Monday, April 30, 2012

OPI Number One Nemesis

awesome day today! i'm so happy i got to spend time with my friends today... it's unbelievable that soon i'll be living on the other side of the country. thank goodness for unlimited cell phone minutes! :D

the final review 2012 OPI Spider-Man review is Number One Nemesis. it's a light green metallic that leans towards being a foil... so beautiful! there are even multicolored shimmer particles to give added depth... it's amazing. the formula is good, a little thin, but workable in two medium coats.

one coat Seche Base, two coats NON, one coat Seche Vite.




this color is outstanding, i really felt like i had sheets of metal on my nails. this type of color is perfect for an evening out!

looking at the whole Spider-Man collection, there are certainly more hits than misses. my biggest disappointment is the lack if a really bright saturated red... and i'd have liked a much more saturated blue. my favorite polish of the collection is OPI Just Spotted The Lizard, although Shatter The Scales is a close second.

what did you all think of this collection? Happy Monday! Ria :)

Sunday, April 29, 2012

OPI Into The Night

today started with a thunderstorm... but luckily, that cleared off before our horseback ride! it was perfect riding weather because it was still cloudy and cool... lovely :)

today's polish from the 2012 OPI Spider-Man collection is Into The Night, a medium blue pearl with slight shimmers. since blue is my favorite nail polish color, i seem to hold them to a higher standard... and i'm disappointed in this one. it's almost opaque in two coats, but really needs number three to make it completely opaque. it has very slightly visible brushstrokes, they really aren't noticeable until you put your nail up to your eyeball! it's a dusty color and not one that's breaking any new ground... i just don't feel it fits with the Spider-Man theme. his costume has royal blue on it, while this is more of a blue jean. i've felt that way about a lot of colors from this collection... what do they have to do with Spider-Man?! and where's the bright red?? does anyone else feel that way?

one coat Seche Base, three coats INT, one coat Seche Vite.




my best friend and his boyfriend are coming to visit me tomorrow! i can't wait!! we've been attached at the brain pretty much since the day we met :D i hope you've all had a fantastic weekend! Ria :)



Saturday, April 28, 2012

OPI Your Web Or Mine?

today we went to Dock Dogs (check out their website http://www.dockdogs.com/)... it's a competition where dogs jump into swimming pools, it's SO cute! they have jumping distance, jumping height, and speed retrieve events... i can't get enough :) there were so many dogs there, not just ones who were competing... i'm telling you, i was in total doggie heaven!

today from the 2012 OPI Spider-Man collection we are checking out Your Web Or Mine?, a pink frost. it's not super brushstrokey, but they are visible. i do think the brushstrokes in this one are less visible than OPI Just Spotted The Lizard... but, this one lacks the awesome duochrome. great formula, totally opaque at two coats. it's a beautiful color and since i do love a frost, i will be sporting this one again for sure!

one coat Seche Base, two coats YWOM?, one coat Seche Vite.




the actual color of this polish is a bit more dusty salmonish than my camera wanted to capture... it's very pretty! anyone else out there still like to rock a frost? Ria :)

Friday, April 27, 2012

OPI Just Spotted The Lizard

i managed to spend the entire day wandering around the Gem Show that is here in Virginia Beach for the weekend! i bought a couple pendants... the most exciting thing was picking out a geode and getting it cut in half by a drop saw with an oiled blade... it was awesome! i was lucky enough to pick out one with lots of sparkly crystals inside :D the experience was very different from when i was a kid... the people selling them said to just take them home and hit them with a hammer. not only did it just shatter... there weren't even any crystals in it! such a bummer. the trick is to pick the lightest ones because they have the cavernous areas where crystals would be, not just solid rock. best seven bucks i've spent in a while! if you live near VB, the show is at the Convention Center... check out the show's website here to get a coupon for a dollar off admission, bringing the price down to just three bucks.

i decided to continue the 2012 OPI Spider-Man collection review with Just Spotted the Lizard, a gold and green duochrome. it's a really gorgeous gold that flashes to all sorts of colors of green; it also has a super subtle shimmer! the only thing that will turn some people off of this polish is the visible brushstrokes. however, because of the strong duochrome, the brushstrokes aren't very noticeable. this polish is being touted as a dupe for Chanel Peridot... i don't own that one, but please check out the post where the Polish Insomniac compares them here!

one coat Seche Base, two coats JSTL, one coat Seche Vite.




as gorgeous as this polish is, i still think the best part is the name... it's just so cute! i hope you all have a fantastic weekend! Ria :)

