Monday, December 31, 2012

NOTW: Holiday Round-Up!

I'll have individual posts of all of these up soon, but I just wanted to show you the manicures that I ended up having on during December to be all festive and fun :)
I hope you all had a wonderful holiday!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

OPI Skyfall Magnetic Duos - Swatches

So you guys all know how excited I was and how much I LOVED Skyfall (both the movie and the OPI winter collection), right? Well, I found out there were magnetic duos that were also part of the collection and immediately went and bought them on
There are 3 duos, again all with James Bond themed (and one, specifically Skyfall themed) names. Is That Silva? is a gray silver with holographic glitter, Morning, Moneypenny is a magenta with holo glitter, and Bond...James Bond is a dirty gold with gold flakes in it.
I wasn't as much into the magnetic polish trend as I was other trends, but I do have a few other brands magnetics and they all basically work the same. Nails Inc, China Glaze, Essie, random drugstore brands and Layla are just a handful of the brands that offer magnetic polishes.
Each OPI Duo comes with a polish and a matching magnet. Some brands come with a magnet that attaches to the cap, and some have loose magnets like OPI. I prefer the attaching magnet, just because it makes for easier storage. I find that a ton of loose parts are just annoying, especially when they're sort of oddly shaped, like the OPI magnets.
OPI's magnets, pictured above, are "finger holding" plastic tools with the magnet inside the top of the tool. If that makes any sense. 
I do appreciate what they were trying to do - sometimes the trick with magnetic polishes is finding the right spot to put your finger so you get a good amount of activation from the magnet without getting too close. This system just didn't work out for me though. I have smaller fingers and nails so even if I rested my finger on the bottom piece of plastic, the polish on my nail wouldn't react to the magnet at all, so I'd have to bring it closer. Because of the way the magnet is built, it was kind of hard to see where my finger (or the swatch) was so I had to re-do that nail (or swatch) a ton of times.
Luckily, magnetic polishes react to all types of magnets, so I don't really ever HAVE to use the OPI magnets, especially because they don't have any unique-to-OPI patterns.

Bond... James Bond
Bond...James Bond is, at its base, a patina gold golor with gold flakes. When layered, the gold flakes don't chunk up or anything, but the base color is still easily seen.
When brought to the magnet, the gold becomes much more vibrant and rich, more like the bottle color.
I like that in these OPI magnetic polishes, it's not just a shimmery polish that goes dark in some places when brought to the magnet like other magnetic polishes. These all have some dimension to them, like this polish and the gold flakes, and the other two with the holo glitter. I like that the gold flakes become bolder when brought to the magnet.

Is That Silva?
Is That Silva? is a gunmetal base with holo glitter. This one is my favorite. 
The contrast between the base and the holo glitter is the most stark when brought to the magnet.
It's also nice because you can wear it on it's own and it's still a pretty cool polish. 
Without being activated by the magnet, it's a gray shimmer with speckles of holo glitter. I honestly would totally wear this on it's own. Very stormy and unique.
When brought to the magnet, the color darkens to an asphalt color and the holo really pops against it.

Morning, Moneypenny
Morning, Moneypenny is a magenta with the same holo glitter as Is That Silva?
The color goes darker to a maroon when brought to the magnet, and also really makes the holo glitter pop. This one would also be pretty cool to wear on it's own. Reminds me of a pink version of Picture Polish's Monroe.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Lorac Pro Palette Swatches!

