Swatch & Review: Vapid Lacquer – Ride or Die

“Out with the old and in with the new,” as they say, because yesterdays mani was immediately removed once I found out that I had a new polish waiting for me! I am so excited to bring you this swatch and review of…..Ride or Die by Vapid. Ride or Die is where holo meets multichrome and accurately described by its creator, Krys as a, “hyper holographic polish with a blue/green (cyan) to dusty purple shift. Think Cryogenic Refrigerant’s shifty sister.” From first glance this gorgeous beauty displays more blue but as you move and shift, so does the polish. Like with all Vapids I own, Ride or Die has a perfect formula and shown here in 2 thin coats over OPI Nail Envy and topped with Seche Vite Fast Dry Top Coat. Ride or Die, is beautiful in every form of the word and with no certainty that it will be back, you’ll want to be sure grab it when you can.

***Press Sample***

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While its gorgeous, in artificial lighting, this polish makes me want to stand outside all day in the sun…just wait, you’ll see!

See what I mean!!! Ride or Die in all its glory!

Go ahead, I wait while you bask in its beauty (I did…lol!)

Ride or Die will release for preorder on Saturday, June 11th and will available until Sunday, June 19th. So tell me, will Ride or Die make it to your collection?

That’s all for now!

Stay Polished,
Queen of Nails 83

 

Neons…Because Nothing Else Matters

I’m sure by now you have purchased at least 1 of these collections because whether indie or mainstream, no collection is complete without…NEONS!!

Why is it that we go crazy over eye searing, retina burning neons? I’ll tell you why. Because nothing else matters or screams ‘SUMMER’ better than neons!

Almost every brand has their own collection or set of neons they have newly released or re-released just in time for the summer heat and summer vacations. It may be 2 polishes or 7, cremes or shimmer, pastels or brights, if it’s neon, we must have it! Don’t even get me started on the neon trifecta…beautiful polishes that watermarble AND stamp.

I’ve done my homework and complied a listing of 30+ neon sets to help you narrow down your choices. Coming up you’ll see neons, neons and more….NEONS! So get your sunglasses and an ice cold Arnold Palmer and let’s get this party started.

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Baroness X
Collection Name: Southlands Sunsets
# of Polishes: 8
Availability: Check website for ordering info
Cost: Unknown

BL Nails
Collection Name: Neons Nail Polish
# of Polishes: 8
Availability: Current
Cost: $55/set                        

Boii Cosmetics
Collection Name: Neon Glow in the Dark 14 piece set
# of Polishes: 14
Availability: Current
Cost: $79.99

Colores de Carol
Collection Name: Beach Boys Live
# of Polishes: 8
Availability: Current
Cost: $70/set.
Set includes 7 shimmery holographic neons & 1 micro holo glitter topper

Dainty Digits Polish
Collection Name: DD Rainbow Gelato Collex 
# of Polishes: 6
Availability: Current
Cost: $50/set

Darling Diva Polish
Collection Name: Sidewalk Chalk Collection
# of Polishes: 7
Availability:
Cost: $50/set.
Set includes 6 polishes and 1 glitter topper

Doctor Lacquer
Collection Name: Kaleidoscope World
# of Polishes: 18
Availability: Current
Cost: $154.99/set (full), $106.99/set (medium) or $54.99/set (10pc set)
18 pc set includes 8 neon holographics, 8 neon jellies, Reflection and Refraction
10 pc set includes 8 neon jellies, Reflection and Refraction

Ellagee
Collection Name: Beach Bum Collection
# of Polishes: 7
Availability: Current
Cost: $69/set

Envy Lacquer
Collection Name: Island Paradise Collection
# of Polishes: 6
Availability: Check website for ordering info
Cost: Unknown

Fair Maiden
Collection Name: The Rainbow Bights
# of Polishes: 8
Availability: Current
Cost: $60/set (full) and $34.95/set (mini)

Glam Glaze
Collection Name: Graffiti Collection
# of Polishes: 8
Availability: Check website for ordering info
Cost: $62/set (full) and $32/set (mini)
Set includes 7 bright neon cremes with 1 Graffiti glitter topper

