Saturday, November 10, 2012

Dior Acapulco + Lush Lacquer Hey Jack!


Sorry a thousand times for being so slack with my blog. Life etc has gotten in the way a bit and while I have painted my nails I haven't had time to post them here.

This is Dior Acapulco, a warm, primary yellow creme. I'm not generally one to spend $39 on a single bottle of polish but I've been hunting for a decent yellow and decided to treat myself - this is my first "premium" polish :) For this manicure I first painted my nails white (with Face of Australia's Cool Cotton) so that I wouldn't have any visible nail line - I believe Acapulco is slightly jelly-like on its own. I used three coats of Acapulco to get a completely even finish as it streaked slightly on the first two coats. With three coats though it's nice and even and dries very shiny.

Three coats of Acapulco over white with top coat.

A day after applying this manicure I went to visit my parents and I had a package waiting for me - with nail polish in it! And not just any old polish, but two gorgeous colours from Lush Lacquer! My gorgeous cousin Bek had ordered them for me for my birthday. I had two try out Hey Jack! straight away. Hey Jack! is from the halloween collection and is a mix of tiny hex and bar white glitter, different sized black hex glitter, small shiny orange hexes, and medium matte orange hexes. This is one dabbled coat on my ring finger, and I think the colours go really nicely with the yellow, even though it's not halloween anymore. I might try this over Revlon Royal next time :)

One dabbled coat of Hey Jack! on ring finger.
The formula on Hey Jack! was excellent, not thick or gloopy at all and packed with glitter, I didn't have to fish for any of the glitters to get them all on my nail. It does dry quite textured and needs either a really thick top coat like Gelous (which I don't have but am going to buy) or multiple layers of top coat.

Robyn x

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Sportsgirl Arctic Glamour


Another lovely bright creme for you today. This is Sportsgirl Arctic Glamour.

I'm not really sure why this is called Arctic Glamour, as it seems more of a 'hot' colour to me, but this is a saturated turquoise which is more green-leaning in real life but surprisingly does not give me lobster hands. Application on this was ok. I didn't give the bottle enough of a shake before I tried my first coat and so it came out a bit watery with clumps of pigment, which might actually be an interesting look, but  after a vigorous shake it's very even, with a nice shiny finish. This is three coats with topcoat but the topcoat didn't make a huge amount of difference to the shine (I just wear it out of habit otherwise my manicures would never last more than a day). This colour is currently in stock at Sportsgirl but if you want it it's probably best to head down to grab one sooner rather than later, as Sportsgirl tends to change their colours fairly often.

Robyn x

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Ulta3 Eighties Fushsia (sp)


Oh gosh. I love this polish. I already gushed about it in my skittles mani, but holy CRAP is this polish ever the most wonderful piece of $2 polish magic I have ever had the pleasure of randomly pulling out of a plastic bin.

Thin, even, buttery, perfect, perfect brush, opaque in two coats, and a ridiculously flattering bright-without-being-neon pink which made me go "hey, maybe I should wear more pink". Sure, they spelt "fuchsia" wrong on the bottle, but I'm willing to let it slide because this polish is glorious. If it weren't for the fact that I'm trying to wear everything in my stash at least once before doing a repeat mani, I would wear this again for sure. This is two coats with top coat.

I should add that this is the Australian-made EF, and the newer PRC version is (I think) a bit more purple looking than this. However, you might still be able to find this - I got this only a couple of weeks ago at Target on Bourke Street in Melbourne.

Robyn x

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Ulta3 Skittles!


Another skittle manicure today, I think this colour combination works a lot better than the last one. I used all Ulta3 polishes for this manicure and they are:

Silver Glitter, Frog Prince, Blue Marlin, Honolulu, Spring Break and Eighties Fushsia (I know it's not spelt like that but that's what it says on the bottle!)

