Saturday, October 10, 2009
Still, I was rather surprised when I read this article about OPI and Dell on Engadget. I don't know whether as a woman I should be delighted or offended. It would be really cool on the one hand to immortalize your favorite OPI shade (though not all are available) on your laptop. On the other hand, it's annoying because other than announcing that this option is available, Dell doesn't really provide any details on the computers itself. Which is where I have a problem with it.
I'm not a super-feminist by any means, but I am (and I think other females should) well-aware that as the "lesser" sex, we may always be subject to discrimination. But it's also ok to be a powerful woman and still care about makeup and beauty because these things can make us happy on the inside. Am I making sense? I'm not trying to make this post into a huge political issue, but over the summer I got a bit angry over something like this.
You've all seen the commercials for the 3M Scotch-Brite Nail Saver Sponge, right? Ok, yeah it's kind of sexist but I bought one anyway to try because I had a coupon. Well, it turns out that it's not just a sexist commercial but the sponge is a piece of crap which makes the sponge itself kind of sexist. I understand that there's a whole marketing concept behind it to make this job easier for women but a) women aren't ALWAYS the ones doing the dishes, ok?, b) it's a lot easier to just wear gloves while doing the dishes to avoid the need for a stupid sponge and c) the "sponge," which is nothing more than two flimsy strips of actual sponge and scrubber glued to this awful foam that falls apart within three weeks of use, is just insulting. It's ok to market things to women because we DO have certain needs that are different. But please, don't insult our intelligence by introducing something that supposedly will make our life easier but is really worthless. It's sloppy manufacturing and it's rude and I hated that sponge and everything it represents.
I'm not the biggest Dell fan, but I wish they would release details about the laptops itself that will have the option of adding these pretty tops. Because yeah, it's kinda cool though it would be worthless to pay extra for a laptop that won't really do much. Anyway, here's the top for OPI's I'm Not Really a Waitress. I love the swirled effect because it really looks like nail polish and I'm not going to lie, if this were HP and the laptop had everything I wanted specs-wise I would definitely buy it. Though not in this shade.
PS: It does seem that these new laptop colors are available as an option on pre-existing Dell laptops so it's not like it's a special case. So really my argument only applies if Dell were introducing it as a special line so even though it's an invalid argument, it's a rant so it still stands =)
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
I'm a huge Essie fan but the colors I'm looking forward to the most is the new Orly collection. The world needs more green! Here is a glimpse at some Orly, Lipmann, and Essie fall colors.
Also, for any UK readers, check out this new drugstore brand called Eyeko. Non-UK readers won't entirely be missing out because they ship free worldwide! I'm already eyeing my order.
Saturday, September 12, 2009
This, unfortunately is one of the cases. Chanel, always the quickest to catch onto nail trends (completely sarcasm btws...what it makes up in lack of nail knowledge is amazing fashion at least) is releasing two GORGEOUS polishes in their fall collection. Actually, scratch that, just one. One is pink so we know it's going to be on the boring side but one seems to be the perfect light green! It seems to be very true to its name, which is Jade.
They've been gracious enough to allow pre-orders this time around so you can see pictures of the two colors here. However, the price has upped again since last year I believe, and this time it will set you back $25. Ouch. Just my personal opinion though but Jade may look like it will be worth it. Jade Rose, not so much.
Also, I know my posts have been lacking greatly. I still love nail polish and I still love blogging, I'm just trying to make some important life decisions right now. I loved blogging before my parents knew about it because even though I love my parents and I'm my own person and I make my own decisions, they are not exactly supportive of my polish love. Especially when they think it is interfering with schoolwork (trust me, it's not!). I think it's always hard when you think you have to compromise your beliefs and passions. Oh, and this whole transitioning-into-an-adult thing happening? Not fun at all. But I know people actually read my blog, so I am definitely not going to let this die!
At least I will have Jade to look forward to =)
PS: For a dictionary to all Rachel Zoeisms that will probably be popping up, here's a guide that EW.com compiled
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Sustainable Softness body lotion(this is going to be an extremely detailed review because I like details and because I'm merging my regular review questions with my mega moisturizer series criteria)
Quantity: 8 fl oz.m or 236 ml
Claims: For those seeking intense moisture, look no further than this body lotion that is 98% from nature. "Sustainable Softness" features nourishing shea butter, which easily absorbs into skin and leaves it feeling silky and smooth. Skin will feel instantly hydrated and sustain your softness!
My Experience: I like to use lotions for about a week before I make up my mind because it's a long enough period to notice any significant changes. My elbows have been super ashy because of the lotion I used while in DC (review on that later), but this lotion cured that in about two days. It does absorb into skin really quickly, and the especially nice thing is that the smell goes away pretty quickly. Well, it's a good thing for me at least, other people like scented lotions.
Good for body?: Absolutely, it doesn't have a super lotiony feel right after as it absorbs fairly quickly into the skin. I also noticed an improvement in my elbows, which is definitely the measurement of a good all-over lotion for my body. I usually only apply lotion once, which is at night after I shower. I'll admit it's mostly because of laziness but it also helps me weed out lotions that really aren't good for the long run.
Good for nails?: Even those the ecoTools new beauty line also has its own separate hand lotion, I found that this doubled just as well for hand hydration as it did for body.
- packaging- since it's in a bottle with a flip cap it's a good size for traveling, and it's not likely to spill.
