Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Before and After Photos of My Nails, Manicure for 23 February 2015, and Polish Review*

Hello once again!  Today I have some photos of how my nails are coming along since I started my blog, my manicure for this week, and a review* of the polish I used.  Firstly, the photos of my bare nails BEFORE and NOW.
BEFORE (19 October 2014)

NOW (24 February 2015)

When I saw the two photos side by side I couldn't believe the difference.  Admittedly, some of my nails have pulled even further away from the nail bed, but otherwise they are a lot stronger, and in much better condition than they were when I first started my blog.  It just goes to show what a little TLC, and lots of time and effort, can do when you put your mind to it.  It's been a long time, and I still have a long way to go to see if my nails will really recover properly, or if I'm going to be left with nails lifted off the nail bed down the side, etc permanently.  At least they look OK with polish over them, and the colour is a lot better.  I apologise for the horrible looking hands, but that is a result of losing a lot of weight and old age (I'm 66), and excess skin does not disappear and shrink back - it just sits there and looks horrible and wrinkly.  I lost 15 kg after 2 foot operations 4 years ago, and this is the result. So don't let these weight loss people tell you that you can immediately look wonderful after you lose a lot of weight.  I have excess flab all over my body, arms and legs that is just sitting there looking ghastly.  I'd love to know how these people in the weight-loss promos look so wonderful - they must all have cosmetic surgery to remove all the excess skin.

Now, on to this week's manicure and the review.

The polish I am wearing this week is another Superficially Colorful polish called "Turbulence", which is from Jin's "Remnants of Winter" Collection.  Jin describes it on her site as "a dark violet-pink with a hint of color shift of blue, red and gold. Not a multi-chrome, just an undecided color that changes with the light. Inspired by the unquiet air, the faraway lightning storms and the clouds colliding and leaving."

Photos taken in shade (click for closer view)

I started with a coat of Revlon Quick Dry Base Coat, then two coats of "Turbulence" to all my fingers, and added a coat of Savvy "Purple Viking" to my middle fingers.  I then added a gold decal to my index fingers, bought from echofairyland on eBay, and finished with a single coat of Revlon Quick Dry Top Coat to all fingers except my index fingers, on which I used two coats as extra protection for the decal.

"Turbulence" is another amazing polish from Superficially Colorful.  It went on like a dream, and two thin coats were more than enough to give full coverage.  It dries with a semi-gloss finish, with some micro-glitter scattered throughout, so it has a slightly rough, textured finish.  Jin mentioned on her site that it really needs a top coat to get the best effect, and she is correct. Once the top coat was applied the finish was lovely and smooth.  The colour was beautiful without the top coat but, once I added it, the effect just bowled me over.  It is so hard to describe, because it changes with the light, and with each movement of your hand.  One minute it's purple, then it's burgundy, then it gets a dark blue shift, and then you'll see just a shimmer of pink/violet. You can just make out the little bit of glitter in it if you look carefully (it shows up really well in the sun).  What looks like stains on my fingers right next to the nails is just a reflection from the polish.  That's how strong the colour is.  The extra glitter from "Purple Viking" is very obvious in the sun and the close-up swatches below.  I really didn't need to add the coat of Savvy "Purple Viking" to my middle nails, but I usually do a skittlette manicure, so I added it anyway, and the colour matched "Turbulence" perfectly and gave it that little bit of extra pizzazz.

All in all, I think Jin has got another winner with this polish, and I suggest you head over to Superficially Colorful right now to check it out, and all of Jin's other polishes while you're there.  I haven't been disappointed with any of the ones I've tried so far, although I know I had my misgivings about "Don't Leave Me This Way" last week (mentioned in my review of the "Troubled Love" collection last week). However, the longer I had it on my nails, the more I grew to love it.  I had so many compliments from people who saw it, and it lasted 9 (yes NINE) whole days, with very minimal wear, so I am extremely impressed with the quality of the polish. 

Here are some more photos I took, and the colours are very close to what they look like in real life, but it is so subtle that it was hard to get all the different colours to show up. My hubby bought me my first smart phone the other day (Samsung Galaxy S4 i9505), and it arrived yesterday, so I was able to take the photos using it.  It has speech control for the camera (awesome), so it made it so easy to take the photos myself.  All I have to do is say "SHOOT", and it takes the photo.  Although, because it only seems to take the photo if it hears the "T" clearly, there is probably another word that would work if things are not going right LOL!  You can see the detail so clearly in the photos that I'm afraid it showed up some bits of polish and glitter I missed with my clean-up.  I'm going to have to be ultra-careful when I do them in future so that doesn't happen again :)  Now I just have to wait for my sim card to arrive and then learn how to use it properly.