Application on these varied. Eighties Fuchsia was the BEST. Buttery, even, self leveling, perfect brush, made me want to happy dance, opaque in two thin coats. Spring Break was ok but had a DREADFUL brush, weirdly fluffy on the end which made it fricking difficult to make a neat line. Honolulu was a bit of a gluggy nightmare and needed four coats for full opacity. Frog Prince was ok but a little thick and was opaque in two thick coats, as was Blue Marlin. Silver glitter smells frickin WEIRD and was super thick but not as gritty as I was expecting, only needed the regular one coat of top coat to smooth out, and was super dense - I only used one coat on each nail. Ulta3 recently moved production of their polishes from Australia to China, and many people have commented that the formulation has suffered somewhat from the move. Eighties Fuchsia is the only polish in this manicure which was made in Australia (I only bought it  a couple of days ago, but you can still find the odd Aussie Ulta3 here and there) and it had the best formulation. Go figure...

Below is before I put glitter and top coat on:

Thumb to pinkie - Blue Marlin, Frog Prince, Honolulu, Eighties Fuchsia, Spring Break.
Blue Marlin and Honolulu had quite a glossy finish, Frog Prince slightly less so, and Eighties Fuchsia and Spring Break had the same slightly rubbery finish as Sunset Pink.

And here it is with glitter!

The top photo is more colour accurate (surprisingly so, as I didn't even have to colour correct it - maybe having so many bright colours in the one image helped the camera's sensor calibrate properly or sumfink?) but yay! Glitter! I love me some glitter.

Robyn x

Monday, October 15, 2012

Essie Smooth Sailing


A gorgeous, gorgeous Essie for you today. This is Smooth Sailing, which I picked up with my other Essie in Adelaide. Smooth Sailing is a dusty cornflower blue with tiny glass flecks in it - they look silver from a distance but if you look reeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaally closely you can actually see that they're a mix of pale pink and pale blue flecks.

Application was glorious! I have heard time and again from many bloggers how much of a joy it is to do a manicure with Essies and I have to say, it's all true. This picture (as are all my pictures) is with absolutely no cleanup. The brush was perfect and made it super easy to get a neat line, and it was the perfect consistency, like butter. I bought 14 Essies from Ozsale when they had their Essie sale (and my bank balance hated me for it!) and can't wait for them to arrive :)

Robyn x

Saturday, October 13, 2012

China Glaze Paper Chasing + Lush Lacquer Lite Brite


A super bright and cheerful mani today - my flatmate said my nails looked like Christmas :)

This is three coats of China Glaze Paper Chasing, a sheer apple green shimmer, and one dabbled coat of Lush Lacquer Lite Brite, a clear base with small brightly coloured square and hex glitter, large pink hexes and tiny holographic glitter. To get this coverage I swirled the brush around in the bottle, then plonked the brush horizontally onto the nail to get all the glitter on, and didn't swipe as this just wipes the glitter right off again. I've had Lite Brite for maybe three months and in that time I think the large pink hexes have "tacoed" slightly (curled up, like a taco shell) so I needed a lot of top coat (three coats I think!) to smooth out any pointy edges. Still, it's a super pretty glitter and I'll give this another go over a different coloured base - although next time I might try and flip the hexes so the taco-ey points are pointing into the nail bed :)

Robyn x

PS Lush Lacquer is available at Etsy and they currently have Lite Brite in stock. Shipping can be a little slow as this is a small mother and daughter team making the polishes but they are really good at keeping customers updated through their Facebook page.

PPS I bought Lite Brite for my own use. No one has sent me free polish to review...yet!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Ulta3 Sunset Pink


Another Ulta3 for you today. This is Sunset Pink, an intense blue-toned pink creme (it kind of reminds me of those Redskin lollies you used to get as a kid - I wonder if they're still available? They're delicious!).

Application on this was not awesome - it's quite a thick and gluggy polish and did not want to level on the nail at all, and I actually ended up with a weird lump on the tip of my thumbnail where the excess polish did not smooth out. The finish on this without topcoat is not quite gloss, not quite matte - sort of an in between rubbery look, which I quite liked, but ended up using top coat to try and even out the lumps. I might try and add thinner to this so I can wear it without top coat in the future.

Robyn x

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Ulta3 Copper


Apologies for not posting for a couple of days. I have a little admission to make - I usually get a backlog of posts (or manicures) and then write and schedule a whole bunch of posts, because I don't have time to post every time I do my nails.