Thursday, April 26, 2012

OPI Shatter The Scales

just got back from the ice cream social my apartment complex held tonight! free ice cream? i'm so there :)

i decided to put OPI Shatter The Scales over OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls... the contrast is really nice! this is the crackle offering from the 2012 Spider-Man collection. it's a really beautiful forest green with a lighter green shimmer. it cracks really nicely and i love the sparkles! i added two thick coats of Seche Vite to finish off... i think shatters look best with the thick nail effect.




my pointer finger looks a bit wonky because i put too much polish on it... and i then pushed it around a little bit to try and make it look more shattered... luckly it's not really noticeable :D the thick lines tinged with pink in the middle of the nail aren't actual polish cracks, just light reflections... have to have those super shiny nails! Ria :)

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls

it's been polishie two days :D finally took advantage of the Sally's buy two get one free on any polish sale... i got the 2012 Orly Feel The Vibe collection (so excited to use these neons!) and a few other assorted Orlys... yay!

My Boyfriend Sclaes Walls is today's offering from the 2012 OPI Spider-Man collection. it's a very greYed out white creme that is quite pigmented and opaque at two coats. a word of caution with the formula... it worked best for me when i had a large bead of polish on the brush and gently spread it out over the nail (using as few brushstrokes as possible). when i used too many brushstrokes, the polish got goopy and streaky... yuck. if you're scared to go for a complete 'white out' mani, this is a good medium toned white polish. basically, you've got the training wheels off the bike, but you're not ready for a handbrake! (who else went flying over the bike's handlebars when trying to learn to use the handbrake?)

i only used one coat of Seche Vite over MBSW and no base coat... i wanted to see just how pigmented it is... and i'm impressed!




if you're looking for a bright white, this isn't it... but it's a lovely shade and i'm glad to have it! who else likes to rock a white out mani?? Ria :)

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

OPI Call Me Gwen-Ever

went to Ulta today! i managed to really control myself and only bought the Zoya Sparkle collection, which works out perfectly for the buy two get one free promo because there are six polishes in the collection. i was super excited this morning to get a call from my local NEX telling me that the 2012 OPI Spider-Man collection had arrived... you can bet i threw clothes on and headed over there right away!

the first Spider-Man polish up for review is Call Me Gwen-Ever, a saturated coral creme. my first thought was... wow, that sure looks dirty on. it's not a pure coral, it has a strong red undertone with a slightly muddy quality about it. it makes for a very interesting color! the formula can't be faulted, two easy coats for full opacity.

one coat Seche Base, two coats CMG-E, one coat Seche Vite.




i have zero idea how this made it into a Spider-Man collection... and why the collection is missing a good red! i'd like to know what they were thinking when they decided on the colors... what do you guys think? is this color a good fit? should they have added a bright red? 

one other thing, i've decided to change the spelling for cream polishes over to creme... that is the spelling most polish bloggers and brands use. i will try and remember to spell is that way from here on... i don't know why i haven't before now! Ria :)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Nail Polish Survey!

today i'm going to take this survey that the lovely Kellie of Also Known As... had as one of her posts a couple years ago! see her answers here :)

How many polishes do you have in your stash?
hmmmm... somewhere between 300-400 probably! but i would think it's much closer to 300.

Which brand do you own the most of?
OPI wins by a landslide... i just started collecting other brands this year... so probably about 200 of my collection is OPI alone!

What colors do you own the most of?
i have all sorts of shades and finishes in pink.

Do you have a color/texture you do not own?
i don't have any glitters that contain different shapes... i did have one of the Nicole by OPI heart polishes, but the hearts didn't want to come out, so i got frustrated and gave it away.

What's the one polish you always pick up to lift your spirits?
the color isn't important, a full glitter mani always makes me smile!

What polish do you keep looking at and wondering why you haven't gotten rid of it yet?
i have a drawer with a few polishes with bad formulas that i've found dupes for... i keep my backups and supplies in the same drawer, so whenever i open it i have a slight UGH moment :)

Franken any? or I'm nervous to try it?
no, i've never tried... but i might one of these days!

Do you franken for new/original polish ideas or franken for polish you won't be able to own?
i think both reasons are great!

Go-to Base Coat?
Seche Base.

Go-to Top Coat?
Seche Vite.

What's your sexiest polish?
good question! you can't go wrong with OPI Midnight In Moscow... love a touch of vamp!

Nail Design:

Stamping vs Free Hand?
i've never even posted any of my freehand attempts... i'm not good at it! i've never tried stamping because i hate to fuss with things, and there are way too many steps involved in stamping... lame, i know.

