Mittwoch, 29. August 2012

The Lazy Days of Summer 14: BBQ Fun


I'm finally at the end of the Lazy Days of Summer Challenge! I can't believe I made it before the autumn challenge starts, lol. So for the last theme, I actually planned something else than I did in the end. Originally, I wanted to create a layer mani picturing this layer salad we usually did at home whenever we barbecued. But when I went through my stuff to pick what I needed, I suddenly had a change of heart and decided to create something different.

You know, when I was a kid, we used to barbecue over hot charcoal. It is a bit messy with all the clean up afterwards, but I think stuff tastes better because of the charcoal smoke taste that clings to the meat. A couple years ago, my parents decided to use a propane gas grill and since then I haven't had any charcoal BBQ. Even though we sell it a lot at the store I work at, I rarely know somebody who still uses it. So just because I miss it, I decided to do a glowing charcoal mani.

Yep, I revisited the good old crackle polish. It just seemed so fitting for this mani.

Anyway, I started this mani by creating a red jelly sandwich. For the base of the sandwich, I started with an unnamed polish by the brand Sabrina, a 1€-Shop brand. It looks awesome in the bottle and surprisingly, it's a one coater and doesn't even stink as badly as the other Sabrina polish I tried before. The pretty golden glow from the bottle doesn't translate perfectly to the nail, but you can see it.

Next, I added one layer of essence gold fever on top, a gold glitter polish that has tiny red glitter pieces thrown in. I had hoped the red glitter was more prominent... But it doesn't matter all that much, because I was going to cover it up anyway. For my red jelly polish, I used Kleancolor Red-hot. I'm not very much in love with it, because I find the glitter pieces slightly too big for my taste. But the red jelly they are suspended in is just great. I placed a couple of those big glitters too, just about 2 per nail. I ended up applying two coats of Red-hot, just because I liked it better a little deeper red.

Pointer & Pinky: Sabrina + gold fever; Middle & Ring: Sabrina + gold fever + Red-hot
On top of my glitter sandwich, I applied p2 black explosion, a simple black crackle polish. It crackled fine. Maybe I could have applied slightly thicker coats, but it's always a thin line between pretty crackles and barely any crackles at all...

Originally, I wanted to keep it this way, because charcoal is not glossy. But after I took my pictures, I felt like trying how it would look like topcoated. Totally different, but also pretty. Well, if I consider my theme, I like the no top coat version better, because it is so much closer to my memory. But I have been sporting it all glossy for 3 days now and got a couple nice compliments.

What do you think? Which version do you like better, glossy or non-glossy?

Last but not least, one more time, the list of participants to this challenge:

Dienstag, 28. August 2012

From the Vault: Neon Stars

Okay, there's only one post left for the Lazy Days of Summer Challenge, but I absolutely didn't feel like working on the pictures today... I have to admit, I was a little distracted by printed media these days. I finally got the Hunger Games trilogy with my Dshini points last week (that's what the banner in my sidebar is for, btw). While it took me about a week to read the first volume, I ended up reading the other two in a single day and thus, I'm lacking a tiny bit of sleep.

But you know, there are still a couple totally challenge unrelated manis waiting to be posted, so I want to show you one of those. I feel a bit bad about keeping them in my blog folder for so long... I finally worked on those pictures on July 1st...

So here's what I did with my then new set of Color Club neons.

I don't even remember what my base for this mani was. No idea... I felt a little bit like stamping that day and pulled out all my star themed plates. I love stars... I used to be really obsessed with the shape and all. (Now I'm obsessed with snowflakes.... aaah, can't wait for winter to come xD)

I just stamped all kinds of stars on my nails using plain white stamping polish, let that dry and then repainted the stars with my new neon polishes. I remember the dark green being a Flormar polish, the only "outsider". No idea why I stamped the sun. It seems a little random, don't you think?

I think it turned out okay for a first attempt at repainting stamped images. Still, I'm avoiding stamping... it's a bit scary and I'm really envious of all the awesome ladies to be able to create those beautiful stamping manicures. I really am.

So what's your opinion on my little star themed manicure?

Montag, 27. August 2012

The Lazy Days of Summer 13: Inspired by Something in your House

Hello everyone,

I know it's a bit late, but here's my take on the 13th theme of the Lazy Days of Summer Challenge: Inspired by Something in your House. I did this a couple weeks ago, when I had a sudden idea what to do for this challenge and just happened to get my hands on the inspiring something that moment.

