April 28, 2010, 9:00:00 AM

Finish it up! 25 different nail polish finishes

Hands covered with purple glitter

Hi guys! How is everybody doing? I've been very busy lately (and that includes having a playdate with my mom, Natasja, Michelle from TheLacquerFiles and Daphne from Nailswatches. It was so much fun, I've never seen so many polishes at once, they even danced around in my head while I was trying to sleep!).

Anyway! since I've lost a lot of swatches thanks to my evil evil MacBook, I didn't really have decent material to post here. But hopefully I can make up for it with this post, since it took a LOT of time ;-). For today I decided to put together an overview of all finishes that are available nowadays. Please let me know if I forgot one!

A creme is one of the most popular finishes we know. This is just a plain color without any glitter, shimmer, etc added to it. The finish is glossy and smooth.

A jelly is just like a creme, but the main difference is the substance: more jelly-like. They tend to be sheer but they make up for it by being xtremely glossy.

The shimmer finish is a colored base with shimmer added to it, most of the times that color is silver but we're seeing contrasting colors more often.

Glass flecked polishes look like they contain small glass particles, often mixed in a jelly base. The finish is very smooth, yet sparkly.

You could say neon describes color, not finish. But most neons do have a particular finish, very bright colors that often dry semi-matte.

A frost is a very fine shimmery polish with obvious bruststrokes. These kind of finishes are losing popularity and mostly seen in older polishes.

The pearl finish is quite similar to the frost finish, but it has a more pearly sheen to it.

Foil polishes often have a metallic base color with very fine glitter added to it. The finish is very smooth yet sparkly.

Metallic finishes make your nails appear like metal. Metallic polishes are especially popular in copper, gold or silver.

Glitter is one of most flashiest finishes. These glitters are often put in a jelly base. The amount of glitter can vary a lot. Sometimes you'll need top coat to smoothen the surface.

Mostly glitter in a clear base so they're often used as a top coat. String glitter consists out of glitters in rectangular shapes, often in silver or iridiscent colors.

Just as string glitter, these are mostly used as a top coat. The glitters in this clear base are round shaped.

Another glitter top coat, but with glitter in the shape of squares.

A very popular glitter shape: hex or hexagonal. These are very popular and more common these days. Often used in regular glitter polish as well.

This is a very special glitter top coat, in this picture you see stars, but there are also glitter top coats containing hearts and diamonds (rhombus).

This finish dries completely matte, no shine whatsoever. These dry quickly and sometimes end up being streaky. Handlotion is to be avoided because it decreases the matte effect.

Satin finishes end up matte as well, but not entirely matte. There is still a slight shine, but not enough to classify it as glossy.

Just like mattes, suedes are completely matte. Suedes contain shimmer though, so that's what sets them apart from regular mattes.

Holographic polishes contain rainbow colored glitter, which changes color on the reflection of light. This finish is very obvious in sun light.

Holographic glitter in a different color base. The glitter is often more sparse and while it does change color upon different light, there is no rainbow effect to be seen.

Flakie polishes consist out of a jelly base with very fine opal (often duochrome) particles in it. They're mostly used for layering as the jelly base is often sheer.

Duochrome polishes change color on the reflection of light. True duochromes are very obvious and often show 2 colors, but sometimes even more.

This finish is often confused with duochrome or shimmer. An iridiscent finish is a color that flashes a different color. These are not obvious enough to be a duochrome.

This is a half transparent finish, often used in French manicures to show off the white tips. A lot of sheers are salmon, nude or pink.

This is a strange and not that well known finish. A water finish resembles the characteristics of a jelly, but is less opaque.

Pfew I think I got them all! *wipes off forehead*. I hope you liked this post, what's your favorite finish?
Thanks so much for reading and till next time!
- Michèle

April 24, 2010, 9:00:00 AM

Eyeko - Vampira polish

Eyeko Vampira Polish

Hi guys! Long time no see! My absence was caused by my crappy laptop's decision to call it a day. My hard drive completely froze and never really recovered, so all of my pre-made swatches are gone, down the drain :-(.

Luckily I do have this one for you today: Vampira polish by Eyeko. Eyeko has just released five new trendy shades including a taupe, pastel pink, coral and this black and red glitter polish. The packaging is very cool. Every shade has their own designed label, absolutely adorable.

