Glitter, Stamping, and Holo?! Oh, My!

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Liz says… Hello, Darlings. Today is my birthday and I really wanted to do something nice for today’s manicure! I was having a difficult time figured out exactly what to do… until my February Ipsy bag came along. This month I received Odette, which Zoya describes as a “sultry orchid maroon cream.” That’s a pretty sexy description for a purple polish, so of COURSE I was sold. Putting one of the MoYou – London stamping plates that I received for my birthday to good use, I used Color Club’s Miss Bliss to stamp some Gustav Klimt inspired designs. Oh, can you hear my swooning? I apologize because it’s really loud… I just can’t help it! I love how Miss Bliss stands against Odette, the pink really holds its own and elevates a beautiful, neutral purple manicure into something fit for a princess. I just love it so much, but then I get carried away because…

Delftware Inspired Stamping

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Liz says… Hello, Darlings! I’m warning you now, I am in a stamping frenzy over here! I’ve always overlooked stamping as a form of nail art that was for other people due to my lack of stamping skills and my serious lacking of the patience to gain them. It turns out that I may have been selling myself short! While I’m not an experienced stamper, I have become an overnight advocate of having the right tools because suddenly I have a stamping set that basically applies itself. Suddenly through stamping I have access to nail designs that I would never have attempted before. For example, I love the look of Delftware! That inspiration firmly in mind, I started out by applying a white foundation by laying down three thin coats of OPI‘s My Boyfriend Scales Walls. This is one of my go-to polishes for nail art because it lends such a clean, crisp palette to build…

Love Lifts Us Up: A Valentine’s Day Manicure!

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Liz says… Hello Darlings, and Happy Valentine’s Day to you! Regardless of your relationship status, gender, or age it feels like Valentine’s Day is a big deal. Personally, I’m not a huge fan… I don’t need a corporate holiday to make me realize how much I adore my fiance (it’s a lot!), and I have grown to resent the expectations that can often weigh heavy around this time of year. Despite how bitter I sound above, the one thing that I do appreciate about Valentine’s Day is the celebration of love. I LOVE love! To celebrate love through lacquer, I was inspired by the great 1982 love song “Up Where We Belong.” Love lifts us up where we belong – where the eagles cry, on a mountain high! Borrowing imagery from the lyrics, I turned to one of my MoYou stamping plates (Suki # 8 to be specific) to help place silver clouds and flocks of…

Blue Skittle Nail Art!

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Liz says… Hello, Darlings! Happy Tuesday! When I was last at my local drug store buying bags of holiday Reese’s cups I came across the gorgeous Beaming Blue from the Maybelline Brocade collection. This polish is SO BEAUTIFUL – a sheer, glittery blurple with a faint duochrome shimmer that flashes between electric blue and soft violet (sadly the duochrome flash didn’t translate to the nail at all). Smitten at first sight, I bought myself a bottle and set it on my desk until I figured out how to wear it. The time is now! Hang along for the journey and I’ll share what I came up with. Inspiration hit me hard, and started pulling me in all sorts of directions. Rather than limit myself I decided that a blue skittle nail art manicure was the perfect way to go! Starting off with two coats of Elevation Polish’s Silversword as my base I selected a few…

Abstract Mariposa: A Fluttering of Vivid Color

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Lisa says. . . In case you haven’t noticed, New York Fashion Week is underway, and anybody who’s anybody is jumping from one catwalk to the next.  Well, maybe “jumping” is the wrong word.  “Skiing” might be more appropriate, what with the sidewalks still heaped with snow, and more on the way. Brrrrr. It used to be that NYFW was conducted “under the tents” at Bryant Park.  Then, as the event grew, it was moved to Lincoln Center.  Nowadays, it’s All Over The Place, as the celebrity manicurist/lacquer-maven Deborah Lippmann noted in her Instagram feed yesterday, “Baby it’s cold outside! And none of my fashion week stops are anywhere near the others.” I’ve been watching the event’s live feed, from the comfort of The Polish Room (a/k/a Liz’s re-purposed bedroom), where tropical daydreams have inspired the colorful abstract butterflies that flit across today’s nails… Don’t know about you, but for me, this mani evokes sunshine…

