Category: Mani Monday

Mani Monday – Ceramic Glaze Fall/Holiday 2015

There are so many options for holiday nail polish looks and it’s rare that one collection has options for nearly all of them. Ceramic Glaze’s fall/holiday line has a little something for everyone. Want a glossy creme? Got it. Sparkle? Got it. Fancy top coats to change up your look? That too. There are six new, limited edition shades and two previously released shades (Hong Kong Diva and Vintage Glam). We have the new shades to show you.
Applause
Ceramic Glaze Applause Swatch
Applause is a deep plum with a little shimmer and it’s gorgeous. If you want something that falls into the holiday category but is a little different, this is a great choice.
Regal
Ceramic Glaze Regal Swatch - One Coat
This deep, bold blue is a one-coater and it goes on extremely smoothly. This is my favourite shade of the collection.
Wonderland
Ceramic Glaze Wonderland Swatch
Wonderland is an iridescent shade that’s hard to nail down. There’s gold, silver, green and purple in here and it changes depending on the lighting.
Sorcery
Ceramic Glaze Sorcery Swatch - Stain
Sorcery is a dark teal creme and it’s quite different than most shades in it’s category. This one stains though.
Snow Queen + Diamond Dust
Ceramic Glaze Snow Queen - Diamond Dust Swatch
Snow Queen has white hexagon glitter in a clear base and Diamond Dust has holographic microglitter. I’m wearing them over Sorcery in the swatch. The’re both really nice top coats but I prefer Diamond Dust. It’s so, so pretty.

Mani Monday – Essence Gel Nails Challenge

essence The Gel
I love doing my nails and I’ve gotten really good at painting them. What I haven’t mastered however is nail art. But when we got asked to try the essence gel nail challenge, I figured that was as good a time as any to see what I could actually do. essence sent over a bunch of their The Gel nail polish including the base and top coats. I chose Turn The Lights Off as my base colour, which is part of the essence Soft Metal category and is a gorgeous silvery blue. The other two shades I picked was Rock My World (medium gray) and Let’s Get Lost (teal). My first attempt at this nail art challenge was so bad that I decided to wait a few days before trying again.
essence The Gel Nail Art Challenge
I wore Turn The Lights Off the whole time in between and I have to say how incredibly impressed I was with The Gel nail polish system. I wore the same shade for five days with zero tip wear or chips and probably could’ve gone another week.

I ended up with a semi-successful attempt at nail art. I’ve never even attempted ombre nails before, which is why I’m calling it successful but it’s not the prettiest my nails have ever looked.

All I really learned from this challenge was that I really like essence’s The Gel nail polish and that I’m really terrible at nail art.

Most Wanted Manicure Essentials

I get asked all the time how I keep my nails looking great and to be honest it’s mostly luck and good genes. But there are a few products I use almost religiously. These are my Most Wanted Mani Essentials.
Essie First Base Base Coat
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I’ve used quite a few base coats in my time and I always go back to Essie’s. I’ve been using First Base for a few months now and I love how smooth it makes my nails and how strong it keeps them. It also helps your nail polish stick, which makes for a longer lasting manicure.
CND Solar Oil
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I’m not a huge fan of greasy cuticle oils but Solar Oil absorbs almost instantly, smells delicious and keeps my cuticles looking good.
L’Occitane Shea Butter Dry Skin Hand Cream
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Pretty nails don’t look as great if your hands look really dry and a good hand cream can help with that. L’Occitane’s line of hand creams include shea butter which make my hands feel extremely soft and hydrated and I love that it doesn’t wash off when you wash your hands.
Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat
Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat
This is probably my favourite nail product of all time. People seem to have a love or hate relationship with Seche Vite but I’m definitely in the love camp. It dries my nails in under a minute and leaves them glossy for days. I take this with me when I’m going to a nail place for a manicure and if they ever decided to discontinue it, I’d probably stockpile enough for the rest of my life.
Formula X For Sephora Delete Nail Polish Remover
Formula X For Sephora Delete Nail Polish Remover
I change my nail polish pretty much every day so it’s important I have a good nail polish remover that doesn’t kill my nails. Delete by Formula X gets everything off (even glitter) without scrubbing or tugging. I love the pump formula because you end up using less and it locks so it’s hard to spill.

What are your favourite nail products?

