Where I’ve been…

Hi everyone!

Yeah, I’ve been gone for a really, really, REALLY long time. Given that my last blog post was in February, I haven’t been back here in almost a year – and I thought my LAST absence was long! While I have continually been mulling over when I should write another post, a recent comment prompted me to write this update now.

Anyways, I’m fine overall, nothing especially bad in my life has been keeping me from blogging. On the contrary, I’ve been pretty occupied with a bunch of work stuff, plus I’ve been having more fun this year! I can really tell based on the number of phone pictures I’ve taken in the past few years: this year I already took triple the number of photos than in 2014, and double than in 2015. I’ve been lucky enough to go on some trips this year: Las Vegas, Israel, Washington D.C., Disneyland, and planned holiday travel. Despite some unpleasantness at work earlier this year, things overall have been looking up. If you guys are curious about life stuff, I’ll tuck the highlights towards the end of my post.

But of course I’ve still been painting my nails! Just less elaborately than before. Since I haven’t had a lot of time or energy for nail art (although I did a few designs this year), I’ve mostly been sticking to single colors or layered combinations. Here’s a grid of all the non-nail art photos I could find; I’ll post the individual photos in another post with info about the polish(es) and my thoughts. Probably I’ll tuck the nail art into other posts too, since otherwise this one would be too long.

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Julep January 2016 Swatches, Comparisons, and Nail Art

Hi everyone! I’m back with new material today: a subscription box post! Instead of going through the backlog of subscription boxes that I didn’t get around to last year, I decided to skip ahead to this month’s Julep box to keep it current (well, sort of current, since it’s not January anymore). So today I have my January 2016 Julep box (New Year, Fresh Look) to show off on the blog, replete with swatches and nail art!

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This month’s collection was full of gorgeous cool-colored shimmery shades that immediately caught my attention, so I was very taken with the polishes this month since those are right up my alley. For this month’s box, I just stuck to my favorite three shades from the collection, but there were so many other lovely polishes. I used the three colors plus Julep Mahima to create some eye-catching peacock feather nail art, which came out so very nicely. Read on to see all the polish!

Julep January 2016 Swatches

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End of 2015 Update

Hi everyone! So I haven’t been around for a while (haha October…). Anyhow, I wanted to leave a short update about life things that might explain why I haven’t written a blog post for the past 2-3 months, and what I have been doing in the interim. The jist of it is that, while I do intend to keep blogging and continue writing posts, that hasn’t happened for a while for a few reasons, and blogging in the future will be similarly difficult for me to keep up with.

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Swatches – Carpe Noctem Clear Skies and Interstellar Towel

Hi everyone! I’m still here – yes, I am! So…ummm…I’ve been away for a while… A combination of various factors ended up keeping me away from my blog for a month and a half, the biggest one being that I’ve been putting in a lot more time at work. Usually when I come home on weekdays, I’m too tired to paint my nails at all, let alone do nail art. Also, I shifted my spare time towards another creative hobby of mine – sewing – so that I could complete a gorgeous new Renaissance costume for this year’s faire (which is AWESOME). But, yeah, I’ve been away from my blog for a while, which isn’t something I wanted to happen. Hopefully I can get back into blogging more frequently now that I’m not doing as much sewing, and I can eventually move through the backlog of things I’ve wanted to write about (especially the subscription boxes!).

Carpe Noctem Clear Skies Swatch 6

Before I get around to the subscription box posts, though, I thought I’d post some swatches of a few polishes I wore recently by an indie brand named Carpe Noctem Cosmetics. I don’t exactly remember how Carpe Noctem first came to my attention, but I somehow found their Etsy shop and I liked a number of polishes they had and placed an order. They have some gorgeous holographics and shimmers, and the best part is that they offer multiple sizes of the same colors so you can buy smaller (and less expensive) bottles if you want! Since I have photos of some of the polishes I’ve worn, I thought I’d share them: here are Carpe Noctem Clear Skies and Interstellar Towel!

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Nail Art – Muted Pink Florals

Hi everyone! I’m back with some new nail art that fits into the summer-to-fall transitional category, since it’s almost autumn. While I’m not ready to let go of summer (I never am, really), I know that I have to move on into the new season eventually – why not with nail art? Fall is definitely the best season for nail art anyways. So I did these elegant, muted pink florals with the beginning of autumn in mind.