Bling me, baby? or No bling for me, please!
i LOVE when other ladies use rhinestones... i generally don't on myself because, sadly, i'm a picker and they will be gone within an hour :(

I consider my nails basically nekkid if they don' t have some kind of design?
no... but i can't bear to see them without polish!

My favorite plate/tool/technique?
i love looking at all types of nail art, it's so beautiful and creative... i wish i could do it! when i do try things, i use dotting tools.

What I haven't tried and want to within the month?
i'm going to try just buffing my nails smooth and using no base or topcoat with a holo polish!

Purchase/Lemmings:

The one elusive polish you want and can't seem to get?
like most people, i'd love the original OPI My Private Jet... i have two different later incarnations, but the real deal is awe inspiring! i also desperately want Nail-Venturous Floam... it's so cool! hopefully, i'll get my grubby paws on it one day :)

What was the last nail related thing you bought?
last week i bought a few polishes from Kmart... planning to hit Ulta this week! can't wait to take advantage of the buy two get one free promo.

How many nail related hauls have you bought in the last 7 days (on-line/in-person)?
hmmm, i was good last week! just the one!

If you've ever been on a no-buy, how long did it last? Is that what you planned?
nope, i'm an instant gratification kind of girl :)

(and one question to grow on) Hobby? Addiction? Compulsion? Passing Fancy? Love?
i would say that's it's a love that turned into a buying compulsion and addiction... that i've redirected into a hobby (but, let's face it, it's still an addiction!). that covers most of the bases!

i would love to read other people's answers, if you've taken or want to take this survey, please post your link to it in the comments! Ria :)

Sunday, April 22, 2012

OPI Gone Gonzo!

i can't believe it had to rain this morning! (as we say in the South, it was a real gully washer) so i missed out on horseback riding today. i guess that's better than being out riding and getting caught in a downpour! my dog Jemima and i both really dislike being wet... since she's an inside dog, she rarely needs a bath... thank goodness, because she's really a nightmare in the tub! :)

i decided to recycle yesterday's mani (China Glaze Blue Iguana) and add a glitter topcoat. OPI Gone Gonzo! looks perfect over  it! this glitter is very simple, comprised only of small light blue glitter and scattered large silver hex glitter pieces. over a blue base, it looked opaque in two thick coats! it dries fairly smooth, so i didn't even add a finishing topcoat over it. it does have a slight texture to it, so if you like your nails really smooth i would definitely go ahead with Seche Vite! i can't believe how much it sparkles inside on such a dreary day... which means it's crazy beautiful out in the sun!




the blue glitter is richer color than the camera could capture, it's really lovely! and the name is too cute... one of my favorite shows when i was little was Muppet Babies... did any of you watch that? Ria :)

Saturday, April 21, 2012

China Glaze Blue Iguana

my husband and i just got home from an overnight road trip... feels so good to be home! what can i say, i'm a homebody :) we went to visit his family since we'll be moving across the country for a couple years, i'm so glad we could work in one last trip to get together with everyone!

we're checking out China Glaze Blue Iguana today... i LOVE this one! it's a tealy blue metallic duochrome with a slight pink flash. it's similar to Nicole by OPI You're S-Teal The One... but way better, especially in terms of formula. Blue Iguana is opaque in two medium-thick coats and super shimmery in the sunshine! the pink flash is pretty shy, it's more visible in the bottle than on the nail... but i think it adds to the richness of the overall color. the really dark pink on the bottle is actually just a reflection... it would be AWESOME to find a polish with a duochrome like that! if you know of one, let me know!

one coat Seche Base, two coats BI, one coat Seche Vite.




i think i've definitely found my replacement for You're S-Teal The One! Ria :)

Friday, April 20, 2012

Essie Steel-ing The Scene

the restaurant we had lunch at today is next to a K-mart, so of course i had to go in and check the clearance polish! they had two Sally Hansens i didn't have and Rimmel is buy one get one 50% off this week, so i got two of those... they have a much bigger selection of Rimmel polish than i've seen anywhere else. hooray for discounts! :D

the polish we are looking at today is Essie Steel-ing The Scene. it's a champagne frost... and it is VERY frosty. the formula is okay, it's opaque in two coats but it does dry super streaky. unless you're a huge frost lover, i would say skip this one... i'm just not in a frosty mood today, i guess, because i usually dig frosts! when you are outside the brushstrokes are much less noticeable and a subtle shimmer appears... i wish the camera had picked up on the shimmer... too bad you can't be permanently outside while wearing this one!

two coats STS, one coat Seche Vite.




the more i keep looking at my nails the more i seem to be liking this one... am i talking myself into it? Happy Friday!! Ria :)

Thursday, April 19, 2012

China Glaze Lemon Fizz vs. OPI Banana Bandanna

i got woken up with really bad news this morning... it's just not a good start to your day! i'm forcing myself to get moving and accomplish things because, obviously, sitting around feeling sorry for myself isn't going to fix any problems. here's to a happy weekend!

 i haven't done a comparison post in a long time, so i decided to rectify that today! yellow creams is the name of the game and we are pitting China Glaze Lemon Fizz against OPI Banana Bandanna. 




