Sunday, August 31, 2014

And the Skinny Dipping Turns 2 Giveaway Winner is ...

We hope our readers in the U.S. are enjoying this long Labor Day Weekend! One of you is about to have a weekend that just got better, because I'm announcing the Skinny Dipping Turns 2 giveaway winner. :)

Congratulations, Leissa!

I've emailed Leissa, and hope to hear from her soon. If I do not, a new winner will be chosen after 48 hours.

Anna and I want to thank you so much for entering our giveaway, and to thank you for keeping up with this feature! We're so excited to see what the next year will bring. Also, please keep sending nude polish recommendations our way -- we love hearing them. :)

Again, congrats to Leissa, and have a fun and safe Labor Day weekend. xo

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

RGB Cosmetics Fuchsia

Happy hump day, friends. I meant for this post to go up yesterday before my eye appointment, but clearly it didn't happen. There is SO MUCH going on in my life right now (nothing good or bad, just ... change, I guess? C'est la vie) that finding time to blog or work on blog content is suuuuuuuuuuuuuuch a struggle. Obviously I am better about it some days than others, and obviously Real Life Comes First, but blogging has been a tremendously helpful outlet for me -- I've been needing this a lot lately, only I keep doing this thing where I choose sleep instead.

Anyway, for today I've got RGB Fuchsia, a polish I've been trying to blog since last year (!) without success until a couple of weekends ago when I finally figured out how to manipulate my phone camera settings. Colors like this are so tricky to capture, and I was ecstatic when I *finally* got these photos. If you'll allow me to fluff my own feathers, they're gorgeous!

Also, I love jewel tones. I don't care that it's August. I thought I wanted to keep my summer colors a little longer, but you know what, I'm actually very excited for fall. (As usual.)

Four coats with SV.

Gorgeous, but I think you'll easily be able to see where I got off board with Fuchsia. See that shimmer? I prefer shades that are warmer, and the cool blue/violet shimmer is too prominent for me. Not a bad problem to have, but this is enough of an issue for me to reach for this polish often, so it will be living with my friend (and favorite bartender), Jo Anne.

Otherwise, formula and application were really good! This was the first RGB non-metallic shimmer I've used; I've always liked RGB's formula, and Fuchsia was no exception. The only thing I noticed was that the first coat goes on a little sheer, probably because of the shimmer, but after three coats it's perfectly opaque. I opted for an additional coat because I wanted to see if it would deepen/enrich the color, and it sort of did, but I think that's the most color you'll get out of it. Either way, it's really nice, just too purple for me. Dry time was fast with SV, too.

Fuchsia goes for $18 USD on the RGB Cosmetics site, b-glowing, Dermstore, and (I think b-glowing & are sort of the same? Don't quote me on this!) I understand $18 is kind of pricey, but if you subscribe to the RGB mailing list (bottom right corner of the RGB site), you'll be able to find out when they're having a sale, which is most likely how I came to acquire this one. I don't blog RGB polishes often for some strange reason, but trust me, they are quality! If I don't like one, it's probably because it didn't look great on me.

Also, obligatory:

Saying it now and IDGAF: I LOVED Fuchsia. As for this miniseries, two out of three parts were good, and Jonathan Rhys Meyers was a perfect Steerpike. The source material doesn't exactly lend itself to film, and I'd be kind of scared if it were to be attempted again these days if the director and production team wasn't quite right. Dang, I gotta rewatch this miniseries soon. Maybe this weekend? Hm.

Any thoughts on this polish? Your favorite jewel tone polishes for fall (or all year)? Is there an RGB polish you want me to blog in the coming months? Any other lovers of Gormenghast (the books or the mini) and Lady Fuchsia Groan? --Although my sister did not read the books, she enjoyed Fuchsia's mother, but if you like cats as much as they do, then you probably will, too.

Thanks for reading! If I can figure out when to do it, there might be a post on Friday. It's clearly not a guarantee at this point, but there's an 80% chance I'll be able to get back to blogging at least twice a week once October comes along. So yeah, is it fall yet?