Photos taken in sun (click for closer view)

Photos taken inside (click for closer view)

Thank you for visiting my blog, and I hope you enjoyed your visit.  I don't know what I'll do next, so you'll have to come back again to find out.  I've finally worked out how to add the gadget that allows people to follow my blog, so if you want to do so, don't forget to fill it out.  It's on the top right-hand corner of the page.

God bless you, and have a wonderful day!


(Please check out my other blog, too.)

Words of Life and Hope

*Polish reviewed and all other items mentioned were purchased by myself and I received no payment for my comments.
 dark violet-pink with a hint of color shift of blue, red and gold. Not a multi-chrome, just an undecided color that changes with the light. Inspired by the unquiet air, the faraway lightning storms and the clouds colliding and leaving. - See more at:
a dark violet-pink with a hint of color shift of blue, red and gold. Not a multi-chrome, just an undecided color that changes with the light. Inspired by the unquiet air, the faraway lightning storms and the clouds colliding and leaving. - See more at:
a dark violet-pink with a hint of color shift of blue, red and gold. Not a multi-chrome, just an undecided color that changes with the light. Inspired by the unquiet air, the faraway lightning storms and the clouds colliding and leaving. - See more at:

Saturday, February 14, 2015

"Troubled Love" Valentine's Day Collection from Superficially Colorful - Requested Review and Swatches

Today I have the honour of doing a review of the latest collection from Superficially Colorful, the "Troubled Love" Valentine's Day Collection. Adi (Jin) Tamir, the owner of Superficially Colorful, lives in Israel, and all the polishes on her site are hand-made by her. They are 5-FREE, as they do not contain Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP), Formaldehyde or Toluene, nor do they contain formaldehyde resin or camphor. They are cruelty free and their creation did not harm any living being.  Jin, is short for Jijit - the Hebrew word for a redhead girl.

 Jin explains the theme for this collection this way:
"Love has many faces and one of its saddest faces is a one-sided love. So Valentine’s Day is not always about chocolate and kisses. My Valentine’s Day collection is inspired by several songs from my personal playlist that are an ode to the troubled, one-sided love. It’s a rather varied collection: it has glitter, it has holo, there are jelly and crelly polishes, and there’s even a thermal." 

The first polish I'd like to tell you about is "Tainted Love", which was inspired by the song by that name, originally recorded by Gloria Jones in 1964, and later covered by the group Soft Cell in 1981.

Photo in sunlight (click on photo for larger view)

This polish is a beautiful grey duo-chrome that shifts between green and violet, depending on the light.  This polish is beautiful to work with - it went on smoothly, with only two thin coats required for full coverage.  It dried very quickly, too, which is an added bonus.There is a glimmer of pinkish violet under artificial light inside, but I was not able to catch the true beauty with my camera.  Overall, this is a gorgeous polish which I will be wearing time and time again.  I think it would also work really well for stencils and stamping.  I love it! Here are some photos taken outside in shade and sunlight, and the colour is pretty true to life.

First photo indoors, second photo under artificial light
(click on photo for larger view)

Both photos taken in sunlight
(click on photo for larger view)

Photo taken in shade
"Never There", the second polish I'd like to show you, was inspired by the song of the same name by the group Cake recorded in 1998.  It is a silver holographic polish with a touch of pink - Jin describes it this way - "It's not a pink polish.  It just has this pink... "smell" to it." 

Taken in sunlight (click on photo for larger view)

This wonderful polish went on like a dream, and even one coat gave good coverage, however I used two coats for my swatches.  As I was applying it I kept saying "Wow!" to myself, and my hubby agreed with me.  This polish is amazing, and I will definitely be buying some more before it disappears from the Superficially Colorful site. It is the first holographic polish I have used, so it was a real surprise to me to see the effect on my nails.  In the sun it is absolutely awesome.  Here are some more photos taken in sunlight and shade. You can see from these photos why I fell in love with this polish.

Both taken in shade (click on photo for larger view)

Both taken in sunlight (click on photo for larger view)

The next polish I'd like to show you is called "Foolish Heart", which Jin describes as "a thermal polish that changes color from dark crimson, blu-ish mulberry red when cold to a fire Sienna red when warm.  It is reckless and foolish, but it knows what it wants." The polish was inspired by the song "I Was A Fool", recorded by Tegan and Sara in 2013.
Taken in sunlight (click on photo for larger view)

I wasn't too sure about the colour of this polish on me at first, but by the time I had finished the swatches I was sold.  The first coat was a little streaky, but two good coats gave a lovely matte finish.  The thermal effect was visible from the first stroke of the brush, which actually made it a little hard to know whether the polish was covering the nail, because the base looked so pale compared to the tip.  After I added the Seche Vite top coat the effect was beautiful.  The actual polish itself is a matte finish, though, and many people may prefer this.  In either case, it is a very pretty polish.