Vampira Polish (for gothic nails) is the star of the collection, hands down.
I *love* this black base filled with bright red glitter. I think it's pretty hot, I could totally picture Elena from The Vampire Diaries wearing this. Not Bella though: "I've been tortured, Alice painted my toenails!". Aaaanyway, Eyeko sure knows how to please a vampire infatuated girl like me.

The application was alright, definitely the best out of all the Eyeko polishes I've tried so far. It only needs 2 coats for complete opacity. It is a bit on the thick side though, so I would recommend adding some thinner for easier application. The finish is rather dull as well, you'll absolutely need a top coat to make it lust-worthy glossy.

Eyeko polishes cost £3.50 (€4.- or $5.40) for 8.5ml, which I don't find to be that cheap actually. However, for a unique color like this I wouldn't mind making an exception. On the other hand: their shipping is extremely cheap: either free (if you're in the UK or Europe) or $5.40 for all international orders.

This was it for today, thanks for reading and have a great weekend!

- Michèle

EDIT: I compared this polish with China Glaze - Lubu Heels (14ml for $2.99) this weekend, and they're are really similar, the glitter in Vampira Polish is brighter though.

This polish was sent to me for review by Eyeko

April 19, 2010, 9:00:00 AM

Lacquered Leopard

Konad M57 Matte Magic China Glaze H&M Moonless Night

Hi guys! How is everyone doing? I'm enjoying my last night of the weekend: it's almost monday again! Since my last post was about animals I felt like creating this beastly look ;-). You all know I'm no Konad girl, but I do think subtle Konadicures are something I could get used to, they're cool.

I started of with H&M's Moonless Night, a black shimmery two-coater, I promise I'll show it to you some other time!
After that I applied one coat of Matte Magic by China Glaze. I don't own many different matte top coats to compare it with, but I think it's pretty good. I love how it transforms your polish into real matte hotness, instead of a cowardly satin finish.

For stamping I used plate M57 and plain old, nothing out of the extraordinary, top coat. It's probably due to the fact I'm boring, but I love how simple and subtle it looks. Leopard prints often border on tacky, but a little goes a long way, I'd say!

Thanks for reading and I wish you a great week!

Psst, yes this photo is mirrored, my fingers always pointing in the same direction bore me, lol.

April 14, 2010, 4:30:00 PM

How to: How I shape my nails

Hi everyone! How are you all doing? For today I've decided to write a short little post on how I shape my nails, since some of you have been asking me about this. I'm sure there are many ways to do this, but this is mine :-).

nail shapes

Shape up!

Ok, first thing to decide, is your desired shape. There are about 5 basic shapes to choose from: pointed, square, squoval, round and stiletto. In the past women always went with a rounded or oval shape. Nowadays the square and squoval (stands for squared oval) looks are really popular. A new trend however is the pointed and stiletto look.

The stiletto thing is not really my cup of tea, I've seen them once in real life and I wasn't that thrilled about it, they just don't seem practical to me. I might stab myself while I'm sleeping.
I do think they look very vixen-like when they're covered in ManGlaze hotness ;-). And they're great canvases for nail art.
Most of the times they're artificial, I think I'd have to grow very long nails to achieve this look.

On the catwalk we're seeing a lot of oval shaped nails, so I'm guessing that's going to be a trend as well.

My nails are always hovering between squoval and square. They say nails are less weak if you file them like this, I'm not sure how true this is, but I've had way less breaks since stopped filing them round!

Wear a dark color

I always try to shape my nails when I'm wearing a dark color. This way it's easier to see the actual shape of the nail. When I'm filing my nails without nail polish I always end up with crooked nails since my nailbeds aren't symmetrical at all.. And, they're not the same length either, so to end up with similar lengths, I'm ignoring my naked nails entirely ;-).

I got this great tip from Kirsten from The Dutch Nail Blog, and I'm doing it like this ever since!

Step away from the clippers

Alright, tt's time to dig up your file! I'm not a fan of clippers, every time I use them, my nails split. So, after messing up a 1000 times and ending up with really short nails, I'm sticking with just filing, *foolproof*. If your nails are more on the softer side, clipping might not be a problem.

I can't stress this enough, but please invest in a glass file, they may be more expensive, but they last you a very long time. You'll have less risk of tears and splits, when you're using a glass file.

I use a fine buffing file too. I use this when I'm done shaping, to soften up any hard edges you might have.

Let's start!

