Saturday, March 28, 2015

Absolute Disaster on 27 March 2015 - DON'T BUY THIS NAIL GLUE!!!!!!

Yesterday I had an absolute disaster with 3 of my nails which I was trying to patch, using a different nail glue to the one I usually use, and here is how my nails and fingers look today!

As a result of this, I want to advise everyone NOT TO BUY THE NAIL GLUE shown below:

and here's the full story of what happened.

After taking off last week's manicure and the patches I had on three of my nails, I still couldn't cut my nails back because they were broken a long way down the actual nail, and not only on the tip section.  So, I set out to put patches on them again before I put on this week's mani.  I had run out of the glue I had been using, which came with the Manicare Nail Repair Kit I bought months ago, so I decided to use the nail glue shown above, which I had bought to use to attach artificial nail swabs to my nail polish bottle lids before I put them up on the shelves.  It said "Nail Glue", so I presumed it would be safe to use, and I had to make a tiny hole with a sharp needle in the top, so there should have only been a small drop of glue on the index nail on my left hand (the one with breaks on both sides of the nail) when I put it on.  However, that is not what happened.  It spread all over my nail, and onto two of my fingers, and then dried instantly.  My fingers were stuck together, but I managed to get them apart, and managed to finish that patch.

I then spent half an hour trying to get the glue off my fingers with acetone, and still didn't manage to get it all off, but I wanted to go ahead and patch the other two nails that needed repairing, so I decided to finish trying to get it off after I had finished the patches.  I had read during the week that micropore tape from the pharmacy is a good alternative to tea bags to use for patches, so I applied some over the splits on the middle finger on my left hand and the thumb on my right hand.  I filed off the excess bit of the fibreglass tape that I used with the nail glue patch, and smoothed off the surface of the glue.  

Next, I added two coats of Sally Hansen "Hard As Nails" original formula nail hardener to all my nails, waiting for each coat to dry before adding the next one.  I then added one coat of Jordana "Mellow Yellow" to all my nails except for my ring fingers, and one coat of Sinful Colors "White On White" to my ring finger nails.  I was planning to do a gold and green water marble manicure for the Cricket World Cup Final on Sunday, 29 March 2015, in which Australia are playing.  However, when the polish finally dried on the patched nails, I noticed that the polish was really rough on the ones I used the micropore tape on.  So, I decided to remove the micropore patches and do them the same way as the one with the glue, and that's when disaster struck.

The micropore tape nails were easy to clean and remove the tape, but when I tried to do the patch on the first nail, glue went all over my fingers again.  I then tried to add some acetone to a cotton swab to try to get it off, but the acetone went all over the nails on my right hand, and I just burst into tears.  Then I tried to use the acetone to remove the glue from my fingers once again, and most of it just wouldn't shift.  I used the foil method with 100% acetone on the two nails with the glue on, and after 15 minutes they still hadn't shifted, so I added more to them, left the remover on for 15 minutes, and the glue hadn't even budged.  I tried again, and again, and finally managed to get the patch piece off, but the glue underneath still wasn't going to budge.  

Meanwhile, all this time, my finger and nails was burning because of the acetone, so I switched to an acetone-based polish remover, and after about 2 hours I finally managed to remove most of the glue, but in the process the nail on my index finger broke right off, and the other break got worse.  That's when I really gave up, and decided to cut all the broken nails off as carefully as I could, and filed the rest of my nails back a lot so they didn't look ridiculous.  I was really crying my heart out at this stage, because I was watching 9 months of careful nurturing and beautiful manicures going out the window, and my nails looked worse than they did when I first started my blog after the chemotherapy damage.  One of the nails even started bleeding, and you can see how badly the tips of my fingers were damaged by the glue and the acetone.


So, now I won't be able to do anything but nourish, strengthen and pamper my nails and hands for weeks until they start to recover, and start from scratch again.  I am absolutely heart-broken, and feeling extremely discouraged.  I just wish I could find some glue like the one I got with the Manicare Nail Repair Kit to use with the tea bag patches, but I think the only way I'm going to be able to is to buy a whole new kit, even though I've still got half the fibreglass strips left, and the emery board will last for a long time yet.  

