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Polished by KPT Thermals: Personal Fave, a Mothers Day Gift and a BeautySofly exclusive!

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Goooooooood morning and Happy Hump Day! Shew! I’m lucky I’ve made it this far…When it rains, it pours. I was having serious computer issues earlier this week. And then my web host, Pressable, went down for a full day. The site is just now back up. It’s a sinking feeling, for sure. So while this post has been ready…I haven’t been able to share it until now.  But enough of that, let’s talk about these three beautiful polishes crafted by Polished by KPT …each are special in their own way.

This first one is special because it’s a personal favorite of Katherine, the owner/architect of all things KPT. And I must say…this is a new favorite of mine as well! Color Me Purple is a medium lavender with shimmery flakies when warm (thumb, pointer and middle fingers). When cold, it’s a gorgeous, rich royal purple (pinky and ring fingers). Katherine describes it as a semi-tricolor because mid-transition you can catch a glimpse of orchid (which you can see on the tips of the “warm” nails). It’s super sparkly in the sunlight. I love this! My swatch is three coats.

Polished by KPT Color Me Purple

Next up is Vanda, it’s special because it can only be found at BeautySoFly. It’s a soft baby blue when warm that changes to a shimmery, medium orchid purple when cold. Again, I dipped my pinky and ringer in cold water, but you can definitely see a natural gradient on the other nails at the free edge. I used three coats. Gorgeous!

F.U.N. Lacquers Luxury Duo Set Swatches and Review

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I made it to Friday! Shocker. This week was killer. And next week will be rough also, so don’t be surprised if you notice I’m off the grid for a day or two. But I’m definitely doing my best to keep up. :) Today I have the beautiful Luxury Duo Set from FUN Lacquers. Yuin, the brains behind the brand, pretty much busted onto the indie polish scene last year…which is no small feat considering indie-land is quite saturated at the moment!! But she’s made her mark. It’s innovative ideas like the silver coated flakies in this new duo that are keeping her on top! The Luxury Duo includes two shades that are really much more than they seem. And right now you can get a deep discount for her 24th birthday! 24% off from 18-25 April! Just use discount code BIRTHDAY2014. :)

Yuin notes on her site that Pay Day “is NOT a glitter polish!” It contains real, silver coated flakies which are cut finer than your traditional glitters. The result is a gold metallic sparkler with a smooth finish. It’s stunning really! I used four coats for opacity. My photo doesn’t do it justice…my camera almost focuses TOO much. In real life, it looks like solid gold. It really reflects the light and it’s amazing!

FUN Lacquer Pay Day

Bling it On is a silver spectraflair holo polish with a rainbow-y foil finish. It’s much brighter and finer than Pay Day. I love the softness and the coverage…yet it’s still very reflective and blingy!

Brushstroke Nail Art with Misa Sunny Side Up Collection Polishes

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It’s hump day…Shew…the first two days of my work week have felt like an eternity. I’m looking forward to the weekend already! At least we have nail polish. Am I right? It’s a good escape. So today I have a little something from the Misa Spring 2014 Sunny Side Up Collection. This collection is a great mix of expected and unexpected shades, all with a fantastic formula. I love Misa’s variety because it forces me to try something new.  Having said that…I didn’t go too crazy. I made some super easy nail art using two polishes from the collection.

Misa Sunny Side Up Brushstroke Nail Art

Here are all six shades that make up the Sunny Side Up Collection. They look pretty together, don’t they? If you want to see full swatches, Vampy Varnish has great shots here. The base polish of this nail art is Loveliest of Lilacs and wow, it’s amazing! You know the feeling when a polish is just a pure happy joy to apply? (my husband says I’m crazy) But really, I’ve said this before…but it’s the same feeling I get when I write on an inflated balloon with a good ballpoint pen. (and now you say I’m crazy.) LOL. Well, hopefully someone out there “feels me”. Loveliest of Lilacs is a punchy, bright lilac…my absolute fave of this bunch!

Misa Sunny Side Up Collection (Spring 2014)Next I used Cherry Awesome Blossom, a cool, medium pink, to create the painterly strokes with my current favorite nail art brush: La Corneille Golden Taklon Mini Liner Brush (7350) (see it here). It’s inexpensive…around $4. I’ve seen them at JoAnn Fabric Stores and Hobby Lobby. It’s perfect for making quick, whispy strokes like I’ve done here. I dabbed my brush into a blob of polish on a plate and started from the outside of the nail and quickly stroked inward on the diagonal. This is a seriously foolproof nail art method. I got TONS of compliments on it. Most people thought the were printed wraps.