China Glaze Lemon Fizz is the clear winner! it's a bright pastel (seems contradictory, but it's true!) yellow that is opaque in two coats. the formula is super easy to work with and doesn't have any of the streakiness that generally plagues yellows. China Glaze hit it out of the park with this one!

OPI Banana Bandanna is an okay polish. it's still not quite opaque at three coats and the formula is pretty runny. the good news is that it didn't try to bubble, so you could potentially pack on the coats until it became opaque. after i added topcoat, the polish smoothed out to be *almost* opaque, which is why you can't really see the nail line in the swatchie! the color is slightly darker than LF and seriously reminds me of gloopy egg yolk. 

both polishes are over one coat of Seche Base and under one coat of Seche Vite!




the color difference is truly quite subtle, when they are next to each other it simply looks like BB is the dirtier version of LF. if you have been on the hunt for a light yellow, i highly recommend China Glaze Lemon Fizz! Ria :)


Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Sally Hansen complete Salon Manicure Red Zin

whew, we just ate at Texas Roadhouse and i am STUFFED. having a friend come in to town is a great excuse to hit up the steakhouse :)

today's polish is unlike anything else i own... Sally Hansen complete Salon Manicure Red Zin. the color alone is unusual, it's a deep merlot red... i know this sounds incredibly gross, but it looks a lot like coagulated blood! (ewww, right?) adding to the blood look is the fact that Red Zin is a jelly... which is the polish finish i have the fewest of. however, i don't even have a cream close to this color! it really changes depending on the lighting, from a true merlot wine to *almost* a chocolate brown. the formula is good for a jelly, full opacity at three coats! it dried shiny, but i, of course, added on a coat of Seche Vite.

one coat Seche Base, three coats RZ, one coat Seche Vite.




i hope you're all having a great week! Ria :)

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Nicole by OPI My Lifesaver

my nerves are a little bit shattered by this cross country move! it seems like nothing is going smoothly, the housing situation is the biggest nail biter. i keep finding more and more things that aren't proceeding along as planned! i'm going to be so happy when we're finally settled in our new place :)

we're checking out Nicole by OPI My Lifesaver today. it's a turquoise cream which is reminiscent of Tiffany blue, but with much greener undertones. somewhere between this polish and China Glaze For Audrey is where the actual Tiffany blue color falls! the formula on this is lovely, two easy coats to full opacity. there was a touch of streaking in the first coat, but all that was fixed by coat two.

one coat Seche Base, two coats My Lifesaver, one coat Seche Vite.




Nicole by OPI as a brand frustrates me... when their formulas are good, they are AWESOME... but there's not much in between. most of their polishes have thin, sheer formulas that are more like glazes than actual polish. i plan in the future to do individual brand reviews in my Basically... series, those will probably start after my move! Ria :)

Monday, April 16, 2012

Essie Super Bossa Nova

i hope everyone's week has gotten to a great start! i'm so glad the weather is warmer... hopefully, it'll stay that way :)

today's polish is Essie Super Bossa Nova, a saturated berry pink. it's a pearl with a slight amount of blueish shimmer. it has a lovely formula that is easy to control and opaque in two coats. my complaint with this polish is that it dries dull. it doesn't look matte, just dull... to me, it's just not pretty at all. it ate up the topcoat, i had to use three coats to get it nice and shiny... however, once you get it all shined up, it's gorgeous!

one coat Seche Base, two coats SBN, three coats Seche Vite.




this is one polish i'd probably be willing to let go of if i find an exact dupe simply because it doesn't dry shiny... i just have to have shiny nails! i love the way completely matte nails look, but when i try them on myself i just hate them... maybe i would just need to get used to seeing my nails that way. how you do guys feel about matte nails? Ria :)

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Julep Marisa

it hasn't rained for a while here in Virginia Beach, so it was DUSTY out while we were horseback riding. my friend had called yesterday to give me a heads up, i wore a bandana... never expecting to use it. big old clouds were rolling up from under the horses hooves, so i spent most of the ride looking like a bank robber... which was highly amusing to me!