This was a horrible lesson to learn, but I will never put nail glue made for false nails near my nails again, especially the one I tried.  After more than three whole hours just to get the two patches off, plus the time taken to put the base coat and polish on, and then take it off, and still picking glue off my fingers, I guess all I can do is start treating my nails and hands with kid gloves, and use everything in my arsenal to repair the damage.  My first port of call was, of course, my Jojoba Oil, but I have other things I can use, so my next few posts will most likely be updates on how my nails are going and how the different products that I use perform. 

I hope you won't give up on me, and that you will come back again to see how things are going.  If I find anything interesting on my travels around the internet I'll let you know, and will also keep you informed about any new polishes I get while I'm waiting to start polishing my nails again.

Bye for now, and I hope to be back real soon.  Have a wonderful day, and may God bless you.



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

Words of Life and Hope

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

My First Water Marble Manicure - 24 March 2015

Yesterday I did my first water marble manicure, and I'm pretty pleased with the way it turned out. 

Picture on left was taken inside under artificial light, and the one on the right was taken in the shade.
Please forgive the rough skin around my finger tips and cuticles, but my nails have had a pretty tough time over the last few days.  My index finger and my middle finger on my left hand, and my thumb on my right hand, all have patches on them.  They broke half-way down my nails - they have all pulled away from the nail bed down the side of the nails because of the chemotherapy damage, and they are still very thin and fragile there.  I still don't know whether this damage will be permanent, or if they will grow back onto the nail bed as the new nail growth comes through.  Only time will tell!  I went out today and bought some Revitanail "Strengthener", "Keratin Strengthening Serum", Nourishing Oil" and "Hand & Nail Cream".  They are on special at Terry White's Pharmacies, 3 items for the price of 2, this week (in Australia), and I'm going to start using them all as often as possible.  I'm afraid I haven't been following my own advice lately because I've been so busy, and have also been feeling really depressed and not at all motivated, so I have to start practicing what I preach again and try to get things back on track.

Now, on to my water marble manicure.  I started with 2 coats of Sally Hansen "Hard As Nails" strengthener because all my nails are so fragile, and I'm hoping this will help to keep them from breaking.  I got 6 bottles of it REALLY cheap before Christmas on eBay, but forgot I had it.  When my nails broke (after I'd stopped crying - literally), I started thinking about what strengthening base coats I had that I could use, and I remembered I had this.  So, God willing, I won't have any more breaks for a while.

I then added two coats of OPI "Alpine Snow" white cream polish to all my nails. I don't really like this polish because I need three coats to get a smooth finish, but because I was actually planning to do a plastic wrap marble manicure (tutorial here and elsewhere online), I just left it at two coats.  However, I couldn't get this manicure style to work with the polishes I wanted to use, so I decided to try an actual water marble instead (tutorial here and in many other places online). 

I then smeared Vaseline around all my nails and part-way up my fingers to make cleaning up a lot easier, because water marbling is very messy.  I had to be careful not to get any of the Vaseline on the actual nails, because it would have stopped the nail polish from going onto the nails.

Next, I filled my bowl with tepid water straight from the tap, and added drops of OPI "Alpine Snow" (white), Face of Australia Pastels "Boys 'N' Berries" (blue), OPI "Mod About You" (pale pink) and OPI "Planks A Lot" (lilac) (in this order).  I did this three times for each design (twelve drops in all), and then used a toothpick to make my design, following the above tutorial as a guide.  All the polishes spread over the water really well, which was great. I used a small glass bowl because I wanted to do all my nails at the same time, instead of individually or in pairs, which is the usual way it is done, because I was so frustrated that the other design hadn't worked and wanted to get it over and done with.  My design was a random one, instead of any particular design, in which I just swirled the colours around and through each other until I was happy with the distribution of the colours.  Then I just dipped all five fingers of my left hand in the bowl at once, and repeated all this with the other hand.

I finished off my manicure with one coat of Revlon "Quick Dry Top Coat", which gave me a beautiful, glossy finish. I am rather pleased with the end result, and really love the way the colour combination worked out.  Of course, I still have a lot to learn about this technique, but with all the advice and tutorials available on YouTube, and numerous blogs and websites online, I should be able to have a lot of fun trying out new designs, and a multitude of colour combinations, in the future.  It really is quite easy to do, I found, and the mess was easy to clean up because I had used the Vaseline around my nails and fingers.  Next time I'm going to try using sticky tape around my nails and fingers, and see how that goes.

Thank you so much for visiting, and I hope you'll come back often to see what I have to share with you.  If you so wish, you can follow me by filling in one of the boxes at the top right-hand side of the page, and I'd love you to share it with your nail-art friends.  Now I'm off to put some cuticle oil on my cuticles and lots of hand-cream on my hands.  I couldn't believe how dry they were until I took the  photos.  My new phone has a really good camera, and it's picking up flaws in my manicures, and every little bit of damage to my nails, cuticles and hands, which don't show up when you just look at them day to day.  So, I've got lots of work to do to repair all the damage, as if I didn't have enough problems with my nails already.  Oh, well, that's my own fault, I guess, for letting things slide.

Have a wonderful day, and may God bless you!



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

Words of Life and Hope

Monday, March 16, 2015

St Patrick's Day Quilted Manicure 16 March 2015

Today I have my St Patrick's Day Quilted Manicure to show you.  I went with the typical green and gold, with glitter on top of the green on most nails, but quilted my ring finger nails using gold striping tape and gold decals, both of which I bought from AliExpress.


I started with 2 coats of Sally Hansen Nail Rehab, followed by two coats of Sinful Colors "HD Nails" on all nails, and two coats of ulta3 "pot of gold" over all but my ring finger nails.  I then placed gold striping tape and gold decals in a quilted pattern on my ring fingers.  I then finished off with two coats of Seche Vite over the decals on my ring fingers, and one coat of OPI Top Coat over the rest of my nails.

I had real problems with the mani because it wouldn't dry.  I waited at least half an hour between coats, and they seemed dry to touch, so I added the glitter to the nails.  I don't know if it was the ulta3 glitter polish that was the problem, or the Sinful Colors green polish.  I thought everything was dry, so went ahead and did my ring fingers, and then added the top coats.  They seemed to be dry enough to go to bed, but when I got up this morning, the mani on the nails on both hands had all scrunched up on several nails, and pulled away from the tips on most of the nails.  There was none of this damage when I went to bed.  Here's some photos of both hands to show you what I'm talking about.

So, I wasn't sure whether to show you my mani or not, but I thought I should, so that you could see what can happen if you go to bed without making sure your nail polish is dry first.  As it was, mine had about one and a half hours to dry after I had added the top coats, which should have been heaps of time.  I really wish I knew which product I used caused this, but I don't. 

Also, I realised after I'd added a few decals that the ones I used were too large, and I should have gone for a smaller size, and I should have only used one coat of glitter.  It really is a bit over the top.  Oh, well, better luck next time.

My manicure wasn't the only disaster this week either.  I now have three completely broken nails which I've had to file back (my middle nail and thumb nail on my right hand, and my thumb nail on my left hand), and one that has a patch on the whole nail because it has broken on both sides (my index finger on my left hand), both of which are below the level of the nail bed, where the edges have pulled away from the nail bed because of the chemotherapy damage I suffered last year.  I'm just praying that this nail will hold together until I can get it to a stage where I can file it back.  So, I apologise for the state and length of my nails this week, but hope it won't be too long before they grow back to a decent length, and that they finally will have grown out all the damaged areas from the chemo.

That's it from me today, and I hope you'll come back to see what I have for you next time, which will probably be only a day or two because of the condition of my manicure this week. I really don't think I can stand looking at it much longer, but I have a doctor's appointment tomorrow, and another one on Wednesday, so I'm not sure which day I'll decide to change it.  I want to leave it on at least until tomorrow (St Patrick's Day), so after I get home tomorrow I'll probably take it off and try something new.

Thank you so much for visiting, and have a wonderful week.



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

Words of Life and Hope

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Caring For Your Nails Before, During and After Chemotherapy

I have just realised that, despite the main aim of my blog being to help others who are going through chemotherapy, I haven't put my nail care advice guide, that I wrote just before I started my blog, on the site.  Silly me!!!!!  So, here it is, and I hope it can help keep someone going through chemotherapy from experiencing what I went through with my nails.  Firstly, I'd like to show you the damage done to my nails by the chemotherapy.

