A girl and her love of nail polish

Posts tagged ‘Ulta’

Nail-aween Nail Art Challenge: Matte Dotticure

So this is my Day 2 post for the Nail-aween Nail Art Challenge from datyorkLOVES/Sassy Nails. There are 10 themes, and I have to complete all of them by the end of October, but other than that, it’s self-paced.

Today’s theme is a matte dotticure. I was really happy with the way this one came out, and it was really fun to wear.

Halloween Dotticure Dotting Nail Art with China Glaze Riveting

Halloween Dotticure Dotting Nail Art with China Glaze Riveting

I started with two coats of Orly Liquid Vinyl on all of my nails except my ring finger, which is two coats of China Glaze Riveting.

I added one coat of Poshe quick-dry top coat. As I did, some of the China Glaze Riveting transferred to the brush and then to my nail as I was painting the next black nail, and it left behind a bit of the orange shimmer. I really loved the way it looked, so I decided to do some minor frankening: I mixed a bit of the two colors together on some wax paper and then painted that on top of the black nails so they’d all have a bit of the orange shimmer on them. Topped all of that off with Poshe when I was finished.

Halloween Dotticure Dotting Nail Art with China Glaze Riveting

Then I added dots. I started with Ulta Snow White dots using the head of a pin, then used a small dotting tool for the inner dots: black on the orange nail, orange on the black nails. The accent nail almost looks like a bunch of googly eyes, don’t you think?

Halloween Dotticure Dotting Nail Art with China Glaze Riveting

To make it matte, I added one coat of Essie Matte About You. Unfortunately I didn’t let it dry long enough before I applied it, and it smeared some of the dots. 😦 The matte effect wasn’t very strong, perhaps I needed to add more.

Halloween Dotticure Dotting Nail Art with China Glaze Riveting

Here’s a look at the manicure before I added the matte top coat.

Halloween Dotticure Dotting Nail Art with China Glaze Riveting

Halloween Dotticure Dotting Nail Art with China Glaze Riveting

Halloween Dotticure Dotting Nail Art with China Glaze Riveting

Nail-aween Halloween Nail Art Challenge

Check out all of the NailAween Nail Art Artists!

Polish Us Pink – Pink Glitter Gradient

As you’ve hopefully heard by now, October is breast cancer awareness month. Several nail polish bloggers have organized the Polish Us Pink campaign, through which they will be posting pink manicures on Mondays throughout the month to help raise awareness. I’m joining in with today’s pink glitter gradient, which is dedicated to my grandmother. She was a breast cancer survivor.

This manicure is similar to the silver and gold glitter gradient I did last month. There’s a link to a tutorial in that one if you want to learn more about the technique.

Pink Glitter Gradient Nail Art with Essie Luxeffects A Cut Above

I started with a clear base coat and then added Sonia Kashuk Smoke And Mirrors, a silver metallic, to my tips (in retrospect I wish I had started with a pink polish instead of the silver but at the time I wanted something metallic. I now think something shimmery pink would have been fine).

Pink Glitter Gradient Nail Art with Essie Luxeffects A Cut Above

I then brushed on Essie Luxeffects A Cut Above (medium and small pink hex glitter in a clear base), concentrating on the line where the tips met my nail to start the gradient.

I added on a little bit of OPI Mad As A Hatter, which is a much-coveted densely packed multi-glitter with pink, purple, silver and turquoise, spreading that to about the halfway mark.

Pink Glitter Gradient Nail Art with Essie Luxeffects A Cut Above

And to top it off I layered on Ulta After Party, which looks pink in the bottle but I think technically is just red and silver micro glitter, bringing that almost the the cuticle line.

Pink Glitter Gradient Nail Art with Essie Luxeffects A Cut Above

Blurry to show glittery goodness

For more about breast cancer, please visit  the breast cancer page on the American Cancer Society’s Web page, which has lots of information about mammograms, treatment and how to get involved with the fight for a cure.

Here’s a look at some of the other bloggers participating in Polish Us Pink. Please click here to see them:


Nail-aween Nail Art Challenge: Water Marble

So this is my Day 1 post for the Nail-aween Nail Art Challenge from datyorkLOVES/SassyNails. There are 10 themes and I have to complete all of them by the end of October, but other than that, it’s self-paced.

