Monday, November 30, 2009

NYC Taxi Yellow Creme

I love yellow.  It's so cheerful and fun.  Unfortunately, with my fair skin tone, I normally shy away from wearing anything even remotely yellow.  That's why I've waffled back and forth over buying a yellow polish.  I finally decided to take the plunge with this .94 cent NYC polish named Taxi Yellow Creme.  And I'm pretty much in love with Taxi Yellow Creme.  While the application wasn't great - the polish was streaky and even with three coats is not totally opaque - the color is spot on.  I think a base coat would really benefit the application of this polish.

Taxi Yellow Creme is a light canary yellow - possibly a lemon meringue - with almost indiscernible tiny specks of glitter (I didn't even notice the glitter until I held the bottle up to light).  I really like this, and at .94 cents, it's a must-have.



I photographed Taxi Yellow Creme with a Fiesta Sunflower plate as my background.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Sally Hansen Chrome "Nail Makeup"

I love that this stuff is called "Nail Makeup" as opposed to just polish.  What I also love about this polish is the color.  'Platinum Chrome' is like aluminum foil with a solid, burnished shine.  I find this polish to be very similar to those in the China Glaze Khrome collection, and since this polish is no longer sold, the Khrome collection is the best way to achieve a similar result.



Platinum Chrome applies nicely, covering with just one coat (I used two though), and dries very fast.  I applied this polish this morning, then went horseback riding and later did the dishes, and I don't have a single chip yet.  Oh, and I forgot to put on a top coat too!  I'm actually pretty impressed that this hasn't chipped to tell you the truth - it took quite a beating today.



As you can see, I used Konad plate m64 with the techno-y design.  It reminds me of those pictures in elementary school with the black background and neon laser beams shooting everywhere.  But it also has a kind of architectural feel, which is cool.

Hope everyone had a nice weekend!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Konad m63 with Color Club In Bloom

A very quick attempt at using a new image on plate m63...

Not nearly as neat and tidy as I'd like, but since I'm spending the day trapped inside working on final papers, it's good enough.
I used Color Club In Bloom for the pink design and a plain white for the french tips.


Here is a close up to see the design a bit better, since it did not photograph well.



I like how the design looks like feathers, although in the pink, it looks a bit more like flames.

Hope everyone is having a nice weekend!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Pumpkin Pecan Cheesecake


For Thanksgiving, I made a delicious Pumpkin Pecan Cheesecake.
Since it was so fabulous, I just had to share the recipe.


Ingredients
Spiced wafers, butter, white sugar, brown sugar, canned pumpkin, eggs, cinnamon, nutmeg, pumpkin pie spice, cream cheese, whipping cream, vanilla, cornstarch, caramel topping, and pecans.


Start by crushing 25 spiced wafers and 1/4 cup pecans in a food processor.  I like Swetzel's, but any type will work.  Mix them with 1/4 cup melted butter, 2 heaping tablespoons white sugar, and 2 heaping tablespoons brown sugar.  Press onto the bottom of a springform cheesecake pan.  Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.


Next, stir together 3/4 cup white sugar, 3/4 cup canned pumpkin, 3 egg yolks, 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, and 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg.
Compost those egg shells!

In a separate bowl, beat together 3 (8 ounce) blocks of cream cheese.  I use one light, and two regular.  Mix until smooth and fluffy.  Add 3/4 cup white sugar, 1 egg, 1 egg yolk, and 2 tablespoons whipping cream.  Continue to beat - the mixture will become fluffier.  Add 1 tablespoon cornstarch and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract (and beat just until mixed).


Mix the pumpkin mixture with the cream cheese.  Beat until smooth.



Pour into prepared springform pan.  Bake for 50-55 minutes.


The middle may still jiggle a bit, but a toothpick should come out clean.  Allow to cool and refrigerate until ready to serve.


Beat two cups of whipping cream with 3 tablespoons white sugar on high speed until whipped cream is formed.  Spread whipped cream on top of cheesecake.  Top with stripes of caramel topping and 1/2 cup chopped pecans.  Serve immediately and enjoy!


Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

I hope everyone took a few moments today to remember what they are truly thankful for in life, be it family, friends, health, education, or even just nail polish.  Aside from all of the above -- which I am extremely thankful for -- today I remembered just how thankful I am for Quorn vegetarian 'turkey' roasts.  It made for a wonderful (and delicious!) Thanksgiving dinner.

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving.  Thanks for reading!

Now, on to the polish...
Due to lack of time (aka, I spent too much time cleaning my house and cooking!), I ended up doing a really simple Thanksgiving mani.  Nonetheless, it's a mani I really love.




Today I wore Zoya Jewell (one of my favorites) topped with Konad plate m64 using Konad special white polish.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Guest Polishers!

