Front, Left to Right
LA, CC in 'Static Electricity' NP421 (Glossy Medium Blue) - LA, NL in 'Metallic Blue' NP288 (Opaque Metallic Glitter Blue) - LA, CC in 'Atomic' NP420 (Glossy Green Teal) - LA, CC in 'Force' NP410 (Metallic Bronze Gold) - LA, CC in 'Shock' NP419 (Glossy Neon Orange) - LA, CC in 'Wave Length' NP413 (Metallic Yellow Gold)

* Opaque means that is applies without being see-through. The metallic glitter purple, silver and blue are not regular glitters, they are full-coverage polishes on their own.
* Duo-Chrome is a finish that is two colours: the base colour and the reflective second shade that is reminiscent of a pearl finish. Absolutely GORGEOUS. Photo's below.
Duo-Chrome Light Pink/Blue 'Cotton Candy'
Duo-Chrome Purple Fuchsia/Blue 'Shocker'
As of today I have used the glossy pink 'Electric Charge', glossy black 'Black Velvet' and clear 'Voltage'. They come out very pigmented and wear well. I always use a base coat and a top coat with mine and have not noticed any chipping so far. (I use 'Voltage' as my top coat.) I will update in a few days time to comment if there are any changes.

UPDATE - It wore well, however on the fourth day my polish peeled back on one of my nails. Other than that, there was only very minimal tip wear and it was still quite glossy.

Thanks for reading. :)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Nail Look: A Pop of Colour

My shift at work got cancelled and in my boredom I came up with the new nail look you see below. I’m very excited about it because it uses my favourite colour (pink) and, of course, glitter! If you like this type of look please read below where I detail how I achieved it. Feel free to use your favourite colours for this look. Let’s begin!

1. I started with a nail strengthening base coat and let it dry for 5 minutes. 
(Sally Hansen - Hard As Nails in ‘Clear’)

2. I painted a diagonal swipe using the lighter of my two colours (pink). Starting at mid-nail move the brush towards the center tip in an upward stroke. Allow this to dry for 5 minutes. 
 (L.A . Colors - Color Craze in ‘Electric Charge’ NP405)

*On my left hand the pink stroke is on the right side of the nail, on the right hand the pink is on the left. This is way your nails mirror each other when they are done.

 3. Using your darker colour (black) follow the same motion on the opposite side of your nail. It's important that you take your time with this step because the darker colour is less forgiving of mistakes. Let dry for 5 minutes.
(L.A. Colors - Nail Lacquer in 'Black Velvet' NP136)

4. *OPTIONAL* Add a glitter polish to the painted tips to add extra dimension and shine. Let dry for 5 minutes.
(Wet n Wild - Wild Shine in 'Hallucinate' 469)

5. Apply a generous top coat to your manicure and the free edge of your nail. (The free edge is the outside edge of your nail.) This keeps your manicure looking pristine for days. Re-apply your topcoat every other day to keep it looking shiny and to prevent any chips. Wait 10-15 minutes before using your hands to prevent smudges.

NOTE: This look was done using a free-handed method. If you have shaky hands you can tape off the section of nail you want to paint and when it is dry, peel the tape off. Re-tape the next side and do the same until the look is desired.

Well that's it for this look. I hope you enjoyed it!

Monday, March 28, 2011

When Life Gives You Lemons

Last night my manicure died. More specifically, my thumb nail. Just as I was headed to bed I nicked my nail against the desk and with horror (melodramatic, I know) I saw that the nail couldn't be salvaged. I went to bed upset having thought it would last a full week. (I did this look on Friday, March 25th, 2011.)

This morning I removed the polish from my nail and sat waiting until inspiration hit. A few days ago I purchased quite a bit of supplies (polishes, glitters, nail tools, etc) and decided I would try a new look out but only on my thumb. Below is the look I created. I will be re-polishing it with my purple/silver diagonal design from my first blog post.

When life gives you lemons - make lemonade, or in my case, a new nail design! (If only temporarily.) Enjoy!

Starting with a clear base coat I free handed the white tip french manicure. I then added a blue/green sparkle polish to the tip. Blue acrylic paint was used for the polka pots, with light blue craft glitter overlapping them. I finished with a generous topcoat to keep the glitters in place.

Thanks for reading!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

First Post & First Nail Design

I sat here for two minutes thinking of how to start this first blog post. This being my first ever blog, I wanted to begin with something witty and interesting. I'll have to settle with just honest - that's good too.

A little about my blog. My latest beauty obsession is nails. I have been a *gasp* nail-biter/nail-picker for quite a long time, however I have since 'kicked the habit' and started this blog with the intention of journaling my progress towards healthy, beautiful nails. 

YouTube actually jump-started this latest obsession. After watching endless videos of nail tutorials of various styles I decided I wanted to share my newfound passion with others also. Blogging is the perfect fit! Without further introduction, below is my first attempt at doing something other than a regular, one toned nail look or french manicure. Enjoy!

The look consists of silver holographic polish on the bottom half with a black and purple micro glitter polish on top. I did the diagonal swipe free hand and was pleased with how straight it turned out. I am excited for them to get long so I can try some fun, detailed looks in the next month or so.

Thanks for reading.