Review of Born Pretty Christmas L005 Stamping Plate

Just when you thought Christmas was over, here I am bringing you a review of a Christmas stamping plate! In all honesty, this plate (the Christmas L005 plate from Born Pretty Store) has more designs on it that have to do with winter than they have to do with Christmas. I didn’t even create a Christmas manicure with it!

The plate comes in a Christmas themed cardboard sleeve with the open end sealed with a label printed with the item’s barcode and number. Instructions are printed on the back of the packaging.

IMG_20181228_182943.jpg

The bottom photo shows the plate with its “protection sticker” (blue plastic film) still attached.

Continue reading

Review of Beauty Big Bang BBBXL-034 Stamping Plate

Today’s review cover the Beauty Big Bang XL-034 stamping plate. Keep reading to see how to create some beautiful manicures for the season with this item!

As is the case with all of the Beauty Big Bang plates, the BBBXL-034 plate comes packaged in a decorative cardboard envelope. You can tell what the theme of the patterns is based on the graphic printed on the front, and it lists the name of the plate while the reverse side has a proprietary bar code for the item along with a pictorial showing how to use it.

IMG_20181123_004203.jpg

While the packaging is cute, I always wish that they would leave a window cut out so that you can see what the images are on the actual plate so that you don’t have to open it to see the item. It is a huge step up that they have different graphics on the front so that you know what season the images are best suited for. Continue reading

Winter Landscape Nails

I mentioned the other day that my work with New Camerata Opera was hugely inspiring and that it spurned the creation of some glam punk sheep nail art. I didn’t want to leave the 2nd production of the double bill out, so for closing night, I did nails that were loosely based on the opera Savitri by Gustav Holst.

I used the trees from the projection and the color palette of the costumes as the inspiration for some winter landscape snowy trees nail art.

I started by painting my nails a pale shade of blue. This polish from Julep is called Joanna and is a cross between periwinkle blue, lavender, and gray with the prettiest shimmer in the formula.

IMG_20181203_022645.jpg

2 coats of Joanna look like sheer heaven.

Continue reading

Review of Beauty Big Bang BBBXL-030 Stamping Plate

Thanksgiving has passed as has Black Friday, which can only mean one thing: it’s safe to decorate for Christmas! Some may not appreciate the jump start into the holiday season, but it has been proven that decorating for the holidays can put you into a happier mood. Even if you’re not planning to do full on lights and a tree, you can get your nails ready with this plate from Beauty Big Bang!

The Beauty Big Bang XL-030 plate comes in a beautifully printed cardboard envelope. It lists the plate name on the front and has its own personalized UPC code on the back along with a photo tutorial for how to use the product. Unfortunately the holder is not designed to allow you to see the actual images contained on the plate, but at least if you are looking for your Christmas themed plates, this will stand out in your collection.

IMG_20181117_004415.jpg

Continue reading

Sophisticated Snowflake Manicure

Here’s a quick tutorial for the manicure that I sported at my concert last Sunday. Just like the snow we had last Thursday, it was here for a day and gone the next because I used a peel off gel base coat underneath these nails. I needed a design I could put together quickly the night before the concert because I unfortunately had mismatched hands due to my Cindy hand (right hand) having a traditional gel polish application that would go the distance and my left hand sporting a different manicure that had a peel off base coat.

I started by applying Born Pretty Peel Off Gel Base Coat to all my nails because I suspected that I wasn’t going to be able to do as nice of a job for this manicure due to time constraints. This layer was cured for one minute in a UV/LED lamp.

Next, I painted my nails black using Laguna Moon Classic Soak-Off UV-LED Gel Polish in color CL117. Two layers of polish were applied and cured at a minute per coat, leaving my nails glossy and completely dry for the next step.

IMG_20181121_022504.jpg

Continue reading

Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer Manicure

We recently had our first snowfall storm in NYC, and wow, did it make a mess out of the city! Nothing takes the magic out of snow away like sitting in traffic on unplowed streets for hours and hours! The weather inspired me to create a gray skied manicure with a lovable icon of Christmas to try to bring the wonder back.

I started by painting my nails gray with Laguna Moon Classic Soak Off Gel Polish in color CL064. Because I was using gel polish, I applied 3 very thin coats cured at one minute each in a UV/LED lamp.

IMG_20181117_005232.jpg

3 coats of Laguna Moon’s CL064 shade turns your nails into a chic gray with the added reinforcement of a gel polish.

My initial plan was to mostly use stamping techniques for this manicure, although things did not go exactly according to plan for me as you will soon see!

