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Cheeky Plates and an Elegant Manicure

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I love getting new nail art supplies! A while back, there was a bunch of hubbub (hubbub hubbub) on the interwebs about these new Cheeky stamping plates. I tried to order them, but when I picked up the envelope in my mailbox it had been sliced right open and the contents stolen! Anyways, long story short, I finally got them this weekend! I had to try out as many as possible and wore this kooky skittles for one night (to my engagement party!):

I used Mliani one coat glitter for the diagonal line – and it was really thick and goopy, I didn’t like it at all! You can tell how thick it is in the picture (and my hands look so dry! Time to moisturize). Anyways, this manicure was fun and funky but I wasn’t really loving it, so I tried again – and this time, I came up with something really classy!

So pretty, right?? This is Essie Topless & Barefoot stamped with Konad special black polish, and I used Cheeky plate CH6. I’ve noticed that I usually do an accent finger (because why would I pass up an opportunity for sparkles?!), but I think that sometimes it can be really nice to have a more uniform look. I’m going to be working a conference over the weekend, and this is the sort of thing that is unique but a little bit more toned down and professional. I also really love the look of this nude and black together – it’s not as graphic as black and white, but it’s still quite striking.

I’m so excited to show you manicures using my new Cheeky plates!

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Spring Flowers

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I have entered a nail art contest! I know! Very exciting. Bundle Monster is hosting a nail art contest, and since I use their plates so often I thought it would be fun to enter! Plus, I’ve been messing around with my photo apps on my phone, and I think I found a fun new way to take pictures of my nail art. Fun! This manicure is flowers for the spring. On my way home from work, I walk down one particular street with spectacular gardens. I think there’s a stretch of 5 or 6 houses in a row with beautiful little gardens, all in bloom with spring bulbs! I love how bright and cheerful they are!

I’ve left this manicure on for 4 or 5 days now, so you can definitely see some tip-wear on my middle finger. I’m impressed with how long this lasted, and I’m really loving stamping on top of a layered look. This OPI polish is really great – little and big pieces of holographic glitter. I love it!

Are you doing anything to brighten up your look for the spring sunshine?

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Bright Sparklies

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I haven’t posted in a little while. But I’m in a happy mood and the weather is beautiful, so I went with a a bright color and some sparkles. And then I stamped on it! Yay! I haven’t posted in a while because I was away on vacation for a week, and then the next 2 weeks after that were pretty busy (oh, you know, I have this other hobby now… planning a wedding!).

Really not a great shot of the manicure, but… I wanted to do a full hand shot that shows MY ENGAGEMENT RING! It’s a little blurry, but you get the picture. I love my ring! And now it’s really fun to come up with manicures that compliment. Anyways, onto the nails πŸ™‚

I really love this manicure. It’s so bright and cheerful! And it sparkles, too – what could be better! This is Jesse’s Girl in Wild Thing (never heard of this brand but I loved the color… kind of a magenta purple Β – photographs more purple, but you can see in the bottle that it’s really bright), with a coat of Revlon Sparkling (big and small pink glitter). Then I stamped Bundle Monster BM 208 using black special Konad polish. Here are some close ups:

Amazing, right? What do you think? I just love how bright and sparkly this is – so fun for a warm spring day!

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Peacock Nails

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Let me start by saying that I really like this manicure. A lot. For one thing, it has sparkles. For another thing, it’s that blue-green color I like. For another another thing, it’s a stamp. That all adds up to pretty in my book!

 

It was kind of hard to clean up the sparkles – this guy is a little messy (I know, I just referred to my own hand as “guy.” Weird, right?). It was a little hard to capture the colors in my photos – I think the closeups are closer to real life:

Now that’s what I’m talking about. Pretty, right? I used 2 coats of Nails Inc Warwick Way for the base, and then on some nails I put Milani 3DHi-Tech and on others I put Milani 3D Cyberspace. Then I stamped on top with Bundle Monster plate BM 212 with a dark blue special Konad polish. What do you think?

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We Stamp On Sundays: Large Flowers

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This week’s challenge over atΒ Adventures in StampingΒ was large flowers. I love these challenges because it provides me with an excuse to try out images I haven’t used before! I went for a full nail design for this challenge – I like those the best! I hope this counts as a large enough flower πŸ™‚

The color dragged a little bit when I put on my topcoat – but it doesn’t seem as noticeable in real life, somehow. So, I recently upgraded my OS on my computer, and now photos I take with my iphone show up immediately on my computer – so cool! Yay technology. I take all my finger pictures with my iphone. It has a good camera, and I actually bought a lens attachment, too. I know, fancy.