- the ingredients- I'm not a cosmetic chemist but I am impressed by the number of natural products that I know are good for hydration and moisturizing that are listed. The first three products right off the bat on the ingredient list are Water, Sunflower Seed Oil, and Jojoba Esters (Wikipedia tells me that jojoba esters are derived from jojoba oil, so it's a good thing). Then there's also shea butter, cocoa seed butter, mango butter, aloe extract and algae extract. You'd think with all these butter ingredients the lotion would be heavier but it's actually not
- the consistency- as I mentioned above, it's not a very heavy lotion that just sits above the skin and takes a while to sink in (I like Aveeno but it's an example of a heavy lotion for me). It's thick and creamy like a real lotion and doesn't have a watery feeling like others, but it still manages to be quick with absorption
- the smell- since I opened it, my sister and I have been trying to figure out what the smell was. It's not an unpleasant smell, something really familiar though. After three days, I finally figured it out: it smells like fluoride to me. So understandable, I'm glad that the smell fades away after five or so minutes. Thankfully, it's not very overpowering and I'm sure my dentist will appreciate the soothing scents on my next visit but really, I'm just glad I can only apply this once a day.
Fun Facts: According to a green tip on the back of the bottle, if everyone viewed and paid their bills online instead of printing, we could keep over 18.5 million trees growing each year.
Blooming Planet body mist
Quantity: 6fl oz, or 177mL
Claims: This body mist instantly transports you to a blooming botanical garden with a bright and fresh floral scent. Refresh your natural wellness with this captivating blend of elegant floral blooms. Smell great and feel great, inside your world and out!
My experience: I'll be honest, I despise body mist. Walking into a Bath & Body Works is like a certain kind of torture, especially when they had their special Honeysuckle line. Not only am I allergic to honeysuckle, I'm also allergic to their popular cucumber melon scent. One whiff of either and I'm hacking and coughing my way into an asthma attack...for some reason both scents seem to permeate themselves into my lungs. Gross. However, Blooming Planet was smelly without being overwhelmingly so. In fact, I actually really liked it. I can't distinguish the individual notes, but the overall fragrance is really good and actually reminds me a bit of Elizabeth Arden's Green Tea perfume.
- staying power- it's not bad for a body mist
- scent- thankfully not too overpowering, and there's not a dramatic change in smell from when you spray it on to when it dries down
- size- it's a large bottle!
Conclusion: I ended up liking something I was expecting to hate, so I love being proved wrong. It just goes to show that there are exceptions.
Fun Fact: All of the products of the EcoTools are part of the 1% For the Planet coalition of business all around the world that have pledged to donate at least 1% of annual sales to environmental organizations.
Other items in the new EcoTools beauty line include a body wash, hand cream, and heel cream. Let me know any of you try these products and what you think! They're available in the U.S. at Walgreens and select Target stores.
Sunday, August 2, 2009
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Cuz here's the thing...most of the time, things that are more expensive are just more expensive. Sure, everyone loves a bit of Chanel nail polish, especially if they're in fabulous blue shades. But I would be broke and starving if my (very extensive) collection was all-Chanel. Not to mention kind of boring.
So yes, I'm going to give Wal-Mart a bit of a shout-out here. I used to feel guilty about shopping there all the time given all the controversy, but here's something that can soothe everyone's conscience: Walmart is not just jumping on the green bandwagon, it's invading, taking over, and controlling it. And not in a bad way, either.
Basically, Wal-Mart has taken steps towards creating a universal rating system that scores products based on how environmentally and socially sustainable they are over the course of their lives. And what Wal-Mart wants is what Wal-Mart usually gets. It's revolutionary and a bit scary how great their power is over the retailing world. Luckily, it's not just going to be a Wal-Mart exclusive, as they've invited Target (another fave), Costco (one of the loves of my life), Tesco, and others to join in this partnership. So really, the people who end up benefiting the most are the people. I really think that this wil force companies to look at their practices and maybe change them, even a little bit, to help save the Earth.
Read the full article from the NYT here.
The downside? I'm sure nail polish isn't exactly the best for the environment. In fact, many environmentalists are strongly against it. But, I think as long as you practice living green, you're allowed a few indulgences =)
Read the article from the NYT here
Thursday, July 2, 2009
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
I'm also filing everything in the MMS under Back to Basics, because I think moisturizer is really important, not just for your nails but for your skin in general. My skin would look so much worse without moisturizer and let me tell you, the skin under my eyes would look so much worse without fancy moisturizers (my mom says that the dark circles under my eyes make me look like a panda. I tell her that that's just the life of a college student). So, expect me to focus on general moisturizers as well as specific cuticle creams....though I think the latter is a waste of money and regular lotions can work just as well. I believe in the power of multitasking
Wikipedia, it is possible to create a generic version of petroleum jelly. So that actually is good news for sustainability purposes. I never really grew up using Vaseline, but I know tons of people who are obsessed with it.
Effectiveness as a moisturizer: Ok, here's the thing. Vaseline IS NOT really a moisturizer. Wait, what? Yeah I know it's confusing but Vaseline is actually a sealant and prevents moisture from evaporating. So no it doesn't moisturize and is not absorbed by the skin, but it does protect the skin. This is also why Vaseline is good for cuts and minor scrapes because it prevents bacteria from entering.
Good for body?: I don't really use it as a lotion since it's not a moisturizer, but it's good for feet. I also use it for my lips since I'm running out of Aquaphor.
Good for nails?: Yes! I do use this for my cuticles since they tend to get raggedly and it helps my skin from ripping more. It's also a good cuticle softener .