When you're filing your nails, please don't move your file back and forth, it can cause damage. I often hear you're not allowed to file the walls of your nails, but the rebel in me decides to do so anyway. If I don't, I won't achieve the shape I want.

As you can see in the picture, I always file in one direction, and that's the center of the nail. This way the edges remain the smoothest.

Tada, you're done! Now, I'm really curious to see what everyone's shape preference is! Please fill out my poll if you'd like to. I hope this was helpful to some of you, please take care and till next time!

What shape do you prefer?

Pointed Stiletto Squoval Square Round   

April 11, 2010, 3:21:00 PM

H&M - Creme de la Creme

H&M Creme de la Creme
H&M Creme de la Creme
H&M  Creme de la Creme

Hi guys! How is everybody doing? I hope fine :-). As I'm typing this it's already past 3am over here, I'm so nocturnal, it's insane!

Anyway, before I go to bed, I want to show you another H&M polish, one that belongs to the same line as the one I showed you yesterday.

Meet 'Creme de la Creme' by H&M. I'm having a really hard time restraining myself from typing 'Creme de la Menthe' though, haha! This golden polish remained untried for so long, because I really wasn't feeling the dull golden color. When the first stroke of polish finally hit my nail, I almost kicked myself for not trying it sooner. I was pleasantly surprised to see this wasn't just any gold!

Creme de la Creme is actually a fine mix of silver and golden particles, I kinda like it! I do think the overall color could've been more vibrant, but I can imagine this polish would pop more on a sunkissed hand. Creme de la Creme consists out of a gazillion fine holographic glitters, it's really subtle and delicate. It only took two coats, a lot of smoothness and major quick drying, to decide its application is pretty great!

Well, I'm off to sleep, good day and night to all of you! Thanks for stopping by and take care.

April 10, 2010, 11:08:00 AM

H&M - You Rock My World

H&M You Rock My World
H&M You Rock My World
H&M You Rock My World

Hi everyone! It's friday again, yay! Since I pretty much blinded everyone the other day with the Nfu Oh holo, I'm going for something really subtle today. HM - You Rock My World. That's just its name but for me, this is so true!

H&M nail polish is definitely in my top 5 brands, they have a great and every changing color selection, the formula is pretty good and their prices are reasonable. It just sucks that not every H&M is selling cosmetics!

You Rock My World is a really fine and subtle holo, the holo effect is there, but it is kinda shy. Silver is SO not my color, but this one isn't that bad, since it's leaning a bit towards gun metal grey. I don't have anything negative to say about the formula, 2, quick drying, coats did the trick.

Of course I wouldn't be me if I didn't show you the color in regular lighting, I think I'd prefer wearing this one on sunny days only, because it's a bit lifeless without the sun, just like me haha.

So we're at the end of this post again, thanks for stopping by and take care!

April 8, 2010, 8:25:00 AM

Nfu Oh, Queen of Holos, #65

Nfu Oh 65
Nfu Oh 65
Nfu Oh 65

Hi everyone! I hope everyone's doing fine! Since I've been showing you some subtle holos lately, I decided to show you this blingtastic one: Nfu Oh's number 65. Nfu Oh holographic nail polishes are really something else, I have yet to find a holo that's louder, bolder and more in your face than the ones by Nfu Oh. Eventhough I prefer my holos to be more scattered, subtle, I do love this extravagancy every now and then.

When I wear this, there's no way I can stop looking at it. And apparently, I'm not the only one: on my way to work this guy stopped me to look at my nails haha! 65 is a light blue dense holo, with a powdery finish. Application is a bit weird, very smooth but also very patchy, it took me 3 coats to cover up any bald spots. These holos are still quite holo in regular lighting, how cool is that!?

What do you think of holos like these? Too much or is there no such thing when it comes to holos?

Thanks so much for reading, take care!

FOLLOW UP: This polish has pretty bad wear, after two days it was chipped all over.

April 6, 2010, 10:25:00 PM

Coral Comparison featuring OPI, Essence, P2 & Catrice

Essence What do U think?, Catrice I Scream Peach!, P2 Flamboyant and OPI Shootout at the O.K. Coral

Hi guys! After swatching Catrice's I Scream Peach! the other day, I really felt like doing a comparison! I picked out four colors to compare: Essence - What do U think?, Catrice - I Scream Peach!, P2 - Flamboyant and OPI - Shootout at the O.K. Coral. As you can see, these are somewhat similar in the bottle.

