Monday, January 30, 2012

Kim-Pletely in Love with Fabulous is My Middle Name!


For those of you who read my tweets (@MWGirlieGirl), you probably saw I picked up some of the Kardashian Kolors on my shopping trip the other day. Continuing my recent pink kick, the first one I tried was Kim-Pletely in Love. I'm almost sad I mucked this one up with some glitter, but the end result was pretty.
The shimmer on Kim is barely there, but so pretty. It's nearly impossible to photograph, at least with my camera. This pic shows off the shimmer, even if the color isn't super accurate. Even in person, it's subtle, so I thought I'd liven it up a little. Also, I couldn't wait to wear all the new polishes. If I could have found a tasteful way to wear them all, you be I would have.
For the glitter, I used Fabulous is My Middle Name, also from Nicole by OPI, but not a Kardashian Kolor. This one is WAY fun, and I foresee this being a party time staple. This picture actually shows the little bar glitters pretty well. There are bits of hot pink, red, blue and gold in a clear base with a microglitter that appears to be kind of a champagne color. I just dabbed a little near (and on) the cuticles and blended down the nail. I added a pink rhinestone on the middle finger. I think it's off-center. Maybe that's just me.
I took some bottle shots to get a better sense of the colors. The second one of Kim-Pletely in Love is horrible, but the only way I could find the glitter without it being all blurry and rotten looking.

Both of these colors are so pretty, I couldn't stop taking pictures. Kim-Pletely in Love would make an awesome french manicure pink, if you're into that sort of thing. I'm not normally into french manis, but I did actually like the VNL on this one. It took 3 coats on most fingers, 4 on my middle nail to cover some yellowness (Thank you, Dree...).

I was really happy with the formula on both of these. The brushes were both great, though I do like that the Kardashian Kolors have a bit wider, thicker brush. It's not quite the controversial Perfect Stroke Brush, but it's nice. I think Fabulous is My Middle Name would easily build up for a crazy glitterbomb mani, but also is great for layering.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Belated Blogaversary Giveaway!

After posting pictures of my polish stash the other day, it dawned on me that I've been at this awhile...and that I missed my 6 month blogaversary. I had planned to do some kind of giveaway if I managed to continue this hobby for 6 months...and I did!

Being late for stuff pretty much sums up my life some days, so I decided to give some things away. Better late than never, right? The question is...what to give away?

It dawned on me that whatever products I choose essentially constitutes an endorsement from me. Since I am purchasing the prizes with my own hard earned dough, I felt it was only right to show love to the companies who have shown me love. Retweets from Zoya, Color Club and Nicole by OPI have gotten me TONS of page views, and I love all of their products, so my prizes were chosen.

Now for the specifics:

Prize #1: One bottle of Zoya Nail Polish. You can choose any color available on their website. I will have it shipped directly to you.

Prize #2: One of the Kardashian Kolors from Nicole by OPI. Since I can't find a way to buy directly from Nicole's website, I narrowed this one down to the Kardashian Kolors so that your choice would be readily available.

Prize #3: One bottle of Color Club Nail Polish. Like Zoya, any polish available from the website is up for grabs, shipped directly to the address you provide.

How do I win these fabulous prizes, you ask? Simple. Follow the blog. This is mandatory. If that doesn't happen, you don't get any of the other bonus chances. You can also earn entries by following @MWGirlieGirl on Twitter, Retweeting about this giveaway, and by "Liking" this blog post on Facebook. 5 total chances to win per person.

Entries will be accepted until 11:59PM (Central Time) on February 15, 2012.

This is my first giveaway, so if there are any kinks along the way, please bear with me. I'm using the Rafflecopter widget below to run the giveaway, so hopefully this will be a smooth process.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Multiplication of thePolishes: How the Stash Has Grown...

So, here's the funny thing about being a beauty blogger: You accumulate a lot of stuff. I've always had a fairly well-stocked vanity, and I'm not quite at the level of having closets dedicated to my goodies, but I'm getting there fast. Case in point. My first post, the polish stash looked like this:
This was everything I had for nail supplies. Everything. All in two neat little boxes. The collection of polish alone now fills two boxes completely, and the third doesn't even come close to holding the removers, creams, decals, cotton swabs, etc. I use.
This is just the polish and a few nail-specific odds and ends. I didn't even go up to the bathroom to get the removers and magic potions. And this is after my sister raided my stash and took little pieces of the collections I wouldn't wear on a regular basis, and I gave some of the unused bottles out for stocking stuffers at Christmas. My goal is to keep everything at a manageable level so my boyfriend doesn't start refusing to come to the girl den that is my apartment. Neatly organized in three little scrapbook boxes...for now...