Good evening everybody :D 
It's tuesday evening and I'm FINALLY and OFFICIALLY on winter break from school! Here's a bunch of swatches and pics of the new Lorac Pro Palette to celebrate
This was purchased a few weeks ago - I had wandered into Sephora, the same time as when I bought the Sephora Chaotic Top Coat, and I went to check the Lorac display just to see if this was in stock there. Turns out, it was, and it was the only one left. The makeup hoarder in me took that as a sign, and therefore, it had to go home with me.
Currently, it's in stock on Sephora online as well as Ulta online, in case you were all wondering *wink wink*.
It retails for $42 and is apparently a $110 value. It comes with 16 shadows and a mini primer. I guess all the fuss about this palette was not just that the shadows were fantastic but that half of the palette was all matte colors. 
Amarixe, Eshani and a ton of other bloggers were raving about it, so really, I knew that eventually I was going to purchase it as well. 
In the box, the palette comes next to a small Lorac Behind The Scenes Eye Primer. I haven't used it yet because I'm trying to use up all of my Too Faced Shadow Insurance (which I'm SO close to being done with) and I also have a full sized Nars Smudgeproof waiting for me. I figured I would save it for a rainy day - either when I travel or just run out of primers. 
The palette itself is very slim and sleek. The outside is slightly rubberized, kind of like a Nars Blush, but not as rubbery as those. It's actually very very thin - about 3/4 the size of the first Naked Palette. It closes with a magnet and is pretty secure. 
Inside on the top flap is a large mirror, covering almost the whole top flap, and then there are the 16 shadows ranging from light to dark in both matte and frosty shades.
Personally, I love that the shadows aren't named after things, but are just colors. It makes it so easy to remember, and to reference to. 
Formula wise, all the matte colors are incredibly soft and pigmented. There is not sort of chalkiness which is the main concern when it comes to matte shadows. In fact, they're almost too soft and powdery - I feel like sometimes I waste a bit of product. It does, however, make them super easy to blend without having the fear of applying the matte shadows patchily. 
The frosts are also very soft and pigmented. There is less fallout with these shadows, I've found. The metallic shine of the frosts are all very strong.
This is the left half of the palette, which contains the 8 lightest shadows - 4 mattes and 4 frosts.
  • White - matte almost pure white. 
  • Cream - light creamy beige color. Similar to Urban Decay's "Foxy" (Naked 2), but not as yellow toned. Also reminds me of Mac's Blanc Type, but maybe slightly pinker, and Stila's Bare.
  • Taupe - warm midtoned brown. Seems on the warm side to be called "taupe". Similar to Urban Decay's "Buck" (Naked 1).
  • Lt. Pink - light dusty rose color. Much more of a beige pink than a true pink.
  • Nude - shimmery light pink beige. 
  • Champagne - shimmery light beige, reminds me of Stila's Kitten.
  • Gold - true gold frost. Similar to all of those Urban Decay Baked/Half Baked colors. Super reflective.
  • Lt. Bronze - shimmery rose gold. Sort of like Mac's Rubenesque, in powder form.

The right side of the palette has all the darker colors.
  • Mauve - slightly purple toned mauve color. Much more purpley in swatch than in pan. It's similar to Mac's Quarry and Urban Decay's Tease and Stila's Bliss.
  • Sable - burnt sienna. Definitely swatches less red than in the pan photo.
  • Espresso - coffee brown. 
  • Black - not as deep dark black as you'd think. Almost more of a charcoal color.
  • Pewter - midtoned brown shimmer. Has slight red tones to it.
  • Garnet - rust colored shimmer.
  • Deep Purple - inky purple. Not as vibrantly purple as in the pan. More of a blackened purple.
  • Slate - slate gray. Much like slate tile that you'd see in a home depot or something lol.

Overall, I really do like this palette. With Urban Decay's release of both Naked Palettes, and the new Naked Basics Palette, this palette is definitely not something that everybody needs. If this came out first, it'd be a totally different story.
The benefit of this palette is that it has all your mattes and all your shimmers, and that you can have it all in one place, especially if you're a frequent traveller or you just plainly don't need very much makeup.
Because I have both Naked Palettes (as well as numerous Mac Shadows, other Urban Decay shadows and palettes, Stila palettes, Sleek Palettes etc) I could definitely just choose one of those to take with me if I were to travel. 
If you have this palette, the opposite is true, you won't need to buy any of the things I've listed up above.
Lorac's Pro Palette is a great introduction to makeup for beginners and great convenience for those who strive for that. I will say that this palette is versatile for a large amount of skin tones, but may lean to be more suitable with light to medium, warm toned skin, or for people that prefer warm toned colors.
If you prefer cooler tones, go for the Naked 2 Palette. 
If you really JUST want mattes and will never use the shimmers, go for the Naked Basics, or any customizable palette system like Mac or Urban Decay's systems.