P.S. As of today, U.S.-based readers have 4 more days to enter to win four of Anna's and my favorite nude polishes! Who knows, one of them could be your perfect shade, so what are you waiting for? Click on the image atop Stuff's right sidebar, or click [HERE] to see the rules and Rafflecopter form.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Pink Wednesday: Pretty Serious Cosmetics CGA

In case you missed Monday's egregiously late Skinny Dipping post, you missed a major giveaway announcement: Anna and I are giving away 4 of our favorite nude polishes to one lucky reader on August 31! Click [HERE] for contest rules and the Rafflecopter form. :)

Now, I'm preeeeeeeeetty sure Pink Wednesday nail posts are no longer A Thing these days, but indulge me. Today, I've got a polish I've been attempting to blog for two months. Say hello to Pretty Serious CGA!

Three coats with SV.

Sadly, CGA is another case of Like, But Not Love. It's the color. I should have gone with my gut instinct and skipped it -- if I wasn't in love with it on Scrangie, how was I going to love it on me? LOL. The magenta/orchid tones of this polish realllllllly kind of blends in with my skin tone and makes me look dead, which I am not crazy about (in that sense, it reminded me of my warped bottle of Orly Frolic). That really gave me a sad, because CGA is the third polish from Hello World that I didn't quite love on me. Ladies, I have to say that I adore the motif of the collection. I'm not an out and out computer/tech geek (I mean, I remember going to Babbage's with my dad, I used to love Jonny Lee Miller in "Hackers" so much that it defied sense, and the summer before ninth grade, I read this book called The Cuckoo's Egg, which, LOVE -- and not just for the chocolate chip cookie recipe in the footnotes), but I totally cackled when I saw the names of everything in the collection because it was all too perfect. This polish is no exception. The cyan? turquoise? aqua? shimmer against the magenta *is* CGA in nail polish. Google "cga graphics" if you don't know what the heck I'm spazzing about.

Oh, and the formula was great. I think it was opaque in two coats, but don't quote me on this because I don't remember. (Sorry!) Some of my Pretty Serious polishes tend to be on the gummy side, like my RBL shimmers can get, but I've never had a problem with them. They go on the nail very easily and dry quickly, which I always appreciate.

CGA was from the Pretty Serious debut collection, Hello World! from the late spring? early summer? of 2012. (You guys. That was TWO YEARS AGO, WHAT EVEN?) Although ANYWAY, if you're interested in picking up CGA, it's being discontinued from the core line, so hop over to the Pretty Serious shop and grab it while it's $4.95. I don't remember whether I got this off a blog/Storenvy sale or directly from the Pretty Serious clearance sale, but I know I didn't have this polish before May of this year. (Steff, maybe you would like this one? Let me know!)

Any thoughts on CGA? What was the last color that didn't quite work on you? Did you ever watch "Hackers" back in the day? I'd love to know! It's sooooooooooooo terrible, but JLM was kind of darkly dreamy in the '90s (can we talk about "Trainspotting"? Or, even though it was 2009, his Mr. Knightley in "Emma"? MY GOD).

Oh, and don't forget to enter our Skinny Dipping giveaway! ;) Again, there's a link at the beginning of this post, as well as on the sidebar of this blog. Now you know.

Thanks for reading! I'm trying to finish up with a post for Friday, but we'll have to see -- I'm not in a great mood today, so I don't know if I'm going to feel like blogging when I get home from work. Ugh, is it Saturday yet?????

Monday, August 18, 2014

Skinny Dipping (With Friends) Turns 2! featuring China Glaze Five Rules, AND A GIVEAWAY!

Late as usual, but this time it's because Comcast is the wooooooooooooooorstTM Jean-Ralphio Saperstein. It's okay, though. I'm here now and I'm ready to celebrate TWO FRICKIN' YEARS of Skinny Dipping (With Friends)! I can't believe Anna and I have been doing this every month for two years -- okay, we adjourn in December to blog Christmas polishes -- but still! And I'm so happy to have a partner who gets just as excited about nude polishes as I do. That helps make this adventure more fun!

Fun? Hold that thought. I'll come back to that.

But first, this is China Glaze Five Rules, from their tie-in Colour Your Destiny collection with the film version of "The Giver" (which met with both lukewarm and abrasive reviews upon its release last weekend). I picked up three CYD polishes the first time I saw the display back in July; I already blogged Capacity to See Beyond, so Five Rules makes the Number 2 out of 3. :)

I feel like I have something similar to Five Rules, but I ain't even mad. I love it.

