Thursday, February 28, 2013

March Photo Challenges

I am going to be participating in an Instagram photo challenge for the month of March! Please follow me @sparkleandpolish and consider joining the challenge yourself!! I will post a weekly review of my photo challenge here for those of you who aren't on Instagram!
I'm hoping that I'll be able to keep up with daily postings.  I know this isn't nail specific but I intend on tailor the challenges to fit nails, nail polish and nail art. 

I am also going to be doing a nail specific March nail art challenge, this is a laid back challenge, not one that requires daily posting.  Hopefully this will get me back on track to posting every day or every other day. Here is the info for this challenge in case you would like to join :)

Stay Sparkly,

My First Striping Tape Mani

I bought striping tape ages ago and was so intimidated by it, but after finding dotting tools to be quite easy, I decided to give it a try.  This mani was inspired by my current favorite sweater from Gap, though I just looked for it on the website and couldn't find it.. I'll update when its up there.

I found the striping tape to be easy to work with. It was thin, easy to cut and maneuver with.  Also, I was able to place it, then pick up the piece again and reposition it. The striping tape didn't pull up my manicure like regular tape sometimes does.  I purchased my striping tape from ebay, for maybe $5, for I think 8 different colors of tape.

This mani combines my dear dotting tool with striping tape, while mixing patterns can look garish, I think the black and white color combo keeps it from being over the top.

The white is OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls and the black is China Glaze Liquid Leather.

This was a busy mani but I really love it, particularly the polka dots. I can't wait to do another polka dot mani, and look for some more stripes once baseball season starts :)

Stay Sparkly,

OPI Don't Be Such A Budapest

This is a pale blue based lavender with subtle silver shimmer, this shimmer is extremely hidden, barely even visible in the bottle.  I had a hard time seeing the shimmer and an even harder time capturing it on camera, but this polish is so beautiful I don't miss the shimmer. This is a beautiful spring pastel shade that I think I will continue to reach for.

 This is one thin coat of polish. Quite sheer and streaky, but don't judge this polish off of its first coat! It builds to a creamy smooth periwinkle beauty with 3 thin coats, or 2 thicker coats.
without flash and with flash. 

Check back in a few days to see some pastry inspired nail art using this color!

Stay Sparkly,

Monday, February 25, 2013

Glitter Tips

I love the look of glitter polish, but I dread the removal.. even with the foil method. So I try to use glitter sparingly.  Glitter tips is one of my favorite looks, it is inspired by my coworker who always has glitter tipped acrylic nails.
I used a base of OPI So Many Clowns... So Little Time from the Spring 2011 Soft Shades Collection. I used 3 thin coats of this sheer, glossy nude color. You could do glitter tips without a base color, but I have quite short nail beds, so I use this color to help elongate the look of my nails.

The tips are Color Club Sugarplum Fairy, a pale lilac base with silver and holo glitter. To make the tips, I use binder hole reinforcers that I bought from Target. I find they are easier to work with after they have been cut in half, they mold better to the curve of the nail that way.
It was hard for me to capture the holo goodness from this polish. I have a theory that as soon as one uses holo polish the clouds show up and make photographing said holo polish impossible.

Stay Sparkly,

Flower Accent Nail

Dotting tools are my new best friend! They are so fun to play around with, and make nail art so much easier! I personally have never friend stamping, so this is it for me and nail art!
This is a base of OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls, with Vant To Bite My Neck and Don't Be Such A Budapest! I think I'm going back to OPI being my fav polish brand, it seems to be all I'm reaching for these days.

I did these nails special to go wedding dress shopping with one of my dear friends! She has chosen a deep plum shade for the bridesmaids dresses so I thought this manicure was appropriate for the occasion!

Stay Sparkly,

Saturday, February 23, 2013

OPI Vant To Bite My Neck

 I think I'm going to be repeating myself a lot with my posts about OPI Euro Centrale. So far every polish that I've tried has had flawless formula! Vant To Bite My Neck is a dark, vampy, glossy dream! I should mention that my pictures show this polish without top coat! Crazy shiny! This polish photographed quite dark, but it natural light it is obvious this polish is purple and not black.
This is one coat!! Amazing coverage! 