Continue reading

Icy Winter French Manicure

Ah, winter. The snow and the ice sure make the season beautiful, but it’s also flu season, and guess who is still recovering from that? Yep, you guessed it- it’s me! I didn’t intend to take another break from doing nail art, but I was horribly ill for many days, unable to do anything but sweat from my fever and sleep. I’m doing better now 2 weeks later, but I still can’t get rid of my cough! It’s only just slightly nerve wracking when you want to paint your nails.

In any case, I decided to make a snow drift inspired French tip design for this week. I started by painting all my nails a beautiful icy light blue color using the aptly named polish Silent Snowfall from Femme Fatale.

IMG_20180124_010937.jpg

It only took two coats of polish to get this light shade perfectly opaque. It also has the prettiest shimmer thanks to the fine holographic glitter added to the formula.

The French tips were done with plate B119 from Blink and Ya Qin An Stamping Nail Polish in Silver. Continue reading

Photobombing Polar Bear Nail Art

It has been a rough week for me as my LG G4 phone went into an unrecoverable boot loop, meaning that I lost a bunch of pictures, texts, and other such data.  I’m waiting for my replacement phone to arrive while I use a cheap substitute in the meantime, but my whole routine has been upset, and it has caused me to be in a creative slump.

My last manicure was starting to chip, so I forced myself to try to come up with something else.  Because I’ve been so uninspired, I opted to do the @clairestelle8challenge prompt for the 14th: Animal.  I figured that I could do a cute polar bear over a cool toned gradient, and to make it easier to paint, have the bear “photobomb” the scene so that I would only have to paint the upper half of its face.  The photobomb idea also came from the fact that I have small nails that make it hard to paint too much detail, so I was trying to work with my canvas size.

I picked a nice cool toned blue for my base color.

img_20170113_004055.jpg

Maltilda by Julep.

The gradient was a mix of the base color, a shimmery holographic ice blue, and a white shade speckled with silver microglitter.  I applied stripes of each polish onto a nail art mat and used a sponge to dab the mix onto my nails.

img_20170113_005646.jpg

Pictured from left to right: Matilda by Julep, Tali by Julep, and Dandy Lyin’ Around by China Glaze.

img_20170113_005605.jpg

The finished icy gradient looks like snow drifts blowing across an open field.

For the bear, I used Craft Smart Acrylic Paints in blends of White, Dark Grey, and Black.

img_20170113_010729.jpg

I painted the general shape of the bear on top of the gradient with white paint.  Then I blended a little bit of Dark Grey with White to tint the ears.  I also slightly shaded the face around the eyes and snout area with an even lighter version of the mix that I used for the ears.  Finally I added the nose and used a dotting tool to make the eyes with black paint.

After applying some top coat, the bear is done!

img_20170113_011750.jpg

Peekaboo! I see you!

I apologize if the photos don’t look as nice here because I typically use apps on my phone to do the editing, and I got stuck using an old tablet instead this time.  Hopefully I’ll be up and running on the warranty replacement phone this week, but until then, stay warm, and happy polishing!

 

 

Snowy Cityscape Nail Art

Raise your hand if you got hit by winter storm Jonas over the weekend!

It only seemed fitting to do some sort of snowy nail art after being dumped with over 20 inches of snow in NYC.  With a travel ban in place on the day the blizzard came, I used the time to do some nail art.

img_20160126_162819.jpg

The color palette: Snowcone by Orly, Konad Special Nail Polish in Black, and Wham! by Formula X for Sephora.

I began by painting all my nails with the aptly named Snowcone polish by Orly.

img_20160126_165004.jpg

This beautiful sky blue is brought to you by Snowcone from Orly.

I used a plate from Bundle Monster to construct my city.

img_20160126_162459.jpg

Plate BM-414 from Bundle Monster.

To make a little bit of a variation on some of the buildings, I tried to stamp the pattern at varying heights, and I also erased parts of the design by painting over the tops of some structures with Snowcone.

img_20160126_165032.jpg

Stamping done with Konad Special Nail Polish in Black and plate BM-414 by Bundle Monster.

Wham! is a great glitter top coat from Formula X that mimics snow quite well.  I applied one coat to the top 3/4 of my nail so that the buildings would not be completely covered by glitter.

img_20160126_165103.jpg

Wham! by Formula X creates a realistic looking snowfall with its different sized glitters.

Important note- I should have let the stamping polish dry completely before applying Wham!  I’m so used to instantly applying Seche Vite top coat over all my designs that I forgot that stamping polish can get streaky if a different clear based polish is used on top of it.

I did try to clean up some of the streakiness by adding touches of Snowcone over the parts that didn’t look so nice.  I think the overall effect is pretty cool.

img_20160124_215856.jpg

Winter in the city.

Hope you’re all staying warm and safe out there!  Happy polishing!