Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Be Ama-Zing! and Big City Dazzle

**all items purchased by me

Time for another ABC challenge post!  Once again, I picked 2 untried polishes that both start with the letter B.

I used a ridge-filling base coat, of course.  And then I did 2 coats of Nicole by OPI Be Ama-Zing!.  And after a minute or 2, I put on a coat of Out the Door, which then proceeded to pull a never-seen-by-me stunt on gave me matte tips!  Maybe when I did the edges with it, some pooled on top and that did some funky reaction, I don't know.  But since it did (and on all my nails) it helped me decide on the next step (below).
Be Ama-Zing! is from the Kellogg's Special K and Nicole by OPI collaboration.  It's a lovely bright magenta pink (on my nails in person, it's leaning more red pink- like the label shot below), but not so bright it looks like a neon.  I could have gotten away with just one coat, but I added a second since it was getting it's picture taken.  
~label shot is most color accurate~

I already knew I wanted to use a glitter polish but I hadn't decided on how I wanted to put it - all over, gradient from the cuticles, funky french, accent....  But since I had unintentional matte tips that were all uneven, I decided to do a glitter gradient from the tips using NYC Big City Dazzle.  I just brushed it on where I wanted it, then after all my nails were done once went back and added a bit more on just the tips.  After pictures, I added another coat of Out the Door to seal everything down and smooth it out.
Big City Dazzle is in the New York Minute formula and it's labeled as "Sparkle Top Coat."  That means that this polish that has blue and magenta micro glitters and gold even tinier micro shimmers was perfect for this type of application.  The base wasn't even too thick either.
I really like this combination and the way the glittery sparkle top coat looks done as a gradient.  I've actually already featured Big City Dazzle in one post, but just as a comparison to another polish so it was only on for a matter of an hour or so - I still considered it untried.  Not anymore!

Has your top coat every done anything strange to your manis?

**all items purchased by me
**my opinions are my own
**not sponsored/affiliated

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Collective Hair & Skincare Haul

**all items purchased by me (or received as requested samples)

I'm still working on cleaning out my "hauls" folder, so it's time for a collective hair and skincare haul.  These things were all purchased (or gotten as samples) over the months of June and July.

I got this way back in June, but I forget what store I found them at.  I better remember in the next few weeks, though... For some reason, I want to say at the grocery store...but I could be way off.  I'll have to keep my eyes open when I'm out and about.
St. Ives Exfoliating Pads

From North Coast Beauty Supply (also in June):
Soft Touch Grinder Foot File for about $3.50 - my hair stylist had recommended the OPI one, but I didn't want to spend that much on a foot file (for now)...can we say random conversations while I'm getting my hair done?
Straight Sexy Hair Deep Conditioning Masque for Thick/Coarse Hair.  On clearance for $5!  My other deep conditioner is running low, so this will take it's place.

From Walmart back in June:
Neutrogena Visibly Bright Daily Facial Cleanser

From Walmart a couple weeks ago:
Equate Beauty Regenerating Daily Cream Cleanser - Exfoliates & Detoxifies (compare to Olay Regenerist Regenerating Cream Cleanser)

From Dillards, almost 2 weeks ago I bought:
 Clinique Even Better Eyes Dark Circle Corrector - the jury's still out on if it's right for my under eye area

I got a few more samples last week on 2 different days from Macy's Mac counter and the Elizabeth Arden counter in Dillards:
top: MAC Volcanic Ash Exfoliator and Pro Longwear Concealer in NW20
(I also tried out the Studio Fix Powder Foundation in N4)
middle: MAC Mineralize Moisture Gel and Matte gel (had to ask the dermatologist first about the Mineralize Moisture Gel since it does contain a small amount of salicylic acid and I didn't want to cause extra sensitivity since I use benzoyl peroxide)
bottom: Elizabeth Arden Advanced Eye-Fix Primer and a tiny bit more of Visible Difference Peel & Reveal Revitalizing Mask

And finally, from TJ Maxx, I bought this:

Elizabeth Arden Peel & Reveal Revitalizing Treatment
~this is in old packaging and now known as Visible Difference Peel & Reveal Revitalizing Mask~
~packaging/name change happened earlier this year~
~$12.99 for this one versus $36 for the current (I don't know where TJ Maxx got the "compare at $26" amount from - maybe the old one was cheaper?)~
~I believe I found this just after going to Dillards and got super excited to find it~

Wow.  With all this skincare I should have gorgeous skin, right?  I wish - which is why I got it all.

See anything you've used before?  Any opinions?

