Sunday, 31 August 2014

I'm doing the 31 Day Challenge 2014!

I know I've said in the past that I will never again do a long, daily challenge. I just can't keep up.

... But so many people in my groups are doing the 31 Day Challenge this year that I couldn't not give it just one more try! Haha. If I can make it through grad school I can make it through a measly 31 day challenge, amirite?! (Honestly if I can make it even half way through I'll call it a success, but I'm really going to try my hardest to get all the way through.)

You can find out more about the challenge over at Chalkboard Nails, and More Nail Polish has put together an InLinkz link up so we can all connect.

I'm going to start September 1st which is tomorrow! On social media everything will be tagged with #31DC2014. Let me know if you're participating, I'd love to follow along with what you put together! :)

See you tomorrow!

Friday, 29 August 2014

My Julep 100 Degrees of Mystery Box Unboxing and Review!

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I had a gift card for Julep so when I saw that the mystery box for August was going to be complete mystery I decided to go for it. I'm not huge on the polishes they put in the mystery boxes (I find there are a lot of oranges - this month was no exception!) but it is a nice way for me to try some of Julep's beauty products that I wouldn't otherwise pick up. So let's see what I got this month!

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

My First Successful Attempt at One Stroke Flowers!

One stroke flowers are one of the techniques I've been putting off for a long time... For me it's a lot like watermarbling: something that looks gorgeous, something that people say is sooo easy, but then when I sit down to do it it turns out looking terrible.

This most recent attempt came about because I was asking around in one of my nail art groups for flower ideas. The lovely PiggyLuv linked to one of her one stroke designs and I told her there was NO WAY I would be able to do it since I had a love-hate relationship with one stroke designs. She linked me to one of her tutorials and I gave it a try and what do you know - patience (and a good teacher!) and I did a pretty decent job!

Let's take a better look!

Saturday, 23 August 2014

My August #HePicksMyPolish Mani - A Confusion of Witches!

So it's another month and time for another #HePicksMyPolish challenge! This month didn't go as smoothly as expected, and it's all the fault of teenage witches (and my terrible memory). Specifically: Sabrina and Hermione!

You see, my dad chose three colours for me to use: Julep Padma (a deep purple), Sally Hansen Lustre Shine Lava (an orange-gold shimmery duochrome) and Julep Hermione (a white crackle). This is the manicure I was challenged with, but as you can see it's not the one I ended up with...

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Julep Maven September 2014 Selections are Open - The Art Walk Collection!

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As pictured on Julep

The window opened for Julep Maven selections a couple of hours ago, so I've pulled together a look at all the boxes and some of the add-ons so you can see what's available for September! I think this is actually one of the most cohesive themes that Julep's put together in a while. If you're of the age where you're going back to school in September (whether that's high school or university) these seem like they would be fun colours to take with you. :)

Let's get into it!

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Jewel Toned Half Moon Nails with Julep and OPI

I had a family wedding the other week and decided to put together some fun jewel toned nails to make my outfit pop! Half moons seem to be a popular design choice for me these days and I think part of that is because they're just so easy to do and they look so nice.

Let's take a better look at the design!

Sunday, 17 August 2014

My Julep Maven (August 2014) Customized Boho Glam Box Unboxing, Swatch and Review! (Feat. Neha & Waleska)

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I have another box to share with you this week! Today: My August 2014 Julep Box! Technically I called this the Boho Glam box because I ended up with two out of the three Boho Glam products, but if you got a Julep box this month you know as well as I that the full Boho Glam boxes sold out in the first few hours (I still don't get the appeal of India!) so I put this box together in slightly more complicatedway. But we'll talk about that in a bit.

Julep put a great collection together this month, and I'm really happy with all the products I received (including the bonus gift!). I haven't felt that way in a long while. At this rate I might just give you a few more months of my money, Julep...

Let's take a look at the goodies in this box!

Rich Brown Gel Eye Glider, Neha & Wakeska as pictured on Julep

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Review of the Square Hue Aug 2014 Subscription Box! The Passport Collection: Beverly Hills

I have an exciting post to share with you today: I recently received my first box from Square Hue! If you don't know, Square Hue is a nail polish subscription box service out of the United States that creates and sends out three new, limited edition shades each month. Their polish are 5-free (no formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, camphor or formaldehyde resin), vegan-friendly and cruelty-free. On top of that they take a portion of their sales and donate them to organizations dedicated to helping others... Their current focus is on human trafficking. So you can paint your nails and feel good about helping others while you do it!

