Thursday, February 28, 2013

The Long Haul: February 2013

Being more conscious of spending is easy when you're publicly tracking it -- and especially when there are non-polish expenses to consider (namely: car-related expenses, a new phone plan, a friend's wedding gift, and "Game of Thrones" DVDs -- total priority ... and also, #savegoro, YAY!). I did okay.

The rules: If I bought other items at one store along with polish, I won't include the tax, just the total amount I spent on polish. Additionally, anything I bought as a gift for someone else won't figure into this and does not count.

Notes: I've been working a lot of long days (read: NIGHTS) lately, so pictures will have to come another time ... as will my February STUFF ON STYLE post, unfortunately.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Oscar nails! Ulta Salon Formula Red Carpet Red + Lynnderella The Glittering Crowd

When I was young and impressionable (read: in middle and high school), I loved watching the Oscars. Obviously I wasn't in it for the fashion, because it was the '90s, and ... yeah.; there also was the novelty of getting to stay up late TO WATCH TV. Until I was about 18 or 19, I didn't realize the Emmys were my true endgame of award shows -- as much as I appreciate film, I love television more (which you can figure out after spending five minutes reading this blog).

I haven't watched the Oscars in some time and I was going to skip it again this year (I just got "Game of Thrones" Season 2 on DVD -- priorities! I'm also not as drawn to award shows as I was, and oh geez, Seth MacFarlane), except ... my friend's brother won a little contest and was selected to be one of the six student presenters at the show. UM, YES. WATCHING FER SHUR.

I would have had an Oscar party to get my brag on like the terrible person I am, but as I don't have any friends near temporary RachQ, the best I can manage for tonight will be to stick some drinks in the fridge and show you my nails. SO.

For your consideration: Ulta Red Carpet Red, a super boss candy apple red jelly that was gifted to me by Janice. It's more blue-toned IRL than it looks here. Shown are three coats and SV.




I love it sofa king hard. Look how squishy! Ugh. Janice, THANK YOU.







This is a mini bottle, so I'm guessing it was part of a set and I have no idea when it came out. I am just happy to have it because it's gorgeous and will be used to the last drop. Formula and application were perfect, dry time was FAST, and wear has been great. Edit: This is from the Salon Formula line, which often goes on sale (2 for $6, that kind of thing) and you can find it with all the eyeshadow and powders and stuff. It's $6 in-store and online.

All in all, a pretty classic red nail look. But lest it be too plain for an Oscar glitz fest, I tarted it up with three coats of Lynnderella The Glittering Crowd (last seen here):




One coat of Gelous was necessary before top coat.



(Sorry 'bout them cutes. DAMN, they look rough.)


I'm sloooooowly getting used to working with indie glitters (no matter what Lynn says, her stuff is about as indie as it gets) and dabbing little bits of glitter onto my nails. I have to say that I'm also pretty patient when it comes to these things, so it's not a huge deal if I have to work at it. I did have to do a little fishing, especially when I discovered The Glittering Crowd contained star glitter. I thought I was going to hate star glitter. I'm ... okay with it.

Part of me felt a little guilty about blogging this Lynnderella because it was super limited edition, has been discontinued, and is now VVVHTF -- at least, it is if you don't stumble upon a blog sale or something. BUT, it took me forever to get it after I decided I wanted it, so there's no way I WON'T be using the bejeezus out of it.

All right. What do you think? Good combination? Oscar-appropriate? Are you doing anything fun tonight? Who was your favorite Oscar host (or winner)? Or do you hate award shows as much as BEST ACTOR NOMINEE Joaquin Phoenix -- are they carrots you don't want any part of? (What a quote. What a gem.)

I will say that I'm glad they nixed the trophy girls this year and that I hope future producers continue to include student presenters in the ceremony. It's a significant (and positive) gesture, no matter what industry you're in. I can't wait to see my friend's brother on TV, LOL FOREVERRRRRRR.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Pink Wednesday: Zoya Gilda

Happy hump day! This post took a little while to write, which is why I'm posting late, but it was worth the extra time.

Last Saturday, I took my sister to a local Live in HD screening of the Metropolitan Opera's new production of "Rigoletto" by Verdi. My sister had never attended a Live in HD screening before, and I always get a kick out of introducing people to them. "Rigoletto" is a mainstay in most opera companies' seasons -- it's got wonderful music, memorable characters and a plot that is really fucked up. As my sister accurately put it later, never trust the guy who sings bass.

