Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Born Pretty Store Review - Studs, Striping Tape and Bows!

Wow, it feels good to be back here in my little polish corner of the internet!  It's been a LONG time since I've blogged regularly!  As I mentioned in my most recent post (click HERE), I've been living it up on Instagram - posting photos of my manis, outfits, and just a couple photos of my baby girl.  Ok, that's a total lie.  I LOVE posting photos of my Fiona, who just turned 6 months old on Monday the 7th!  I have really enjoyed Instagram and I've found a ton of awesome nail account to follow.  I will definitely continue posting my manis there on the regular, so come find me at @polishpleasejlw!

Now, let's get to the review!

I recently received some nail art products from Born Pretty Store for review.  I was so excited because I am not particularly skilled in the area of nail art, and I had never used products like studs, striping tape, or 3D nail charms before.  This was my big chance!  I received three products for review, the first of which is a wheel of nail art studs.

This wheel has a great mix of different sizes and shapes.  To apply the studs, I dabbed a little bit of clear polish to my finished mani.  I put a small amount of clear polish on a dotting tool and used that to pick up the stud and place it on my nail.  I finished off the mani with a generous coat of Seche Vite.

Here is Butter London All Hail the Queen with some of the small round studs from the wheel.

How gorgeous is this polish, BTW?

I thought these studs were great!  They were a nice size - not too big, not too teeny tiny - and they were super easy to apply to my nails (and remove!).  I really liked the convenience of the wheel and how it kept them all organized.  I will definitely be using these to spruce up a plain mani!

The next item I received to review was striping tape!  This stuff is so versatile and, once I get some practice, I'm sure I will be using it a lot to create some fun nail art!  I've been dying to create a nautical mani with stripes, and I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to give it a go.  I've seen manis like this all over the interwebs, so I'm not sure who was the original creator.

I first applied Mary Kay Radiant Red (a "rando" in my collection - pretty red, but crappy, thin formula) to all but my ring finger, which got two coats of Wet n' Wild French White Creme and a topper of Seche Vite.  I cut lengths of the striping tape and applied it with tweezers in a stripe pattern.  I applied one coat of Zoya Natty and then gently peeled off the striping tape.  After allowing Natty to dry a little bit, I added a little blob of clear polish and applied a heart stud.  To finish, I sealed everything with Seche Vite.

I LOVED this mani and I found that using the striping tape was not as intimidating or difficult as I thought!  The tape is very thin and not super sticky, so I wasn't afraid that it was going to peel off the polish I had already applied.

Last, but not least, is a product I have always wanted to try, but never had the guts to: 3D Bow Charms!  I just adore anything cute and tiny that could be deemed "kawaii" and these totally fit the bill.  I was so excited to receive them from Born Pretty Store and give them a go!  I received 10 bow charms which can be reused.

I am LOVING pastels right now - maybe it's this Chicago winter that just won't let up and my yearning for spring - so I thought I would pair my tiny pink bows with the soft, shimmery yellow of Zoya Piaf and Sally Hansen No Hard Feelings, a darker lavender creme.  After applying three coats of each polish and a top coat, I brushed a bit of nail glue where I wanted the bow to sit and also brushed some on the back of the bow itself.  I pressed the bow hard onto my nail and held it there for a minute or so while the glue hardened.  OH MY GOODNESS - where have these bows been all my life?

#sorrynotsorry for all the pics.  I just love the cuteness this little bow charm adds to my mani!  After I applied it, I wondered if I would be waking up with a bald patch on my nail and a tiny bow somewhere in my bedsheets (I did this mani shortly before bed on Monday night).  However, I woke up Tuesday morning with both bows still attached and they stayed that way through my shower.  The bow on my left hand popped off while attempting to wrangle my extremely long hippy hair (which is in desperate need of a cut!), but I fixed it with a little nail glue and went about my morning.  I got through an entire day at work, an evening of taking care of my baby, a sinkful of dishes and some ::ahem:: stain removal on a certain someone's onesie - as I type this post, both bows are still firmly in place!

