Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Patriotic Gel Art! and How to do it!

Hi Monkeys, this is a bit over due, sorry things have been super busy lately! My 4th of July mani was super fun and easy and got tons of compliments.
For those wondering how to stamp over gels (love this because it lasts longer!) here's the order:
Prep your nail as you would for gels (buff, clean with alcohol or acetone)
Base gel layer, cure
1-3 coats of color gel, cure after each coat
wipe tacky layer off with alcohol
Stamp as you would a regular mani (I used Konad white polish)
clean up your edges with acetone (be careful here not to flood your nail)
add top gel coat and cure
wipe off tacky layer
And you're good to go!

The white I used is Whipped Cream by IBD and it is by far the best gel white I have found, two coats for that and 3 for the shimmery blue. Loved this mani, reminded me of distressed jeans and Bruce Springteen! Total American!

Monday, July 13, 2015

OPI: Nail Envy

INTRODUCING NAIL ENVY
“STRENGTH IN COLOR”

IDEA: Strengthening treatment plus coveted color in one
 
WHAT IT IS: The fortifying power of OPI’s Original Nail Envy Nail Strengthener is now combined with softly tinted color in four gorgeous OPI shades. The trusted formula you love—from the world’s number one salon brand, OPI—has added delicate, subtle color for the very first time. Infused with hydrolyzed wheat protein and calcium, the new Nail Envy “Strength in Color” delivers maximum strengthening aid to transform weak, brittle, damaged nails into stronger, longer, harder nails shining with bold, true-to-bottle color.
 
Inspired by of-the-moment creamsicle hued and pink quartz spring runway looks, this first-of-its-kind collection includes classic OPI favorite shades like Hawaiian Orchid, Samoan Sand, and Bubble Bath, plus a Nail Envy-only exclusive offeringPink to Envy. Simply apply this innovative two-in-one nail strengthener plus color lacquer directly onto nails to add some much needed muscle to your manicure.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Cupcake Polish: As Good As Rose Gold

Hey Monkeys! You may have noticed the fingers in some of the recent posts have changed... I've recruited my bestie to start blogging for Manicured Monkey so you shall see her more often :) Thanks M!

This is my kind of neutral, inside its a demure pink with large gold flakes. Outside though, it becomes an amazing scattered holo micro glitter party! A little on the thick side, formula wise, it applied and dried easily. (2 coats over Debroah Lippmann all about that base and topped with Addicted to speed.) The best part, it wore for a week without tip wear or chipping!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Zoya: Paradise Sun Collection- summer 2015 swatches

The new summer Zoya collection is out and available HERE now! All swatches are over Zoya anchor and topped with Zoya Armor.
Onto individual swatches!
I love a good white, and this is a good white with a little some thing extra. (Shimmer!) The formula is thicker, but not unmanageable. The flash makes it look super streaky, but in regular light its not. I had to do three thin coats, but it's so clean and bright. 
Bright shimmery fuchsia! With a squishy jelly texture this was a smooth applying two coat perfect formula. 
 I don't usually reach for red with the summer sun comes out, but this is a sparkly summer red, no doubt. It's got a similar jelly texture to Mae, but richer pigmentation without drowning out the silver shimmer. Two coats equal perfection.
Blurple, leaning more towards blue. This was a pleasant surprise, I was expecting the basic purply blue, but... it's ammmaaazzziinggg. It's more blue on the nail, more sparkly on the nail, and currently my pedicure. Perfect formula, two coats and I'm in blue heaven.
Lovely ocean blue, it's like looking at the sea on vacation. Calming and beautiful. Two coats, excellent formula! 
Hands down my favorite. I took so many pictures trying to capture the terrific teal everything of this shade. It's flattering, it's bright, it's summer in a bottle for me. And the formula, two coats of perfect perfection. 

Nicole by OPI: Coca Cola 2015 Swatches

Hi Monkeys, some NOPI swatches for you today!

Silvery, shimmery, sparkly. with sparks of red. It is on the thinner side of the formula, and took a third coat for opaque coverage, but so worth it.
Hands down my favorite of the collection! (three thin coats over matte  & OPI top coat).
This is one of those tricky in the bottle colors that hint and greatness, but really shine when it's on the nail. It's a got a deep shimmer that is just amazing and a formula to match. Two easy coats over matte nail envy and Opi top coat. The inset is using a flash, check out how much it changes!
 
Ah, a shiny, glowy red. What's not to like, it's a classic! Two easy coats, only a hint of wanting to streak, but didn't.  And, because I was feeling festive... isn't this going to be perfect come December topped with Seriously Citrus? (Matte NE base and OPI Top Coat)

Ah, my favorite shade of orange! Tangy, bright, but not neon. However, this was a little finicky to apply. It wanted to be streak, it was a little thin, but in the end it was worth the extra work. This was three thin coats, and it smoothed nicely with a layer or top coat. 
A perfect juicy grape purple. It's a super smooth formula, and was rich and opaque after two coats. 
I wasn't sure about the Seriously Citrus glitter topper, but it was amazing over In Grape Demand. Great density, without being too much, I didn't have to dab and dot it laid down perfectly in one coat.

*press samples

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

OPI: Infinite Shine swatches

There are some new OPI Infinite Shine polishes out recently and here's some swatches for you!


I love the name of this shade, Never Give Up, and the color too! A shade or two darker than Set in Stone, it's a dark brown, slight purple undertone. I didn't realize how similar the two shades were until I did a coffee tone inspired dotticure with Pretty Pink perseveres on the outside.
Another winning creamy formula that applied smoothly. 
(Two coats, IS system!) 
I do love me a rich cream brown. This has a hint of purple undertone that gives it dusty universally flattering shade. This wasn't too thick or thin, and practically applied itself! 
(I'm happy that the infinite shines wear so well on me, because I didn't want to take this off!) 
(Two coats, IS system...) :) 
This infinite shine shade of pink is the pale pretty petal I reach for. Soft, creamy, and not streaky. A little on the thin side for the typical IS formula, I needed a thinner first coat followed with a slightly heavier hand on the second. But, it dries quickly and stays shiny. (Two coats, and with the other swatches, I'm a rule follower and used the system!) 
This is one of those neutrals I want to love, but ends up giving me the heebie jeebies on my skin tone. It's a nice beige cream, with a bit of yellow undertones. I had no problems with the formula, it was a little thicker than their regular lacquer, but applied smoothly. Two coats gave me the coverage you see.
Does this system work over a different non Infinite shine base and top coat? I don't know, I'm a rule follower! (Shown over the IS base and a coat of IS top coat.) 

*press sample

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

OPI: Nail Envy- press release


INTRODUCING NAIL ENVY
“STRENGTH IN COLOR”

IDEA: Strengthening treatment plus coveted color in one
WHAT IT IS: The fortifying power of OPI’s Original Nail Envy Nail Strengthener is now combined with softly tinted color in four gorgeous OPI shades. The trusted formula you love—from the world’s number one salon brand, OPI—has added delicate, subtle color for the very first time. Infused with hydrolyzed wheat protein and calcium, the new Nail Envy “Strength in Color” delivers maximum strengthening aid to transform weak, brittle, damaged nails into stronger, longer, harder nails shining with bold, true-to-bottle color.
 
Inspired by of-the-moment creamsicle hued and pink quartz spring runway looks, this first-of-its-kind collection includes classic OPI favorite shades like Hawaiian Orchid, Samoan Sand, and Bubble Bath, plus a Nail Envy-only exclusive offeringPink to Envy. Simply apply this innovative two-in-one nail strengthener plus color lacquer directly onto nails to add some much needed muscle to your manicure.