CND Vinylux Most Wanted For Fall

I’ve already mentioned that fall is my favourite nail polish season and CND Vinylux have pretty consistently been some of my favourite fall shades. Vinylux is Shellac’s at home weekly wear system. You apply two coats, add the top coat and it dries in minutes without a lamp and lasts for at least a week. The best part, you can use regular nail polish remover. These are my most wanted shades for fall.
Faux Fur
CND Vinylux Faux Fur Swatch
Faux Fur is a great deep brown that’s perfect for fall. I feel like there really haven’t been a ton of brown shades released lately and it’s too bad because they’re great for someone who wants a dark shade without being edgy.
Rock Royalty
CND Vinylux Rock Royalty Swatch
There are very few purple shades that catch my eye but this dark plum is one of my favourites.
Sage Scarf
CND Vinylux Sage Scarf Swatch
This medium green has a ton of grey in it which makes it more of a fall colour than spring or summer. If you don’t want to go completely dark with your nail polish, this is a great option.
Fedora
CND Vinylux Fedora Swatch
I have a really hard time explaining Fedora. There’s red, brown and purple in it and it’s the best alternative to black. It’s really a gorgeous shade.
Black Pool
CND Vinylux Black Pool Swatch
I find it’s pretty difficult to find a good black that’s glossy and has a great formula. Black Pool might be the best black I’ve found and I wore it on Halloween with little skull decals but I would wear this any day of the year.

Do you have a favourite fall nail polish?

Mani Monday: Essie Fall 2015 Collection Review + Swatches

Fall is usually my favourite time of year for nail polish collections, I love the darker, warmer shades. Usually though, I love a couple shades from a collection, not the entire thing. Essie’s rock’n’roll royalty inspired collection is everything I want in a fall collection. The formula for this collection is a tiny bit thicker than their usual thin formula which made it really easy for almost all of these shades to be one-coaters.
Color Binge
Essie Color Binge Swatch
Color Binge isn’t a classic red, it has too much orange in it, but it’s a great fall shade that would be a great base for halloween nail art.
With The Band
Essie With The Band Swatch - Could've Been 1 Coat
Essie calls With The Band a ‘toasted spice burgundy’ and while I’m not a huge fan of red polish, I fell in love with this one with the first brush stroke. This could’ve been one coat but I went with two to even it out a bit.
In The Lobby
Essie In The Lobby Swatch - 90's
In The Lobby really makes me think of the 90’s. An ‘exotic cinnamon plum,’ this shade is competely on trend and a fantastic shade for fall.
Leggy Legend
Essie Leggy Legend Swatch - 1 Coat
I don’t know if I would’ve ever picked up this molten bronze shade on my own but it’s really pretty in the sunlight and had full coverage with one coat.
Frock ‘N Roll
Essie Frock 'N Roll Swatch - 1 Coat
Frock ‘N Roll is described as a ‘shimmering rich espresso’ but it leans toward the black side. There’s a lot going on with the shimmer as well, I saw reds and golds and probably missed other shades. This one was also one coat.
Bell-Bottom Blues
Essie Bell-Bottom Blues Swatch - Could've Been 1 Coat
To the surprise of no one, I knew Bell-Bottom Blues would be my favourite shade just by looking at the bottle. But I was completely unprepared for how gorgeous this indigo shade is. One coat looked great but two is spectacular.

It’s been a really long time since I’ve loved an entire collection so much to the point where I didn’t want to take any of these polishes off. I really liked the thicker formula and might have to stock up on a couple of these in case I run out.

Mani Monday: Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Fall 2015

I’ve tried a lot of Sally Hansen polishes in the past but somehow missed their Complete Salon Manicure line completely. Complete Salon Manicure claims to have seven benefits in one bottle and lets you skip the base coat, top coat and salon. I skipped the base coat but found that I was too impatient to let these polishes dry on their own so I added my usual quick dry top coat. Again, the Sally Hansen brush was massive and I needed to do quite a bit of cleanup with each shade. All the photos are two coats and a top coat.
Talk Is Chic
Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Talk Is Chic Swatch
Talk Is Chic is supposed to be a grayish purple and in the bottle it looks like it is, but on my nails I didn’t get purple at all. I really liked the shade of gray though, so I was fine with it.
Jewels Of The Trade
Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Jewels Of The Trade Swatch
Jewels Of The Trade is almost a duochrome without the chrome. It shifts between magenta and fuchsia and is really pretty in the sunlight.
Bow To The Queen
Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Bow To The Queen Swatch
I love this slate blue that’s really more on the gray side. It’s a great, moody shade for fall.
Stellar Style
Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Stellar Style Swatch
Stellar Style is a pale pink that isn’t too nude. It had a great formula for this type of shade and had great coverage. I would actually wear this again and I’m not a huge fan of pink.
Sky’s The Limit
Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Sky's The Limit Swatch - Stain
I’m obsessed with this light, sky blue. It’s just gorgeous. It’s also the only one that stained on me, which made cleanup difficult. I’ve actually never seen this kind of shade stain before, so I was surprised. I’ve worn it again since then because it’s so pretty.
Tropic Thunder
Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Tropic Thunder Swatch
Tropic Thunder is my favourite of the shades I tried. A deep navy gray, this is the perfect alternative to black.