Price: The nice thing about Vaseline is that a little goes a long way. I bought a 1.75 oz travel one from Target about 4 months ago for 99 cents and using it on and off I've only gone through barely 1/4 of the tub.
Verdict: Given the price, it wouldn't be a bad thing to have around. I would just get a sample size (1.75oz is what I have, and it's a lot) since it's only 99 cents. I only bought it because I was hoping for a cheap eye makeuup remover but that didn't work on me. It works for other people though. But if you're sure you never need it, save your dollar, especially if you have stuff like Neosporin for minor cuts.
Fun Facts: petroleum jelly has a dissolving effect on latex....so that's my safe sex warning. Also, petroleum jelly is less expensive than glycerol, but it results in a greasy feel in lotions as it just sits on your skin. Therefore, more expensive lotions are more likely to have gycerol instead of petroleum jelly. If you buy a $10 lotion that has petroleum jelly but no glycerol, you know you're getting ripped off.
Monday, June 29, 2009
Today I was at H&M, and I noticed that they have nail polish now! I think it varies by store, since my local H&Ms back in California did not have them (maybe it's just a Galleria thing, since now that I think about it, they were both Galleria @ ____ malls). I'm on a strict no-buy, which is killing me but I thought I should share the love. The one I picked up and put down many times is called My Favorite Jeans and it looks gorgeous, a steely, sparkley blue. That would be my pick. Oh, and a baby blue one called Everlasting Emma or something like that. You know how blue thrills me so.
But please, stay tuned for more posts and pics from DC =)
Love & polish,
Saturday, June 6, 2009
Sunday, May 3, 2009
L'Oreal Cosmetics has announced that they are installing a biomass system at their factory in Libramont, Belgium where they produce many of their brands' haircare products.
The plant plant will feature an anaerobic digestion system that will capture methane from waste that comes from nearby cattle farms. When the system's installation is completed at the end of the summer, methane will be used to generate 85% of the plant's power. Even better is that this is just a single step in the cosmetics giant's plan to cut their factory and warehouse emissions in half by 2015 (based on 2005 levels).
Pierre Simoncelli, director for sustainable development at the company, said that the factory was situated in a cattle-farming area that would provide the slurry to power the new technology.
"We plan to start by using a mixture of organic waste and corn, but we should then be able to switch fairly quickly to just using organic waste," he explained, adding that the biomass power system should provide enough energy for 85 per cent of the factories' current requirements.
In order to meet their goal, the company will be installing additional onsite renewable energy systems like solar PV and solar thermaland buying more green power from suppliers.
The company also hopes to cut their water use by 30 to 35 percent in the same time frame by using rainwater capture and steam-cleaning technologies.L'Oreal is one of the biggest cosmetics conglomerates out there (it's akin to beauty products to what LVMH is to designer fashion), so it's awesome to see them put an emphasis on sustainable development. It makes me feel better as a consumer to know what I'm supporting when I'm buying their products too. Now if they could only continue their green support in polish form....
Sources via BusinessGreen & Ecogeek
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
I can't think of anything new to add, except hey! Check out my past forays into greeeeeeeeen polish.
And if we're going to be talking about checking things out, there's an amazing new blog out called Polish Our Planet, and I only wish I were creative enough to start it and format it the way it is! Polish Earthgirl (who I have just now nicknamed as PE) weaves in great eco-tips with amazing polish pictures.
Oh, and I just applied for an internship this summer for the NRDC. Here's to hoping I get it!
Finally, if you understandably want to stay in this weekend, check out this Best Movies on "Earth" list that We Are Movie Geeks put together. I would add "Wall-E" to that list for families with little kids that aren't interested by former American VP Al Gore, but definitely give Planet Earth a view. It's just absolutely stunning.
Anyway, in celebration of all things green, here are 76 little things to help fight global warming, brought to you by BeatGlobalWarming.Info
*these really all make a difference!*
- Plan car trips efficiently and combine errands.
- Turn off lights when you leave the room, and appoint a person to be the “light monitor” at home, school and work. Use natural light instead of electric light whenever possible.
- Decline a bag when buying only an item or two.
- Plant trees -- as many as you can. Donate trees at http://www.americanforests.org/planttrees/ And to celebrate an occasion, give trees at http://www.arborday.org/join/TICTIM/index.cfm?trackingid=306
- Print on both sides of the paper and reuse printed paper for scraps and notes.
- Use cloth napkins and towels instead of paper.
- Use electronic checking instead of paper checks.
- If you have a choice, take the car that gets better gas mileage.
- Use the Internet to shop, to reduce global warming both by using less gasoline and by making a contribution with your purchases. Go to: http://www.ourenergy-shopping.com/ and a percentage of all your online purchases from more than 700 participating retailers (including Walmart.com and The Gap), will be contributed for green energy credits automatically every time you shop.
- Read newspapers and magazines online.
- Insulate your hot water heater and hot water pipes, and turn down the heat on your hot water heater.
- Set your furnace 3-4 degrees lower and your air conditioner 3-4 degrees higher.
- Run full loads for your washer, dryer and dishwasher.
- Replace light bulbs with energy efficient CFL bulbs (compact florescent), and ask businesses that you frequent to change to energy efficient bulbs.
- Buy paper products made from recycled paper.
- Charge your cell phone in the car. Unplug chargers when not in use.
- Activate the energy saving feature on all computers and printers.
- Share a ride (car pool).
- Work from home; allow employees to work from home once or twice a month.
- Return empty printer cartridges to the manufacturer or store -- Staples, Office Depot, etc.
- Don’t buy disposable products.
