Tuesday, December 25, 2012

LEMMINGS ACHIEVED! (and new ones acquired)

Merry Jewishmas to me! I had a great day, how was yours?

As a rule I try to avoid lemmings. Most of the polishes I see swatched by my favorite bloggers are brands that are impossible to get in my country, and my budget is too limited at the moment to do online orders. (I've yet to see anywhere that charges under $24 shipping alone.) For example: OPI, China Glaze, and Color Club are available if you look reeeeally hard- I found one shop about an hour away from where I live that carries all three, and their selections are limited (plus OPI and CG go for ~$15 a bottle, so no way I'm buying those, at least Color Club is only ~$6). I can get a limited range of Orly at my local pharmacy, which has quickly elevated them to my favorite polish brand. Even Orly has a limited range, but what they do have is really pretty, so I'm not complaining!

Now, MAC is an interesting story- we do have a MAC store at my local mall, and I know they're pretty expensive to begin with, so the prospect of shelling out $11ish isn't as insane. And unfortunately, they also hold Mean & Green, which is a dupe for Orly's Space Cadet, which I have lusted after from the moment I laid eyes on it. But every time I went to try and buy it, they were out of stock.

Until today. I lucked out. They had it. THEY HAD IT. I have fulfilled my longest-standing, most desired lemming ever! GO ME! *flailing around*

My friend Hannah came over to spend the day, and of course polish hunting was on the menu. We meant to stay at our local mall, but after getting high off the success of snagging Mean & Green, we decided to head out to Tel Aviv, where the one store that has other brands is located. Plus, I've been looking for purple hair dye for a month or so with little luck, and Tel Aviv is a great source for finding weird things that no one else seems to have.

To our delight, we found a teeny little cosmetics store practically straight off the bus. And not only did they have a wild range of hair colors with the most delicious purple, but they had something I didn't even know I'd been lemming- Seche Vite topcoat! I had become resigned to the fact that what everyone else considered the industry standard was something I could never obtain. And there it was. It was fairly pricey, but that I had to give a shot.

I'll probably do a SV comparison post with my current default topcoat (a domestic brand called Giora Sharvit). It'll have to wait until I find myself a proper desk job though- working in a coffee shop is a real nail killer. Especially when I'm working kitchen shifts and have to wear latex gloves. Did you know that the powder inside latex gloves is completely ruinous to your polish? I do.

Unfortunately, when we went to the store with the big name brands, I found something both wonderful and awful: They have the new OPI Skyfall collection. And man if I didn't immediately start craving three of them on sight. I mean, I've seen swatches for them all over the place, but in person- WHOA! I want to buy Live and Let Die, On Her Majesty's Secret Service, and The Living Daylights. As if that weren't bad enough, I finally saw Just Spotted The Lizard in person for the first time. I know that nearly every single company has a dupe for that these days. I even thought after seeing a hundred and one swatches of the thing that I was pretty over it. But in person, hot damn! I need this in my life.

So now I need to save up $60 to buy lots and lots of OPI polish. Sigh. Too bad I'm too old for Hannukah gelt!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

I haven't died, I promise!

...I just have no time frame in which to take pictures these days. And my manis generally don't last very long because of my job. I'm usually working 6 AM- 3 PM these days, and by the time I get home it's too dark to properly take photos.

Hopefully some time soon I will have at least one of the following: A job that is not minimum wage, a job that does not ruin my nails, a job that pays enough for me to buy a camera which takes good quality macro shots, or all of the above.

This December has been "greenicure month" for me, I've been wearing nothing but green. I might make this an annual thing :). To be fair, mostly it's just plain polish, no designs, since I have to replace it pretty much every day. But this week I did a marble and managed to stretch it for two days before it chipped off! And tonight I'm doing newspaper nails. There's even a minute chance that I'll have time to grab a sunlight photo before work, since I'm starting a little later tomorrow.

Anyhow, since I've done nothing in this post but complain, I'm going to wrap it up here. Hope to be blogging more frequently soon!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

NOTD and a new collection

I have a holo skittles mani for you today, with a diagonal French over it. Originally it was just the holo, but when it started to show a little tipwear I decided to give it a new lease on life.


Unfortunately when I applied topcoat, it smudged the black somewhat and left small streaks on some nails, but I don't think it's too noticeable here.

Due to my less than excellent camera work, you can't really see the holo in these, but let me assure you, it's a fantastic holo. As a matter of fact, I fell so much in love with these particular holos that afterwards I went back and stupidly bought the entire collection. Now that I own all the colors, I would probably use a slightly different combination of skittles here, but I still like what I have on now.

