Wednesday 19 November 2014

Primark P.S. 3D Nail Polishes

Primark PS 3D Texture Nail Polishes Swatches and Review Red Orange Grey Silver Blue

I have an exciting little review today of these new (as far as I know) textured glitter polishes from the P.S. range in Primark.

Wednesday 12 November 2014

Barry M AW2014 Gelly Nail Paints - Mustard, Cocoa and Chilli

Barry M Gelly Nail Paint for Autumn Winter 2014 in Mustard, Cocoa and Chilli - swatches and review

Oh Barry M I do love you. Their range of Gelly polishes is so popular, and for good reason - great colours with an easy formula and a high shine finish. And now they've added some exciting new Autumnal colours to the collection, with a warm and spicy theme that couldn't be more appropriate for this time of year.

Thursday 6 November 2014

Barry M AW2014 Classic Nail Paint - Ballerina

Barry M Classic Nail Paint Ballerina Swatch and Review

Hola my fellow nail polish enthusiasts, today I have another swatch for you in the shape of Barry M's Ballerina Nail Paint.

Wednesday 22 October 2014

Color Club - Girl About Town Collection

Color Club Girl About Town Nail Polish Collection Fall Autumn 2013 Swatches and Review

Before I start, I wanted to explain the long break between posts. It was my birthday a couple of weeks ago and as a special treat I went to hospital to have a knee operation. Obviously this wasn't ideal but if you've ever been on the wrong end of a waiting list you'll understand. Needless to say, between the painkillers, the physio and the crutches it's been a little tricky to polish and even harder to take any photos. Hopefully I'll be getting back on track soon - assuming the incoming wintery weather doesn't slow me down!

Anyway enough about me, I wanted to kick off with an autumnal collection from one of my absolute favourite nail polish brands. Color Club is an American company, and it's not easy to find in the UK, which is such a shame because everything I've tried from them has been amazing. I picked up this box set of six polishes and a top coat at TK Maxx a little while ago but I believe the Girl About Town collection was released for Fall Autumn last year in the US, and is still available here. These aren't your average Autumn colours either, and there's a nice variety of finishes too.

Sunday 5 October 2014

Revlon Parfumerie Scented Nail Enamel - Balsam Fir, Italian Leather, Spun Sugar

Revlon Parfumerie Nail Enamel Polish Varnish in Balsam Fir, Italian Leather and Spun Sugar

Now I'm not one for letting seasonal trends dictate what nail polish I wear, but this just sort of happened. A nice coincidence.

Saturday 4 October 2014

Kiko Nail Laquer - 279 Yellow, 338 Light Lavender, 385 Pastel Blue

Kiko Nail Polish Review and Swatches 279 Yellow, 228 Light Lavender and 385 Pastel Blue

Today I have a quick review of the Kiko polishes I bought recently. Kiko have an amazing selection of colours and I had a hard time narrowing it down to just three. I decided to go for three creme polishes to fill a few (possibly imaginary) gaps in my collection! The bottles only have a number on to identify the polish but I looked up the names on the Kiko website and have included them as well.

Friday 3 October 2014

Sephora Formula X - Solar Flare

Sephora Formula X Nail Polish in Solar Flare from Liquid Crystals collection

I picked up my very first Formula X by Sephora polish while on holiday in Barcelona. Solar Flare is part of the Liquid Crystals collection and is described on the website as a 'pink micro-glitter in sheer strawberry'. This polish looks really delicious in the bottle, a vibrant pink-red base stuffed with a glass-fleck, golden pink shimmer, and thankfully this all translates beautifully to the nail.

Sephora Formula X Solar Flare swatch
Sephora Formula X - Solar Flare

Sephora Formula X Solar Flare swatch
Sephora Formula X - Solar Flare

The formula was lovely. I used two coats in these photographs and this gave an even, opaque finish. There is a slight hint of visible-nail-line in a couple of pictures but this was only seen in direct sunlight and really not that apparent in reality. As you can see, at certain angles the micro-shimmer in this polish catches the light and you get that gorgeous golden sheen.

Sephora Formula X Solar Flare swatch
Sephora Formula X - Solar Flare

Formula X polishes are fairly pricey (I paid around 15€) but at least the chunky bottle and stylish lid give it a premium feel. In case you were wondering, the large black cap comes off, and there is a simple round brush handle underneath. The brush is great, it's nice and narrow so you can paint really precisely around the cuticle, but still spreads out well to cover the whole nail.

Sephora Formula X - Solar Flare

Whilst the polish looks great on its own, I thought I would test it over a base colour. Since it's a jelly formula, it is possible to layer this over other colours for different effects. First I tried it over a coordinating base colour, Nails Inc - Piccadilly Circus, which helped erase any suggestion of VNL whilst staying true to the original Solar Flare colour.

Sephora Formula X Solar Flare swatch
Sephora Formula X - Solar Flare (1 coat over Nails Inc - Piccadilly Circus)

Next I used Solar Flare over a black base, which let the fine glitter stand out. This was actually trickier than it looks because although the polish is a jelly, it's quite an opaque jelly, so it needs to be applied very thinly to allow the black to show through.

Sephora Formula X Solar Flare swatch
Sephora Formula X - Solar Flare (1 coat over a black base)

Finally, I used two coats of Solar Flare on its own and topped it with a matte top coat. I love this effect! It looks a bit like soft suede.