- Fix or mend instead of replacing. Reuse as many things as possible -- recycle everything you can! Insist that recycling is offered at your place of work and home if you rent.
- Get removed from unwanted mailing lists at www.junkbusters.com
- Buy carbon offsets at http://www.nativeenergy.com/services.html
- Use a coffee pot instead of individually wrapped packets for groups.
- Use glass instead of plastic, paper or Styrofoam cups.
- Send an E-Card instead of a paper one.
- Buy bulk instead of individually wrapped products.
- Buy previously owned books, DVDs, videos etc., and rent a movie instead of buying it.
- Give away useful products instead of throwing them out.
- Make your next car at least 35% more fuel efficient than your current one.
- Take brief showers.
- Use light dimmers if you have them.
- Use reusable plastic containers instead of zipper-top plastic bags.
- Use a lunch box instead of a paper bag.
- Use a thermos or cup instead of buying throw-away juices or small plastic bottles.
- Walk a few flights of stairs instead of taking an elevator.
- Shut doors and air vents in unoccupied rooms.
- Drive 5-10 miles per hour slower. (N's note: Ok this is SUPER hard for me living in Southern California but I get amazing mileage out of my car even when I'm going at 65, CA's speed limit...and especially when I'm on cruise control, see below)
- Roll to red lights vs. using the gas and braking (it will save your brakes as well), and at any opportunity, use cruise control when driving.
- Save a piece of the rainforest at http://www.arborday.org/shopping/donations/orderrfr.cfm
- Install a water filter instead of buying bottled water.
- Wash clothing in warm instead of hot, and cold instead of warm water.
- Buy organically grown food and drink coffee made with organically grown beans.
- Shop at farmers markets and buy food grown locally.
- Buy reconditioned computers, printers, etc.
- Walk instead of drive for short distances.
- Keep your car tires properly inflated.
- Share this list with everyone you know, by E-mail of course.
- Buy music online and download it instead of buying the actual disc.
- Make sure your place of worship is green. Help them start or do more.
- Keep the lint pipe of your dryer clean.
- If you need an appliance, buy an “Energy Star” appliance since they are the most efficient.
- Take digital photos and only print the desired pictures.
- Send electronic bills instead of paper bills by mail.
- If your power company offers a green energy option, take it! Ask them to offer it if they don’t!
- Cut and paste an electronic file instead of printing a paper file.
- See or read “An Inconvenient Truth;” learn all you can about the climate crisis.
- Print only the parts of documents you need, not the entire document.
- Turn off heating and air conditioning units when you’re not home; better yet, use a programmable thermostat to do this for you.
- Bring your own reusable or recycled bags to the supermarket.
- Remove a few light bulbs from lights fixtures or banks of lights.
- Volunteer to head an effort to “go green” at your work, school, place of worship or any organization you belong to.
- Pray for others to follow your lead. (“When you pray, move your feet” -- African proverb)
- Send a Native Energy greeting card ($12) as a donation toward clean energy. http://www.nativeenergy.com/cards.html
- Make sure the gas filter and air filter on your car are clean and keep your car tuned up.
- Remove any heavy items from your car.
- Avoid rush hour driving whenever possible; better yet, take public transportation.
- Have your paycheck deposited directly to your account.
- Use propane or natural gas for barbeques and camping instead of wood or charcoal.
- Install an attic fan to ventilate your attic, and then insulate your attic.
- Install ceiling fans to help with both heating and cooling.
- Install weather stripping around drafty windows and doors.
- Turn off decorative lighting at night and ask stores you frequent to do the same.
- Don’t use wooden chopsticks! Either bring your own (plastic or ceramic) or use a fork.
- Wrap gifts in newspaper, magazine or other used paper product instead of gift wrap.
Sunday, April 12, 2009
I gotta say....this was not the easiest application (also sorry for the mess around my middle finger). It was thick and kind of gloppy and streaky. I normally think Borghese brushes are fine, even though they are SUPER thick but...for some reason this was not the best experience for me. It also dried incredibly slow, but that might just be because of the goopiness. It's such a gorgeous color though, very ladylike and prim. It was semi-worth the $4 I paid for it, but definitely not worth the $8 retail.
But anyway, happy Easter! I actually had my own Easter miracle today, I was talking with a friend outside his apartment when a hummingbird dropped from the rafters onto the ground. It looked dead and wasn't moving so we scooped it up on a piece of paper and moved it to a grassy area (I wanted to bury it but my friend shot that idea down cuz we didn't have shovels and we'd also probably get in trouble). But then the bird started to beat its wings and flew up and away. It was awesome! This was after like not moving for 5 minutes. Well, some might think that it hardly counts as a miracle but come on, that's so symbolic! Yes? No? Ok, well I choose to believe so.
I also made this amaaaaaaazing carrot cake with cream cheese frosting for Easter. Since we don't have a mixer I have to mix the cake mix (boxed cakes are genius!) by hand and it was exhausting! I whisked the water and eggs together (I just realized now I forgot the vegetable oil) first, and then whisked in the cake mix spoonful by spoonful slowly so I wouldn't get gross chucks. It's exhausting but worth it....at least until I can afford a KitchenAid.
Friday, April 3, 2009
But one area I haven't really gone green with is cosmetics. I'm guilty of throwing out empty plastic bottles, containers, even nail polish bottles when I don't need them for frankening. It's terrible, really, but also hard when you don't even know what you're supposed to recycle
Luckily, one company has really stepped it up. Origins now has a great program aptly called "Back to Origins" where you bring in empty cosmetics packaging of any brand to any one of their retail stores or department store counters and it will be sent to a central location where the bottles, tubes, etc. will be either recycled or used for energy recovery. In return, Origins will reward you with a free sample of any skincare item of your choice. It's really a win-win situation.