Anyway, this is Ulta3 Copper, a bright, shiny, quite orangey metallic copper. I'm pretty sure this is two coats, and application was great, very easy, self levelling and not brush strokey. Not really the right colour for this time of year (Spring in the Southern Hemisphere, that is), but the weather in Melbourne has been so shocking lately that it almost works.

 Robyn x

Monday, October 8, 2012

China Glaze Strawberry Fields + Revlon Sheer Seafoam + Revlon Radiant

I went into Priceline recently and they had reduced all their Revlon polishes to $9.95 so I picked up Sheer Seafoam and Radiant. Also, the first anniversary of my grandmother's passing happened recently as well. She was my last surviving grandparent and we were quite close, so I did a manicure that I think she would have enjoyed - she loved pink and sparkles :)

The pink nails are (surprise, surprise) two coats of Strawberry Fields. I hadn't worn this before and I'm glad I finally did - this is a gorgeous polish! I couldn't really get the colour accurate in the photo even with colour correcting, it's quite a vivid cool pink loaded with gold shimmer. For the thumb and ring fingers I did one coat of Sheer Seafoam, one coat of Radiant and then two more coats of Sheer Seafoam. I have to admit that even though SSF was labelled as such, I wasn't expecting it to be *that* sheer! I might have to mix it with a creme if I wear it by itself. I'm not looking forward to removing the glitter...I keep forgetting to buy PVA glue to make a peel off basecoat though.

 Robyn x

PS If you're lucky enough to still have them, go hug your grandparents x

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Sugar Coated Skittles!


I have a super bright and cheerful spring skittle mani for you today! I bought some polishes at Sportsgirl and at first thought I might do a gradient but was feeling too lazy so added a couple of OPIs to make a five finger skittle...then topped it all off with a sugary, shiny coat of China Glaze White Cap.

My hands look kinda weird in this photo...I had to colour correct the shiz out of this to get the colours somewhere approximating accurate but it was impossible (for me at least) to get every one right. My thumb is two coats of OPI Jade Is The New Black, a blue toned mid green creme. Index is three coats Sportsgirl Sunflower, a bright, slightly green leaning yellow with yellow shimmer. Middle finger is two coats of Sportsgirl Tangerine, a mid orange crelly (creme/jelly). Ring finger is two coats of Sportsgirl Va Va Voom, a vivid fuchsia with blue micro shimmer, and pinkie is two coats of OPI A Grape Fit, a dark lilac creme. All nails have one coat of China Glaze White Cap over the top, then my favourite Sally Hansen top coat. These polishes were all easy to apply and opaque in two coats, except Sunflower, although I've yet to meet a nice two-coater yellow. I've only ever worn A Grape Fit as a full mani but I like all these polishes so much that I will have to wear them all as full manis soon!

Robyn x

Friday, October 5, 2012

Max Factor Purple Haze + Ozotic 528


Today's manicure is a multichromic, glittery beauty. Max Factor Purple Haze is a dark, almost dusty purple creme which went on in two fairly cooperative coats (I HATE the brush that comes with this polish though - it's in the same bottle as Fantasy Fire. Stupid tiny mini splayed out brush which makes control impossible, hence the gross messy cuticles). On top I did three coats of Ozotic 528, a gorgeous multichrome glitter which shifts from turquoise to fuchsia to (at extreme angles) an orange leaning gold.

Check out that shift! It's even more noticeable in real life.

A photo with flash to show Purple Haze underneath.

Unfortunately 528 has been discontinued and I don't know if it's available anymore.

Robyn x

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Ulta3 Pale Dahlia + OPI A Grape Fit


Firstly, apologies for my ravaged cuticles. I've recently begun swimming before work a few days a week, and the chlorine is playing havoc with my skin. Might be time to finally splurge on a jar of Lemony Flutter!

Today's manicure is a konadicure with Ulta3 Pale Dahlia and OPI A Grape Fit.

As with Soft Hydrangea, Pale Dahlia was a PITA to apply, even more so. This was four ridiculously gloppy and uncooperative coats. I think a dose of thinner is required here. The shimmer in this is more noticeable than in Soft Hydrangea, but I'm not totally in love with the colour - I don't think these pale, fairy floss pinks really suit me. I stamped over with OPI a Grape Fit to try and hide some of the unevenness in the polish, which I think also made it look nicer. A Grape Fit is not a great stamping polish - as you can see it's very sheer and kind of patchy - but I actually liked the look, it looks sort of soft and antiqued.

