Friday, October 28, 2011

Halloween Mani II

Today's mani is the second of (probably) three Halloween manis for this year. I guess great minds think a like because last night, I saw that Sarah Louise of Spellbinding Nails did a black widow mani as well. I really love her sparkly webs! Now onto my take.

For the base, I used OPI Skull and Glossbones. The name is intended to be pirate-y, but it works for Halloween too! This is a light grey creme with just a hint of brown. It applied easily, and was neither too thick nor too thin. I used three thin coats to get rid of all patchiness, but I think you could use two thicker ones and be just fine.

For the stamping, I used KleanColor Black and Bundle Monster plate BM13 for the stamping, and I finished up with red rhinestones. In real life, I am NOT a fan of spiders, or indeed any bugs, but I'm not going to let that stop me from taking the opportunity for some cool, Halloween themed nail art!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Halloween Mani I

I love Halloween, which seems to be a pretty common "affliction" among beauty bloggers. Speaking for myself (and I suspect more than a few others), it gives me a chance to dress up in the kind of over the top stuff that get's you funny looks the rest of the year. Plus, as I've already mentioned, fall is my favorite season, so a super fun holiday in the middle of fall?! Love it! I haven't had time to do quite as many Halloween manis as I'd like, but I do have a few that I'll be showing y'all over the rest of this week.

As an opener, I have this simple accent nail mani using a fun Halloween polish. Fantasy Makers Creepy Pumpkin is an orange jelly base packed with fine orange and yellow glitter (mostly orange). It went on easily and had a medium dry time with Out the Door on top. It's pretty sheer, as I used three coats here and you can still see through it a little. I think I'll use a similarly colored base next time. For my accent nail, I used three coats of Creepy Pumpkin over one coat of Wet 'n' Wild Black Creme.

Creepy Pumpkin and Night Glow are the only Fantasy Makers polishes I picked up, as the others seemed to be just plain dark colors or glitter in black. Am I missing anything? Were there others that you loved that I'm over looking?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Depression Awareness Manicure

While October is drawing to a close, I still want to mention that it is Depression Awareness Month. Scrangie did a post to spread the word and featured green nail polish, since green is the awareness color for depression (among other things).

I have been dealing with depression on and off since I was a teenager. I feel it's important to talk about depression to help remove the stigma associated with it. Depression can be very isolating for many reasons, which only increases misunderstanding about what it is and how it impacts people. I hope this blog post will help increase my (few) readers' knowledge and understanding.

So, I'd like to follow Scrangie's example by providing some fact about depression from the National Institute for Mental Health:

What is depression?
Everyone occasionally feels blue or sad. But these feelings are usually short-lived and pass within a couple of days. When you have depression, it interferes with daily life and causes pain for both you and those who care about you. Depression is a common but serious illness.

Signs and Symptoms Include:
Persistent sad, anxious, or "empty" feelings
Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism
Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness
Irritability, restlessness
Loss of interest in activities or hobbies once pleasurable, including sex
Fatigue and decreased energy
Difficulty concentrating, remembering details, and making decisions
Insomnia, early-morning wakefulness, or excessive sleeping
Overeating, or appetite loss
Thoughts of suicide, suicide attempts
Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems that do not ease even with treatment.

For my Depression Awareness Month manicure, I decided to do a green water marble.

Right hand

I started with a single coat of OPI Mermaid's Tears, and I did the marbling in OPI Here Today...Aragon Tomorrow, Wild and Crazy Colors Erie, and Mermaid's Tears. Obviously, I'm still working on this technique. It's oddly appropriate to me that this has some flaws, since one thing I have to deal with when coping with depression is not demanding perfection of myself. This is the best I could do at that moment, and that's enough.

Right hand

In closing, here are some things that the NIMH recommends if you want to help someone with depression:
Offer emotional support, understanding, patience, and encouragement.
Talk to him or her, and listen carefully.
Never dismiss feelings, but point out realities and offer hope.
Never ignore comments about suicide, and report them to your loved one's therapist or doctor.
Invite your loved one out for walks, outings and other activities. Keep trying if he or she declines, but don't push him or her to take on too much too soon.
Provide assistance in getting to the doctor's appointments.
Remind your loved one that with time and treatment, the depression will lift.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

What Goes with Digit Decor?

I've decided it's time for another Polyvore collection showing off my fall style. While my previous Polyvore collection showcased items that I really like, this one is more my actual style. The drapey fabrics, soft lines, fall colors, and slightly hippie style are totally me.

Fall Hippie Style

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Fissures Fail Mani

I promise there are some non-stereotypically fall colored manicures coming soon, but not this time!
Left hand
The base color for this mani is China Glaze Papaya Punch, a very bright, but not neon, orange creme. The color is great. It's slightly more toward the yellow side of orange, but still has cool undertones, which makes it a good fit for my skin tone. This polish came out as part of their summer collection, but I got it late on clearance, which might account for the atrocious texture. It was extremely thick, even after I added thinner, and it was very hard to get it to spread evenly. I've read other reviews that say it was great, so maybe it's just my bottle, but ugh.