today's polish is the other Julep i received in my 2012 Easter Mystery Box, Marisa. this is a gorgeous deep blue with a subtle shimmer... and it's opaque in one coat! the formula was a bit runny, i didn't really care for it... but since it's a one coater, i suppose it balances out a bit. it's a lovely color and something i certainly would have picked out for myself at a store, but it's not anything new or extraordinary... it's probably very dupable. if i find a dupe in my stash, i'll be sure to post it!

one coat Seche Base, one coat Marisa, two coats Seche Vite.




i used two coats of Seche Vite because i smudged my middle finger a bit... but it's absolutely stunning with the extra topcoat! more Seche Vite is seldom a bad thing! Ria :)

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Julep Brooke

hey, everyone! i hope you are all having a great weekend! mine is boring... because i have to pack for the move. packing and unpacking is such drudgery. however, i'm excited to get traveling because we have lots of fun places to visit AND i get to see one of my best friends that i haven't seen in years :D

today's polish is Julep Brooke, a multichromatic shimmer/glitter glaze. i was super disappointed at first that this is a layering polish, but over OPI Black Onyx it really comes alive! i'm looking forward to trying Brooke out over different colors. the camera did ZERO justice to this polish. the basic flash colors are purple and pink... but in different lighting and angles, you also see silver, gold, and even some lime green (the camera didn't pick that up at all!). the green is only visible when you hold your nails up and look over them (holding your eyes parallel to your hand... ugh, that doesn't make sense, does it?). it's very cool! i only used one coat, i can't imagine how many coats you'd need to get it opaque on its own... maybe the whole bottle?! this would also be very pretty over french tips! i love how those look but i never do them because i make a huge mess on my nails every single time. i've tried so many methods (including those guide stickers) and i still can't get them to look nice! *le sigh*

one coat Seche Base, two coats OPI Black Onyx, one coat Brooke, one coat Seche Vite.




if you haven't heard about the Fish Egg Friday craziness, check my post here! Ria :)

Friday, April 13, 2012

Fish Egg Friday!

this will be a double post day because i came across a blog movement that i feel strongly about. a brand named Ciate is allegedly working to trademark the term 'Caviar Manicure'... i don't believe that you should be able to do that, so i had to make my own 'Fish Egg Friday' post! please read The Polish-Aholics Fish Egg Friday post here to learn more about what started all these shenanigans. also, check out her fish egg tutorial, it's what i followed along with to create my mani!

luckily, my mom scrapbooks... so all i had to do was wander down the hall to her craft area to get these beads... i didn't even have to go to the store. these are just teensie tiny glass balls... watch out when you're using them, they like to run all over the place! this is my first ever attempt at putting 3D objects on my nails, so please excuse the messiness :)




here's a list of other bloggers particpating in Fish Egg Friday, make sure to add your link! Ria :)



2012 Julep Easter Mystery Box

i was so excited to get my Julep mystery box in the mail yesterday! Julep has promotions all the time, but i think i miss most of them because they are not promoted through email... and i don't 'hang out' on their Facebook page. the shtick with this was, you paid the usual $19.99 for the box (you had to use a coupon code off of... what else?... Facebook) and you got between $60-$200 or so worth of product. since you're basically buying a pig in a poke, i wasn't sure what to expect. here's what i got!




the packaging was adorable, and it happened to be in my blog colors! i just love pink and lime together, but i can't decorate with it much anymore because for some reason my husband just isn't into pink :D i was a bit disappointed because i received another bottle of Julep Melissa (but since i love it, i'm sure it'll get used) and a bottle of Basecoat (the words are combined on the bottle... it looks strange, right?)... i'll give it a try, but i wish i'd gotten the top coat instead! i'm super loyal to Seche base and top coat products... we'll see how Julep stacks up! i did get two polishes i don't have and a bottle of their Essential Cuticle Oil... i'm excited to try the oil because it doesn't have a nasty smell like a lot of others. reviews on everything will be coming up!

left to right :: Basecoat, Marisa, Cuticle Oil, Brooke (missing some because i did a mani before taking pictures!), Melissa



the extra treaties are candy and another nail file... the chocolates are tasty and i'll throw the file in my pocketbook for emergencies! did any of you take advantage of this deal? if you did, tell me what you got below OR if you blogged about it, please paste in the link! Ria :)

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Versatile Blogger Award!


i was so excited to find this award in my email this morning... talk about a great start to my day :) thank you SO much, Chrissy!! everyone, please go visit her blog...
*http://crashbeauty.blogspot.com/*







Rules:
  1. Nominate 15 fellow bloggers who are relatively new to blogging. 
  2. Let them know that you have nominated them. 
  3. Share 7 random facts about yourself. 
  4. Thank the bloggers that have nominated you. 
  5. Add the Versatile Blogger Award picture to your blog post.


