Posts Tagged 'nails'

Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure

Complete Salon Manicure? You mean, including suspect looking pieces of grot on the floor and generally unfriendly staff, making you feel like you’re part of a production line of cattle? Hrm, maybe that’s just the salons I can afford to go to! That’s where Sally steps in, making DIY mani/pedi’s (or at least the polish part) easy, quick and complete.

I stumbled across this bottle in a good old fashioned Priceline-peruse, looking for a polish that wasn’t too expensive, was long lasting and came in a shade that was appropriate for my new job. Bright corals and reds I had, something a little more subdued, not really.

Then I found the Sally Hansen stand, with the flashing NEW sign above this Complete Salon Manicure and my purchase power was piqued. The fact that there was three dollars off the range helped too, I’m sure! (Normally about $16.95 I think) The Complete Salon Manicure claims to be everything you need for a perfect manicure in the one bottle. “All 5 Steps of a Salon Manicure in 1 Bottle; Base Coat, Strengthener, Growth Treatment, Color, Top Coat.” Impressive, Sal. The wider than usual brush made application a breeze, and multiple coats were easy to do as it dried quickly.

The first time I wore this manager-pleasing-yet-pretty shade ‘Shell We Dance?’ (a light, ballet-slipper pink) it lasted nine days before needing to be taken off due to some chipping at the edges. Yes, the tips had worn slightly, but it was only noticeable on closer inspection. Plus, undoing and doing clasps up all day does take a toll on the polish.

So, I’m back for a second round and extremely pleased with Sal’s efforts on my nails. Love the fact that I don’t have to worry about base and top coat too! ‘Stock up on the essential shades in this one’, I would say if you asked me.

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Chocolate; OPI Style.

I’ve succumbed to the last remaining month of winter.

Gone (for now) are my nails that alternated between brights and pastels, reminiscent of my summer jaunt in the US. My latest manicure finds my digits dipped in chocolate. Well, not actual chocolate, but OPI Chocolate Moose. Teamed with a top coat, it takes me right back to the sight and smell of glossy melted chocolate, ready for decorating, baking… or scooped straight from the bowl.

Mmm, fondue anyone?

Now the question is – will this sweet, rich colour sate my chocolate desire, or only further fuel the niggling cravings come 3.30pm?

A Little Bitta Colour!

It’s fantastic how the small things can really lift your mood when you’re feeling a little off or down… commonly verbalised with super articulate sounds such as ‘meh’ or ‘blah’.

A few days ago this was me, meh-ing and blah-ing all over town. A recent post from Primped’s Zoe Foster spoke of beauty maintenance routines, which left my heart a little heavy. What maintenance routine? Being overseas means mine has basically disappeared. My brows were out of control, nails long and scraggy (I didn’t bring clippers) and then there are areas we just should not even go into.

It may sound a little superficial, but the few weeks of feeling ‘unkept’ had taken its toll on me – and I would only have a fairly basic regular beauty routine. (Can’t imagine the high-mainty girls!) Sure, I was still using my skincare, but I needed a lift – and to get my nails cut!

So I headed out for a mini-tidy up. I say mini as that’s all my rapidly (rapidly, as in one of those out of control trains rapidly hurtling along train tracks to the broken bridge that are always on cartoons) dwindling bank account would allow me.

I got my eyebrows threaded (interesting experience – more to come) and my nails attended to with a $7 manicure.

I took along an Essie polish I had purchased that morning – Carousel Coral (US $8).

I basically skipped out of the nail salon. Having this pretty coral on neatly shaped nails x 10 was a joy to my eyes (and my de-fuzzed brows a joy to others’ eyes!) So glad I’ve got the bottle to re-do this, as I think it will suit the forthcoming California leg of my trip to a tee! It looks fantastic when paired with slightly bronzed skin. Keep it in mind for the Aus summer ladies!

Does a small tidy up help your mood?
Make you feel a little cleaner/neater?
Sure did for me!

Manicure Musings

It’s my first official day in New York City, and wow – it’s amazing! So much to look at, shop for and chow down on that I had to come back to the apartment by early afternoon and rest my weary feet. While Erin and I traipsed along the streets, we kept our eyes open for any cheap eats or salons. We figure the more areas we can get away with skimping on, the better. Better being more shopping dollars of course. And cupcakes.