Here's what Origins has to say: "We believe that the more we collect from consumers, the more we can keep cosmetic packaging out of landfills. And we hope this program will encourage other companies into following our example."
I sincerely hope that this program becomes more widely adopted by other countries and companies as well! Sadly this program is so far only for the United States, as it mentions that it excludes Canada and Puerto Rico (which kind of technically is also US terriroty, but who am I to argue with semantics?). Even sadder, this also excludes Origins counters in the US located in Nordstrom's, which I don't understand....hopefully this will change.
To check out the whole program details and more abut Origins and the environment, click here.
Thursday, April 2, 2009
Barielle, the fab salon line that people (myself included) go gaga over their basecoats for, recently released a drugstore line. And I use the term "recently" loosely because I've been MIA lately (I might take it easy this quarter and only take 16 units instead of 20/21 units per quarter like I have been for the past year...understandably, I was a bit burnt out). All Lacquered Up already released the shades for their upcoming collection, but make sure you head over to a CVS and snatch up any of the older ones before they're gone!
Luckily, I was able to snag Date Night and Sneak-A-Peek. They are, without a doubt, the standouts:
Sneak-A-Peek is a gorgeous light dove grey with subtle silver shimmer. I don't have a lot of greys but I will admit this looked really nice against my tanner skin.
Date Night is just....amazing. I know green and blue are colors that people are really hesitant to try, but I'll be the first to encourage anyone to get this shade. It's the perfect dark green to compliment any skin color, with gorgeous olive shimmer to really make it stand out. I was afraid that the color wouldn't work for me because olive tones draw out the yellow in my skin (I really look terrible in olive green) but luckily on the nail it's different than how it looks in the bottle. It works a bit like camouflage... sometimes it looks darker, sometimes it looks lighter. The picture here, luckily, is the best representation of how it looks most of the time.
I've already gotten ansty with my purple nails. It's time to change them to silver and sleep =)
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
Yup....I'm wearing purple polish. For the first time EVER other than swatches...and even those are limited. It's very strange since I don't really have purple clothes. Normally I don't really match my clothes with my polish but I have been wearing black and white the past two days to make my purple neon polish stand out. I think I might...actually....like purple polish now.
Ignore the weird reflections too, I was scrambling to get this pic in full sun so I had to do some funky angles.
I actually have a one hour gap between classes and dashed home just to post this, but stay tuned...today will be a polish-productive day.
Friday, March 20, 2009
Anyway, you know those corny Disney commercials on TV that are like "Oh, get ____ before it goes back into the Disney vault...forever!" or "For the first time, released from the Disney vault..." Ok I mean I like Disney (my friends can vouch that I will valiantly break out into song if Mulan's "I'll Make a Man Out of You" comes on), but WTF is this "elusive" Disney vault? Actually since Disney controls the world they probably do have a literal giant vault guarded by lasers and everything.
Well, it looks like Chanel is taking a cue from Disney because they recently (aka today) sent out an e-mail about their "Dejavu Collection" that is launching on their website. Pretty much, it's a lot of their discontinued items that they're "rereleasing" (probably residual overstocks). Here's the link:
The cool thing is that it's constantly being updated. Currently for polish they only have Rouge Noir priced at $23, but they say to check back often, as more Chanel favorites become available.
I have two finals left but guys, seriously check out Nail Juice. It's a love-at-first site (hah! pun! get it?) Not only is it tech-savvy and available in other languages!! But also, Steph has an amazing and handy finishes description bar on the right hand side, something that I've always wanted to get around to but have obviously been too lazy to actually do. So thank you Steph, because now everyone can just use that as a reference! It's wonderful.
Ok, study break is over. Two more finals to go!
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Anyway, here's a picture of Gwen Stefani at Indian Wells watching Roger Federer play (she's a fan) with her baby Zuma =) You can't see Zuma's cute face in this one but you can see Gwen's AWESOME funky french nails- red with silver tips. Loveee.
I'm also so excited that Federer and his girlfriend (pictured above sitting next to Gwen) are having a baby! For sure in like 17 years that kid is gonna be a serious tennis competitor...I hope!
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Anyway, I was at CVS the other day and Loreal Double Extend Beauty Tubes macsara (I know, ridiculously long name) was on sale. The whole "tubing mascara" thing has really intrigued me so I decided to buy it. I was excited so I tried it as soon as I got out of the store in my car. The mascara part was all dried and cloggy and it didn't even coat the brush. I was puzzled but I walked back in and exchanged it for a new one. I didn't test the new one til I got home but lo and behold! It had the same problem. Since it was the weekend I e-mailed Loreal to see if it was just a bad batch. Their Customer Service was pretty quick in replying on Monday and asked if I still had the product and if I did, they'd send me a pre-paid mailing envelope to return it. I unfortunately already returned it to CVS, and told them as such. Here was their response:
Thank you for visiting L'Oréal Paris on the Web and for responding to our e-mail.
Our company makes every effort to provide the highest quality products for our consumers, and we want to know whenever a product is not completely satisfactory. If ever you are less than satisfied with one of our products, please save the items because we are eager to investigate any possible problems.
Thank you for making us aware of this problem. We hope you will continue to use our products with complete confidence and satisfaction.