Unfortunately I badly dinged two of the nails on my right hand about half an hour after doing this while trying my hair up (I think the four coats of PD were still soft) so this came off the same day I put it on.

Robyn x

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Ulta3 Soft Hydrangea + China Glaze Papaya Punch


Today's manicure is from the Ulta3 Spring Pastels collection, with a bit of dotting on top.

Soft Hydrangea is a super pale, turquoise-blue creme with a hint of sneaky silver shimmer which is basically invisible on the nail. Application wasn't awesome, this was thick and gloppy and net very self levelling, and needed three coats to become fully opaque, but it is so super pretty that it was worth it.

I dotted the ring finger and drew little love hearts on the middle finger in China Glaze Papaya Punch with a toothpick - I do have dotting tools but was at my parent's house when I did this. I love dotticures - it's a super easy way to do nail art, and you can get some really cute patterns.

Robyn x

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Ulta3 Crazy


Today I have another Ulta3 to show you. This is a colour called Crazy. I picked it up on a whim (as you do when bin diving for Ulta3s :)). This is an intense orange jelly with sparkly green shimmer (hence the name I guess!). I didn't realise the shimmer was green until I swatched it on a stick. Until then I figured it was just a bright colour but after seeing it swatched I had to wear it as a mani.

Gorgeous colour, no? The green colour in the shimmer isn't terribly noticeable but it's still a really beautiful colour, and I got a lot of compliments on this. I'm glad I finally wore it!

Robyn x

Monday, October 1, 2012

CH Nails Magnetic 60

My boyfriend and I had our first anniversary a little while ago. We agreed to not do big extravagant presents but to get something small for each other to mark the occasion, as we're both living on strict budgets (he's a full time student and I only just started working full time after deferring my studies this semester). It was a lovely sunny day so we went down to Studley Park Boat House (Melbournians, if you haven't been there - go! It's gorgeous!) and I was presented with this:

Magnetic nail polish! I have the most awesome boyfriend ever!

This is a brand called CH Nails. Neither of us were able to find much information about them (he spent a while researching on the internet before buying these, bless!). He got them for me right before I finally found the Ulta3 magnetics, after listening to me moan that I couldn't find them anywhere - how adorable is that? Well now I never have to buy another magnetic polish...

This is CH Nails number 60 (there's no names, just numbers), using two of the magnets from the set that BF very thoughtfully included with the polishes. The blur on my ring finger is meant to be a starburst, but I'm not very good with the magnets just yet. More practice is required - luckily I have another 11 colours to try out :D

Robyn x

Friday, September 28, 2012

NEWSFLASH - Essie on sale on Ozsale!

Exactly what the title says! Essie is on sale at Ozsale until Tuesday the 2nd of October, for $7 a bottle for nail varnish (including Matte About You!) and reduced prices for treatments, lip glosses and lotions. I just bought a bunch of polishes :)

Robyn x

*I am in no way affiliated with Ozsale. I just like buying cheap polish.

Butter LONDON Pillar Box Red + Chi Chi Crystal Top Coat


Today I have to show you my first Butter LONDON Polish, Pillar Box Red. This came free with the September Issue of InStyle. I've seen and liked and lusted after a lot of Butter LONDONs but never bought any because of the price.

Pillar Box Red is an orangey red creme. Application was very easy and I got full opacity at two coats.

With Flash - I think this is more colour accurate.

After a couple of days I put Chi Chi Crystal Top Coat on top, a multi coloured flakie. The rainbows were very pretty on the red!

All in all a nice red, but a bit too orange leaning for my tastes. I still prefer my LA Splash red.

Robyn x

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Essence Choose Me! + Max Factor Fantasy Fire

Fantasy Fire!