Mani Monday – Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy New Shades

It’s been almost a year since we first tried Revlon’s Colorstay Gel Envy nail polish and they’ve just added eight new shades. The formula is the same and so is the application. Skip a base coat, apply two coats of Gel Envy and then a coat of the Gel Envy Diamond Top Coat. I don’t know if they reformulated the top coat or the last one I had was a bad bottle but this time my top coat played much better with the polishes. I stuck with the two coat rule but a couple shades definitely needed more.
Perfect Pair
Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy Perfect Pair Swatch - 4 Days
I wore this cappuccino shade for four days before taking a photo and there wasn’t any chipping or tip wear. Perfect Pair was definitely the best performing of the new shades I tried.
Gambling Heart
Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy Gambling Heart Swatch
Whenever I try to photograph a Revlon nail polish with glitter in it, I can never get it to look as amazing as they do in person. I’m not a fan of glitter but this dark pink shade is gorgeous and wasn’t too hard to take off.
Up In Charms
Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy Up In Charms Swatch - Pooling
Up In Charms has the unfortunate issue of being a typical pale pink. Which means the formula was a pain to deal with and there was a lot of pooling. There’s really not a lot that I do like about this shade.
Get Lucky
Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy Get Lucky Swatch
Get Lucky made up for Up In Charms. This red tinged orange applied beautifully and lasted almost as long as Perfect Pair in tip wear.
Vegas, Baby
Revlon Colorstay Gel Envy Vegas, Baby Swatch
I don’t know when I became such a fan of pink nail polish but Vegas, Baby is by far my favourite shade. There’s a shimmer to it that you can really only see in sunlight. Unfortunately, this one chipped on day one but it’s so pretty I’ll definitely use it again.

Overall Revlon’s done a pretty good job delivering on the long wear promise of Gel Envy. I’m liking the top coat a lot more and I love the gambling theme to the names. I would love to see seasonal collections though, very few of these shades resemble a good fall colour but since they’re building up the core collection, that’s ok.

Mani Monday – Quo By Orly Fall Dance Party Collection Review + Swatches

One thing I’ve noticed about quite a few fall nail polish collections this season is that they don’t necessarily look like typical fall collections. Quo By Orly’s Fall Dance Party collection definitely has a few shades that I would classify as summer but some that definitely fit into the fall category. Fall Dance Party has six shades, of which we tried four (we received five but couldn’t get Epic Remix opened). Quo by Orly is available exclusively at Shoppers Drug Mart in Canada but if you don’t live here, Orly’s In The Mix collection looks to be nearly identical.
Electrified
Quo By Orly Electrified Swatch - 1 coat
This hot pink screams summer to me but it was a one-coater that looked gorgeous. For some reason all the Quo By Orly pinks I’ve tried have been the only ones that can get away with one coat.
Turn Up The Volume
Quo By Orly Turn Up The Volume Swatch
This coral pink was really pretty but really didn’t go with my skin tone. Taking a photo was difficult because my skin looked kind of off with this shade.
Live In The Moment
Quo By Orly Live In The Moment Swatch
We’ve gotten so few purple shades lately I feel like it’s been months since I’ve worn one. This mid-toned bright purple is great for fall and it wore really well.
I’m With The DJ
Quo By Orly I'm With The DJ Swatch
I don’t think it would surprise anyone that this dark blue creme is my favourite of the bunch. It was almost a one-coater but had a little bit of patchiness that two coats smoothed out. This is a definite must have shade for fall.

