My Favorite Things Series – Starbucks Passion Iced Tea Lemonade with Sally Hansen

Hi everyone! I’m adding a new entry to the My Favorite Things series today (a series inspired by my stuff), and this time my inspiration is readily available for purchase at your nearest Starbucks! For this entry, I was inspired by my current favorite Starbucks beverage: Passion iced tea lemonade (I’m going to refer to it as PTL from now on, since that’s what Starbucks does). I really love the fruity and refreshing iced tea/lemonade drinks Starbucks has been putting out for summer, and the Passion tea version is especially delicious. One morning, I got a big cup of it, and it just looked so beautiful (and tasty) I couldn’t help but want to honor its loveliness. So I turned it into nail art! I’m not trying to promote Starbucks here; this is purely a personal homage to my favorite drink.

Starbucks Passion Iced Tea Lemonade Nail Art

Starbucks Passion Iced Tea Lemonade Nail Art

One of the things I’ve been rather disappointed about the My Favorite Things series is that none of the stuff I’ve been posting about can be purchased anymore. Past features have included designs inspired by a minty starry scarf, rainbow dichroic glass earrings, and gray and red poppy bedding, none of which are very easy to find since I either found the items in an obscure location or they are no longer in season. It makes me a bit frustrated with myself when I go on and on about how much I like something and, if anyone who reads my blog wants the same thing, they can’t obtain it. This time, I’m happy to report that you can purchase your own glass of PTL quite easily, and for a cost that’s probably less than $5 (Starbucks prices vary per region so I can’t give an exact price). Read on to see how it compares to the real deal!

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Swatch – Zoya Janice and Blog Announcements

Hi everyone! I have a quick post today. Last night I was too sleepy to do nail art (and the last design burnt me out a bit), so I painted my nails with a single color: Zoya Janice. It’s a lovely pinky-red shimmer that applies very smoothly. It reaches opacity in two coats, but I applied three to enhance the depth of color.

Zoya Janice

Zoya Janice

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My Favorite Things Series – Red and Gray Poppy Bedding

Hi everyone! I have a new post in the “My Favorite Things” series today (nail art inspired by my stuff). Design #1 was based off of a starry scarf and Design #2 was meant to look like a pair of dichroic glass earrings. This time, I’m showing off some nail art that looks like my bedding! A little over a year ago, I bought an awesome duvet cover from Bed Bath & Beyond by a brand named notNeutral that has some bright red poppy-like flowers and light gray leaves on top of a darker gray background. I really love home decor like this because it has everything I like: florals, bright colors, and graphic print. Also, the family dog’s name is Poppy, and so – not gonna lie – I was partly drawn to it because it has poppies on it. The bedding is actually still available to look at on the Bed Bath & Beyond website, but it is no longer for sale online. You can find it on Wayfair, if you’re interested in buying it (it’s $80 I think).

Red Poppy Bedding Continue reading

My Favorite Things Series – Dichroic Glass Earrings with Rainbow Foil

Hi everyone! I’m continuing my series of nail art designs inspired by patterns on my favorite things today, which began with the minty star scarf a bit over a week ago. This manicure was inspired by a FABULOUS pair of dichroic glass earrings that I bought at a craft fair two years ago. As best as I can tell (I’m no expert), these stud earrings are made of an ultramarine blue glass base layered with some rainbow film, and then coated with clear glass. I bought them for $10 or less, so they were quite inexpensive. Unfortunately, I can’t credit the artist because I can’t find her info 😦

According to Wikipedia, dichroic glass is made by layering glass and micro-layers of metals or oxides to yield a piece of glass with color-shifting properties. The dichroic appearance of the glass is due to thin-film optics effects, which you can also see at play with rainbow soap bubbles and oil slicks. Since I don’t have micro-layers of metals/oxides to use on my nails, I created the dichroic effect using some shiny rainbow transfer foil. It looks AMAZING!!! The finished look is really close to how the glass looks in real life…almost better than how it looks in real life. Plus, the technique I used wasn’t too difficult, so I made a tutorial! Check it out:

Rainbow Foil Dichroic Earrings Continue reading

Julep August 2014 Maven Swatches, Comparisons, and Nail Art

Julep August 2014 Maven Sari Nail Art 3

Hi everyone! I’ve got some polishes from Julep’s August 2014 collection today (Wanderlust) that I swatched individually, and then combined into a sari-themed nail art design (with a tutorial!). Most of the polishes from this month were very vivid shimmers and microglitters, plus one glitter bomb. It’s a very rich and opulent bunch of colors – I love how it all together looks like jewelry! This month I picked the Bombshell box (again) with Neha and Tazeen, and added on Avni (Classic with a Twist) and Waleska (Boho Glam).