Every nail blogger has been coveting this polish since Max Factor released it last year. Allegedly it's a dupe for the mythical and pretty much impossible to obtain Clarins 230. When FF was originally released it was only available in the UK and many Aussies ponied up ridiculous amounts of money on eBay to grab a bottle (if they didn't have a Brit buddy to send them a bottle). I salivated over hundreds - nay, thousands - of photos of FF but refused to pay a lot of money to get it. Well a few weeks ago I went into a chemist (the same one where I got Ulta3 Magnetic in Hypnotic) and there it was! Turns out Max Factor have now released the line which includes FF in Australia so it's quite widely available here now. I bought two bottles because they're pretty tiny (8ml each) and at $5.95 a bottle they're not the cheapest, but still not as expensive as buying OPI in David Jones here.

For this mani I layered three coats of FF over Essence Choose Me!, a dark blue shimmer. I think next time I might try putting it over a creme, I think the shimmer kind of interfered with FF a bit.

Check out that colour shift! My nails were uber distracting while I wore this.

FF should be available wherever Max Factor is sold - Target, Priceline and many pharmacies.

Robyn x

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Essie Sand of a Beach

Today I have my first Essie to show you!

I went to Adelaide for my sister's birthday a couple of weeks ago and went into one of those fragrance/cosmetic clearance stores (I'm sure it's a chain and they have a name, but I cannot remember it, sorry!). They had a few brands of polish, mostly Revlon, Maybelline and Sally Hansen, then I spied a little bin of Essies right up the back. I got a mini cube set and two full sized bottles, and today I am showing Sand of a Beach.

Sand of a Beach is a fairly neutral, perhaps ever-so-slightly yellow-leaning nude, with a gorgeous pink shimmer/pearl which refuses to show up in my photos :( It's quite subtle, and sort of appears as a flash depending on the viewing angle.

This polish is quite sheer and I used three coats (and top coat) to get it fully opaque, but this would probably work well as a one-coater for a French Manicure. It's a lovely work appropriate polish and the formula was great - smooth, runny but not too watery, and easy to apply. I think I'll have to start hunting down more Essies!

Robyn x

Monday, September 17, 2012

Ulta3 Blossom Fever

Another Ulta3 polish to show you today!

A couple of months ago I bought a bottle of Blossom Fever to use as a work polish. Unfortunately when I got home and opened the bottle, I found this:

D'oh! I've never had this happen with an Ulta3 and I have 30 or so bottles. I posted on the Ulta3 Facebook page and they sent me out a new bottle, which was very nice of them, considering it's only $2.00 I would have just gone out and bought another one :)

Ulta3 recently moved their production from Australia to China, and this means that a lot of the polishes now have a slightly different formulation and look. The bottle I bought was made in China, but the replacement I got was an old made in Australia one. Unfortunately I don't have a comparison yet but will do one when I get a chance. I can see a slight difference in the bottle but am not sure how it will translate on the nail.

Blossom Fever (Aussie version) is a pale, slightly pink-toned nude, with a tiny bit of pink shimmer in it. I think this is three coats plus top coat - it's slightly uneven in application but nothing too tricky. Two thin coats would probably give an even sheer coverage but I prefer the opaque look. This is a perfect work appropriate manicure :)

Robyn x

Sunday, September 16, 2012


Oh-kay. So I finally figured out how to add Google Friend Connect to my blog, so now it should be heaps easier to follow me and receive notifications when I post. Also, this means I can start my first follower giveaway - I think once I hit fifty followers I'll have something up for grabs :)

Robyn x

Friday, September 14, 2012

Ulta3 Magnetics - Hypnotic

I finally found Ulta3 magnetics!

I must be the worst nail polish hunter in the has taken me months to find these polishes, then I found them at a chemist which I walk past all the time. I found Hypnotic at the Soul Pattinson Chemist on Bourke Street, near the corner of William Street, in the Melbourne CBD.

Hypnotic is a dark reddish purple in the bottle. Also, check out my "nail board" - it's just a bit of thick cardboard I use to protect my desk when I'm painting. The big splodges are from stamping!

Once magnetised, it goes a gorgeous dark berry sort of colour with loads of shimmer with paler streaks which shift as you move your nails.

This polish is pretty tricky to apply. You have to put down a thickish coat (on top of an already dry coat), then while it's still wet you have to hold the magnet just above the nail. Ulta3 magnets are simply stuck onto a piece of cardboard so it can be tricky to get the magnet at the right height. I had a few mishaps - once I held the magnet too far away and the pattern didn't appear, another time I got polish on the magnet from holding it too close. You also have to do one nail at a time and since I'm a bit of a klutz I did smudge a couple of nails.

