Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thirsty? Drink Some Glitter.

I am obsessed, I mean really obsessed with glitter. I can't get enough of the sparkle in my life. So in the next few posts you are going to be bombarded with nails I've recently done featuring glitter. Lots of it. My secret weapon to make glitter really pop is using super fine glitter and gel polish - any of popular brands on the market like Shellac, Gelish, Mani Q will do the trick.  Get creative with your layering...and the results will be amazeballs. 

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Nubar Gelicure - Blue Hydrangea

I've been doing more and more gel manicures with Nubar's Gelicure products. I love how shiny they stay. Not sure if they'll beat out Shellac or Gelish, but they are definitely in the race.

Here we have Aisha's nails polished in Blue Hydrangea gel and Crystal glitter fade from the tips to about mid-nail. I love how this pastel color pops on her tan skin.

It made me happy to see how happy she was with her nails.  And that, right there, is my goal.

Nubar Blue Hydrangea Gelicure

The Inspiration

Monday, November 7, 2011

Getting Catty

Over the last two weeks, I've done a couple of sets of "special occasion" nails. Let's start with Halloween. Vanessa was in town from LA for the KISS FM boat party.  Her costume? Cat Woman. That's pretty much all I needed to know to get inspired and work a little nail magic.

We layered Chanel Graphite polish with black tiger, or should I say "cat woman" stripes.  The look was glitzy enough for Halloween, but cool and on-trend enough color-wise to ensure she wouldn't feel like a freak the next day and want to take the design off. 

Chanel Graphite on Vanessa

The Inspiration: Cat Woman

And then there's my BFF, Annie.  She swung by on her birthday to get the royal treatement (nails & a spray tan). She wanted bold...and pink. The choice?  Nubar Hot Pink polish.  The design?  Another set of "cat woman" stripes.

Nubar Hot Pink on Annie

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Les Jeans de Chanel

Just when I was getting concerned that I didn't have enough blues in my polish collection, Chanel goes ahead and says they are debuting a line on Fashion's Night Out (September 8) inspired by my favorite wardrobe staple: denim.  The three colors are Blue Rebel, Coco Blue and Blue Boy.  I want them all.  Here's a a sneak peek at the colors.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Mermaid Dragon Effect Using Chanel Peridot Nail Polish + Glitter

I've officially graduated from the beauty academy. This Friday I take my bizarrely long and overly intense California manicurist license exam. I have to bring a freaking model with me to demonstrate my skills and on top of that there's a 100 question written exam.  I never would have thought that I'd be headed in this direction at this point in my life - it's a totally different path than I'm on at my day job.  And I love my day job.  But there's something else out there for me.  A beautiful beast that needs to be fed with lacquer, glitter, nail art, luxurious lotions and sweet scrubs.

On my last night of school, a classmate gifted me with this gorgeous bottle of Chanel Peridot nail polish. The bells went off in my head when I realized I had a loose glitter that was almost identical in color.  All I did was paint with two coats of the Peridot (using Orly bonder as the foundation) and lightly dip an eyeshadow brush in the glitter and dabbed on the tips of the nail. Sealed with Seche Vite and voila!

Monday, June 27, 2011

International Beauty Show Las Vegas

I knew it was going to be insane....but I was not quite prepared for how over the top this show actually was. Last week, the Las Vegas Convention Center was transformed into a three ring beauty circus - with full on blaring club music and pseudo strippers on stilts.

Every nail vendor under the sun was present including the big dogs like OPI, CND and Young Nails. I can say for certain the biggest trend hands down is UV gel polish.  Every brand has got their own version. Before the show, my only experience with gel polish was with CND Shellac and Harmony Gelish.  It's hard to tell the difference between formulas because they all essentially look, feel and cost the same.  After some exploration and a couple of seminars and demos I wound up buying a gel line from Nubar and Young Nails.  I think both companies are doing some amazing things with nails and bringing some much-needed freshness and creativity to the industry.

The wildest, craftiest, craziest nails beyond my imagination were on hands everywhere I looked ....and I fit right in with my rainbow jungle cat mani I did with CND Shellac "cream puff" gel and various Konad polishes and plates.