Monday, January 23, 2012

Zoya Alegra

 I've been on a bit of a pink kick lately, in case you haven't noticed. My current mani is full of glittery goodness from Zoya. I picked up Alegra as part of the Flash Promos in December. I thought she might be a NYE pick, but ended up opting for a different glitter. Alegra was originally released with the Sparkle Collection. Charla and Ivanka are also in my collection, and Alegra is equally beautiful.
 The Sparkle collection certainly twinkles, but without big chunks of glitter. To say they shimmer is an understatement, but there isn't an "In-Your-Face" sparkle. It seems to pop more in low light and up close. If you have concerns about glitter at work, this is something you can wear without it being too much.
 The Sparkle Collection and the Summertime glitters are also fantastic for subtle Ombre manis. I have a sample with Essie's Meet Me at Sunset and Zoya's Tanzy here. Tons of fun, and really easy to do.
 You can see the glitter particles in the flash shots, and these seem to be fairly accurate color-wise.

Even in person, the minute differences in the glitter colors make the color change a bit, depending on the light.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Julep Maven January 2012

Since I posted Helena last night, I thought it might be a good idea to get a post up about the January Maven box she came in. Along with Helena arrived a bottle of top coat as well as the Pomegranate body creme. I used the top coat with Edyta previously, and I can't say it was extremely glossy, and I used another top coat with Helena, so I can't credit Julep yet. The body creme smells fantastic and has a lighter texture than some creams. It's definitely not a body butter, but it doesn't leave you feeling greasy after using, which is nice. Smells yummy, too. :)

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Julep Helena

 I'm finally getting around to wearing my new Julep polishes from the aforementioned Maven boxes, and I'm featuring Helena tonight. First, let me say this color is AMAZING. I love me some pink. This pink is hot. Fuchsia or magenta would be more accurate, I guess. Surprisingly, I think it could be pretty wearable for most people, too.
 The formula, like the other Julep polishes I've tried so far, applied smoothly. Like buttah. Flawless in two coats. I used three, just to see if it made a difference. It didn't. You're good in two. For this mani, I used a base of the Julep Nail Therapy followed by Julep's Base Coat, which seem to be a good combination. One interesting note: Helena dried on the matte side (see above photo). I don't know if it was the base coats or the polish, but I added a coat of Barielle Matte-inee, which isn't SUPER matte, but I thought might change it up. Didn't see a difference. The picture above is the most accurate representation of the color. It's almost dead on with my monitor.
 As pretty as Helena is by herself, I REALLY wanted to make her glossy, and a plain magenta mani seemed a little boring, so I busted out some more Nail Art Decals from Cina. This set is Garden Glam, which is a couple of little fairy-looking things and cute sparkly daisies.
 The bright pink flowers were a little hard to see unless in direct lighting, but I'm pretty happy overall. To get my glassy, glossy look, I used a coat of Julep's Fast Dry Topcoat, followed by the Beauty Secrets Top Coat I've been using for years. A lot of bloggers use Seche Vite and swear by it, but the big ole' bottle of Beauty Secrets is about $6 at Sally, which is a steal. It dries really quickly and is really good for sealing in nail art decals and stripes and the like. It's also free of formaldehyde and toluene, which makes me happy.
Helena dried like a sheet of glass. I've been wearing this mani for about 72 hours, and I chipped my index finger because I sometimes forget fingernails are not screwdrivers, but otherwise the wear has been fab. I was able to patch my finger, and you'd never know the difference. That's one sign of a great polish.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Catching Up: Julep Maven December 2011

Again with the playing catch up. December's Julep Maven box was pretty sweet. This one is the American Beauty set, which included Anne (the awesome purple) and Maria (pretty pink), Nail Therapy and a Pomegranate body scrub. I haven't had a chance to wear the polish yet, but the Nail Therapy makes for an excellent base coat. Four days and not a chip before I got bored and needed to change colors. It didn't save my nails from Dree's magical staining powers, but I did only use one coat. The scrub smells AMAZING. Even my boyfriend loved it. It has a kind of a fluffy texture for a sugar scrub, but whatever oil they used was great. You don't really notice the oil until you run your hands under the water, but my hands were really soft.