All in all, I really love the products I received from Born Pretty Store.  They really allowed me to broaden my nail art horizons and made cute looks really effortless!  Born Pretty Store has a TON of products, so if you have not already checked out the site I highly advise you to do so - make sure to click the links of the products I reviewed to check them out!  You can get a 10% discount on your order by using the coupon code below!

Thank you for stopping by today!  Don't forget to find me on Instagram (@polishpleasejlw) and Twitter (@polishpleasejlw) where I share my manis and my day-to-day life!

Sunday, January 12, 2014

A Long Hiatus!

Hello wonderful followers!

It's been ages since I worked on my blog and you may (or may not, haha) be wondering what I've been up to!

In early 2013 I struggled with morning sickness while pregnant with our first child.  Pregnancy was an amazing thing, but working full-time and growing a human around the clock made me completely exhausted!  Instead of blogging and doing my nails, I napped and rested in my spare time.  Despite the exhaustion, I was blessed with an uncomplicated pregnancy.

I was due September 29th, but that day came and went without even a hint of labor.  My doctor scheduled an induction at 41 weeks, much to my dismay.  I had hoped to go into labor naturally, but someone was far too comfortable to leave on their own!  My husband took this photo of me on October 5th, the night before I went into be induced.

I was HUGE at the end!!!

Our daughter, Fiona Marie, arrived at 6:21 p.m. on Monday, October 7th.  She weighted 8 lb. 7 oz, was 20" long and had a full head of dark hair, just like her Mommy.  She was the most beautiful thing my husband and I had ever seen.

Meeting my girl for the first time

I enjoyed 10 weeks of maternity leave until returning to work on December 16th.  My heart years to be a stay-at-home mom, so my husband and I are working hard to make that dream a reality.  In the meantime, I rely on the support of wonderful coworkers to get me through the difficult days at work.

Anyway, with pregnancy behind me and a daily routine somewhat established, I am renewing my love for polish.  Getting a manicure in between feedings, naps, diaper changes and playtime is difficult, and blogging seems next to impossible.  I still desire to connect with the polish community, so I have set up an account on Instagram (@polishpleasejlw) so I can share my manis as well as adorable photos of my beautiful daughter.  I hope you'll come find me!!

I'm not getting rid of the blog just yet - maybe I can find some time for posting, and maybe I'll have the opportunity to do it more if I get to stay at home with Fiona.  For now, I'll be reading up on nail blogs, posting on Instagram, and feeling free from the pressure to come up with posts and have the newest polishes.

Thanks for reading - I hope to continue to stay connected with all of you!!
Fiona at 5 weeks old
Fiona with Mommy on her 29th birthday

Fiona at 3 months old (just this past week!)

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Review: Nail Candy Nail Art Pens

Ahhh it's good to be back on the blog!  :)

Today I have a special treat for you guys!  I was recently contacted by Nail Candy and was asked to review their nail art pens!  If you're not familiar with Nail Candy, they are nail polish pens that apply polish with a normal brush as well as a special "micro-tip" applicator.

I received two pens from Nail Candy's "Live Colorfully" set, which is absolutely perfect for spring.  The creamy pastels have endless possibilities for Easter, St. Patrick's Day, or springy floral nail art.  As you can see in the photos, each pen has two colors.  Each color can be brushed on just like normal polish, or you can use the micro-tip pen to create detailed nail art.  The pens twist apart at the center, making them easy to use, especially when you're using the normal polish brush.  The "bottles" are made of softer plastic, which allows you to easily squeeze out the polish when you're using the pen function.

Great for fine details!!

I started my nail art with two coats of each polish.  These polishes applied very well and, with the exception of the green polish (which has more of a sheer, jelly finish), were opaque in two coats.  After applying a coat of Out the Door to dry my base colors, I did a "v" pattern on each nail with some little accent dots.

I am very impressed with the Nail Candy pen!  First of all, the polish itself has a really good formula.  It applied really well with the brush and came out very smoothly when using the nail art pen.  I was a little afraid that the polish might bubble when coming out of the pen tip, but it really did not and it created even, crisp lines.  The pens come with a tiny pin that can be used to unclog the pen tips if any dried polish blocked it, which I can see coming in handy once these pens are used a few times.

I would definitely recommend these, for both nail art "newbies" and those who are more experienced.  They make nail art VERY easy and these is no need to worry about brushes and extra clean up.

