Monday, February 24, 2014

HARE polish Damn Fine Coffee

Sorry this post is so late, you guys. I've had a few things competing for my attention this weekend; shockingly, most of them were more important than posting. But I really wanted to make sure this particular post went up today!

If you know TV shows (or know someone who has freakish recall), then you'll know today is the day FBI Agent Dale Cooper drove into Twin Peaks ... and into our hearts. Yeah, I said it. I'll level with you: all the residents of Twin Peaks overact pretty melodramatically and hilariously (except for Princess Audrey Horne), so Agent Cooper literally was a breath of fresh air.

When HARE polish announced a new "Twin Peaks"-inspired winter collection near the end of last year, I'm pretty sure I (1) squealed in excitement and then (2) texted Madeline. However, since my order was full of holiday polishes, I limited myself to only one "Twin Peaks" polish. If I'd chosen Wrapped in Plastic, I would have blogged it today, but I was pretty obsessed with brown last fall. Plus, THIS NAME. Much like Coop, it's just TOO PERFECT.

Three coats with SV.

There is too much to love about this polish. The brown jelly base is gorgeous, and the red and gold flake pieces mixed with iridescent hex glitters are too gorgeous. My only quibble, color-wise, is that I would have loved for the red? pink? microglitters to be bigger, but I think I'm just nitpicking. Still. I love it.

Out of all the HAREs I've used so far (probably five?), this one had the gloopiest formula. It wasn't godawful, but be advised that if your bottle is as gloopy as mine was, then you only need to load the tip of your brush (heh @ that sentence). Otherwise, spreading the polish on the nail is not a good time. I think it must have been the combination of glitters? Not sure. But this requires three coats for opacity. Dry time was faster than I thought it would be! I'm stoked to say that I wore this for four days with barely visible tip wear and chipping on one finger (you know the one) after Day Four.

Damn Fine Coffee was released as part of the HARE Welcome to Twin Peaks collection for Winter 2013. It's currently OOS at both the official HARE Etsy shop and Llarowe, but be sure to follow the HARE Facebook and/or sign up for the HARE newsletter for restock updates. I promise you, HARE is totally worth the restock madness. I've loved most of my HARE purchases; the ones I didn't love were a mild "I like it" at worst, so you could say this is my favorite indie brand. :)

Anyone else a "Twin Peaks" lover (aside from Madeline and myself)??? I didn't bother finishing the show once I found out who Laura Palmer's killer was; I hear I didn't miss much. The totally early '90s fashion kills me. Oh my God. If you could be as beautiful as Audrey Horne and Donna Hayward in the '80s and '90s ... I can't even.The early episodes are hella fun to watch, though.

Which brings me to this: If you want to rewatch the series or try it for the first time, all the episodes are up on Hulu! They're also on, but only Hulu has the pilot. Also, if you like "Psych," the season five episode "Dual Spires" is an amazingly thorough "Twin Peaks" homage. I think I might watch that episode tonight, actually. It's too funny. (Plus, Dana Ashbrook's hair is still insane to me.)

This wasn't in the promo I just shared, but the whole town gathering once a week to watch "Everwood" line almost had me on the floor.

Anyway, if you're into "Twin Peaks," who's your favorite character? You know, someone who's not ... this guy?


Anyone else have this HARE, or any other "Welcome to Twin Peaks" polishes? Wrapped in Plastic and Knockouts of the Double R might well jump into my cart when I place my next order.

Thanks for reading, and I hope to post *at least* once more this week! --Yes, I will backdate this entry's post time to 11:30 a.m. as soon as the next post goes up. ;)

Friday, February 21, 2014

L'Oréal Members Only (!!!)

This time last week, my area of Virginia was covered by slightly over two feet of snow, which is an unheard of amount in the south. (I ought to know, I've been living in Virginia for 20 years; the blizzard of '94 is the only extreme craziness I can think of.) Anyway, this pretty much meant that my Valentine's weekend with B and Mr. Meowmeow was out of the question. I didn't know if the roads were clear, and with that much snowfall, what normally would have been an almost 3-hour trip would have become just a little too far to go to get laid. #realtalk

Nothing at that point was going to make me feel better, but I decided I could start by watching "To Wong Foo" and putting a bright pop of color on my nails. I texted Steff with three drugstore pinks: a Sinful, an SH Xtreme Wear, and this L'Oréal. Once she texted me back, I started the DVD and reached for the remover.

You know what? I *did* feel a little better. As Vida Boheme said, sometimes it just takes a fairy.

Oh, and a seriously bright pop of pink.

Three coats with NYC Grand Central Station.


So, uh ... GOOD CHOICE, Steff.