Overall, this was a great box. I haven't been disappointed with Julep. The polishes are always great quality. All of the lotions and scrubs I've sampled so far have been high quality. The Maven program really is a great value. $19.99 a month for a box of high quality products that would cost more at Target. You can check out more information about Julep's Maven program here. Disclosure: that is my referral link.

Monday, January 16, 2012

NOTD: Zoya Edyta & Dree

 Another quick post today. Still making my way through the massive unused polishes pile. Today, I'm wearing Zoya's Edyta from the Wicked collection, with Dree from the Smoke collection as the base for my accent nail. I've become a huge fan of the accent nail as a quick way to spice up a normal manicure.

Edyta is gorgeous and sparkles like nobody's business. It's hard to tell, but she's like a dark olive green with multicolored shimmer. Truly stunning. I thought Dree would look good with Edyta, and she did. Sadly, I was in a bit of a hurry and I smudged the stamp a bit. I also found both of these polishes are very pigmented. Edyta clung to the brush when I was applying my top coat, and Dree left my middle finger a nasty shade of yellow. She's pretty, but if you want to enjoy Dree, I recommend tripling your base coat. Eek.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

NOTD: Zoya Kendal & Nimue

 Nails for today are courtesy of Zoya. I picked up the Mirrors half of Smoke & Mirrors and most of the Feel Collection with the Flash Promos they had in December (Thanks, Zoya!), so I'm trying to make my way through these before I order more pretties.

For this look, I used Kendal as my base coat (2 coats) and I stamped the leopard spots with Nimue. I love that the Feel collection looks chic, even if you pair it with a somewhat wild print. I got a ton of compliments on this mani, and it lasted a full week before I decided it was time to play. I got the Color Lock system from Zoya this summer, and I've been really impressed with the way it wears.
 For some reason, I can't seem to get my camera to get this color right. It hates pinks and purples and reds. You get the idea, though.

Friday, January 13, 2012

January Birchbox

Hey, all! Many of you may have heard of Birchbox. It's a fantastic service that offers samples of beauty products for a $10 monthly fee. If you live in an area like mine, where most consider Bath & Body Works the be all end all of amazing bath products. Nothing against Bath & Body Works, but there are alternatives, and Birchbox delivers them to your door. I just got mine, so I haven't had a chance to use any of this month's products, but in the past, I've gotten mini bottles of Zoya polish, Philosophy face wash, lip glosses, eye shadow samples, pretty soaps and the like.
Birchbox includes a cute little card describing the goods. Rather than retype the information, I figured I'd just let you read firsthand.
I unwrapped everything so I didn't have to post as many pictures, but some items are usually loose in the box, and a few things are usually wrapped up in a little tissue paper package. A+ on the packaging.

You'll get more updates as I have a chance to enjoy my new treats. In the meantime, you can enjoy for yourself by checking about the Birchbox website. Disclaimer: That's my referral link. You, too, can share and get additional points towards purchases by joining.

Catching Up - A Jem of a Mani

 This is going to have to be a drive-by post, as it's a busy night for this girl. This was a mani from Thanksgiving 2011. The base is Jem from Zoya's Smoke & Mirrors collection. The accent finger is Anja from the Smoke portion of the set with Foil Me Once from Color Club's Foiled collection stamped over. Forgive the photography. Cell phone camera, and the background is my car steering wheel. Promise the vehicle was not in motion.
This shot happened to be just before dust and that light made Jem GLOW. This picture barely does it justice. Also, the whole Foiled collection is really fun, but a little over the top for the office. It's fabulous for stamping, though, and makes it more wearable than by itself. I like how this particular stamp mimics the look of a water marble with WAY less work.

Barielle Blackened Bleu

I found an awesome Hautelook (Disclosure: That's my referral link) deal on Barielle nail polish last month, and since I'd seen excellent reviews from other bloggers, I decided to give them a try. I have to say, I'm very impressed so far.

 Sadly, one bottle broke in transit, so my order was a sticky mess when I opened the tissue paper, but an hour and a lot of nail polish remover later, I was able to open the bottles. Success!!

 It was tough to decide which pretty to wear first, but I couldn't take my eyes off Blackened Bleu. It's a beautiful black with sapphire shimmer. Normal office lighting gives a blue glow to the nails, but in a soft lighting or bright sunlight you see flecks of a lighter real blue. The sparkle really shows. It's beautiful. Impossible to photograph with my camera, but very pretty. Highly recommended.