I have only owned one entire collection of something before (Chic Metalix) and I accumulated that one over a couple of months. This is the first time I've bought an entire collection in two days.

Click the jump for details and more photos!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

The convention!

So I did it, and it went well!

This past Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday was Icon, the biggest annual Israeli Sci-fi and Fantasy convention. I opened a nail art booth with all kinds of geeky designs. I posted a teaser last week with my superhero wheel, and now I'm back with the rest of my designs.

Sadly, I wasn't able to bring a camera with me to the convention, so I only have photos of my sample wheels. Hopefully next time I'll be able to get a camera! Especially since there were customers who had me do designs I didn't do samples of- one girl did all ten fingers with Disney princess themes- an apple for Snow White, a glass slipper for Cinderella, etc.

Two other things of note, before I begin the picture spam: One, I had plenty more ideas than I actually created, so if there are some gaping holes in my geekdom please forgive me! I'm hoping to have a more comprehensive set of geek designs by the time the next con rolls around. Two, this time I partnered with my friend Hannah, and some of her designs will be featured here.


Starting with the geek basics of course, Star Trek and Star Wars! I wouldn't be the geek I am today without these very powerful influences in my childhood. Plus my parents met at a Star Trek convention, so there's that! It's in my DNA and everything! 

(I don't know what happened with that Darth Vader nail... I'm gonna have to redo it for sure.)

Hit the jump for lots (and lots and lots) more designs!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Coming up soon: Convention, round two!

Hello dear readers!

It's been ages since my last post, mainly because I work at a cafe at the moment, and 99% of the time when I get home my nails are destroyed. Polish doesn't last more than a few hours in this line of work.

HOWEVER! I have managed to do some swatches, which I will be posting soon. And more importantly, I'm doing a convention!

This past Passover I opened a nail art booth at a Sci-fi convention, and now I'm going to do it again in a month or so from now. I've begun preparing nail wheels to showcase my work, and today I'm posting the first one.

This one is superhero insignia, predominantly Marvel because I'm kind of a Marvel fangirl :D I'll probably do at least one more comic-oriented wheel, although that'll be a mix of villains and heroes. We'll see if I even spill over into a third. In the meantime, there are lots of geeky but not-comic things coming up soon- I'll post them as I finish them!

What do you think?

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

NOTD: Water marble, Loki edition!

So like nearly everyone else on the internet these days, I've been fangirling like a boss over The Avengers, specifically over Loki. Well, specifically over Tom Hiddleston. If you'll allow me a hipster moment, I have kind of always had a thing for movie villains*, so I guess this is pretty predictable for me!

*Before you ask, Usrula is my favorite Disney villian. The Little Mermaid isn't specifically my favorite Disney film overall, but Ursula is just the best ever :D I'll probably do nails inspired by her some day.

Also, I've always been a Slytherin at heart, so even though Slytherin is green and silver, I do love me that green-gold motif. I'll probably do a lot of green-gold nail art and jewelry over time.

On to pictures!

Left hand shade
More pictures under the jump

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

NOTD: Nubs! And pink!

I mercilessly filed my nails down recently, now they're the shortest they've been since I stopped biting. Why would I do such a terrible thing? Sadly, having long nails sort of interfered with playing the harp. A little. Well, a lot. I hope eventually I'll figure out how to play the harp with long nails, but for now they keep getting caught in the strings and end up making a horrific buzzing sound. And when they get caught too far in, it hurts!

So. Short nails. That still doesn't excuse the pink, but I decided to try it out. It's only barely pink, anyway, it's seriously blackened.



I have to say, having short nails makes it much harder to be neat. I've pretty much mastered the technique of applying polish without needing any cleanup, but somehow with short nails that all goes out the window. Also the topcoat completely smeared my design. It's frustrating, because I waited around twenty minutes before applying topcoat and this *still* happened!

I used one coat of Orly Moonlit Madness over black, and the silver is a no-name brand which I love to use in marbling. Oooh, maybe I'll try marbling next! It's been a while since I've done that! It's also been a while since I seriously sat down to make jewelry. I should do that too.

I think my ADHD is coming out. Now I'm in the mood for potato chips.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Chic Metalix, part 2

I'm finally getting on with this collection! Only four more to go after this.

I decided to dive into the redheads of the family, since these colors seem to be a good representative of the weather around here.

Unfortunately, my sunlight pictures all came out on the blurry side, I'm still getting used to my new camera. On the bright side (no pun intended!) pretty colors!

Individual swatches and reviews under the jump.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

NOTD: Crackle skittles

Hi all! NOTD and then a quick update.



