Friday, December 31, 2010

OPI Bring on the Bling

It's the last day of 2010.  Isn't that weird?  I feel like this year went really quickly yet really slowly at the same time.  Yesterday I was running some errands and decided that as a little treat to myself before work I would stop at Ulta.  GOOD.  DECISION.  I was desperate to find an OPI glitter from the Burlesque collection to wear for New Year's Eve and Day.  Of course there were none there (because all of the holiday polishes--China Glaze and OPI--are on really should go to Ulta). I dug around for a while and finally unearthed a single Burlesque glitter, Bring on the Bling.  So here it is.

Bring on the Bling and Dazzled by Gold

I did one coat of OPI Dazzled by Gold, which I wore for my Christmas manicure and on my birthday, and two coats of Bring on the Bling.  It certainly is blingy.  Bring on the Bling is composed of predominantly gold glitter, but also has different colors interspersed.  I see green, pink, blue, silver and orange.  

I don't normally wear glitter for two reasons.  One, because to me it looks tacky most of the time.  At least on me.  I know some people who pull of glitter wonderfully, but I think I look like a pre-schooler who got into the craft supplies when I wear glitter.  And two, the removal.  I hate removing glitter.  But since it's the New Year I decided that glitter would be okay for a day or two.

So, the year is over.  For me, 2010 was a year of transition.  And what do I mean by that?  Let me recap.
1.  I bounced from coffee shop to coffee shop at the beginning of the year.  In January I was working at this locally owned one and I haaaaaaaaated it.  At the beginning of February I got hired at Coffee Inc. and I've been happy with my workytimes ever since.
2.  I got into grad school.  I stopped working my little part-time barista job, for the most part, and went back to school.  That has been the hardest transition.  I'm still not acclimated.
3.  I ended a seven-year relationship and began a new one.  I'm happy to say that the person I'm with now is continually extremely supportive of me, listens when I have something to say, snuggles me when I'm sad, snuggles me when I'm happy, and tells me I'm beautiful every day.  
4.  I moved from Pleasantville to the east side of Cleveland.
5.  My mom got sick.  Then my mom got better (almost all the way).

So you see, things have been continually in flux for me.  I'd like for 2011 to be a year of stability and academic prosperity, but we'll see how that goes.  I have a type A personality, so I crave stability and control.  I like rules and boundaries and I don't like not knowing which direction things are going to go.  2010 was hard.  I wave goodbye to it with super blingified nails and a pretty, pretty smile.

Look, there's my mommy!  Doesn't she look happy and healthy?  It's because she is.  And there's my dad, who I am sitting on and hopefully not crushing.  I guess 2010 ended on a good note, huh?

Oh, one last thing.  The other day I was in a dressing room at H&M and I got a text from Michelle at ALU that my blog was mentioned on Seventeen Magazine's Style Blog.  I was pretty surprised to learn that that was the case, but I checked it out for myself and it's true.  So thanks Seventeen!  Weeeee.

Happy New Year, everyone.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

American Apparel L'Esprit and Giveaway Winner

Good morning, all.  I'm a bit early for not having to do anything today.  Drinking coffee.  So much coffee.  Anyway, I have another American Apparel polish to show you.  L'Esprit was part of AA's summer release, and it was actually the most requested polish from my August American Apparel Giveaway.  After seeing how many people wanted it I decided to buy a bottle for myself several months ago but I only just now got around to using it.

I am so immensely sorry for my cuticles being so dry.  I'm going to see what I can do about that over the next few days.  Anyway, L'Esprit is a very, very lovely and very soft periwinkle.  I'm actually not sure that periwinkle is the right word, but it's not quite blue and it's not quite purple.  This polish was released early in the summer along with Butter, Summer Peach and Malibu Green, all of which I own, only one of which I've worn.  For being a summer release, L'Esprit would have fit in really nicely with some of the 2010 spring releases like Up & Away.  This polish is really very pretty.  The formula was kind of par for the course for a pastel.  It was difficult to get even and very thick, but I was really careful and got away with two coats.  The more I look at this polish the more I really like it.  It's calming.  I can see why everyone wanted to get their hands on this one.

Okay, so now for the giveaway winner.  I assigned each person a number and then I plugged my stats into and let it choose.  And the winner is...


I've already e-mailed Jessica and she has already e-mailed me back, so her win is confirmed and I'll be sending her Raccoon, Make-Up and Trench Coat.  I'll make the minute and a half walk to American Apparel later today.  Thanks for entering, everyone.  I really enjoy seeing which polishes everyone likes and wants to own.  I think the most requested polish this time was Army Jacket, which I showed you here.  I'll be doing another AA Giveaway in the near future, so stay tuned.

One more thing.  Dovey asked me in the comments for the giveaway if I actually wear American Apparel clothes.  No, I don't.  And here's why.

Remember this picture?  This is me on Christmas Eve.  See how I'm shaped?  I have big boobs, a very tiny waist and comparatively wide hips.  In other words, I have a classic hourglass figure.  Which is fine.  I have accepted my figure and I try to do what I can with it without looking like a 1940s pin-up.  American Apparel, however, does not manufacture their clothing to fit people like me.  Their clothing just doesn't flatter my body type.  Plus it's super expensive.  I do enjoy their accessories, like their nail polish, and sometimes I see a dress I might want to try on, but I do usually hold back from buying stuff.  I shop almost exclusively at H&M and Target.  If I need skinny jeans I go to Old Navy.  Because I'm cheap.  Now you know all my clothing secrets.