So today’s theme is water marble. I’m not that happy with the way it came out. I tried to fix it, and I think that made it worse. Alas.

Halloween Water Marble Nail Art

I started with two coats of Ulta Snow White and then moved on to the water marble. I went with Halloween colors: black – Orly Liquid Vinyl; orange – Zoya Jancyn; purple – Sally Hansen Rock Hard; and white – Ulta Snow White.

Halloween Water Marble Nail Art

When I was done, I thought some of them looked a little messy so I tried to camouflage with some dots, using Sally Hansen Rock Hard. The polish was a bit on the sheer side, so then I started with a dot of Ulta Snow White and laid a dot of Rock Hard on top of it. Mistake. They didn’t look that great, and the smeared a bit on my index finger when I added a coat of Poshe fast dry top coat, making it look messier than it really was. I should have just left well enough alone and not tried to add the dots.

Halloween Water Marble Nail Art

Cleanup was a little tough with this; I suppose that’s par for the course.

Halloween Water Marble Nail Art

I did like the way the middle finger came out,and the ring finger almost looked like a spider web.

Nail-aween Halloween Nail Art Challenge

Check out all of the NailAween Nail Art Artists!

30 Day Challenge Day 30 – Tutorial: Bold Retro Wallpaper Nail Art

It’s Day 30 of the 30 Day Challenge, and I’m proud to say that I made it all the way to the end without missing a day. Not bad for my first challenge!

Off the top, I’d like to thank Rachel from Polished Criminails for getting this iteration of the challenge going and for organizing the InLinkz codes that made it possible for us all to link to each other. And thanks also to all of the other bloggers that participated. I really enjoyed seeing what everyone else came up with.

So on to the manicure, which is inspired by a tutorial. It’s based on this video tutorial from IndigoNova1, recreated with a slightly different color scheme.

Black and White Retro Dot Nail Art with Color Club Tweet MeBlack and White Retro Dot Nail Art with Color Club Tweet Me
For the base I used Color Club Tweet Me from my September BirchBox, which is a chartreuse creme. I really didn’t like it in the bottle but I thought it would provide a great backdrop to this design, and I’m so glad I tried it out. I like it a lot better on the nail. And first glance I thought it was yellow, but now I see it as more of a green. As far as formula though, it goes on very streaky and patchy. I used three coats here, and had it not been for the fact that I was going to put nail art on top I would have needed a fourth.

Black and White Retro Dot Nail Art with Color Club Tweet Me

For the dots I used Orly Liquid Vinyl and Ulta Snow White, and then Kiss striper polishes in Black and White for the stripes.

Black and White Retro Dot Nail Art With Color Club Tweet Me

As recommended in the notes of the video tutorial, I used the blunt end of a wooden skewer as a dotting tool to create the largest dots. For the smaller ones, I used the head of a pin. This was pretty simple to create and pays off big with a strong visual element. It would look good in a lot of different color combinations.

Black and White Retro Dot Nail Art With Color Club Tweet Me

And here’s a look at Color Club Tweet Me on it’s own:

Color Club Tweet Me

Thanks very much for reading. I hope you enjoyed some of the manicures I came up with for the 30 Day Challenge. Next up for me is the Nail-aween Challenge from datyorkLOVES (not too late to join, if you’re interested) and the Polish Us Pink Breast Cancer Awareness campaign organized by The Subtle Shimmer and several other bloggers (another not-too-taxing one that you can still join).

30-Day Challenge, 30 Days of Untrieds

Please visit some of the other bloggers that participated in the 30 Day Challenge this month.
I know we all needed a lot of encouragement to get through, so thanks for providing it! Click here to see them:



30 Day Challenge Day 29 – Supernatural: Vampire Nail Art

Coming in under the wire here on Day 29 of the 30 Day Challenge because it took me all day to figure out exactly how I wanted to portray the theme of vampires for my inspired by the supernatural manicure.

Vampire Nail Art

I’m a big fan of most things vampire these days: Buffy The Vampire Slayer, True Blood, Twilight, Being Human, Anne Rice novels, etc., etc..

I finally found this manicure based on the Buffy The Vampire Slayer TV series, so I used that as the basis and then tweaked it a bit to be more generally vampire themed rather than specifically Buffy.

