Thursday, 31 March 2011

Kinetics Yes! + W7 Earthquake Silver

Crackle polish? I'm SO over it. Ya think?

Except when it covers only a fraction of the nail. I've tried crackle tips and crackle diagonals (you try saying it) but crackle halves is definitely my favourite.

To crackle or not to crackle?

Favourite crackle colour and brand? Or are you a crackle-hatah?


Wednesday, 30 March 2011

W7 Cosmic Purple - a V mani

First time I've done this. I think it's uneven because the glitter is lumpy bumpy and allows leakage beneath the sticky tape. So next time I'll do it over a smooth polish. I think that should work. And I didn't realise I had slapped it so comprehensively over the cuticles but I was so exhilarated by the sheer blingitude of the whole shebang that I snapped it straight off and didn't think to check the photos too closely.

The silver is Diamond Cosmetics Silver Brocade which covers the glitter very effectively.

Oh, and the cheapo W7 polish was much admired by the Illamasqua girl in Birmingham Selfridges!

I know it's not a Mad Hatter dupe but it can still give OPI glitters a run for their money. For £3.98 or less it ain't so shabby.


Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Kinetics Yes!

Another superlative polish from Kinetics. Find them on ebay. This is 2 coats (I put a 3rd coat on the index finger and, as you can see, it wasn't necessary) and dries satin but I added a TC. I have no idea what colour this is. Pink? Maybe a little lighter IRL than in my photo. It's another stunner. That makes 3 out of 3 by this brand. 100% satisfaction record with one polish to go and the next one looks very SPESHULLLL in the bottle!! I have my eye on plenty more.

This photo was taken in sun.

Know any dupes for this? Or anything like it?


Monday, 28 March 2011

W7 Earthquake Silver + Kinetics Divine

Google 'Xtras online' for the e-tailer. This is way worth having for £3.98. I kid you not.

No point hitting you with the verbiage today. That's all you need to know.

Except that some people (me) just don't know when to stop.....


Sunday, 27 March 2011

Nails Inc Captivating Selfridges + W7 Earthquake White

We have here a crackle polish costing £3.98 including the ol' P&P. I think this makes a pretty mani. Delicate, feminine, pretty. SOOOOOOOO not adjectives that apply to me! for the W7. I have turned up my nose at W7 for many a long year but now I've tried 'em I LOVE them. W7 do a crackle black and a silver. The silver will be making a guest appearance here tomorrow. Why was I so snooty about W7? They are cheap and they look like they are ripping-off OPI. I have now decided that's a good thing. Teaches me not to be so narrow-minded.

This shows the Nails Inc. Must be an ancient limited edition polish as I've only seen it on one website. This is seriously sweet. 'Captivating Selfridges'. What's that all about? IS Selfridges particularly captivating? If I could be bothered to troll down to the smoke I wouldn't be making Selfridges a must-see. That I DO know. Really like this polish. Shows a little warm in the picture - I'd say it's paler IRL. Beautiful consistency. I thought it would be a streaky mess but went on with ease. 3 coats for full opacity but it was so good to work with.


Saturday, 26 March 2011

Kinetics Divine - an oustanding success!

The ebay-tailer for Kinetics is

Or just search for 'Kinetics nail' in ebay. £5.50 per polish including P&P. I got good comments about Coral Sea and Divine is even better. This is 2/3 coats and I made a complete mess of my index finger by splodging it against something but I just painted over and you simply cannot tell! Result.

Plus the customer service is superb. This brand is a great new find for me. I have two more to show you and I will be ordering others. 

I would say this is a glass-fleck. It is simply beautiful.

It reminds me of something - OPI/Zoya? - that is way more expensive and also less readily available. I don't need to do the research on any dupes because I have THIS!

Very happy bunny.


Friday, 25 March 2011

'Keep that mani going' challenge Day 2

Day 1 Kinetics Coral Sea + Bourjois Rose Corset
Day 2 Boots 17 Nail Xtras  Crackle Top Coat tips

I used tip guides but I should have positioned them diagonally across the nail. Need to think of a Day 3. Any ideas? For a cack-handed clumsykins?


Thursday, 24 March 2011

Barry M 03 Lip Lacquer Crayon

Perhaps I was a satsuma or a tangerine in a former life. Everything on my list these days cosmetics-wise is orange/coral.

This lip lacquer is a lot more sheer than the 01. A little disappointing. But I kept at it until I was reasonably satisfied. 01 had raised my hopes perhaps a little too high. This is still pretty though. I am so unused to seeing this kind of colour on my lips. Takes some getting used to. Need to get some OCC Lip Tars in orange or coral. Believe me, I'm looking! 'Grandma' is a good colour.

Reincarnation. I desperately hope there is no such thing. I fear death far more when I contemplate the prospect of returning - in whatever guise. Some lives are seemingly so intolerable and I have been so blessed in this life that I have a terror of being reincarnated as ...well, I have to be one the most privileged people on the planet so virtually any other life would represent a fall from grace. And if it's dependent on karma then I'm by no means sure I've been as well-behaved as I should have been to ensure progress in subsequent lives. Gloomy. Sorry.

Do you discount it completely? What are your views?


Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Boots 17 Nail Xtras Crackle Top Coat

Sorry about the dry skin.
This is part of a 'challenge' I decided I was undertaking i.e. how many days can you go without removing your polish and starting again? Found this in Boots yesterday. £3.98. Put on a thick layer - too thick as I prefer more of the base polish to be visible but I know better for next time.

Day 1 CG Life Preserver
Day 2 mattify the tips
Day 3 add Nubar 2010
Day 4 add crackle top coat
Day 5 ? probably get rid...

I was very pleased with myself until I looked at the shots I took today.  Obviously blown up like this you can see that it's not so smart but normal-size it's perfectly acceptable. I don't always have the time or the inclination any longer to change my polish every day so I am doing this kind of thing more and more.

What do you think is the maximum time you can adapt a mani before having to ditch it?


Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Kinetics Coral Sea + Bourjois Rose Corset

The accent finger is Bourjois. See below.
Both polishes are superb. This is the only Kinetics I have and the ebay-tailer is no longer listing them so I am stuffed. 2 coats over my worst (RH) nails.Like the proverbial butter.

Got Coral Sea because I'd seen it elsewhere.

In a massively coral-loving mood at the moment. The Bourjois has been sitting in a basket for months now. I anticipated a streaky multi-coated mess as it's pale and pastel but it built up beautifully after 3 coats with no drama whatsoever.

Today I am happy with my nails. If you know anywhere in the UK that I can get Kinetics for less than £5.50 a pop then please share. It was worth every penny and I would pay more but any bargains are welcome...

I am crazy for coral/peach at present whereas normally they are shades that really don't appeal. Do you have any current fads or fancies?


Monday, 21 March 2011

Color Club Feel The Beat

My first Color Club. 2 coats. The index finger is mattified with another colour over half the nail but the other colour wasn't enough of a contrast so that was a fail. But this is one heck of a shiny, easy polish. Problems? Yes, tip shrinkage but I tried 2 new products under the CC so I may have to blame the chemical combination. And chipping after 2 days - may again be related to new Mavala ridge-filler (only one to be found in Boots).

Yes, I know it came out ages ago but I got this for £8.99 plus £2.49 P&P. Yes, that's right. Less than £11.50 all in!!! If you're in the US you can have NO IDEA what a bargain that is. Stuff generally is mega-expensive over here with nail polish no exception. I know Color Club is not a premium brand but it has a high reputation over here nonetheless and I have seen some great swatches. I couldn't pass this up at that price. Evidently I was not the only one. It's all sold out now (ebay) so no point giving you the link.

The Vitabase product (far right) is great too and makes a good base. I am now hunting for CC in a BIIIIIG way. Luckily they are now stocked by: This is a company I can recommend. The P&P is a bit steep but the polish prices are low so make sure you order plenty.

What Color Club can you recommend? (international readers)
Does Color Club interest you sufficiently to seek it out? (UK readers)


Sunday, 20 March 2011

China Glaze Life Preserver + matte tips

I am trying to keep away from the same old, same old US brands but I had a voucher and I picked up the set of minis from the Anchors Away collection. This is my favourite. Fabulous CG quality. Took 2 coats but you could maybe get away with one if you have good nails. Very impressed with the 17 matte coat. Makes a good contrast because LP is a decidedly glossy polish so this is a simple way to tart up a mani.

IRL the tips look much neater. But I always say that. And likewise my cuticles are much less scruffy. Still, in my head I'm 17 so what do I know....Perhaps I removed the tip guides too soon. The OH wanted to know why I had bits of paper stuck to my fingers so I had to show her. My explanation clearly wasn't enough. Proof was required.

I'm going to invest in some more Boots 17 because I think they may be good quality. Pity the bottles are so small. Why can't we have big Texas-type bottles over here - generous bottles. Why are our bottles the size of a piddling English village with no pub, school or Post Office?

Best bottle?
Or square ones like Misa and Color Club?
Models Own?

And advice needed on how long to leave tip guides or masking tape on the nail before removal, please.


Friday, 18 March 2011

Barry M 01 Scarlet Red Lip Lacquer Crayon

In a rush when I applied it (hence the patchiness at the centre) so..
  • Barry M therefore not expensive
  • Flows on easily
  • Thick 'point' and not scratchy
  • Feels soft but not too squidgy (ever so slightly squidgy but I'm highly squidgy-averse)
  • Bags of pigmentation
  • Easily available even in the retail black hole that is my town
  • I like the colour, I REALLY like the colour
  • There are only 5 from which to choose - bummer - and no plummy or purple ones - double bummer

What's with that pathetic "Ballet Pink" one, huh? Too girlie. 01 is on the right. I have seen swatches of 02 Cherry Red and that's a stunner also.

I fancy the middle one too - Mandarin. 

Give me a good reason NOT to buy at least one of these. Go on, I dare you. A couple of bloggers say these lip lacquers are too glittery for their taste and there is a slightly sparkly quality to this one but I am definitely not put off.


Thursday, 17 March 2011

W7 Cosmic Mauve and Nubar Vaso

I bought my first W7 polishes and I can report they are excellent. This is the least interesting. The other 2 are truly A MAY ZZING. Ebay W7 if you too live in the regions of shopping darkness and can't find it locally. My branch of Debs is charging £7.50 for these. Do they ever sell any? I hope not because that is a quite cynical rip-off.

The Nubar is also fab. It's the least popular of the Venetian Glass collection and the only one I have.  I am now desperate for the others. Everyone says Vaso is marketed as a glass-fleck but it's just (just?) a foil and therefore a disappointment. Well, I think it's both. So there. And not disappointing at all. Get your Nubar at      Very good service and fair prices.

One of my next posts is going to be about the ethics of spending. Not about getting a bargain or value for money or buying on credit (although that IS an ethical issue). But addressing my personal prejudices on purchasing and why they exist. And you may share them.  Or you may not.

Most of you weren't economically active during the apartheid South Africa years but here's a question.

If South Africa were still governed by the white elite would you be happy to buy South African fruit? There are/were all sorts of views on this. What's yours?

And one more as a poser - if you were offered fantastic and cheap goods (Manolos? Cartier?) you had reason to believe were stolen during a violent raid would you go ahead or turn away?

Happy thinking

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Boots 17 Nail Xtras Matte Top Coat

I even shocked myself with the generally lousy quality of my last post. Therefore attention was paid to the nails and some improvements made.

An extra coat of Illamasqua Viridian was added to each nail and then I put a matte top coat over one nail to give an accent. It's actually more matte IRL than the photo suggests. An easy way to add a bit of variety to a mani. I'm going to use it to do matte tips as well. Also simple. I hate matte polishes but a layer of matte TC over one nail I can tolerate.

I looked for a buffer in Boots but there was little choice and they were all made in China so that's a no-go. I did get a ridge-filler. Haven't used it yet. Likewise very little choice. My town is really sucky as regards cosmetics availability. Oh, got a great Barry M lip crayon. I want to show you that soon.

Should I draw a red circle on my nose on Friday for Comic Relief? Just nose or nose and cheeks?

Such a dilemma....


Illamasqua Viridian ombre + a total disaster

Here it is in all its hideousness. No point in tarting it up.

And how the nightmare was wrought.
It was NOT a good idea to franken with the myface polish because it was thick and streaky on its own so why did I think it would make a good base for adding Viridian? Because I'm a cheapskate, that's why. Thought I could use it for good. Who am I? Superman?

So - DON'T use rubbish polishes for frankens.
DON'T neglect the thorough blending of the 2 shades.
DON'T persist with it when it's obvious from the first nail that it's no ruddy good.

Such a shame as the Illamasqua is a lovely polish.

Two for just over a tenner from asos.  That's not a lot for such quality items. And I eff it up bigtime. Maybe I should try foils or something. Something FOOLPROOF for people like me who are fools. *grump grump*

Off to Boots to see if they have the new Barry M crackles in stock. And get a nail buffer.