Well, my inspiration was this painting of a huge rooster that hangs in the stairway of my parent's house. It reminded me of the fact that I still haven't created a feather manicure yet. I had bought a bag of feathers sometime in spring, but never used them. And I didn't use them for this mani either, because I just went across the street to my mom's second garden where she keeps her chicken. Since I was left to care for them that weekend anyway, I even had a good excuse to bother the poor ladies for a couple of their feathers. No, I didn't rip them from their bodies, but stole them from their nests. :D

I used Catrice Clay-ton my Hero as my base, because the color seemed to match the feathers. It's my first Catrice... haven't worn it since the day I bought and tried it... and had to decide that it doesn't go very well with my skintone. It looks nice as a base though.

Feather manis aren't very difficult... On top of Clay-ton my Hero, I  simply put a coat of a clear polish and put the feathers in the still wet polish. I didn't cut them before hand, only afterwards using manicure scissors. On top the feathers I put two coats of essence BTGN Top Sealer to even things out, but it was still a little bumpy. It looked a little boring, so I added some studs... still not sure if that was a good idea. But that's it to my first feather manicure.

As a bonus, here's pic of the four lovely ladies that provided me with the feathery material to work with~ Those are actually two different kinds of chicken.

In the last posts I forgot to include a list of the participants to this challenge, so here it is again. All the ladies have done awesome manicures, so be sure to check them out!

Freitag, 24. August 2012

The Lazy Days of Summer 12: Summer Nights

Yay, only three more manicures for the Lazy Days of Summer Challenge and one of them, I want to show you today! For this mani, I initially felt like doing a jelly sandwich again. I have done a blue one a couple of times already, so there had to be another aspect to this one.

I guess some of you (at least) also go inspiration hunting on Pinterest. From time to time there's a striped/border mani with palm trees showing up that feels very summery to me. But well, my theme is summer nights and that involves other colors than yellow, orange, pink and violet. Since I really find this mani pretty, I decided to use it as my inspiration anyway and change the colors so they fit my theme.

I applied this mani over Kiko 401 Peacock Green, which I still had on after the swatches.

For the jelly sandwich I used
- Kiko 401
- Kiko 336
- OPI Last Friday Night

and for the stripes (top-->down)
- China Glaze Midnight Mission
- Catrice Pool Party at Night
- Unnamed Color Club (violet)
- Unnamed beauty uk
- Unnamed Color Club (brown)
- black acrylic paint

On my pointer and pinky, I applied a coat of Kiko 336 Ink Blue over Kiko 401 Peacock Green. It's a bright blue jelly polish, which I find a little bit more difficult to apply compared to essence Cool and the Gang. On top of the jelly, I applied a coat of OPI Last Friday Night, topped it with a coat of diluted Kiko 336 and then applied another coat of OPI, because I found that the diluted Kiko covered up too much of the glitter.

I freehanded the stripes using a striper brush. I used cream polishes for the almost dark sunset sky and China Glaze Midnight Mission to hint a sky already showing stars. Kiko 401 is supposed to represent the sea, glittering in the moonlight. To hint the beach, I dabbed on a bit of a brown Color Club glitter.

For the black borders and the palm trees, I used acrylic paint, because it is easier to handle. I really suck at painting palm trees... Only once, I painted a couple decent ones on the nails of a colleague...

I have to admit that the pictures show this mani really well. In RL, most people could not see what I tried to paint. But okay... they wouldn't look as close up as my camera lens anyway.

So what do  you think of my dark palm trees against an almost dark sunset border mani? :D

Montag, 20. August 2012

The Lazy Days of Summer 11: Summer Days


first of all, I want to thank all of you have been commenting on my last post. It means a lot to me that I got this feedback. I'm definitely not going to stop posting in English, but I wanted to know if my readers would like me to post in German too. Well, there are a couple of days left and the post is not even 24 hours old, so I'll wait for now.

Anyway, before I'm going to face the heat again when I'm at work, I would like to show you my next Challenge item. The eleventh theme was "Summer Days" and I had a couple ideas on what to do for this one. I decided to let my love for Japan come through once more.