Competition nails from the "mythical" theme category

My rainbow jungle cat nails

Stilt walkers
More nail insanity....

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Carnaval Nails: San Francisco Style

Each May, just after Cinco De Mayo, and right before the frenzy of other street fairs that hit in June, San Francisco holds the best Carnaval celebration north of Brazil. Masses of floats, food on sticks, drummers and women shaking what their mama gave them are tightly sandwiched between street vendors, kids and neighborhood gangsters right smack in the heart of the Mission district.

My dear friend Annie dances with her family and friends every year in the Loco Bloco contingent. This time around, she warned me that their group color scheme was neon yellow, silver, gold and white aka "Shining Star" theme. How demure, I thought!  The fair warning got my creative juices flowing and a concept for her manicure was born.

Three coats of neon yellow nail polish, 8 gold tips and 20 stars later, we have the finished product.

The nails

Annie the "shining star"

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Shibuya! Neon Spring Nails

WARNING: This nail art is not for the faint of heart.  Or the demure girl who only gets her nails painted with Essie Balet slippers or a french mani (blech!)  They are for badass chicks.  Others need not read on.

The Inspiration...Blazing Neon Lights in Shibuya, Tokyo.


Thursday, April 7, 2011

It's Not Halloween, but this Black and Orange Looks Awesome

I've been meaning to post these nails for over a month!  Where has the time gone??  I have to start blogging again.  So here's my latest entry...

This was done with CND Shellac in "Tropix" and a Black Kondad design.  Plus one huge swarovski crystal on my index finger.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

I celebrated yesterday to beat the crowds on V-Day.  My bestie at Dun Up Boutique had a nice little shindig at her store featuring her cool clothing, shoes and accessories.  The icing on the cake?  She put me to the test and had me lined up with 8 Valentine themed manicure nail appointments.  Wowsers!  I got busy with some Shellac, Gelish, Konad and good old fashioned OPI. 

Afterwards, I went with my honey to the restaurant "Range" in San Francisco.  Definitely the best service I have ever experienced.  The food was fantastic too.  Coffee rubbed braised pork shoulder over grits & greens...yum.  The dessert was so-so. Chocolate souffle that was too heavy on the bergamot.  The waitress noticed our 1/4 eaten dish and promptly took the charge off of our bill.  Well done. 

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Valentine's Day Soiree @ Dunup Boutique

Single, married or somewhere in between...every girl needs a cute outfit and their nails done before V-Day, right?  Come check out Dunup Boutique for some pre-Valentine's Day fashion, treats and manicures. 

When: We will be kicking off the fun on Sunday, February 13 from 12 - 5 pm 

Where: Dunup Boutique 3340 22nd street at Guerrero, San Francisco, CA

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

CND Shellac, Meet a Cheetah

My latest obsession is UV gel nail polish.  It's p-h-e-n-o-m-e-n-a-l.  The problem is that I only have three colors right now because there's a shortage in the market. I need MORE!

Now normally, you are not supposed to use gel polish with any other formulation of polish.  I took a risk and decided to layer CND Shellac in "Tutti Frutti" with a black Konad cheetah design.  It worked!  No peeling, chipping or bizarre reactions so far. 

This is the manicure I gave Sarah last night.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Happy New Year - Michael Jackson Style!

New Year's Eve inspired lots of glitter.  I painted my nails with Essie "Licorice" and dumped loads of black and silver micro-glitter over my nails while they were still wet.  They looked great for the first night.  The next day...not so much.  Their glory faded because I did not use a top coat (I thought the top coat diminished the sparkle so I decided to forgo it).  It wasn't my original idea, but the finished product reminded me of the King of Pop circa 1980's with his glimmering socks and black getups.  I kind of liked it.

Going Ga Ga for Bad Romance

Named after Lady Ga Ga's song "Bad Romance" (Ga Ga rah dah dah, dah dah, duh dah dah) this Lippmann Collection polish stunned me in the bottle at Barney's.  Deep plum with shimmery flecks and chunks of purple glitter.  Thought I'd set it off with some gold stars.  On the nails I think the base is a bit too deep to show the true beauty of the polish.  Looks almost black.  Like to hear it?  Here it goes: