Thursday, 28 February 2013

Mani Monday: Spring Spots

I'm so excited about this mani. It was the first time I used my new dotting tools and they're probably my favourite nail art tool so far, and so easy to use! I know you can use the head of a pin or a pencil, but the set was only £2.50 so it was pretty cheap. I was inspired by this pin on Pinterest. I did a pastel rainbow as the base for my nails, with last year's 17 pastels - Sherbet Lemon, Fairy Cake, Woo Me, Heart Beat and Mint Choc Chip.  The dots were Barry M White.  I got a lot of compliments about these nails - though perhaps they're more appropriate for Easter!

17 pastel nail polishes

17 pastel dotticure nail art

17 pastel dotticure nail art


dotting tools

dotting tools

I'm linking up with Glitter and Gloss's Mani Monday again this week - as ever, looking forward to everyone else's work!

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

NOTD: Butter Diamond Geezer

I thought it about time to talk about Butter London, one of my absolutely favourite polish brands around at the moment.  I began my love affair with Butter London polishes when I came upon a little Butter salon at Seattle's Sea-Tac airport (on Concourse C, if you're interested in popping by sometime) during my layover on my journey home from San Francisco in October.  I had a couple of hours to kill and I was taken in by the sheer beauty of the bottles and the liquid rainbows inside them...


(You have to admit they are aesthetically stunning to look at...)

Anyway, at the time I had a manicure with Scouse (a gorgeous marine blue with flecks of pink, purple and blue glitter - the website helpfully tells us that the name is 'Brit slang referring to a person from Liverpool'). I fell in love with it so much over the few days I wore it that I had to source some for myself on eBay (with their PD Quick topcoat which is one of my favourite top coats).  One thing I have to say I find rather endearing about the brand is that as they are called Butter London, (even though they are a US company (one of the directors is apparently British)) they like to come up with 'quintessentially British' names for their polishes (Chimney Sweep, Crumpet, Cuppa, Dodgy Barnett, Dosh and Slapper are some of the ones that make me giggle - I'm pretty sure the last time a dodgy barnett was referred to was in 1994 in Smash Hits magazine).  They also like to call their fans Bezzie Mates, which I definitely haven't used since 1997 when I was 12.  That said, I can't help but adore their lovely lacquers.  I grew my collection with purchases of West End Wonderland (a dazzling gold glitter), Chancer (a rich red glitter), Black Knight (purple and pink glitter in a black base) and Lovely Jubbly (a discotastic red, blue and gold glitter in a magenta base) - which all saw me through the Christmas period with a sufficient amount of glitz on my talons.  (I'll do a post on all that glitters sometime).

A couple of weeks ago I saw, probably on Pinterest, Diamond Geezer and though I already have a silver polish which I love (Barry M's silver foil), I couldn't resist finding this one on eBay as it literally looks like molten silver on your fingertips. It's so sparkly, without being a glitter. It goes on smoothly, though you have to be a little careful with streaks, and it lasted really well.  Without further ado, here are the photos...

Butter London Diamond Geezer swatch


Butter London Diamond Geezer swatch


Butter London Diamond Geezer swatch

Happy hump day everyone - only two days until the weekend!

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Mani Monday: Fishtail Nails

This week, it being half term, I have a little more time on my hands (excuse the pun, that wasn't even remotely intentional) so was able to try out the fishtail manicure I saw at Lucy's Stash.  It wasn't really tricky at all, but I did make the error of using 4 colours rather than 3 so it didn't have quite the same effect.  I used all Barry M polishes: NP66 (White), GNP5 (Blueberry), GNP2 (Blackberry), NP319 (Silver Foil) and NP54 (Clear Basecoat, Topcoat and Nail Hardener). I've been using the clear topcot a lot recently because it really keeps polish chip free for a good few days - but it is irritating in that it doesn't ever seem to harden completely. I put this on on Sunday and I can still indent it if I put a nail into it. Maybe I need to really let the coats underneath dry completely completely. I don't know - if you have any thoughts, let me know in the comments below!

Barry M Fishtail nail art

Barry M Fishtail nail art

Barry M Fishtail nail art

Barry M Fishtail nail art

I'm linking up with Glitter and Gloss's Mani Monday again this week - looking forward to seeing what everyone else has been up to!


