Monday, April 30, 2012

NOTW: Perfect Peach

Happy Monday Night!

If you all looked at my post yesterday about my Ulta purchase, you already have a sneak preview for the nails I am about to show you all.  If not, here's a link to yesterday's post, or you can just keep on reading.


I think this type of nail design is called color blocking, but it my version may be different because they sections are not really blocks.  But anyway, I was really excited about this.  Like I said yesterday, I am finally glad I found my perfect orange.  This is Tu-Lip Service by Ulta.  It's a glittery orange-peach that has a little bit of a gold hue to it in some lights and in the bottle.


For this notw, I have two coats of Tu-Lip Service "wedged"     between Seche Clear (basecoat) and Seche Vite (topcoat).  The color really is pretty opaque, but when the sunlight hits it plus the use of my camera, it does look like the smile line is showing a little on my index and pinky fingers.  But it's hardly noticeable in real life.

I think another really cool thing about this nail polish (well all of the Ulta minis) is that it is the perfect size.  I have always complained about OPI's minis and that they are extremely tiny.  But these cuties are 7ml.  They have the perfect brush as well.  I feel like it's one of the nail polish bottles that allows you to get all the nail color out, and minis are especially hard to do that with.  Not this one.  I mean, if Ulta sold all their polishes this size for like $1.50 or $2.00 my nail polish collection would probably have three times as many nail colors as it does now.

As much as I like the little bottle, this color really is pretty enough for a full bottle.  But until Ulta makes one, I guess it's just me and the little guy for now.

Oh, and lest I forget my accent nail.
I took step by step pictures on how I did it; however, this is already a really long post, and I am kinda tired and still have history work to do, so I will post a tutorial later on this week.

But if you still want more nail polish designs, just check out some of my other posts in the archive section on the right side of my blog.

Here are some more pictures of this week's mani:



Sunday, April 29, 2012

Ulta Skittle Nails

Hey Everyone,

It is Sunday!  Yesterday I got up really early in the morning to drive two hours to perform a three minute song for a state competition.  As tired as I was, I drove all the way back.  But when we got back in the city, my mother and I decided to stop at Oberweis to buy some ice cream.  So anyway, long story short, I decided to stop at Ulta.  I had $3.50 off coupon for a while now and decided to use it.

Here's what I bought:

This is a five pack mini nail polish called "In Bloom."  The colors are exactly what I have been wanting.  I cannot tell you how long I have been looking for a perfect orange.  These are the perfect colors for summer!

Four of the five colors are glitters and one is an opaque orangish-coral.  This colors are  (in left to right): Snap-Dragon Me Down, Voted Most Poppy-ulur, In a Daisy, Tu-lip Service, and Fleur-ever Yours).

All the glitters are pretty sheer, so for my skittles swatch, I decided to layer them over one coat of Opi's Alpine Snow.  I just have a tiny bottle of the white polish, so the white coating underneath the base color is not well done, but I didn't plan to leave this on all day.  Actually I have a new design on now.  So yeah, I apologize for the terrible nail job I did. 

Here is a sneak preview for the nail design I have on my nails now, and what I will be sharing with everyone tomorrow:

"Color Blocking"

Look for tomorrow's post for the full manicure!
Until then, <3

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Stirred NOT Shaken

So this is just a quick post to talk about actual nail polish.  I am taking a break from writing a 5 page history paper on the political development of Iran to tell you about this.  So it must really be important.

You know right before you paint your nails and you look at the nail polish bottle and it looks like the colors have separated?  For me it tends to happen with my light purples and blues where the darker hues float to the top, but every nail polish is different. 

Here's an example of a polish that I always have to shake two or three times before I can use it.  It's Orly's Snowcone, and not only does the polish separate really fast, but I spilled the bottle.  That's why it looks really gross on the outside.

Don't you just hate when the happens?

So anyway, what do you do to make the color come back to the original?  The easiest way would be to shake it.

I bet you all have heard this a thousand times, but DON'T SHAKE THE NAIL POLISH BOTTLE. It does actually make a difference.  When you shake the bottle, bubbles form.  Just like if you shook a bottle of water, you are going to produce bubbles.  Albeit the bubbles will not be as noticeable in the bottle, (especially when you paint your nails) but when your nails begin to dry, there will be tiny bubbles.

Sometimes a top coat, like Seche Vite, will take away the bubbles, but they will still look very unappealing.

So how can we prevent this from happening?

  1. Use a different nail polish
  2. Roll the bottle between your palms if the color is too separated
  3. Or, shake the bottle at least 15-20 minutes before you apply (I always shake around the time I use nail polish remover to take off last weeks manicure)
Trust me, you will see a difference.  However, you still might get bubbles if you paint your nails with a fan on high speed.  But, as long as your nail polish is "stirred" and not shaken, you nails should look as smooth as a freshly shaven calf =]

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

NOTW: Bright, Red, and Sparkly

I am really excited about the polish on my nails for this week.  My last nails were Water Marble, a play of off Gradient, and Ombre nails.  So for this week, I just wanted something bright, sparkly, fun, and girly.   And this is what I came up with: 

Taken on a beautiful April afternoon

The base color is this jelly red by Bon Bon which my parents probably bought for me when I was like 7 (this just proves, nail polishes really don't go bad).  So I don't have a name for it.  But it basically is just your regular red, except I think more pigmented.  And of course I used Seche's base and top coats to start and finish off this nail look.

