Monthly Archives: March 2014

Week 4: My favorite Untried Challenge mani!

The husband was traveling for work for pretty much all of March, so of course my extra alone time was used to play with my polishes! Bored? Paint your nails! Lonely? Paint your nails! Such a great excuse 😉

So this was the perfect time to practice using my new nail art brushes! I finally got a set for my birthday, and I’ve been scared to use them. But it wasn’t that bad! I certainly need some work drawing lines, but this actually ended up being my favorite manicure out of all my untried challenge manis.

I used two brushes (one thicker, one thinner) to draw on a simple plaid pattern. I also (surprisingly enough) have never used my matte topcoat, so I put that over the plaid nails. I figured it’d be too hard for me to do all 10 fingers that way, so I did a glitter accent nail and used the bright purple accent from the plaid to paint my pinky and thumb.



And here’s a completely unflattering close up of the plaid:



Excuse my dry skin and cuticles – I had been lax in my lotioning and oiling. After seeing these pics, I definitely amped up my skin care routine!

Here are all the polishes I used (all untried of course):



Plaid nails:

  • Base color: Zoya Bevin – a really pretty light green with blue undertones
  • Lines: first, I painted on two thick lines vertically down one side of the nail using Julep Valerie (a very pretty opaque hunter green with gold shimmer)
  • Then I drew on two thick lines horizontally at the base of my nail using OPI Gargantuan Green Grape (a light green with yellow undertones… I know there are some batches out there that look more teal-blue, but I have the almost light lime green version)
  • And then I took my thin striper brush to paint on one vertical line and one horizontal line at the tip of the nail using Orly Frolic (a beautiful bright purple… almost a radiant orchid shade)
  • Lastly, I mattified it all using Essie Matte About You. It worked great, but I did need a thicker coat of it.

Glitter nail – China Glaze This is Tree-Mendous. I think it was a part of their recent holiday collection. I used 3 coats then 2 coats of topcoat (my beloved HK Girl) because it thinks topcoat is really yummy and eats it all up.

Pinky and thumb – Orly Frolic.

Now, I did notice that my matte top coat wore down after a day or two in spots. I had to reapply it to keep it matte rather than shiny. Does that happen usually? Or is that just my topcoat?

Anyways, I love this manicure and hope you like it too 🙂 This was the last of my untried challenge manicures for the Nail Challenge Collaborative, but I love using my older and untouched polishes so I think I’ll try to continue this as much as I can!

Check out the others:


Nail Challenge Collaborative Week 3 – Untrieds

Spring is sort of here. The weather here is schizophrenic… almost 60 one day, then snowing the next. Despite all that, I wanted to get in the spring spirit. I’ve seen all the speckled candy eggs in stores and remembered I had a perfect nail polish to match!

I bought Geode, a beautiful piCture pOlish, a long time ago after admiring it and waiting for it to be restocked on llarowe. Aaaand then I never wore it! But NCC to the rescue – it has now been lovingly graced upon my fingertips! It’s a baby blue packed with royal & navy blue small hex glitter and almost micro gold glitter.



Please excuse the small chip on my pinky – I took pics a few days into this mani. But I do love this polish, and I’m sad it took me this long to wear it! I had been thinking about doing some nail art on top, but I love it as is.



This is 3 thin coats – perfect for the amount of glitter I wanted! The formula is perfection, and I love the subtle gold glitter shimmering throughout.


The Nail Challenge Collaborative: Untrieds Week 2

I’m not as thrilled with my second run at the untried challenge. I like it, but it’s definitely not my favorite.

First, in sunlight (actual sunlight – woohoo! What a nice reprieve from the long, grey cloudiness in Pittsburgh):


I did have to cut my nails down after some continued peeling was happening around the edges. So back to nubbins!

And now inside lighting:


I used:

  • Base color: Julep Celia – a gorgeous chrome/metallic teal with hardcore shimmer that was really hard to capture in the pics.
  • Stamping plate: MoYou London Suki Collection 01 (pic to follow)… yet another amazing image plate from MoYou! I can’t get enough!
  • Stamping color: Essie Good as Gold – a perfect gold chrome polish that I finally broke down and bought, specifically for stamping. My pinky didn’t quite transfer the whole image, but that’s likely because I took a little extra time to figure out where to place it.

Again, all untried polishes and an untried stamping plate.


Gorgeous, right?! As you can probably guess, I used the top left corner images using the fan and flower branches. I love MoYou’s full image plates. This was my first time playing with them though, so I think I could use some practice getting a good image. I’ve seen that some people use a cutout of a nail image to figure out the best areas to stamp… maybe I’ll try that.

Anyways, pretty but not my favorite.

See what the other NCC ladies are doing!


The Nail Challenge Collaborative: Untrieds Week 1

I joined my first challenge! I was so excited to be invited to join The Nail Challenge Collaborative (which will henceforth be named the NCC for brevity’s sake!) by Stephanie from A Little Polish. She’s a fellow Pittsburgher and a talented lover of nail art as well! So if you haven’t seen any posts from the NCC, it’s a group of nail art bloggers who do 4 manis/month in a previously chosen theme. And I’m now one of them! Woo hoo!

The theme for March is “Untrieds,” which got me really excited because I have a huge pile of untried polishes and a whole file of untried manicure ideas and techniques. So this is a great excuse to get off my lazy butt and actually accomplish some of them!


This is a whole lot of untried goodness for me – all untried polishes and leopard print, which I’ve never done before! Shocking, right? I feel like everyone and their mom has done leopard print, but not me… until now. I had read that it was super easy to do, but it always intimidated me. This challenge has made me put my big girl pants on and finally do it! I think it came out awesome too 🙂 It truly was easy to do – messy is actually a bonus here, which totally worked for me haha.


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