*my 7 random facts*

1. i'm married to a United States naval officer.
2. i'm an animal fanatic!
3. i love collecting things... such as polish (well, duh!), dog/wolf/dolphin/horse statues, build a bears... the list goes on and on :)
4. i have a degree in psychology, but found my true calling in dog grooming.
5. i'm a Christian, spirituality is very important to me.
6. my mom lives with my husband and me, we all have so much fun!
7. between my husband and i, we have TEN siblings... remembering which days birthdays fall on can be really tough.


here are the 15 bloggers i tag with this award! i tried to find people who (like me) are just getting their blog going :)



1. Nat :: http://noholos.blogspot.com/
2. Victoria :: http://dennysdigits.blogspot.com/
3. Sara :: http://mylifeinpolish.blogspot.com/
4. Jill :: http://jilltasticnaildesign.blogspot.com/
5. Cathy :: http://needmorenails.blogspot.com.au/
6. Amanda :: http://www.noxnails.blogspot.com/
7. Beth :: http://z0mbi3killj0y.blogspot.com/
8. Rachael :: http://perkypolisher.blogspot.com/
9. Laurie :: http://lauriestrodesfunwithnails.blogspot.com/
10. Maly :: http://mywickedlittletown.blogspot.com/
11. Color The World With Polish :: http://loverly89.blogspot.com/
12. Sarah :: http://allthispolish.blogspot.com/
13. Alexis :: http://manglingmymanicure.blogspot.com/
14. Tonya :: http://31lacquers.blogspot.com/
15. Romance de la Luna, Luna :: http://romancedelalunatm.blogspot.com/


thank you again, Chrissy!

Ria :)

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

OPI Sand In My Suit

spent a good amount of time today planning the journey that will take us from the east coast to the west coast... it's so hard to decide exactly what to do! since we will be traveling with dogs and an assortment of aquarium bound critters we can't just roam around, which would be the ideal way to go! finding hotels that allow large dogs is key. i'm feeling a bit apprehensive, but it will all work out. it has to, right?

after wearing OPI Tickle My France-Y yesterday, i really wanted to do a mannequin hand mani matching my skin tone. the best color i've found is OPI Sand In My Suit (isn't that a happy thought?!), a super light beige pearl with subtle shimmers. the formula is okay, i used three coats to get it to *complete* opacity. it's pretty thin but not watery so it's easy to use. you definitely want to add a shiny topcoat with this one, without it you'll miss out on most of the shimmer! i am super, super fair, the only brand that makes foundation light enough for me is Lancome, so this won't be a mannequin hand polish for most people. however, this color is gorgeous! if you're going for a nude (rather than mannequin hand) look, this a great choice... i think it will be lovely on all skin tones! it's one i like to reach for because it literally goes with everything and is appropriate for any situation.

one coat Seche Base, three coats SIMS, one coat Seche Vite.




the name of this one makes me think of going to the beach as a kid and leaving with a bathing suit that was about ten pounds heavier due to all the sand stuck in it... even now, sand just does not want to stay on the beach! my dogs always get a good brushing after the beach because they have it stuck all throughout their fur. Happy Sandy Beach Thoughts! Ria :)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

OPI Tickle My France-Y

i'm hanging out watching the first season of Real Housewives of Atlanta... i've actually never seen these episodes before. surprising, since i'm a Real Housewives fanatic!

today's polish is OPI Tickle My France-Y... the name is pretty strange... however, the color is lovely! it's a light  taupe cream that is perfect for the giving the mannequin hand effect. i'm super pale, so this is more of a nude on me, rather than a true nail blanking effect. i only used two coats which left a very slight differentiation between the whites of my nails and the nail bed... however, it's not noticeable and this coverage is acceptable to me for a nude nail look! the formula itself is quite watery, make sure to take care not to let it pool into your cuticles.

one coat Seche Base, two coats TMF, one coat Seche Vite.




what do you all think of the mannequin hands trend? i am solidly in the LOVE IT! camp. Ria :)

Monday, April 9, 2012

Basically... Essie Disappearing Trick (conditioning cuticle remover)

this Basically... post checks out Essie's cuticle remover, Disappearing Trick. i saw it on someone else's blog (i wish i could remember who's!) and hemmed and hawed over trying it. i thought for sure something that dissolves cuticles would be really hard on my nails... which are already in bad shape from all the polish and acetone (not to mention they weren't that great before i started changing polish at least once a day!). i have been awed and amazed by this product! it does remove the excess cuticle easily AND conditions the cuticle left behind.