Heather's Hues
Collection Name: The Jellybeans Collection
# of Polishes: 7
Availability: Current
Cost: $57.75/set (full) and $35/set (mini)

Honey Bunny Lacquer
Collection Name: Summer 2016 Summer Neons Collection
# of Polishes: 9
Availability: Current
Cost: $45/set (full) and $22.50/set (mini)

In The Name of Polish
Collection Name:Fun Days and Neon Craze
# of Polishes: 7
Availability: Current
Cost: $63/set

Indigo Bananas
Collection Name: Neon, the 10th Element
# of Polishes: 9
Availability: Current
Cost: $82/set (full) and $53/set (mini)

Love, Angeline
Collection Name: My Pony Brights
# of Polishes: 4
Availability: Current
Cost: $12/ea

Lou It Yourself
Collection Name: Bright Ideas
# of Polises: 7
Availability: Current
Cost: $52/set

LynBDesigns
Collection Name: The Staycation Collection
# of Polishes: 9
Availability: Current
Cost: $50/set

Moo Moo's Signature
Collection Name: Rainbow Flowers Bath Collection
# of Polishes: 7
Availability: Current
Cost: 100 SGD

My Indie Polish
Collection Name: Neon Festival Trio
# of Polishes: 3
Availability: Current
Cost: $37/set (full) and $22/set (mini)

Native War Paints
Collection Name: Mrs. Whites Neon Brites
# of Polises: 6
Availability: Current
Cost: $45/set

Collection Name:  Dirty Neons
# of Polises: 6
Availability: Current
Cost: $45/set

Collection Name: Mr. Native War Paints Presents: COLORS!
# of Polises: 7
Availability: Current
Cost: $50/set

Collection Name: Mr. Native War Paints Presents: COLORS 2.0
# of Polises: 6
Availability: Current
Cost: $45/set

Parrot Polish
Collection Name: Cool Summer Collection
# of Polishes: 7
Availability: Current
Cost: $68/set

Philly Loves Lacquer
Collection Name: The Bright Stuff, Baby
# of Polishes: 6
Availability: Current
Cost: $65/set (full) and $32.50/set (mini)

Polish Addict Nail Color
Collection Name: Fluorescent Neon Jelly Collection
# of Polishes: 6
Availability: Check website for ordering info
Cost: Unknown

Pretty Serious
Collection Name: Pastel Pet Names
# of Polishes: 6
Availability: Check website for ordering info
Cost: Unknown

Pure Poison Polish
Collection Name: Spring Break
# of Polishes: 9
Availability: Current
Cost: $40/set
Set includes 6 creamy neons, 1 neon glitter topper and 2 white based crellies loaded with neon glitter 

Rica
Collection Name: Down the Shore Collection
# of Polishes: 6
Availability: Current
Cost: $45/set

Shannon's Nail Candy
Collection Name: SNC Neon Collection
# of Polishes: 6
Availability: Current
Cost: $45/set (full) and $25/set (mini)

Spellbound Nails
Collection Name: The Brights
# of Polishes: 6
Availability: Current
Cost: $40/set (full) and $22.50/set (mini).
Set includes 5 FULL SIZE bottles plus 1 free FULL SIZE holographic topper

Sweet n Sour Lacquer
Collection Name: Catchphrases Collection
# of Polishes: 6
Availability: Current
Cost: $52/set (full) and $24/set (mini)

Tux
Collection Name: Uptown Funk Cremes
# of Polishes: 5
Availability: Current
Cost: $50/set

Virago Varish
Collection Name: California Bleach Collection
# of Polishes: 5
Availability: Check website for ordering info
Cost: Unknown

So tell me, which collection or collections will be yours this summer?

Well that’s all for now!

Stay Polished,
Queen of Nails 83

Disclosure: This post is for infomative purposes ONLY, not review. Swatch photos are from google searches. Availability and prices posted are as of 5/31 and subject to change. Please click the link(s) provided for up to date availability and pricing. All prices are USD unless noted and all polishes as US based brands or ship worldwide. This is no means an all-inclusive listing.

