Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Technical Difficulties…

Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

If you follow me on twitter you already know about this but it looks like this may take some time to fix so I wanted to make sure everyone knows what’s going on. About two weeks ago, I noticed my admin panel was very slow, so slow that nothing would load. I didn’t think much of it and just gave up on posting for the night. After that, I didn’t get a chance to try to post again because I ran into a busy period at work and then took a mini-vacation. This past Monday, I tried to post again only to find that the same problem I had before was still occurring. Nothing loads. I can’t get to the “new post” page. When I can get to it, it won’t load photos (even for this post, I wanted to post a funny “technical difficulties” meme photo and couldn’t). When I’m lucky enough to get a photo loaded, everything gets deleted when I try to save the draft or publish. VampyVarnish suggested that my site may have fallen victim to an attack on WordPress. I spent about an hour on the phone with my hosting provider and on different forums to find a solution, all to no avail. I de-activated some plug-ins which made this post possible using QuickPress but it’s impossible to do any real blogging right now. I’m not sure what’s going on yet but it’s clear that I’m going to have to roll up my sleeves and do a lot of work on this. (I might even have to pull out the big guns – my little brother, programming extraordinaire!) I have a rough work week coming up, so I might not be able to sit down and fiddle with WordPress until this weekend.

I’m so bummed and so, so sorry about this. I have so many new collections to show you. So many pretty photos. T_T

I’m planning to re-install WordPress, etc., but if you have any other suggestions – please let me know!! And thank you for sticking with me!

<3

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OPI Mariah Carey Spring 2013 Collection Swatches Part 1

Sunday, February 24th, 2013

I want to start off by apologizing for my disappearing act this month – My husband and I have been extra consumed by work and life lately so it has been really tough to find extra time for nail polish. So much so that I went nearly a week with completely naked nails!! I did, however, spend all day last Sunday swatching so I have a ton of polish to show you and regularly scheduled posting should resume this week barring any other major life distractions.

In this post, I have the first half of the OPI Mariah Carey Collection. Really, this collection of 8 polishes is actually two collections – 4 liquid sand polishes and 4 regular polishes. The 4 regular polishes seem thematically disjointed. One gammy-pink, one metallic glassy flecky, a pink hex & holo glitter, and one vampy plum -  these colors don’t really seem related to each other or like they belong together. Also, they don’t seem very Mariah Carey to me. Now, I say that with a grain of salt. While I don’t dislike Mariah Carey, I can’t say that I’m her fan. I mean, like everyone my age, I awkwardly slow danced to her music at middle school dance parties and I certainly have belted out “My All” in the shower once or twice. But, other than that, I don’t really know much about her as an artist nor her sense of style and aesthetic. I assume that my lack of knowledge about Mariah is also why the color names are totally over my head. What is Anti-Bleak? Like… not bleak? Sprung… As in sprung someone out of jail? Are these song titles? Am I just too old to get the pop-culture references here? In any case, the two stand out shades for me were Pink Yet Lavender and Anti-Bleak but overall this set was a little underwhelming. I have high hopes for the Liquid Sand shades though and those will be posted soon, I’m almost done with the swatches.

OPI Anti-Bleak

OPI Anti-Bleak, a gorgeous, luxurious vampy plum creme, is probably my favorite from this set. It’s very flattering to my skin-tone - I got a lot of compliments when I wore this one. The application was perfect at two coats, but this three. It’s almost a dead-on dupe for OPI Casino Royale. I went to visit my MIL recently, I was wearing Anti-Bleak and she was wearing Casino Royale. We both had to do a double take, we thought we might be wearing the same color! (My MIL & SILs love nail polish too, I swear it’s like I was meant to marry into their family. lol.) Upon closer inspection, AB is a smidge more purple toned than CR. CR has redder tones. I bought nearly the whole Skyfall collection so I do plan to post those soon!

OPI A Butterfly Moment

OPI A Butterfly Moment is a dusty muted grandma pink with copper shimmer. Not exactly frosty, but it does have a slight speckled effect that reminds me a little of OPI You’re A Doll. The shimmer is slightly iridescent but not noticeably. The application was chalky and took about three coats to even it out. I’m not sure how I feel about this one. I wore it as an NOTD since it was work appropriate but it never wowed me. It just wasn’t particularly flattering on its own.

OPI Pink Yet Lavender

OPI Pink Yet Lavender is a glitter top coat consisting of medium pink hex glitter and small silvery holographic glitter. This swatch is one coat of PYL over A Butterfly Moment and Anti-Bleak. I said before, ABM on its own was not very impressive but I LOVED it topped with PYL. I so wish I had blinged it out when I wore it. PYL and ABM were definitely meant for each other.

