imperfectlyperfect: A woman's eye with rainbow iris and eyeshadow (Cosmetics (eyes))
I don't know what to say about this first manicure. It's a manicure that I did and there's nothing wrong with it, and I like the colors, but it just didn't wow me or give me that feeling of accomplishment like I wanted. I think maybe because it's just too similar to a manicure I've done before.

Sparkle! )
imperfectlyperfect: Close-up of fingernails painted dark purple with white nail art. (Default)
When I took off Nucleus, I decided to give another of the Chameleon polishes, Fandango, a try. Fandango is a blue/teal/green polish that mainly leans green. Sadly, it has the exact same problems as Nucleus: very sheer (which requires 4 coats to get fully opaque), prone to bubble, and slow to dry.

Unfortunately, I spaced on getting pictures of Fandango by itself, but the bubbling annoyed me sufficiently that I decided to cover it up and hide it behind an extreme dotticure (dotted manicure).

21 Color Salute! )
imperfectlyperfect: Nails painted black with shiny black tips. (Nails (black manicure))
Victoriana (Butter) came in the same shipment as Dosh. I still think Butter is absurdly expensive, but they're really winning me around.

Like a queen. )



On this day, I knew I wanted to do another rainbow manicure like the one I did back in October, but I didn't want to duplicate the colors.

While musing what colors to use, I came up with the idea of doing the rainbow in neutral colors of black, white & gray.

I decided to go with a bold pink background: OPI Conquistadorable Color, from OPI's 2009 Espana collection.

Like something out of a science fiction movie. )



So this manicure did not photograph as well as I would like it to have...though, the photographs still look lovely, don't get me wrong. But the manicure was SO MUCH LOVELIER.

The flame. )



...and that takes us through December 6th.
imperfectlyperfect: Text: I like being weird. Weird's all I've got, that and my sweet style (Sweet Style)
Another mixed bag of manicures. Seriously, this feels like some kind of archaeological reconstruction. I know these pictures represent from Nov 28 to Dec 3, but as they're copies from Carbonite, the metadata that told me what day these pictures were taken on no longer exists. They're all marked whatever day I redownloaded them from Carbonite. But THEN, I remember I can use my Instagram account as a calendar to tell me what day I posted which manicure.

SO. ABSURD.

Anyway. Along with Charla and Zuza, I also got Zoya Jem, a gorgeous duochrome that shifts purple, burgundy, brown, with hints of gold.

Truly Outrageous (bonus points if you catch that reference) )



Next, we have another Lilacquer Fifth Element polish: Zorg Industries.

Jean-Baptiste Emmanuel Zorg. )


When Cult Nails came out with their Behind Closed Doors collection, Coveted was one of the polishes I was most looking forward to.

You might say I coveted it. Ha! )


I ended up wearing A England's Lady of Shallott because, just as I was about to do my nails, my husband asked me out to the movies and I didn't want to go out naked (yes, that's what we've come to *sighs*) but I didn't have time to do something fancy or that was going to take a long time to dry.

Milady. )


And then last, but not at all least, we reach my favorite manicure of this period. This one, I liked so much, I actually gave it a name:

Last Ember on a Cold Night. )
imperfectlyperfect: Close up of fingernails painted green, black & gold. (nails (Loki))
Believe it or not, the idea for this manicure was The Husband's idea.

I wasn't sure what I wanted to do for my final manicure. On the one hand, it was the last one, so you feel like you should do something big and fancy and showy...on the other hand, I feel like half the time that just sets up an enormous amount of pressure and subsequent guilt if you can't attain that level of showiness and brilliance and it's often as good or better to do something really simple really well.

I don't KNOW that I did something really simple really well, but I love the hell out of this very simple, super cute manicure.

I am done with my graceless heart/So tonight I'm going to cut it out and then restart... )

AND THAT'S THE MONTH, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN! \0/
imperfectlyperfect: Close-up of fingernails painted dark purple with white nail art. (Default)
I have to admit that, by the time the end of this month rolled around, my inspiration for pink was seriously starting to lag. Which is why I was super grateful when I saw this manicure on [livejournal.com profile] sparkymonster's Pinterest.

I was NOT AT ALL sure I had the freehanding skills or steadiness of hand to carry it off (and post manicure, still not sure, wokka, wokka...) but it seemed simple enough that I should at least give it a try.

I will rise from this chrysalis... )
imperfectlyperfect: Close-up of fingernails painted dark purple with white nail art. (Default)
I have a confession to make.

