Blue

Dior Saint-Tropez + Gradient

I have a ton of polishes in two shades: red and aqua. And I also have only two Dior polishes as well–in red and aqua. I ADORE both polishes. (The red polish is the one I used in this video a few days ago).

Of all the aqua polishes I own, I repeatedly come back to Dior’s Saint-Tropez. Sadly, I don’t think you can find it anymore. I ended up buying it on eBay a couple years ago, and even back then it was hard to find. That being said, I just love it. The formula goes on like butter and it self-levels to a perfect finish. Just a lovely polish to work with.

(The red Dior polish I love, Rouge 999, is still for sale, though. The formula has been updated, but it’s the same color).

Anyway, this is Dior Saint-Tropez…

After painting my nails with Saint-Tropez, I thought I’d try another gradient. So I added Julep Monaco to the tips with the gradient sponging technique shown in this video.

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SquareHue Rio Box + GIVEAWAY!

As I mentioned in a previous post, I’ve been subscribed to SquareHue for a few months. So I was super excited to receive an email from them asking if I wanted to do a short review of their Rio collection for May 2014 and also giveaway one of the boxes! Of course I said yes!

SquareHue is a monthly subscription where you receive three polishes each month. I love that the polishes are full size (as opposed to the smaller Julep bottles), and they are also 5-free (no formaldehyde, toluene, DBP, camphor or formaldehyde resin). They currently have a special where you sign up for their newsletter and receive a surprise box when you order your first box. So, if you’re new to SquareHue, you can get 2 boxes your first month!

So, I’m going to walk you through the box. First of all, they package them really well so that nothing is damaged during shipping…

And as you clear away the packing material, you get your first glance at the colors of the month. Usually I receive an email a few days before the box arrives that includes the “reveal” of the colors for the month. But sometimes I purposely don’t look at that email so that I can be surprised when I open the box. :)

The Rio collection for May includes three vibrant colors inspired by Rio de Janeiro, Brazil…

The first polish I tried is Ipanema, a shimmery gold-yellow. I’m not usually one for yellow polishes, so this didn’t stay on my fingers too long, but I can totally imagine it for some awesome nail art. One thing to note: I did have to do four coats of Ipanema to eliminate VNL (visible nail line).

Next is Copacabana, a sheer blue polish with glitter. Upon opening the bottle, I saw that this was a sheer polish. So I actually painted a couple coats of a SquareHue navy polish that I received a few months back before applying three thick coats of Copacabana. Like most glitter polishes, the removal was a pain, but it’s a striking glitter. I think I might try this one next time over the same navy polish, but apply it sparingly to just the tips of my nails for a bit of glitter. That would be so pretty!

And the last color is Leblon, an emerald green metallic polish. I’m also pretty picky about metallic polishes because I don’t like to see brush strokes, but I think this polish would be awesome around Christmas time. Maybe some white snowflakes stamped at the free edge of the nail?

All in all, a pretty fun box! As with any monthly subscription box you run the chance of not liking the selections they send you each month. I will admit there have been some hits and misses in the past, but I usually love most of the polishes and what I don’t love can be given away to family or friends. In this case, I think I’ll hold onto all three polishes because I think they’d be good to have around for different nail art looks, and I don’t have any colors or formulas quite like the Rio collection. :)

So do you want to win the Rio box? Just fill out the info below for a chance to win! :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Essie Find Me An Oasis

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Not sure how I feel about this pale blue color from Essie. It’s certainly beautiful, but on my super pale hands, it looks rather ghostly. I don’t tend to enjoy extremely light colors, but thought I’d give this one a try.

What do you guys think?

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Deborah Lippman Big Blue Note

Lots of questions about this color. I’ve worn it in a few cardmaking videos recently. Color is Big Blue Note by Deborah Lippmann. Interestingly, this is 6 days after application. Granted, I hadn’t done much because I was taking it easy (back issues), but that’s amazing for 6 days! I used Sally Hansen Triple Shine topcoat. It bubbled a bit, and it dulled after a day, but it really held up well!

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Girly Bits Cosmic Ocean

Today’s manicure: two coats of Julep Eloise (navy), with one coat Girly Bits Cosmic Ocean. :)

The above photos were taken with my iPhone the morning after I painted my nails (in natural light). Here’s a shot with my big momma camera (Canon 50D) taken the night before right after painting my nails (desk lamp)…

And one the next morning in natural light with the big momma camera…

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