Manicure Must Haves

Picture this, you make a 6pm appointment for a mani, on a Friday after work, because your nails have to be weekend ready. But around 5:15pm it starts raining, and you know there is going to be more traffic than usual. You arrive at the salon 5 minutes late, only 5 minutes, and see they’re are backed up, I mean packed, appointments and walk-ins alike are waiting. Finally your service starts at 6:30 and ends at 7:30pm. Now it’s 8:30 and you’re finally home after stopping for take out because you’re too tired to cook. We’ve all been there.

Well, with these few, simple steps you can eliminate the headache, the trip to the salon and saved $$. 

The perfect manicure doesn’t have to cost you $25 (or more) plus tip PER salon visit and you can be sure your environment and products are safe and clean. For a fraction of the cost you can get 11 items from your local drugstore/beauty supply and give yourself a salon quality manicure from the privacy and comfort of your own home. And should you decide to also indulge in a glass of wine, then my hats off to you!

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Lets Get Started…

*First start off by removing your previous manicure with (non)actone*

Personal Favorite: Professional Remover 100% Pure Acetone by Onyx Professional from Walmart

*Next, apply cuticle remover to your cuticle as directed on package*

Personal Favorite: Sally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover from Walmart

*Then, with the pusher end, gently push back your cuticle*

Personal Favorite: Tropical Shine Steel Chrome Cuticle Pusher from Sally’s Beauty Supply Alternative –  if you don’t have a cuticle pusher you can use orange wood stick 

Tip – 1) Wipe your tool on an alcohol moistened cotton square after each finger  and 2) I prefer to push cuticle back as opposed to clipping them as clipping may cause irritation and/or infection of not done correctly. 

*Now, that you have pushed back the cuticle from all 10 fingers, apply alcohol to a cotton pillow and completely wipe the entire nail*

Personal Favorite: 91% Isopropyl Alcohol and Swisspers Cotton Squares both from Walmart Alternative – If you don’t have or can’t get cotton squares, paper towels will work too. 

*Optional Step- use buffer or nail file to smooth surface of nail bed, free edge and/or shape nails*

Personal Favorite: Sani-Block from Sally’s Beauty Supply

*Next, apply a base coat*

Personal Favorite: Nail Tek XTRA from Sally’s Beauty Supply Tip – a base coat will help strengthen your nails, prevent polish from staining your nails and give polish a smooth surface to adhere to.

*Now comes the fun part, color selection and application*

If you’re anything like me, you’ve spent all day, scratch that, you’ve been thinking about it since your last mani, deciding what your going to do. So have fun, this step is meant to express your creativity and master the art of nail painting. Go ahead, I’ll wait!

*Now that you’ve painted and possibly designed your nails, you’ll want to seal it all in with a top coat.*

Personal Favorite: Dry Fast Top Coat by Seche Vite from Sally’s Beauty Supply

*Finally, you’ll want to spoil your nails and cuticles with cuticle oil or balm and hand moisturizer*

Personal Favorite: Cuticle Oil and Barrier Butter by Cuter Cuticles and Gold Bond Ultimate Intensive Healing Hand Cream from Walmart Tip – This step can not be missed! It’s a must for smooth, soft hands, not to mention, hands that smell great.

Now that you’re all done, it’s time to sit back and enjoy your completed manicure because trust me, everyone else will! 

Other Helpful Tips:

  • Do a complete manicure once a month
  • Apply cuticle oil/balm at least 3 times day (more if you wash your hand frequently)
  • Apply hand moisturizer daily
  • Wear protective gloves when doing house work or handling harsh chemicals
  • Cap your free edge to prevent chipping
  • Paint underneath your free edge with your base polish for added strength

Well that’s all for now!