And here’s proof that my stamp is a large flower! Haha.

For this manicure, I used Essie Topless and Barefoot, and stamped image BM 225 with Konad special polish.

 

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Matte Herringbone Skittles

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I saw a picture of a herringbone pattern manicure, and thought it would be a good test of my brush skills. I have to say – I’m quite pleased with myself! You can definitely tell where I messed up a little bit. Overall, this look is pretty darn classy. I ruined it soon after I took this picture, though – well, ruin is a strong word. I severely smudged it – because I matte-ified it, it seemed dry! Alas, it was not. Anyways.

Awesome, right? I went with a bunch of colors:

  • Essie Neo Whimsical
  • Essie Chinchilly
  • Essie Lapis of Luxury
  • Essie Sweet Talker
  • Essie Angora Cardi

Then I painted the Herringbone pattern with China Glaze First Mate and topped the whole thing off with a coat of Matte About You. I think it would be cool to try this with a nail art pen – might have more control. I think that my right hand didn’t turn out too bad! It’s hard to be detailed using my non-dominant hand to paint!

Not so bad for painting with my left hand! You can tell where I had some trouble with my middle finger and tried to fix it. All in all – I like this!

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Magnetic Nail Polish

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This is so cool! I had my doubts because, you know, it’s a funky trend – but after seeing this stuff all over the internets, I knew I had to give it a try. I bought a bottle of Nails Inc magnetic polish at Sephora in New York when I was visiting my sister, and then I sort of forgot about it (well, I had a lot of goodies to try out!). Anyways, I finally got to try this, and I have to say that it is seriously cool. It’s a really low effort – high awesome kind of manicure (weird scale, I know). It is expensive – the most I’ve spend on a single bottle of polish yet ($15 or $16. Yikes). I really like how this came out!

So here’s how it works. I applied a coat of this polish to each fingernail. Then I went back and did the next step one at a time – apply a second, thick coat of polish, and hold the magnet over my nail for about 3 – 5 seconds. The polish comes with a magnet on the cap. It took a couple of tries to figure it out – the sales lady in the store told me to rock the magnet back and forth, but that was wrong, it totally distorts the effect in a weird way. Different polishes come with different magnets that create a variety of designs. This one is supposed to be a chevron – which you can see in the more successful nails. On other nails it sort of looks stripy. But it’s not really supposed to be uniform, so I thought that was ok. Also, I accidently touched the magnet to the wet polish a few times.

See? Some nails turned out better than others. In any case, I really like this and will definitely do it again! Now… I just need some more colors…

 

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Blue Freehand

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Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of this manicure until after it had already chipped. Oops. Anyways, I decided to practice my freehanding skills! I used a small nail art brush and sort of just went to town making different line based patterns. It’s kind of zebra-y – I think it came out well! I want to try a basket weave design, too. This is Essie Topless and Barefoot for the base coat, and I used China Glaze Shower Together and a little bit of Finger Paints Laugh My Art Off for some accent.

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Swirlies

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I do a lot of full nail designs, so I thought it would be fun to try some smaller designs. The smaller images are actually kind of tricky, because you have to be more precise in your stamping – the angle matters a lot more. I tried to be precise and consistent so that I would have a matching manicure! I also do a lot of accent nails, so I tried to make it a little more uniform this time. Though… I did use some rhinestones!

This is Essie Angora Cardi – which looks a little redder in this picture than it does in real life! – and Konad special white polish. I used SH24 to stamp.

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New Colors and Stamping Sunday

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I haven’t posted in a while – things have been so busy, I haven’t really had much time! Don’t get me wrong, I’ve still been doing my nails! I’ve recently discovered how pretty a simple manicure can be. I visited my lovely sister in New York, and picked up a TON of polishes there (thanks, D!), and have been experimenting with colors and glitters. I did this one when I was in NY:

This is Nails Inc Warwick Way (which actually reads a lot greener in real life than in this picture) and Connaught Square. It’s a pretty simple manicure, but I just really liked this color combination. Warwick Way is so saturated – it’s really one of my favorite colors. The finish was really nice, too.Β Here’s a close up of the glitter (I seriously love this):

I also did a manicure for this week’s Sunday stamping challenge, which was to use a plate ending in 3. I used three new Essie polishes that I got in NY (Splash of Grenadine, Neo Whimsical, and Play Date) and stamped Bundle Monster BM 203 using a special konad polish.

I’m sort of meh about this manicure, to be honest. Plus, my cuticles are a mess (damn you, winter!), and the tips of my nails have chipped off already. Oh well!

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