So this is a set of Chic Metalix under a lovely black crackle that I've worn here before by a German brand called P2. Not everything in this picture has been swatched yet , but they're coming!

Life update under the jump:

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

WOW Cosmetics

I think this is an appropriate subject for my "triumphant" return to swatch posts, as in "Wow, it's been ages since you did a swatch post!"

Well yeah, it has. I don't really have any excuses either. I know I'm going to have to retake a large number of my swatch photos- looking back at them over two months later, I'm not really happy with any of them. The ones from WOW are ok, hence this post now.

So here's the deal with WOW cosmetics: They're a domestic brand, and they have some really affordable cosmetics, plus their spread of polish colors is interesting. They don't have a ton of colors yet, but from what I've seen I like what they have.

I have three for you today:

Click the jump for close-ups and reviews!

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Well, I just made a breathtakingly bad life choice!

Hi there, my darling nonreaders.

Let's skip over the "omg I haven't posted in aaaaages!!!1!!one!" formality and conclude universally that I'm a lazy failure at life, without the pretty words.

I might post some swatch pictures I have archived tonight. I might not. I hope so though. But that's not why I'm here right now (also I'm at work, so no access to those pictures anyway).

I bought a camera today. You see, apparently my credit card company was supposed to have been offering me all these deals for the past six years, but somehow I slipped through their cracks and never got any of the discounted crap they are constantly bugging their other customers about. So now all of a sudden they woke up and realized hey, in six years people rack up a HUGE amount of points even if they have pretty modest spending habits! And woah, most of those points are expiring soon! We'd better offer her something fast!

So offer they did. And stupidly, I accepted. Most of their potential offers were boring but practical things like towels and vaccum cleaners, but the camera was something else. I've always kind of wished I'd gotten in early on the whole youtube vlog thing, because back when that kind of thing was just starting out, I actually had an interesting life. It could have been a fun diversion.

Now? Now I'm almost 25 and I've done virtually nothing interesting with my life whatsoever. On the surface it seems like I should be cool: I have a harp, I make jewelry, I do nail art (even geeky nail art!), and I'm a geek, which is apparently what the cool kids are these days. But in practice I'm about as boring as dirt, because I get lazy or depressed and spend most of my time derping on the internet looking at all the interesting stuff other people do, instead of doing it on my own.

A camera could change that though. If I learn how to trick my own psyche well enough, I could actually guilt trip myself into having a life. I could start a vlog! Then if I actually stick with the commitment of posting once per (???) I'd have to actually do stuff worth talking about on camera. If all I have to say is "well, I got home today and read some fanfiction, then I scrolled through tumblr for a while, then I prepared some frozen shnitzel for dinner and went to sleep" then I won't be able to make a vlog. And if I don't make a vlog, then the money I spent on my camera will have been wasted. And that is just sad, considering it's A- a really good camera, and B- a really expensive camera. ($1,125 before the discount, $460 after. No I could not afford that even post mega-discount. At least it's in installments...)

Alternatively, I could guilt trip myself in practicing harp frequently enough to occasionally record and upload music. Or do tutorials in something, meaning I'd actually have to clean my room.

What I guess I'm trying to say here is: This blog will no longer be solely for nail polish and jewelry.

"But Leah," none of you say, "Don't you already have a personal blog?"

You're absolutely right, nobody! I do have a personal blog. But consider the fact that it is embarrasingly derpy and fangirly, and I'd like this one to be more of a thinking blog. Or at least a derping eloquently blog (fat chance). I might crosspost things now and then, if it's pertinent to both blogs.

It's entirely possible that this project will be abandoned within a week. Or a day. I can tell you that not having a life is freakisly boring, but it's so easy! I don't know if I have the willpower to stop being boring. But I'm sure as hell gonna try, or at least convince myself for the next few hours that I'm going to try. It usually goes right out the window the second I get home (fandom is really difficult to pull away from, you guys).

I have to stop rambling now. It's long over time.

Hey you! If you actually read this entire thing you are my new best friend. Have a cookie!

Friday, May 25, 2012

NOTD: Addicted to turquoise

Ok, there's a clear pattern in my choice of colors lately. Behold:

Yeah... as pretty as this came out, it's time for a new color scheme in my life. I haven't done anything outside of blue-green at all in the past month at least, huh? Except for a two-day stint with Essie's Smokin' Hot, which I didn't even bother photographing.

Not to say that I don't like this mani- I do! I just need to pace this color a little more.