So, really just another reaon to love Loreal: good CS. Anyway, since the mascara had a base/primer part before the mascara part, I figured why not, one eyelash is coated in white primer anyway so I put Dior Iconic over it and...well, I'll just let the results do the talking:
Please ignore my panda-eyes and frizzy hair
So....welcome to my first real off-topic post lol. I will try to not do too many of these stand-alone OT posts.
Saturday, March 7, 2009
But alas, they have been discontinued and replaced by NYC: In A New York Color Minute which is way too long and so I'm shorthanding it to NYC Minute. It's drastically smaller than the Glossies were but I will say that a) the cap is easier to handle and b) the coverage on the two I bought were amazing!
Also, NYC Minute has a color called Chinatown, which remarkably looks similar to an old NYC Glossies fave....oh and I'm sorry, I got my NYC Minute blues mixed up. The color in the next three photos are of NYC Minute Chinatown, NOT West Village (this is what happens when you don't get any sleep)
Yup, the bottle is much smaller....3.4 mL less which is quite a significant amount considering the price has stayed the same.
Here is Chinatown and Midnight on my nail....can you tell which is which?
NYC Glossies Midnight is on my index & middle finger, NYC Minute Chinatown is on my ring and pinky finger
Here's the REAL West Village, the other blue. Where Chinatown/Midnight was a darkened navy, West Village is a true dark blue. Love it!
I was actually really impressed with the pigmentation. It only required one coat to be opaque, but they are shown here with two coats each and are at their best. Even though I will shed a small tear for the Glossies, I will admit that the Minute line in terms of application and stuff is a definite UPGRADE.
I've been super busy with school, LSAT classes and looking for an internship. Finals are next week too, so expect posts to be trickling in haha.
Thursday, February 26, 2009
But, sometimes sheers can translate well into opaque polishes. Such is the case for Black Radiance's Barely Pink
It's a shimmery, GLOSSY (no top coat in this picture!) soft pink color with shimmer. 1-2 coats make for a gorgeous sheer, 3-4 coats make it opaque and oh-so-pretty. I love Black Radiance, don't forget that it's an unbelievable steal at $1.99 at some Rite Aid stores!
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Even though I give SH a lot of flack, it's easily one of the best and usually affordable drugstore nail polishes. That's because while I adore cheapo brands, Sally Hansen usually has a lot of variety, especially of late. But really, sometimes pink is just pink. And I say that as a polish whore with about 50 different shades of the same pink or red. But then again, I easily every color in the rainbow, even the colors I can't see.
Anyway, I LOVE Sally Hansen Lacquer Shine in Dahlia. It's one of the most multifaceted, "sophisticated" (read: not crazy BLING BLING IN YO FACE) glitter topcoats around. It's multicolored, fine shimmer with tiny gold flakes. I tried it over, what else, a pink Sally Hansen color, and fell in love. It was cloudy that week so I don't have fabulous pictures but you can see the results:
See what I mean about the sophistication? It's so subtle, but wonderful.
As with all good things though, there is a downside. Dahlia is not a clear glitter topcoat, so it will slightly alter the base color to be a bit lighter. So, it works best with lighter colors and black. You can layer anything over black.
Here it is over a darker color, LA Flare Green (a beautiful green creme PS)
As you can see, the glitter also shows up a bit differently over LAF green. It's not unpleasant, but it does make a difference in color. That's really the only downside to this. But then I think about how great it goes over black and over lighter colors and I'm won over again. I'll have to play around some more but I'm definitely loving Dahlia.
Sunday, February 22, 2009
Anyway, I decided to share my "daily circuit," aka the websites I visit as soon as Firefox opens.
1. Gmail/iGoogle- I'm obsessive about e-mails...my best friend, my sister and I are email junkies, so I usually have a Gmail tab open 24/7 on Firefox (oh, and I save every email cuz I treasure your feedback!). I recently discovered the usefulness of having an iGoogle page too.
2. Celeb Gossip- I think I've mentioned how celebrity gossip is my guilty pleasure. I hit up three sites: Dlisted, JustJared, and OhNoTheyDidnt. I love Michael K, he's amazing. Jared is probably the nicest celeb blogger out there (although Trent from Pink Is the New Blog is so nice too!) ONTD usually takes a LONG time to scroll through but the best part are the comments, which range from hilarious and catty to ...uh did she/he really say that?
3. Real News- after getting caught up in the latest antics of celeb shenanigans, I have to remind myself that sometimes the real world sucks. I love the news and being caught up on the latest world events and stuff, but sometimes it's really depressing. I like to go to BBC to get caught up on all world events, and then CNN for more U.S.-oriented news. Then, just because I get homesick sometimes and I'm one of those that loves their hometown, I peruse Sacbee.
4. Nerdy Stuff- EcoGeek & Engadget...I love all the scienfic talk about the environment and even though I don't understand like half of the stuff that's said on Engadget, it's super cool. Because even though I would never have the need for a G-Pen F-509 digital tablet, it doesn't mean I can't appreciate it.
That's a lot of interneting. Though I love beauty blogs, they're a bit of an afterthought. Sometimes I get distracted by Wikipedia (btw, my school was the featured article yesterday! It was amazing...and damn I should have screencapped it) and my whole daily circuit gets fragmented. But usually, these are the sites I frequent the most and are usually on the top of my Internet to-do list.
So, what are the sites you HAVE to visit every day?
So I was talking to my sister on the phone today and she was telling me how she's been doing a lot of frenches lately because she discovered this method of doing french tips that's apparently amazing. Since I suck at them, she's going to teach me when I go back home for spring break. I'm excited for it!
