My top 10 of 2013: nail art

Hey everyone, this'll be my last post of the year so let me start by wishing you all a fantastic 2014!! I hope it'll be a year packed with great times with your loved ones, positive experiences, good health and amazing polishes of course!

Here's my top 10 of nail arts of the year, in random order.

I haven't done much of them, and I could use some more practice to get a perfect gradient on each nail, but I'm so loving the gradient stampings! Original post (with tutorial).

Sponged with Saran wrap, then stamped. Easy but I think it turned out great! Original post.

Another easy nail art, but with a lot of effect. All you need is something to make dots with, of course dotting tools are great but bobbing pins, toothpicks or even a pen will do too. Start with the big dots in all 3 colors, then fill in the gaps with medium dots in all 3 colors but leave space for the smallest to create a gradient effect, finish with small dots. Original post.

This took some more time, but I think it turned out nice as well :) Original post.

This was an easy pick for this list, I'm loving it, but so did you guys, and I've even seen a few manis inspired by it. That is such a huge compliment and always puts a big smile on my face, so thank you very much!! :) Original post.

My first gradient stamping just had to be on this list as well! :) Original post.

This is one of those things that I love the result of, but often find myself just going for the easy & fast stamping instead. Have to do these kind of things more often! Original post (with tutorial).

Loose glitters, a pointy thing to pick them up, and lots of patience! But with a great result :) Original post.

Loving the combo of the brushed metal effect polish with the stamp! Original post.

And lastly, the kind of stamping I never get tired of, simple and so my kind of thing! Original post.

Hope you enjoyed this post, is there any kind of nail art you'd like to see more of? :) Thanks for stopping by and have a great NYE all!

My top 10 of 2013: polishes

Morning all! Before I show my top 10, I first want to wish you all very happy holidays with your beloved ones! I hope you'll all have a wonderful time ♥

Now, my top 10. Even though I like posts like these, sorting them out isn't easy, so many polishes to choose from! Although that's not a bad thing of course ^^ And luckily I haven't bought thát many polishes this year, so that helped too :) So here they are, in random order!

Cadillacquer There's No Better Reason

Starting the list with Cadillacquer There's No Better Reason, gorgeous shimmer, fab application, subtle holo sparkle... That's a win in my book! It's a brand that has a lot of unique polishes and I had several of them in my folder with possible polishes for this list! You can see more swatches of it here.

China Glaze All Wrapped Up

Next up is a polish I only recently showed, China Glaze All Wrapped Up from their Happy HoliGlaze collection! Beautiful color, stunning glitter, but also beautiful with ánd without top coat, what's not to love? You can see the post here.

Born Pretty Holo Polish #12

Another one that I showed recently, but I'm sure you can't blame me for showing it again now, look at it! It's Born Pretty Holo Polish #12, I'm sure I don't need to explain why this is in my top 10 :) And here's the link to the post.

Kiko Burgundy

We've seen plenty textured polishes this year, but one of my absolute favorites is Kiko Burgundy, one of their Sugar Mat polishes. Love the color, love the sparkle! I only have 2 of their Sugar Mats, but I sure wish I had them all! Here's the post about it.

Shimmer Polish Marilyn

I've swatched a lot of Shimmer polishes last year, it's a brand with all kinds of stunning glitters, but the one that stood out for me straight away was Shimmer Polish Marilyn. Pics don't do it justice, it's one of those glitters that's simply amazing irl! You can see more swatches here.

Kiko Poppy Red

Yep, my other Sugar Mat polish is in this top 10 too, Kiko Poppy Red. I've been wearing this so much on my toes last Summer! The color is a bit in between the daylight and lamplight pics. It's one of those polishes that I need to get a backup of, I know I'll be wearing it a lot more! I showed it here.

China Glaze Rendezvous With You

China Glaze Rendezvous With You isn't just pretty, but it covers in 1 coat, it dries very fast, ánd it works for stamping! It was a tough choice though, because the Autumn Nights collection has several beauties that work for stamping as well, but when I was sorting through possible top 10 polishes, I straight away wanted to wear this one again :) You can see it in stamping-action here, and the swatches of a bunch of the Autumn Nights polishes here.

Catrice Squeeze Me

When Catrice added a bunch of new colors to their core line, Catrice Squeeze Me was one of the polishes that a lot of people loved straight away, myself included. What was nice about making a top 10, is that I checked all polishes from last year and saw plenty that I kinda forgot about but that deserve a place on my nails again real soon! This one is definitely one of those :) You can find the post here.

Aphrodite Lacquers True Love Forever Sally Hansen Purple Heart

Aphrodite Lacquers True Love Forever is a glittery layering polish that also has a beautiful shimmer in it (shown on Sally Hansen Purple Heart here, another great polish). I really like how this looks shiny, but I'm loving it mattified! I have to say though, it was a hard pick between this and Forgotten Promises, but this can be combined in all kinds of ways, and did I already mention I love it mattified? =) Here's the original post.