Never heard of "Rigoletto"? Oh, sure you have. Everyone's heard "La donna e mobile" at some point -- most notably, last year on "The Colbert Report" when perfect television prince Stephen Colbert joined Placido Domingo to sing it.




My sister was somewhat astonished to find out that "La donna e mobile" was a careless man's song about the "flightiness" of women. But when the guy singing the song looks like this ...


(source: NY Times)


... how u gonna b mad, even if HE's the flighty one? (This tenor, though ... I died. I've seen one of his old HD performances before -- "Lucia di Lammermoor" with Anna Netrebko -- so I knew what his voice would be like, but his costumes in this? DAAAAAAAAAAAYUM, SON.)

This new production of "Rigoletto" takes place in 1960 LAS VEGAS. (In case you didn't suss that out or haven't heard about it. I feel like it's been majorly hyped, but definitely not within the nail blogging circles.) As you can see, there are showgirls, card tables, casino signs, decadent lounges, great costumes, Rat Pack stylings, a Cadillac Coupe de Ville. And neon. So much neon. (And also, a few changes to the libretto ... how are you going to Rat Pack without saying "baby" more than once?) The deformed clown Rigoletto becomes the Don Rickles to the Duke of Mantua's celebrated lounge singer. The assassin Sparafucile wears cowboy boots and writes his number in a matchbook for Rigoletto. Gilda, Rigoletto's daughter, is dressed like a Sandra Dee good girl in contrast to all the skin and glamour you'd see in Vegas. It's nuts.

The women seated to my left had some pretty vocal opinions about the production. I'll just say this: It wasn't perfect. I get how the set especially would be offensive and gaudy -- isn't Vegas, though? But it was so brave and so spectacular and if a few things can be tweaked, I can see this production becoming a seasonal addition to the point where I also can see myself standing in line at the Met for nosebleed tickets. I would gladly suffer vertigo to see this. So far, "Rigoletto" has been my highlight of this HD 2012-2013 season.

I think Zoya has a thing for some operas, because they have a fair amount of polish names that I can attribute to some characters and heroines. Yes, I did think of Gilda Radner at first, but as soon as I saw the PR images for "Rigoletto" and heard about the Vegas motif, I was like "OMG GILDA."

Gilda and Rigoletto
(source: WXQR)


And this is how a polish I never would have looked at three years ago became one of my favorite things ever. Classic Rach.




Four coats with Cult Nails Wicked Fast.










I bought this polish last summer for the name (and because Ulta was having a Zoya B2G1 free promo at the time), but obviously it's so much more than that. Remember the Sparkle collection that gave us CHARLA? And Ivanka, AND Mimi? At first I thought Alegra would be more my jam, and that the "Barbie" pink of Gilda was passable, but pinks like Gilda are so flattering on me in general. So a pink like this? In a Zoya glass fleck? No, I hate it. Get it away from me. (Not.)

It goes on sheer, but builds up after at least two more coats. I used four coats total, but you can stop at three. Wait a couple of minutes in between applying coats to avoid any patchiness or pooling. I had average dry time with Wicked Fast; the only thing I would recommend -- and it's a small thing -- is probably not to apply polish ten minutes before going to bed, 'cause oh man, the sheet marks. I also scratch in my sleep, so no matter how much I want a polish to look perfect, sometimes it doesn't happen, and it didn't on Saturday morning, but I was okay with that. I wore this for four days with average tip wear (which shows a little more because of the glass fleck's jelly base).

Gilda is available at the Artofbeauty site for $8 and anywhere that sells Zoya. Since it's Zoya, however, just wait for a promo. ;) I don't know if this polish has any dupes because it doesn't look super unique these days and I don't know if people have the patience to do three coats with anything any more (RMFE.)., but if you loooooove pink, glass flecks, and opera, Gilda would make a stunning addition to your stash.

Gilda: like, want, NEED? Isn't it perfect for the Verdi character? Have you ever listened to "Rigoletto," or seen it on stage? Diana Damrau was an amazing Gilda and she totally killed it (in the best possible way). This Met Live in HD production was a seasonal highlight not just for me, so I'm sure we'll see it on DVD next year or perhaps in the coming months. Depending on where you live, you may be able to catch the encore presentation of sexy Vegas goodness -- just click [THIS LINK] and go to the bottom of the page. Broadcasts run internationally, but the U.S. and Canada encore date is on the evening of March 6. Check and see if a theater chain or an independent venue will be screening this broadcast -- your ticket will be a little over $20, but it's well worth it.

I love these broadcasts because opera is the only form of high art I can even begin to comprehend. My friends are more intrigued by dance and physical performance art, but I'm more intrigued by what the human voice can do. And as a former entry-level broadcasting professional, I love that our society possesses the technology to share an art form containing this much scope and grandeur with anyone who normally wouldn't have access to it.

If you got through this post, thanks for reading! I love opera so much. :3

Apparently, so does Nicolas Cage. There was his character in "Moonstruck," and then ... this. (Which I also have seen. Many times. NOT PROUD OF IT.)





Happy Pink Wednesday.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Skinny Dipping (With Friends): Sation Café con Leche

It's the third Monday of the month, which means it's time for your monthly installment of Skinny Dipping!

Not only does it look like Anna beat me to the punch by posting her selection before I did, but both our picks for today are warmer-toned nudes. We can coordinate, but not THIS well. Pretty awesome.

I have never owned a Sation polish, before or after the company's rebranding. I'd never even heard of Café con Leche until my friend Janice RAOKed this to me last month when she sent me a bottle of OPI Goldeneye from a group order. If I'm being honest, I wasn't sure if I was going to like Café con Leche because it's not the kind of nude I usually gravitate toward.




Three coats with SV.









And yet ... I kind of dig it. Café con Leche isn't too pink, too orange, or too brown for me -- it's more of ... a caramel nude? I was thinking it would lobster hands me, but it actually doesn't. It's a strangely flattering change of pace from the usual nudes I favor. Thanks, Janice!

The other thing that surprised me about this polish was that it's a jelly. Oh yes. It was easy to work with, and the Sation brush is wide and flat, probably about half the thickness of a SH paddle brush or an OPI Pro-wide. I removed it after swatching so I can't speak to the wear, but it dried quickly with SV. I waited a couple of minutes in between coats because I wasn't sure if it was going to be weird or patchy. It wasn't. The formula was rather even, too. I guess I should have mentioned that early on. These new bottles are 0.50 Fl. oz., and I think the bottle shape gives it the impression that the bottles contain more product than they do. But 0.50 Fl. oz. is standard size.

If you're interested in Sation polishes, you can grab them from the Sation site, from e-tailers on Amazon, online beauty supplies like Nailsupplies.us, or regular brick & mortar beauty supplies. Also, thank you, Madeline, for reminding me about TJ Maxx. I should have asked Janice where she got this bottle, but every time we were on the phone last week I always forgot to bring it up, LOL.

Any thoughts on Café con Leche? Does it look more caramel or actually like café con leche? What do you think of the new Sation bottles, colors and collections? As I understand it, they're putting out a new Marie Antoinette collection for spring. I haven't seen any swatches yet, but the press release images should be floating around somewhere.

Come back in March for more nude polishes (so. many. choices. ...)! Until then, check out a really great Essie on Anna's blog today. :)

Thursday, February 14, 2013

(Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear) Grey Area: The Rachel Story.

When I want to get wasted, PRONTO., I find that a Long Island iced tea is quite effective.

"Getting wasted" was my agenda the first time I hung out at a bar alone with the guy I'm currently with -- I WAS planning to get my drink on that night, just with a girlfriend. Well, I had four Long Island iced teas. (He paid for three of them.) While that may explain a few things, it certainly doesn't exactly explain why we've stayed together for so long. Before we officially started dating, we had a major fight, and I'm not talking about "Oh, PUH-LEEZE, 'First Blood' totally counts as a Christmas movie." (We have had that argument, sry2say.) To follow a metaphor from "Psych," he was beyond the doghouse -- try the pound. I surprised myself by (1) buying a fucking Adele CD IN FRONT OF A MALE FRIEND and (2) crying a lot. I have been known to cry over the weirdest things (the beginning of "Up," that time Anthony Edwards died on "ER" -- HOLY SHIT.), but over guys? ... ew. No.