This evening we have two manicures on guest nails!  This afternoon, my sister and mother stopped by to try out Konad.  My sister used plate m64 and my mom chose one of my faux-nad plates (she loves cherries).  


I think they're pretty cute!

My sister used China Glaze Make an Entrance topped with Konad special white polish.





My mother used OPI Don't Think, Just Pink! (a favorite of mine) with cherries using Nicole Really, Really Red, China Glaze For Audrey, China Glaze Nasty, and OPI I Get a Kick Out of Gold.


I've been baking all evening and haven't yet painted my nails for Thanksgiving!  I'll share nail pictures tomorrow :)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

6 Free Zoya Polishes!

I'm a huge Zoya fan - I love that they are both vegan and free of harmful chemicals (more info here ).  That's why I can't wait for Friday!  Zoya just announced that on Black Friday (or 'Green Friday' as they've dubbed it) they will be gifting 6 free Zoya polishes with any $20 purchase.  At $7 a polish, you could buy three polishes and get nine!

The six free polishes are:
Tangy, Envy, Midori, Irene, Suvi, and Veruschka - and yes, they are all green.

Some of my favorite Zoya polishes are: Sweet, Zara, Barbie, Brooke, Jewell, and Whitney.

This offer begins on Thursday evening at 5:00 and lasts for 24 hours.  Use code GREENFRIDAY.
Learn more here !

update: Zoya started the promo early - you can use GREENFRIDAY anytime between now and Friday at 5:00 pm!  Enjoy!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Do YOU Lilac It?

Today I was planning on posting a thank you to all 15 of my fabulous followers.  Yet when I logged on this evening, I was surprised to see not 15 of you but 27!  Thanks to the lovely Brooke at Getcha Nails Did for mentioning Babbling Brooke in "New Blogs on the Block" and thank you also to all of my wonderful 27 followers for your support!  And thank you to my fantastic mother for being coerced into sharing my blog with her friends.

Please let me know if there are ever any polishes or designs you would like me to try out - I am always open to suggestions!  And of course, I love all of your comments.  Thanks so much everyone!

Now for the nails...

In celebration of it being almost Thanksgiving (and therefore almost an extra long weekend - yay!), I decided to try something new.  What do you think?







I started by painting my nails with two coats of OPI Do You Lilac It, the color that started my purple polish obsession.  Do You Lilac It covers very well with just two coats and applies very smoothly.  It is a gorgeous light lilac cream.  It looks similar to Done Out in Deco in the bottle, but Done Out in Deco has a grayer undertone than Do You Lilac It (and personally, I like Do You Lilac It more).



Next I added a fishnet pattern using Konad plate m57 and China Glaze Fly.  (You can click on any pictures to enlarge).




For the next step, I painted diagonal lines using Zoya Zara (another purple favorite!).  I followed the fishnet pattern, which helped keep them pretty straight.  Sorry for the messy nails - this picture is pre-cleanup!





Finally, I added rhinestones on my ring fingers along the line between the two purple polishes.  I wish I had clear or purple rhinestones, but the blue ones go pretty well.

To add the rhinestones, I poured a few into a plate (a Fiesta plate, of course!) and then picked them up (upside down) with the brush from my Seche Vite, so the Seche Vite got on the bottom of each one.  Then I slid each one onto my nail and topped everything with a thick coat of Seche Vite.





so here are my tools:


China Glaze Fly
OPI Do You Lilac It?
Zoya Zara
Konad m57
Konad blue rhinestones
and although missing from the photo op, Seche Vite top coat


So let me know.  Do You Lilac it?

Thanks again to all of my fabulous followers!  Have a great Tuesday.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Konad Houndstooth





Lately, I've been completely obsessed with Houndstooth.  I want it all: houndstooth coat (of course), houndstooth scarf & mittens, houndstooth dress, houndstooth tights, houndstooth rain boots, houndstooth purse -- the list could go on and on (and amazingly, I found all of those things at Target - but restrained myself from purchasing).  So naturally, I had to have houndstooth nails.  My most recent Konad purchase was driven by my NEED to get Konad plate M63 with the houndstooth design (as well as this design and this design).  So here it finally is: my traditional houndstooth nails.  And I'm totally in love.

For this design, I used my french mani polish, which is in a nondescript unmarked bottle, as well as Konad special black polish.  It was pretty easy to do -- except on my thumb nails, since they are a bit longer than my other nails.  For my thumbs, I had to stamp twice, first covering the bottom on my nail and then the top.  This was a little difficult to line up, so it may be a better pattern for people with shorter nails (like me!).

ps: look carefully at my middle finger -- I must have flipped the pattern by accident!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Polish Wishlist







A work-in-progress list of every polish I'm lusting for.  Marking each off as I go (and of course, continually adding!)
Please suggest any polishes you love!