Overall I really liked the Fall Dance Party collection. The names fit the theme perfectly but I wish Quo By Orly would invest in better brushes. Mine were consistently uneven which makes application a little tricky. But the formulas are getting a lot better.

Mani Monday – CND Contradictions Fall 2015 Review + Swatches

I’m a huge fan of CND’s Vinylux seasonal collection and fall’s Contradictions collection is just as great as previous collections. Vinylux is the weekly version of Shellac but you can do it at home and take it off with nail polish remover. You don’t use a base coat and use the Vinylux top coat. Most of these swatches are two coats and even though CND says the polishes will dry in about eight minutes, I found some were faster than that.
Naked Naiveté
CND Vinylux Naked Naivete Swatch
Naked Naiveté is a pale pink nude cream and it was just ok for me. There was some unevenness that was bothering me that I couldn’t seem to fix but it’s pretty decent for a pale nude.
Safety Pin
CND Vinylux Safety Pin Swatch
I wanted to love this metallic silver shimmer but as you can see from the swatch, I had issues. And I couldn’t fix them. Safety Pin is such a pretty shade but the formula drove me crazy.
Poison Plum
CND Vinylux Poison Plum Swatch
Poison Plum is one of the most unique shades I’ve seen in a while. It has a black jelly base with red glitter and when you get it into the sunlight it’s absolutely gorgeous.
Tartan Punk
CND Vinylux Tartan Punk Swatch
Tartan Punk is a metallic red shimmer perfect for fall. It’s not too dark and it’s just bright enough to stand out from all the other fall reds.
Peacock Plume
CND Vinylux Peacock Plume Swatch
I’m completely obsessed with this shade. It’s a metallic blue base with blue-green shimmer and it’s even more stunning in person.
Rouge Rite
CND Vinylux Rouge Rite Swatch
Rouge Rite is a dark red creme that screams fall to me. The fact that it doesn’t stain is a bonus. Loving this shade.
Couture Covet
CND Vinylux Couture Covet Swatch
Couture Covet is a dark teal creme and I don’t think I’ve seen a shade quite like it in a long time. This one does stain a little which made cleanup a tad difficult but I love this one so much I won’t let that stop me from using it.
Grommet
CND Vinylux Grommet Swatch - 1 coat
I’ve saved the best for last. Grommet is a one coat wonder and this metallic dark blue shimmer is one of my favourite shades from all the fall collections I’ve tried. I have a feeling I’ll be making quite a dent in this bottle.

Even though I had issues with some of the shades from this collection, I really love it. I’ll be wearing more than half of these polishes again and I really can’t say that about most of the collections we review. Especially a collection this large.

Mani Monday – Nails Inc x Alice + Olivia F/W 2015 Mini Nail Polish Collection

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I’m so happy we’re heading into fall. It’s my favourite season and it’s by far my favourite nail polish season. I’m so happy to start our fall nail polish posts with what might be my favourite collection that I’ve seen this season. Nails Inc teamed up with Alice and Olivia’s Stacey Bendet for for a fall/winter collection inspired by 1970’s rock and roll with a bohemian twist and boy are these shades gorgeous. These minis come with pretty big brushes but they have a rounded bottom that perfectly fits my nail beds so I was actually loving the brushes instead of hating them for a change. All of these were two coats plus a top coat but I have to say they all could’ve been a one-coater with a heavy enough hand.
Ruby Night Sky
Nails Inc Ruby Night Sky Swatch
This deep, deep red was almost black until you got it into sunlight and then you could really see the red. It’s one of those shades that’s way better in person.
Gold Goddess
Nails Inc Gold Goddess Swatch
I’ve made my dislike for glitter pretty well known but this one might actually be worth the trouble of removing it. It just glitters and totally makes me think of the ’70’s.
Paris Rouge
Nails Inc Paris Rouge Swatch
I love this shimmery red plum so much. It’s such a fantastic fall shade and the formula was perfection.
Next To Nothing
Nails Inc Next To Nothing Swatch
I’m really not a fan of nudes and their formulas aren’t always the greatest, so when I find one I love, I stockpile. I’m definitely going to need a full size of this latte nude cream. It’s so flattering with my skin tone and the formula went on flawlessly. I never would’ve guess that my favourite shade would be this one when I got the set.

I really can’t say enough about this Nails Inc x Alice and Olivia collaboration. They really hit a home run between the gorgeous shades and fantastic formulas. I hope there are more collabs coming.