**all items purchased by me (or received as requested samples)
**my opinions are my own
**not sponsored/affiliated

Monday, July 29, 2013

Spotted, Hauled & Swatched - Nicole by OPI Gumdrops

**all items purchased by me

Today I've got another Spotted, Hauled & Swatched post to share!  Apparently I like to do these on mostly Mondays.  Anyway, the Nicole by OPI Gumdrops collection came out a few months ago (May) at only Walmart locations, which is where I purchased mine from.  But just recently, I've seen the collection sitting pretty at CVS (and maybe Rite Aid too, but right now my brain's feeling a little fuzzy).  I purchased mine over the course of a few visits since these are $7-$8 each.

So, let's get started with the display shot.  I've got one from Walmart and one from CVS.
~I did not get the black one (front center of the CVS display), which is called A-Nise Treat, since it's essentially a dupe of Zoya PixieDust in Dahlia~

Haul pictures:
 Cinna-Man of My Dreams, Blue-Berry Sweet On You, Candy is Dandy
I Lilac Gumdrops, My Cherry Amour

And swatches, all 2 coats:
 Blue-Berry Sweet On You, Cinna-Man of My Dreams, My Cherry Amour, Candy is Dandy, I Lilac Gumdrops

  • My Cherry Amour has super-fine holographic sprinkles (love!)
  • Candy is Dandy has 2 sizes of holographic hex glitters
  • Cinna-Man of My Dreams has reddish/copper unique!
I might have a lot of textured polishes already from OPI, Zoya, Julie G, Sally Hansen and Milani, but these colors are all unique to least the ones that have been released so far.  There are a couple that are similar, but still different enough for me to have purchased them.  I do wish that the teal Gumdrop that's exclusive to Shoppers Drug Mart (I saw it on Swatch and Learn's Instagram page back in June) was available here, though.

Do any of these catch your eye?  Are you excited for the newly released Fall PixieDusts from Zoya? or the 3 from OPI in the San Francisco collection?  Any you'd like to see on the nails soon?

**all items purchased by me
**my opinions are my own
**not sponsored/affiliated

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Sunday Stash Sharing - Sally Hansen Fuzzies, Sugars and New Miscellaneous

**all items purchased by me

It's the end of the weekend...again...  I can't believe how quickly the time is passing.   And I'm not just saying that either.  In just a matter of a couple days, it will be August.  So what better way to do the last Sunday Stash Sharing of July than with finishing up my Sally Hansen polish collection?  And since this will be the last post for this brand (until if/when I purchase more) I'll be including a round-up of all the previous posts for this brand - there was quite a few of them.

So let's get started with the one polish that I've added to my collection from a line that I've already posted before - the Diamond Strength line
230 Sweetie Pie
~still listed on Sally Hansen's website~

Now let's move on to the Fuzzy Coat line:
 100 Wool Lite, 700 Wool Knot and 400 Tight Knit
 500 Fuzz-Sea, 300 Peach Fuzz and 600 Fuzzy Fantasy
200 All Yarned Up and 800 Tweedy

And finally, the Sugar Coat line, which is limited edition:
800 Lick-O-Rich
~initial collection member~
210 Royal Icing, 220 Treat-Heart and 230 Pink Sprinkle
~these 3 came out as part of a second collection fairly recently~
I'm thinking that this week will be a good one to stay home as much as possible in order to stay out of Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement traffic.  I made the mistake of being out around the balloon lift-off activities 2 Saturdays ago - traffic and parking nightmare...all so Kitty would be stocked up on his favorite foods.  So I should be able to get caught up and hopefully a little bit ahead for the blog, as well as some house work and gardening.

Do you see any you have?  How about any you'd like to see on my nails soon?  Is there a particular time where you live that you try to avoid going out due to some event happening?

**all items purchased by me
**my opinions are my own
**not sponsored/affiliated

Friday, July 26, 2013

A Crewed Interest got an Atomic Splash

**all items purchased by me

Any idea why there's a giant letter "A" up above?  No?  Well, I decided I'm finally going to work my way through the ABC polish challenge!  I first read about this challenge last year (if I remember right) on Essie Rae's blog, iHeartPrettyPolish, and just recently Kirsten over at Geeky Owl has started it.  I thought to myself, why keep putting this off?  Just go for it!  So I am.  What better way to really wear my massive stash?  The posts most likely won't be up back to back days since I do prefer to wear each manicure I do until it chips off.  So prepare for seeing 26 (or more) never-before-seen-on-my-nails polishes!  Or at least my goal is to use all untrieds (we'll have to see when it comes to a less-used letter like Z).