OPI Sprung

And, finally, OPI Sprung a fuchsia, coppery, gold glass flecky in a reddish copper base. Sprung is in the same vein as OPI Warm & Fozzie and Nicole by OPI Just Bust A Mauve (swatches of both coming soon). Application was good - this is three coats. I like the metallic glass fleck trend and I hope to see it expand into other colors like blue and green soon.

What do you think? Did you pick up any of these colors?

____

Disclaimer: This collection was provided for review by OPI’s PR.

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Essie Yogaga Collection Fall 2012 Swatches

Monday, December 3rd, 2012

Back in September I reviewed Essie Yogaga and noted that there weren’t very many swatches of the Yogaga collection online. Sure, it’s not the most exciting Essie collection to date, but the lack of coverage still seemed odd. My theory is that a lot of bloggers passed on this collection because it didn’t seem Earth-shattering. Well, on the surface that is true – nothing here is likely blow your mind. Even so, this collection is like a sleeper cell - the seemingly run-of-the-mill colors are all surprisingly flattering and a few are definitely worth owning. (Yes, yes, I know a collection of all crèmes appeals to me, more so than to everyone else). In any case, here are the swatches albeit a bit late.

Essie Boxer Shorts is a light muted periwinkle creme. This photo isn’t accurate – in real life the shade is much less vibrant. These blue/purple shades are just impossible to photograph accurately. The application was good, this is 3 coats. I liked this color more than I expected to – it complimented my skintone nicely.

Essie Spinning Again is a dark brick red crème – also very flattering. The application was smooth like butter. This is 3 coats. I wore Spinning Again during the work week. I think most reds will fly at all but the most conservative offices but Spinning Again, being a red terracota-like shade, is particularly work safe.

Essie Pilates Hottie is a mushroomy lilac. If you’ve read through my archives, then you probably know that lilac is one of my white whales – I *love* lilacs but they all look HORRENDOUS on me. Pilates Hottie, which leans pink, did not look terrible… dare I say, it even looked good. The application however, left something to be desired. The formula was chalky which caused the polish to apply unevenly. I smoothed everything out with a thick slathering of Seche Vite. I’ve found that a self-leveling quick drying top coat like Seche will fix most polishes with problematic application.

Essie Marathin is medium dusky, grayed-out rose-pink. I believe this is what is often referred to as a “grandma” color - still though, it’s professional and flattering. While I get, and appreciate, the gym motif of this collection, but my inner-feminist is not a fan of the name. It would have been much cooler to name this classic shade Marathon instead of Marathin. The formula was a bit thick and it took 3 coats to even everything out.

Essie Gym Dandy is a grey-toned putty with a touch of brown and army green. From this set of colors, I was most excited about Gym Dandy, love it. This color is ”professional, but edgy” personified. It’s slightly darker on the nail than in the bottle. Applied well, would have been good at 2 coats but this is 3 coats.

And finally – this one you’ve already seen but to keep the collection together, I’m reposting the photo.

Essie Yogaga is definitely my favorite from this set. You can read my original post here. Last time I posted Yogaga, people wondered how it stacked up against OPI Did You ‘Ear About Van Gogh and Chanel Frenzy. I still don’t have DYEAVG (Sorry! I’m working backwards so I’m still picking up La Collecion De Espana!) but Frenzy is slightly darker and much more pink toned – not dupish at all.

I’m behind the game since Essie’s Winter collection is already out – my friend recently wore Essie Beyond Cozy and it was ridiculously gorgeous. I hope to have swatches up soon.

So what’s the verdict? Love it, hate it? Is an all crème finish collection the kiss of death?

________________

Disclaimer: This collection was sent for review by Essie’s PR representative.

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Reminder – Zoya Haiku Giveaway Deadline, Today at Midnight!

Sunday, September 16th, 2012

Sorry for the lack of posting last week! I was pretty sick and had to take some time off of work. I pretty much slept for 72 hours straight. I feel a lot better now, so posting will resume as soon as I get caught up at work. (I have a huge deadline on Tuesday, so I probably won’t be able to post until Wednesday at the earliest). I have a ton of swatches backed up just waiting to be posted – I just wanted to reassure everyone that I’m not disappearing again! : D I will also be responding to all your comments – I promise!

We’ve gotten some really great entries for the Zoya Haiku Giveaway – I want to remind everyone that today is the last day of the contest. If you plan to enter, have your Haiku’s in before Midnight! : )

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Confessions of a Reformed Nail Polish Addict

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

It’s been nearly three years since my last confession.

Where have I been for the past three years?

I started this site in law school as a form of productive procrastination. I stopped blogging when I started studying for the bar exam and when I started my first job. My life was so hectic and there were so many major changes, blogging had to take a backseat. For while, I kept doing my nails, taking pictures, and keeping up with new collections even though I wasn’t actively posting. But, slowly, I stopped taking pictures and keeping up with new colors. Eventually, I stopped doing my nails entirely.

