All Gummed Up

Turn it Up Bottle

I predict that this adorable polish, Turn it Up from Orly’s recently released In the Mix Collection, will become to the fall of 2015 what Orly’s holographic Mirrorball was to the winter of 2014 – everyone’s most wanted, most unfindable, nail polish. Turn it Up, which looks like Cirque’s much coveted Kaleidoscope glitter topper, only much more readily available – I got mine at my local Sally Beauty Supply – and for a little less money, reminds me of gumballs, and pairs beautifully with an ultra sugary pink like this one, Serum No. 5’s Awesome Blossom.

Turn it Up Fingers

Turn it Up applies really nicely too, and is the rare kind of glitter-stuffed lacquer that is neither too dry, nor too lumpy. My one beef with Orly polishes, and indeed this one, is that their brushes are a shade too thin and long. I prefer brushes on the flatter, wider side. But that’s a minor quibble with an otherwise super cute polish that I think everyone’s going to be coveting pretty soon. Get yours while you can!

Turn it Up Hand

Pink Bubbles

Pink Bubbles HandA beautiful Saturday like the one I’m enjoying demands a favourite manicure, a simple but eye-catching combination of a fun, (glow-in-the-dark!) base polish and a cute matte glitter topper. No fuss, no muss, and we’re all out the door in a flash and on our way to better weekend things.

For these nails, I topped three coats of Serum No. 5’s glow-in-the-dark Awesome Blossom with one coat of Polish Me Silly’s pink, blue and white glitter topper, Mr. Bubble. I’ve used Awesome Blossom as a base in more manicures than I can count, although when it comes to its glow-in-the-darkiness, it has never thrown off more light than a watery, pastel violet. A bit of a disappointment there. But separate and apart from the glow-in-the-dark gimmick, Awesome Blossom really lives up to its name, providing a beautiful background for a wide variety of glitter polishes and more intricate nail art. Colour-wise, these photos actually do not show Awesome Blossom in its full, in-real-life, ELECTRIC NEON PINK glory. I mean, it’s super, super bright – a true pastel neon pink. It’ll burn the eyeballs straight out your skull if you stare at it too long. Although probably not. ūüėČPink Bubbles Bottle

Here’s what I was talking about with that glow-in-the-dark thing. These photos show the glow as a dark blue, but I assure you, in real life it’s lilac. Colour-matching blues/purples/greens in photography, how you vex me so!Pink Bubbles Glow Hand

Marathon Mani

Dotted HandI started this simple (glow in the dark!) manicure last night, getting all the way to the topcoat stage before deciding I actually didn’t particularly care for it. The colours I had chosen – neon-y orange, green and turquoise on a baby blue base – were just not gelling. But instead of blighting it from the earth with acetone, as is my usual, frustrated practice, I slept on it, and woke up with crease marks hither and yon. Then I went out to run some errands, and somewhere between coffee and groceries and home again, this manicure really started to grow on me, in no small part because the extra sunny day my city is enjoying is making the glow-in-the-dark base polish I used here, Serum No. 5’s Blue Blazes, FINALLY live up to its name. So I came home, dusted off any accumulated scone crumbs and slapped on a coat of crease-eradicating, high shine Seche Vite, frankly amazed that it had survived as well as it had (through seven hours of sleep and a morning filled with errands, no less) without a protective layer of topcoat. Truly, these are some nails with staying power. Which I suppose is a good thing, as in the end, I think I quite like this mani. And hey, it only took 14 hours from start to finish, which is not ridiculous at all. ūüėČBlue Blazes Collage

I’m All Ears

All Ears HandI’ve just noticed that I have featured a lot of blue polish-based manicures on the blog as of late. This runs contrary to my general nail art MO, which is to dabble a bit across the entire rainbow spectrum, never lingering too long on any one hue. But I guess I’ve been feeling the blue lately (as opposed to just plain old feeling blue) because here’s another one!All Ears Bottle