Caring For Your Nails Before, During and After Chemotherapy

Before I started chemotherapy for breast cancer, I was told by my oncologist, and the breast-care nurse, to paint my nails with dark nail polish to protect my nails from the sun's UV rays, and to hide any damage that might occur.  Despite using nail polish, my nails were still horribly damaged - they went a horrible brown colour, started to flake and peel, and even started to come away from the nail bed.  I went searching for information to help me repair my nails, and also ways to care for them once they were looking good again.  No one told me any of this information before I started chemotherapy, but if they had, I possibly may not have had any of the problems with my nails that I did.

So, I decided I wanted to try to help prevent all the beautiful women (and men) going through chemotherapy from going through the same experience I did.  Here are some things I WAS NOT TOLD that you really need to know BEFORE you start chemotherapy.

1.  Prevention is better than a cure, of course, so be prepared and start early. As soon as you know that you are going to have chemotherapy, start using the nail and hand routine below, and do it every day without fail.  Hopefully, this may stop you from getting the severe damage I did.  I can't promise it will prevent all the damage, but it should help a lot, and should definitely help to keep your nails from drying out.

2.  Buy yourself the best CUTICLE OIL/NOURISHING SERUM you can afford.  Revitanail and Sally Hansen make some really great ones that nourish, strengthen and protect your nails, but there are other brands out there too.  They are readily available from pharmacies, department stores, beauty shops, Priceline stores and, of course, online.
     I have recently discovered that PURE JOJOBA OIL is the best thing you can use on your hands and nails, so I am using that now, too.  It is available at health food shops, Priceline and Chemist Warehouse, but it is a lot less expensive online, and there are many companies that sell it.  Check out eBay, or just Google it and you will be amazed by the other uses it has, too.  It's also odourless.  AMAZING STUFF!!!  

    I would suggest you use both the cuticle oil and Jojoba Oil to give you even more protection from damage.  Massage one of them into you nails and cuticles every time you wash your hands if you can, but at least twice a day, morning and night.

3.  ALWAYS use a GOOD QUALITY BASE COAT on your nails before applying your nail polish, because today's nail polishes are made to adhere to the base coat, not your nails.  It will help stop your nails from being stained by the nail polishes you use, too.  You can also get strengthening and nourishing base coats - even more protection and nourishment for your nails.  Availability is the same as for the cuticle oils. 

4.  Apply as many coats of nail polish as you need to get the coverage on your nail you want, waiting for each coat to dry before applying the next coat.  Usually two coats are enough, but some polishes require three.  Apply thin coats, because the thicker the coat the longer it will take to dry.  They are available from the same places as mentioned above.

5.  If you want your nail polish to last more than just a few days, you should use a good quality TOP COAT to stop it from chipping and getting damaged.  There are some great top coats available, from the companies I have already mentioned, and of course from the same places.  Reapply your top coat every other day to make your polish last longer.

6.  Finish off by applying a good quality HAND AND NAIL CREAM.  Massage a generous amount into your hands and nails at least twice a day, but more often if you are washing your hands a lot, because washing dries out both your hands and nails.

7.  Always try to use gloves when you are washing the dishes, gardening or cleaning around the house, because they, too, will help to prevent your nails from getting damaged.

8.  Always use an ACETONE-FREE POLISH REMOVER, because acetone dries your nails out, and is very harsh on your cuticles.  There are some great conditioning ones for different skin types. They are available from the same places as the other nail care products.

9.  Every time you remove your nail polish, massage your cuticle oil/nourishing serum into your nails and cuticles several times, over a couple of hours, before applying your next nail polish.  This gives the oil/serum a better chance of getting right into your nails and cuticles, and will really make a difference to how strong and healthy they are.

10. Don't use a metal nail file or emery board on your nails, because they will only cause even more damage.  Buy a good quality Czech crystal/glass nail file , which is a lot finer and so much kinder to your nails.  Manicare sell a great one which I use.  Don't be tempted to buy a cheap Chinese one, because the quality is inferior and could cause damage.

11. There are ECO-FRIENDLY VERSIONS available for all the products mentioned above if you are concerned about the environment or have allergies.  These are usually advertised as being 3-free or 5-free, which means they don't contain the nasty chemicals most of the other polishes do.  Just Google for more information and where to purchase them.