I didn't pay much attention to the L'Oréal Trend Setter collection when it debuted at the beginning of last year. In fact, I only picked up Members Only last August when I saw it on clearance at Target! Shame on me, though. I really, REALLY love this polish. As pinks go, this isn't unique, but let's just say that if I had to go abroad for three months, I would take this with me. It's not too warm or too cool -- just perfect. I know it's not cool to like pink and I didn't for a long time (after I was 6, anyway), but pink usually looks awesome on me, so I decided not to fight it.

So was its formula. It was pretty much a dream, and very easy to work with. I'd actually classify it as a jelly-creme because this had a fairly squishy quality to it. I think if you're reeeeeally careful, you can get away with using one coat, but it's not going to be as dark of a pink as it would be if you used at least one more coat. Nor would it look as squishy, IMO. Anyway, dry time was quite fast with Grand Central Station. I shockingly fell asleep before the movie was finished, and my nails were perfect when I woke up, no sheet marks, no nothing. I wore it for four days without chips, just some tip wear from doing LOTS of dishes.

Members Only was one of six polishes in L'Oréal's Trend Setter collection. As I said, I bought this on clearance at Target last August, so I'm not sure if it's core or anything; I do remember, however, that all six Trend Setter polishes were included in core L'Oréal displays for most of last year. Other than the L'Oréal Gold Dusts, I tend not to notice L'Oréal polishes ... I'm not sure why, because if they're as great as the Gold Dusts and Members Only, I'm really missing out! You can pick up Members Only online at the Target and Walmart web sites if this post is giving you the grabby hands. ;) Again, I have to stress that it's not unique ... but I am insanely into it.

That's just me. I'm interested to know what you think of this polish, though! When was the last time you fell in love with a clearance purchase? What was the last polish you wore as a pick-me-up? If you like pink polishes, what's your current favorite? I think this might be a little darker and more blue than OPI Hey Baby, which I'm trying to resist at the moment.

Thanks so much for reading this week! I hope you guys have a great weekend. Come back on Monday, because I have something really cool to show you!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Funky Fingers Mrs. Mint

Did you know that today is National Chocolate Mint Day?

Don't worry, I didn't know this was a thing either until last November, when I was Googling chocolate mint cake recipes for my boyfriend's birthday. As I said back then, he LOVES chocolate mint anything. I used to love chocolate mint as a kid (does anyone remember Viennetta ice cream?), but I'm not super fond of that flavor now. I do like mint on my nails, though. It's nice.

I have to say I'm not entirely happy with these photos ... they're okay, although something seems off to me. If I have time, I'll try to swatch it during my next swatching marathon. The weird thing is, even though I think they're a bit off, I still feel they're more accurate than many of the photos that turned up when I did a Google image search for Mrs. Mint, especially my first three photos. (Can you tell I got home eager to swatch, only to find I was losing light?)

Four coats with NYC Grand Central Station.

I was in the mood for green one weekend, so I brought a few options to Krysi's house one night and had her pick for me. She picked Funky Fingers Mrs. Mint, which is a minty, seafoamy, blue-leaning mint with golden shimmer. That shimmer warms up the base color a little bit and adds a somewhat pearly finish to it, but this definitely leans blue in most lights. It's gorgeous! (And super unique to my stash.)

Mrs. Mint's formula and application, however, weren't what I was expecting. I expected as a pastel, it would be a little chalky. It was, but if I left the bottle open too long, it also was the slightest bit goopy, but nothing that working carefully couldn't prevent. It's opaque at three careful coats, but I needed four because it was dark and I wasn't completely satisfied. ;) This also dried semi-matte, so I did need top coat to make it shine. You guys, I was *so* impressed with this one's wear with NYC Grand Central Station! I had this on for four days with ZERO CHIPS and only the least visible amount of tip wear (but the kind that chalky pastels give you, which is normal to me). !!!

I bought Mrs. Mint at Five Below back in July with the house 3 for $5 deal, but I can't remember if it still was available at Five Below when I popped in at the end of January. Sorry, guys. But I DO know that they still had a full bin of Jawbreaker! If you're able to get Mrs. Mint on your hands -- or your hands on it -- then it's worth it.

Oh, and this was the polish I wore the weekend I met Stephanie's fiance for dinner in Richmond. I have been told he observed that it was mint. Well done, Ben! It was pretty dark at the restaurant, but I guess when you're with a polish addict collector, you'll probably notice a few things. ;)

What do you think of Mrs. Mint? What's your favorite obscure food holiday? Most importantly, who else remembers Viennetta?

Thanks for reading! Hope to see you back on Friday.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Skinny Dipping (With Friends): Orly Prelude to a Kiss

Thought I was done with the Valentimes, did you? >:)

Behold Orly Prelude to a Kiss, a lovely pastel peach from the Orly Cool Romance collection for Spring 2012. (I blogged Jealous, Much? last year.)