I was hoping that I would hate this manicure.

Let me explain. This is the manicure I was trying to do on the 27th and ended up giving up in frustration. But I decided to give it another try.

This was my inspiration, and as you'll see, I pretty much copied it exactly. The thing is, it wasn't any less frustrating the second time around. The polishes just did not want to dry. I kept stupidly bumping my wet nails into things: cotton balls, the very nail polish bottles I was using, my OWN skin and nails...meaning that nails kept having to be painted all over again, or badly fixed...it was a royal PITA.

So I was hoping that, though I pressed on through sheer bullheadedness, that when all was said and done, I would HATE this manicure, do I'd never be tempted to attempt this royal PITA manicure ever again.

But alas.

IT LOOKS AMAZEBALLS.

Just look! )
imperfectlyperfect: Close up of fingernails painted green, black & gold. (nails (Loki))
This manicure is a riff off one that I have since lost the link to. It's not the manicure I started out to do, but my first manicure was just bogged down in disaster (kept snagging my wet nails, polish taking forever to dry, etc) and I got impatient and gave up on it. So this was plan B.

I envision my cells... )

Though we're in an area affected by Sandy's landfall, so far we're doing okay. It's rainy and windy and there's flooding in areas nowhere near our apartment, but we're holding tight. Just pray The Husband and I don't kill each other, being trapped in one not-very-big apartment. He gets cranky when he's not allowed to go to work. :/
imperfectlyperfect: A dark-skinned laughing woman in lipstick (Cosmetics)
I had an inspiration picture for this one, but the manicure I made ended up looking almost NOTHING LIKE the inspiration picture, except that they both involve circles.

This is the picture I started with.

Now let's look at what I did:

We go in circles. )
imperfectlyperfect: A woman holding a credit card; text: she had made yet another wise shopping decision (Another Wise Shopping Decision)
I've been looking for ways to incorporate other colors in my manicures and yet keep them primarily pink. This is a riff on a manicure that I saw on Pinterest (here) the day before. It had all the things I look for in a manicure: great effect, but easy to execute.

Blue skies & rainbows. ) It's beautiful and perfect. What more could I ask for?
imperfectlyperfect: Close up of fingernails painted green, black & gold. (nails (Loki))
I'm still not entirely certain how I feel about this manicure. I like it, but I'm not IN LOVE with it. But I'd like to experiment with it again, possibly in different colors.

Read more... )

I think I'd like to try it with non-pink colors but try the gold tip and Gilty again. Maybe with a deep dark blue, see if I can get an antique mirror look? IDK. I think Essie Dive Bar, a new color, might look great for that purpose.
imperfectlyperfect: Close-up of fingernails painted dark purple with white nail art. (Default)
This is a manicure I've been wanting to do since I first came up with the idea of doing a month's worth of pink manicures. I wanted to do something like a traditional pink vertical stripe wallpaper.

This didn't turn out quite like I envisioned, but I am SUPER PLEASED with how it turned out, nonetheless.

Pink Manicure 23. )

Getting the pieces of striping tape on and placed properly on all ten nails was rather time-consuming and kind of a pain in the ass, but the end result felt really worth it. I had a hard time taking this one off.
imperfectlyperfect: A woman with braided hair seen from above (Hair (braids))
This manicure suffers simply from the fact that it came after a manicure that I REALLY REALLY loved. That is, I really like it, it's pretty, it looks pretty much how I wanted...but after that stunning pink & white cherry blossom dot manicure, it isn't nearly as impressive.

Pink Manicure 22. )

I am sure I would've been a lot more enamored of this manicure, like I said, if it hadn't come right after a manicure I was SO IN LOVE with.

I also switched top coats on this day, from the China Glaze Fast Forward to Poshe, which is another brand that seems to be pretty popular with the nail bloggers I follow.

A further note about the China Glaze Fast Forward: I noticed with Out the Door that, after a week of solid usage, the bottle still barely looked touched. That is, a week of use barely seemed to touch the amount of top coat in the bottle. In contrast, after a week of use, the Fast Forward bottle is half empty.

When I used Poshe yesterday (and today), I noticed further that one brief dip of the brush seems to give me WAY more top coat than I need for a single nail and I suspect that the Poshe bottle, like Out the Door is going to be pretty full when I'm done with its week. So Fast Forward tumbles another notch in my estimation.