China Glaze Ruby Pumps (inspired by the ladies at tPF)
China Glaze Dorothy Who
China Glaze Emerald Sparkle
China Glaze Tree Hugger
China Glaze 2Nite
China Glaze Recycle (desperate for this!)

China Glaze Short and Sassy
China Glaze Rich and Famous
China Glaze Coconut Kiss
China Glaze Passion in the Pacific
China Glaze IDK
China Glaze DV8
China Glaze OMG
China Glaze Caribbean Blue
China Glaze Caribbean Temptation
China Glaze Custom Kicks
China Glaze For Audrey (refill)
China Glaze Liquid Leather

China Glaze Black Diamond
China Glaze Exceptionally Gifted
China Glaze Admire
China Glaze Skate Night
China Glaze Limbo Bimbo
China Glaze Make an Entrance (inspired by my sister)
China Glaze Shower Together

Color Club Revvvolution
Essie Mint Candy Apple (thanks to the wonderful ladies at tPF)
Essie Flirty Fuchsia
Essie Huckle Buckle
Essie Lovie Dovie
Essie Chinchilly
Essie Matte About You top coat
New York Summer Shanghai Surprise (refill)
New York Summer Funky Pink
OPI Ate Berries in the Canaries
OPI Pink Flamenco
OPI Shorts Story (refill)
OPI La-Paz-itively Hot (refill)
OPI The Lifeguard Makes me Blush (favorite color of all time - and impossible to find!)
OPI I'm Indi-a Mood for Love (refill)
OPI A Dozen Rosas
OPI Don't Know, Beets Me!
ORLY Sec'n Dry (per Liz's reccomendation)
Seche Vite top coat (refill)
Seche Vite ridge filler

Friday, November 20, 2009

Konad m60, Disclosure Policy





Konad m60
Inspired by the gold glitter in China Glaze Strawberry Fields, I used Konad plate m60 and OPI's gorgeous shimmery gold, I Get a Kick out of Gold.
The design is very subtle, even more so when photographed.  The image is a crosshatch (to see it better, click on the photo to enlarge).  This was a very easy image plate to use, even with non-Konad polish -- and I Get a Kick out of Gold is a pretty thin polish.




natural light



indoor

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Disclosure Policy


This policy is valid from 20 November 2009 This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me. This blog does not accept any form of cash advertising, sponsorship, or paid topic insertions. However, we will and do accept and keep free products, services, travel, event tickets, and other forms of compensation from companies and organizations. The owner(s) of this blog will never receive compensation in any way from this blog. The owner(s) of this blog is not compensated to provide opinion on products, services, websites and various other topics. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the blog owners. If we claim or appear to be experts on a certain topic or product or service area, we will only endorse products or services that we believe, based on our expertise, are worthy of such endorsement. Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer or provider. This blog does not contain any content which might present a conflict of interest. To get your own policy, go to http://www.disclosurepolicy.org






Thursday, November 19, 2009

China Glaze Strawberry Fields

This evening (this yucky, rainy evening) we have a very China Glazesque CG polish. By China Glazesque, I mean that it is absolutely loaded with tiny glitter. Only China Glaze can pull off putting this much glitter into polish and have it still apply perfectly smooth and cover evenly. Think Ruby Slippers (currently lusting after) or the entire OMG! collection.



China Glaze Strawberry Fields

Strawberry Fields is from China Glaze's Summer Days collection. I purchased it because 1) I heart the Beatles, 2) It was featured in a Lucky spread this summer, and 3) I simply cannot resist pink polish. Unlike Senorita Rosalita, Strawberry Fields is a redish pink - not a pinkish red. Like I said, it has loads of tiny flecks of gold glitter in it, giving my nails a fabulous gold shimmer whenever the light hits them. The camera just doesn't do this color justice at all. None of the shimmer and gold that you'd see in real life is captured.

I love this color -- it's fun and it is really versatile. That said, I wouldn't wear it on most job interviews, but it's a great year-round shade. It covered well with two coats (seen here) and dried fairly fast (not as fast as OPI, about the speed of Zoya). No top coat yet (planning on Konading them tonight!).

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Konad dots!



I used Konad plate m60 on my nails today (over OPI Senorita Rosalita).  I was in a huge rush, so it looks a lot sloppier than it should -- especially since this is a pattern that needs to be perfectly lined up (which I clearly did not do).  I would LOVE if Konad made a polka dot stamp, but this will tide me over until they do.  The dots range from large to small, although this effect is only really seen on my ring fingers and thumbs.  I found this to be a rather difficult stamp to use, not only because it needs to be lined up, but also because I had a lot of trouble getting the image to transfer correctly.  Also, I ended up with an odd line going through the largest row of dots on most of my nails.  Weird!  If I had taken more time, this would have looked much nicer, but I still think it's a fun stamp.