Thursday, 14 February 2013

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day!

I managed another midweek mani this week, all in honour of it being Valentine's Day today. One of my classes has become particularly keen on seeing my nail designs and trying to divert me by asking for step by step instructions on how to recreate them! Yesterday I mentioned that I was going to try a V Day design so they provided me with a hand and nail outline, with a company logo, for me to try out my ideas on - bless.

Anyway, this is what I came up with...

Butter London Chancer and Sinful Colors Ruby Ruby Valentine's Day nail art

Butter London Chancer and Sinful Colors Ruby Ruby Valentine's Day nail art

For the base I used Sinful Colors in Ruby Ruby (I think I picked this up in the US somewhere, probably CVS or Walgreens, for my Amy Winehouse Halloween costume in 2010) - it went on really smoothly and gave a lovely glossy finish, Barry M White for my accent nail base, Butter London Chancer for the sparkly red heart and Models Own white nail art pen/striper brush for the little white hearts.

What do you think? Have you tried out a Valentine's mani this year? What plans have you got for the big day?

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Pretty Blue Flowers

I've been meaning to try stamping on my nails since I got my Bundle Monster plates a few weeks ago, but time has been very limited. I haven't got any Konad polishes yet, I'm trying to decide whether or not to get any - what are your thoughts? I found that the polishes I used didn't come out so brightly, but actually I like the look they produced.

BM16 stamping plate
BM16 plate

Barry M Blueberry and White with BM16 stamping plate
I used Barry M Gelly Blueberry (gnp5) and Barry M White (np66) and then swapped them over for the stamping.

Barry M Blueberry and White with BM16 stamping plate

I'm linking up again with Mani Monday and the Nail Files - come have a look at what everyone else has been up to!


What do you think of accent nails? Yay or nay? I rather like them at the moment!

Monday, 11 February 2013

Flowers on the Garish Side

I've seen some amazing flower nail art recently (particularly Renee's and Lindsey's) but I didn't have time to attempt anything quite as fancy last week, so on Googling 'how to paint flowers on nails' I found this video which seemed straightforward enough to try for a mid-week mani. For some reason I chose silly garish colours, but it was fun nevertheless!

Rimmel Pear Drop flower nail art
(Photo with flash)

Rimmel Pear Drop flower nail art

Rimmel Pear Drop flower nail art




Sunday, 10 February 2013

Champagne French Manicure

I'm still really into my Rimmel Matte Finish and love that it extends the life of a manicure, so I tend to keep it glossy for a day or two, then touch up the tips and put the matte over the top to keep it going another couple of days.  I've still got awful staining on my nails from the Sally Hansen Blue Me Away I used about 2 weeks ago, so I have to polish my nails all the time until it grows out.  This is the mani I started last week with...

Nails inc Basil Street and Models Own Champagne French manicure
I used Nails Inc Basil Street (which I got free with Glamour magazine a few months ago - definite win) with Models Own Champagne - Champagne (love this shade and just yesterday got myself 6 new Models Own polishes which I'll be swatching over the next couple of weeks)

Nails inc Basil Street and Models Own Champagne French manicure

Nails inc Basil Street and Models Own Champagne French manicure

I'm pretty happy with how it turned out - and I'm told by Emily at blogmebeautiful that nudes are in this season for nails! (I'm not sure I'll stick to that, I like my bright colours too much...)

Happy polishing!

Sunday, 3 February 2013

United Nations Nails

This week has been such a busy week work-wise.  I think between Monday and today I have worked an 81 hour week (and been at school every day) - because I've been organising the school's Model United Nations conference, which went as smoothly as I could have hoped and everyone had a great time. I did find a quick MUN-free hour on Thursday night to paint my nails in a UN theme... and this was the result:




I used Boots 17 Lasting Fix in 'Heartbeat' as the base for the nails, with Barry M's Silver Foil for the tips - and for my accent nail, I did the United Nations logo freehand with Models Own Nail Art pen in white.  I topped it with my usual Butter London PD Quick.  It lasted pretty well for two days, with only nail tip wear so at the end of the second day I redid the tips and put Rimmel Matte Finish over the top, which made it look great for the last day of the conference. I definitely got a lot of amazed compliments for it and I have to admit, I was pretty chuffed with that world map myself!!