The finished result on my nails (with a permanent marker streak on my index finger - oops! I was labelling swatch sticks). You can see how tiny my nails are compared to my swatch stick :) My Sally Hansen Insta Dri top coat probably wasn't the best choice for this manicure as you can see it's dragged some of the colour - next time I will probably put a normal top coat and then the Insta Dri. Also, on the nails I fudged, instead of taking everything off and starting again, I just whacked another coat on top and went on my merry way. I think the polish must be quite slow drying because I went to bed five hours later and woke up the next morning with pseudo-sheet marks on those nails (the top coat was dry but the polish underneath was still soft). Next time I won't be so lazy!

What so you guys think of magnetics? I personally quite like the effect. Everyone makes magnetics now so you should be able to find some cool colours out there!

Robyn x

Friday, September 7, 2012

Color Club Love 'Em Leave 'Em


Today, my all-time favourite work appropriate polish, the glorious Color Club Love 'Em Leave 'Em. This is a warm-toned nude/beige with a stunning yet subtle scattered holo effect. Great formula too, smooth and flowy and opaque in two coats. This is two coats topped with Sally Hansen Insta Dri Non Chip Top Coat.

My nails are quite long at the moment - usually I wouldn't let them grow any longer than this because it gets too hard to play guitar and ukulele - but I'm going away for a few days so will let them grow out a bit. My next post will be about base coats and what is my favourite at the moment.

 - Robyn x

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Collection By Bloom Saigon


Today I have another Collection By Bloom polish to show you. This is Saigon, a pale lavender with icy white/very pale blue pearl. I did these nails quickly during a break at work, so luckily this polish didn't cause any problems, going opaque in two easy coats. Unfortunately even after wrapping my tips with base coat, the first coat of colour and top coat (my standard Sally Hansen), this chipped after only a day. On the plus side this was the easiest polish to remove EVER and came off with a minimum of fuss.

I think this would be really pretty as the base to some stamping in dark purple, so may try that out some time.

 - Robyn x

Monday, September 3, 2012

Work Appropriate Stamping!


Today's post is in response to a request from issta from mel my issta, that I post some Konadicures.

For those not in the know, Konad is a brand which makes a whole bunch of nail art stamps. They're a really easy way to get designs and pictures on your nails without having to rely on a steady hand or wicked brush skills. Lacquerized has a fantastic tutorial on how to Konad your nails, so I'll just show you my efforts. :)

For this manicure I needed to do something work appropriate (my work stipulates "neutral colours" and actually prohibits "multi-coloured nail art" but I made it subtle :) ) so I used colours really similar to each other. The base colour I used is China Glaze Dress Me Up from the Hunger Games Collection. It's a mauvey sort of pinkish beige (yes my skills of description are amazing) creme which is opaque in two coats. For the stamped design I used China Glaze Poetic from the Romantique Collection. Poetic is a rosy metallic chrome. Konad does sell polishes for stamping, but a lot of "normal" polishes are good for stamping too - chromes, metallics, dark cremes, and anything which would be opaque in one coat. For this manicure I used a design from plate m73.

Konading takes a bit of practice, but once you've gotten used to it it's actually really easy, and takes way, waaayyyy less time than painting on nail art. Win!

 - Robyn x

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Collection By Bloom Osaka


I was in Target a few days ago browsing the cosmetics section (which I do far more often than I'd care to admit) and came across a bunch of Collection by Bloom polishes reduced to $3.56 as the line is being discontinued. I picked up four, and have one of them to show you today.

Osaka is a deep reddish purple glass flecked beauty. In the bottle it seemed like it might have a bit of a duochrome shift to gold going on, but that doesn't appear on the nail. I used three coats to get a completely opaque and glowy look which is super sparkly in the sunlight. One warning, this polish is kind of gritty (it even felt gritty when I was brushing it on) and needed two coats of top coat to be completely smooth.

Pretty! Good formula too, easy to apply and no cuticle flooding (I didn't do any clean up at all for the photo above, and I don't have the world's steadiest hands). I would recommend a bin dive at Target before these are all gone.