There are a lot factors underlying that chain of events. First, I was in court every single day. And I felt it wasn’t appropriate to wear the colors I loved wearing. I was mostly wearing nudes, light pinks, etc., and I felt like most of my readers would not care to see those colors. To add another layer – I was working really long hours. I was so burnt out all the time. I never felt like sitting down, editing photos, comparing colors, and posting.

Everything was neglected, everything suffered.  My nails were/are a ragged-cuticle ridden mess. My collection went from being meticulously organized, to just a bunch of nail polish, separating from neglect, sitting in the helmers. I stopped having color recall, I started forgetting color names, collection names, brand names, forgetting actual colors, forgetting how to describe them – what words to use. Every time I tried blogging, I would feel so overwhelmed by the prospect that I would give up. At some point, my computer met with the blue screen of death and I lost all my backlogged photos, my stash spreadsheet, and everything related to my blog. Taking that as a sign, I finally decided that I wouldn’t be able to blog anymore. My lighting system came down and my camera went in my closet. That was about two years ago.

The nail polish world has changed so much since I went into a permanent hiatus. Before, there were only a handful of good blogs – now there seems to be an infinite universe of them. Each more impressive than the last! And the recently released colors and collections are SO amazing (OPI Pirates of the Caribbean, whooooat…).

Even though I consider those to be positive changes – it also contributed to my decision to stop blogging. Once my life settled down, work became less hectic, and I started having more free time – the desire to start blogging again slowly began to build up. But I felt like I had nothing to add to the conversation because of the sheer number of blogs covering everything nail polish related. On one level the abundance of nail blogs gave me great joy, especially because I wasn’t very well received when I started this site. And the extent of the production and availability of new unique colors, glitters, holos, crackles, duochromes, multichromes, etc., makes me I feel like all the bloggers finally had an effect on the market – no more collections with 6 reds and maybe 1 unique color, or so it seems. But on another level – I felt that I couldn’t compete. And by the time I was in a position to blog again – I was 9 katrillion collections behind. How could I ever catch up?

 

So, why am I recounting this tale of woe (assuming there is a “you” reading all this)?

Those were my feelings until a few weeks ago when my husband (oh yea, I’m married now too) surprised me by coming home with the OPI NYC Ballet Minis. (This is something he will surely live to regret doing). I had not purchased a bottle of nail polish for myself in well over a year. And, using My Pointe Exactly, I did my nails at home for the first time in months. My passion was totally rekindled. Suddenly, I realized, I’m practicing a different type of law now, I go to court once in a blue moon – I have more freedom with my nails. It occurred to me that I should start over.

I’m re-launching my site, this time for real. One subcategory of nail polish that does not seem to be well covered is work appropriate colors. So I think that will be my beat– as a person who is perpetually stuck in professional polish purgatory, I’m constantly on the lookout for unique colors that will be appropriate in a professional setting. Of course, there will be forays into the more adventurous too (in hopes that the site won’t be too boring for those who don’t suffer from the same polish restrictions that I do.)

With that said, I’m finally going to go through my entire collection – finally wear my hundreds of untrieds. I’m going to catalogue, organize, shake, and hopefully, through this process, begin to remember all my beloved polishes and become acquainted with everything new and exciting. The point is – I’m going to post about the colors I love and that I’m wearing and hopefully it will be worth reading. Most importantly, I’m not going to let this become an overwhelming unpaid job again – this is my hobby. I want to do it because I love it.

I’m so excited to be back! I’m kicking things off tomorrow with an oldie but goodie – stay tuned! : )

 

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Hiatus: Real Life Gets in the Way of Blogging

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009

Dearest Friends & Readers,

As many of you know, I’m about to make the transition from academia to real life. Just in the past 5 days, I have graduated, moved all my junk to a new place (still haven’t unpacked, ugh), and started a new a job all while also studying for the bar exam. Unfortunately, because I have to work full time while I’m studying for the bar, I have to stop doing all the things I love. Sadly, nail polish and blogging will have to go on the back burner until after the exam. Regular posting will resume around August 3rd – and I have a toooon of cool stuff to show you guys including all the spring and summer collections from China Glaze, Essie, OPI, Zoya, Barielle Shades and Color Club that I haven’t posted yet and also a ton of polish from Adoree, Orgasm Cosmetics, Eyeko, and many others. I know my blog has been very slow for about a month now and I do apologize, the last semester of law school was surprisingly difficult and this whole transition thing is extremely time consuming. I really hope you guys will stick with me through this tough period. : )

Much Love,

Stephanie

P.S. I wore Chanel Gold Fiction to my graduation as per one of your suggestions. Also, the stash survived the move with no casualties and I absolutely LOVE my new job. I have to say, it’s really weird to have my own office… I’ll even have my own secretary soon. Aaahhhh. I just can’t get used to it. haha. I haven’t had a chance to reply to emails or comments but I will try to get to it as soon as I have some free time. Bear with me!

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