I have some spring nail art coming up using this color as inspiration! That will be coming in a few days.

Stay Sparkly,

Sunday, February 17, 2013

OPI Elephantastic Pink

This bright fun creme/jelly/crelly hybrid polish that I am shocked to love! This is the kind of color I usually shy away from, but upon the referral of the Sales Associate at Planet Beauty I gave it a chance. This is 3 easy coats of polish. You could get away with 2 coats if you don't mind some visible nail line. I personally don't like to see VNL so I added the extra coat.  This is a bright salmony pink, it is an orange based pink that is bright and fun and I think perfect for spring!

Also, I apologize for the black marks on my pointer finger, I ended up covered in pen from work today.
This polish is part of the core collection so it should be easily available wherever OPI is sold! Also, if you live by a Planet Beauty location, get there fast. They still have the buy 2 get 1 free OPI promotion!

Stay Sparkly,

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Valentines Look 2

I am loving this! It is so out of my comfort zone but it feels so bright and girlie!
This is OPI Elephantastic Pink, a fab bright pink crelly (review coming soon!), OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls, and China Glaze Fuchsia Fanatic!

Stay Sparkly,

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Valentines Look 1

I loved my last mani of OPI... Eurso Euro so much that I couldn't take it off just yet, so it became the base of my first Valentines Day Mani! I started out using my dotting tools with OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls, making a large heart and multi sized dots all around it.  I know my dotting skills aren't fab yet, but its a start.  After MBFSW dried, I used China Glaze Fuchsia Fanatic and a lighter shade of pink that I made by mixing the ChG and OPI together.  For the heart I tried to make it look like the different shades were mixing and swirling around with each other... it didn't quite turn out how I planned but I still love it.

 I almost left it with just the white dots.. but I promised my students I would do some pink nails this week.. I think they are tired of me only wearing blues and other dark colors.

A fuzzy attempt at a macro shot. I'm thinking about buying a macro lens for my iPhone, since that is how I take all of my pics.
Here's my nail art confession, whenever I do a design like a heart or letters/numbers, I never know which direction it should face, should I be able to look down at my hand and see it or should it be the other direction so its easier for others to see the design? What are your thoughts?

Stay Sparkly,

Sunday, February 10, 2013

OPI... Eurso Euro

As promised, here is my swatch of OPI... Eurso Euro. As much as I love this polish, it isn't what I expected... From blogger swatches I thought it would be far brighter... Perhaps it is due to how pale I am that is appears so dark? Never the less, this is pure blurple gorgeousness! This polish applied beautifully, covered in 2 easy thin coats. I think it could have been a 1 coater if I used thicker coats, but I am so prone to polish bubbling that I always try to do thin coats.

1 coat OPI Nail Envy
1 coat Revlon Color Stay Base Coat
2 coats OPI...Eurso Euro
1 coat Seche Vite
I only have one picture of this mani... It did not want to photograph correctly on my phone... but somehow once I uploaded the pic, it appeared much truer to color.
So this polish is AMAZING!! I wore it out today and got so many compliments, my friend could not believe it was regular polish and not gel because its so shiny! OPI just knows how to make a good creme polish. They have the perfect recipe and I hope they never change it!
You are gonna see this polish again soon, I used it as the base for one of my valentines looks!

Stay Sparkly,

Friday, February 8, 2013

OPI Haul!!

OPI has long been my favorite nail polish brand. I used to be all OPI all the time, because an old family friend worked for the company and when I was a little girl they would give me boxes and boxes of polish to play with. I still remember being obsessed with Bogota Blackberry, I probably still have a few black label bottles of it hiding somewhere in my house.
I have been eagerly anticipating Euro Centrale since I first saw the press release months ago.  I am proud to be of Eastern European descent, I am a mix of Hungarian, Czech and Russian, so a collection based on my heritage is just fabulous in my book!
I went to a beauty supply store by my work and found a complete Euro Centrale Display and a complete Oz display. I only purchased 4 from Euro Centrale and 1 from Oz, but I have a few in mind to go back for.