Monday, December 17, 2012

2012 Favorites & Giveaway!

Giveaway CLOSED:
- You must be subscribed to me on this channel
- Please have a parent's permission OR be over the age of 18.
- The POLISHES are open to US/Canada ONLY. The LIPGLOSS & URBAN DECAY PALETTE is open internationally.
- Comment here ONCE A DAY with your favorite MAKEUP item for the MAKEUP GIVEAWAY.
- Comment here ONCE A DAY with your favorite NAIL POLISH for the NAIL POLISH GIVEAWAY.
- If you live in the US or Canada, you may enter one comment for both each day.
- This will be open for two weeks. It will close on January 1st 11:59pm PST (San Francisco, California time).
- Winners will be chosen by
- I will contact the winner via YouTube Message and they will have 48 hours to respond. If they do not, I will pick another winner, and so on.

I just wanted to say "Thank You!!" to everybody that supported, followed, comment, subscribed and read and watched my videos and blog this year :) It truly is crazy to me to think that there are some people out there that like what I do and I appreciate everybody that's helped me get to this happy place in the beauty world!
Here's to a wonderful Holiday Season to everybody out there, and another good year!

Sephora The Toppers Chaotic Swatches

As I was doing all of my holiday shopping last week, I wandered into Sephora to go look at their more than amazing holiday gift sets. I purchased, like I always do, a ton of gifts for friends, family and family girlfriends/boyfriends. 
In my Sephora, the nail polish stand is right next to the check out so I always go browse through it before I go check-out. I was there pretty early in the morning so really, I was like the only person in the store, and kind of died when I saw this polish. So yeah, every employee saw it too. Embarrassing. But they were totally celebrating with me.
This polish is part of a new line of top coats Sephora is making all having to do with effects, I think. They're called "The Toppers" online. The display they were sitting on really had NO information other than the giant X that's on the bottle. 
Choatic is one of 4 or 5 (my Sephora already only had Chaotic and two other glitters in stock) top coats. Honestly, looking through the glitters they didn't seem all that unique, if you're all into nail polish, but for the non-hoarding consumer, this would be a pretty neat thing to see in stores. 
To me though, Chaotic was the only polish really worth purchasing, and it's because the Lynderella Connect The Dots trend has FINALLY made it to mass producing companies. It's alway a good sign when a trend you like makes it to Sephora, because that means soon a lot of other companies will be doing the same thing. 
Chaotic is a white and black mix of glitter, that has no sort of metallic shine to it. There is also black bar shaped glitter. It just looks awesome and speckley and honestly looks very similar to Connect The Dots. If it included white bar glitter, it'd have been perfect. But for those of you not willing to bid on eBay and shell out $26 for it, or want to purchase something similar much more quickly than waiting for other dupes to come in stock on sites like Llarowe or Harlow & Co, then I totally recommend checking this out.
The formula is the same as with most glitter top coats. It's an easy to deal with clear base that layers quite easily. The swatch on the left is staggered like most of my swatches. One coat at the very top, two in the middle, and three at the tip. The swatch on the right is 2 coats over Essie's Van D'Go. As you can see, a fair amount of glitter comes out on the brush so it's not difficult to use.
It does dry demi-matte so if you want a glossy finish, a top coat is definitely needed.
Again, these are available at Sephora and I totally recommend checking it out!

NOTW: Glitter Gradient Tips with OPI Crown Me Already

I've recently had my nails grown out a little longer than I normally like them, so I decided to take advantage of that and do things I wouldn't normally think of doing with my nails when they're on the shorter side. I actually prefer a shorter nail, but when it comes to doing manicures like this, I don't mind having longer nails!
This manicure was purely inspired (well I copied it lol) from PapersandPeonies on Instagram (they also have a store). She was modeling some of her rings and they rings were very cute but her nails were the thing that caught my eye. 
I immediately took off what I had on my nails and decided to do the same. The glitter I used was OPI's Crown Me Already from their Miss Universe Collection. I at the end, added a tiny bit of Ciate Jewel to each tip but it's really not that noticeable. 
In order to create this manicure, I made sure the brush had a very tiny amont of polish and painted 3/4 of my nail. Then repeated, just only did 1/2, then 1/4 then added just a little more on the tip to make them pretty opaquely glittered. 
I loved how super reflective the glitter in this polish was. It was also easy to do this manicure with this particular polish because it's not a very thick base. Some silver glitter polishes have a pretty thick consistency in it's clear base, which this did not have because of all the silver microglitter that was packed into it. 
This lasted on my nails for a good 8 days because I loved it so much. I used OPI's Nail Envy and layered Revlon's top coat from their new ColorStay line of polishes and INM's Fast Dry. I layered 2 top coats because the Revlon is super glossy and the INM is quick dry. My beloved Seche Vite has ran out, which is why I did that. Otherwise, I'd just use Seche.