However, until then, you guys are stuck looking at my crappy attempts at french tips. I did this one in the beginning of February during Chinese New Year and used those french guide stickers. It kind of worked but the glittery tips took forever to dry so they look kind of bad, sorry! I made the pictures smaller to spare ya'll the agony.
So without further ado, my funky french in honor of the year of the ox (and my aunt is an ox! But in China since ox's aren't that attractive they default to pictures of cuter cows...sorry I'm a bit ADD at the moment). I used NYC Glossies 227 as the red base and OPI Thrills in Beverly Hills for the tips:
Yeah...Thrills in Beverly Hills is a glitter topcoat so I had to use multiple layers and then smudged it. Since it was a busy week...I actually forced myself to have flawed nails for like three days. Oh, the horror =).
Good night/good morning!
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Anyway, as I posted yesterday, I decided to finally try these dry polish strips. Avon first came out with them about two years ago I believe, and it's been popularized by Incoco (you can find them at Walgreens) and Sephora.
So, I've been carrying around these strips for a good half a year because I was a little hesitant to try them. Even though they were on sale ($3.99!), the Asian in me hates one-time use products. I want to get the most of my money! But I was optimistic about these.
(Sidebar: I'll keep these picture small. Firstly, my camera kind of sucks as you guys are well aware. Secondly, my nails are stained and horrendous up close)
It started out with so much promise......
Yes, that's Novak Djokovic as my laptop background. My favorite tennis player, as he's practically the same age as me but far more accomplished. Also, ignore my missing bracket key.
Here it is out of the package against the instructions (which btw were so confusing!)
Basically for the french ones, you peel off the polish sticker to the perforated edge and apply the white tip first. I did not understand that until my second nail. But, applying it carefully can be a pain so you get a LOT of bumps. Also, it's hard applying the french tip close to the edge so I ended up with the super-tacky THICK WHITE TIP
My patience was running out by this point, and I also discovered that the "topcoat" was really hard to apply quickly and there were lots of bumps. Color me unpleased. Can you see the bad application on my middle finger? It didn't even adhere to my nail!
My ring and pinky finger ended up looking ok, but I gave up on the "topcoat" at this point and just stuck to sticking the white tips on. I was determined to see this project through
Sooooo unattractive. Can you imagine if I had gone to the interview like this? Eek!
I love taking pictures at this angle. It's deceiving, because it's universally flattering. Kind of like the "myspace angle" of nail pictures
But close-up reality is ugly:
The only good finger to come out of this hot mess is my pinky, which ironically I screwed up wrong because I didn't know how to apply it because the directions were CONFUSING
Maybe, if you squint really hard....nope still looks pretty bad. Even the miracles of Orly tinted polish couldn't save this
And this is everything I threw away....so wasteful
Ok, well I did kind of like the tip part of the stick-on polish. I think it's incredibly handy for someone like me who seriously can't freehand french tips if their life depended on it. Not to mention super handy for those that want to do a dark base/white tips funky french. But, I don't think I would ever pay full-price (they retail for like $7-8!) for ANY stick-on polish. I have a feeling the full-color ones are a lot easier to apply so I might try these again when they're on sale and I have more patience. There were times where I ripped the excess stick-on part off too agressively and it would tear a part of the tip off and it would just agitate me more. I now know that it's not like regular polish and I can be done and out the door in 20 minutes....lesson learned.
Well, that was a hot mess. And entirely not in the good sense. Detailed pictures in real-time up tomorrow, promise!
PS: I'm wearing NYC Glossies 221 tomorrow, a mauvey color that will hopefully kind-of match my purple sweater vest (yeah, sweater-vest. Oy, business casual.)
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
I think you guys know my love of drugstore polishes- especially NYC and Wet n Wild. It doesn't get much better than polishes for under $3! I received this color from a friend towards the end of my freshman year of college, right when I was getting into nail polish. I really love it, and it has such a nice memory for me too.
At first I thought the color would be too orange-y on me, but it's a perfect coral shade (more hinting towards orange in this picture though). Wet n Wild Crystallic retails for $1.99 at most drugstores, although I think this color has been discontinued. At any rate, it was kind of sheer (three coats here) but wore really well. I do love my sparkles
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Wow, major digression sorry. Anyway it takes a lot of effort to write this because I've been super sick the last few days to the point where I cant eat, sleep or type. Or do anything except watch tv shows on my laptop. But when I saw this email, I knew I had to share.
Today is the LAST DAY to get free shipping from the Chanel website with any Fragrance and Beauty order. This includes nail polish, specifically their latest Les Noirs de Chanel (which my best friend would love because she lives for vampy colors).
Link to the advertisement
Now you rare hear the words Chanel and free in the same sentence so if you've just been too busy to pick up some Chanel stuff or if you're too far away from a Chanel counter, this is perfect. Or if you're on your deathbed (slight exaggeration) like me and you can't really move. Unfortunately for Hawaiian and Alaskan residents, Chanel hates states that aren't a part of the continental US so this offer doesn't apply to you guys but I still love you!
It's time for more water, more pills, and more sleep. This took way too much effort.
Saturday, January 31, 2009
So, I got this Sinful polish and the label said Coco Diamond, but it's definitely not Coco Diamond...
Sorry it's not a great picture but it's a sort of green-teal (more on the green side) with gorgeous glassy flecks of aqua blue in it. This is a terrible picture but the sun came out only like five days after I wore it, so there's quite a bit of tipwear in the picture. Again, apologies.