NCLA Jet Setter Collection Swatches and Review

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Happy Monday! I hope you all had a productive weekend. I spent all of Saturday as a spectator at the my daughter’s first track meet of the season. And Sunday I spent futzing with my new camera lens (and my taxes). Today’s pretties are the four polishes in the NCLA Jet Setter Collection. These lacquers are packaged in special NCLA 40′s steamer trunk themed boxes and my samples arrived with a boarding pass. How fun is that?

NCLA describes Mile High Glam as a bright bubblegum pink. I can’t do any better; the description is dead-on. It’s a fun smooth creme with a great formula. I used two coats.

NCLA Mile High Glam from the Jet Setter Collection

Next up is Let’s Stay Forever, a clear, light blue. This one had a slightly runny formula, but was even and opaque in three coats.

NCLA Let's Stay Forever from the Jet Setter Collection

Beweled Dragonfly Nail Art with OPI Muppets Most Wanted Collection…and Experimenting with a New Camera Lens

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Lots of experimenting in today’s post. First, if you follow me on Instagram, then you may have seen my behind-the-scenes photo editing pic where I lament the agony of making my skin tone look the same in every pic of a swatch post (while still getting the polish color accurate). If you’re a blogger, you probably know what I’m talking about. Same camera, same settings, same lighting, same pose, same angle…one pic has yellow skin and the next is completely washed out depending on the color of polish. Photography is definitely my biggest challenge as a blogger. Anyway, I bought a new lens for my Canon T3i and I used it for today’s pics. I LOVE the lens, but I’ll have to do some more futzing before I decide if it’s good for swatch pics. If you’re interested…I’ll tell you more about it at the end of the post. But first, let’s get to the nail art!

OPI Disney's Muppets Most Wanted Collection Nail Art

So the second experiment is a textured pattern using glitter polish. The main polishes used are from the 2014 OPI Disney’s Muppets Most Wanted Collection. There are eight shades in the collection (press release here). If you want to see swatches, The PolishAholic and Chalkboard Nails have fab ones (of course!) The base is a magical shimmery, sparkly rich blue called Miss Piggy’s Big Number. I do believe this is a dupe of Chanel Bel-Argus (GASP!)

OPI Miss Piggy's Big Number from th Disney's Muppets Most Wanted Collection

Super Black Lacquers Spring 2014 Releases

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So I got these beauties awhile back and they’ve been patiently waiting their turn. Super Black Lacquers (SBL) is a brand that I want to swatch the second they arrive. I’ve been so impressed with everything that  Natalie Dee has created so far. Her Spring release includes five new shades. Except for the green, I swear Natalie is channeling my brain. I truly love her aesthetic.

This first one is epic. Like I’m completely in love with this polish! The Haymaker has a dark purple base filled with neon red glitter. The combo is gorgeous and one I’ve not seen before. I seriously can’t stop looking at it. If you can only get a single SBL polish…this should be it. My swatch is two coats of polish and one coat of topcoat. 

Super Black Lacquers The Haymaker

The Grackle is a deep, shimmery, green-blue, sparkle in a black base. This has to be inspired by the bird! It’s space-age-y in the best way. The formula was really nice. My photo doesn’t do it justice. It looks like a car with a slightly glittery, almost mirror-like paint finish. This is two coats of polish and one coat of topcoat.

Super Black Lacquers The Grackle

Zoya Awaken Collection (Spring 2014) Swatches and Review

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Ahhhh…it’s finally starting to feel like Spring around here! What a crazy winter! At least last season’s insane cold makes me even more grateful for the light, springy polish collections! Today I have swatches of the Spring 2014 Zoya Awaken Collection (original press release here). I love the soft, but punchy, rainbow and the mix of cremes and shimmers!

Dillon has got to be my fave. I’ve never been a green polish fan, but I love the mints! This one has a beautiful silver shimmer. I used two generous coats for opacity. 

Zoya Dillon from the Awaken Collection (Spring 2014)

Dot is a soft pink creme. This was originally released as part of the Zang Toi Spring 2014 Collection. I’m all about pretty pink cremes, so no complaints here colorwise! This was a bit sheer and a little streaky at first. I used three coats for my swatch below.

Zoya Dot from the Awaken Collection (Spring 2014)

Hudson is the purple version of Dillon. It’s a medium lilac/lavender shade with silver shimmer. I thought the formula was perfect and I love the clean, purple result! My swatch is two coats.