 - Robyn x

Friday, August 31, 2012

OPI A Grape Fit + Gold Shatter + Essence Make It Golden

Sorry sorry sorry for the lack of posts this week. I've just worked six days in a row so haven't had a lot of free time. Luckily I have still painted my nails a few times so I have some new manicures to show :)

I was looking for a pale lilac/lavender creme which I could wear at work, and saw OPI a Grape Fit on sale online for about $10 so got that - it's one of very few OPIs in my collection as I refuse to pay $24.95 for a bottle of nailpolish which sells for a third of that in the States.

Unfortunately A Grape Fit was a lot darker than I thought it would be so I can't wear this at work but I will still wear it happily out of work. It is a very pretty colour, and goes on nicely in two easy coats.

I need to learn to leave cremes alone once I've done a manicure...I always seem to end up putting glitter or something else on top of them...I really do like how cremes look but I think I get bored too quickly! The day after putting on A Grape Fit I added some OPI Gold Shatter and Essence Make It Golden on the thumb and ring finger.

I might try this with China Glaze White Cap on top next to see if it makes it light enough to wear for work...

Also I bought another bottle of my go-to topcoat, Sally Hansen Insta Dri Non-Chip Topcoat (to be henceforth referred to as SHIDNCT!). I've had my current bottle since February and am reaching the very last dregs, which are cloudy, no doubt from all the nail polish it seems to pick up, and also from being thinned three or four times - this TC gets SERIOUSLY thick and gloopy about two thirds in! I still love it though, even after being thinned a billion times it still dries really fast, and I'm happy with the amount of shine. I'm not sure about the wear time of SHIDNCT as I tend to change my nails every couple of days. Aaaanyway, I was holding out on buying another bottle as it costs something like $16 here in oz, but found a great website, feel unique, which ships FREE to Australia (my favourite thing when I'm internet shopping!) and sells SHIDNCT for less than $10. So I now have a lovely, fresh, runny bottle of SHIDNCT to play with, and my nails are very happy!

Thick, cloudy, old-but-useable SHIDNCT on the left. New, runny, glorious SHIDNCT on the right. I still use the old one but it bubbles pretty badly so I save it for glitters where the bubbles are less noticeable.

 - Robyn x

Friday, August 24, 2012

Essence Brightsmates


Sorry I haven't posted in a while. I've been getting over a rather nasty cold, then last week managed to catch a brand new fresh cold so have been dealing with that this week and being a bit miserable and mucus-y. My nails have been a bit neglected as a result - it's a bit hard to paint them when I am coughing so hard I have tears coming down my face :s

This is a manicure I did last week and never got round to posting. It's one of the Essence Colour^3 polishes, this one is Brightsmates (you can see a photo of it in my previous post). The base colour is a bright pink jelly, and the top coat is sheer orange with pinkish glass flecks. The jelly is quite a nice formula and I used two coats in the photo below, with (I think) one coat of the topper.

I had to colour correct the shiz out of this as my camera kinda freaked about capturing this colour (I really need to find a decent photography setup, probably time to make my own lightbox!). It's a very bright summery colour, and maybe I would wear it as a pedicure but I really don't like this colour on my nails. At all. So this one will probably go up for swap at some point.

Also, I have been nominated for a Liebster blog award by the lovely mel my issta - thank you so much! I will do that post tomorrow, I promise - but right now I need to go pass out for about twelve hours. Stupid cold.

Robyn x

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Essence Season of Extremes Colour^3 Nail Polish

Woot woot!

I was in Priceline on Bourke Street Mall today (not the one opposite Target, the one above the Pancake Parlour) seeing if they had any specials on...and I spotted an Essence stand!!! I'd only seen Essence in Target before, and usually poorly stocked too, so was pretty darn excited to see a nice new looking stand...then I saw THESE:

OMG. The idea between these polishes is that you can wear either end on their own, or layered on top of each other to create a "third" colour. $5.50 each too - it was a no brainer to grab these!

I can't wait to try the bright ones, but I have work tomorrow, and work only allows nail polish "in neutral colours", so tonight I'm rocking My Nude Best Friends and Me.