China Glaze When Stars Collide

Of course I didn't forget about the Hologlam collection! My favorite of the ones that I have is China Glaze When Stars Collide. Lovelovelove it, absolutely one of my favorite polishes of the year! You can see the post here.

Well, there you have it, my top 10. There are a lot more polishes that deserve a spot here though! For example polishes like W.I.C. by Herôme Örebro, China Glaze Strap On Your Moonboots and Trind Sunset Orange & Ice Blue. And I'd like to mention Incoco Jackpot as well, it's not polish that you apply with a brush so it's not in my top 10, but the strips are made with real polish, and boy do they look good!

Hope you enjoyed this post, next time I'll be showing my picks of nail art :) What's your favorite polish of the year? Thanks for looking & take care!

MoYou-London The Explorer collection update - Preview

Another preview that I didn't post yet is from MoYou-London, they added 9 new plates to their Explorer collection. These plates include new designs but also smaller versions of previous designs.

Time for some preview spam! With NYC, KOH & W.I.C. By Herôme

Howdy! I've received some press releases that I didn't post yet, so here they are all together. As always, most of the images are clickable for an enlargement.

Starting this preview with W.I.C. By Herôme Frosty Norway, available in January. (€5,99)

Then we have KOH Showtime!, also available in January. (€14,99)

NYC has a collection for the holidays called Future Shock. This collection also has a golden top coat (I think it's probably another fake gold leaf top coat), but unfortunately I don't have an image of that one. It's called Top of The Gold. These polishes are called A suitcase and a Donut, Red me the news & Money never sleeps. (€2,49 for the top coat and €2,99 for the polish)

NYC also brings out 3 shiny nail art stripers, they go by the name Show Time Nail Art. (€2,49)

What do you think? Frosty Norway sure looks interesting to me! Have a great weekend! ♥

Essence Metal Glam Gold Topper Steel-ing The Scene (swatched twice)

Hi all! This morning I almost walked past an Essence display without even checking for new stuff, the previous LE stood there for quite some time and I kinda forgot about the Metal Glam collection. Luckily this blingy golden bottle pulled my attention, because I was curious after this one and it was the last one already! They still had a bunch of the other polishes in the collection (you can check out the preview here), but somehow, I managed to resist checking them. Metallics often work well for stamping, and I knew that if I'd open the bottle and see a pigmented polish, I'd throw them all in my basket in the blink of an eye! I have several stamping polishes in similar shades, so I figured to be brave and continue shopping instead. (Shush it, inner hoarder, I ain't going back!)

Anyway, here's the Gold Topper called Steel-ing The Scene, a polish with golden plastic(?) flakes in a clear base. The polish has plenty flakes, so no fishing needed, but a little dabbing here and there was needed to get this result. I used 1 coat of it on the swatches below. I'm sure the real deal looks better, but for €1,99, I'm fine with it not being real gold. Especially since this isn't the kind of polish I'd wear often! If you do want a real gold leaf top coat, you can of course buy one, or make one yourself! There are several tutorials for that out there, for example this tutorial by the awesome Deborah from Love Varnish!

Revlon Mistletoe with Essence Metal Glam Gold Topper Steel-ing The Scene

Revlon Mistletoe with Essence Steel-ing The Scene.

Mistletoe looked a lot more sparkly under the lamplight (swatches of it here), normal light made the flakes stand out more. So I also tried it out on a red creme base, but as you can see on the tip of my indexfinger, it didn't work as well with this base and dragged the color a little! I didn't have that at all with Mistletoe, and the Catrice is an older polish (from when they still had golden caps!), so I think that might be what's caused that. Regardless, if you're looking for a festive polish for the upcoming holidays, I think this one will do the trick just fine! :)

Catrice Brocade Red with Essence Metal Glam Gold Topper Steel-ing The Scene

Catrice Brocade Red with Essence Steel-ing The Scene.

Catrice Brocade Red with Essence Metal Glam Gold Topper Steel-ing The Scene

Thanks for looking and take care!

Christmas glitters & polished ornaments

Heya :) Are you getting in the mood for the holidays already? I sure am, and here's a simple mani to go with that! A red base with red/green/gold glitters, instant holiday feeling!

Bellisimo Calgary Flame with ILNP Christmas In Bordeaux.

Christmas In Bordeaux is one of ILNP's fabulous holiday glitters, it's so much better irl though! You can see my review of it here, where I'm showing it on black/gold. Loving it most on red! :)

As you might've already seen on my FB or IG, just like many others, I also made my own polished ornaments! I think the pics below already show a bit how it's done, but I saw it all explained well at The Nail Network (and then rushed to the stores to buy clear balls!). Her creations turned out amazing, go check them out if you haven't yet! ♥
The ornament I'm holding here was made with China Glaze's Pure Joy, and as you can see below, the golden/holo Angel Wings looked great as well! You can see the swatches of both Pure Joy and Angel Wings here.

