Monday, December 30, 2013

Wavelength French Manicure

I'm not one for traditional French manicures. I prefer something colorful, funky, and fun, or, at the very least, out of the ordinary. This is a French manicure that I would wear, and it can be customized with your favorite colors, too! The asymmetrical waves keep things can even match them up from nail to nail like I did and create one long wave-ribbon.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Watercolored Roses and a Textured Accent

I have been struggling a little with inspiration lately, as you may have noticed from my lack of posts! I'll discuss this more at the end of the post if you're interested, but for now let's talk about this nail art. What's an uninspired gal to do? Florals, of course! Nothing super groundbreaking here, but I am happy with the way they came out and I love the textured accent nail. Read on for more details about how I did this manicure.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Work/Play/Polish's Blogging for a Cause

Leslie from Work/Play/Polish is currently hosting a series of guest posters to benefit the charity Polished Girlz. For each guest poster that accepted, she has pledged to donate $10 to the organization, which hosts nail art parties for kids that are frequently hospitalized or terminally ill. They also tout the benefits of frequent hand washing to reduce infection and hospitalization. I know I'm all for using nail art to spread love and cheer to kids that need it!

I was invited to participate in her guest post series and of course I said yes! Please visit Work/Play/Polish for more photos, details, and chatter about this nail art. Leslie also wrote an introductory post featuring nail art by Alanna, the 13 year old founder of the organization. Please stop by if you have a moment!

Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Snuggly Pink Christmas Sweater Stamping

Hello my dears! I'm sorry I haven't had a nail post to share with you in a while -- I have been frantically Christmas shopping, running around, working... you know how the season can be! Today I have a stamping manicure that I have been wearing for the past two days or so. I started out thinking, "Oh, stamping! That will be quick and easy and fun!" but soon remembered that I am not good at stamping. Combine a lack of stamping skill with perfectionism and you are in for a long evening of re-dos!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

The Lipstick League – Week of 12-9-13

For the month of December, we’re super-sizing The Lipstick League and giving you double the fun from some members!

Question of the Week: What are some beauty products that you’d be delighted to receive as gifts this holiday season?
Sarah's Answer: I've been eyeing the Formula X for Sephora polishes. There are so many beauties! My favorite groups are the Xplosives glitter topcoats and the neon Electrics.

Beauty Junkies Unite - See what Amber thought were hits, and those that were misses in the new MAC RiRi Hearts MAC holiday collection!

Chalkboard Nails - There’s no better way to celebrate Pantone’s Color of the Year for 2014 than with some freehand radiant orchid nail art!
Chalkboard Nails - Get party perfect nails with five easy black and gold nail art ideas. Feeling bold? Try combining a few together!

Clumps of Mascara - Been itchin’ to try new nail polishes but the stores don’t seem to have anything up your alley? Support an indie nail polish brand!
Clumps of Mascara - So not beauty-related but c’mon...who doesn’t like pictures of Baby Clumps?

Gouldylox Reviews - Looking for the perfect holiday gift? Here's a list that takes care of everyone!
Gouldylox Reviews - Beauty products commonly use these tricks to play on your self-esteem. Don't let them trick you!

Lipglossiping - checks out the behind-the-scenes video featuring the much-awaited relaunch of Shu Uemura’s lipstick range.

My Beauty Bunny - We've got the scoop on Radical Skin Care This powerful (and effective!) anti-aging line is the buzz brand in Hollywood - find out why.
My Beauty Bunny - We're ALWAYS raving about DermOrganic's amazing hair care products. Want to try them yourself? Here's your chance to win two full size products!

Nouveau Cheap - Are the new Almay Shadow Softies cream shadows? Mousse shadows? Answer: neither.
Nouveau Cheap - Wet n Wild is discontinuing some products in 2014. Come see if your favorites made the cut.

Pink Sith - shares with you a famous holiday poem. "Twas the poem about the holidays that barely rhymed, but I show you gifts from ULTA Beauty so I know you won't mind."
Pink Sith - has a great gift idea for the men in your life. The Billy Jealousy Shave3Some is Mr. Sith approved!

