Today’s nails: who says nails can’t have a tan?

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Today I had a day off. For a while it looked like housework all day, but luckily I made it to the park, nails done, bikini on, ice cream bought and ready to snooze in the sun! Speaking of my nails…

I already have a bit of a tan going on, and today it was time to give my nails one too. It doesn’t get much better than Butter London’s ‘Sunbaker’. The perfect name for a perfect orange/tan colour. It also goes on so nice that I had to admit to myself again that splurging a teeny bit on polish is worth it sometimes…

I love this colour so much, that for the nail art bit I wanted a piece to make it real summery cute. To achieve that I chose 2 bows with a little bling that I found, of all places, at Poundland in Edinburgh a while back (ladies in the UK rush over there now). I used just a tiny drop of nail glue to secure them, and waited about 15 minutes before using my hands again. As these bows are a little bigger, you want to make sure they’ve set real tight otherwise they’ll fly off in no time!

Anyways, off to do some more snoozing!

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Today’s nails: a glittery sunset

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Today I finally found some inspiration again – this week, in case you were wondering, I was so busy with other things that I got my first nail art black out…the ideas weren’t coming at all! But luckily the slowly but surely improving summer here in Holland gave me a design to work out at long last.

I wanted a bit of a funky sunset to sponge on, and for that I chose 3 polishes: Sinful Colors ’24/7′, my go-to neon pink of the moment, ‘Crystal Clear’, some playful glitters, and Catrice ‘Ernie and Birdy’, a light yellow with a slight shimmer.

First I did just 1 coat of the yellow, but made sure it did cover fairly well. Then, I took a triangular make up sponge, cut it in half (so I can use the other half for a future design), grabbed some aluminum foil and a nail stick.
I added a blob of pink and a little yellow on the foil in such a way that it just touched. Then I pressed the sponge on it, and dabbed it carefully over each nail , moving left/right and slightly up/down until I got my desired ombre look.

After finishing each nail, I took the nail stick to quickly remove some of the excess polish directly around my cuticles and after that added one coat of the glitter. I cleaned up the rest of the mess after adding my quick drying top coat. Sponging is just so messy! But I do quite enjoy it. Summer’s now on my nails 🙂

Fuzzy polish, is it any good? Part 1

Fuzzy nails review

You can say it’s been months that I’ve been walking past these so-called fuzzy (Sally Hansen) or feathery (Nails Inc.) polishes, without ever buying them. Judging by the comments on one of my previous blog posts, I’m not the only one 🙂

One of the things I got in the US last week was, at long last, one of the above mentioned options. Sally Hansen’s Fuzzy Coat and Nails Inc. Feathers swatches are pretty much identical, with Nails Inc. being the one who originally launched this kind of polish (correct me if I’m wrong, this is the order I saw them coming in Europe!).

I decided to first take home the Sally Hansen version, because of the price. My pick of the day, #100 ‘Wool Lite’.

First I tried it on by itself, which was a little bland and no way near fuzzy. So I then took a pale  pink and did a coat of that, which instantly looked better.

One coat of the fuzz however wasn’t enough. I needed a second to actually get from just stripy to fuzzy. Only thing though…it just wouldn’t dry. At all. After over an hour, I still smudged and had to re-do 3 nails. After adding some quick-dry top coat I managed to tame things down.

The overall look once dry was OK. I could easily get out of the house wearing it, although it wasn’t the great new kind of nail art I’d gladly show off. That, in my world, means taking it off the next day. And so I did tonight. And it then became the difference between ‘yeah, OK’ and ‘hmm, no’ – it goes off horrible. Worse than normal glitter. Really wished I’d used my peel-off base coat for this, I spent over 20 minutes getting it off with strong acetone…

Oh well, at least I tried! I still like Sally Hansen for her basics, but this one won’t be replaced when it runs out. Instead, for part 2 I’ll be grabbing home some Nails Inc. Feathers to do a little product comparison. Watch this space!