It looks like Mickey’s got his head in the clouds again with this mani, where I brushed on one coat of All Ears, a Mickey glitter-studded polish from Whimsical Ideas by Pam, over a background of fluffy white clouds in a blue (and glow in the dark) sky. All Ears is lovely and classic Mickey – tiny red, white and yellow matte hexes make up the bulk of the glitter mix, but the Mickey heads are plentiful and not the least bit difficult to capture on the brush – and the blue background polish is a favourite of mine, Serum No. 5’s Blue Blazes, a sky blue creme that glows electric neon turquoise. Here’s the best shot of Blue Blazes in action I’ve ever taken, which is still not saying much, but we’re getting better!Glow in the Dark Mickey

Today’s Weather is Snow Fun At All

Snow Fun Weather HandHere’s a fairly accurate representation of today’s weather around my neck of the woods, as depicted through a handful of snow-themed nail polishes. Over on my thumb we have Serum No. 5’s glow-in-the-dark Blue Blazes, which was the clear, cloudless colour of the sky when I woke up this morning. On my index and middle fingers you’ll find the tiny flurries that began to swirl around the car as I drove to the coffee shop in the form of KB Shimmer’s baby blue and white glitter polish, Snow Way! And finally we have the snowstorm that started pounding down just a few moments after I returned home on my ring and little fingers in the form of KB Shimmer’s next level snow polish, Snow Much Fun. The whole thing lasted maybe 20 minutes, and since then it has been holding steady with banks of ominous-looking clouds and near-zero temperatures. Ah, Canadian winters, you are SUCH a special delight, but you do provide some pretty great inspiration for nail art!

Ah, and as nearly always, lending that extra little touch of verisimilitude is the tiny cat fur stuck to the side of my ring finger in every. single. photo., which is of course something I didn’t notice until after I had destroyed this manicure and long past the point of no return. Just one of them days, I guess.Snow Way! BottleSnow Much Fun Bottle

Strawberry Fruitcake

Strawberry FruitcakeMy favourite everything-AND-the-kitchen-sink glitter, Candy Lacquer’s Candy Cane Fiesta, meets my bestest background polish, Serum No. 5’s Awesome Blossom, in this super fruity manicure that – Christmas-themed polish notwithstanding – totally reminds me of Strawberry Shortcake. Miss Shortcake’s cousin from Christmastown, perhaps, Strawberry Fruitcake? So gimme a call, Tim Burton, if you’d like to collaborate on a foodie-themed sequel to The Nightmare Before Christmas, because I’ve got at least a jumping-off point here. ūüôā



A favourite indie polish maker, Polish Me Silly, is a few days away from a big launch of neon glitter toppers,¬†one or two¬†of which already have my name alllll over them.¬† But until I actually have them in my hot little hands, I’ll just have to make do with frankening together some¬†close-but-not-quite copies that make use of my pre-existing stash.

Here, to get the look of Polish Me Silly’s new black-and-neon Trouble Maker, I topped two glow in the dark polishes, Serum No. 5’s Blue Blazes and Pure Glow Getter, with a mixture of Polish Me Silly’s neon Freckles and Sephora Formula X’s black and white Chaotic.¬† It’s not a perfect match, but close in this case actually counts for more than just horseshoes and hand grenades. ūüėČ

Just for fun, here are two photos of Pure Glow Getter and Blue Blazes doing their glow-in-the-dark thing.¬†¬†I had high hopes for Pure Glow Getter, swatches of which showed¬†your standard white polish with a twist – a¬†delicate, lit-from-within effect in the dark¬†that almost looked like¬†shimmering opals.¬† In reality, it’s temperamental, a touch thick, dries to an¬†almost rubbery finish that will not adhere to other polishes (so forget about using it for detail work) and loses¬†most of its glow the second you¬†add a top coat.¬† But my disappointment with Pure Glow Getter is outweighed by the awesomeness of¬†Blue Blazes, a¬†baby blue cream that glows blindingly bright turquoise in the dark.¬† It, too, dries to¬†a vaguely odd, slightly rubbery finish, but thankfully doesn’t succumb to the ravages of a nice top coat like its glowy sister (HOURS after my nails had last seen light they were still glowing a deep, oceanic blue that¬†not even my crapass photography skills could fail to capture!)055068

