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Category Archives: nail art

Mani Monday – Pink and Red Hearts

I have been playing around with a new kit. The Alexa Edit from Nails Inc came out a while ago but I have only just got around to testing the products out and am planning a more in-depth blog post on it soon.

The first combo I tried was this delicate pastel pink with mini red hearts.

The pink is part of the Cashmere range – named Cashmere Pink – and has a lovely, slightly textured and pearlescent finish. It is really well-pigmented and one that I will definitely use again.

I have had really mixed experiences with the next type of product with many of the nail decals not sitting flush to the nail meaning they ping off and last about a day. However, I was really impressed with these little red hearts. They were small enough which meant they didn’t stick up on the nail and both the nail varnish and all 10 of the hearts lasted a whole week which is a big thumbs up from me.

This was a very pretty manicure and given the quality of both Nails Inc products, I look forward to using them both again.

Mani Monday – Rainbow Dots

I really love this manicure! It is subtle yet fun and really easy to do.

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I began with a nude base colour – I chose Ciate’s Cookies & Cream which is a lovely grey-taupe shade.

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Next, with a dotting pen (which you can pick up for about a pound on ebay), I added a little dot just above my cuticle in a range of different colour.

From the thumb to the little finger I wore: MUA’s Bold Blue, ELF’s Lilac, 17’s Miami, Natural Collection’s Antique Coral and Ciate’s Big Yellow Taxi.

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I love the effect a little dot of colour can give and I want to experiment more with different shades.

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Mani Monday – Disco Nails

I always feel good on Monday nights, like I’ve got the toughest day of the week out of the way. I did struggle to get up this morning but once I was in the shower, I felt back in my usual routine. I went to Pilates for the first time in a few weeks today and although I will ache tomorrow, it felt really good to stretch and move again. Next step, back to the gym!

I am currently having a good sort out of all my make-up and in my nail art box (yes, I have a box for this!) I rediscovered these jazzy nail wraps. They are from Avon in the design Check You Out.

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I like the fact that you can still see the nail underneath the wraps and the colours look great too. I’m not sure whether these are losing their effectiveness as they only stayed on for a few days this time but they still looked fab while they lasted. x

Mani Monday – New Year’s Nails

It’s my last day off before work starts again tomorrow so I am trying to get on top of things and do all the work I had planned to do over these few weeks off. I have really enjoyed getting back into blogging again recently and hope I manage to keep it up when school starts to take over again! I’m aiming for 3-4 posts a week which I think I will be able to do – a mixture of foodie, beauty, travel and lifestyle pieces.

My first nail post of the year is the manicure I wore for New Year’s Eve. It’s not a particularly glitzy look but one I think turned out well.

I used a Seventeen Supreme Shine nail colour in the shade Miami. This claims to last 10 days and it is actually very longwearing. I also used some Elegant Touch nail wraps in Kaleidoscope on two nails to add a bit of interest. These nail wraps are great and have a cool geometric design with tiny diamantes on.

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Mani Monday – Navy and Gold

I have now finished work for Christmas so am feeling relaxed and eating my body weight in mince pies and party food on a daily basis!

I really love this week’s manicure. I think the combination of navy and gold is lovely and the dusting of glitter makes the nails looks really Christmassy.

I started with a base coat of Essie’s Style Cartel, my favourite navy blue. I looked for ages to find this shade and every time I wear it I’m reminded of how much I like it.

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The glitter is a Nails Inc bottle in Chelsea Embankment. I wasn’t prepared for how packed with glitter this formula was so needed a very light touch to get this effect. I basically packed glitter on around the cuticle, gradually fading out how much I used as I reached halfway along the nail. As always, some nails look a bit better than others but I am really pleased with the overall effect.

Mani Monday – Holly Nails

I was desperate to have Christmas nails for the last week of term as I enjoy a Christmas dinner with my class followed by a festive curry with my colleagues. I bought some holly wreath nail stickers which were a really quick and easy way to add a festive twist.

I went for a silvery, pearl-white base using Essie’s Cabana Boy. I love this colour and it always looks so clean and fresh.

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On each nail I added a sticker which has holly leaves and berries on with a layer of Seche Vite to seal the look. I think they are subtle enough to not look too over-the-top yet still a little special and fitting for the time of year.

Mani Monday – Pink and Leopard Print

This was a very short-lived manicure, lasting about an hour! I wanted to use these leopard print nail wraps that I picked up from the Boohoo website and I paired them with Eternal Optimist by Essie, a pretty, creamy rose colour.

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The nail wraps seemed quite thin and flimsy when I was cutting them to size and they started to pucker almost as soon as I applied them. Within an hour, the edges were peeling backwards then one of them slid off my nail completely.

I have to say that I have had really bad experiences with Boohoo. The quality of their things seems so poor and cheap and these nail wraps were no different.

Luckily, I got a few pics but then repainted them all in the pink shade.

Mani Monday – Nude and Navy

After weeks of nursing my broken nails back to a decent length and condition, I can finally start painting them again. It probably did me good to have a break from weekly manicures to enjoy an overload of nail treatments but I’m also excited for a bit of colour again.

One of my favourite podcasts (which is coming back for a second series soon) is Lena Dunham’s ‘Women Of The Hour’, a feminist chat with a variety of women on issues such as friendship, work and body image. On her thumbnail, Lena has a really cool manicure so I decided to try and replicate it this week.

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My Mum has just come back from Spain and as well as a bottle of tequila, she bought me a new nude nail varnish from a Spanish pharmacy which I was keen to try out. I’m not sure of the brand or colour, but I really like the colour and the brush was so thick it made it really easy to apply.