Going nail polish shopping in the USA, part 1

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Hey ladies, just landed from a week of working in the greater LA area, so if you were wondering what I was doing…yup, that. And yes, also *that*. Which refers to using my 2 seconds of free time to raid especially Sephora and Walgreens for some new goodies!

I’m exceptionally chuffed for finding some Seche Vite top coat and Onyx pure acetone, 2 items I just can’t find out here in Holland.

The OMG This Is Too Cute bottles must be the 2 Hello Kitty ones. I admit to getting these primarily for the bottle… Apart from that, rather than getting lots of OPI and Essie, I opted to get cheaper funky options from Sinful Colors, Wet ‘n Wild and Elf. To top it off, some repeat Nails Inc. products.

Next week there’ll be another trip, so expect a new whole batch! For now, any special requests on manis using any of these colours or toppers?

DIY nail polish attempt #1

Helenhandbag nail dummy diy nail polish 1

Hello Friday Funday, time for a new little experiment!

I’d been reading several blogs by ladies crafting their own nail polish. Now I wouldn’t be a curious nail dummy if I didn’t give it a try…may I present to you…drumroll…the first ever Helenhandbag Nail Dummy polish!

I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t try to do something a teeny tiny bit different than others. If you read most blogs, you’ll see that they use clear nail polish mixed with old eyeshadow. I wanted a fancy top coat however, so I took a bottle of Claire’s gel-like top coat, and 3 different colours of neon powder that I recently found at a local arts and crafts shop.

With a small bit of paper, I created a little funnel that I held tight on top of the bottle. Then I tipped just a few small taps of powder, closed the bottle and shook it all up, to ensure the powder evenly distributes. If you drop too much powder in at once and don’t shake well in between, it’ll lump up. I repeated these steps just as long until I had the effect I wanted.

Helenhandbag nail dummy diy nail polish

Now the exciting bit: testing the polish! I took a simple white base polish and added 2 coats so that my nails were covered nicely. Then I started layering on my new top coat. I actually like it, woohoo! 1 coat gives a nice hint of colour, I’d consider this when adding it over a different colour. Over white I prefer a stronger effect, so I ended up doing 3 coats. Make sure you wait a good bit in between coats to avoid it bubbling and going all horrible.

All in all, I really enjoyed making a polish and I’ll surely be doing it again soon. The Nail Dummy recommends this to all and rates this as super duper easy!

Today’s nails: manicure at Tiffany’s

Manicure nailart inspired by Tiffany's

(Now with a better photo!) Today it’s time for a little ode to the place my engagement ring came from: Tiffany & Co.! Yes I’m a lucky little one 😉

Their signature mint green and white colours are very much on trend right now, all the more reason to do this nail design.

I started with 2 coats of Essence ‘That’s what I mint!’ and let it dry. Next I brushed on some top coat on all nails except my middle nail, and using thin tweezers added a large rhinestone on each nail. I guess you know what they symbolise 😉

Tools used for Tiffany's mani

Now the tricky part. At least, it is for me! With a dotting tool I outlined a bow using white nail polish. It did take me a bit to get it right…then I took a thin nail art brush and with a little extra polish, joined the dots in such a way that it became a bow. I can’t wait until my Born Pretty Store stick-on bows arrive! But I’m glad with this result as well. Last but not least: a touch of my swankiest shiniest top coat to seal it all in.

And there you have one seriously luxurious manicure!

Girls love nail polish sales!

Shopping spree results

I love having Fridays off work. I love walking into my local chemists on my day off to find nail polishes ‘2 for 1’ even better!

Went on a little shopping spree at my local chemist ‘Kruidvat’ (The Netherlands only) and helped them get rid of quite some Catrice and Essence polishes, Essence peel-off base coat and nail art brush kit. And I also walked into Claire’s to find they had a ‘3 for 2’ sale as well so picked up some new black/gold/silver rhinestones, gel-like top coats and gel-like black polish. So much to choose from for my next mani! Anyone care to give me an idea to try? Anyone want to see any of these items in action in particular?

TGIF!