One morning, during an errand at Wags, I happened upon the Winter 2010-2011 Xtreme Wear display. I grabby handsed Grey Area and Lacey Lilac, as there's no way of knowing whether limited edition Sally Hansens are going to become permanent in whatever SH line they're part of. When we got to the counter, he offered to pay for them. It was the first (and only) time he offered to pay for a polish, but I considered the gesture a decent start to reparations.

I've worn Lacey Lilac and loved it, but Grey Area mysteriously went untried. I figured I'd break it out for the holiday, since we're still on and "Grey Area" LIT-erallyTM Chris Traeger was our relationship for two years. It took a while, but we're good.

Also, I have no idea if we even have an anniversary because while a few significant dates come to mind, we have no way of knowing which one is THE one. I do know that the first time we hung out alone, the night of many Long Islands, was February 13, after work. I remember because I had to work with the other single ladies on my shift the next day.

~~Ah, memories.




Three coats with SV, after one day of wear.

Also, I will fix these pictures as soon as I can. Everything has been HAZMAT NO TIME lately, and rainy to boot.








I don't remember which was released first, SH Grey Area or Essie Smokin' Hot, but they're very close dupes, and were limited edition when they were released. I loved the Essie but wasn't able to find a back-up at the time as it was VERY sought after, so when B offered to pay for Grey Area, I let him go right ahead. Now that both seem to be core, it's just a matter of which brand you're willing to pay for.

The formula on this creme was lush and perfect, good in two coats. Dry time was fast. I had no tip wear or chipping with this mani and wore it for four days, which means Xtreme Wear cremes and I are back in love -- Lacey Lilac did not dry when I wore it, but that may be because I used a CND top coat I normally don't use (Air Dry? Super Shiney? I forget).

Grey Area was a limited edition release back in the fall of 2010/winter of 2011, but has been upgraded to the core SH Xtreme Wear line. You can pick it up almost anywhere that sells it, though I would wait until a drugstore has a good SH promo going, and then you'd be able to have it for almost nothing.

Do you have Grey Area, Smokin' Hot, or any other close dupes? I have one too many, but I adore the color, so it's not an issue for me. What's your favorite drink for wasty times? What are your Valentine's Day plans for you and your significant other?

I'm not going to see him (and my real Valentine, my darling Sterling Meowlory) until Saturday night, but his gift is on the way to his house. Last year, I thought about giving him this ...




... but it can wait until I find a better price/seller. Also, I forgot about it a couple of weekends ago when I was brainstorming. He's getting something else which I'll post later. I'm pretty sure he's giving me a heating pad, but WE'LL SEE.

Whomever you spend your Valentine's Day with, accidentally or not, I hope you have a great one. And remember ...


(source: OFFICIAL "Parks & Recreation" Pinterest!)


Donna Meagle continues to be my spirit guide.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Nail of the Novel/Book club nails: Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Gilded Lily

Last month, I posted about setting blogging goals and how that was the indirect result of me thinking new year's resolutions were lame. The thing is, I wasn't kidding when I said I wanted to read more than two books a year.

I acquired and started several books last year, but I only completed reading two: The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender (I blogged about it here) and The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett. Let's just say the only reason I got through the latter was because Rufus Sewell was on the front cover. You know I love him (and his lazy eye). I also would like to disclose that I watched the Starz miniseries upon completing the novel, and welp, I'm not sure how so much went wrong with such a brilliant cast.

The obvious solution to getting myself out of my reading slump was to start a two-person virtual book club with my Twitter nail friend Danielle. I have great difficulty focusing on tasks and doing anything substantial for personal benefit, and have found that any opportunity that provides me with a support system has always worked out well.

We began planning this before and after Christmas. Danielle has been working through Modern Library's 100 Best Novels; I've been laboring my way through TIME Magazine's All-TIME 100 Novels on and off since 2004-2005. She kindly offered to combine both our lists so we could find unread works that we could read together. And since she loves polish as much as I do, she also thought it would be fun if we both did a manicure corresponding to each book, so that's what I'm blogging today.

Our January book (my pick!) was Edith Wharton's The House of Mirth. And yes, I DID finish it ... in the wee hours of January 31st.