Prime Beauty - attends so many holiday parties (haha) she needs flawless skin for all the pictures she'll be starring in (haha again). Renee Rouleau's Triple Berry Smoothing Peel does the trick and it's on sale!
Prime Beauty - explores the Indie Brand SENNA Cosmetics and likes what she finds!

Phyrra - I've launched my very own cruelty free, paraben free, vegan hair masque called Pretty Little Elixir! It's a must have for dyed or heat styled hair!
Phyrra - Love Chocolate? See if this sweet treat from Too Faced is for you! It's the Too Faced Chocolate Bar Eye Palette.

we heart this - took a field trip to 100% Pure in West Hollywood, a long time favorite of many of our team members. It was a sniff and scrub-a-polloza!
we heart this - bareMinerals Degrees of Dazzling is all kinds of beautiful. Check out the looks we posted and see if you agree...

Thursday, December 12, 2013

12 Days of Giveaways Day 12: OPI Mariah Carey Holiday Collection (CLOSED)

It's the final day of the 12 Days of Giveaways - I hope you all have enjoyed them! I know I have. I've already drawn winners for some of the earlier days, and for those of you that are curious, winners are emailed, announced via the giveaway widget, and posted on the CN Facebook page.

Of course I had to go out strong, so for the 12th day, one lucky US reader will win the entire 18 piece OPI Mariah Carey Holiday Collection, including all six Liquid Sand shades. OPI is a brand that is near and dear to my heart, and this is a great winter collection. There has to be something magical in these Sands that makes them extra gorgeous. Best of luck to all of you that are able to enter!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

12 Days of Giveaways Day 11: China Glaze Happy HoliGlaze Collection (CLOSED)

We are nearing the end of the 12 Days of Giveaways! Can you believe it? It seems like it has just flown past! I've got my two favorite brands lined up for the last two days, and up first is China Glaze. Their Happy HoliGlaze collection is turning the traditional holiday collection upside down with berry colored glitters, blues, purples, and metallics galore. Needless to say, these can be worn to great effect all year round! Five lucky US readers will get to take home the entire collection.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

12 Days of Giveaways Day 10: Sonoma Nail Art Polish Bundles (CLOSED)

Sonoma Nail Art is an indie brand run by my dear friend Michelle. Some of you may or may not know this, but I am actually her official brand swatcher! She has been a longtime supporter of me and this blog, and I am thrilled to be including Sonoma Nail Art in my 12 Days of Giveaways.

Today's giveaway will have two winners. The first winner drawn will have their choice of prize.
PRIZE ONE: The entire Handcar Regatta Collection (7 polishes, shown on the left)! This includes Steampunk, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Parasol, Airship, Clockwork, Raygun, and Aether.
PRIZE TWO: Sonoma Nail Art favorites pack (4 polishes, shown on the right)! This includes My Three Glitters (with special label inspired by my love of black and white glitters), Wine Country Wedding, Go to Napa for Auto Parts, and Sonoma Sunset.

Monday, December 9, 2013

12 Days of Giveaways Day 09: GlitterDaze Neon Glitter 3-Pack (CLOSED)

There are not many things more fun in life than neon glitter. Well, maybe that's a stretch, but I can certainly say that neon glitter is one of my favorite nail polish styles. There's something so fantastic about the semi-transparent, bright and bold slices of glitter! The GlitterDaze ColorPOP Collection has a wide range of neon glitter polishes, and for today's giveaway you can enter to win a 3-pack of my favorite polishes from the set. Three lucky readers will get to take home this fundle (fun + bundle)!

Pantone Color of the Year 2014: Radiant Orchid Nail Art

The Pantone color of the year for 2014 has been announced: meet Radiant Orchid! Pantone’s executive director describes the shade as “an enchanting harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones.” I think radiant orchid is a beautiful shade and I did my best to represent it in this freehand orchid nail art.

