Saturday 30 April 2016

Essie Flower Crowns

Hey everyone! Just a quick post as these are my follow up nails to my Nails on Holiday: Edinburgh Weekend post. I didn't want to include the full design in the post as it was already long enough. I was recently sent the Essie Spring 2016 collection*, and it's just the perfect collection for florals, so I couldn't help but create some with them all. The only polish I didn't use from the collection was Lounge Lover because I already had a red and I thought the pink would clash. I really liked how these turned out, and they reminded me a lot of flower crowns, so I decided to stick with that idea and name them as such.

Nails On Holiday: Edinburgh Weekend Away

Hey everyone! Can you believe it's already the end of April? I know it's such a typical thing to say but this month really has flown by. I'm trying to have a nice relaxing bank holiday weekend this week because last weekend was so full of activities in Edinburgh that I'm still slightly knackered. Me and my boyfriend went for an extended weekend (Saturday-Monday) as a late birthday present to me. It was really nice to get away for a bit, especially as we've been really stressed over moving. As I mentioned before I went, I decided to do another Nails on Holiday post while I was away. For those of you who are unaware, this is basically just where I document my holiday by putting my nails in front of things, you can see my previous two trips here. Previously I've not taken that many photos, the first time in Italy because my camera wouldn't focus, and last year in Cyprus because I kept forgetting. This time around I seem to have done the complete opposite and taken tonnes, so I apologise for the picture-heavy post. Because there are so many pictures of the holiday I'm going to include a full picture of the nails in a separate post tomorrow so I can say more about them. 

Tuesday 26 April 2016

Flamingo Nail Art Tutorial for Divine Caroline

Hey everyone! I hope you all had a lovely weekend, I got back from Edinburgh late last night after walking miles and miles all weekend so I'm exhausted, but I had a really great time. I'll be showing you my 'nails on holiday' in my usual format soon once I've decided which photos to use because I ended up taking loads! 

Today I have a brand new tutorial over on Divine Caroline for you, showing you how to create these cute floral flamingo nails. I was originally inspired by this nail art by Tipped Off Nails, but I wanted to show you how to create something similar at home. I was searching for some floral flamingo inspiration when I stumbled across her manicure and knew I had to create it. If you want to learn how to create these you can see the full tutorial here

What do you think? Let me know in the comments! And don't forget to check out the tutorial.

Friday 22 April 2016

Gelish - Last Call Nail Art + Review

Hey everyone! It's Friday, I definitely have that Friday feeling because I'm going away for a long weekend to Edinburgh tomorrow morning with my boyfriend. It's my birthday present, although it's long since been my birthday (it's in January) because we had to postpone, but I'm really excited. I'm going to be doing a 'nails on holiday' post again (check out my previous posts here and here) because I really love doing them and they're fun to look back on. 

Anyway, today's post is one that I've been gathering photos for a few weeks for because I truly wanted to show how gorgeous this polish is. I've wanted to get my hands on a rose gold polish for ages and when I noticed that the recent Gelish - After Hours collection contained one with Last Call*, I couldn't help but want/need it. After Gelish kindly sent it to me, I've used it a considerable amount, mainly on my friends because everyone wants this shade, but also on myself. My friends didn't even want nail art (how boring) because it's perfect by itself. 

I must admit, I was worried I'd be disappointed when it got here and it wouldn't be like the pictures,and it would be rose gold enough (does that make sense?). But it's the perfect rose gold, and because it's a gel it lasts forever (or thereabouts) so you can stare at it endlessly. I've created some nail art with it, which was completely influenced by Nancy Loves Nails. I've also done some nail art on my friend, and a review of the polish itself. Read on after the jump for the full post. 