Sephora Formula X Solar Flare swatch
Sephora Formula X - Solar Flare + matte top coat

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(As far as I know, Sephora do not ship nail polishes to the UK, so these are ones to look out for on holiday)

Thursday 2 October 2014

Beauty Haul in Barcelona - Kiko and Sephora

This summer, after graduating from university, my friends and I decided we deserved a holiday. It was a last minute affair, I'm not quite sure how we decided on Barcelona but I'm very glad we did! Not only was it a fantastic chance to go sightseeing, drink some sangria, chill out on the beach, drink some sangria, and eat ALL the tapas (washed down with sangria!) but it was also a great place to shop, and I did my best to squeeze a bit of that in too. The background to these photographs is a sundress I bought in the Pull&Bear sale for less than 8€ - bargain!

First off, we arrived at Las Ramblas and were sitting down for breakfast al fresco, when I spotted a black and white sign more exciting than any big yellow M! So whilst my friends were enjoying their coffees I snuck off to Sephora and gazed round at all the glittering stands before I set my sights on the Formula X display. There were a lot of beautiful and unusual polishes, unfortunately the price was not so pleasant (14.90€) so I restricted myself to just the one. I eventually decided on this gorgeous red shimmering number called Solar Flare.

Sephora Formula X Nail Colour in Solar Flare*

Of course I couldn't go to Barcelona and not stumble upon a Kiko shop. I know there are a few of these shops dotted around England now but I'm yet to see one near me, so this was my first visit. At the front of the shop was a display featuring their summer collection, Life in Rio. I picked up the Sun Lovers Blush compact in 03 Brazilian Pink, described by Kiko as a "multicolour blush with an adaptable finish". One side is a soft, cool-toned pink (my go-to shade) whilst the other is a marbled peach and yellow combo. The packaging is also really pretty, the compact feels nice and chunky and features a decent mirror.

Kiko Limited Edition Sun Lovers Blush in Brazilian Pink

Kiko Limited Edition Sun Lovers Blush in Brazilian Pink

Next I found myself browsing the lipstick stand. Apparently I'm on a mission to start a nude lipstick collection, having previously stuck to bright pinks. I opted for one of their Luscious Cream lipsticks in the shade 500 Shell Rose. Yes the formula felt lovely and creamy, yes the colour is a flattering peachy nude, but can we just talk about the packaging? Look at that holographic tube! I'm no lipstick expert, but this is definitely the most exciting stick of lippie I've ever seen, even the bullet is engraved with the Kiko logo. I know you shouldn't judge a product by its packaging but I love it so much, and can't believe it was so inexpensive.

Kiko Luscious Cream Lipstick in 500 - Shell Rose

Kiko Luscious Cream Lipstick in 500 - Shell Rose

Kiko Luscious Cream Lipstick in 500 - Shell Rose

Finally, the nail polish. I'd heard a lot of good things about Kiko nail polish and had been given a couple as gifts but I was very excited to see their vast range of colours for myself. I love the idea of giving customers sticky tape to test the polishes (I didn't want to ruin my holiday manicure!) and it helped me narrow down my selection to these three pretty creme colours; 279 - Yellow, 385 - Pastel Blue and 338 - Light Lavender.

Kiko Nail Laquer (L-R): 279 Yellow, 385 Pastel Blue, 338 Light Lavender

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*Last time I checked, Sephora will not ship nail polishes to the UK, so I'm afraid the only way to get hold of these is to travel :(

Tuesday 30 September 2014

Welcome to my blog, farewell to summer

Hello and welcome to the first post of Hair, Nails Etc! As you can probably tell, I'm fairly new to "blogging" and to be honest, I'm not exactly sure what I'm doing. But hopefully I'll pick it up as I go...

Although I've been toying with the idea of starting a blog for some time now, I'd always talked myself out of it thinking that I'm not much of a writer, nor photographer. I have been randomly posting nail art (and the occasional hairdo) to Instagram for over two years now, but more recently I found myself taking lots more pictures, more regularly and becoming more interested in the latest products and polish releases. Yesterday something clicked, and I decided the time had come to bite the bullet and get started on this blog.

I chose the name of the blog, to ideally reflect the content I'm planning to publish. So expect lots of nail polish, (simple!) nail art, swatches and hauls, broken up with my ramblings on hair care and perhaps the odd pretty lipstick.

To finish off, I wanted to include a few nail pictures. Since Autumn officially began last week, and the past few evenings have felt distinctly chilly, I thought I would do something completely unseasonal and show you my favourite manicure of the summer!

This was my first attempt at leopard print, and I decided to use some of my favourite bright polishes - the Ice Neon collection by Models Own. The neon colours stand out nicely against the pure white base and black rings, and I like the subtle contrast between the matte white and the shiny black.

I started with a base coat and then used two generous coats of Models Own White Light to give a smooth white background, which I then topped with one coat of Rimmel Matte Top Coat (old-style bottle shown in photograph).

Next I used a small dotting tool with the Ice Neon polishes to make rough 'blob' shapes all over the nails. I used two colours per nail and tried to be sparing with the blobs, if you add too many there won't be enough room to add the ring shapes and it would look too crowded. I went over the spots a second time to intensify the colour.

Once the spots were dry (neon polishes dry quickly) I used the Models Own Artistix Nail Art Pen to make small 'C' shapes around each spot. Finally I used an extra small dotting tool to make small dots and curves in the remaining white space. No top coat was used as I wanted to keep the matte effect of the base colour and the shine on the black polish. 

Overall I was happy enough with this design, considering it was my first go at leopard print. I absolutely love these neon polishes and will try and keep using bright colours for as long as I can - probably until I start Christmas manicures (yes I just said the C word!)

I hope you enjoy my blog, please come back again soon. And let me know if there's anyone else out there who likes to ignore what colours are seasonally 'appropriate'!