So most of my fingers are OPI's Cuckou For This Color topped by Essie's Matte About You. I love mattes, i really need to do them more often! Accent finger is Cuckou again, but topped by a layer of Essence's Choose Me! and Revlon's Blue Mosaic. Picture is with three days of wear, although I reapplied the matte because after a day or two it wasn't as matted anymore, it looked more like a dull shine.

Funny thing, accent nails are becoming incredibly popular here lately. I've always done them, but apparently they're in fashion now because someone from the local Big Brother wore it? Weird. I don't watch Big Brother, never have, never will. But I guess it set a good trend?

I got myself a very pale grey, so i'm going to give newspaper nails another shot tonight. I've done them with sheet music before, but I'm gonna use an actual newspaper, I think :)

Friday, May 18, 2012

NOTD: Crackle + glitter + turquoise = gorgeous!

Hi everyone!

I've been neglectful lately both of my nail art and my blog here. But I have a fun NOTD to share with you today!

Remember a while back how I promised that Perfect Chic Peacock would look awesome under a black crackle? Well it does!


More about this under the jump:

Monday, May 7, 2012

NOTD: Green to blue gradient

This was a fun experiment. It didn't go perfectly, but considering the circumstances, I think it turned out really great.

So, do you want to know what eight layers of nail polish (including top and base) looks like?

And now you know! Honestly this caught the light a little weird- in photos it makes the transition from green to blue pretty abruptly, but in reality it's much more gradual. It's definitely at least in part due to Chic Peakock, which always comes out a bit bluer than it really is. But either way, I really enjoyed doing this, and I'll wear it for as long as I can!

Unfortunately since it's so heavy on the polish, I predict much shrinkage in this manicure's future. I did everything I could- wrapping my tips and whatnot, but physics will be physics.

Here are the colors, listed from top to bottom:
  • Green Olive by Perfect Chic
  • Meet Me Under the Mistletoe by Orly
  • Cuckou For This Color by OPI
  • Peacock by Perfect Chic
  • Smashing Blue by Perfect Chic (this is on my next Metalix swatch set)
  • I used a black base to make the colors pop, 393 by Wow Cosmetics.
So yeah. Pretty heavy on the colors there! It's verrrry slightly dented in a couple of spots, but they're minor and not worth redoing.

It's been awhile since I've done a swatch post, so I'll probably put one of those up next.

Friday, May 4, 2012

NOTD: Glitter gradient, French style. And Christmas?

Hello people!

I got China Glaze Twinkle Lights as a gift from a friend not too long ago. Now, it's a fairly Christmas-y color, which leaves me with two dilemmas: One, it's the summer, and two, I'm Jewish.

Oh well!

So I decided that since green and red and yellow are all kinda summery colors (especially when they're vivid), this is going to be a summer color. I actually have a summer dress that's nearly perfect for this polish, I'll post pictures at some point.

I've never done a glitter gradient before, but I really like how this one turned out, so I'll probably do it again in the future! Perhaps a full nail gradient too (I just picked up Revlon's Blue Mosaic today, it looks like that would be excellent in a gradient)


One frustration with this is that the black jelly I used was really difficult to work with. I don't think it normally would be, but the polish deteriorated after I did that booth a month ago and it sat in the sun for hours and hours :/ It's a pity, this was a really pretty black, for a nameless brand. It had a great jewel-tone feel. It still does, but now it takes a lot of effort to put on properly. I got myself a new black today, but when I got home I discovered it was a cream. I'll have to deal :P

I'm planning to go watch the Avengers when it's available in theaters here, and I'm going to be doing Avengers-themed nails to commemorate the occasion. It might be a good while before that happens (work is busy) but keep your eyes opened for that!

Monday, April 30, 2012

NOTD: Shattered mosaic

I just picked up Fowl Play by Orly last night, and I couldn't resist the temptation to give it a whirl today:

So that's Fowl Play- don't think of this as a proper swatch, because it's not really. But for the lighting it's in, that's pretty much a true to life color!

Now, the design- there are a lot of colorful things going on in this design, I tried for a mosaic-y kind of look. Mostly it's nameless brand random things, although you can see a bit of Essie Pouf Daddy in there (love that color, hate that name).

It is WAY sloppier up close, now that I'm looking at it. But I still like it! And I learned a few lessons trying this out, next time I'll probably do better!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

NOTD: Contrasting French fun

Hi everyone! I decided to try a bit of a style experiment here, and I have to say I really like the results:
Left hand

Right hand

Apologies for the sloppy right hand, I decided that doing cleanup would probably cause more harm than good.

The colors I used were WOW Cosmetics numbers 304 (the teal) and 315 (the purple)- I'm planning to do swatches and reviews on them pretty soon. Spoiler: I really like WOW Cosmetics! I'll probably get a lot of their colors, right now I have four.

