Time for more loot from Cult Nails via Gloss48! I have had a bit of a lemming for Princess for some time, so when it turned up as part of the sale, I jumped on it. I picked up Spontaneous as well, largely on the basis of seeing swatches on various blogs.
Princess is a soft blue with coppery shimmer. Spontaneous is a slightly dusty purple with intense purple glitter, and it is -glitter-, not shimmer. I chose to largely eliminate the subtle sparkle by tossing on a Spectraflair holo topcoat. I bought mine from Piper Polish Co., and have used it before, but various other companies have produced them as well.
I love how these two look together. Baby blue and purple please me as a pairing. This is two coats of each Cult polish topped by one thin coat of Spectraflair. Observe the purple glitter in Spontaneous. That stuff is a pain to remove. :)
The formula on these was lovely, smooth and generally pleasant to work with. Cleanup was easy, and I think they both look nice with the rainbow shimmer. Of course, doesn’t almost everything?
Princess is a delightful faded baby blue, mellow and relaxing. The shimmer is even and visible on the nail, though the topcoat does a pretty good job of rendering it invisible. I was in the mood for rainbows that day.
Tomorrow will feature another a-england and the first of several Twee & Honey polishes.
Welcome to the land of parenthetical statements. Buckle up and enjoy the slightly dubious ride.
Over the last while, there have been quite a number of limited sale sites that have popped up. I think Hautelook was the first I remember seeing, but there are many more now. Recently, Cult Nails debuted some very pretty topcoats at a shiny new site, Gloss48 (on hiatus as of 9/16).
Like the polish (and Cult) fiend that I am, I bought all three of the available topcoats, plus a couple of other colors that either hadn’t made it to their recent sale (PRINCESS. You will see that soon.) or that I had passed on.
A few days later, I happened to be at Ulta, looking for a polish that matched my phone case (don’t ask; I just get wild impulses sometimes.) and found that they had a super-secret stash of China Glaze hidden at the back of the store, including the entire Bohemian collection. I decided that the horribly named Want My Bawdy would suffice as a color match. I put it on the next day, decided it wasn’t quite close enough, so I layered on a thin coat of Glitter Gal Hidden Violets, a purple/blue duochrome. Later, I checked my mail to find my Glossy48 order, and promptly tore it open and slapped Alter Ego on top. The results made me feel mildly ‘meh’, so I adjusted with some dots in a-England Excalibur, followed by Essie Matte About You. The shrinkage was epic.
Long walk for a short reward, eh? I also got massively over-zealous when cleaning up my ring finger. Three coats of Bawdy, one each Hidden Violets, Alter Ego, and EMAY, single-dipped dots.
Here’s a soft-focus image so you can see just how shiny Excalibur is. It is the perfect metallic silver, aces for stamping (did I mention I got a pack of Bundle Monster plates recently? I’ve been toying with them, but I think I need to get a better stamper.) and dotting or anything else for which you might want a one-coat silver.
For whatever reason, I didn’t take any bottle pics with this mani. I can’t honestly remember why, but that’s probably the NyQuil speaking. I finally caught the cold that’s been running around my social/work/convention-going group, and am writing under the influence.
Hidden Violets is a blue, purple, reddish, and occasionally you’ll see a flash of teal multichrome. Like all the polishes in that set, it’s extremely sheer and best used as a layering polish. Alter Ego is a pinkish-based golden shimmer that adds a patina’d look to what it is layered over. The combination of the two was rather underwhelming.
This is a picture of the Resident Kitten, Nona, playing with a toy mouse. It has nothing to do with nails, but she was being super-cute while I was taking pictures, so here you are.
Yep, that certainly was a manicure I completed and wore a few days ago. It was notably thoroughly all right. I enjoyed the dotting, but I don’t know that I’d actually use this combo again. It ended up feeling very muddled, though the colors involved were largely pleasing together.
I buy China Glaze mostly at Ulta, Cult Nails generally at Cult Nails (the topcoats are all available now, including two that were not involved in the Glossy48 promo), and I bought Excalibur direct from a-england.
Tomorrow: Something better.
Hey, hey! Long time no post! …I have no excuses. I’ve just been lazy. :) I have, however, been polishing and photographing, so I’ll be spamming you with a post every day for at least a week.
Let’s kick this off with Enchanted Nails Magic Mirror and Tough As Nails Lacquer It’s All Over Now.
Magic Mirror is a pleasant purple holo with a few random flakies that, in my bottle at least, did very little other than to make the finish a bit bumpy. The formula is dense enough that they don’t really shine through. It’s All Over Now is a grey jelly-cream with turquoise, purple, white, and iridescent glitters of varying shapes and sizes. Shown here is two coats of MM and three of IAON.
The above photo really shows the bumpiness of MM. I was not best pleased by that, though I think the color is beautiful and it has a very nice holo gleam. In looking at these again, I am irritated by how many cat hairs are visible. :P So annoying. I’ll have to be more careful of those in the future.