On top I added one coat of Orly-Shine on Crazy Diamond.  I love this nail effect.  It is so easy to apply.  You don't have to worry about applying the sparkles in a specific way, just paint it on there like a normal nail polish and it surely will look amazing.  

The first picture above was taken when the camera was focused, and that is about the only time you will not see the sparkles in this Orly nail polish not sparkling.  Even indoors, the sparkles will catch some light and will just glisten.  The picture directly above was taken out of focused, but is the best visual representation for how the sparkles look in real life.  Can't you just see how awesome that sparkle looks in the bottle?

I think the best thing about this nail polish was that is was free.  I had one of those Seventeen magazine coupons that allowed me to get a free Orly nail polish from Ulta, but only from a selected assortment.  However, when I went there, the Ulta didn't have the correct options.  So the lady there just gave me this one!  I guess some of the best things in life manicures are free.

Until next time <3

Monday, April 23, 2012

My Glass Nail File

Readers, this is my beautiful glass nail file that use every time I do my nails.

My mother bought this at one of those craft fairs four or five years ago.  (I think it was $3, which compared to the prices now, is not a lot for a file).  At the time, I really wasn't that into nail polish, so I didn't pay any attention to it.  But a couple years ago, my mother suggested I use this for when I shape my nails.  Now it pains me---I literally cringe---every time I don't get to use this nail file. 

Basically, it's your regular glass file.  One side is more gritty (rougher) than the other, but I can't remember which.  I mostly just use the one with the diamonds on them because I can grip it better.    After I take off the previous nail polish, most of the time I wash my hands in warm, soapy water and go straight to filing my nails.  I don't know if that is the healthiest way to do it, but it works for me.  If it's been while since I clipped my nails, then I go ahead and take some clippers and then file.

I haven't been a fan of any other shape than the round nail look.  I did try a squarish shape (for pictures click here!) but it really wasn't even that different.  Almond nails always look cool, but I'm a little to conservative to try that look, so I just stick to basic shape of my cuticle and smile line.

All in all, this is THE BEST file that I have ever used, and I'm sure other glass files will produce the same results.  What is your favorite finger nail file?

P.S.  Connect Four!  This is my fourth post in a row, and I am really excited about that.

P.P.S.  There's a sneak peak of my NOTW for this week in that last photo.  So look for that one tomorrow (if I have any brain power left after I take the ACT).

Sunday, April 22, 2012

NOTW: Water Marble

Three days in a row, tic-tac-toe!  Yes, I have posted three days in a row.  What an accomplishment.
Anyway, I have a water marble design to share with you all today. 

Water marble in natural sunlight

I wore this on my nails for about two and a half weeks (I didn't have to take it off and certainly didn't have time to repaint them).  I have absolutely found water marbling to be really cool, but never got around to trying it...until now!  Hope you all like the final result!

Here are all the materials I used.  
  1. Finger Paints-Drawn to this Shade (you'd think I didn't have any other nail polish since this about my 5th post involving FP, but i just think it's sooo pretty)
  2. KISS White Nail Striper
  3. (Distorted) bobby pin
  4. A cup of SmartWater at room temperature

I'm not all that sure if the "room temperature" part is a huge must.  This was the first time I tried and it worked, but the room I was in was a little cold.  I probably could have drank the water and it wouldn't have tasted too bad, temp rise.  I started off by painting my nails with OPI Chip Skip and Seche Clear base coat followed by one coat of Finger Paints.

Next, I taped off my nail.  I'm sure if you're reading this post, you have already heard about how to tape off your nail for a water marble design.  I just used clear Scotch tape.

This is just a picture of my left index finger after I nudged from attempting to put the tape on my right hand fingers.  So, make sure your base color is completely dry.  It didn't really show up that much in the final result, but I still knew.  And that's what matters, right? 

Here is a picture of alternating coral and white rings in the water.  It spread pretty nicely and the polish was easy to design with. So happy I didn't have to experiment with a whole bunch like I've read about people doing.  Yay for luck!

This was just right after I had applied Seche Vite top coat, so there is still nail polish around my nail bed and on the cuticle left from after I took the tape off.  But, as you can see in the first photo, everything turned out all fine and dandy =]

Until next time (which will hopefully be tomorrow, because then that would make it four in a row *connect four*)

Saturday, April 21, 2012


I have never really been a shopper.  I just don't see the fun in it.  To me, when someone says, "hey, do you want to go shopping with me?" all hear is, "hey, do you want to walk around a store for an hour and try and clothes and then leave without buying anything?"

Now I know that's not really what should happen when a person goes shopping, but that's what happens when I do.  Today, my mother sent me to the store today with a giant gift card so that I could buy some new jeans and some shoes (I really do need some new ones, almost all pairs of both have a rip in them).  But all I could do is walk around, look at sale racks, grab things and try them on.  Either none of them fit, or they didn't have my size, or there was just something about them that I didn't like.  I went to THREE stores and didn't find not one thing.

