Very Denniee Nails :): May 2012

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Organization Project: DIY Nail Polish Rack

Holy schnaps this project frustrated the crap out of me.  So much hard work (and a little more cash than anticipated), and it still isn't quite right.  Oh well, at least it turned out functional.  And it looks nice from far away too :)

Read about how I made this, after the jump! :D

Nail Art Mini Spam

So this weekend, a friend hosted a potluck, since it was a long weekend.  She also wanted me to bring my nail polish to paint her meticulously grown nails (they take forever to grow to non-stubbins status it seems).  What started off as a normal DRD-nomming event turned into a full-out girls' night (guys included)!
Please note that these pics not that great (they were taken on my phone camera in low light)

My manis:

 Skittles mani, because I couldn't decide what color to use...

And then add polka dots!  Because I can't leave it alone.  I need to work with my dotting tool more often.

And next is the masterpiece!  Sadly, I didn't create this, but actually a totally unexpected source: Bruce.  He knows nothing about nail polishes and gives us this?! Awesome.  And then this one manicure inspired some more Pokemon manicures, which I sadly did not get pictures of.

Do you see the Pikachu? :D

64. China Glaze - Fast Track

Hey guys!  Here's the start of me catching up with all my posts!  I've been busy with working, working out,  and studying, but my nails have not been neglected!  (It's just that editing pictures and writing posts takes time)  Fast track is a warm-toned nude with gold shimmer.  The gold shimmer also occasionally flashes green and orange.  Gorgeous!  While I was wearing this, I could not stop admiring my nails xD  This polish is actually very similar to Essence Irreplaceable, but Fast Track is a lot more tan-colored, and Irreplaceable is more sand-colored.  I'll do a comparison sometime in the future to show you guys :)Cool-toned nude with gold shimmer that flashes green and orange.  comparable to essence irreplaceable.

Formula was a little watery and sheer, but with this polish, it's not all too noticeable.  The watery formula was very easy to control.  This is 2 coats, no topcoat.

Tropical Triangles

Hi everyone!  Here's some nail art for you!  I've been really busy, and I know it's almost been a week since I've last posted, but life waits for no one (I've been really busy).  Don't worry, I have lots of posts queued up for you guys :)  (Lots of fun nail art, nail projects, and swatches for everyone!)

Today's mani was inspired by Sophie at MyAwesomeBeauty.  You should go check her out, she's got some beautiful stuff there!

Excuse the dents!  Happened to hit the tips against a wall while I was getting a lamp into place.

How I did this mani was:
1. Paint the base color
2. Place striping tape in a diagonal manner (I placed it where you can see the gold peeking through)
3. Paint the bottom color (blue), trying to be careful to stay inside the bottom part
4. Paint the middle (green), again, careful to stay inside that part
5. Paint the top region (dusty lighter blue).
6. Remove tape

The reason I painted in this order was so I could possibly cover up any bits I painted out of place with the next color (it's easier to go from bottom to top).  Not the most sophisticated manner, but it works!  There are a few spots where the polish isn't quite opaque, but what can I do?  I didn't want to do multiple coats on top.  

And now here's a rarity: a shot of my right hand!  Same color scheme, but my right hand nails are little nubbins right now.  I keep almost breaking them, so I just decided to cut them.  And the previous design probably wouldn't work with such little nail space, so I decided to do something different, but still similar.  So here's a simple tape mani, using the same colors as the left hand.  I'm not used to taking pics of the opposite hand, so excuse the sub-par posing :3

I rather like this color combination, don't you?  It's a little bit brighter than Sophie's original manicure, but I think it's fitting for the season :)  The colors remind me of tropical seas and the beach (meanwhile, I've still got 2 more weeks of school...).

Colors Used:
Gold: American Apparel Gold Flash
Turquoise: Zoya Wednesday
Teal: China Glaze Shower Together
Green: OPI Green-wich Village

Stay tuned for more posts coming soon!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

63. American Apparel - L'espirit

At first, I was a tiny bit afraid that L'espirit would be too pale for my tanned skin (I usually get really tanned during the spring/summer because of DB).  However, on the nail, L'espirit is brighter than I expected and I really like it!  It's a clean looking pastel lavender cream...I would guess it's a hair darker than China Glaze's Light as Air, and a it's quite a bit lighter than my OPI Done Out in Deco.  I haven't done a real comparison, so don't hold me to that guess!  I actually don't even have Light as Air; it's one of those polishes that would make me look waaaaay too dark.