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Julep August 2015 Swatches, Comparisons, and Nail Art

Hi everyone! Today I’ve got my picks from the Julep August 2015 Collection (Muse Montreal) to show off on the blog! I know it’s been a while since my last post (and it’s no longer August), but I thought I should write my August subscription box posts eventually. Seriously, I feel like I’ve been fighting exhaustion all the time now that my commute is now 2 hours every day instead of 5 minutes. Lesson learned: if you can help it, don’t move an hour away from work.

Julep August 2015 Nail Art Mix and Match 6

Anyways, I almost didn’t take a box this month because I just wasn’t feeling the particular polishes that made up the collection, despite the fact that I liked the color palette overall. While I eventually convinced myself to take a box using up some of my store credit, I don’t think I chose very well and ended up disappointed with most of my selections. The plus side of taking a box, though, was that I received a set of super fun metallic temporary tattoos as a freebie and I LOVED them! I’d been contemplating getting a set before, and Julep sent some for free! So I used them to create some cute, geometric mix-and-match nail art.

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Swatch – Enchanted Polish Daydream

Hi everyone! While I’m busy preparing my subscription box posts for the month, in the meantime, I have a swatch of Enchanted Polish Daydream to show off on the blog. Enchanted Polish is an indie brand with a cult-like following around it that is so intense, it is only possible to purchase bottles within a few hours every couple of weeks or from resellers. Up until now, I hadn’t bought into the hype surrounding the brand because I hadn’t seen anything from them that I felt was worth the expense and the difficulty. But then I saw pictures of Daydream and I was so smitten that I eventually bought a bottle from a reseller at a fairly reasonable price. And so, without further ado, I now present a swatch of the most expensive nail polish I own!

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Julep July 2015 Swatches, Comparisons, and Nail Art

Hi everyone! I’ve (finally) got another post out for you, which I really should have done a looonnnnngggg time ago. I apologize to all my readers for not posting as much as I wanted to in July (seriously, I only wrote like 3 posts last month…). Last month I was just all over the place physically and mentally because of my move, and I was in a pretty bad funk for the remainder of the month. Acclimating to a new way of living takes me an extremely long time; this time is especially difficult now that I have to adjust to having a much longer commute than before. It got to the point where doing anything felt like a chore – even things I wanted to do – so I postponed nail art for longer than I should have. I’m trying to force myself out of my “funk” by pushing myself to do more, and I think it’s working. It’ll just take some time, and then I’ll be back to normal. Anyways, again, I’m sorry. I didn’t want to leave my blog for this long, but I ended up feeling semi-crazed for pretty much the whole month.

Julep July 2015 Nail Art Butterfly Wings 6

This post is all about my Julep July 2015 Maven box (Drenched Collection), which I really should have gotten around to before it became over a week into August. The Drenched Collection was rather interesting because it had a huge variety of polish finishes – Julep said that this collection had the most different finishes out of all collections ever – and the colors were all quite lovely. I settled on four polishes from the collection, including two special finish polishes, which I used to create some super fun butterfly wing nail art. Read on!

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SquareHue July 2015 Swatches, Comparisons, and Nail Art

Hi everyone! Today I have the SquareHue July 2015 box (the 1960s) to show off on the blog! Finally, I’ve gotten around to the subscription box posts! About time, too – it’s almost the end of the month…oops…  Anyways, this is the box that I was most looking forward to for the entire year because I figured that there would be some pretty “out there” polish inside. I was totally psyched for the crazy stuff! Indeed, SquareHue did not disappoint: this is the grooviest bunch of colors I’ve gotten so far from them; it’s highly appropriate for the ’60s and the summer. Since the psychedelic influence of the colors and names was very obvious, I combined all three polishes into an electric daisy design for some flower power on my nails.

SquareHue July 2015 Nail Art Flower Power Floral 6

Also, as I mentioned in my last post, I’m trying to explore my new neighborhood more now that I’ve moved into a new apartment. Given how much I was digging the ’60s inspiration behind this SquareHue box, I took the opportunity to conduct some firsthand “research” on the decade by traveling to one of the hotspots of the hippie movement on my way home from work one day. I’ve got a bit about that trip, with a few pictures, at the end of the post!

SquareHue July 2015 Swatches Composite Continue reading