Spidey Sense

Black Widow Bottle

This cool polish, Lilypad Lacquer’s Rainbows in Space, looks like two totally different polishes depending on whether it’s in the sun or the shade.  Under direct light, its bronze micro-shimmer gives it a rich, almost chocolate brown hue, whereas in the shade, it’s a dusky charcoal grey.

Black Widow 1

Black Widow 3

And the perfect palette on which to display these silver nail charms from Daily Charme.  It’s a little bit of Black Widow mixed with a little bit of Brown Recluse, and it’s Halloween mani perfection.

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Tough and Tender

tough-and-tender-bottle

For those days when you want your pretty, glittery nails to sport their very own brass knuckles.  Except on your nails instead of your fingers and silver-plated, here a couple of favourite spiky nail charms from Daily Charme atop Glam Polish’s Six Impossible Things.

tough-and-tender-collage

KB Kitties

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With a little help from some water vinyl nail art stickers from Daily Charme.  More on those in a second.

But first, the polishes!  Which would be KB Shimmer’s soft, coral-y pink, Blush Money, topped with KB’s leopard print glitter, Spot Sign.  Blush Money, a peachy-pink holo sprinkled with gold shimmer, is a real chameleon, shifting from a bright coral-rose in the shade to a warm, glowy peach in the sun.  I think both in the bottle and as against my very pale skin it looks like Nars’ venerable Orgasm blush.  And Spot Sign, as always, is awesome – a leopard print mani in just a few swipes of the brush – but temperamental. The little C-shaped leopard glitters want to stick together and they really do snag on everything, so Spot Sign will require your patience, and about two layers of topcoat.

kb-kitties-collage

So the nail art stickers?  Bit of a learning curve with these guys.  Having never used water vinyls before (really, I’m not much for nail art accessories of any description) I didn’t know what to expect, and the instructions on the back of the package were somehow both overly simplistic AND needlessly complicated.  And that really did these vinyls a great disservice, because in the end, they turned out to be fantastically easy to apply. They’ve also worn beautifully and didn’t smudge all to heck and back when I topped them with topcoat.  That’s nail artist pay dirt right there!

kb-kitties-water-vinyls-pic

The instructions for these cute kitty nail stickers called for an assortment of cutting and soaking and buffing and then, somewhat alarmingly, the back-to-back use of both water and a blow dryer.  Sounds dangerous! Also made very little sense to me, which is why I was initially left with the impression that these stickers were total garbage.

But they weren’t!  Far from it, actually.  I just needed to spend a bit of time tinkering about with these very versatile vinyls.  Basically, it went a bit like this:

  1. Peel the protective film off the sheet of stickers.  The printed designs will be on one side, and a simple, lightweight piece of adhesive paper will be on the other.
  2. Taking a pair of sharp manicure scissors, cut out the design or designs you’d like to use, including the adhesive backing.  Don’t feel confined to taking one design – here the cute black kitties – at a time; if there’s two designs side by side on the sheet that you just love, then cut them out together!  Also, you don’t need to cut in extremely close to the design, as the backing on these vinyls is translucent and the edges disappear entirely once topcoated.
  3. Taking a small bowl of room temperature water and working one at a time, drop your tiny speck of paper into the water.  You’ll immediately see the adhesive backing take on water, and then after another 10 or so seconds, the vinyl design will separate from the paper.
  4. Reach out and touch the tip of your finger to the vinyl – it’ll cling to it a lot like a contact lens.  Then apply the vinyl to your (painted and dried, but now slightly damp) nails by simply touching your finger to your nails.  The sticker will now cling to your nails, and if your nails are wet enough (dunk them in the water you used to soak the vinyls and blow off the excess) you’ll have a bit of play to push your sticker around until you’ve found the perfect place for your design.
  5. Top with a layer of high gloss topcoat and marvel at the streak-free finish.  I really can’t oversell that point enough – many a mani has been ruined or at least severely compromised by streaky black detail paint!  That these kitties came out so crisply is something of a nail art miracle to me!

kb-kitties-sun-fingers

Mocha Madness

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Hmm, New Years resolution for 2017: Stop drinking so damn much coffee!  Because I really do consume a great quantity of caffeine, and that’s not the best thing for a person (or their wallet, if they’re buying out, or their teeth, or their sleeping habits, or the environment, or just their general health.  Wait, tell me again why we slug the stuff back as though it were the very essence of life?  Oh right, because it’s bloody, bitterly fabulous! And because there’s a Starbucks on every third street corner, and what else will go there if not another Starbucks?)

Since this has turned into a bit of a diatribe on coffee, I should note that I’ll probably have an easier time than others kicking the caffeine habit, as I’m one of those annoying types that can turn my addiction on and off at will.  Years ago when I went to PEI for three weeks with my mom, who has never consumed a single ounce of coffee in her entire life, I abstained as well.  Aggravatingly enough, I didn’t suffer any withdrawal symptoms, although re-entry was a bit of a bitch – I had three dee-licious cups of strawberry black tea with our final New Glasgow meal, and I was so wired, I probably could have pushed the car back to Charlottetown.

But there’s still a handful of hours left in 2016, and I’m spending them blogging, nibbling on holiday chocolate, messing about with the Sims (4, and I kind of hate it, but gripes for another time and place) and nursing two – count ’em, TWO! – iced coffees from a favourite local shop.  I’m also wearing both coffee and chocolate on my nails, in the form of two more lovely gifts from my husband, coffee cup nail charms from Daily Charme over KB Shimmer’s espresso-hued brown holo, Oh My Ganache.  Mad for this mocha, indeed.

best-cafe-mocha-fingers

In Winter It’s a Marshmallow World

snowmen-bottle

Oh my gosh, so much snow yesterday. And perfect snow, too – downy, fluffy, sparkly bits of icy lace falling straight from the heavens. Beautiful and festive, yes, but also a royal pain in the arse to navigate – on snow days, if you don’t need to be out on the roads, you really shouldn’t be. Best to leave the marshmallow world to the snowmen, like these cute little charms my husband recently gifted me from Daily Charme, here atop KB Shimmer’s snowstorm-in-a-bottle, Snow Way. At least with their cute little scarves and jaunty hats, they’re warmly attired!

snowmen-fingers

Sprinkle Pops

Sprinkle Pops Again

Because every so often I just have to paint my nails like something frosted and sprinkled, preferably both! Donuts are the ideal, but here I used a sweet lollipop nail charm from Daily Charme – I’m indiscriminate about the foodstuffs I’ll top with sprinkles, mostly in nail art, but occasionally sometimes also in life (I CANNOT make a chocolate box cake with tub icing without coating it in about half a cup of rainbow jimmies. Crunchy sugar goodness.) 🙂