Three coats with SV.

So yeah, I think we can say I liked Five Rules just as much as the critics did not like the movie. The formula was creme polish perfection, so I would have to be stupid to get rid of this. And while this color is not all that unique, I am not one to kick a flattering neutral shade out of my stash! Five Rules definitely resides in the putty/greige neighborhood, but it doesn't have overly greenish or reddish tones. Obviously in certain lights you can see the grey stone cast better than in others. In fact, here are 2 photos that I thought pulled out the grey tones rather well:

Sooooooooo gorgeous. I love it. If you're looking for it, the Colour Your Destiny is out now and it's limited edition, so go grab it before it's gone. I did because you know me and my LE Disease ... it's a problem. :)

Any thoughts on this polish? Did you go see the movie last weekend? If you did, I'm curious to hear what you think. I think I'll wait till this can come to Redbox or something. Oh, and if you want me to see another Colour Your Destiny polish here, leave a comment with your request -- the first one I actually have, I'll blog it in the coming weeks.

Next on the agenda: Anna and I wanted to thank you for reading Skinny Dipping for two years, so we took the liberty of putting together a little giveaway! One lucky U.S.-based reader will win four of our favorite nude polishes, all previously blogged as Skinny Dipping entries. It's pretty easy to guess who picked what!

From left to right:

This giveaway is open to U.S. readers following via Google Friend Connect (apologies to our international friends!) until Saturday, August 30 at 11:59 p.m. EST. One winner will be chosen and announced on August 31. That lucky lady will be given 2 days to respond to an email from one of us, so please reply as soon as you can! If you don't, we will have to choose another winner. (--And yes, I will pay more attention this time so we don't have a repeat of what happened on my last giveaway, hahaha.)

Please fill out the Rafflecopter form to enter the giveaway and find out how you can make additional entries. Good luck!

From the bottom of our hearts, thank you so much! We hope you've loved Skinny Dipping as much as we love this feature. <3

Friday, August 15, 2014

Shopping My Stash: White wears, summahtime edition

I always feel like a drag every month when I text Steff to ask if she has any ideas for our next stash shopping posts because I feel like I bug her, only for me to end up posting wayyyyyy later in the day. But real life was so crazy last week that I knew I wasn't going to be able to post at all last Friday, which is why you're getting Shopping My Stash today. (Thanks, Steff!)

Steff came up with the idea of posting a white or a pastel to play off of the "no white after Labor Day" cliché, especially since Labor Day will come before our September stash shopping post. The white I originally wanted to use for this post was super uncooperative (and better suited to my White Hot Wednesday feature), so I used another polish instead: OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls, which also happens to be one of Steff's favorite polishes. I chose a white(-ish) creme because I tend to associate white shimmers and glass flecks with the winter holiday season, but cremes are great at evoking the crisp and cool feeling most of us chase in warmer months.

I cannot believe I've owned this polish for 2 summers and did not wear it until last week. FOR SHAME.

Oh, and for the record, my boyfriend does not scale walls. But if we really need to reach (for the purposes of this post), he and Peter Parker both work with journalists.

Three coats with SV.

My Boyfriend Scales Walls is a lovely white creme with a few cool drops of grey. I can't think of any dupes for this. Color Club Silver Lake seems more grey, and China Glaze New Birth (from the new Colour Your Destiny tie-in collection with "The Giver") seems warmer than MBSW. In any case, this polish looks good on everybody. (As a matter of fact, here's MBSW on Steff; if you read her blog, then you've seen her do lots of nail art with it as well.) And although I've been wearing white polish this summer, MBSW looks faded next to a true white creme. It actually took a few days for me to get used to wearing this, because my nails looked like I'd rubbed them on a pair of dark wash jeans. You know what I mean? It was pretty weird, but I got used to it after the third day.

Apart from MBSW being universally flattering, its formula is pretty incredible for a white. It was really easy to work with the second time I put it on for swatching purposes (I think the first time it was terrible because my base coats were on their way out), and dry time with SV was really fast. I wore it for four days last week, and it held on pretty well with no chips. The tip wear part was kind of interesting, though -- I had minimal tip wear on my left hand, but average tip wear on my right (my dominant hand). I washed my hands eleventy billion times last week, but I can't think of anything else that would explain the tip wear difference.