here's what the packaging looks like ::




the product itself ::




Disappearing Trick is super easy to use! you just squeeze out the gel all around your nail bed (the tapered tip on the tube helps get it where you want it) and massage it into your cuticle once you have enough product. after that you just need to wait for 15 seconds... make sure not to wait too long, that will make it much more difficult to properly remove the cuticle... and push your cuticles back with (what else?) a cuticle pusher (you can get a huge bag of them from Sally's quite cheap). the excess cuticle will just slough off onto the pusher, make sure you have a paper towel handy to wipe the pusher as you go. once you've finished, you can just wipe off the excess product with the same paper towel :) typing it out makes it seem much more involved than it is! the whole process takes under five minutes.

a close up of the tip ::




not only does this product clean up those scraggly, yucky cuticle slivers, it conditions all the skin around the nail bed! since it's not an oily product, you can immediately apply polish after using it... a huge bonus! not only that, it doesn't have a strong smell like most cuticle oils. 

i've seen this product everywhere that sells Essie products, i highly recommend picking it up! have any of you tried this? let me know what you think! Ria :)






Sunday, April 8, 2012

Revlon Mysterious

it was a such a lovely day to go horseback riding... the temperature was perfect. all the horses were feeling quite frisky, obviously they enjoy the fab weather, too! :D

today we're checking out Revlon Mysterious, a blue pearl. it's a stunning color, medium toned royal blue that is super saturated. the formula is good, it's completely opaque in two coats with minimal brushstrokes. my issues are that it wanted to bubble and it dried quite dull, so i used two coats of Seche Vite to give it that high shine look i drool over! you can see some of the bubbling in the swatchie... i'm not sure if it's the polish's fault or just the fact that it's so humid in my house.

one coat Seche Base, two coats Mysterious, two coats Seche Vite.




have any of you watched 'My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding'? i love it... the girls' dresses are beyond fabulous. my favorite one i've seen thus far was loaded with light pink tulle and had led lights with butterflies that actually moved! apparently, some of the dresses weigh over 300 pounds... i can't imagine wearing something that heavy... i don't know how they can even move! if you've seen the show, what do you think of those dresses?? Ria :)

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Sally Hansen complete Salon Manicure Right Said Red

today was lovely, we had lunch at Texas Roadhouse... if any of you in the US like steak and haven't tried that place... you definitely want to go! they have really good quality food at prices that won't have you fainting when glancing through the menu :)

today's polish is Sally Hansen complete Salon Manicure Right Said Red... i saw this one on clearance at Ulta and didn't pick it up... and have been lemming it ever since. so, i finally just went ahead and bought it! it's a gorgeous, gorgeous cream red that's almost walking the jelly line. i think because of that, the formula is a bit sheer. i went ahead with three coats, but two probably would have been okay... i just felt like you could see a slight bit of nail line at two. if you look incredibly closely, you can slightly see the nail line at three coats... what can i say, i'm seriously OCD. seriously. if you have short nails, two coats would be utter perfection. the color is so bright... it's like a power red. red nails always improve my mood somehow, it's like tough girl attitude in a bottle! :D like most Sally Hansen Salon polishes, this one dried shiny enough to not need a topcoat, but i added one to seal it off.

one coat Seche Base, three coats RSR, one coat Seche Vite.




i hope you all are having a relaxing, fun weekend! Ria :)

Friday, April 6, 2012

Rimmel London Lasting Finish Pro Rags to Riches

a fighter jet crashed into an apartment complex in Virginia Beach today, please send prayers and positive thoughts to everyone affected by this tragedy. thank you!!

today's polish is Rimmel London Lasting Finish Pro Rags to Riches... i think they need to shorten their name! the polish itself is outstanding, an olive shimmery pearl that is opaque in two coats. there is a slight bit of brushstroke visibility, but no more than your average shimmer polish. the formula itself is super easy to work with, the brush is amazing... i have zero negative feedback on this one!

one coat Seche Clear, two coats RtR, one coat Seche Vite.




i'm super impressed with Rimmel Pro polishes... great quality with a great price tag attached! i highly recommend giving them a try. Happy Weekend! Ria :)




Thursday, April 5, 2012

Julep Niecy

i am astounded at the price increase in flea/heartworm medications for dogs! they have at least doubled in price since i last bought them (around three months ago). i'm even more frustrated because my vet is out of stock of my dogs' normal heartworm meds, so i had to get a different brand for this month. i hope they have the normal meds back in before we move!!