Essence What do U think?, Catrice I Scream Peach!, P2 Flamboyant and OPI Shootout at the O.K. Coral

On the nail, they are quite different, well two of them are. What do U think and I Scream Peach! are almost identical, I think the latter is a teeny tiny bit darker. Like I mentioned, these are really close dupes of Chanel's Orange Fizz!
The formula of these are really similar too, they're both cremes and they both need 3 coats. The one by Essence is more smooth when it comes to application.

P2 Flamboyant is darker and more vibrant, a bolder color. The finish of this one is kinda where a creme and a jelly meet. It took me 4 coats to get rid of the evil VNL, but other than that, application was perfectly fine.

OPI's Shootout at the O.K. is really different from the others, it is slightly duochrome, alternating between orange and pink. The formula of this one is really good, still needing 3 coats, but applies like a dream.

I think coral is a difficult color though, I love how summer-y it looks, but I do think colors like these tend to look better on someone with a tan, and obviously I don't have one haha. Will you be wearing coral this summer?

Thanks for reading and see you next time!
- Michèle

April 5, 2010, 4:09:00 AM

Catrice Ultimate Nail LACQUER vs. Chanel

Catrice New Polishes

Hi guys! Happy Easter!! I'm not really celebrating, besides eating too much chocolate of course, so I have some time to show you a few new polishes I'm really excited about.

Catrice, a European brand, released an entire new collection for this spring and summer. This brand normally is releasing pretty conservative colors, but now they really managed to surprise me! This 'Ultimate Nail LACQUER' collection consists out of 32 (!) trendy new colors. Catrice says they were inspired by the new trends that we've seen on the catwalk this year. Sooo of course I had to indulge and buy some of their polishes. 3 of those I'll be discussing today, and they have such an exciting thing in common: they look a lot like some of Chanel's best selling polishes!

Catrice Sold Out Forever
Catrice - Sold Out Forever
Catrice Sold Out Forever

First off, let me show you Sold Out Forever (lol), which funnily enough, sold out almost everywhere I've been haha. At the moment, this is said to be the closest dupe of Chanel's Jade. Yes, even closer than Claire's Dream Catcher or Charlotte Russe's Jade! Whoa. It even has the legendary shimmer. Unfortunately I don't own any of Chanel's polishes so I can't compare the two :-(. I had a really hard time to get this color accurate, the close up on the left is best to be trusted.

I'm really digging the color, eventhough shades like these always manage to create the infamous lobster hands.

Catrice Lost In Mud
Catrice - Lost In Mud

Next up we have Lost In Mud, a color very close to Particulière, I've found a comparison photo here, what do you think? I think Lost in Mud is a tad darker. Either way, it sure is pretty! I don't find Particulière that exciting to pay that amount of money for, so Lost In Mud is a good enough option for me. I enjoy colors like these a lot, they're just so timeless.

Catrice I Scream Peach!
Catrice - I Scream Peach!

Last but not least: I Scream Peach! This one is almost identical (a teeny tiny bit darker and more vibrant) to 'What Do U Think' by Essence, which is also known for being a dupe for Chanel's Orange Fizz! (If you haven't yet, please check out this wicked comparison by Megan Chair from Little Music Boxes!) So in theory, this one should be rather similar as well. I just love Catrice for being so trendy ;-). I was surprised to see how much I liked this color, I think this is a beautiful shade of coral.

Note: I want to add that I'm not saying all of these are exact dupes because I haven't compared them myself (yet?), but they are pretty similar in the least!

I'm not head over heels with the formula though. These were all 3 coaters, and all on the thick side, so I had to add thinner to all three. The brush is a bit too short for my liking but other than that everything was fine. Drying time was ok and no bubbling or anything. I have to admit I haven't tried the other polishes from this line yet, so this applies to the 3 above. And I have to say: these polishes are cheap! Only 2.49 euros a piece, so you won't hear me complaining.

Catrice Ultimate Nail LACQUER
Picture is property of catrice.eu

For more information and a complete color overview you can check out their website: www.catrice.eu. Catrice is also releasing The Oceana Collection this summer including four other new shades, 2 of them being mattes! Check it out.

Well, this was it for today! I hope everyone is enjoying their Easter weekend, don't eat too much chocolate! Thanks for stopping by and till next time :-).