I did wear this while I went to the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, CA because it was a very appropriate nail color...it looks like the ocean! And I know I'm biased because I still think the Monterey Bay Aquarium is like the best thing in the world (mostly because it is!), but the Aquarium of the Pacific satisfied my craving for aquatic life.
Anyway yeah if anyone knows what the name of this color is, please let me know! I've never seen this Sinful color before.
Thursday, January 29, 2009
First, holo polishes are those that have an overall rainbowy, prismatic effect. In direct sunlight, it will have a base color but then a lot of other colors too. Here's an example of a holographic polish, one of my faves, OPI My Private Jet:
By contrast, polishes that have holographic glitter just simply have multicolored glitter but they don't quite create that special prismatic effect that holo polishes do. Take, for example, this red Opera polish
Yep, it a gorgeous red jelly with holo glitter...
The glitter kind of reminds me of sprinkles, especially in this picture:
I left this picture intentionally blurry because it shows how the glitter is holographic
Also, success! I found a full-size Opera bottle picture for reader Pixie. I didn't fail after all
If you're wondering why these pictures look a lot sharper than normal, it's because I took these with my brand-new Canon camera...before I realized the camera had a dead pixel. I had really bad luck with Canon cameras, I think I mentioned before that I got a brand new shiny Canon for my birthday, but then the button on top was broken. Then I exchanged it but the screen had a dead pixel. So, I'm still chugging along with my Kodak.
Also, I know I've broken my resolution of trying to post every day, but I've been swamped with midterns this past week. Expect a little bit more posting in the next couple of days before I have to study again.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
You can also get VampyVarnish Twitter updates here.
(Sorry it took so long Kelly!)
Monday, January 19, 2009
Also, I'm not a fan of the 140 character limit on Twitter. I naturally talk a lot. And this translates into typing a lot. And sometimes I ramble, which I can't do on Twitter. But maybe that's a good thing for the people that have to listen to me.
Anyway, the reason I made a Twitter is because I'm always running into sales at stores. I mean, I don't go shopping every day (it's environmentally unfriendly...and actually it's more environmentally friendly to do online shopping. True story). But when I do I usually run into good clearanced items or sales related to nail polish and I just forget to post them here. It's sad. Anyway, hopefully with this Twitter I will be able to notify anyone who cares about any makeup sales in general or just random ramblings. I will definitely try and keep my BAT Twitter polish-related because really, my life isn't that interesting.
But, I will have to say, Slumdog Millionaire was FANTASTIC. Some people might be turned off by the R rating but it's absolutely fantastic. It deserves any accolades and awards it gets
Monday, January 12, 2009
I can't think of any other clever thing so I hope that was a decent enough segue to this NYX polish, Champagne. I'm not going to lie, I really didn't like this color in the bottle...but then I put it on.
It's a duochrome, but more noticeable in person...it fluctuated from a true gold to kind of a darker bronze. Anyone else disagree? It's what my eyes told me anyway haha. Here is is with three coats. I really like NYX polishes, so far they seem to be really good (although I have an awkward huge flakey topcoat polish called Peach Ave.). The application is always pretty good, and they have good wear. If you can't find any stores near you that sell NYX, you should try online at Cherry Culture.
The only gripe I do have about NYX polishes though are that the labels on the bottom of the bottle seem to come off really easily. If I don't fix them with tape right away, I tend to forget the name of the polish if I lose the label. Opps!
Not only is she a great actress, she has a rocking accent to boot. And also at last night's Golden Globes, she was rocking silver polish. It provided a nice contrast to her classy black dress and looked great next to her TWO Golden Globes (for Best Supporting Actress and Best Actress).
Cincy over at ALU identified the polish as Lippmann Rhapsody In White. The polish is gorgeous! Apparently it's from the fall collection...I'm so very tempted now.
Sunday, January 11, 2009
Alas, my OPI Kangarooby chipped after one day due to laziness on my behalf, I didn't file correctly. That's been fixed but I had a limited amount of time to paint a new color so I chose an old one, Essie Funships
But, check out these hilarious nails on SNL last night. I LOVE Neil Patrick Harris (aka NPH) and Taylor Swift so I had to watch last night's episode! In this skit, called Fran and Freba, NPH and Kristen Wiig (who has grown on me) play chatty air traffic controllers. It's funny....not hilarious....but whoa! Those nails! I love long nails but this was just taking it to the extreme and it was hilarious watching them maneuver around in those. Check it out:
Thursday, January 8, 2009
Isla has a new movie coming out, Confessions of a Shopaholic, so she's starting the press stuff. Here she is on the cover of UK's InStyle magazine:
It's a little hard to tell but she's rocking a fab muted pink that actually kind of matches the shade of the pink flowers on the dress (except the polish is a little lighter). It's a simple color, but magazine covers usually don't feature dramatic nails or dramatic colors.
Suggestions: China Glaze IV, Essie Sweetie Pie, OPI Fair Dinkum Pinkum
Also, if you guys are excited about this movie, Facebook has an application for it:
Hey, if it has more of the stunning Isla, I'm down.
But this....is kind of tacky.
Now, I'm a sucker for logos as much as the next person....there's no denying that they're a strong part of our society. And I have nothing against Chanel. But seriously, what is this??????
It's a little...TOO logo-y (it would be acceptable if it were only on a couple of fingers but it's on EVERY. SINGLE. ONE.). And also looks kinda cheap. And it's a little too desperate to flaunt it. Here's a hideous close-up:
What do you guys think?