The first summer I spent in Japan back in 2007 was probably the best in my life so far. I had so much fun with all the other international and local students there. The weather was just awesome and I really loved the region. (I stayed in northern Aomori prefecture) So I wanted to do something that represents a part of the summer there. Festivals are a big thing every summer and every festival has these goldfish catch game for kids. You have to use a tiny paper fan to catch a goldfish from a shallow tub. I never actually tried, but I loved to watch the kids when they did.

To achieve my mani, I used white as my base color (uh, yes... again), because I didn't know how opaque the later sponging would be. I don't remember what colors I used for the sponging... I think it was a blue by Catrice and the usual unnamed white by Color Club.

Next, I painted the goldfish. I used red acrylic paint and watered it down a lot. I wanted the goldfish to look a bit like an aquarell, which I tried to achieve by layering the watered down red. It really looked that way, but it doesn't really show up on the pictures. With black and white, I added the eyes.

Next, I watered down some white acrylic paint to draw the white lines. I didn't want them to be too prominent. For the silver lines I actually used some polish, a silver striper by essence. It turned out to be a little too strong. I wanted those lines to be more subtle... oh well.

Lastly, a dabbed on a tiny bit of glitter and topped it with essence BTGN Top Sealer. I'm on my 6th bottle now... I love that topcoat.

I was really pleased with this mani. Loved it. What do you think? Is it summer days appropriate?

Okay... gonna face the heat now... Have a great day!

Sonntag, 19. August 2012


Hi again,

I got a comment on one of my blogposts yesterday that made me think a little. A girl commented that she finds it sad that I post in English and not in German, my mothertongue. I used to post in German in the beginning. Later on, I posted bilingual and at some point became to lazy and continued to post in English only. I consider English to be an universal language and I'm still thinking that it's the language of choice if you want to reach as many people as possible. I get the most hits from Germany and the US, so until now, I thought English was the best. I know that my English is not the best, but I think I can express what I want to say. Of course, I could do it better in German.

Well, maybe that's just my opinion. So that's my question. Do you agree with my arguing? What are your thoughts?

I added a poll in my sidebar on the right and I'd like to ask all of you to vote and/or comment. I limited the selectable answers to the two languages at stake plus two variations, even though some might prefer a third language :D

Thank you very much in advance!

The Lazy Days of Summer 10: Favorite Fruit


Here I am again with another post for the Lazy Days of Summer Challenge. There weren't as many usuable pictures for this one, so here it is... my favorite fruit! I was really pondering which is my favorite fruit. I don't eat fruits just as they are very often, but I use them for cakes, smoothies, ice cream... you name it. And I just love kiwi fruits are a base for my morning smoothie. So this mani is kiwi-themed!

direct sunlight

I used OPI Greenwich Village as my green base, though I diluted it with clear polish to make it more of a green jelly. My greens are all not very kiwi-colored, but this came closest. I did three coats of my green jelly, let that dry and then grabbed my white acrylics.


I painted an oval shape in the center of the nails and then, using a striper brush, drew the short stripes. A dotting tool and some black polish (p2 eternal) for the dots. I covered my stripes a little bit too much, so I added a couple more white stripes afterwards.

I was really surprised that I barely have any "middle" greens in my stash. I have a lot of dark and tealish greens though. What fruit has that color... watermelons maybe?

So today is supposed to be the hottest day of the German summer. I'll try to hide in my house, but it's sooooo warm in here already. I'm so weak when it comes to heat... 

Samstag, 18. August 2012

The Lazy Days of Summer 9: Thirst Quencher

Hello everyone~

I'm so glad the week is over... It was a hard one and I made a few mistakes that could have been avoided. But as usual... they bother me forever, because of the scolding by my superiors... meh. At least, one day off until Monday. Let's hope the coming week is a tiny bit kinder to me, haha.

Anyway, while I was on vacation last week, I worked on the challenge and finished all the themes except the last one, which I'll probably tackle tomorrow. Today, I'd like to post about theme number 9. The time was "Thirt Quencher" and and first, I wasn't sure what to do, because my favorite would be mineral water. Yes, boring. And the other things I like kinda where close to what I had in mind for theme number 10, Favorite Fruit...

When I posted about my last watermarble attempt, I got a really nice comment from Sue, who recommended me a tutorial and I decided to try once more! A watermarble appeared to be a suiting means to represent a thirst quencher. I chose three of the Woo neon's a colleague brought me from her holiday in Turkey to create the marble.