So, for my first post in the challenge, I started off with a base coat of Bridge the Ridge (which I keep adding thinner to so I can get more life out of the bottle).  Then I added 2 coats of Essie A Crewed Interest.  I topped that off with a coat of Out the Door to help it dry faster and seal it all in.
A Crewed Interest is from the Spring 2012 Navigate Her collection.  I paid a whole $2 for this from Walgreens a month or 2 ago (I just never got that haul posted).  This pretty pinky-peach creme color went on pretty easily, but it was slow drying, even with the top coat.  It could be Essie doesn't get along with Out the Door.  My first coat was on the thinner side with a medium-thick second coat which made it nice and opaque.
Then I did a quick glitter gradient going from the cuticles using Orly Atomic Splash.  The suspension base gave me a little unevenness, so I topped that off with another coat of Out the Door to make it smooth and shiny.  
Atomic Splash is from the Flash Glam FX collection, which I believe was only available in 2012 for in-store purchase (but it's still available on  It's comprised of gunmetal hex glitters in 2 sizes.  My pictures are making most of the glitter look black, but I promise it's not.  The base is clear and on the slightly thick side, which made it a little tricky to do the gradient just using the brush.  It did need a very good shake before using since all the glitters had sunk and there was quite a bit of the suspension base just sitting on top in the bottle.  
This would look neat over other colors as well.

~Note to self: try glitter gradients using a cosmetic sponge to absorb excess base.~
~Another note to self: Essie does not get along with Out the Door on my nails - you're mileage may vary.  I'll have to remember to use China Glaze Fast Track with all my Essie polishes~

My first challenge post is done!  There might be a post coming up for "B" sooner than expected since I've already got some tip shrinkage on a few nails.  Once that happens, I tend to play with it until it chips.  And my thumb nail already has a tiny chip from where the edge shrunk.

Do you have either of these polishes?  How do you decide what polish to put on each time?  Have you ever attempted a challenge like this?

**all items purchased by me
**my opinions are my own
**not sponsored/affiliated

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Early July Collective Haul!

**all items purchased by me

I thought today would be a good day to clean out the "haul folder" on the computer.  There's a lot of little purchases, so this won't completely clean out the folder... More for another day!  These were all picked up on different days over about a week.  Clearly I need to stop leaving the house so much.  lol  But since I'm a shopaholic, we all know that won't happen - maybe just slow down a tad.

First up, Big Lots:
Sally Hansen Diamond Strength in Sweetie Pie
NYC In a New York Minute in Python Green
~$1.00 each!~
 E.L.F. Bronzer & Blush (plus kabuki brush)
My favorite CVS brand Eye Makeup Remover (I've gone through multiples)
~I did notice that the lid is different again (maybe my current bottle is a bonus size?) so I'll probably switch lids when the time comes so it's harder to accidentally pour out too much~

North Coast Beauty Supply (local shop):
China Glaze in Cowardly Lyin'
~from the 2009 Wizard of Ohh Ahz Returns! collection~
~I'm looking at the rest of that collection over on Scrangie's site, and lots of pretties there (might have to do some hunting around)~
~I got it on sale for $.99!!~

A couple from the grocery store (Giant Eagle):
Maybelline Baby Lips - Electric collection in Oh Orange!
Sally Hansen VitaSurge Cuticle Gel

I think that's enough pictures for today.  I've already used a couple of things a couple times, but not enough to really make any opinions.  I'm hoping that the Baby Lips shows up at least a little on me... The makeup remover is a backup.  I had gone to CVS that day looking for something (maybe a limited edition collection?) - didn't find it there, but I didn't want to waste the trip since it's definitely out of my way so I bought a new bottle knowing I was about half way through my current.  

As far as not shopping as much...I do know that I want to head back to North Coast to look for the Fall collection from OPI (gotta get my hands on the new liquid sands) and the Fall PixieDusts.  Hopefully they will get enough in and/or restock so that I can take my time purchasing them, since it does add up quickly.  And I still want to get a couple of skin care things that I mentioned in my post from the other day.  Those are all the things that have caught my eye (so far) but I know that the drugstores haven't brought out any fall displays yet so....we'll see.

Have you used any of these products?  What did you think of them?  

**all items purchased by me
**my opinions are my own
**not sponsored/affiliated

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

OPI Jinx on My Nails

**all items purchased by me

I was in the mood for a nail post today so I thought I'd share a recent polish I wore.  Hopefully showing off such a bright, summery color will influence the hotter summer weather to come back - I want to get in the pool again but it's been too cool.  Bummer.

Anyway, the bright summery color is the famous OPI Liquid Sand in Jinx from the Bond Girls collection that came out for Summer 2013.  I believe this is 2 coats (possibly over a base coat, but I don't remember for sure).

Jinx is a gorgeous red-orange with golden shimmer to give the sand it's spark.  I love how the shimmer and the texture combine in this pretty!  Looks like it's glowing on my nails.  Dry time was pretty good as well.