A little warning though, I wanted to go for the traditional holiday colors with glitters, but... unfortunately most of my balls failed :( I used a LOT of my beloved ILNP holiday glitters (which makes me extra bummered, I have very little left of some now, would've been worth it if it worked though!), but somehow those didn't work well at all! They're shown here at the top left -doesn't it look great there?- and at the bottom right pic, it's the 2 most right ones. The bottom right one is the polish I showed today as well :)

I also used another polish from that collection which isn't shown here, but somehow they only seemed to work on their own. As soon as I added a 2nd polish to give them a colored base, it looked great at first, but somehow the newly added polish then went extremely thin, runny and sheer, pulled some glitters along as well and I just couldn't get them to dry and hold color! Very frustrating, I thought I should maybe let them dry longer, so I tried again and then waited several days before adding another color, but the result was the same. I think it's because those specific polishes (or maybe even just that batch) seem to have a different base than other polishes. So if you're going for glitters as well, and if they smell a bit different than most polish, they might not work well either (I wish I could give more info on why this didn't work, but I'm afraid I have no clue, all I know is that those polishes smell different and I have more glitters that smell a bit different, won't try those anymore!). As you can see, the China Glaze ones turned out great though, and they're being all sparkly in my tree now! :) Next year I might just do this again, but then no layerings and maybe more holo/duochrome/shimmer, to make them really stand out. Now I know how it works and what might not work, I think I'd dare using some more expensive polish as well :)

Have you polished any balls, or maybe even decorated some? I can imagine rhinestones and glittery stripers work great on the outside as well, and I've seen some people also use all kinds of stuff on the inside, including glitters from a hobbystore!

Thanks for stopping by & take care ♥

Frosty flakes with BPS Super Matte

Morning all! For this mani I started with a sheer base, folowed by randomly smudging some Frosty on the tips. Then I stamped a full nail image with snowflakes, followed by applying a fine glitter top coat. After that I applied some subtle silver glitter to the center of the flakes, and finished the whole thing with top coat. It's a bit different than my usual stamped stuff, but I really like the Wintery feel it has :)

Bellisimo Parisian Princess, China Glaze Frosty, Konad White with Bundle Monster 323, Essence glitter top coat, Essence Nail Art Tip Painter Silver Sparkle.

I tried out Born Pretty Super Matte Suface Oil (yep, it's really named that) to mattify it, and that top coat sure does the trick! It applied easily, mattified fast, and the result is a smooth, matte finish. Here's shiny and matte side by side.

The matte top coat costs $3,39 for 15ml and you can find it here. Don't forget to use code ABJ61 for 10% off! :)

Thanks for looking and have a great weekend ♥

The product(s) in this post was/were send to me for review. For more information, please have a look at my Disclosure Policy.

Bellisimo The Collection Clutch Set

Hey everyone! The collection I'm showing today has 6 polishes ánd a top and base coat. I received the Bellisimo Collection Clutch Set which comes with a white and gold clutch.

Photo credit: Bellisimo

It's a big post, so more after the jump!

Get Your Number

I already showed this polish earlier this year, but I didn´t show you sunlight pics yet, so when I wore this a while ago and it was quite sunny, I had to make some pics :) I already showed it on Instagram back then as well, but these pics were still in the vault until now. I don't have many textured polishes, and I love almost all of them, but this has to be one of my favorites! The gorgeous blue color with holographic sparkles is just an awesome combo :)

OPI Get Your Number.

OPI Get Your Number.

OPI Get Your Number.

I'm not sure how many coats this was, but I do remember it showed some VNL, so I applied some extra on my tips. It dried fine irl but somehow that still shows on the pics!

OPI Get Your Number.

There are sooo many textures that I don't have yet, but I wouldn't mind seeing more textured polishes in the coming year either, there's just something about them! ♥

Thanks for stopping by & take care!

From the vault: Cristina

Morning all! I put up my Christmas tree yesterday and man I am so loving it! It's red, sparkly, filled with lots of different things so there's plenty to see, and did I already mention sparkly? :D When I was done I was covered in glitter and unfortunately had 2 badly chipped nails as well, booo. So right now I'm rocking the nubbins again, and even though my nails are never crazy long, so short feels quite weird! So today I'll be spoiling my hands and nails with creams and such, no polish or remover, while I'll be cheering on my nails "grow little ones, grow!" :P Felt like a good time to fish a mani from the vault, and there was 1 Shimmer polish left that I hadn't shown yet, so here it is!

Shimmer Polish Cristina

Shimmer Polish Cristina. I'm wearing 3 coats with top coat here. Main colors are green and fuchsia (my pics show it a bit on the blue side), but as usual, there's a lot more going on!

Shimmer Polish Cristina

And here are all the Shimmers that I showed on my blog, aren't they gorgeous? :) There's plenty Indie brands working with glitters, but for me, Shimmer is the queen of glitter!

You can buy Shimmer Polish on the website or on Etsy.

Thanks for looking & have a great weekend!

The product(s) in this post was/were send to me for review. For more information, please have a look at my Disclosure Policy.