12. Lastly, one of the most important reasons for putting nail polish on your nails is that it not only helps to protect your nails, but THEY WILL LOOK GREAT, too, and that will make you feel better about yourself, and that has to be a good thing.  When you see the range of nail polish and nail art products available, even scented ones, you will be amazed at how attractive you can make them, it will really lift your spirits, and may even help to take your mind off what you are going through, which is what happened with me.

If this information helps to keep just one person from getting the damage chemotherapy did to my nails I will be happy.  Seeing my nails the way they were was so depressing, and that was the last thing I needed, and the last thing YOU will need while you are going through your chemotherapy treatment, and afterwards, during your recovery period.  If you already have damage, it's never too late to start looking after them.  It really is worth the effort.

Here's a photo taken on 25th February 2015, less than five months after the last photo was taken, showing the improvement which following the above regime has made to my nails and cuticles.  There is still some damage, for example the lifting from the nail bed, but I'm hoping that will improve with time, God willing.  Most of this improvement has come since starting to use the pure Jojoba Oil mentioned earlier.  Please do give this amazing essential oil a try.  It's an absolute miracle worker, and makes your hands and nails feel great, too.

I would like to wish you all the best for your journey through your cancer treatment, and hope that you reach the other end with a good outcome.  Look good and you'll feel better!

© Christine Chipman 2014

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Huge Stash Received Today!

I don't have a manicure to show you this week because it was an absolute disaster, and I completely broke the tip of my thumb nail on my left hand down to the nail bed, which is the hand I usually photograph.  You can imagine the words that came out of my mouth when I did it, because I really hurt.  I had just had a shower, and this nail was being held together with a patch, so I think the water must have softened the patch, and it broke before the patch dried again.  Sometimes I wish we didn't have to have showers or baths, because the water can do so much damage to your manicure if you are not careful.

Anyway, because I don't have a mani for you, I thought I'd show you a photograph of the huge stash I received in the mail today.  The person I bought them from was destashing, and I was the lucky recipient.  There is an amazing range of brands and colours, and now I have to put them all on my stash list.  Looks like I might need my hubby's help to do that. As you can see, my "purr baby" Ebony is only too happy to help.

Now I just have to work out which ones to wear first, and because it is St Patrick's Day next week, it will be green and gold, I think.  I hope it doesn't turn out such a disaster as this week's has.  I've just broken the corner off my thumb nail on my right hand, too.  Ebony suddenly jumped off my lap and hit my nail with one of her paws as she went, so my nail looks quite odd at the moment, and will do until it grows out. This definitely hasn't been my week so far.  Hope things improve tomorrow and the rest of the week.

Thanks for visiting, and I hope you'll come back soon to see what I've been doing on my nail art journey.



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

Words of Life and Hope

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

My Manicure for 1 March 2015

Today I have a full "skittle" manicure to show you, which happened by accident, because I only intended to put the pink polish on 3 nails on each hand, but I was watching TV while I was doing my mani, and before I knew what I'd done, I had pink polish on all five fingers on my left hand.  So, I just went ahead and did my other hand, but then added other polishes to my thumbs, index and pinky nails, mainly because I didn't like the color or finish of the pink nail polish on my nails, but also because I wanted to feature the Moonstone polish "Sample 10" on my middle fingers.

Photo taken in shade.

Products used:  Revlon Quick Dry Base and Top Coats, OPI "Pink-ing Of You" , Sally Hansen Hard As Nails Xtreme Wear "Golden-I", Moonstone "Sample 10", Savvy "High Voltage", L.A. Colors Color Craze "Tinsel", and China Glaze "Bridezilla".

I started with one coat of base coat to every nail, then one coat of OPI "Pink-ing Of You" to every nail.  It was at this stage I had realised that I was supposed to be doing a "skittlette" manicure, with a feature nail and another nail with a different colour on it. (Big BOO BOO that!!!)  I then added another coat of "Pink-ing Of You" to my thumb, index and pinky nails.  However, I still did not have full coverage, so I added another coat, but still the coverage was patchy.  The polish is very thin, and not easy to work with.  It was very hard to stop it from looking patchy no matter how careful I was. That was when I decided to do a full "skittle" mani to cover up the patchiness by adding three different glitters/toppers to the pink nails, hence the "skittle" instead of the "skittlette" manicure.