The formula of L'espirit was wonderful; perfectly easy to control, and full coverage in one coat!  I'm really liking the formula of these American Apparel polishes :)

On another note, I've been working on my swatchicle sticks and my nail polish, so maybe i'll have a picture of one of those up soon!

Friday, May 25, 2012

Hand Art: Creeping Vines

So this is what happens when it's 2 in the morning and you have excess acrylic paint sitting around...  The blue featured in this post is American Apparel The Valley.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

62. American Apparel - The Valley

The Valley is one of those colors that comes really close to Tiffany's blue.  However, I've never seen Tiffany blue in real life, so I have no idea how close it actually comes.  This color is perfect for spring!  It's bright and clean, and it's pastel without giving me weird hands.  I think it gives me a tiny bit of lobster hands, but nothing unbearable.

The formula on this was a bit strange.  It was thick, but runny at the same time.  However, the formula was fairly easy to control, and if I was a bit more careful, this could probably be opaque in one coat.  On my left hand, I required very little clean up (right hand is always a different story -___-).  This is 2 coats here, with topcoat.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

59, 60, 61. - Glitter Spam!

I'm too lazy to make multiple posts for polishes that I'm (unfortunately) going to purge, so here's a bit of spam.  All of these polishes are very sparsely distributed glitters, and that just doesn't sit very well with me.  These are all too sparse to be used as a layering polish or on its own.  All of these swatches are three coats each; please excuse the yellow nails :X

First up is Wet N' Wild's Party of Five Glitters.  I guess it's supposed to be a dupe of Deborah Lippmann's Happy Birthday, but the WNW can't even compare.  It's very sparsely distributed, and the glitter tends to settle at the bottom of the bottle.  No bueno.  It takes a lot of dabbing to place the glitters, and the formula's a bit runny.  There are larger silver, purple, and light blue hex glitters, and smaller green and red hex glitter in a cloudy, colorless base.

See the settling?! :C

Next is NYC's Starry Silver Glitter.  This one actually has pretty decent coverage, I just can't think of any time where I would want this many coats as a layering polish or this sparse of a glitter on its own.  There are small silver holo glitters, with some larger lavender and blue hex glitters suspended in a clear base.   This polish also settles a bit, but not nearly as bad as Party of Five Glitters.

Holo glitters!

Lastly, I have Confetti's Tinsel, silver holo glitter in a cloudy, colorless base.  In the bottle, it looks like it would be a shiny disco ball of a party, but on the nails, it disappoints.  This is disappointingly sparse, and I have so many better silver holo glitters.  So into the swap bin it goes.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

58. Zoya - Yara

I wore Yara for DRD's banquet on Sunday!  I wore this, since I wanted something gold and green to go with my black dress (plus, the bf was wearing a green shirt, almost like the base color of this polish).  The banquet was really fun, the first formal event DRD's had in a long time!

Okay, back to the polish.  The base color of Yara is a dusty olive green.  There are gold and green glitters dispersed throughout the polish, almost looking like a glass fleck polish.  But these aren't glass flecks, and the glitter is not fine enough to be a shimmer.  I really like this polish!  It's muted, but not boring, and the gold brings a little something different to the table.  All the warm undertones are really flattering on my yellow skin :)

Zoya's formula is usually superb, and this one doesn't disappoint either.  Two beautifully smooth, opaque coats shown in this picture.  More pics after the jump!  I liked this polish way too much to choose only 2 pics!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

57. Zoya - Kotori

Kotori is a sultry smoking polish!  She's so gorgeous (I feel weird referring to a polish as a woman, but hey, all these polishes have female names).  Kotori is a mostly blue shimmer in a smoky grey (jelly?) base.  I say mostly because at certain angles you can see some random green shimmer, as well as a darker blue shimmer.  The green, sadly, doesn't show up in the pictures.  There's so much depth to this!  It's not quite a duochrome, but there's something special going on here.  I got this during the Earth day promo and I think I've found my new favorite!  It kind of reminds me of brand new, dark-wash jeans :)

Look at that duochrome-y goodness!  I actually think that the duochrome is caused by the sheer grey base, because in real life the duochrome is not that apparent.  So I don't think it's a legit duochrome.