Two days after beginning the novel, I knew Gilded Lily was the perfect The House of Mirth polish, the main reason being that the main character is named Lily Bart. Secondly, Edith Wharton is considered one of the foremost novelists of the Gilded Age. Wharton herself was part of the high society she wrote of in her novels. She was born Edith Jones in 1862; the phrase "keeping up with the Joneses" is often said to refer to her family.

To "gild the lily" is to attempt to improve or embellish something that is already beautiful. Could this apply to Lily Bart? I say yes because there are aspects of her personality and philosophy that could use betterment, but physically, no; there's a very particular scene in which a couple of characters reflect on the impossibility of such a thing. I'll talk briefly about Lily Bart later, but first, pictures!




Four coats with SV. Please pardon my cuticles. The weather has not been kind -- we went from snow and freezing temps to sunny and warm in four days. I need a dermatologist.








WELL. HELLO, LUVAH. LOOK AT THAT GOLD.

If you missed out on OPI Goldeneye but have SH Gilded Lily, you're going to be glad you saved $8.50 ... or you'll be sad that you don't have an extra bottle of a fabulous gold. Gilded Lily and Goldeneye often get compared to each other, and although the consensus is that they're close enough that you don't need both, I needed both. After nearly missing OPI Dazzled by Gold a few years ago, I promised myself I would jump on ALL THE GOLDS.

Admittedly, Gilded Lily is a bit sheer, but it builds up nicely. You'll need at least three coats to get the right color depth -- I opted for four, and I think it looks amazing. I wore this polish for SIX DAYS, and if I didn't have a top coat experiment to run for Anna, I would have been quite happy to wear this for another six days. It dried super fast with SV; while it appears that I had shrinkage at the tip of the nail, I'm pretty sure that was the result of the polish's sheer base. Removal was no problem, either. Any gold particles that clung to my hands were scrubbed off, no big deal.

This polish was part of designer Prabal Gurung's limited edition collaboration with Sally Hansen last fall. I bought this bottle at Target on a whim in either late September or early October ... I can't remember when exactly, but I am so glad I did!

I'm a nerd and still can't get over how perfect this polish is for this book and for Lily Bart. Her greatest weakness and her downfall from upper class New York society is a result of her fondness for luxury and her inability to live without it. She is often praised for her beauty, but she is twenty-nine as the novel begins, and although she has turned down several suitors, she worries that her looks are fading along with her chances for marriage to a wealthy man. When one character notes that Lily has a tendency to behave the way people expect her to, another replies that they then must expect and bring out the best in her.

All in all, a wonderful read. I often overlook American authors because if I read something about the ascent to or descent from high society, it's usually from an English author (high school reading requirements/habits die hard). The House of Mirth was my introduction to Edith Wharton's writing, and I can't wait to actually read The Age of Innocence. --Yes, I watched that movie every time it was on TV, but reading is another thing entirely.

Speaking of movies, a lot of things in the 2000 film adaptation of The House of Mirth could have been better. Physically, Gillian Anderson was perfect, but she's better at doing the more tortured, brooding type of thing -- if only she'd shown some of the vivaciousness she later brought to "A Cock & Bull Story"!

If you're saying, "Shut up, Rachel, you're being a critic and it's not adorable," then you're right. So here's a picture of Queen Gillian as Lily Bart instead.


(source: Google?)


What is your opinion of book clubs? Have you read The House of Mirth or any Edith Wharton? If so, was Gilded Lily was a good manicure choice? Did you pick up this polish last year, or any other of the Prabal Gurung/SH ones? And re: Prabal Gurung, did you buy anything from his Target collection? I'm going to check it out shortly, but I'm allergic to a lot of the materials and I'm currently in a small town so I'm not expecting a miracle. Lily Bart would probably scoff at the idea of designers doing affordable Target collections, don't you think?

Thursday, February 7, 2013

#sixseasonsandamovie and Essie Boxer Shorts

Between work, life, MAJOR APARTMENT DRAMZ and a renewed interest in knitting, I've been pressed for blogging time. This post is later than usual, but Happy October 19th!