I think this is the peach polish I have been waiting for all my life.

Three coats with SV.

I actually gasped a little bit when I put this on, because where has this peach been all my life?!?!?! IIRC, Prelude to a Kiss was the only Cool Romance polish I *had* to have in spite of its gag-inducing name. It's soft, but not stark, and it doesn't go orange. WIN. Oh, and I think I wear it pretty well. :)

I really liked the formula, too. Pastels are notoriously streaky, so I was expecting the worst. Instead, what I got was awesomeness. This one was pretty easy for me to work with -- polish carefully, and you will have delicate peach perfection in three opaque coats. Dry time was good. I loved the way this looked on me, and I can't wait to trot this one out again come spring!

As I said, Prelude to a Kiss was from the Spring 2012 Cool Romance collection. I don't remember where I got my bottle, but this is in the core Orly display at Sally's and Ulta, so DEFINITELY go check this out the next time you have a BOGO, B2G1, or an insanely good coupon deal. It's worth it, I promise.

What do you think, though? Great nude? Perfect peach? You know my feels. I also feel that this was a great way to wrap up Valentine Week, which I hope you enjoyed! It was a lot of fun for me, and I hope I can do it again next year. :)

One more thing: Anna, my partner in nude polish hoarding, has changed her blog name from Business Lady Polish to Mitten State Prepster. So when you check out her Skinny Dipping selection today, don't forget to update your reading list with her new URL: Cool? Cool cool cool.

Thanks for reading, and I'll see you for a post on Thursday that most definitely WILL be on time. :)

Friday, February 14, 2014

Shopping My Stash: Funny Valentine

Welcome to Shopping My Stash, Valentine Edition. Sure, I've been posting Valentiney things for a few days, but I'm also going to share my favorite Valentine's Day tradition with you today. It's a good thing we're all friends here (right?), or else this might be a little weird.

See, every year on Valentine's Day -- or as close to the day as possible -- I watch the Season 6 "ER" episodes where Lucy and Carter get stabbed. Nope. Not weird. At all. (And that is so not a spoiler, people -- this was 14 years ago!)

"ER" was my absolute favorite show when I was in my tweens and teens. I wanted to be a doctor when I grew up (HA!). If you grew up in the '90s, you know how popular "ER" was. (Like, no matter how smug and smarmy George Clooney gets in his old age, I will love him forever for being on that show.) Although "ER" went on to have a whopping fifteen seasons, I'm quite partial to the early ones. They were the best. To me, the sixth season of the show was the end of the 'early' years, and the stabbings of Lucy and Carter play into that.

Those episodes took place on Valentine's Day. The second part was called "All in the Family." The first one? "Be Still My Heart."

Allow me to present OPI Bastille My Heart, because you know I CANNOT resist a pun.

Three coats with SV.

Looks pretty luscious, doesn't it? Funny story about these photos, I was having a bitch of a time trying to get some I liked outside and in natural light. So I threw in the towel and snapped some under my Ott Lite. As you can see, that turned out MUCH better! I guess I've gotten so accustomed to using natural light that it freaks me out when some polishes don't really "turn out" in that setting, and Bastille My Heart was a good reminder of this.

Anyway, I think the color is gorgeous. It can lean a little dark in some lights, but it's also got this insane glow, which I am just crazy about. I Googled this polish before blogging it, and it looks so different in early (read: 2008-9) photos! I'm not sure if that's because OPI sort of tampered with the color since its original release in 2008, or because the camera game of 2008-era nail bloggers was not anywhere near what they're at now. I got my bottle in 2012-ish, so mine is a cool burgundy/wine color with violet shimmer.

Formula and application were good, but I recommend thin coats and a light touch to avoid pooling, flooding and staining -- red shimmers are notorious for this. I didn't wait as long in between coats as I should have, so you definitely can see my unsuccessful attempt to clean up around my cuticles. Bastille My Heart looks good and is opaque at two coats, but you know I prefer three. Dry time was good. I'm wearing this this weekend, so I haven't had it on too long. I'll update this post with my wear report. :)

Bastille My Heart was released in Fall '08 as part of La Collection de France, and it's in the core line now. You can pick it up just about anywhere! I got my bottle at a dusty sometime during 2012 -- so while this IS old, it hasn't been in my stash *that* long. Technicality! But this isn't an Olympic committee (or is it?), so ... who cares? :D Man, that France collection was full of gems for me. Parlez-Vous OPI? was my JAM (and my Easter '09 mani), YDKJ was everything, Tickle My France-y was my first nude ... memories!

Guys, it snowed here in SW VA. And I mean SNOWED. I know Southerners cannot handle a flake, but look at how much it snowed at my parents' house. This is their cul-de-sac. That blob on the left is MY CAR.

The official count is 19" but I swear to you we got maybe 22", which *never* happens here! Unless a miracle happens tomorrow morning, I am basically snowed in. I usually wouldn't mind this, but it's my Notaversary with B, so I'm kiiiiiind of going through the five stages of grief. (Right now, I'm at anger.) I had a tough week, so all I was really looking forward to was hanging out with my Valentine. He's my favorite.

Actually, I think that face was less about seduction and more "WAKE UP GURL, WAKE UP RIGHT MEOW AND GET OUTTA MY BED." But you didn't hear it from me.

As soon as I'm done fighting for a Weezer ticket (my wait time is approximately FOREVER; I was ambivalent about this show until 20 minutes before tickets went on sale and then I HAD TO HAVE one. This site is so slow because (1) Ticketmaster, and (2) Rob Zombie tix also went on sale this morning), I'm off to watch my "ER" episodes. Not only was there a blue Valentine cake, but Dr. Corday's mother was in town for a conference and Dr. Romano made the staff operate on his Bouvier, Gretel.

Do you think this OPI is indeed Valentine-worthy? Do you have any weird Valentine traditions? I'd love to hear them! Don't forget to visit Short 'n Chic to see Steff's Valentimes. :) I (we?) hope you have a good Valentine's Day! Nicolas Cage wishes you one, too.

Best. Movie. Ever.

Okay, seriously, Ticketmaster, RELEASE MY FREAKIN' TICKET ALREADY. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Valentine Week: Essie Big Spender + HARE polish Test Your Love!

REALLY excited for today's post for two reasons, mostly because I miraculously have been able to post every day this week. But also ... I think you'll enjoy this combination!

I've had Essie Big Spender since the spring of 2010 (I actually bought this in an Essie B2G1 at Ulta when I got Essie Playa del Platinum), but for some reason I never wore it. The Resort 2010 collection had just come out and I wasn't sure if I wanted Splash of Grenadine, so I opted for Big Spender instead because to my eye, it was an exact match for one of my favorite skirts. Sadly, I no longer fit in this skirt because I am at my "scary weight"TM Steff, so having this color on my nails will have to do until I lose some of my chunk. Let's call a spade a spade, friends: I'm chunky, and this nail polish is beautiful!

Shown here are three coats of Big Spender, topped with NYC Grand Central Station.

In the bottle, Big Spender looks a pinch warmer than it actually is. I was happy to find that it was in fact quite cool on the nail. I don't know why, but I LOVE colors like this on me and the formula was perfect. Definitely keeping this one.

Big Spender has been around just a little longer than I've been into nail polish. I don't know if Essie had a name for its Fall 2008 collection, but that's when this originally came out. Since then, it's made its way into the permanent line -- I want to say both in retail and salon displays -- so it's very easy to find.

BTW, here is what I think of when I hear the words "big spender."

That, and "HEY, BIG LOBSTER" from "Futurama."

So, great. This is gorgeous. But then I remembered I've been wanting to try HARE polish Test Your Love! for a while, only it's too sheer to wear on its own (to me, anyway). I figured Big Spender would make a great base color, and rushed to experiment.

This is three coats of Test Your Love! + NYC Grand Central Station over Big Spender.

Ugh, my hands and cuticles are so dry. I'm so sorry.

As Anna would say, this is MAJ. The flakie effect was nice after two coats, but I piled on oooooooone more because I wanted to see if it it would add any more depth to this look. It did, a little bit. And Test Your Love! has a slightly warm base, so it warmed up Big Spender somewhat.

Only recently have I begun to be interested in flakie toppers, so I have to note that Test Your Love! was really easy to work with. It dried smoothly on the nail, which was nice. I think my only problem with it was that I prefer polishes that can be built up to opacity. Additionally -- and this is true of glitter toppers -- I tend to prefer layering topper polishes that can go over almost any color. I'm not super imaginative, and I don't see myself being able to layer Test Your Love! over anything that isn't pink or fuchsia or raspberry, so ... into the blog sale pile it goes.

Test Your Love! was part of the four-piece Coin Operation collection from last fall. This one might not have been a total win for me, but I still have my eye on Peepshow Magique and Zoltar Speaks -- those, I might be able to have more fun with. However, you still can nab Test Your Love! on the HARE polish Etsy for $10 or on Llarowe for $12. HARE is one of my favorite indie brands, so I'm still glad I was able to try this one.

What did you guys think of this Valentine layering combination? I thought it was fun to try something different this week. And I'm glad I finally tried both polishes, since who knows HOW LONG I would have waited otherwise! (This could be said of everything I blogged in the past week, though.)

Thanks for reading, and come back tomorrow for Shopping My Stash. I'm pretty excited for this month's pick. :)