Next, I added two coats of "Sally Hansen Hard As Nails Xtreme Wear "Golden-I" to my ring fingers.  This polish is sooooooo beautiful, and I almost got full cover with just one coat, but used two for this mani, and because it is over a coat of pink, the effect is gorgeous, with just a tinge of pink showing through.  The finish is beautifully smooth and shimmery, and it went on like a dream. I will definitely be using this polish a lot in the future when I want a golden nail, or for stencils and/or nail art, and will have to go out and find another bottle before they decide to take it off the market (I hope they haven't already), because the bottle is only 11.8ml, so it probably will not last very long.

Then I added two coats of Moonstone "Sample 10" to my middle fingers.  This is a colour that, unfortunately, is no longer available, and Caitlin (the owner and maker of Moonstone polish) told me she has lost the formula, so she can't make any more.  When I first received this polish in the mail, I was so blown away by it that I went straight back to the site and bought the last bottle Caitlin had, and have since bought several more.  It is a beautiful, very, very pale blue crelly, loaded with heaps of gold and holographic micro-glitter; gold, hot pink and pink tiny, round glitter; small white square glitter; and larger pink hexagonal glitter.  It was wonderful to work with, and looked gorgeous over the one coat of pink underneath, even with just one coat, but I wanted to get the full crelly effect, so I used two coats for this manicure.  It went on smoothly, and two coats was more than enough to achieve the effect I wanted.  It looks like milky jelly with layers and layers of different glitters (see the close-up below).

My next job was to try to cover up the patchy pink polish, so I went searching through my glitter polishes and toppers and found three that completely transformed the OPI "Pink-ing Of You" to something beautiful.

The first one, which I added to my thumb nails, was Savvy "High Voltage".  It is an amazing glitter polish, loaded with gold and holographic micro-glitter (and I mean LOADED), as well as heaps of small pink and gold hexagonal glitter.  It can be used on its own, with two coats giving good coverage, but I just wanted to add a little extra to cover up the flaws in the pink polish underneath, so only used the one coat.  It was lovely to work with, and no fishing around in the bottle was needed to find the glitter. It was like adding a light smear of gold leaf with flashes of pink and gold glitter, and the shimmer effect is just beautiful.

The second glitter/topper polish I used was L.A. Colors Color Craze "Tinsel", which I added to my pinky fingers.  It is a pink jelly polish, with lots of pink and holographic micro-glitter, and larger pink and holographic hexagonal glitters.  Just one coat smothered the pink with a slightly richer, pink jelly layer that sparkles like diamonds.  It's just gorgeous in real life.

The last glitter I used is a sheer, pale pink polish with lots of holographic shimmer from China Glaze.  It's called "Bridezilla", and is simply beautiful.  It can be used on its own by using two or three coats, but even then it is very sheer, so I prefer to use it as a pink shimmer topper, and the effect is stunning.  This would work over almost any light or dark colour, and I can't wait to try it over black one day (SIGH!).

Overall, what could have been a disaster, because of the bad performance of the OPI "Pink-ing Of You", turned out to be a lovely skittle manicure, IMVHO.  I'm really happy with the result, and here are some pictures for you.
Both photos taken inside.

First photo taken in shade, second taken in sun.

The first photo is a close-up of Moonstone "Sample 10", the second one of the whole mani in the sun.

As a follow-up to last week's mani, by the time I took my polish off yesterday, 6 days from when I put it on, there was hardly any wear anywhere except the tips, which had only worn because I am constantly typing on my computer.  It left no stains on my nails, and came off very easily.  I am just so thrilled with all the Superficially Colorful polishes I have tried so far, and I can't wait to try another one from the "Remants Of Winter Collection".
Thank you for visiting my blog, and I hope you'll come back often to see what I have to share with you.  I have no idea what I'll have to show you next, but I will try to make it as interesting as possible.

God bless you, and have a wonderful day.



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

Words of Life and Hope

P.S. All polishes mentioned in this blog were purchased by me, and I was not paid in any way for my reviews.