The thumb represents fire. The index finger represents dripping blood, ever-present in most vampire lore. The middle finger is a cross necklace. The ring finger is a stake through a heart and the pinkie is a vampire bite. So representing both sides with this one: the vampires and the weapons that can take them down.

Vampire Nail Art

Here are the polishes I used:
thumb: two coats of Color Club Catwalk Queen, Sinful Colors Lets Meet, Kiko 359, China Glaze Riveting, Ulta Steppin Out

Vampire Nail Art Fire

index: two coats of Ulta Snow White, Ulta Steppin Out

middle: three coats Orly Royal Velvet (untried for 30 Days of Untried), Kiss Silver striper polish

Vampire Nail Art Dripping Blood, Cross/Crucifix

ring: two coats of Orly Liquid Vinyl, Essie Very Cranberry, Kiss Silver striper polish

pinkie: two coats of Ulta Snow White, Orly Liquid Vinyl, Ulta Steppin Out

Vampire Nail Art Stake Through The Heart, Vampire Bite

30-Day Challenge, 30 Days of Untrieds

Please visit some of the other bloggers that are participating in the 30 Day Challenge this month. I know we will need a lot of encouragement to get through! Click here to see them:



30 Day Challenge Day 28: Storm Warning Flag

For Day 28 of the 30 Challenge Challenge, we were tasked with doing a manicure inspired by a flag. I wanted to do something a little different, so I went with maritime weather warning flags.

Storm Warning Flag Nail Art

I based my design on the storm warning signals. The storm warning flag consists of a black square in the middle of a red square. Flying two storm warning flags indicates a hurricane.

Storm Warning Flag Nail Art

I painted my pinkie to mimic the storm warning flag and my ring finger like hurricane flags. The other fingers don’t represent actual flags, just other designs that picked up the color scheme.

Storm Warning Flag Nail Art

As for the colors, the red is Ulta Steppin Out — untried for 30 Days of Untrieds — which is a nice red but very thick. The black is Orly Liquid Vinyl and the white is Ulta Snow White. The white stripe on my thumb is with a white Kiss striper polish.

Storm Warning Flag Nail Art

Originally I was going to work in small craft warning and gale warning flags (on red triangle flag and two red triangle flags, respectively) but I didn’t like the way they came out so I replaced them with what you see here. I was trying to use striping tape to block of triangles, but the Ulta Steppin Out really was too thick to work for that. Maybe I’ll try this manicure again sometime with a different red.

30-Day Challenge, 30 Days of Untrieds

Please visit some of the other bloggers that are participating in the 30 Day Challenge this month.
I know we will need a lot of encouragement to get through! Click here to see them:



30 Day Challenge Day 23 – Movie: Wizard Of Oz

I had the idea for this manicure pretty early on but it took me a little while to figure out exactly how to portray it. Day 23’s manicure theme is inspired by a movie, and the movie I chose is The Wizard Of Oz.

Wizard Of Oz Nail Art

Wizard Of Oz Nail Art

My thumb is for Dorothy, a blue and white gingham pattern like her dress. I used Ulta Snow White as the base, my untried for the 30 Days of Untrieds challenge I’m doing simultaneously. For the stripes, I used Nails Inc. Baker Street. I mixed it with white for the lighter shade of blue.

Dorothy Gingham Wizard Of Oz Nail Art

My index finger is for the Cowardly Lion. The base is Sinful Colors Let’s Meet. The middle finger is patches for the Scarecrow, on a base of Essie Mocacino.

Cowardly Lion, Scarecrow Wizard Of Oz Nail Art The ring finger is for the Tin Man getting his heart, on a base of Sonia Kashuk Smoke And Mirrors, and the pinkie is Glenda the Good Witch’s wand, on a base of Sinful Colors Social Ladder.

Tin Man, Good Witch Wizard Of Oz Nail Art

I used a bunch of other colors and lost track a little bit. I know there’s some Zoya Codie in the lion’s mane and the face, the patches are Nails Inc. Baker Street and Essie Very Cranberry, which I also used as the heart. The wand is silver and black striper polish from Kiss.

Wizard Of Oz Nail Art

I topped it off with Poshe fast-dry top coat.

30-Day Challenge, 30 Days of Untrieds

Please visit some of the other bloggers that are participating in the 30 Day Challenge this month.
I know we will need a lot of encouragement to get through! Click here to see them:



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