Punky Pink

Awesome Blossom 1

I’ve been playing major favourites with my nail polishes this week, choosing a couple of glitter toppers I’ve turned to time and time (and time) again to set against some recent not-so-basic polish purchases.¬† Here I’ve shown one of the first indies I ever bought, Candy Lacquer’s matte glitter topper, Licorice Allsorts.¬† It’s fabulous stuff, and more than meets my personal criteria for a favourite polish with its unique colour mix¬†and abundance of random matte shapes.¬†¬†In a jelly sandwich, it takes on an almost¬†glazed and sprinkled effect, but over just about every other colour, its geometric black¬†and hot pink (and yellow and green and white) glitter gives every mani it touches a¬†girly punk¬†look that’s hard to resist,¬†no matter your age or the last time you stepped on a skateboard (1997) or attended¬†the Warp Tour (never, although I very much wanted to, long past the point of it being an okay thing to do for an old broad such as myself.)

I layered Licorice Allsorts over a new polish, Serum No. 5’s glow in the dark Awesome Blossom.¬† It’s an eye-searingly bright Barbie pink that glows purpley-pink in the dark (which I could not capture in any form with my rapidly-becoming-an-issue photography setup) and dries to a¬†lightly textured finish.¬†¬†In the bottle, Awesome Blossom displays the faintest hint of pink shimmer, but on my nails it was totally undetectable, even before dousing them in two coats of Licorice Allsorts.Awesome Blossom 2

Glow Get ‘Em

Glow In The Dark

Hey, the 1980s called – it’s looking for its glow in the dark nail polish.¬† You seen it?¬† I’ve seen it, of course, because it’s currently all over my nails.¬† What can I say, I am perpetually drawn to the (glow in the) dark side where all the gimmicky, “I won’t possibly use this more than once” polishes live.¬†

Except these polishes, far from being flashy gimmicks, are actually really lovely, with super consistencies, beautiful colours, fun glitter and so much glow pigment, your nails will look lit from within for HOURS after a fresh illumination boost (try to remember this when you do your nails right before bed and then wake up, seconds from shrieking terrified nonsense at the tiny glowing oogie boogies that have disturbed your sleep.)

Here I’ve shown two new-to-me polishes, Lac Attack’s Harry Potter-inspired glitter bomb, APWBD (Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore) over top of Serum No. 5’s white cream, Pure Glow Getter.¬† I’ve been admiring Serum’s glow in the dark creams, shimmers and glitters for some time now, and their recently released spring collection seemed like a good place to begin what’s sure to become an unhealthy materialistic obsession.¬† In its native state, Pure Glow Getter isn’t really anything too special – a nice, easy to apply white cream that dries to a low sheen satin finish.¬† But turn off the lights, as Vanilla Ice would “rap,” and IT GLOWS!¬† My camera/photography skills¬†have proven insufficient in capturing its opalescent glow, but trust me when I say it’s an incongruous combination of eye-searing brightness and subtle, only-visible-in-the-dark¬†“texture” (it’s not¬†textured at all, actually, but when it’s all lit up,¬†it looks almost furry.)Pure Glow Getter LightPure Glow Getter Dark

And over top of¬†Pure Glow Getter, of course, we have the aforementioned APWBD, a glow in the dark glitter topper packed with purple, blue, green and silver holographic glitter (squares, hexes, bars and, evoking the Headmaster of Hogwarts’ spectacles, tiny little holographic half moons.)¬† Unique, outstanding stuff – just like Mr. Dumbledore himself.APWBD LightAPWBD Dark