OPI.. Eurso Euro, Can't Find My Czechbook!, Don't Be Such A Budapest!, I Saw.. You Saw... We Saw...Warsaw

Don't Burst My Bubble (from Oz collection), I Juggle.. Men (from Soft Shades 2011 Collection)

I'm thinking about going back for, My Paprika Is Hotter Than Yours, Suzi's Hungary Again and Vant To Bite My Neck?  I have never purchased this many polished from one collection!! I can't wait to start swatting these. I already know I want to wear Eurso Euro first, so you'll be seeing that soon! Have you purchased anything from this collection? Should I add any more to my list?
While I haven't swatched, I did play around with some a cloud mani using OPI Step Right Up as my base, OPI Eurso Euro and Don't Be Such A Budapest! Love how well they go together.
*note- this did not photograph color accurate at all, both colors are far more blue based. I just loved the look and wanted to share :)

I also have some valentines nail art planned for this coming week, so check back to see that!

Stay Sparkly,

Monday, February 4, 2013


While I am not at the point to do a give away, there are some awesome blogs hosting giveaways right now!
Check out Galactic Lacquers 1,500 Facebook Follower giveaway! She has two great prizes! Follow this link to enter to win!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

China Glaze Blue Sparrow Neon

I have been going back and forth about buying this polish for a while, and then this morning I wandered into Sally Beauty and saw a big red sticker proclaiming LAST CHANCE stuck on this particular shade and several other ChG polishes.  I don't know if that means these colors are being discontinued by ChG or if Sally's is just deciding to no longer carry these particular colors.
I was a little too antsy to try Blue Sparrow so I applied it to my current mani, Chanel Blue Rebel, a deep grayed out navy.  This polish dried incredibly fast and matte, but the glitter really comes to live with top coat.

I can't wait to try this polish on its own! I foresee myself wearing this a lot during the summer months! It is like a blue version of Ruby Pumps, absolutely fabulous!!

Here is a list of the other polished that are last chance colors.
-Black Mesh Crackle
-Lightning Bolt Crackle
-Platinum Pieces Crackle
-Tarnished Gold Crackle
-Sea Spray
-White Cap
-Watermelon Rind
-Tree Hugger
-Designer Satin
-Blue Iguana
I'm still thinking about going back for Watermelon Rind and Sea Spray!  Will you be heading to Sally's to pick up any of these polishes incase they are being discontinued?

Stay Sparkly,

Friday, February 1, 2013

Go Red For Women

Today is Go Red For Women day! This day is set out to inform women about heart health. Heart disease is the leading cause of women, a fact that is shocking to most.  To learn more about Go Red and heart health, check out the official website

I decided to showcase some of my favorite reds, I tend to look at them but never really wear them as full manicures so this was a good excuse to revisit some old favs.

OPI Love Is A Racket and Vodka and Caviar, China Glaze Ruby Pumps and Chanel Pirate

Love Is A Racket was part of the Serena Williams Grand Slam duo from last year. It is a bright, glass flecked red, very similar to the reds from the Skyfall collection.  I could not get the glass fleck to show up much in the picture, but you can see it in the bottle.  I wore 3 thin coats, but I could still see a bit of visible nail line (vnl).  Some people aren't too bothered by vnl, but I am, that is cause enough for me to change my mani.
OPI Vodka And Caviar! This is my go to red, I wear this as a pedicure color most of the year. It is a rich, dark blue based red. I would describe the formula as a jelly like creme.  It applies pretty flawlessly. This is a core collection color, so it should be available anywhere OPI is sold.
China Glaze Ruby Pumps, this is such a classic color, every polish enthusiast should own it.  A stunning polish with microfine glitter particles in a glossy red base. This picture is 3 thin coats without top coat! Look at that sparkle! This is a core collection color and should be available wherever China Glaze is sold.
Chanel Pirate! Glossy red jelly perfection! To my eye this is a pink based red, but it is still deep enough that it doesn't look garish on.  These pictures show the polish without base coat! Incredible shine! Chanel polishes are my weakness, you will see shortly as I am currently attempting to swatch all of my Le Vernis Nail Colors! Any requests?
The only draw back to these reds are the potential to stain.  I swatched each color over OPI Nail Envy, no polish was on my nails for more than 10 minutes but I did have a noticeable tint to my nails and the surrounding skin. 
Stay Sparkly,