I first applied white polish to my nails, an unnamed one by Color Club, protected my skin with some vaseline and tried to watermarble just as the tutorial suggested. It worked a lot better than the last time, even though I still need to practice the dipping angle as there are still a couple bubbles.

The colors weren't as bright as I imagined them to be, but I like the overall outcome. I found it to be lacking something to really represent a thirst quencher... remember, mineral water!? I like it sparkly. so, I applied one coat of each of the three wonderful Seventeen flakie polishes I got from Cel.

I love flakies. Subtle, but so effective to totally change the look of any polish...

What do you think?

That's it for now. Have I mentioned that I didn't buy any nail polish this week!? :D
Have a fun weekend!

Dienstag, 14. August 2012

The Lazy Days of Summer 8: In the Garden


today, I want to show you another mani I did for the Summer Challenge. This time, my inspiration was supposed to be anything "garden". I had a couple ideas for this one and went with a pattern I saw on a Japanese blog a while ago.

Have I ever mentioned that I hate every single white polish I own? All of them need 3 coats, have horrible application and take forever to dry. Why is that!? Is there a white polish that's opaque in one coat?

Anyway, three coats of an unnamed Color Club polish are my base for this manicure. The flowers were painted with acrylic paint. I added a couple sparkles in the center of the flowers and framed my non-flowery nails with a golden glitter polish. That's all there is to this mani. I wanted to keep it rather simple and let the white be awesome on its own.

It was fun painting those flowers. Getting the shape right and all that. I'm not very good at keeping proportions, but I think my flowers turned out nicely this time. I need a better orange acrylic paint though...

While taking pictures, I noticed that my nails were matching my curtains...

What do you think? Do you like white nails? I find them rather interesting at times. Still looking for my perfect off-white too. Suggestions?

I hope you all have a nice day! See you tomorrow~

Sonntag, 12. August 2012

Kiko 402 - Jewel Pink (Swatch)


Today, I want to show you a few pictures of the last of the three holographic polishes I bought from the new Kiko LE this week. It has the number 402 and is called Jewel Pink.

As the name suggests, 402 is a pink holo polish, but the holo is a lot more subdued in this one compared to the other two. It's still pretty though.

The holo effect is there and it is linear, but it doesn't show up as a rainbow, but rather like some sort of glow, because the colors are close to the base color.

It's a pretty pink, but out of all the four polishes from this LE, I'd say it's the least impressive. Application was the same as the other two, quite easy. You see two coats in my pictures.

I'm a bit disappointed in this one. I hope the new series of holos that are going to be released in the coming months are going to include some pink holos with a stronger effect. I'd probably buy other colors with priority, but pink is a nice classic color... might feel the need to have a strong pink holo.

What's your opinion on this one?

Samstag, 11. August 2012

Kiko 399 - Silk Taupe (Swatch)

Here I am again with another picture spam involving the new holographic polishes from the Lavish Oriental LE by Kiko. I'm still amazed... and I'm so glad that we currently have sunny weather in my region. Perfect conditions to try out my new bunch of holos~

So after yesterday's post about the teal holo called Peacock Green, I want to present some many pictures of Kiko 399 today, a shade called Silk Taupe.

Compared to Peacock Green, the holo effect is quite a bit stronger. Even my crappy camera shows the full holo-V! For my pictures, I applied two coats and it appeared to be opaque. Although, right now, my nails are rather short, so if you have longer nails, you might need three. Since it is so easy to apply and dries quickly, this won't be problematic though. Like yesterday, I used no base or top coat.

Silk Taupe is a really light delicate color. Maybe my definition of what a taupe looks like differs from Kiko's, but to me Silk Taupe is no taupe shade. It's a beautiful greige that goes surprisingly well with my skintone. I can imagine this as a nice office color for all those that can't wear bright nail polish to work, but still love to wear something with a twist. On my pictures it looks quite silvery, but it's definitely no silver holo.

There's not much to add here. Silk Taupe behaves just like Peacock Green... flawless and easy to apply and it's quite shiny on its own. The holo effect stays very visible in indirect lighting too.

What do you think about this beauty? I think I really like it... it's probably going to be a color I'll reach out to whenever I feel like something calm. And yeah, that happens too. I just feel kinda bad if I'm uncreative and wearing a nail polish all on its own, hehe.
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