First photo taken indoors, next one in shade (click on photo for larger view)

First photo in my sunroom, second in sunlight (click on photo for larger view)

The fourth polish in the Troubled Heart collection, "I Will Survive", is by far my favourite.  Jin describes this as "a dark berry jelly with holographic glitter in different sizes" . It was inspired by the song "I Will Survive", recorded by Gloria Gaynor in 1978.

I did not want to take this polish off to do the last swatch, and I wish I had done this one last so I didn't have to.  It is a beautiful jelly polish, rather thin, but two good coats gave a gorgeous jelly finish, and as this is my first jelly polish, all I can say is it was like putting sparkly, crushed raspberries on my nails.  There was plenty of glitter, and although it does settle in the bottle, it didn't take long to distribute it throughout the polish, and I had no trouble getting lots of glitter with each stroke of the brush.  The holographic glitter sandwiched in this beautiful jelly gives an amazingly beautiful look, and the different colours reflected through the polish are wonderful to look at.  It is a polish I would wear for any special occasion without question, and I'm definitely going to have to buy some more of this polish before it disappears.  I'M IN LOVE! is the only phrase I can use to describe this polish.  

First photo taken indoors, second one in shade (click on photo for larger view)

Both photos taken in sunlight (click on photo for larger view)

The final polish in this collection is "Don't Leave Me This Way".  Jin describes this polish as "a red/orange crelly (creme/jelly) with matte red glitter of different sizes and just a little bit of matte red hearts glitter. Hesitant and unfinished, stuck with a broken heart between the orange and red."  It was inspired by the song "Don't Leave Me This Way", recorded by the group The Communards in 1986.

Taken in shade (click on photo for larger view)

Of the five polishes in this collection, this is the one I like the least.  It is a thin crelly, and was very hard to work with. I had to really fish around in the bottle to get any of the larger glitter, especially the hearts, which were hard to find (but Jin said there were only a few, so that's understandable, I suppose).  I needed three coats to get full opaque coverage, and the finish is matte and very uneven.  To get a smooth finish I needed two generous coats of Seche Vite top coat.  The overall effect is orange/red, but the red glitter is not clearly visible at all.  There is smattering of holographic micro-glitter, which shows up quite well in the last photo, which was taken in the sun.  The colours in the photos are very close to what they look like on my nails. 

First photo taken indoors, second taken in my sunroom (click on photo for larger view)

First photo in shade, second in full sun (click on photo for larger view)

For all swatches I used two base coats, OPI Ridge Filler Base Coat and OPI Natural Nail Base Coat, with one coat of Seche Vite Top Coat over all, with the exception of  "Don't Leave Me This Way".

Overall, this collection is beautiful, and such a novel take on Valentine's Day.  All but the "Don't Leave Me This Way" polish went on really easily, and were beautiful to work with.  They all came off with minimal effort, and there was no staining at all, despite the fact that they all contained colours that are notorious for staining nails. The range of colours is stunning, and the range of finishes is terrific, with something for everyone. I have no hesitation in recommending the "Troubled Love" Valentine's Day Collection at all.  The collection was sent to me by the owner of "Superficially Colorful" for my honest review, and that is what I have tried to do.  I received no payment for my comments.  All five polishes are available individually for $9.00 US, or you can purchase the whole "Troubled Love Collection" for $42.00 US.  Links to the YouTube videos of the songs which inspired this collection are available on the individual polish pages on the Superficially Colorful site.

I bought another collection from Jin at the same time as she sent me these, which is the "Remnants of Winter" collection, and they all look amazing too.  I'll try to do some swatches of them when I can get time.

So, thank you, Jin, for trusting me to do these reviews for you, and I hope I have not let you down.  This was my first proper review for anyone, and I found it to be a real challenge.  I wanted to do full justice to the polishes, especially with the photographs, and I took hundreds of them to just get the few I've included here.  Although it was hard work, I really enjoyed it and would love to do more for Jin, or for anyone else who would trust me to do some for them in the future.

Thanks for checking out my blog.  God bless you, and have a great day!



(Please check out my other blog below, too.)

Words of Life and Hope

he song Never There by Cake (1998)
Never There is inspired by the song Never There by Cake (1998) - See more at:

Friday, February 6, 2015

Manicure for 4 February 2015 - Not Happy, Jan!