This shot was taken in natural afternoon sunlight (see the lovely fall leaves in the background?)  Senorita Rosalita looks more like the indoor image shown below.

OPI Senorita Rosalita




OPI Senorita Rosalita
I'd classify this as a pinkish-red (as opposed to a redish-pink).  It definitely has more red than pink, but there are still enough pink tones to it to keep it from being red-red.  Senorita Rosalita also has tons of teeny-tiny flecks of gold glitter, which give it a great shimmer.  Love this shade and the fantastic coverage -- only took two coats!
Here I used three coats (I only used two on my right hand and I can't tell the difference) topped with Seche Vite.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

nail polish and hope

I painted my nails this weekend... and then discovered that both of my cameras had been forgotten at my parents' house. By the time I rescued my cameras (Sunday evening), my nails had chipped terribly. Therefore my nails will need to be described: Zoya 'Zara' (see color here: http://caracita.blogspot.com/2009/08/zoya-polish-reviews-i-recently.html) with Konad flowers from plate m57.

The last time I wore Zara (early September), my Grandmother was in the hospital with a broken rib. She recovered quickly, came home, and healed. This Friday, she was taken to the ER and diagnosed with a variety of ailments, so after spending all night attempting to sleep in a straightbacked chair (while my wonderful fiance kept vigil), I came home and painted Zara on my nails. I guess my silly hope was that painting that same polish on my nails would mean that things would turn out as they did last time -- that she would recover quickly and return home soon. Even as my nails are chipping, my Grandmother is recovering. She's going to be here a while, but things are looking better.

No matter how small, it is nice to have something to put hope in.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Konad m63 with OPI and Nicole


OPI 'Mod About You'
How often do you find a polish that covers completely with just one coat? Quite rarely. But OPI 'Mod About You' covers totally with only one coat, plus it dries quickly. I bought this last spring and I think it is a really fun shade.  It looks almost white, with a hint of pale pink.



Konad plate m63



Nicole 'Volunteer Cheer'
I used Nicole 'Volunteer Cheer' for the Konad design.  The color looks almost red in the bottle (although not as red as it looks in this picture), but it paints as a beautiful dark fuchsia.  Even though it isn't a very thick polish, it worked pretty well for the Konad design.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

How to Konad!

Fellow bloggers (and grad students) Anne-Marie and Liz suggested that I give a step-by-step photo montage of the Konad process. Hope this helps make it all a little clearer!

1. Start by applying an awesome nail color. I chose China Glaze For Audrey, which is the perfect Tiffany blue. Essie Greenport is a very similar, although slightly greener, shade. Apply between two and three coats, allowing nails to dry between coats. I used just two coats here.


2. Once your last coat of polish is dry, it's Konad time! Each plate features about five patterns, so select one pattern for nails. I decided to go with the flower design on Konad m64.


3. You'll also need to choose a pattern color. I highly suggest using one of Konad's special polishes. My favorites are black and white. You can also use a regular polish if it is slightly thick. As you can see, Konad special polishes are thicker than normal polishes -- like an older polish.
I chose to use black because it is more visible (for pictures) on the pink stamper.


4. In my opinion, you need the Konad stamp and scraper. I know some people use an old credit card or gift card instead of the scraper, but the stamp is necessary. Some people also find that making the stamper rougher (with sandpaper) helps with image transfer. I have had no problems with image transfer, so I do not feel this is necessary.

I'm slightly mortified to photograph my filthy stamper and scraper. The scraper stains pretty easily and is difficult to clean. The plates, on the other hand, are simple to clean with just a bit of polish remover.

5. Begin by painting the image on the plate with the Konad special polish.






6. Completely cover the image with the color before quickly scraping it off with the Konad scraper. This will leave the polish embedded in the design only.




7. Working quickly, roll the Konad stamper over the image. This will lift the image from the Konad plate to the Konad stamper.






8. Immediatly ROLL the stamper across your nail, first lining the image up with the edge of your nail. It's ok if some of the design gets on your skin -- it's easy to clean up with a little polish remover when you're finished.



The image will lift right off of the stamper and transfer to your nail. You can use this on bare nails, but I've found it works best with a base coat or polish to 'grip' to.


9. Once the image is on your nail, be careful not to touch it for a few minutes, since like all wet nail polish, it can easily smudge. After allowing the image to dry for a few minutes, carefully top with a protective top coat (my all-time favorite is Seche Vite -- this stuff far outperforms any top coat I've ever used, plus it dries within a minute).


10. Enjoy your beautiful nails!!

Special thanks to my fiance for taking many, many pictures of the Konad process (when what he really wanted to do was eat dinner!)
 
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