It’s All Over Now was reasonably easy to apply, though as you can see, it did end up a bit lumpy in spots from shoving the glitter around. I think it’s probable that it would be easier to work with in a full size instead of a mini.
This is Nona, helping me take photographs. Just in case you were wondering where the cat hairs were coming from. Yes, we certainly do have a bare concrete floor! :D
I like purple and gray together, so a gray with purple accents seemed pretty great to me. If I did this again, I might toss a Spectraflair topcoat over it.
I have bought my Enchanted Polishes from Llarowe, though I think this color is discontinued. Tough As Nails Lacquers can be bought on Etsy. I want her Breakfast Duo No. 1 sometime, too. It’s just adorable.
Coming up tomorrow: a-england Lancelot, which is amazing.
So I missed a day due to vacation and lazy! Yeep! I’ll have to do something extra next week. The mani I left with (Chanel Peridot) didn’t last four days, so I bought some cheap-but-surprisingly-decent polishes at H&M and Claire’s, so I should use those. One of them is a truly hilarious glitter that changes color in sunlight. Hopefully we’ll get some proper sun again so I can take some photos.
Today, however, I have a mani I did before I left — a-england Lady of the Lake and OPI DS Diamond with a bit of China Glaze Ink. It was my first attempt using scotch tape, and it went …acceptably well?
Both of these are scattered holos–Diamond is the lavender-pink, and Lady of the Lake is the violet. Ink is approximately the color of blue ink, and comes with a super-thin nail art brush.
I did this in a slightly silly way (as I said, it was my first attempt) — first, I painted a single layer of DS Diamond and let it dry, then I cut a triangular shape out of tape, slapped that on my nails, and painted Lady of the Lake around it.
Naturally, the edges came out a bit ragged, so I added psuedo-detailing with Ink.
This actually looked a great deal nicer in person than it does in macro. I got several compliments on it, and really enjoyed wearing it.
I bought DS Diamond at a salon (just a random one I happened to stop in because they had a lot of older OPI on display), Lady of the Lake directly from a-england, and Ink was part of the mad stash liberation/redistribution by the Superlatively Coiffed and Always Well-Dressed U. ;)
Is that all? Myths and stories can be as real as anything else. They can inspire and broaden your worldview and take you over forever, if you let them. I loved certain of the King Arthur tales when I was a child, and a book called Castles brought many of them to life for me, along with Beowulf and Grendel, and others. I’m not entirely sure what happened to that book; it may still be in a box in storage somewhere, or it may have been given away or sold at some point along the way.
a-england creates beautiful, beautiful colors inspired by myth and legend. She had a sale on the Legends collection recently, and I picked up a few things. The first two I have to show you (along with a relevant Zoya) are Galahad, a turquoise creme, and Morgan Le Fay, a gleaming silver-white that I used as a topcoat. The Zoya, Nimue, is the shimmery dusty purple.
I decided to attempt a sponged gradient manicure with Galahad, but my first attempt went rather badly, ending up significantly more textured than I might have liked. I wiped that off and tried again, this time with colors closer in tone and not quite so aggressively different in finish. Creme to metallic = not such a great idea. Creme to shimmer = a-okay! …or at least, more acceptable.
Nimue is a soft, dusty purple from last fall’s Mirrors collection. It’s described as a metallic “thistle” purple, and that’s pretty accurate for the color, but the finish feels more like it’s just got a very strong silvery shimmer. I painted my two accent nails (left pinky, right thumb) with two coats and sponged several times on all the others. It was easy to work with, though compared to the a-england polishes, everything feels difficult. :) As a point of trivia, Nimue is one of the names accorded to the Lady of the Lake. a-england also has a Lady of the Lake polish, and it is also a dusty purple, but with a holographic finish. You’ll see that one later. :)
Galahad is the most perfect turquoise polish I have yet tried. The formula is amazing, as is the case with all the a-england polishes I have; it goes exactly where you tell it to, dries faster than many, and self-levels. I used one coat as a base on all but my accent nails. The accents didn’t come out perfectly opaque, but I am inclined to blame my technique rather than the polish.
Morgan Le Fay is a sheer polish that I am more inclined to use for layering, but I’ve seen people wearing it alone and it still looks lovely. It looks shimmering and white in the bottle, but gleams silver once on the nail. It’s beautiful and illusory and all of this looked so much better in person. I used one coat over all my nails.
I bought the a-england polishes directly from their website — these do ship from the UK, so it might take longer than you might like, but shipping is free. You can also find them at Llarowe, if you don’t want to risk overseas shipping or your country isn’t among those she ships to direct. The Zoya came from Zoya’s site, though I do see the seasonal collections at Ulta, and sometimes stragglers lurk around for a while after.
Under the cut is my first try at a sponged gradient, this time with Galahad and Excalibur, a brilliant silver a-england polish. It didn’t go so well. I’m still working out the kinks on my technique, and may poke a few other tutorials for ideas.