last up of my April Juleps is Niecy, a super hot pink cream. i'm so annoyed because it's a yucky day and i can't fully enjoy how bright Niecy is! the day might be annoying, but this polish is gorgeous :) i went ahead with two coats on my swatching hand, but one coat was sufficient for my right hand. the difference is simply that my nails with two coats look thicker, more like fake nails. if you don't like that look (i happen to love it!) then one is all you'll need. after really eyeballing the one coated nails, i think you can maybe make out a slight nail line on some nails... but nobody is going to be looking that closely! i'm sure most people would not even see it on themselves... i just happen to be super picky :)

one coat Seche Clear, two coats Niecy, one coat Seche Vite.




how is it possible that yesterday was a dreamy beach day and today is cold and rainy?! the weather is being seriously bipolar lately... i'm putting my order in now for more beach days! Ria :)

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Julep Jessica

i spent the whole day sitting on the beach, it was lovely! a couple friends of ours are on vacation, so we got to hang out with them all day... my husband was able to join us for dinner at a seafood buffet. he was in heaven chowing down and i had some prime rib... seafood is just not my thing. the best part of the buffet was the cherry cheesecake! unlimited cherry cheesecake?! fabulous :)

Julep Jessica is totally one of my signature colors... it's a pale blue cream... basically, a baby blue. i simply cannot resist colors like this! and when it's opaque at one coat... there's not much more you can ask for! my only issue is that Juleps tend to want to bubble on me... but a coat of Seche Vite usually takes care of them. today my hands were especially shaky (too much sun?) so i just edited out a couple bubbles that were left. 

one coat Seche Base, one coat Jessica, one coat Seche Vite.




tomorrow's review will be the last of the April Juleps, i'm finishing off with a HOT pink! Ria :)

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Julep Penelope

i'm so excited, i bought my own horseback riding helmet today! :D the last time we went the helmet i got was smelly... SO gross. of course, i had to buy the pink helmet with a horse on it... that's just my personality :)

today we are checking out Julep Penelope, a light pink cream. it leans slightly peach and indisputably is a beautiful color. my issue is the opacity, it is quite sheer for a Julep polish. i did only use two coats, but i can see that i must have picked up quite of bit polish each swipe because a good chunk is missing out of the bottle! if you only like opaque polish, definitely skip this one... especially since it's not an unusual color, i'd imagine it's easily dupe-able... i'll check through my stash and see if i have a dupe myself.

one coat Seche Clear, two coats Penelope, one coat Seche Vite.




this is the first Julep i've tried that i've been disappointed in... it's not terrible, but because of the small bottle (with a big price tag!) it's a color i would only use when doing a french tip and only need one coat. this bottle had the new Julep brush... i can't believe that when i finally got used to using the original brush they changed it... *sigh*

hope everyone's week has gotten off to a great start! Ria :)

Monday, April 2, 2012

Julep Renee

it was cold and windy here this morning... where did that come from!? we've had such a balmy winter that any weather that smacks of being cold sends all us Virginians scurrying into our homes (or in my case, Target). i actually wore a sweater today! which is surprising because i'm generally one of those weirdos who never even wears a coat :)

i'm delighted to be showing off Julep Renee today! what a gorgeous light lavender cream... outside it's a bright, super pale purple and inside it appears more greYed out. and, lovely of lovelies, it's opaque in one coat! the formula is the usual Julep, practically applies itself... once you've gotten a handle on the brush. the brush in this one is the original Julep brush... i think i might like it better than the new one! i just shot an email to Julep to see what the deal is with the different brush, i'll report back once i hear from them.

one coat Seche Clear, one coat Renee, one coat Seche Vite.




this is such a perfect Easter color... makes me think of Easter eggs. it's a perfect alternative to actually boiling eggs and dyeing them! Ria :)

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Julep Susie

today my husband and i went horseback riding again, it's so much fun! my allergies didn't appreciate it, however... being allergic to grass is so annoying. it's awfully difficult to get away from :)

Julep Susie is a lovely warm toned mint cream... it's a very, very light pastel. in really bright sunlight it almost looks white! the formula is a bit more sheer than other Julips i've used, it definitely needed its two coats. it also has a new brush that is much more fat and a little longer... some of the Julips i received this month have the original brush, while others sport this new one. i wonder if it's just a market test, or if this will be the permanent brush.

one coat Seche Clear, two coats Susie, one coat Seche Vite.




indoors Susie looks a bit more green than it does in the photo. i finally figured out how to make the photos larger... i can't believe i've been seeing the buttons to do it the whole time, and just never realized that's what they were for. please excuse those cuticles! Ria :)