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After two coats of the nail varnish, I grabbed this navy shade by ELF and a nail dotter to create a polka dot at the centre of each nail bed.

This is a very simple yet effective manicure that I am keen to try again with different colours.

 

Sunday Summary #43

Life

I have one more week of term left which means a mad rush to fit everything in then we are off to Boston! If you are a regular reader of this blog then you will know my love for visiting America. I haven’t been to Boston before so am planning to fit in as much as possible and have spent a chunk of today booking us in for various things and, of course, finding the best place for East Coast chowder and lobster rolls!

Ian and I have been enjoying Scandi dramas a lot lately. We are watching The Bridge and also watched the film ‘The Keeper of Lost Causes’ last night which was great…any other recommendations?

Food

I’m a real grazer so always looking for new snacks, especially healthy ones. Now these aren’t perfect but they are a bit better for you than crisps and taste delicious.

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We had a really disappointing dinner out this week at the newly renovated Dandy Lion in Bradford on Avon. I don’t like to bash local businesses but this was slow service, coupled with a really bad burger and I won’t be revisiting to make the same mistake twice.

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Fashion

I bought a new pair of boots for this Autumn/ Winter. These black leather ankle boot have  cool tassle on side to add a bit of detail and look good with jeans or tights and a dress.

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There are so many nice knitted jumpers around at the moment and I opted for this leopard print number from H&M. it is heavy enough to keep you warm, has a nice zip detail at the back and is a cool, loose boxy shape so looks great with a pair of black skinny jeans…I love it!

Beauty

My nails are finally getting back to a decent length and condition so I decided to indulge in a bit of nail art. I spotted this nude and navy spotted look on Lena Dunham and am really pleased with how they turned out.

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Finally, I have been using this Lancome duo this week and both are lovely. The serum is quite a wet formula but feels very hydrating. The moisturiser however is the real star. I think it is aimed at slightly more mature skin than mine but it leaves my face feeling as smooth as if I had applied a primer and my foundation sits well on it. I may keep an eye open for this at Duty Free next week…

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My Nail Varnish Collection

One of my jobs this summer was to have a thorough sort through of my vast collection of nail varnishes. Now, before we go any further, I must admit that I have somewhat of a problem when it comes to buying bottles of polish. I cannot pass an Essie counter without swooning and when I couldn’t close the lid on the hamper I keep my bottles in (yes, I have a nail varnish hamper!) I knew I had to have a good sort out.

Nail varnish doesn’t last forever and I knew I needed to get rid of some that had gone a bit gloopy and try to streamline my collection a bit.

So, here was my collection in all its glory (don’t judge!)…

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I decided I needed a plan of attack so I sorted the bottles into reds, purples, greens, nudes, bright pinks, black and greys, blues and glitters.

Then it was a case of swatching every shade to check the formula was still good and that I really loved the shade. I managed to get rid of 40 bottles of nail varnish which I will pass onto my mum and friends.

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Here are the bottles that made the cut:

The Reds

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You cannot beat a classic red and I think these bottles cover everything from deep, vampy reds to bright orange-tinged corals. Sadly the bottle of Barry M red nail varnish I wore on our wedding day had gone a bit gloopy so I am allowing a temporary lifting of my nail varnish spending ban to repurchase it.

The Greens

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I managed to cut these down to my absolute favourites – I had so many pastel mint greens. The Barry M one on the bottom row is a concrete-effect textured one that I like to wear a lot.

The Purples

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I don’t feel like I wear purple that much on my nails so I was a bit surprised to see how many I had! The two Revlon shades on the top row are part of the Chroma Chameleon range and are really stunning shades.

The Bright Pinks

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I had about 5 shades the exact same tone of pink so I picked my favourite formulas here. The Seventeen bottle on the top row is a 10-day wear nail varnish and is really long-lasting.

The Black and Greys

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Again, I was surprised I had 7 black nail varnishes (a throwback to my goth days! Ha) so only kept the ones I love. I think the Chanel nail varnish is the most expensive one in my collection. I also love the pale grey Ciate bottles on the bottom row.

The Blues

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I was on a search for the perfect navy blue nail varnish for years so had quite a few in my stash. I love the bright blue from Nails Inc on the top row and it was a freebie I got with some toothpaste years ago!

The Nudes

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It seems that a nude shade is my weakness as I had loads to sort through. I just think a peachy nude shade looks so clean on the nails, especially if you don’t feel comfortable wearing bright colours. My all-time favourite nail varnish from Nails Inc, Porchester Square, is  in the top right of the picture…I actually had 3 bottle of it!

The Glitters

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For someone who prefers to wear glittery nail varnish around Christmas, I have managed to collect quite a few bottles. I have had the Ciate advent calendar for the past few years and that always contains a fair selection of glitters. Some of these are just top coats whereas others are an actual glittery nail varnish. My absolute favourite nail varnish in my whole collection is in here: the rose gold OPI shade on the 3rd row.

The Nail Toppers

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I do like my nail art and I had 10 bottles of Ciate nail toppers ranging from mini pearls to sequins to glitter. Sadly, I decided to get rid of all the loose glitters. While they look amazing on the nail, they are just too fiddly and no matter how careful I am, I end up with glitter absolutely everywhere!

So, apart from the odd bottle I have hanging around the house, this is my new pared-down nail varnish collection. I know I still have way more than I need but everyone has a vice and this happens to be mine. The other good news is that I can now close my hamper!

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