A Sweet Surprise: Incoco 2014 Valentine’s Day Collection

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:: PRESS SAMPLE :: Lisa says… Recently, our letter carrier delivered a sweet surprise from the fun folks at Incoco: an envelope stuffed with the five newly-released nail wrap (aka nail “appliques”, “stickers” or “strips”) designs, from the brand’s 2014 Sweet Surprise Valentine’s Day Collection. These adorable press and sticks are great for those fashionistas whose nail art skills leave something to be desired; or who haven’t the time or inclination to swing by the salon.  In today’s post, I put these pretties to the test… First up, let it be known that I’m an absolute sucker for calligraphy and typeface, so you can safely bet that Yours Truly, Incoco’s romantic fuschia script “penned” in the language of love (against a background of soft pastel pink), tickled my nail art fancy. For my second attempt, I went with a semi-skittled look, combining Yours Truly (because I couldn’t resist),  with the “lovey-dovey doodles” of Love Spell (center…

Bruised Rose Petal Gradient

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Liz says… Hello, Darlings! For today’s post I pulled out two polishes that I’ve actually swatched before. From the A England Burne-Jones Dream collection I decided to use Briar Rose and Sleeping Palace. Together, in a subtle gradient, these polishes help to capture the beauty of a rose once its petals have been bruised and begin to darken. When I was younger I would participate in tons of performances – dance recitals, school plays, jazz ensembles, etc. If there was an event that warranted bouquets of flowers from doting parents, I was there with bells on!   After my performances I would take those bouquets and dry my favorite flowers. My favorite part of the process was when you could see the fresh beauty of each petal merging with a darker, dryer fate. Now it sounds incredibly morbid, but at the time I thought it was cool how the colors would change gradually at first and…

Get In Gear with Steampunk Nails

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Lisa says… I’m what you might call an accidental watch collector.  Eleven of them, so far, mostly of the inexpensive Timex variety. You know…the brand that takes a lickin’, but keeps on tickin’?   So long as the battery lasts, that is. Unlike my children, whose long ago replaced smartphones with any need for a watch, I’m old school, and like the security of knowing that time is always on my wrist. What ticks me off, however, is the torturous challenge of changing out watch batteries.  Therein the reason I buy cheap watches.  Once the battery dies, I toss the dead watch in a drawer and purchase a new one one.  Some might find that wasteful, but dear reader, here’s something you must know:  I’ve some great plans for those inactive watches! You see, I’m holding out for the innards, or the guts of the watch:  those fabulous metal gears, hands, and wheels! If ever I…

Green, Gold, and Black Dotticure!

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Liz says… Tried and true favorites make me happy – from a beloved TV show (the fiance and I are currently marathoning Stargate SG1), a favorite soda (Fresca all the way), or a much-loved stuffed animal (Cooney The Tail-less Raccoon… don’t laugh at the name, I was very young and not terribly imaginative with naming conventions) there are things in your life that you will always return to. When it comes to manicures, dotticures are my personal tried and true favorites. Using my handy tools I can take different polishes and effortlessly create works of art within minutes. Like the best recipes, this is a ridiculously simple technique with a surprisingly impressive final product. Anyone can do it, and I always encourage my friends that are newly introduced to nail art to try their hand at a dotticure. Today’s look came together after a quick looting of my stash. Without a plan I laid down the green base color and started dotting to my heart’s content. The…

Perfect Polish Pairings – Fire Queen and Stroke of Brilliance!

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Liz says… Hello, Darlings! Today I’m sporting some major lobster hands, but let me tell you… it’s totally worth it! On my nails I’m pairing Rescue Beauty Lounge‘s Fire Queen along with Essie‘s Stroke of Brilliance… and I love them together. LOVE! Darlings… I can barely type right now. I adore this combo! Three thin coats of Fire Queen gives me full coverage that beautifully levels itself over the nail. Normally I wouldn’t be singing the praises of a three coater, but I’ll make an exception since Fire Queen is a jelly and well executed jelly polishes always curry special favor in my book. One heavy coat of Stroke of Brilliance gives even glitter distribution without having to rely on dabbing the glitter around. This periwinkle topper is insane, and I’ve been experimenting wearing it over all different base colors since I bought this beauty last year. It seems to play well with every color…