 
(source: piercinald)


This "sexy" construction worker outfit is by far one of Dean Pelton's tamest ensembles, but it's still fairly outlandish, bless him. Anyway, the big news (for the two of you who haven't heard) is that "Community" returns tonight for a fourth season! I spent the last few weeks catching up on all the past episodes I've missed. At first I was beyond excited for the show to come back, but after reading some posts from my TV critic idols* yesterday, let's just say that the seeds of worry have been planted. :/

*(One, I trust these critics because I've been reading their work for eight years and their passion for the medium is obvious; two, I've been pleased to find that the programs they've championed are actually quite similar to the ones I love.)

From what I can gather, these worries stem from the new showrunners who were hired to replace "Community" creator Dan Harmon, who was fired in May. I'd like to actually watch up to five episodes before I start telling my friends how optimistic (or not) I am about the show's renewal; however, I do think the end of Season 3 was a nice way to go out, given what "Community" has been through with ratings, new showrunners, Chevy Chase's exit, etc. (You know, if it's true that Chevy Chase was an asshole of the highest degree, then I'm sad., but I actually really liked Pierce. It was Abed who I found grating ... although that may be because my sister says Abed is like me on steroids.)

Anyway, I knew I had to do a Greendale-centric post in celebration of tonight's season premiere. This occasion coincides with an unofficial top coat wear test I'm running for Anna, who also picked Essie Boxer Shorts over two other Essies I had.

For me, Boxer Shorts is a callback to a Season 1 episode "Physical Education," in which Jeff (Joel McHale's character) signs up for a billiards class and wears a leather jacket to make him look cool. This attempt backfires when Coach Bogner, the billiards instructor, says that his students have to wear gym shorts because billiards is seen as a phys ed class. This leads to Bogner accusing Jeff of being a hipster and thinking looking cool is more important than the game, Jeff challenging Bogner to a game of pool, and Bogner saying that he'll do it only if they both wear gym shorts. This also leads to them playing in their underwear and ultimately, dropping trou.

Enjoy. 3:51 KILLS ME EVERY TIME.




And now here's Boxer Shorts. Not quite gym shorts, but better.




Three coats with NYC Grand Central Station.









NGL, I've had a tendency to shy away from blogging polishes that are hard to capture, but Boxer Shorts photographed surprisingly well for me. Huh.

Is it weird that the first thing I thought after applying this polish was, "It's like Easter on my nails!"? Because IT IS, okay? This one can be a little bit of a chameleon. Sometimes it leans more on the purple side of periwinkle and sometimes it leans more blue, but when you place this next to, say Essie Lapis of Luxury or Essie Play Date, it's definitely periwinkle. I was pleasantly surprised for this color to make it into an Essie collection, as it's something I would have expected from a company like Illamasqua. I don't think this is a dupe for Orly Cashmere Cardigan or Revlon Modern Grace, but if you're missing those, this would be a great one to get; if you love those and need MOAR, then by all means, hunt this down.

No issues with formula or application here. You'll need at least two coats, though. The main reason I used three was because it looked uneven due to my dying bottle of Instant Artificials base coat -- dudes, base coat affects manis more than you think. I've used almost the entire bottle and it's gloopy af.

The real surprise was how well this polish wore with NYC Grand Central Station, a MUA nail board favorite and one of Madeline's. Grand Central Station has a thinner formula -- NOTHING like SV's -- so you don't need to load up your brush. The brush was great, too. It reminded me of the current Nicole by OPI brushes, not quite Pro-Wide, but it fans out to a good size. You can cover your nail bed with one, two good strokes. I'm still wearing this mani, so I'll let you know what happens. So far, I've had this on for two days with no chips or shower tip wear; this also dried fast enough for me to apply top coat and pick up a sandwich (Arby's super roast beef) and stuff my face with it three minutes later. Believe me, the ability to eat post-top coat is of UTMOST IMPORTANCE.

Boxer Shorts was unquestionably the star of last summer's Essie Yogaga collection. I bought this and two others up at Walgreens the minute I saw it, and ordered one more when I could never find it (you'll see them on the blog some time). I'm pretty sure this collection is retail-exclusive, because every bottle I saw had the Essie retail stickers on it. I can't even remember if this was at Ulta at all now! Oh, well. If you want Boxer Shorts, you can still grab it online (Beauty.com, Macy's, and Target all have it in stock), or try eBay. I know the nail blogosphere is really into glitters, but I've always loved cremes, and this collection with the exception of Marathin (WORST NAME EVER) was more appealing to me than the one with Bikini So Teeny.

