Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Nailuv "Boracay Beach" & Red Carpet Manicure "Shimmering Gown" Tips

Hi again, world!  It's been kind of a busy week, but I'm finally back to post pictures of the manicure I had in my last post:


You're probably thinking, "Uh, why so many pictures? Do you really need FOUR pictures to show off your nails?"  Well, yeah!  I found this color so interesting I had to keep trying to get more pictures. 

Nailuv's "Boracay Beach" is the perfect teal blue creme color.  Like, it literally walks the line between the two:  in inside light it is a little more jade-green-ish (such as in the first two pictures), while in outside light the blue tones show and almost make it look neon (such as in the last two pictures).  I used two coats, and while it is a slightly jelly-like gel polish and I COULD see some visible nail line in direct sunlight,  I thought it looked good enough to stop at just the two coats alone.  Three would probably make it more opaque, though.  This is the first Nailuv gel I used that slid around on my nails a teensy bit--it didn't really "shrink", but I noticed it tended to shy away from the side walls of my nails.  Not sure what was going on, but a quick brush over each painted nail just before curing it fixed any problems. 

At the tips of my nails I used one coat of  Red Carpet Manicure's "Shimmering Gown", which is a sheer teal blue-tinted gel with a light green/gold flecks of sparkles.   This color is hard to describe; since it has a blue base, the sparkly flecks sometimes carry a blue tone, although most of them appear to be a light spring green.  The shade of the sparkles, however, means that they sometimes catch the yellow in the light in such a way that they may appear to have flecks of gold as well.  Since this shade is pretty sheer, which means it's a great addition to any blue polish you may be bored of or may want to jazz up for some occasion.  If you layer it evenly, it may also be a great color enhancer/changer for many other shades of gel polish, too!

I wish I would have been able to get macro shots of this glitter gel, but it will probably have to wait until I paint a full nail with it.  For now, I think you can see the glitter best in the fourth and final picture.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Random... Summer Gel Polish Picks!

Hi again! I did a video showing some nice spring-themed gel polish shades a few months ago, and since summer is nearly officially here, I thought it was high time that I make another video with some summer-themed selections.

I did it rather quickly and after quite a few hours awake, so I'm sorry for any babbling going on--but hopefully this will give some idea of what awesome gel polish colors are available that are still on-trend for the summer time. 

There are two caveats I have overall with the selection of gel colors for the summer, which I mentioned only briefly at the very end of the video:

1. GREENS. I love green polishes, don't ask me why.  I wish there were more shades of vibrant greens available. Bright jade green, grass green, etc.

2. Neons--which always seem to be popular but finicky even in regular nail polish--are no exception when it comes to gels.  They can be thinner or more transparent than other shades of polish even by the same brand, or they may not be truly "BAM in your face" neon, if you know what I mean.  I think I have seen some gel brands come out with multiple "collections" of neon shades, so hopefully this is something that is being worked on and improved upon.  So that's yet another thing I would gladly buy, if it existed!

My next update will have photos of the manicure I'm sporting in this video, which is Nailuv's "Boracay Beach" and Red Carpet Manicure's "Shimmering Gown".  I don't have enough time at the moment, sorry!

Lastly, it appears on a quick search that some of the Red Carpet colors I selected are not available at Ulta right now--at least on their website--so I may have to do some digging to find the Gelish equivalents soon. 

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Gelish "Make A Difference"

With the warmer weather, I've been more into brighter colors.  Normally bright bubble-gum-like pink is not my thing, but I bought this color on clearance a while ago at Sally Beauty Supply, and it called out to me this week.

 Gelish "Make a Difference" is a great medium-toned pink: it's a very saturated pink, but it's not too bright or too pastel, and not too warm or too cool.  In fact, I feel like my pictures almost make it look like two different colors, because in natural lighting it plays off the blue tones of the sky, but in yellow lighting it appears more warm.   

It has a very fine gold shimmer throughout it; not enough to be metallic or show your brush strokes, but it's there.  Despite the warm-toned shimmer, it doesn't warm the overall color and make it look too salmon-like or coral.  Instead it just gives a little extra dimension, and while sometimes you do not see the shimmer at all (IE the second photo), sometimes it shimmers a nice gold (IE the first photo) or even kind of reflects the white in the lighting or the pink in the polish.  Because of the tiny shimmer, it reminds me a bit of OPI's "My Address is Hollywood", only the OPI color has a bit more of a muted/grey undertone to it. 

The formula for this color applied very well, with no migrating or shrinking anywhere, so I can't really say much else! 

I'll leave you with another attempted up-close macro shot I took to try to show off the shimmer in this polish.  I think I'm getting a little bit better?  You can even super-size the image for the full effect!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Red and Gold

Today I've got something different for me, but also something really popular.

That's Orly's "Rage", or rather, the Orly SmartGel version of "Rage".   "Rage" is a pretty iconic color for Orly, in my opinion.  You know how shimmery champagne eye shadows are "all the rage" and are marketed as having a multitude of benefits for your eye looks as well as being flattering on many skin tones?  Well, this is kind of like that color turned into a nail polish.  It pretty much is the perfect bubbly champagne color--in low lights it looks tan and even rosy, but in the direct light it shines white-gold (which means it's slightly gold toned, but also could pass for a silver tone shimmer, too).  I've included two different sunlight photos to attempt to show the variation in color that comes with different angles in the light--the first photo has more shadows, the second has more shine.

There's a few downsides to this polish, though: 

One is that it's pretty sheer. I should mention that I used three coats here, and you can still see visible nail line.  I've never tried the regular nail polish version of "Rage", but I was expecting something more full-coverage based on swatches I've seen online.  I think my disappointment stems from the fact that the shimmer/glitter does not stay evenly distributed and suspended well in gel, which seems to be a problem with glitter gels in general.  This whole polish is made up of various irregular shaped flecks of colored shimmer/glitter, after all.  As I was painting my nails, I could literally see the glitter starting to settle--as I got farther along, the gel my brush picked up got more and more clear.  I tried shaking it, but obviously I didn't do too great of a job. Maybe it would benefit from being stored upside down overnight? 

Two is that it shrinks back from the edges of your nails. This isn't quite apparent at first because of the color of the polish as well as the fact that it's partially sheer to begin with, so  I didn't notice that it was shrinking until I was on my third coat.  I combated the "shrink back" by painting just the tips of my nails before sealing it all off with my top coat, and later on I just cured two nails at a time to prevent the shrinking. 

Lastly, on my ring finger I used one layer of Nailuv's "Super Freaky" over  "Rage".  I've described it before when I bought it and did a haul with it, but this color's a true red sparkle shade in a slightly red-tinged gel.  It doesn't look too bad in the photos, but since I only used one layer, it came out a little patchy.  This applied as well as every other Nailuv polish I've used, but in the future I would definitely want to build up the opacity of this using more coats.  It kind of looks neat in the photos with "Rage" showing through in the light, though, doesn't it?