You can purchase Nail Candy nail art pens by clicking on their logo below!

*Products provided for my honest review.*

Friday, March 8, 2013

Friday Update

I'm alive, I promise!  :)

To my lovely readers, I am so sorry that I've been quiet over the last week!  I've been busy and just haven't gotten back into the nail routine after being sick.  However, I'm ready to get back into the game!  I'm hoping to put together some posts this weekend so you guys can have some eye candy next week.  :)

I hope you are all well and ready for a WEEKEND!  I know I am!!  Be sure to check back next week for new polish colors, reviews, and, of course, Twinsie Tuesday!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Thursday, February 28, 2013

"Black" to Basics!

Hello lovely readers!!

I'm really trying to get back into the habit of posting regularly.  I've not been feeling well these last couple of weeks, but I'm feeling a bit better now and I am motivated to make new nail looks for you guys!

For today, I decided to do a nice, dark color on my recently shortened tips.  My nails have been growing like CRAZY lately, so I've been doing a lot of filing!  I think I've decided that I like a shorter length with a squared tip.  What's your go-to nail shape/length?

On my tips today is two coats of Wet n Wild Black Creme with an accent nail of China Glaze Fairy Dust.  It's simple, but I LOVE the way black (and other darks!) look on short, square nails.

I LOVE the way shiny black polish looks on short, well-manicured nails.  I think it can look really classy and the days of black polish being macabre or depressing are over.  There are so many companies out there making awesome blacks with linear or scattered holos or other types of fun glitter.

How do you wear black polish?  Alone?  As nail art only?  Let me know - I'd love to hear how readers incorporate a little dark vampiness into their manis!

Thanks for stopping by, lacquer lovers!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Twinsie Tuesday: Ruffian Mani

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

I was pretty nervous about today's Twinsie Tuesday challenge because I have never attempted a ruffian mani before!  That said, I'm glad this mani was part of TT because otherwise I may have been too scared to attempt it!

I knew I wanted a great black polish to be part of my ruffian mani, so I chose Zoya Storm.  You can't go wrong with a great black with a scattered holo!  For my base I went with Zoya Natty.  I really love the black and blue combo, although I wish there was a little more contrast between the polishes for the photos.

To create my ruffian, I painted two thin coats of Natty.  I then used a tiny striping brush to create the "U" part with Storm and then filled it in with the polish brush.  My ruffian isn't perfect, but I pulled it off!  Check it out!

So what do you think of the ruffian mani?  Is this a technique you've tried or you would try?  I think it can look really classy with an edge, kind of like the funky french.  I think I'll give this technique another go!

Take a look at how my Twinsies did with the ruffian mani challenge!  As always, thanks for reading!

Amanda at Amandalandish
Ashley at Art Evolve
Chelsea at Nailed Blog
Cordia at Seriously Swatched
Elizabeth at Did My Nails
Jamie at Polish, Please!
Katherine at Haul of Fame
Marisa at Polish Obsession
Meredith at Polish and Charms
Rachel at Top Coat It
Sarah at See Sarah Swatch

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Subtle Paisley Stamping

Hello lovelies!

Today I have a fairly simple mani to show you.  After filing my nails down to super nubs, I wanted a nice neutral, so I wore Sation BYOBottle for a day and decided to spice it up with some stamping the next day.  I thought a bright pink would look good against BYOBottle's plumb-y brown color, so I reached for an oldie but a goodie: Maybelline Salon Expert Cutie Pink (must have been a rough brainstorming day when they thought up that name).  I've had this polish for years, but it's special to me because I was wearing it the day my husband proposed.  :)

Cutie Pink is a bit sheer for a stamping polish, but it still managed to show up as a subtle design.  I used the full-nail paisley design on Konad M60, which I LOVE!  This is my first time using it, but I will definitely try it again with a different polish!

Nothing special, but I really love the stamp and the Sation polish I used as the base.  Do you have a favorite stamp?

Now that I'm back in the world of the living, make sure to follow me on Twitter (@polishpleasejlw) to see what I'm up to when I'm not polishing my nails!  :)

Thanks for stopping by, and have a great day everyone!