Thursday 21 April 2016

A England - Whispering Waves and Sparks Divine Duo Review + Swatches

Hey everyone! Today I have the last couple of A-England polishes I mentioned in my last review to show you. I've got tonnes of great stuff to show you at the moment, both nail art and reviews, that it's hard to find the time to put it all out there and as a result I just panic and it gets delayed even more. I always have a tendency to get less done when I have more to do, does that make sense to anyone else? Anyway, these two gorgeous polishes are the latest additions to A-England's Heavenly Quotes collection. You will have seen Sparks Divine in my last post, and so I'm sure you've already seen what a stunning shade it is. As these, and the previous polishes I showed you, are my first A-England polishes, I don't own any of the other polishes in this collection so I cannot attest for their quality. However, these are definitely worth picking up, and if these are anything to go by I'm sure the rest of the collection are great too! Read on after the jump for my full review. As with my last A-England posts, I've done 'inside' shots with my lightbox as the full five-finger shots, and natural daylight shots for the other pictures to show the differences. 

Tuesday 19 April 2016

A-England Stamping

Hey everyone! Although I've got tonnes of reviews to show you at the moment, I'm really missing posting nail art, so I thought I'd take a break from the reviews for tonight and post a design instead. I've been experimenting with stamping a lot recently, it's always been one of those things that I really couldn't master, and whilst I still wouldn't class myself as 'good' at stamping, I'm definitely starting to see improvements. I still make mistakes, and I'm sure I will for a long time, but it's great to see where I've been going wrong and try to improve on that. Whilst swatching some A-England polishes recently I decided to try stamping with them, and I think the final look really suits the 'rustic'/historic theme of A-England polishes. 

Sunday 17 April 2016

Barry M - Coconut Infusion Full Collection review + swatches

Hey everyone! Today I have the brand new Barry M - Coconut Infusion Collection* to show you. These have just been released, and contain a completely new formula to regular Barry M nail polish. As described by Barry M their 'unique blend of coconut water and coconut oil gently hydrates and nourishes nails while delivering a beautifully smooth, gel-like glossy manicure'. How many times have we heard these claims? I certainly thought these would just be another 'fad' nail polish. I really couldn't have been more wrong. I'm not exaggerating when I say these are the best formula of nail polish I've ever experienced. Barry M have completely outdone themselves, baring in mind that their gelly polishes were already some of my favourites, if not my favourite. The application of all of these polishes was silky smooth, two coats for every polish and they dry really fast. As in, faster than the speedy dry polishes. I would describe these as a combination of the gelly polishes and the speedy polishes with all the best qualities. I can't attest for the hydrating qualities, I'm not really sure how you'd test that, but they definitely deliver a 'smooth, gel-like glossy manicure'. 

One thing I did notice about the collection is that quite a few of the polishes are largely similar to other Barry M polishes, I imagine this was so that favourite colours could be reinvented with this new formula, but I wanted to compare and contrast them with their similar counterparts so you can see what to expect. So with each colour is an individual comparison of similar shades. As a warning this will be a super long post, but it's definitely worth the read as this collection should be top of your wishlist.

Thursday 14 April 2016

A England - To Emily Bronte Collection Swatches + Review

 Hey everyone! I feel so frustrated with myself, I had intended to post every day this week to catch up on reviews but I've come down with an infection and I just feel awful. It's also making me really emotional for some reason, like I've cried at my own nails at least twice, so I decided to have a few days break. I'm still not feeling great but I can't deal with the not-posting guilt so I wanted to post this gorgeous A-England collection.

A England is a brand that I've wanted to try for a very very long time, their polishes are always awe-inspiring and unique, and the collections always intrigue me. I was lucky enough to be approached by Adina to review for A-England recently, and I absolutely jumped at the chance. I was sent this collection, (the To Emily Bronte Collection*), and a duo that I'll be showing you in the next few days. All of the polishes are gorgeous, but I feel a special affinity to this collection because they're all inspired by Wuthering Heights which is such a brilliant book. I used to be such a bookworm before uni and work took over my life and Wuthering Heights was definitely one of my favourites. 