Stay Polished,
Queen of Nails 83

Swatch & Review: OOO Nail Lacquer – Oya and Shango

Hey y’all!! I’m so excited to share that I received my first Press Samples since being a blogger!!! YAY!!! So with out further adieu, let’s get this party started…

I was first introduced to this brand via IG where a good friend tagged me in a post that the brand was looking for swatchers. I reached out expressing my interest and the rest is history. Today’s swatches come from a ‘new to me’ indie line, OOO Nail Lacquer and behind this brand stands Symantha Onyechi. Let me tell you what I know so far. “All OOO Lacquers are vegan and free of DBP, Toulene, Camphor, Formaldehyde, Formaldehyde Resin and TPHP. OOO Polish is an African inspired polish line of custom, handmade colors. Each lacquer is carefully handmade and uniquely named after several Yoruba Orishas and include a description about each Orisha to give a sense of history or personality to each color.”

I was sent 2 of the 9 polishes, Oyá and Shangó from the Orisha Collection and Shine Like a Queen, the brands Top Coat. Both polishes and the top coat along much more are all currently available online. To find out more about Symantha and OOO Nail Lacquer, visit the online store and stay tuned to for my interview with Symantha. Until then, let’s jump right into the swatches!

 ***Press Sample***

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(Note – both swatches are done using no base and 1 coat of Shine Like a Queen Top Coat provided by OOO Nail Lacquer.)

Up first we have Oyá, a gorgeous coppery red-orange shimmer polish. This formula was a little streaky on the first coat but self leveled and shown here in 2 even coats. Drying took no time at all and dried completely in 4 mins with a beautiful shiny finish.


Up next we have Shangó, a beautiful orange-gold polish with red undertones. Again, the formula was the same as Oyá and dried completely in 4 minutes with 2 coats.

While these polishes do look very much alike, they stand up to the challenge of being beautifully gorgeous all on their own. Did I mention….I love this formula! Its consistency is great and is very easy to work with.

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So that concludes my swatch and review of these 2 polishes and the top coat. I hope you enjoyed hanging out with me.

Well that’s all for now!

Stay Polished,
Queen of Nails 83

 

Ladies Behind the Polish

As I had mentioned in my previous blog, I have had the pleasure of working with some wonderful indie makers including Vioree Brandon from Divine Nail Lacquer, Meke Titi from Domani Color Artisan Nail Glaze, Symantha Onyechi from OOO Nail Lacquer, Chelsea McDonnel from Pretty and Polished and Sacha Junique from Jior Coutour. One thing these women have in common besides beautiful polish is they are great examples that women can do anything we put our minds too. These ladies show that we are capable, creative, intelligent, powerful, and independent, I could go on and on but I’m sure you get the picture. Even through their trials and tribulations I’m sure these women endure in their business, I’m also sure it’s also very rewarding.

In this blog, I celebrate these women for reasons I stated above and because these are the women took a chance on little ole me. In this big sea of talented manicurists both professional and hobbyists alike, they allowed me the awesome opportunity to swatch their polishes. If you’re not familiar with what that is or what it means, let me break it down for you. Polish swatches are just like paint swatches you find in the store. When you’re ready to paint your living room or bathroom, you visit Home Depot, head to the paint section and find a vast array of paint swatches in a multitude of colors, shades, finishes and brands. After spending what seems like an eternity, you decide on the Log Cabin by Behr in a semi-gloss finish. Why? Because the swatch you looked at perfectly captured that color you wanted for your accent wall. The swatch is important because without it you could have gone home only to find you hated the color and it just wasn’t what you wanted. It’s the exact same concept with polish. Polish makers look for someone that can capture the polishes color/finish with clear pictures and good lighting that will be appealing to customers  and hopefully lead to a sale. Makers use these photo swatches all over social media and their company websites as a marketing tool. It’s our ‘job’ as the swatcher to provide just that and it is a big responsibility. It’s a responsibility I don’t take lightly and I am truly honored, humbled and grateful for the opportunity they have afforded me.

Since working with these companies and the ladies behind the polish, I have built relationships and they have given me all the more push and drive to pursue my own dreams.

In future blogs, I will have my interview with these women about their brands, so stay tuned…

Well that’s all for now!