Glam Polish Assortment - Swatch and Review

It takes a lot for an indie brand to catch my eye these days in the vast sea of nail polish, but the Australian brand Glam Polish really sparked my interest. I've seen a lot of beautiful swatches of Glam Polishes lately and was very excited to give six of them a try for myself. Not only do these polishes have great formulas, they are adorable and fun color combinations! They are a breath of fresh air amidst the heaviness of the current winter collections.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

12 Days of Giveaways Day 08: Hand Care Favorites + piCture pOlish Siren Song (CLOSED)

I'm often asked what I do to care for my hands and nails. A huge part of the process is finding the right products! In today's giveaway, two of you will get to try out my preferred hand care routine (plus a gorgeous nail polish generously donated by Rebecca Likes Nails). This package includes: piCture pOlish Siren Song by Rebecca Likes Nails, CND Almond Soothing Creme, Duri Rejuvacote, Burt's Bees Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream, and a pair of cotton gloves.

The Lipstick League – Week of 12-2-13

For the month of December, we’re super-sizing The Lipstick League and giving you double the fun from each member!

Question of the Week: What’s your go-to body lotion for this time of year?
Sarah's Answer: I'm a horrible beauty blogger and I don't really use body lotion, although I know that I definitely should. I did recently pick up the St. Ives Lotion Spray but am having trouble using it with any sort of consistency. Whoooops...

we heart this - just turned four, but is giving YOU a present: a European holy grail giveaway - Lancome Erika F. eye shadow and Max Factor Fantasy Fire nail polish!
we heart this - What trumps RiRi Woo? Pleasure Bomb! Check out the RiRi hearts MAC Holiday collection and see if you agree.

Beauty Junkies Unite - Here's a chance to win all 20 shades inside the new bareMinerals 'Degrees of Dazzling' eyeshadow collection!
Beauty Junkies Unite - Amber shares several holiday gift ideas for the ultimate in affordable luxury.

Chalkboard Nails - Enter to win the Cirque Alchemy Collection and lots more in Chalkboard Nails’ 12 Days of Giveaways!
Chalkboard Nails - Have you tried any Formula X for Sephora nail polishes yet? Don’t miss this gorgeous cobalt blue glitter gradient!

Clumps of Mascara - I’m not a girl with a lot of desires. Or so I thought. My holiday wishlist has now doubled in size. Eek!
Clumps of Mascara - Girls, skin has been screaming for something more than just a basic scrub. M.Steves has saved the day with their glorious Reviving Exfoliator!

EauMG - has the ultimate holiday gift guide for vintage beauties! Stock the boudoir with red lipstick, powder puffs and fancy perfume atomizers! A must read for true glamour girls.
EauMG - step foot into a Parisian artist’s studio with this decadent, boozy, fruity patchouli perfume, Nez a Nez Atelier d’Artiste.

Gouldylox Reviews - Can a brush that looks like a toothbrush give you the makeup skills of a pro? Find out!
Gouldylox Reviews - The hair authority on DIY braids, buns and twists, Hair Romance, has a new book that you're going to need.

My Beauty Bunny - Just what is the deal with parabens and why is everyone so afraid of them? The answer may surprise you! Are the Parabens in Our Beauty Products Safe?
My Beauty Bunny - Check out Jen's new do by West Hollywood celeb hair stylist Marco Pelusi! Purchase his amazing hair care products during his Holiday Deal and receive a FREE travel sized Color Hydrate Conditioner.

Nouveau Cheap - Wet n Wild has a brand new 8-pan eyeshadow palette for 2014. Come take a look at some swatches!
Nouveau Cheap - The semi-annual CVS Beauty Clearance Sale is now underway. I’ve got a list of things you can expect to see reduced to 50-75% off. Stocking stuffers, anyone?

Prime Beauty - has put together her list of Top 10 Beauty Stocking Stuffers. Some may surprise you!
Prime Beauty - has several fantastic favorite sets from the tarte Gift of Giving Holiday 2013 Collection and you can win two of them so hurry and enter!

Phyrra - shares her Best Ways to Apply Loose Eyeshadow!
Phyrra - shares 6 Eye Makeup Mistakes You Don't Want to Make.

Guest Post of the Week, as chosen by we heart this - Sabrina from The Beauty Look Book shares the new Chanel nail colours and does what she always does so well; makes us want expensive things!