Right hand

Next, I added KleanColor Brown Crackle. I'm normally quite impressed with the quality of KleanColor polishes, given their bargain price, but this is absolutely the exception. I'd already been told that, unlike most of the recent crackles, this should be applied over wet polish. So, I worked one nail at a time, adding my second coat of Papaya Punch followed immediately by Brown Crackle. As you can see, it still didn't crack very well. As usual, I did my right hand first, and learned that thick coats don't work well at all, so the left's a little better. Furthermore, the crackle started chipping off after only about 24 hours, despite the Out the Door topcoat over it. Boo!

I'm really disappointed, because I can think of lots of lovely uses for a nice brown crackle. I think Papaya Punch may still be salvageable with the addition of much more thinner, but overall, this was a really frustrating manicure. Have you tried Papaya Punch? What was your experience with it?

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Another Great Giveaway

Sarah Louise of Spellbinding Nails does awesome nail art, combining stamping, freehand details, and lovely color schemes. Her 1,000 follower giveaway includes a plethora of interesting stamping and nail art stuff. Check it out!
Ends October 31

Great Giveaways

I've just finished catching up on reading all the blogs I follow (sorry for so few comments, but I was really behind - I had 188 posts in my Google Reader list). Here's a nice giveaway I found nestled in my list of neglected reading.

Ice Queen's Nail Parlor is giving away the shimmery half of the Color Club Back to Boho collection. These are some beautiful fall polishes.
Ends November 12, 2011

Friday, October 14, 2011

Fall Flakies Mani

Sorry for the extended silence, but getting up to speed at my new second job is kicking me in the posterior.  Typing for several hours isn't really the best precursor to coming home and typing up blog posts. I'm building up my stamina though!

I'm having to fight the urge to title all of my posts Fall Something because that's pretty much all I'm interested in right now. We've had some gorgeous fall weather for the last couple of weeks. Today's all grey and rainy, but I'm hoping we'll get back to blue skies and crispy air soon. This mani was inspired by the drifting fall leaves!

The base color is Maybelline Coloroma Cocoa Motion, which is a purplish-reddish-brown shimmer. It wasn't impressive in the bottle, but on the nail, I almost didn't want to put anything over it. The formula was a little thin and wanted to run away, but it was opaque in two coats and looked great.

Over Cocoa Motion, I'm wearing Maybelline Coloroma Sonic Sunset. This polish has a very sheer orange base with flakes that shift colors from red and orange to yellow and green. The base is sheer enough that it didn't have a lot of impact on this dark base color. I've long had my eye on some of the harder to get and more expensive flakies, and while there are some of those I'd still love to get my hands on, for $0.33 this is a great substitute.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Carmine Combination Manicure

I have officially entered fall colors mode. While I don't believe in arbitrary rules about what colors are "appropriate" for a given time of year, I do find that the weather and other factors make me more inclined to wear certain colors than others. Fall is my favorite time of year in lots of ways, including the fact that I love all the rich colors usually associated with it, so I'm pretty inclined to want to wear them.

As I mentioned in my last post, I've taken on a second job, which is cutting into my nail art time. So, you should probably expect to see more accent nail mani's like this one. I find an accent nail is a quick way to add a little something extra when I don't have time for more elaborate decoration.

The primary color for this is China Glaze Mommy Kissing Santa, which is a rich, deep, red shimmer from last year's holiday collection. I would say its undertones are slightly cool, but but not by much. It applied easily; although it was very patchy and streaky after one coat, the second smoothed right out to a flawless finish. For my accent nail, I used Sinful Colors Rich in Heart. This is a dark brown (or maybe even black) base with tons of red shimmer. In the bottle it looks like the two are pretty separate, but on the nail, the overall effect looks like a very dark red. The shimmer is pretty much the same color as the shimmer in Mommy Kissing Santa, which made them a great pairing. This is one of those colors that I liked in the bottle, but love on the nail.

I know a lot of people like a very high contract accent nail, like an orange among blues, and I can appreciate that look as well, but there's just something satisfying to me about a nice monochromatic combination like this. What do you think? Do you like your accent nail to blend or pop?

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Nail History - 1915 Edition

This is a small portion of a full page ad for the Davison-Nicholson Co., which billed itself as "Athens Busiest Store." The ad originally appeared in the October 15, 1915 edition of the Banner Sunday Morning. I really like the artwork.

Click to enlarge

The nail polish advertised here is still the powder or paste used to buff the nails and give them a shiny finish. The rice powder immediately following the nail polish may be a powder that was used under the free edge of the nail to make it appear whiter. I know that such a product was in use in this period, but I don't know what it was made of.

You can see the full page ad this is taken from here.