OPI Jinx is also similar to Julie G Gumdrop in Sugar Rush and Zoya PixieDust in Destiny.  I don't have Destiny, but I do have Sugar Rush and holding the 2 up to each other on the swatch wheels, they are extremely similar.  I'd say if you have one, you don't need both (or all 3) unless you're obsessed with having whole collections.

Do you have Jinx or one of it's dupes?  Is it still nice and summery where you live?  Are you excited for the new Liquid Sands that are coming out soon?  I know I am!

**all items purchased by me
**my opinions are my own
**not sponsored/affiliated

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Window...I mean Sephora Online...Shopping List

**nothing purchased; just a wishlist

I'm having a very hard time deciding what to post today, so I thought I'd share some products that have caught my eye as ones I think I would like to purchase.  If you've had any experience with any of them, please leave a comment!  I've been seeing a dermatologist for over 3 years but so far, nothing has done the trick and I am sick of spending so much money on prescriptions that don't work (the last one I completely finished [initial bottle was discounted via coupon] would have been well over $300 thanks!) or cause side effects.

If you've read my blog or followed me on Facebook for any length of time, then you will have no doubt seen numerous posts about me trying to figure out how to treat my skin for the post-acne hyperpigmentation crap that I've been dealing with for years, as well as ongoing breakouts (thankfully, those aren't as common as they used to be).  So for the past week I've really been addicted to reading reviews on Sephora's website for a few products that have caught my eye.

The first one is Origins Brighter By Nature High-Potency Brightening Peel with Fruit Acids:

 And to go with it, Origins Brighter By Nature SPF 35 Skin Tone Correcting Moisturizer

The Out Of Trouble™ 10 Minute Mask To Rescue Problem Skin also caught my eye

The one product I know I like (I had a sample at the end of last year) and want to purchase is the Origins Clear Improvement Active Charcoal Mask to Clear Pores

Oh, how I wish Sephora was close to where I live!!  Or there was a Origins counter inside Dillards/Macys... I also wish Raisin Rack (local organic/health food store) would get the Argan Oil in again - I'm pretty much out of it and I really like it.

As for makeup and dealing with dark undereye circles, I'm thinking about the Smashbox Photo Finish Hydrating Under Eye Primer
I saw Leesha of XSparkage highly recommend it (click here for her video), and I'm always trying to find products to work to help concealer look smooth and last for a long time under my eyes.  ~I may or may not be strongly considering the airbrush machine she reviewed as well~

Have you used any of these products?  Any other recommendations?  Am I missing an essential product to help?

**nothing purchased...yet
**my opinions are my own
**not sponsored/affiliated

Monday, July 22, 2013

Spotted, Hauled...a couple, & Swatched - Sally Hansen Sugar Coats

**all items purchased by me

I've been meaning to get this edition of Spotted, Hauled & Swatched up for quite a while now...I just kept putting off taking the last few pictures I needed.  But today I finally did it.  So, as you can see by the title, I've got Sally Hansen Sugar Coats - this is actually the 2nd release of colors, which includes a few glittery ones.  Yay!  And just because, you'll get to see the one I picked up from the original selection again as well.  Oh, I've only seen this second installment of Sugar Coats at Walgreens so far, so I'm not sure if they are supposed to be exclusive or just slow in getting everywhere.

So, as usual, let's get started with the display picture:
I took pictures of the ones I wasn't planning on getting (no sparkle in these ones):
~Spare-A-Mint actually looks kind of close to Milani Aqua Splash (which I have)
~Red Velvet may (I'm not positive since there's no swatch on the display) be similar to Milani Spoiled in Fuchsia  (click here for wheel swatches of the Milani's)

And now for the ones I did get.  I bought these during 2 different trips to Walgreens:
 210 Royal Icing
220 Treat-Heart and 230 Pink Sprinkle

And of course, swatches (including the one I purchased from the initial release):
Lick-O-Rich, Royal Icing, Treat-Heart and Pink Sprinkle

  • These are all 2 coats on the wheel (but Royal Icing and Treat-Heart take 3 on the nail to look good)
  • Lick-O-Rich is the only one I've purchased without any sparkle/glitter
  • Royal Icing has pale pink sparkles (essentially the textured version of Sinful Colors Cinderella)
If I see Laughie Taffy and Gummy Grape on a good clearance price, I may consider getting them since they are different from all the other colors I have.  ~~EDIT: I am not going to be picking up any more Sally Hansen Sugar Coat polishes - the formula absolutely does not wear well on me at all! As in, less than one day and it was chipping off.~~  I have a couple of oranges already, as well as mint/teal and fuchsia pink and those ones all contain sparkle, which I do prefer.

Are you over the textured trend yet?  I'm finding I have to be more in the mood for them than when they first came out.  If you do like the textures, do you prefer matte, no-glitter shades or do you like added interest?

**all items purchased by me
**my opinions are my own
**not sponsored/affiliated