Application was a breeze, with average drying time.  Formula's a bit thin, but that's perfect for a slightly sheer polish like this one. This is 3 coats in the pictures, but I've actually worn it with 2 coats, and it's perfectly fine that way as well.  Three coats would be best if you want intense color, two is fine if you just want a little something on your tips.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Another Major Haul! Zoya Edition

So Zoya had half off polishes for their Earth Day event, so I went and snatched up 22 (that's right, 22!) polishes.  I just had to have some of the polishes from the Surf&Beach collections, and there are a bunch of oldies that I can't find at my usual store, so I went crazy :D  Very heavy picture post coming up, read more after the jump!

Classy Chevrons

I did these nails over my last mani Tira-Mi-Su.  It looks quite good, considering that the arrows are all freehanded (no nail art brushes or tape).  I tried to do this mani with tape, but I lack the patience for it.  The first time, I managed to pull out chunks of my base color (gross...and sad).  After failing with the tape, I gave up and freehanded this stuff.  I got lots of compliments on this mani!

Nude: Diamond - Tira-Mi-Su
Black: American Apparel - Hassid
Gold: China Glaze - Passion

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

56. Diamond - Tira-Mi-Su

In the bottle, Tira-Mi-Su looks like a very tan-colored nude.  However, on my nails, it seems to be a chameleon!  In most natural lights, it's very pink toned, looking very awkward on my skin.  However, in most indoor lighting, this color can almost pass for my actual skin tone, giving me mannequin hands!  I don't think this color is an actual match though, so I'll probably be purging this one from my collection.  I need something a little more yellow-toned.

Formula was slightly thick, and just the tiniest bit difficult to apply.  However, it doesn't really self-level, so topcoat is needed to really make this pretty.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

55. Zoya - Zuza

Zuza is a lovely turquoise metallic foil with some lovely warm/golden undertones.  It kind of reminds me of the clear water at Quarry Lakes at the Fremont sprints race (shoutout to my fellow DB'ers here!).  The water's so beautiful and clear there; you can actually see your hand if you put in in the water (unlike nasty Lake Merced...ew).

Application was a little bit on the difficult side.  Formula's thicker than Myrta, which made it much harder to control.  Because of the thickness, I was getting some bald spots.  Despite all that, here are 2 beautiful coats, and topcoat, which fixes everything :D

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

54. Zoya - Myrta

This beauty here is Zoya Myrta!  This is a very red-orangey coral, much like the pantone color of the year.  I actually wish it was a little shinier, but it's nice and bright without being too blingy.  I'm actually on the fence about whether or not I like this polish on me.  Strangely, I think I might like it if there was a little more pink in this color.

Application was beautiful.  No streaks or bald patches, and the formula flowed smoothly.  Very pigmented; here is 2 coats with topcoat.

53. Sally Hansen Complete - Navy Baby!

This is Navy Baby, and it's going in the swap bin.  I don't know, the color's not exactly vibrant or unique, and the formula and brush are too difficult to work with.  I'm left feeling kinda meh.

The formula was thick and pigmented, and yet, it seemed to get everywhere.  This is 2 coats, no topcoat.  I HATE THE BRUSH btw.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

DRD Manicure

Last weekend was the first dragonboat race of the season, and to commemorate the occasion and show my team spirit, I created these nails :D  I wish I could have gotten the letters a bit cleaner, but I worked with the tools at my disposal, toothpick and bobby pin (and I was in a rush).

To create this look:

base: Sally Hansen Complete Salon - Navy Baby
design: Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear - White On!

tools: toothpicks & bobby pins

52. Essie - Baubing for Baubles

This was my mani of the day a couple days back!  I really like this color, but had to take it off because I wanted to do a special mani for my dragonboat race on Saturday!  Baubing for Baubles is not quite a navy blue.  It is quite a bit dustier than that, and a little bit darker than my AA hoodie in Sea Blue.  I have a lot of AA hoodies...someday I want to have the rainbow!