Part of what I like about this box is that you have no idea what you're going to get before it gets to you aside from the general theme. No previews! For August the theme was Beverly Hills, and it was part of The Passport Collection which is the series they've been working through in 2014. The shades this month were definitely luxe and rich, so let's take a better look!

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

My Top 5 Casual Nail Art Challenges

I love a good nail art challenge. It gives you a chance to try some new designs or brush up on some old skills, it gives you inspiration from places you've never thought of ("The theme is 'dogs in hats'?* Alright, I guess..."), and from a networking standpoint it gives you a chance to connect and linkshare with other bloggers. Win-win-win as far as I'm concerned!

That being said it's not often that I can get my butt in gear for any long-term or intensive challenges. 31 Day Challenges? Love 'em, but they are 100% not for me. I usually keep up for the first week and then drop off into the void.

With this in mind I've decided to put together a list of my personal Top 5 Casual Nail Art Challenges. These are challenges I've taken part in (or plan to take part in!) that don't require a long-term commitment. Generally for all of them you can complete fills for the challenges as frequently or infrequently as you like. That's my kind of challenge! :)

Friday, 8 August 2014

Review // Sally Hansen Cuticle Eraser + Balm

I've been eyeing the Sally Hansen Cuticle Eraser + Balm for quite a while now, and I was really excited when I finally picked it up. It smells like mint and cucumbers, the packaging is really cute, what could go wrong? Well, the product could be terrible, for a start. Terrible enough to be the first nail product I have actually thrown out after one use. "But how could that be!" you ask me? Well, let's talk about it...

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Glitter Gradient Peacock Nails

Who doesn't love glitter, and who doesn't love peacocks?! They're obviously a no-brainer combo for a manicure, and that's the logic I used when I put this look together. I picked up a few stamping plates from MoYou London a while ago but this is actually the first time I've used them, so let's take a better look!

Sunday, 3 August 2014

Swatch-It Sunday: Julep Grace

Julep Grace is one of those really sheer light pink polishes that at first glance seems like it wouldn't provide any actual coverage. But once you actually put it on you realize that it's a lovely clean and subtle polish that does leave some colour! :) What you see here is three coats, and it went on beautifully. As you can see it leaves a bit of VNL even with this many coats but I think that's to be expected considering it's a really sheer crelly polish. I think this would be gorgeous in a french mani.

I originally got Grace in a mystery box earlier this year and while it's only from 2013 I just checked and it's actually no longer available on Julep.com. Waaawonnnn. So if this is one you want to get your hands on you're going to have to turn to trade groups or ebay. Officially it's described as a "classic 'go-to' light pink sheer," and it's from Julep's Classic With a Twist colour profile.

Because this polish is so sheer it's easy to see how much you've used in the bottle, and it makes me sad to see that I've already started to make a dent in it! Do you find that you start using certain shades less often once you notice the level going down, or does that push you to use more and finish the bottle? I'm definitely more of the former!

Let me know what you think, and thanks for visiting!! xx

Saturday, 2 August 2014

July 2014 #instanails

And another month has passed... Where does the time go! Today I have my monthly round up of nail-related instagram posts to share with you. A few simple manis that never made it to the blog, and a few behind-the-scenes shots from others that did. Also quite a few mini hauls that I picked up along the way. :)

If you have questions about what specific shades or items are you can check the originals on instagram or leave me a comment here and I'll let you know. And as always, feel free to leave links to your own instagram account in the comments of this post so I can check it out. :)

Which look from the ones above do you like the best? I'd love to hear!

Thanks for visiting!! xx

Friday, 1 August 2014

Finger Food's Theme Buffet: Rainbow Gem Nails

Gems can be a funny thing because when you get them in a wheel they all look like they're the same... same size, same shape, just different colours. But when you put them on the nail you might start to notice a difference! Case in point: this wheel had extra tiny red gems and larger-than-normal pink gems. :/ Kind of an annoying thing when you're trying to use a line of gems to create a rainbow line for a challenge fill! Ah well. Sometimes we just gotta roll with it, right? :) Let's focus on the positive and take a better look at my fill for this week's Finger Food's Theme Buffet: Rainbow!