See that dent on my left ring finger? Color me highly unimpressed with OPI top coat + drip dry formula. I feel like this is one of those lessons I have to relearn every once in a while. Usually I go with domestic brand topcoats, which work just great. But I've got this in my collection (cost me a pretty penny, too!) and every now and again I say to myself "You know, it's OPI, it's got to be good!" and then I regret it pretty soon after. Seriously, I did nothing for an hour, and somehow that still got dented on my way to taking the picture. The stuff I use normally is dry enough to function within two minutes and diamond hard in ten. Why, OPI, why?? You make such pretty polishes, why does your topcoat suck?

To end on a positive note: I really do love this manicure! I threw this together pretty quickly- took me about ten minutes tops, not counting dry time. I'll probably take the time to do it more neatly in the future, but this is a great way to have pretty nail design quickly, and I'll probably be doing this manicure again.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Chic Metallix, part 1


It's my inaugural swatch post! Well, technically that was yesterday. But that was a disaster, so let's have some selective amnesia and focus on the actually good swatches!

Allow me to introduce you to Perfect Chic, another domestically-produced brand. It's actually manufactured here too, which cannot be said for Jade (or Life, which I'll get to in another post). A large portion of my collection is composed of Perfect Chic polish, for a couple of reasons. One- they're affordable, without being crappy quality. Two- they have a really nice range of basic colors. I've had to fill out the basics a bit with some other brands, but for a long time after I started collecting polishes, it was almost entirely Chic.

This particular set is from a line which they call "Chic Metallix",  although that might be a slight misnomer- they're not so much metallic as densely packed glass flecks (I'm going to say "microglitter" for the rest of the post, but I think they're really glass flecks), with varying levels of frosty finish. The end result is rarely metallic, although it is quite shiny. So far I only have four from this collection, although I plan to eventually get all of them, even the pinks! I think there are ten in total, although it could be a couple more.

Follow the white rabbit for swatches and reviews!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Fail! (...and one swatch)

Well, I spent a large part of the day swatching, and upon closer examination, my what a mess I've made! Behold the wreck I presumed to call a swatch:

So clearly, there are a few issues here: 
  1.  Get hold of the camera manual (it's borrowed) and learn how to take proper macro images. 
  2. Figure out lighting. This was taken indoors, with flash. Below the jump there's another one in sunlight, but that one didn't fare any better. 
  3. Learn how to do freaking swatches! The polish is a huge mess, running everywhere, and I need to make it neater. So, as long as I'm posting this up, I might as well talk about the polish too, right? More swatch talk, as well as more fail after the jump!

Upcoming swatches + Konadlicious giveaway

Hi everyone!

First order of business: I have the next few days off because of a national holiday, so I finally have time to do swatches! Hopefully over today and tomorrow I'm going to take enough swatch photos for a good 6-7 entries at least, and we can finally get this party started. Who knows, I might even get the first entry up today! I've also been working on some new jewelry lately, so I'm going to get pictures of those up, I hope.

Second order of business: Konadlicious is doing a giveaway! She's another blogger who combines polish with other interests, in her case vintage clothing. I'm fairly bohemian in my own fashion choices, but I LOVE what she wears. Also when I want to get dressed up, I usually end up gravitating towards more vintage styles, so I love looking to her for ideas.

So an announcement to the echo-y silence that is my following: Go check out her amazing, AMAZING giveaway! It's over here.

See you soon! (should that be my official sign-off? Should I HAVE an official sign-off? Does asking this as I'm signing off make me sound silly?)

Monday, April 16, 2012

Delusions of grandeur

Hehe, here I was innocently thinking that by now I'd be so accomplished: I'd send out my Etsy orders, I'd make my post about the Olamot booth, I'd have lunch prepared for tomorrow, anything.

You know what I've done? I've finally put together an RSS feed for the polish blogs that I've been following for months anyway. So productive of me, huh? It's 3 AM and I need to make at least one bracelet by tonight becuase I've reached the deadline of when I can ship to her. I think that's all I'll do for tonight.

I already have at least six posts in mind to do "when I have time" which is basically going to be never. Not even counting the gajillions of swatches I want to post of all the Israeli brand polishes I have!

Monday, April 9, 2012

I'm "back"

This post is just here to reassure people that yes, it's really me, and yes, once the holiday is over you'll probably be flooded with polish posts and jewelry posts. Probably especially nail posts. *yawn* now I have to take a shower and go to bed (and possibly do my nails somewhere along the way) because I am getting up at stupid o'clock to go to work. Bye!
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