Saturday, December 7, 2013

12 Days of Giveaways Day 07: Hex Nail Jewelry Charm Sets (CLOSED)

You guys know that I love my Hex Nail Jewelry charms, so of course I couldn't do a lineup of giveaways without asking the Hexy ladies to join in on the fun! For today's giveaway, five lucky winners will get a starter set of their very own, including a heart, horseshoe, star, infinity sign, diamond, and cherries.

Party Perfect: Black and Gold Nail Art Ideas

I have been wearing a lot of black and gold manicures lately, and I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to highlight one of my favorite party pairings. Black and gold make a stunning combination: chic and glam, strong and bright, deep and dimensional. They're the perfect pair for all of your holiday soirees, and, great news, you can stretch them out through New Years!

I've got five looks to share with you today, plus I'll give you some quick breakdowns on how to achieve them yourself. Some are harder than others, but even beginner nail artists will find something to try here! Don't be shy... get your glam on!

Friday, December 6, 2013

12 Days of Giveaways Day 06: Pretty and Polished Winter Collection (CLOSED)

Pretty & Polished was my first indie polish experience ever and is still incredibly close to my heart today. This winter, Chelsea and the rest of the P&P team have released a fun collection of 9 shades that are intended to be wearable all year long. One lucky reader will have the opportunity to win the entire winter collection, which includes glitter, thermal, holo, and shimmer polishes! Check out the full lineup via Pretty & Polished, and then read on to enter to win.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

12 Days of Giveaways Day 05: MASH Nail Art Brush Sets (CLOSED)

Today's giveaway prize is one that is particularly close to my heart: the MASH Nail Art Brush kit! It has a ton of great brushes in a variety of shapes, sizes, and lengths, and I think that it's great for beginner nail artists and more experienced ladies alike. The medium length striper brush from this kit is one of my most used brushes, and the other brushes will let you experiment with a number of different techniques and styles.

Two lucky readers will win the entire 15 brush set, including the nifty organizational case. Read on to enter!

Formula X for Sephora Cobalt Blue Glitter Gradient

Sephora recently launched a new line of nail polish and I was very eager to try them out. The new line is called Formula X for Sephora, and the entire range consists of over 200 new colors. I ended up picking out two during a recent order, Formula X Hyped and Formula X TNT, and used them together in this cobalt glitter gradient. Read on for my thoughts and more photos of this manicure!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

12 Days of Giveaways Day 04: Vivid Lacquer Stamping Bundle (CLOSED)

We're four days into the 12 Days of Giveaways...are you pumped yet? I know I am! In today's giveaway, three people will win a stamping bundle from Vivid Lacquer. Each bundle will include plates VL006, VL009, & VL010, plus your choice of stamper (choose between harder or softer rubber). I can personally attest to the high quality of these plates, and I love the unique and creative designs that Vivid Lacquer comes up with! That fake "OPI Spotted" style image from VL009 is particularly brilliant, I think.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

12 Days of Giveaways Day 03: Cirque Alchemy Collection

It's day three of the 12 Days of Giveaways and I have an opportunity for you to win some polishes from one of my favorite indie brands: Cirque! One lucky winner will get to enjoy the full ten piece Alchemy Collection, compliments of Cirque. Look at those gorgeous polishes! Such a wonderful blend of shimmers, glitters, holos, glass flecks... what more could a polish lover ask for?

I haven't swatched these just yet, but I DO have them in my possession and I can tell you they are divine. Look out for a swatch post soon, but for now just trust me -- you want these babies. Read on and enter to win!

Limited Edition Holiday Trio from Lacquer Lust, Polished by KPT, and Serum No. 5

This holiday season, three indie polish makers have teamed up to create a limited edition holiday trio celebrating the three types of polishes that they each do best. Lacquer Lust has contributed a gorgeous holographic polish, Polished by KPT created a shimmering thermal, and Serum No. 5 came in strong with a glow in the dark! I think this is such a fun idea and a great collaboration.