One thing I couldn’t help but notice was the huge number of nail salons, most of which offer Mani-Pedi specials for $20. Yep, $20! (not including tip however – something I need to get used to fast).

So once semi-recovered from my sensory overload, Erin and I set out to find a cheap manicure, local to our Gramercy area. On the same block as the apartment we found City Nails, who do a manicure for $8 dollars. Cheap as (salt and vinegar) chips. I was excited at the prospect of a cheap fix for my scraggy post-flight nails, albeit very wary of dodgy (read: possibly unhygienic) practices of said cheap salon.

But I/my stingy side of the brain pushed these thoughts aside. Come on man, you’re in NYC! Live a little! A dirty clipper is nothing when you’re walking the streets of this gritty city! So I went ahead and sat down.

Inspired by the summer heat and my previous post about Chanel’s bright Tiffany-blue polish, I chose the closest shade on offer – Essie’s Turquoise & Caicos.

And it kinda went downhill from there. I’m fairly positive the tools hadn’t been washed with anything stronger than a little tap water, and when the first coat of the polish went on, it looked like it was barely there, except for the odd clumps. Hrmm, I smell a varnish thinning rat! At least she gave me three coats to bring it to a solid colour, (except in some parts – it wasn’t even.) After sitting down at the nail drying bar, my manicurist walked over and proceeded to massage (or jab..)  my shoulders. ‘Oooo, maybe this is the redeeming quality…’ I thought. But before I had even finished my sentence or begun to settle in to this rub, it was over. Literally just on four seconds. What’s the point?!

You get what you pay for I suppose!

It seems greener than the Chanel Nouvelle Vague shade, which is most certainly on the blue side of the spectrum.

I’m thinking this is somewhere between the Nouvelle Vague and the other unnamed Chanel polish that Primped wrote about – I think Essie’s Mint Candy Apple polish would just about match the newest Chanel on offer (without having seen that in real life).

This is a pretty out-there and bright shade for me, and while that was the point of the experiment, to you know, embrace the NYC sunshine and all things summery and bright, I think I would prefer the Essie Mint Candy Apple next time – it’s just a level or two more toned down and suits my love of neutrals and pastels more.

O.P.I Hong Kong Collection

As I rifled through my PRIMPED VIP package I spied the iconic thick, tapered black lid of an O.P.I nail polish. YES!

I do love these polishes, not only for the amazing every-colour-under-the-sun colour range, but for the quality formula of the polish, which for me, always performs well.

‘Chop-sticking To My Story’ was no exception. I would describe this colour as a ‘burnt-orange’. Definitely orange, but with darker undertones which take away the ‘bright!’ you expect with an orange shade. While not a colour I would usually pick for myself, I definitely found this a wearable and different addition to my nail polish wardrobe. I would suggest that this shade would suit girls who already have a (natural or fake) warmth/olive tone to their skin best.

Look how shiny! And no top-coat!

The eagle-eyed will notice my rush job. Sorry. Have to dash off to pick Maddy up from school. Apparently kids don’t like being the only ones left at the gate. I wouldn’t know… repression works well like that!

The new pro-wide brush splayed out over nearly my entire nail bed, which made application speedy and easy. I loved the formula, which was thick but spread like butter on hot toast. Only one coat was needed, as this baby packed a pigment punch. When I first gave it the ‘official’ trial run, I applied two coats and a clear top-coat, which I reapplied during the week. Super-glossy, strong nails that lasted about 8 days with only the slightest chip. Points, O.P.I, points!

Hrmm. The picture above looks a little too bright. Here’s one that I believe shows the colour a little more true-to-life.

Better representation of the colour without the bright light on them

The polish dries relatively quickly (no ‘dries in .32 milliseconds’ marketing gimmicks here) for a thick formula, which is handy for us gals who like to knock our freshly painted digits on anything and everything after painting.

O.P.I, you and your rainbow of colours are definitely alright in my books, and I look forward to adding to my (sadly small) collection.


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