I felt a lot of pressure to get my review of these perfect, not just because I want to impress Adina and my readers, but also because I want to do these beautiful polishes justice. I decided to use my new camera for my 'other' shots and my usual lightbox camera for my five finger shots. Unfortunately I wasn't very happy with the five finger shots, I didn't think they did the polishes justice, but I don't have it in me to break tradition and not have five finger shots. And anyway, it gives a perception of what the polishes look like inside and outside, but it also definitely highlights how much I need to get a lightbox set up for my new camera because the quality is 100x better!

Sunday 10 April 2016

Barry M Spring/Summer 2016 Speedy Quick Dry Collection Review and Swatches

Hey everyone! Today I've got a long-overdue review of the Barry M - Speedy Quick Dry collection* for Spring/Summer 2016. I actually swatched these within the first few days of their release but with the move I just haven't had a chance to sit down and edit the pictures, so today I made sure to make some time to edit, and these were first on my list. Pastels are always my favourite, so this collection of four light pastel shades was always going to have my heart, and they've got the usual great formula of Barry M polishes to match. Read more after the jump to see my full thoughts

Thursday 7 April 2016

Then and Now: Flowers and Beads

Hey everyone. It's been a very long time since I did a 'then and now' type post, I actually did these nails and another design I'll show you next week just after christmas, but I wanted to post them on a Thursday as a kind of #ThrowbackThursday type post, but I kept realising on Fridays that I hadn't posted them. Turns out Thursdays kind of pass me by. So upon realising today was Thursday, I made sure I sat down and wrote this so that another Thursday doesn't come and go. My friend Very Emily has also recently been doing Throwback Thursday posts and I've absolutely loved seeing hers, so I hope you like mine too.

Today's 'Then and Now' post is based off these nails I did around 3 and a half years ago, which many people said at the time were Marc Jacobs-esque. These were actually really popular when I first posted them, so it will be interesting to see if there's a similar reception for these. It's also really interesting to see how my photography has changed, although admittedly the original nails were from when I started to get a hang of where I wanted my blog to go. So you can see 'my' pose starting to develop, and my nails are relatively short compared to some of my really early posts. I've also included a picture after the jump for those too lazy to click the link

I kind of prefer the original nails, weirdly enough, because I think I went a bit OTT with the studs on my latest version, but my photo quality is definitely an improvement, and my skin care is much better too. I found that despite having hundreds of blue polishes, I apparently don't possess a proper navy, so I had to use a very gloopy bottle of a W7 navy. Although this just gives me an excuse to buy more polish! 

Monday 4 April 2016

Evixi Gel Polish Review + Nail Art

Hey everyone! After doing the Paint All The Nails link up last week I was so inspired by the other ladies who all creating amazing stamping marbles (where you put polish onto the stamper and smush it onto your nail essentially) + stamping, that I couldn't resist giving it a go myself. I love saran wrap nails, but these are even easier to create, and much less messy. I'll definitely be trying them again. I love how with the colours I used here they look like a really beautiful set of clouds at sunset/sunrise.

Trying out this technique seemed to also be the perfect excuse to get cracking on my review of Evixi Gel Polish, I've been trying it out for a couple of months so I can give you a proper review, but this is the first nail art I've done with it on my fingers. I did some nail art on my toes, but this is definitely a fingers-only blog (so don't panic that I'm about the show you pictures of my feet). The design on my toes lasted for well over a month before I got sick of them growing out and took them off, but they were still going strong. I also did some nails on my friend Alice, which lasted her 3 weeks before she picked them off (tut tut), so I can definitely attest for them being long lasting. 

The bottles and lamp are also gorgeous, whilst the bottles are similar to Gelish in their shape, their design is unique and is what really enticed me to reviewing the polish. They look classy and expensive, whilst actually being cheaper than most gel polish, if not all, priced at just £7 for one bottle. You could get a full kit with multiple polishes for under £100 which is virtually unheard of for gels.  Just as a warning this post is quite image-heavy, but I wanted you to get a good idea of the kit and the polishes so bear with me! Full post after the jump.