MBSW might not be a true oldie in my stash, but it's two years old! It was part of OPI's tie-in with "The Amazing Spider-Man" movie two summers ago (TERRIBLE movie, IMO). If you did not get a chance to grab this polish back then, it's really ETF online right now! You will love this, I promise. I don't understand why it's not core. It's awesome, which is no small feat for a white polish. I have loved my share of OPI reds and pinks, but I don't see why they couldn't remove one from their core line and include this instead!

What do you guys think? Any opinions about wearing white after Labor Day? Do you have OPI MBSW? If so, do you agree that it is awesome/universally flattering/should be core? Do you have any other OPI ASM polishes? I only have Number One Nemesis, but you know me, gotta have all the Chanel Graphite almost-dupes. I'm running low on time today, so I'll complain about "The Amazing Spider-Man" another time. To put it politely, I was extremely not a fan.

Thanks for reading! Don't forget to visit Short 'n Chic today and have a look at Steff's white polish of choice. If she's posting what I think she's posting, then I've never seen it blogged before, so I'm pretty stoked to see what she has to say about it. :)

Hope you all have a good weekend! I'll try to be back on Monday for Skinny Dipping. You will love the polish I'll share then ... at least, you'll love it on me! ;) #whatishubris

Monday, August 11, 2014

The Great Polish Giveaway of 2014 (by Nail Polish Canada)

I have not been the greatest blogger lately, so I was very surprised (and even more flattered) when I received an email last week from Nail Polish Canada, asking if I wanted to participate and add a prize in their epic giveaway of UP TO 200 POLISHES. This giveaway is open to Canadian and U.S. residents until August 15, so if you haven't already entered, do it!

Here's the form:

I had a hard time choosing a polish to add to this killer prize bag. I was torn between a white and a gold, only I ultimately went with a very yellow-leaning chartreuse: butter LONDON Wellies. Below are a few quick-and-dirty shots under my OttLite -- I think I would have been able to pull out the green tones more if I'd had some natural light, but I missed my window. This is three coats with SV.

I won't lie, I had a little bit of a "learning curve" when it came to application, but if you're a die-hard chartreuse lover, then the color payoff is everything. I would like to have a more thorough swatch & review post about Wellies, but I just don't have time right now. Maybe I can work on that this coming weekend.

ANYWAY, you can check out other bloggers' picks [HERE]. Good luck!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Stuff's 3rd Birthday Giveaway Winners!


I know I said I would announce the winners on Friday, but my work schedule changed and I ended up having to go in. (Until last weekend, I was able to work from home on most Fridays, but work is work, right?) A long work day + family stuff = me falling asleep in the car on the way home, enough to the point where I faceplanted into my bed for the rest of the night.

Basically, I did not get a chance to do any blog stuff until Saturday morning. And then I made the mistake of not thoroughly going through y'alls entries and letting Rafflecopter do the work for me! Long story short, I done fucked up BIG TIME while contacting winners for the U.S. prize pack, so instead of having 2 winners, there now are 3. Because I made a mistake, the only way to make it fair was to assemble another set of polishes. If that's okay with y'all, that's more than okay with me!

Congratulations to Vi and Ali, who won the U.S. packs, and to Danielle, who won the international prize (the Sephora e-gift card)! I've e-mailed everyone and they've all replied, so everyone's prizes are on the way.

This should teach me to drink my coffee first, right? Ha.

A huge THANK YOU to all of you who entered! I loved reading your comments in the blog post, and hearing about your favorite polishes and movies (so far) of 2014. I personally cannot answer that question because it is wayyyyyyy too "Sophie's Choice" for my decision-addled brain, so you guys already bested me there.

I also wanted to thank you for reading and supporting this blog! There are innumerably more nail blogs now than there were when I first started blogging (and even starting to read nail blogs), so I truly appreciate that you take a few minutes out of your day to read mine. <3 This goes doubly if you leave comments, since I love interacting with my fellow lacquerheads. I hope to keep hearing from you!

P.S. Whether I have posts up this week depends on what time I get home from work. Shopping My Stash is scheduled for Friday -- I haven't picked out a polish yet, but fair warning, those photos might be really janky. :(