The whole collection seems to have been inspired by India, specifically sari colors. I can definitely see how the colors fit the theme, with the vibrant, saturated jewel tones. So I used all of the colors to create sari-inspired nail art! It’s easier than it looks, and I made a tutorial for it if anyone is interested. You can see everything below, starting with swatches:

Julep August 2014 Maven Composite Swatches Continue reading

Rainbow Honey Sea Star and 488nm (August Mystery Bag)

Hi everyone! I’m excited to show off some indie nail polish by Rainbow Honey today, including a brand-new polish from the August mystery bag! This is my first post with indie polish, actually. I’m sure that I’ll have many more to come 🙂

I’ve had my eyes on Rainbow Honey for quite some time, and I finally sprang for some polish earlier this month. My order arrived yesterday, and I was so excited about it that I had to do some nail art! This simple design features Sea Star (the June 2014 LE) on top of a new Rainbow Honey polish from this month’s mystery bag: 488nm. I really like how fun and cute the two polishes look together. Definitely the aquatic look I was going for.

Rainbow Honey Sea Star and 488nm

Rainbow Honey Sea Star and 488nm

From the second I saw Sea Star, I knew I wanted to own a bottle. What can I say…love at first sight? I don’t know why I find it so compelling, since I usually am not into glitter bombs. I guess I’m drawn to its color combination of aqua, coral, and yellow, and the fact that it’s adorable without being too precious for me. The problem was finding a polish worthy of putting underneath it. Luckily, my search was over when I opened the August mystery bag and fished out 488nm (swatches are below).
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Swatch – Julep Boris & Nicole

Hi everyone! First up I have a quick PSA for nail polish wearers: nitrile gloves are NOT fully resistant to acetone. I repeat, NOT fully resistant. I had the misfortune of discovering this fact when I removed my gloves after I wiped down some tools with acetone. The left index finger of my manicure had gotten smudged, but thankfully not beyond repair.

I have a quick swatch today of Julep Boris & Nicole! This polish is a deep red-brown (Chestnut? Mahogany?) shimmer polish that applies easily in two coats – very autumn-appropriate for sure. It’s very sexy.

Julep Boris & Nicole

Julep Boris & Nicole

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My Favorite Things Series – Minty Star Scarf with Julep

Hi everyone! Today I’m starting a new series of nail art designs inspired by the beautiful patterns of some of my favorite things (hence the title of this post). Yesterday I was looking at my list of manicure ideas – I keep one on my phone so I don’t forget anything – and I realized that at least four of the ideas were inspired by stuff I own. So I’m making it a whole series!

The first design is based off of one of my favorite scarves, which is a bright minty/aqua green color with some metallic silver stars of various sizes scattered all over it. I bought this particular scarf at Nordstrom Rack several months ago, and I remember it being inexpensive. Not super insulating, but it helps keep me a little warmer. And, of course, it’s pretty and shiny 🙂

Minty Scarf Continue reading

Orange and Cream Vertical Stripes

Hi everyone! I have some pretty basic nail art today: vertical stripes in different shades of orange on a cream-colored background. This idea has been sitting on my nail art to-do list for quite some time, so I’m glad I finally got around to it. It’s pretty fun and summery, and the brightness of the orange makes me happy 🙂

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Whimsical Blue Feathers with Essie – Summer Promo!

Essie Feathers
Hi everyone! I have some exciting news: Essie is having a summer stock up! This news is like two weeks old, but the promotion is valid until September 1st, so it’s still relevant. The promotion is: if you purchase any three Essie polishes at an authorized retailer, you can send a picture of the receipt to Essie and they will ship you a free bottle of topcoat in three to four weeks. The offer is valid for US residents only, and lasts until September 1st. Since Essie hardly ever has promotions, I took advantage of this offer and bought three Essie polishes at my local drugstore; combining other drugstore coupons with the promo made me feel like I actually got a good deal. It’s only been one and a half weeks since I sent in my receipt, so no topcoat for me yet.

The link to the promo is here:

The three Essie polishes I bought were Who is the Boss (light blue green), Strut Your Stuff (BRIGHT turquoise blue – new for summer 2014), and For the Twill of It (purple-green duochrome). Because the colors looked so good together, I combined them into this feather design, which I think is quite whimsical and breezy. I like it 🙂
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