Going back to Poshe, it seems to dry as quickly as Seche Vite and Out the Door (more quickly than Fast Forward), cures pretty quickly and gives reasonable shine (though not the glassy shine of Seche Vite). I haven't had any shrinkage problems with Out The Door, Fast Forward or Poshe, so far.

When this top coat experiment is over, I may try using one of the non-shrinking top coats to seal the nail polish and then try putting on a thin coat of Seche Vite to up the shine. *muses*
imperfectlyperfect: Close-up of fingernails painted dark purple with white nail art. (nails (Hawkeye))
Continuing my thought from last night... I've been kvetching about being restricted to one color all month (by my choice!), but it is true that having a limited palette and limited shades within that color has forced me to be more creative, in terms of coming up with this many manicures that are all the same color but still distinct from each other. I don't know if I'll ever do a project like this again, but it's been a wonderful stretch.

Pink Manicure 15. )

Pink Manicure 16. )

Pink Manicure 16.5. )

Pink Manicure 17. )

Pink Manicure 18. )

Pink Manicure 18.5. )

Pink Manicure 19. )

Pink Manicure 20. )

Pink Manicure 21. )

Lately, I'm also posting my pics to Twitter and Instagram. I'm poisontaster at both places, if you'd rather follow me either of those places.
imperfectlyperfect: Text: I like being weird. Weird's all I've got, that and my sweet style (Sweet Style)
It becomes something of a Catch-22. Each manicure is between 2-5 pictures...but if I miss a day of posting, that starts to add up. And I get lazy.

Right now, I have a backlog of around 40 pictures. I'm not going to subject you to all of them in one post, but I gotta get started, because the backlog ain't getting no smaller!

Pink Manicure 10. )

I was so tired I don't even remember what color I used for the dark pink. But I smudged Pure Ice's Cheatin' glitter across the tip and graded it up the nail. Cheatin' is beautiful in the bottle, intense purple and blue microglitter in a clear base, but it was difficult to work with and I feel like it just looked dirty on the nail. The shine didn't really transfer. I'll try it with something else, see if I like it better, but this manicure just didn't do it for me. It was what it was: a place filler.

Pink Manicure 11. )

Pink Manicure 11.5. )

Pink Manicure 12. )

Pink Manicure 12.5. )

Pink Manicure 13. )

Pink Manicure 14. )

I know that I went for the short version of all these manicuresand I keep using the same colors over and over, so I do't know how much to say about each of them.

Somewhere in here, I switched from using Out The Door top coat to the next one I'm trying out, China Glaze's Fast Forward. I'm not especially fond of this one. Firstly, it has a strong odor that I don't like, rather like artifical grape & wet stone combined. Secondly, I don't feel like it dries or cures as fast as Seche Vite or Out The Door. I've had so many more nail flubs in the past week than I'm used to because my nails weren't as dry as I thought they'd be. I don't think it adds much shine, either. Which is not a deal breaker, but is certainly not a benefit. Thickness wise, it's not as thick as Seche Vite, but comparably thick to Out the Door.

And a final note about dots/dotting: on the one hand, I tend to be impatient, so I'm sure I'm putting on my top coat before the dots are fully dry. On the other hand, it would seem that some top coats just have a tendency to smear when you use them, regardless of how long you wait. *shrugs*

I'll try to get up manicures 15-21 tomorrow. Man, I am going to be SO OVER pink when this is all done. But it's been fun and interesting at the same time.
imperfectlyperfect: Close up of fingernails painted green, black & gold. (nails (Loki))
I really like doing my nails in two different colors. I don't know what it is, exactly. This manicure started as another attempt to do that Phases of the Moon manicure that I did in beige & black, but in shades of pink, instead. I didn't like how it turned out this time, either, so I decided to just alternate colors and do a half & half on my middle finger:

Uneven Phases )

conversely, I ADORED this next manicure.

I'd been messing around with incorporating black into the palette, while still keeping the pink front and center. I'd been thinking of it in terms of people we've lost to breast cancer, but in a moment of inspiration, I thought it could also refer, just as easily, to the darkness that surrounds you when you go through a cancer experience, even as a bystander. So I decided to do another riff on the Cloudy Day manicure I did on my Chicago trip. And it came out great!

Long, Dark Teatime of the Soul. )

Looking for inspiration, I'd googled "pink manicures" just to see what came up and I found this ombre manicure. The blogger had used stamping, but it would be just as easy to do actual dotting.