Happy Birthday to Me! - Aqua and Purple Gradient

Today is my 25th birthday! This is the third birthday that I've celebrated on this blog (check out 2012 and 2011). I only got around to changing my polish around 11pm, so I was just going to put on some blingy glitter or something, but then I got this craving for a gradient and couldn't resist. Of course, I had to put a black and white glitter on top because UM HELLO black and white glitter is one of my favorite things!

Monday, December 2, 2013

12 Days of Giveaways Day 02: DIY Polish Jewelry Kits (CLOSED)

It's day two of the 12 Days of Giveaways and today I'm giving away the chance to experience some DIY fun! I enjoy making nail polish jewelry (and have been doing it for quite some time!). I wrote a tutorial for DIY polish jewelry waaay back in January 2012, and Rebecca Likes Nails published a great tutorial too.

One great thing about polish jewelry is that you can trap your favorite polishes and keep a bit of them forever. I made a pair of earrings with my beloved Clarins 230, so even if I finish the bottle, I'll still have those earrings! You can also get creative with layerings, or nail art, or just go crazy blingy and add sparkle to your outfits.

Polish Me Silly Thermal Nail Polishes (Formerly Lush Lacquer)

Polish Me Silly may seem like a new indie brand, but I'll bet you are actually already familiar with them! They were formerly known as Lush Lacquer, but had to change their name for legal reasons. They're bouncing back with a new collection of colorful thermal polishes, and I've got nine of them to share with you today. Let me know which ones speak to you in the comments!

NOTE: All swatches show the "cold" state of the polish on my pointer and ring fingers, and the "warm" state of the polish on my middle and pinky fingers.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

12 Days of Giveaways Day 01: The KBShimmer Blogger Collection (CLOSED)

When I was young, I always looked forward to Christmas because it meant PRESENTS! I mean, who doesn't love receiving gifts!? But as I grow older, I find that now I get more excited about giving gifts that I do about receiving them. There's something just so wonderful about finding the perfect present for someone, waiting for them to open it, and experiencing that moment with them. Maybe that's cheesy but it's true!

This year, I wanted to give some gifts to you, my beautiful readers. This blog is what it is today because of you guys, and I'm so thankful that you are around to keep me company in my nail art and nail polish addictions. In celebration of the season, I've teamed up with some of my favorite brands to put together a 12 Days of Giveaways for you (a la The Ellen Show - my fav). That's right - 12 days, 12 prizes, multiple winners, and lots of fun! 

Read on and enter to win!

The Lipstick League – Week of 11-25-13

Question of the Week: What beauty product were you most thankful for this week?
Sarah's Answer: I'm most thankful for Milani Eyeshadow Primer this week. It kept my eyeshadow looking flawless and crease-free, even through cooking, baking, napping, and more!

Phyrra - gives you her Quick Cat Eye Makeup Tutorial Video, plus two bonus ways to get the perfect cat eye.

we heart this - reviews the latest advancement in wrinkle banishing; Perricone MD Blue Plasma Orbital. It's a peel that you can use around your eyes. Did you just hear angels sing? Because we did!

Beauty Junkies Unite - checks out the latest limited edition Urban Decay nail colors. They're stunning inside and out!

Chalkboard Nails - celebrates her dog’s birthday by doing nail art to match his squeaky toy. Are you a crazy dog person, too?

EauMG - shares a holiday gift guide for the chic hipster on your list!

My Beauty Bunny - It's time to get shopping! If you're looking for some fab present ideas, we've rounded up our faves for our annual Cruelty Free Gift Guide.

Nouveau Cheap - The new (and permanent, not limited edition!) Wet n Wild Coloricon 5-Pan Eyeshadow Palettes are now landing in stores. Come take a peek at these beauties!

Pink Sith - shows you some uses for Aquaphor Healing Ointment and is offering a Giveaway of Aquaphor and a $50 Visa Gift Card to boot!

Prime Beauty - already caved on one of her wishlist items for Santa--The Marc Jacobs Showstopper 7-pc. Holiday Collection. Boy is she glad she did!

Guest Post of the Week, as chosen by Phyrra - It's no secret that I adore Musings of a Muse and she is one of my blog inspirations. You need to see her review of the all new Too Faced Chocolate Bar Eye Palette!
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