The "base" colour in MNBFaM is a taupe creme with subtle silver shimmer. It was a bit of a meh texture and required two thick coats to get opaque. Also because the brushes are in the centre section of each tube, when you're painting you not only have the lid of the brush but also the polish at the other end, which is a bit weird to use. The topper in this duo is an iridescent shimmer in a sheer white base. It looks mostly silvery but on the brush bristles (which are black) I could see tiny flashes of pink/red. I'd be keen to try this over a black base to see the colour flash.

When I first put this on I was pretty underwhelmed...I'm not a huge fan of nude shades to begin with so it was already at a disadvantage! However after seeing it in a few different light conditions I'm actually really beginning to like it. The sheer sparkles over the creme create a depth of colour and shine which is really pretty.

This is two coats of the base colour, one coat of the topper, and one coat of Sally Hansen Insta-Dri.

I'm constantly on the lookout for nice polishes to wear at work - anything which is a bit interesting or out of the ordinary whilst sticking to the neutral colour scheme makes me not so sad to be wearing "boring" nails!

Robyn xox

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Leopard Print Nails

I've got a couple of days off work this week so instead of work appropriate nails I have a manicure which would probably give my boss a fit if he saw it :)

This is my first time doing a full leopard print manicure, and I was slightly surprised at how well it turned out. The base colour is from Aussie shop Sportsgirl and is called Apple, although I think it's more of a mint green. This takes three coats to be opaque but does have a nice shiny finish. The silver spots are another Sportsgirl polish, Bionic, which I think they still sell (not sure about Apple as I bought it about three years ago) and the black is BYS Black Satin. I used one coat of Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Hard as Wraps (long name much?) as a base coat, as I find my nails have been peeling lately, and this seems to be keeping them in one piece, and Sally Hansen Insta Dri topcoat, which is my go-to top coat, even if it thickens something shocking (although I've put thinner in it four times now and it still seems to dry just as fast) and will drag nail art no matter how careful I am. I will do a comparison post of top coats at some point.

Funnily enough, I had a look through my copy of the Wah Nails book of Nail Art and their tutorial for leopard print nails uses almost exactly the same colour scheme :) The book is full of really fun ideas and can be had from The Book Depository for about $15 Australian with free postage.

Robyn xox

Friday, August 10, 2012

Well Hello There...

Whew, a new blog!

I'm not very good at this introduction malarkey. I guess I could tell you a bit about myself.

I'm Robyn. I live in Melbourne, and I like - no, LOVE - to paint my nails.

I think it started at the end of last year when I moved out of my parents' house and subsequently lost regular access to a piano, which I've played since I was four years old. I had to do something with my hands, and found the wonderful world of nail polish.

Anyway, you came here for the nails, right? Here's today's manicure!

Apologies for the slightly dodgy index finger. I'm staying at mum and dad's tonight so don't have any of my regular tools with me. I figured, first post on the blog, why not make it a classic manicure? This is LA Splash Cosmetics nail polish in Cyclone Red. I remember borrowing this from my mum about four years ago to paint my nails and really enjoying how nicely it went on - two smooth, thin, perfectly self leveling and super shiny coats (although in this I have two coats of Essence Quick Dry Top Coat, which is not terribly quick drying - but I'll save that for another post!). I found it in the bathroom cupboard this morning and figured it would be a dried out mess, but no, it's still as perfect as the first time I tried it that many years ago! Happy face. My mum now only wears gel manicures so I don't think she'll mind me adding this to my stash :) Unfortunately I have no idea where to buy LA Splash as I loved the formulation of this, but they do have a website here where you can look at the pretty colours.

So, that's my first manicure for this blog! I have to admit, I rarely wear cremes, but this was such a pleasure to apply (no streaky brush strokes! No painstakingly dabbling glitter everywhere!) that I may have to change that. Also it gives me an excuse to buy more nail polish :)

Thanks for reading! This is a brand new baby blog, and I have a few ideas for posts, but if there's anything you want to read about (work appropriate nails, where to buy polish in Australia, nail care, home manicures etc) hit me up in the comments.

Robyn xox

ETA: A friend of mine has let me know that you can buy LA Splash nail polish from Cherry Culture. Thanks Jess!