Firstly, I'd like to say sorry for not showing you my nail polish stashes that I received last week as promised, but I put them all away, and they all got muddled up with my other polishes before I remembered I was supposed to be photographing them for my blog.  OOOPS!!!

Now to this week's mani.  After looking at the photos my hubby took for me today, I have to say that I have a lot to learn about the art of cleaning up my manicures.  My cuticles and the side of my nails look dreadful, so I'm going to have to do some research and see if I can find any tutorials to show me how to do it properly.  However, despite the horrible cuticles, etc, I've decided to show you my first mani for Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month - featuring the color "teal".

Products used are:  OPI Natural Nail Base Coat; Revlon Top Speed Fast Dry Nail Enamel Spirit, the white polish on my index and ring fingers; Essie Beach Bum Blu, the teal blue shimmer on my pinky and thumb nails; and LYZ Cosmetics Fairybread Nail Polish Mermaid's Voice, the first Australian Indie nail polish I have used, on my middle finger. I also used Savvy Teal and a stencil from Smart Nails (see photo above) to do the OCA ribbon design on my ring fingers, and two different shape and size teal blue rhinestone decals, bought through AliExpress, on my index fingers. Then I finished it off with one coat of OPI Top Coat on all nails except the nails with the decals, where I used two coats..

Mermaid's Voice was one of the two polishes in the December Sweet Surprise Box I purchased from Fairybread Nail Polish.  They put out a Sweet Surprise Box every month which has two polishes in it, and all you see in the listing is the name of the polishes and two photos which give you a clue to what type and colour polishes you may receive.  It is such a lovely surprise to get when you open the packaging.  So, in case you decide you want to purchase the December box (it is still available on the site), or one of the other boxes on offer, I won't tell you what the other colour I received is.  But I can assure you it is beautiful.  My photo doesn't do Mermaid's Voice polish justice, though.  It is a soft teal base, with heaps of teal and pink small and medium hexagon glitter, and lashings of microglitter, and looks particularly beautiful in the sun or under artificial light.  I used 2 coats of Mermaid's Voice on my middle fingers, and got good coverage, but I'm still trying to work out whether I should have used it as a top coat or on its own. It looks beautiful in the sun, and in the shade, but I couldn't catch it properly in my photo.

I'm afraid to say that I do not like the Revlon Top Speed Spirit I used on my index and ring fingers.  It was hard to get good coverage and, even after three coats and a top coat, I still couldn't get a smooth finish. I certainly won't be using it as a base for any nail art again.  It may be good for stencils and dotting, etc. though, so I'm sure I'll find a use for it sometime.

The Essie Beach Bum Blu is a beautiful, bright teal blue shimmer, and it went on very well, but it took 3 coats to get full coverage, because it is a fairly thin polish.  Unfortunately, though, after I put the top coat over it, the polish on my right thumb bubbled, so it looks awful.  However, the other three nails I used it on are just fine. So it really has me puzzled.  Also, I have no idea what the white mark is on my thumb nail in the photo, as it's definitely not on my nail.  All I can think is that it must have been a trick of the light at the time.

The Savvy Nail PolishTeal  I used for the stencil came out a lot darker than it looked in the bottle, which was disappointing, because I thought it would be just a bit darker than the Essie.  However, the SMARTnails Stencils were amazing.  They stuck to my nails really well, without being TOO sticky, and I had no trouble with smudging when I removed them.  However, when I put my top coat over my middle nails, the ribbon smudged badly on my left hand (I obviously put too much pressure on it, because it was very, very dry, and shouldn't have smudged.  It smudged very slightly on my right hand when I virtually just waved the brush over it with the top coat, but nowhere near as badly, and that is why you are seeing my right hand instead of my left, which is actually my preferred hand to photograph because it is my non-dominant hand, and the nails are actually better to look at with regard to shape and length.

When attaching the rhinestone decals, I dabbed a little top coat where I wanted them to go, picked them up with a wax pencil and placed them on my index nails. I then put two coats of top coat over them to hold them in place.

Overall, I'm pleased with the actual colour and design of the manicure, but I just wished my nails looked neater, and that the photo showed the colours better.  I really am going to have to work on both of these aspects of my manicures, because it really upsets me when I see how bad they look compared to others on the web.

I hope you all have a wonderful week, and that you have enjoyed my reviews and my manicure.  I hope you will come back often to see what I have to show you, and check out the beautiful, exciting hand-made nail polishes at LYZ Cosmetics Fairybread Nail Polish, the fabulous nail art stencils at SMARTnails, and the wonderful array of nail art supplies available at AliExpress.  You will be very pleasantly surprised if you haven't discovered these sites yet.

God bless you!



(Please check out my other blog below, too.)

Words of Life and Hope