Did you pick up Boxer Shorts or any of the other Yogagas? Who thinks Gym Dandy would have been a better choice for this post? Are you excited or scared for the "Community" premiere tonight? What's been your favorite moment of the show? Any favorite episodes? Who's your favorite character? Dean Pelton and Leonard are my favorite characters outside of the Greendale Seven. I think Troy might be my favorite right now probably because he's the most relatable to me. (Because, you know, I was a black male high school quarterback trying to find himself. I actually did have an incident during my last year of school, though it was FAR less violent than Annie's.)

Let's hope this season doesn't Britta itself! I'm sure NBC will do everything they can to help. And by that, I mean ... LOL NBC.

Friday, February 1, 2013

National Wear Red Day with Zoya Kimmy

Usually, I don't coordinate my nails with legit causes -- you know I love my TV posts -- but I can make an exception for National Wear Red Day. Heart disease is a very real thing on my mom's side of the family, and I know I don't take as much care of myself as I should (how ironic, considering what my parents' professions are), so it's good to be reminded of that every now and then, especially if said reminder involves me wearing something red and snazzy. I can do that.

I blogged a red polish for National Wear Red Day last year (those pictures, seriously. YUCK) and I wanted to do one again this year. I wasn't crazy about the polish I chose last year, Illamasqua Throb, and sadly I have to say I'm not crazy about this one, either. Kimmy is a great polish, but after you see my pictures, you'll see why I'm not digging it.




Three coats with Cult Nails Wicked Fast.









Although I know darn well that the same polish will look different on everyone (and with different lighting/camera conditions), I still hoped Kimmy would look the way it did in ALU's swatch. So you can imagine my reaction when it didn't.

I blogged Cult Nails Annalicious last month, and if you're wondering whether Kimmy and Annalicious are dupes ... they are not. While Kimmy also is a warm-toned red-based polish with golden sparkle, it has larger foil particles than Annalicious and thus appears slightly more metallic. Since Kimmy's gold foil particles are larger, it gives off a warmer cast than I would have liked.

I had no issues with formula or dry time here. You can get this done EASILY with two coats, because this polish is quite pigmented, which is always nice for a foil. I didn't have any problems with staining when I removed this (I doubled up on base coat, just in case), but little foil particles did stick to my nail bed and skin after removal.

Kimmy is from Zoya's Sunshine collection for Summer 2011. It's still easy to pick up, especially with promotions, which is how I got this bottle -- in December of that year, Zoya ran a spectacular one: four polishes, an 8 oz. bottle of Remove (with the flipper) and FREE SHIPPING for $25. I remember thinking, "HELLS, YES" and being late to lunch with my parents because I was finalizing my order, LMAO. The other polishes I got were Shay, Tao and Ivanka, all of which I love, so all in all, not a bad impulse buy, right?

Tell me what you think about Kimmy, the best damn Zoya promo you've ever pounced on, or what you'll be doing (and wearing!) for National Wear Red Day. I haven't figured out how to post facts and statistics on this blog without sounding like a robot who copied and pasted a few things, so once again, here's the link: http://goredforwomen.org/wearredday/

By the time this post goes up, I'm probably slogging through two miles on the treadmill (I've been doing it every day I don't have to go to the office), and those two miles will help me log 5 miles for the week. I am working up to running a mile in under 20 minutes, something I haven't been able to do in years (my fastest time was somewhere between 7-9 minutes in middle school). A friend and I are challenging each other to lose 10 pounds by May and another 10 by the end of September -- I'm not doing so hot with that right now, especially since I plan on drinking a fair amount this weekend. Oddly enough, forcing myself to get on the treadmill is easier for me than dieting (gross) or counting calories (THE WORST.) ... but whatever works, right?

Sometimes, I think about this one guy from high school who was my friends' friend and how he lost a crapton of weight. I actually didn't recognize him one time when he showed up at someone's house because he was looking really good in the face and at first I thought he went to another school, LMAO. I was later informed that he'd DDRed his chunk away. Seriously. DDR. I was howling. He and another guy used to compete in tournaments and shit. I have no idea what happened to him, but I guess the point of that story is that if I pretend I'm having fun, then maybe 10 pounds won't be so hard to shed.