Sunday, 13 March 2011

Sally Hansen Super Frost Platinum + more lacy tips

Keep looking for a shimmery white that covers in fewer than half a dozen coats. This could be it. Platinum thingummy by SH.

Creme polishes are no ruddy use on my nails any more. Can someone PLEASE recommend a ridge-filler? I'm getting desperate now.

Now, I realise this would be better with a black base and white or silver tips and I will do that when Models Own bring out their range of crackle polishes. I wasn't going to post the MO promo pic because who needs it all over again for the umpteenth time? BUT I decided I would because I could then refer to the actual shades and say I shall definitely get the silver and white. I'm not a fan of coloured crackles though. Maybe the yellow may prove alluring but I shall wait for swatches. The OPI and China Glaze are too expensive over here so they can take a running jump.

To conclude:
  • Do you know of a heavy-duty ridge-filler?
  • Will you get any of the above?
  • Do you too find the Models Own caps wide and unwieldy and a s0d to work with?

Saturday, 12 March 2011

Coral ombre - or whatever it's called...

I felt like a bit of coral but it's fairly boring so I did 5.
They are:

Missguided Misschievous *
Nails Inc Drury Lane *
Rimmel Apricot Punch
Jessica My Cabana Boy
Rimmel Sunrise
* first time I've used them

3 coats of each to greater or lesser effect...

  • The Missguided is a tad red in some lights - certainly the best coverage/quality except maybe Sunrise which is a bit frosty/shimmery so not exactly comparable
  • The cremes I'd used before had gone gloopy - boo - I don't like gloopy
  • They all look closer on the nail than in the bottle - weird - so it didn't turn out as expected
  • The Jessica turned out neon and matte (not as I had remembered it)

I had to slather serum (hair serum) over my hands to make any photo even remotely acceptable. First off I used the 'vignette' function in iPhoto to try to capture the colours whilst simultaneously disguising my sloughing-snakesin mitts. Yuk. I quite like the vignette feature. Can cover a multitude of sins. In dire need of Photoshop.

Doesn't coral come in lots of colours? So why do we call this soft-orange 'coral'? Anybody know anything about coral? The more you say it the odder it sounds as a word, I find.


Friday, 11 March 2011

Sort-of lacy effect...Barry M Nail Effects

Used tip guides and Barry M Nail Effects to spruce up the Rimmel Play Fast Camouflage and got this.
Just wait until I get hold of the new Models Own crackle polishes! Cue a gleeful rubbing of hands. All this from a woman who kinda resolved not to blog and sorta resolved not to buy any nail polish because it was taking time away from the nearest and dearest. I just can't help myself.

Keeping it short and sweet.


If you blog, how much of a compulsion/therapy is it for you? Do you NEED it? Do you really NEEEEEEEEEEEEED it?

Thursday, 10 March 2011

Misa High Waist Hue + Nubar 2010

I love Misa and I love this particular nude.
My yukky cuticles I cannot love. Not even a mother could love my cuticles.
"Maybe I didn't love them quite as good as I should have....." (Pet Shop Boys version for me, please).

Nubar 2010 is just another of those GOSH Rainbow/Sally Hansen HT polishes that lengthen the lifespan of a mani when you don't have a lot of time. That would be me then...Ideal.

Cue the cute animal pic... Why? Why not?


  • too cliched to be true
  • great performer
  • legend
  • sad
  • not my thaaaang

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Rimmel Play Fast Camouflage + Hello again...

Been moving my mother down from Shropshire to live in a new home two miles down the road from me. Busy.Wore a mani for a straight week. Priorities.

  • Focus is rubbish.
  • State of nails and skin likewise rubbish.
  • Polish is fantastic! 2 coats and one would probably do it.
Why, oh why, do companies discontinue some of their best-quality formulae and shades? Barking. Not as if Rimmel is a high-fashion label that has to be avant-garde...

On that topic I notice a couple of highly-desirable new collections out. Illamasqua Toxic Nature. I don't have enough reserves of hyperbole for that one. And BB Couture Touch of Greece (damn silly name but stunning colours).

And in closing:

A photograph of my grandson and my dog. I rather like the pouty pose. He was eating one of his beloved apples. Dog is naturally intent on fate of apple. He would gladly eat the scraps from his master's table/hand.

Personal photos on a nail blog?
  • Too much information. Yawn.
  • OK in moderation.
  • Nice to have a bit of personal background.
  • Other