Thursday, 30 August 2012

Barry M Magentic Sparkle Blue

I went off magentic nail polish a while ago because every company seems to be doing it now, but I spotted one in Superdrug recently that looked pretty cool. Barry M Sparkle Blue may have one of the most boring names ever, but the polish itself is anything but dull. It's a sort of pale blue/grey before the magnet is applied, but after it's magnetised it reveals a stunning bright blue shimmer. The magnet it comes with is a fun star pattern. The first coat went on quite sheer but I used the magnet after painting on the second coat and it was perfectly opaque.

In hindsight I think perhaps I should have taken the photos in the shade because the sun obscures the pattern slightly, but I wanted to show how sparkly it is!

Pretty cool, isn't it? But wait, there's more...

It's a duochrome! At the right angle, the blue shimmer turns purple.

What's your opinion of magnetic nail polish? Are you still a fan or are you over it? Sparkle Blue may have just rekindled my love of it...

Tuesday, 28 August 2012

Medieval Nails

I may have mentioned (once or twice!) that I am a bit of a history geek; in fact, I work at an historic house and intern at another! My favourite period is the Regency, but I also have a huge soft spot for the medieval era. A couple of weeks ago I decided to go to a medieval fair that was happening nearby, and knew I had to paint my nails especially for it.

I ummed and ahhed about it, and eventually decided use medieval banner designs as inspiration. Every noble family had their own individual design as a means of identification (particularly in battle). Their range of pigments and dyes was much smaller then, so I used bold, primary colours for the designs.

I used so many colours that it seems silly to list them all, so if you want to know any, please ask. I stamped using a two Bundle Monster plates on my thumb and ring finger; my index was done with a striping brush; the middle finger used a striping brush and a dotting tool; and finally my pinkie used scotch tape. I made the designs up except for the one on my middle finger, which actually comes off a fireback at work!

What do you think of my medieval-inspired nails? Are you a history geek too?!

Monday, 27 August 2012

OPI Last Friday Night

Yesterday I featured Nails Inc Baker Street and promised to show you what I layered over it - well, here it is. OPI Last Friday Night is the only polish I bought from the OPI Katy Perry Collection that came out last year, other than the Black Shatter. It has blue micro-glitter with larger blue, pink and magenta hexagonal glitter in a sheer blue base. I used only one coat over Baker Street, and it resulted in a gorgeously squishy look.

And here is the song itself - the long version, because it has Corey Feldman in it and he will be forever immortalised in my mind as one of the Frog brothers in The Lost Boys.

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Nails Inc Baker Street

Yup. I finally caved and bought Nails Inc Baker Street. It was only a matter of time, really - I can't resist blue nail polish. It called to me with its siren song, and I was powerless against it.

Also, it was on sale on That may have had something to do with it!

Ever since Beyonce wore Baker Street on her first public appearance after giving birth to Blue Ivy or whatever ridiculous name she gave her daughter, it has quickly become one of Nails Inc's most famous polishes. It's a stunning, bright blue creme shade that applied perfectly in two coats.

Isn't it gorgeous? I must do a comparison with my other bright blues. I layered something over it which I thought looked pretty awesome, and I'll show you the combination tomorrow.

In other news, I finally booked my holiday to Spain in October. I'm off to Seville and Madrid for nine days. I'M SO EXCITED!!

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Essie Mojito Madness

Happy Saturday (and bank holiday weekend to my fellow Brits)! I don't actually get a weekend because between my job and my internship I work seven days a week. It's pretty tiring! I was at my internship today and slipped over in the inner courtyard, which has very hard paving slabs. I'm okay, but I bruised my pride...and my arse. XD

So I've probably mentioned once...or twice...that I'm not a green nail polish lover. They just don't suit me - I don't have the right colouring for them. Still, every now and then I like to give greens a chance, so when I bought the Summer Mini Collection recently the first colour I put on was Essie Mojito Madness. It's a bright green creme that reminds me a lot of Barry M Spring Green. It has a nice formula and was opaque in two coats.

It's nice, isn't it? It doesn't look too bad on me here, but from a distance...eugh. Like I said, yellow-toned greens don't suit me at all. Oh well, I have a friend who is a green fiend, so it looks like she'll be getting a little present!

What do you think of Mojito Madness? Are there any colours that just don't suit you?