Application was pretty good on this one!  I would say this is one and a half coats.  It's actually a slightly thicker coat, with a few bald spots that I patched up accordingly.  I'd say if you were more careful than I was, you'd definitely be able to get away with one coat.  Man, when Essie does bold colors, they do it right!

Saturday, May 5, 2012

51. OPI - Ogre-the-top Blue

This here is Ogre-the-top Blue, from OPI's Shrek collection.  OttB is a very saturated sky blue.  It's quite a bold color, but very bright!  I was definitely going for a springtime look when I put this on.

Application and formula weren't bad.  2 coats here, with a tiny bit of streaking on my right thumb...(but then again, I suck at applying with my left hand).  Formula's a bit on the thin side, but not too bad :)

Friday, May 4, 2012

50. China Glaze - Rainstorm

Rainstorm is a pretty, cornflower-blue polish with cooler blue shimmer and small, sparsely distributed blue glitter.  It's a very delicate looking color, kind of like raindrops sliding down a window.  *sigh*  Usually I don't like VNL, but I'm willing to tolerate it for this polish; the sheerness seems to suit it.

What I don't like though, is the wear time.  Bleh!  Only half a day, and there is noticeable tip wear!  Application was good though, very easy to apply.  Slightly watery, but that's definitely good for a sheer polish like this.

49. China Glaze - Snow

Here is Snow, an often-used white among other nail bloggers.  I was hoping it would be more opaque, and useful for nail art, stamping, etc.  However, at 3 coats for opacity, I don't think it's happening.

Formula was a little watery and hard to control...I kept flooding my poor cuticles.  And because of its sheerness and the ridges on my nails, I didn't even get complete opacity at 3 coats.  I am disappointed :C

48. Essie - Shine of the Times

Essie Shine of the Times is one of the Luxeffect polishes that came out last holiday season.  There was such a big rush to grab these too!  I have no idea if they are LE, but I got a back-up bottle anyways, just because I love this polish so much!  Over a dark color (here, Zoya Valerie), more of the red/orange/green multichrome shows up on the nails.

 This combination actually reminds me a lot of OPI's Merry Midnight, but with a green flash.  I guess I don't really have to lust after it anymore :)

However, over a lighter polish (here, China Glaze Snow), there is more of a purple/blue/pink effect, with just a tiny flash of yellow.  I couldn't get these colors to show in my pictures, but the effect is nice and delicate in real life.  It reminds me of fairies :)

The flaky coverage on these is very dense, but using a thinner coat can make the coverage a bit thinner, if that's the look you want.  The formula on this is on the thick side, but I suspect that is to suspend the flakie particles better (so they don't sink to the bottom).  Despite the thick formula, there was absolutely no problem with application, so there is no need to be afraid! :D

Obviously, with such a gorgeous polish, I couldn't choose just 2 pictures, so there is (A LOT) more pictures after the cut! :D

Thursday, May 3, 2012

47. Zoya - Valerie

This is Valerie, isn't she a beaut?  Valerie is a dark purple foil, and in the bottle you can see some yellow at the edges.  I was hoping this would be a duochrome, but sadly, it isn't.  The yellow just doesn't translate to the edges.  It's still gorgeous though!  Most purple foils I see are too light, and pink toned, but this is vampy deliciousness!

Shown is 2 easy coats.  Valerie has that good formula that I love so much from Zoya, it was just the right consistency, easy to control, nicely pigmented.  You could even get away with 1 coat for this polish, but it's my habit to do 2, and I think it looks better with 2 anyways.

46. Zoya - Jancyn

Jancyn is a beautiful orange cream.  It's nice because it's not too in your face; it's a little more muted than that.  It's not orange like a traffic cone, it's more like a cantaloupe, but a little more saturated.  I think it looks pretty nice with my skin, and it's such a happy color for spring!

Application was iffy.  This is three coats of Jancyn, and it could use a fourth; it's still a little bit uneven.  I was surprised at the amount of coats needed for this manicure, since Zoya creams are usually opaque in 2 coats, three if you want more pigmentation.

Just at first glance, Jancyn and Arizona (from Zoya's Beach collection) look very similar; I had to do a double-take when I first got my bottle of Arizona from the Zoya Earth day promo.  However, upon closer inspection, Arizona is the slightest bit dustier (colored).  I will do a comparison later