Honestly, I need to get a personal shopper.  It's not like I don't like clothes or I don't have any fashion.  I just feel like it's a waste of time going to the store when there isn't a guarantee that I'll find something.  With a personal shopper, she could just buy everything for me, whatever is the latest style, and it would just appear in my closest, without me having to try it on.

See, that's another thing, I don't like trying to things on.  For example, on Sundays, I get up and put on my church clothes (skirt, blouse, stockings, etc.) and go to church.  But when I come home, I just leave whatever I have on on.  I don't like changing my clothes to get more comfortable unless I'm going to bed. So I'll find myself wearing the same outfit for an entire day just to avoid changing clothes.

I don't know where I got this perspective from.  My mother likes to shop, even my brother goes out to buy some new clothes and shoes.  I guess I spend too much time wondering about my upcoming test or something to actually enjoy the moments when I'm shopping.

But at least I don't have a problem shopping for nail polish, or else this blog would be non-existent.  And we don't want that, do we?

P.S.  If you have any tips on how to make my shopping experience better, please let me know. These jeans and shoes I'm wearing right now don't have but a few more weeks left...

Friday, April 20, 2012

NOTW: Sponged Gold and Berry

Happy Friday.  I think this post managed to make it within three weeks of the last, so I'm getting better.  Lately it's been so busy with school that I really only painted my nails twice in the last two months.  So even if I wanted to post more often, I wouldn't have anything to talk about.

But on a higher note, I am going to be posting more regularly.  I have realized that when I don't have a pretty perfect nail polish on my nails, I begin to pick at it during class and then become distracted.  Yeah, sometimes I get distracted from staring at the pretty nail color a day after I paint them, but it's not as bad as literally picking the color from my nails.  So really look for some more frequent posts, I'm serious this time.

For today's Nails of the Week (that were worn three weeks ago), I have a sponged on nail design.  I started off with two coats of Ulta's Fushiamania.   I then took a makeup sponge and sponged on Orly's Luxe over top.  At first I was going to do sort of a fade going up the nail, but I decided to just sponge the gold on the entire nail.  I actually like my right better, but I took this pictures about 4 days after I painted them, and the right hand had a few chips.

However, the chips obviously weren't that bad since I continued to wear this polish for the rest of that week and the next.  I had two test coming up, a debate for English, two papers to write and a presentation for Physics.  My life is everyone else's.

Sorry the picture is so dark.  It almost makes my hands look dead.  But I needed to hurry up and take a picture of my nails before any more chips happened and it wasn't very sunny outside at the time.  The homemade berry color is more vibrant and "poppy" in real life, and the gold glitter on top sparkles more in the sunlight.

SIDENOTE: I actually darkened Fushiamania with a good few pours of black nail polish because it looked too similar to China Glaze's Make an Entrance.  (Click here to see a NOTW of Make an Entrance)

I just cut a triangular piece from a round makeup sponge.

Apply the nail polish directly onto the corner of the
torn makeup sponge for best results.

Overall, this is a pretty fool-proof nail design.  If you are tired of the same plain nails, certainly give this a try.  All you need is a base color, a glitter nail polish, and a old makeup sponge.  I seriously got this one from my mother who bought it about 15 years ago, not even joking.

I promise promise promise that I will post more frequently.  I didn't have school today, so I might even post another nail of the week from last week, or maybe start on some of the "Other Tales" that my blog name suggests I will have.  Guess you'll just have to come back to see what the next post will be.  And yes, that just rhymed =]

Monday, April 9, 2012

NOTW: Stamped Flowers

Well, this is just a typical Kendra post: three weeks late.
Yes, I did this nail design right before my spring break, which was two weeks ago.  I think it was a Friday night and I had not yet decided what to put on my nails for the upcoming week. I then remembered the nail art stamping kit I purchased from Ross and decided to use it.

Here's what I came up with:

I specifically used the Salon Express Nail Kit (yes, the one advertised on T,V, all the time).  Honestly, I would prefer to have Konad or BundleMonster, but this was cheaper and easier to find.  It works pretty well too.  There were just two things that I was a little frustrated about. 1) The tool that you use to remove the excess nail polish scratches the nail plate (as you can see below) and 2) the full prints the nail plate comes with don't cover the entire nail.  I might try and show you something with the full nail designs, but I'm still working on one.

Used old gift card instead of scraper
 I used OPI Cajun Shrimp for the base color.  I am convinced that this is a close dupe for Finger Paints Drawn to this Shade (I have a nail design with that on my nails now, expect that in three weeks too, I guess, lol).  I'll probably do some swatches to show how similar the two are.
The white and black flowers are just polish from my nail stripers.

Flower is the top left one
So what did I learn from this:

  1. Cheap nail kit at Ross ($6.95, I think)
  2. Don't use the nail scraper provided
  3. Don't expect grand results from the cheap
  4. DO the white flowers first so that they don't have black residue left from the black flower (unless you want to clean after every use...but I'm just too lazy for that)