Stay Polished,
Queen of Nails 83

***Press Sample Photos***

2015 Winter Collection – Divine Nail Lacquer

 Let’s Get Acquainted – Domani Color

Donne Fiorite – Domani Color

Icon Collection Pt 1 – Pretty & Polished

  Jior Couture

…Here I Am World…

Here I am, sitting at game 1 of my son’s basketball tournament in King of Prussia, PA when I received a call from my aunt who said “you need to look into starting a blog.” Immediately I thought, ‘A blog?? Me? No way!’ She was now the 3rd person that said this…why are they all ganging up on me…lol. Don’t get me wrong, I had thought about it, but me being me, I pushed the thought to the side and came up with excuse after excuse as to why I couldn’t.

“No one who would read my blog or care what I have to say.”

“The nail community doesn’t needs another nail blogger.”

Plus, right now I had to focus on my husband, my kids and my career. Right?

As we continued the conversation through buzzers sounding and whistles blowing, the more and more I became interested, intrigued and excited. I thought maybe, I’ll add it to my list of things of long term goals I wanted to accomplish, right along with making my own nail polish, joining the 10k IG followers club and going to school to become a licensed nail tech. Once we got off the phone, while I wasn’t 100% onboard with starting a blog, I thought, I’d do some research, talk to a few bloggers I knew and go from there to be fair.

Fast forward a few weeks later and here I am. An official nail blogger!!! So here I am world, you can’t stop me now!

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My nails are and have been my passion for years and I didn’t even know it. Let me give you a little back story to my nails so you get the full picture and have a clear understanding of where passion came from. Let’s rewind 17 years ago, when I was a 16 year girl ‘dying’ to get her nails done, all I could think about was my first full set. $60 later, I was addicted!! Addicted to the sound of the drill, smell of the acrylic, technique and beauty of application, artistry of each hand painted design…EVERYTHING and had to have more of it. I made friends with my techs over the years and they all knew exactly what I liked. At the time, I didn’t know anything about shapes or technical terms but know I know, I’m a die-hard squoval gal through and through and medium-long length because we all know there is nothing worse than breaking a nail. Anyway, I worked at a movie theater then to support my habit…lol, I made my car payment (a 2000 Chevy Cavalier) and to got my nails done. Nails are my drug of choice and I do anything to make sure they looked nothing short of amazing.

That was until November 2014 when I decided that I was going natural and soaked off my acrylics. Don’t get me wrong, I had taken my nails off many, many, many times over the years to ‘let them breathe’ but no more than a week would pass and I’d be right back to square one, getting a full set. I’m not sure why I made the decision to go natural, maybe it was because I thought I would save money doing them myself, maybe it was because it became inconvenient to go to the salon with or without an appointment as I got older, regardless, I did and it was the best decision I made.

I remember one Saturday in November I took a trip to Five Below to purchase the essentials, because for a girl who had been going to the salon to get full sets and fill-ins, I didn’t own any nail polish, a file, acetone or cotton balls, nothing. I went home that night joined several nail groups on FB, subscribed to tons of nail channels on YouTube and without realizing my profile on IG changed to 99% nails.

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I am more in love with nails, polish and nail art/designs than ever before. I must say I’ve accomplished a lot and had many successes in a short amount of time. I’ve been able to amass a polish collection of well over 300 bottles including indies and mainstream, swatched collections for some amazing indie brands, hit 3k IG followers, started a FB page and help admin some nail based groups. I’ve even had offers to work in local salons (but not being licensed I respectfully declined but was told to contact them when I’m ready).

So what can you expect to see and how often? Well, let’s see, nail swatches as I’m challenging myself to full mani swatch each polish I own (of course this is in addition to PR swatches for indie brands), I’ll also be doing some nail art/designs and maybe even some tutorials here and there. My plan is to post at least twice a week, maybe more, I just haven’t decided, all depends on how time consuming this new process is for me.

Last thing, I’ll also be hosting a GIVEAWAY soon! I’m thinking maybe a launch giveaway so stay tuned for more details.

This blog is interactive so please leave me your questions and comments and I’ll be sure to address them.

Well that’s all for now!

Stay Polished,
Queen of Nails 83