A Little Dotty. )

I decided to give each of the top coats I bought a week-long try out. I used INM Out the Door for this manicure. It's got approximately the same wet-to-surface dry time as Seche Vite, but it's a much thinner polish, meaning it doesn't feel as seamlessly smooth to the touch (I can still feel the bumps of the dots through it) and it doesn't dry as glassy-shiny. Still, I've been wearing this manicure since this morning, and there's no noticeable shrinkage at all. I definitely want to try it with a vegetarian polish like Zoya before I pronounce it my new favorite, but it's definitely impressed me so far.
imperfectlyperfect: A woman in a purple a-line dress (Clothes (purple dress))
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Though I don't honestly expect that I'm going to raise anyone's awareness, I decided I wanted to try and do a month's worth of pink manicures. I don't know if I'll succeed, but just the action of doing it has given me a sense of comfort and solidarity.

Six Days of Pink. )

I feel like this project is being good for me in a few different ways. I do have a feeling of connectedness, of being part of something larger that I don't think I've ever had, in relation to cancer. I spent a lot of my cancer time defining and having illuminated all the ways I was RADICALLY DIFFERENT from everyone else, both in how I dealt with my cancer and in how the various medications and side effects affected me. So this is a new thing and it's a...IDK. A reminder that this is something that has affected me, at a very personal level. And then, at the other end, it's something very life-affirming and creative, to bring beauty out of something that has otherwise affected me so negatively. It's a mental exercise to work with a single color (albeit in many shades) and come up with something different each time. Like I said above, I don't know if I can realistically come up with 31 different pink manicures. But I will enjoy the hell out of trying.

"I was very against pink and purple when I was young, because they were girls' colors. But that was only because I didn't want people to write me off for what I can do. When I got into my 20s, I decided that was stupid. " ~Danica Patrick
imperfectlyperfect: Close-up of fingernails painted dark purple with white nail art. (nails (Hawkeye))
This first manicure is from a collection that I've been meaning to--and have failed--to show you. They're from an Australian indie company called Pretty Serious. I heard about them through one of the nail blogs I follow and, though I was kind of nervous about buying an entire collection from a company I'd never dealt with before, but it's been absolutely worth it. The formulas are great, the colors have incredible intensity and depth and they've just been a pleasure to work with.

This is the manicure I wore for the flight out:

Gradient: Nightopia & Into Dreams. )

Day 2 of the trip, I was just kind of tired and I hadn't brought anything that would go super well with the red dress I'd be wearing, so I went simple: Daul, by Zoya.

Daul )

Day 3 I had more energy and the time to be a little creative. Inspired by the cloudy day outside the window, I decided to give a cloud manicure another try. This one was much more successful than my first try.

Cloud Manicure: Trophy Wife, Pelican Gray & Caitlin. )

Saturday was my grandma's birthday party, so it was important for me to look my best. I wanted to try a fishtail braid manicure, but the colors I'd brought and my own unfamiliarity with the technique means my sample nail didn't turn out so well. But, what I did like is the way it looked when I did a simple criss-cross over the nails. So that's what I did:

Party nails: Reclaim, Wallis & Trustafarian )

And that was my trip. I will try to get those swatch posts up, and my post-trip pink manicures.
imperfectlyperfect: Close up of fingernails painted green, black & gold. (nails (Loki))
So, I'm going to be going away for a few days. The family is throwing a shindig for my grandma's 85th birthday party and I need to be there, because my grandma is my hero and my inspiration. So.

I'm a little facepalmy about how I'm thinking about what nail polish I want to take with me, but I don't know what I'm taking or doing or how that's all going to work out. It'll probably be boring nails and super busy for four days. (not that I think you're hanging around waiting on my every word or anything. heh)

Breakfast Combo No. 1 & Color Blocking for Fun but No Profit. )
imperfectlyperfect: A woman holding a credit card; text: she had made yet another wise shopping decision (Another Wise Shopping Decision)
Today I asked my husband to give me a color. He said, "Brown." I don't actually have a lot of brown polishes, so I chose the first untried on my list, Street Chic, by China Glaze:

Your Potions Master's Nails. )

After a lot of dissatisfying experiments with polish this week, this felt like an unqualified success. \0/

(Crowstoes can be purchased through the indie marketplace Llarowe; the polish maker has a blog, too, The Polished Crow.)

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imperfectlyperfect: Close-up of fingernails painted dark purple with white nail art. (Default)
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