Wednesday, March 30, 2011

How to Pull Off a Professional Manicure At Home Part 1: Purchasing the Products

Inspired by a friend's fetish for nail polish but when you arrived to the store, you are completely overwhelmed with the hundreds of colors and products? Well here are some basic products needed for a do-it-yourself (DIY) manicure.

Orangewood Stick/Manicure Wood Stick
This multi-tasking tool is a manicure must-have. Commonly used for pushing back cuticles, I also use this baby to tidy up the polish around my nails. For stubborn messes, wrap a bit of cotton around the end or dip the stick into polish remover.  You can pick this tool up anywhere (ie local drugstore or beauty supply, Ulta etc.)

Crystal Nail File
This tool is the essential for manicuring natural nails. A crystal nail file has a long-lasting abrasive surface and does not split and damage nails like the regular nail file tends to do. Although delicate (you do not want to drop this tool), the crystal nail file can be washed, sanitized or sterilized for repeated use.  I use Essie's Crystal Nail File but you can pick up anyone at your nearest drugstore or specialized store like Sephora or Ulta.

Nail Polish Remover
Not all polish removers are created equal.  The key is to pick a remover that won't zap all the moisture out of your skin and nails.  My "go-to" is Essie Naturally Clean Purifying Nail Polish Remover. I also love Zoya Remove Plus Nail Polish Remover.  You can pick up Essie's Polish Remover at your nearest Ulta. 

Base Coat Polish
The base coat is pretty important. It protects your nail from staining and also provides a clean palette for the color nail polish to adhere. I have tried many base coat polishes but my "tried and true" base coat is OPI Nail Envy Nail Strengthener. OPI Nail Envy comes in six formulas to meet different nail needs. I use the Nail Envy "Original" formula (the green one to the left.) There are also some base coat products that guarantee a longer wear than a regular nail hardener but I haven't found that claim to be true yet.

Color Enamel
When it comes to color selection, let loose! The old days of limiting bright colors to pedicures are dead and gone.  A beautiful color on my nails really makes my day. If this your first time painting your nails, go with your favorite color and then ease to the more adventurous colors like green and yellow later. Remember every color IS for everybody. Different shades of color makes the difference. If a bright yellow doesn't work for your complexion, that does not mean you should swear off all yellows. Try a different shade of yellow.  Don't know what's your favorite color? Look in your closet or makeup bag and see what color family you are drawn to or look at a color guide like a color wheel (see pic below.) One of my favorite colors is pink so I lived in pink polish when I first started polishing my nails. 

Top Coat Polish
A top coat is a necessity. The top coat polish protects the nail enamel from wear & tear and offers a glossy, shiny finish. I alternate between two top coat polishes, Quick and Slick by Prolana and Seche Vite. Both offers awesome protection and a "dripping wet" glossy finish.

Cuticle Oil
I use cuticle oil immediately after my manicure is done.  I also use cuticle oil every night to maintain healthy nails:-) It is very necessary. I usually alternate between OPI Avoplex and Creative Nail Design Solar Oil.

These are the basic products needed  to get started on your DIY-mani. Part 2 - How to Give Yourself a Professional Mani post is coming soon! I hope this helps my nail polish newbies. I will keep you informed as I come across new, awesome products to add to this list.  Feel free to ask any questions:-)

Monday, March 28, 2011

My Zoya PP is here!

It's here, it's here! I love getting makes me feel like a kid on Christmas. Adding to my excitement, Zoya threw in two freebies, their infamous nail polish remover and nail sample spoons for their latest collection, Intimate. Who doesn't love free stuff?! Judging by their sample spoons, I'm in love with the ethereal colors included in the collection. I think I'm getting every last one of the colors in that collection:-) Anyway, I can't wait to swatch my Zoya babies especially the matte pink Lolly!

(L-R) Blyss, Lolly, Crystal, Jules
My entire shipment
Zoya Intimate Collection Spoons
(L-R) Marley, Dove, Caitlin, Dannil, Jules, Gemma

Saturday, March 26, 2011

My Mani for the Week - "Do You Think I'm Tex-y"

Inside light
In sunlight

So I asked y'all which one I should swatch first and I only got one comment (tisk,tisk). So I went with OPI "Do You Think I'm Tex-y" to swatch first. This color was one of six colors in the OPI Texas collection described as having a "sorbet-like" finish. This jelly-like finish (think of the see-through dice or Lucite) is full of color and goes on the nail sheer. In the past, I have encountered few jelly polishes that I fell in love with. The problem that I have with a lot of of jelly polishes is the color is not saturated enough and ends up coming off as a clear nail polish with food coloring (yuck!) NARS Cosmetics "Zulu" (black-greenish jelly polish) is the one of the best jellies I encountered and one of my favorite jelly polishes to date. Well add "Do You Think I'm Tex-y" to the very short list.  The formula is awesome. Packed with a cherry reddish pink color, this jelly does not disappoint. No smile line in sight but still maintains the sheer, jelly finish. Ooh la la, one of best jellies I seen in a while!

Friday, March 25, 2011

My Latest PP (Polish Purchase)...

As I wait for my Internet PP, I usually get very impatient and end up getting more polish to satisfy my urge for new colors. This time was no exception. I made a Internet PP from Zoya this week and was trying to patiently wait for my four colors. Needless to say, I couldn't do it:-) So here are some polish I picked up and I can't wait to swatch these babies! Here are three of the 12 colors from the latest OPI collection, Texas. (L to R) Do You Think I'm Tex-y, Y'all Come Back Ya Hear, and San Tan-Tonio. Do You think I'm Tex-y and Y'all Come Back Ya Hear are described as having a "sorbet-like finish." The names are a bit much but I am excited about the range of color in this collection. Which one do y'all want me to swatch first? I'm leaning towards San Tan-Tonio...


Wednesday, March 23, 2011

My Mani for the Week...

This week I am rocking OPI's Hong Kong collection "Hot and Spicy" with China Glaze's Cracked Concrete on the index finger.  I loved the Hong Kong collection because it had a nice range of colors from a peachy orange like "Hot and Spicy" to a vibrant green like "Jade is the New Black".  The application of OPI was great, no problems with consistency (not too thick, not too thin), just prefect. The China Glaze Crackle Collection is a recent addition to the China Glaze family.  The Crackle collection comes in six colors (white, grey, black, pink and purple.)  The application of the Crackle polish is fun but you only have one shot at making it how you want it to look because it dries really fast. I will do a how-to apply crackle polish post very soon.  I personally love it. It gives an edgy look to an ordinary manicure. I can't wait to try crackle polish with more of my colors. 


The Peach


Hello lovelies! I am uber-excited about starting my nail blog.  I have been an avid lover of all things beauty since about sixth grade. I have always loved nail polish but when I got pregnant about two years ago, my love for it just manifested into something crazy and beautiful all at the same time.  So just to give you a BRIEF inside look into to my life...I am a working wife, mother of one, and a sister.  I love my life and I am happy to invite you into one aspect of it...nail polish, nail polish and MORE nail polish!


The Peach

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Hello World!

Hi everyone! I want to welcome you into my nail polish world.  The blog is still a work in progress but for those who know me, this is a big step for me.  Real posts will be just around the corner...thanks for visiting:-)