NOTW: China Glaze Smoke & Ashes, China Glaze Luxe & Lush, Ciate Jewel

While re-organizing my polishes, I pulled a few out that I knew I wanted to try out soon because I hadn't yet. China Glaze's Smoke & Ashes from their Hunger Games collection was the first one I pulled out. 
It's a dark inky base with a gold and green glass fleck. It's bright and beautiful in the bottle, and I know some people had some application issues with it (the shimmer didn't come through at all on the nail) so I was sort of nervous to use it.
Luckily, my bottle applied wonderfully and as awesomely as it looks in the bottle.
I used 3 coats of Smoke & Ashes. 
On my ring finger I wanted to accent it just a little bit so my nails wouldn't be TOO dark. I love dark nails, but sometimes I'm just not in the mood for something so so dark. So, I layered a coat of China Glaze's Luxe & Lush from the same collection, which is an opalescent chunky flake type of glitter. I also added a coat of Ciate's Jewel, which is a holographic bar glitter. 
This manicure lasted on my nails for about 3 days before I removed it. The tips started to wear slightly, but maybe it was just more noticeable because it was such a dark color. I used China Glaze's Fast Dry Top Coat and OPI Nail Envy.

NOTW: Revlon Royal & Max Factor Fantasy Fire

Are you guys ready for another NOTW spam?
Blue is the color that I seem to collect the most of, especially darker blues. They've always been one of my favorite colors to collect because I really love they way they look against my skin tone. 
Consequently, I have the most NOTW posts featuring blue polishes as well. This first one just adds to that list :)
During the beginning of the fall, I spent a lot of time looking at new Instagram users to follow. I found a lot of good ones, that post indie polish swatches, current releases, nail art and the like. My Instagram name is yukiesano, if you'd like to follow :) On one of my favorite user's feeds, I saw Revlon Royal, which is a beautiful royal blue jelly. She had used it for a jelly sandwich manicure. It was awesome and one of my favorite jelly manies that I had seen, so I went and searched for it and found it at CVS.
Excited by that purchase, I went home pretty immediately and found a little package in the mail from MissHollyBerries. Inside was Max Factor's Fantasy Fire which is a purple jelly base with a very unique and vibrant duochrome to it. I was totally going to do a jelly sandwich manicure but decided to layer those polishes instead.
For you guys to see all the dimensions of the manicure I have a ton of photos in this post at different angles. Max Factor's duochrome goes from an ember like orange to a bright green. Revlon Royal's color was strong enough to not really be changed by Fantasy Fire.
I used 1 coat of Fantasy Fire over 3 coats of Royal. For a base I used OPI Nail Envy and I used INM's Fast Dry as a top coat.
This manicure lasted about a week before any chipping or wear.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

NOTW: French Manicure

Here it is. The ever so rare French Manicure. I don't usually do the French because I sort of find it boring and I also totally associate it with high school. I sometimes refer to it as the "slut" of the polish world because boy does it get around, everybody does it at some point, and it's SO totally overused.
I don't have a problem with it, but I think people use the French too much as something that is "classy" or whatever and they don't go looking for something unique and classy for the office or for meetings and such. 
It also wears so quickly and is so obvious when to starts to chip or when your hands get dirty. The upkeep for this is so much more difficult than with other manicures. I always get in the mindset that this has to always be perfect, whereas if I have a bright blue, for example, when it chips, I can always layer a bright glitter over it and it'll be all ok. I could do that with a french, but I always choose not to. 
Mostly though, I totally associate it with high school so that's why I don't wear it as much anymore. 
After my nails grew out a little, I decided to French once more because I had a good nail length to achieve it with.
As a base I used OPI's Nail Envy, then painted 1 coat of Essie's Vanity Fairest, which is a sheer, light pink with a very delicate fairly like shimmer. For my tips, I used OPI's Alpine Snow, which is a white creme. I topped it all off with INM Fast Dry Top Coat.
Surprisingly, this lasted through cooking a Thanksgiving meal, so I would say it lasted VERY well through some intense hand usage. It lasted probably like 4 to 5 days with no sort of wear, then the tips started to chip and I removed it. 
What are all of your opinions of the French Manicure?