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Barry M Denim

Hi, a quick post today because I'm exhausted. I had a tiring day at work and then I went straight over to see my grandparents as it's their 60th wedding anniversary today. You know how you can get a birthday message from the Queen for your 100th birthday? Apparently the Queen also does them for people who have managed to remain married to someone for sixty years and not strangle them. My grandparents were so excited by their card from the Queen, they've been showing it to everyone!

Barry M Denim is a shimmery medium blue that, yup, looks a little bit like denim. It's very pigmented - almost a one-coater, although I did two for the photos - and dries to a satin finish, so I recommend using a top coat as I did. I automatically gravitate towards blues, but this is a particularly awesome one.

Monday, 20 August 2012

China Glaze Flip Flop Fantasy

Another day, another neon nail polish...

My brother and I share a car (our mum's old one) but he's gone to Australia for six months, which means I have it all to myself - hurrah! I decided to give the inside a proper clean today, which took an HOUR. In the process I found - none of which was mine - eight water bottles, two cassette to mp3 player converters, an EpiPen that expired nine years ago (neither of us could even drive then!), two sunglasses cases, and an inflatable kangaroo. No joke.

Right. Back to nail polish. China Glaze Flip Flop Fantasy is something of a legend. It's a neon coral shade that, as far as I know, is completely unique. If you want to get your nails noticed it's the perfect polish, because it is LOUD. For the photos below I used three thin coats plus top coat because as with all neons, it dries to a matte finish. The first two are in the sun and the second two in the shade to show how the colour really pops.

I'm also wearing this on my toes at the moment, but I'll spare you the photos because I think feet are creepy!

Sunday, 19 August 2012

China Glaze Surfin' For Boys

I think I've been showing a lot of neons on here recently, but to be honest they're almost all I've been wearing on my nails! I've got to make the most of summer while I can. Today's neon is China Glaze Surfin' For Boys, a bold red-leaning coral with shimmer. The shimmer wasn't keen to show itself, but you can see it peeking out in the last photo. I used two coats plus top coat, and it was instant love.

You may have noticed that between this post and the previous one my nails have got dramatically shorter. They were the longest they've been for a good six months due to the wonders of OPI Nail Envy (a huge thanks to Jai for recommending it a while ago!), but I found that they just weren't very practical for work and whatnot. I love the idea of long nails in theory...but in practice, not so much. What's your take on them?

Thursday, 16 August 2012

a-england Lady of the Lake & Tristam

Hi! I have two a-england swatches for you today. I've had these nail polishes for ages and they're among my favourites of my entire collection, so I decided it was high time I showed them. You will have seen these swatched many times before...but now it's my turn. XD

Lady of the Lake is a blue-toned purple polish with the most amazing scattered holographic shimmer. In the shade it looks like normal shimmer, but in the sunlight it shows its true colours. One of the (many) things I like about a-england polishes is the formula; they all apply perfectly. LotL is very pigmented and was almost opaque in one coat, although I used two for the photos below. All but the last photo were taken in the sun.

Tristam has the same scattered holographic shimmer as Lady of the Lake, but its base colour is a navy blue. It is just as stunning as LotL. I actually wore this one when I went on holiday to Greece last year, and after a week it still looked great. It had grown out a bit at the cuticle and there was some tip-wear, but no chips. How awesome is that?! Again, I used two coats plus top coat for the photos below.

Do you have any a-england polishes? If not - why not?!

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Zoya Crystal

Crystal is my one and only Zoya polish. I have nothing against Zoya, it's just not a brand that's easy to get hold of in the UK. I found Crystal in a random nail salon when I was living on the Isle of Wight (or The Island as I like to call it) last year.

Zoya Crystal was part of Zoya's autumn/winter collection a couple of years ago. It's a blue foil with gold flecks, and it. Is. Gorgeous. Applying it was a doddle and it was opaque in two coats. I took way too many photos of it; the first four are in the shade, and the last two are trying to capture the last of the evening sun from my bathroom window! XD

Random fact: Crystal was the name of a hamster I had as a child. My pets all had silly names when I was little: Snowy the hamster, Crystal the hamster, Snuffs the rabbit (prompted a lot of "Snuffs snuffed it" jokes from people when he died. I was not amused), Smokie the guinea pig, Owen the guinea pig (named after Michael Owen), Roxy the hamster, and finally dear Claude. It looks like over the years I've matured from cute names to human names for pets!

What do you think of Zoya Crystal? And have you had any pets with silly names?