NOTW: OPI La Boheme

I wandered into a new Nail Salon the other day and found this gem hiding in a corner.
This is an old, black label (aka before OPI went 3 free) polish by OPI that I saw on Scrangie back in June. It was super pretty in her photos and I mentally noted to keep an eye out for it.
As I was scanning colors, this polish was in the corner, silently shimmering in the sun, and were it not for it's duochromey bottle shining in the light, I would have totally glanced over it. When I read the label, I sort of did this awkward happy hop which prompted my friend to go "what are you doing?". But let's face it for polish people like us that was a totally appropriate hop.
La Boheme is a shimmery wine red color with a warm shimmer mixed into it that makes the polish shift from wine to sort of a holiday red ribbon color. The pic above is the only pic I managed to get that showed both shades of the red really well. The shimmer makes the polish look very glowy from within.
I honestly have no idea what base or top coat the lady used because they were unmarked bottles. But my nails lasted a good week before any wear so it was a good manicure overall.

NOTW: James Bond Skyfall Premiere Manicure - OPI Goldeneye & Jade Holografico Mystic Gold

OPI Goldeneye, 2 coats, Flash, Canon T3i
I will first apologize for the messy, non-cleaned up nails. But these photos were taken RIGHT after I painted my nails. After that, I never ended up taking photos of my nails so this is what you get. 
Before going to see Skyfall in theaters, I knew I wanted to coordinate my nails, especially using something from the OPI Skyfall Collection, which was their 12 piece holiday collection this year. I decided on Goldeneye because the color and element is such a huge theme and color in the series. 
Goldeneye is a pure gold colored finely milled glitter flake. It layers like tiny flakes of gold leaf on the nail and makes your nails look like they are plated with gold. It's AMAZING. You can actually see the little particles on the sides of my fingers lol. What I have in the photo above (as well as the photos below) is 3 coats of Goldeneye.
Just to make it a little bit more of an intense gold, was add in some of my other favorite gold polish, Jade's Mystic Gold Holografico polish. It's also a very pure, honey gold color with the most strong holo in any polish that I've ever seen. 
What this did was at some angles have my nails shine the same gold as the Jade polish but then in some angles have Goldeneye come through and reflect gorgeously with the holo on top. Unfortunately, I was for some reason stupid and didn't photograph it with my DSLR camera. I did snap some pics on my iPhone 4 - which isn't ideal but you get a good color represetation and the holo actually comes through pretty well as all. 
This manicure lasted a week. I used OPI's Nail Envy and INM Fast Dry Top Coat. 
OPI is available at Ulta and other salons and beauty supply stores and then Jade is available on Llarowe. The rest of this post is a pic spam of the magic of this manicure!
OPI Goldeneye 2 coats, Jade Mystic Gold 1 coat,  Indoor Fluorescent Lighting, No Flash, iPhone 4 Camera

OPI Goldeneye, 2 coats, Indoor Fluorescent Lighting, No Flash, Canon T3i

OPI Goldeneye, 2 coats, Flash, Canon T3i

OPI Goldeneye, 2 coats, Flash, Canon T3i

OPI Goldeneye 2 coats, Jade Mystic Gold 1 coat,  Flash, iPhone 4 Camera

OPI Goldeneye 2 coats, Jade Mystic Gold 1 coat,  Indoor Fluorescent Lighting, No Flash, iPhone 4 Camera

OPI Goldeneye 2 coats, Jade Mystic Gold 1 coat,  Indoor Fluorescent Lighting, No Flash, iPhone 4 Camera