Okay, that's all.  Congratulations to Jessica, and I hope you guys have a good Wednesday.  When I go buy the giveaway polishes I will of course be picking up a few for myself as well, so I'll have new swatches to show you sooooooon!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Laaaaaaast Reminder

I'm reminding everyone one last time to enter my American Apparel Giveaway if you haven't already.  It's very easy to enter.  Click here to take you to the post that will present the rules and give you the opportunity to win.  

I come to you in my hipster glasses and flannel to let you know that you too can be an American Apparel hipster and the proud owner of three brand new polishes of your choice.

Hahaha, I love these glasses.  Too bad I broke them in my vigorous studying :(  Best hipster costume ever.

Alright, enter my giveaway!  And have a good Tuesday.  I'll announce the winner either tomorrow or Thursday.  Remember, you have until midnight.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Funky Fingers Snakeskin

Happy Monday, everyone.  Happy it is, indeed, for I am neither in school nor working.  I am sitting on my couch watching Gilmore Girls and drinking coffee with peppermint mocha creamer.  Oooh, so good.  So.  Good.  First, let me remind you once again to please enter my American Apparel Giveaway.  Click here to do so.  If I pick you to win you will receive three AA polishes of your choice.  Any three polishes.  Isn't that exciting?  So yes, please enter.

Today I'm showing you Funky Fingers Snakeskin.  I'm sure this one is a dupe for some Color Club shade, but I don't know which.  I got this at Five Below quite a while ago.  Now, just a little caveat/excuse.  I'm at my apartment now and in my haste to leave my parents' house I forgot my little digicam.  Meaning today you get iPhone pictures.  I did my best, but iPhone pictures are just never as good.  I'm sorry D:  Also, I had to cut off my nails.  They were peeling a lot from working and much longer than they normally are.

These were all taken indoors, obviously.  The light outside is horrible and gray.  I have to say...I absolutely love this color.  It's a metallic pewter with gold shimmer.  It looks less metallic-y in the bottle than it does on the nail, but it's not brushstroke-y.  This was two coats, but I probably could have gotten away with one.  This polish is that awesome.

Here you can see that it looks really metallic when you can't see the gold shimmer.  I don't know why my skin looks so red.  I think because I'm freezing in here.  It's the weirdest thing...I don't control the heat in my apartment, so most of the time it's REALLY HOT.  My boyfriend and I have been sleeping with the window open, and there has even been a let's-create-a-cross-breeze conversation involving the bathroom window.  However sometimes the heat doesn't go on AT ALL, like right now.  I am freezing. So, at the end of my ramble my point is this:  I think my skin is red because I'm really, really cold.

So purdy!  I'm really into this color.  

Yesterday I had kind of a bad afternoon so what did I do?  I hauled a bit at MAC.  The Cham-Pale and Stylishly Yours collections made their debuts yesterday.  Honestly, I would like all of each of these.  The collections are in direct opposition to one another:  Cham-Pale is frosty, light, shimmery and sparkly.  Stylishly Yours is bright, creamy and loud.  I love them both.  But here's what I got.

Vintage Selection Paint Pot, kind of a medium taupe-y frosty color.

Chilled On Ice Paint Pot, a very light, iridescent gold that sometimes has a pink-ish look to it.

Virgin Isle Cream Colour Base, a bright coral.  This can be used on the cheeks or lips, but not eyes.  Although why one would want this color on one's eyes is absolutely beyond my comprehension.

If I had tons and tons of monies I would buy up both of these collections.  But I just had to pick and choose.  Virgin Isle is actually part of the permanent collection and is available at PRO stores.  Anyway, that's all.  What do you guys think of Snakeskin?  Is it on your to-buy list?  Is anyone else thinking of picking up anything from Cham-Pale or Stylishly Yours?  I'm tempted to go back to MAC soon...

Sunday, December 26, 2010

American Apparel Reminder!

Hello all.  I hope everyone had a pleasant Christmas or, if you don't celebrate Christmas, a pleasant Saturday.  This post is just to remind you all to please enter my American Apparel Giveaway by Tuesday, December 28th at midnight, EST.  It's really, really easy to enter.  You can either click here or the image on the righthand sidebar to read the rules and cast your hat into the ring.  

Here are a couple reminders of the awesome goodies you could win:

Army Jacket

California Trooper


Also, I wanted to post my Christmas Eve outfit because it's sort of ridiculous.  I wore my standard little black dress, as always.  I have about four little black dresses that I cycle through constantly and I'm always buying new ones.  I wore a red belt.  By the way, I originally took these pictures to show my friend Michele in the morning before I had brushed my hair -or- put on makeup, so...sorry.

Frontsies.  Me with crazy hair standing in my living room.

Backsies!  Look at my completely ridiculous bow!

I went to H&M last week and saw this bow belt on a mannequin.  I commented about how that would not be happening on my body.  Then I saw a red one and put it on.  And decided that it was sort of cute.  My boyfriend, who is actually more savvy about dressing me than I am about dressing me, turned the bow around so it was in the back and told me my butt looked like a present.  I wore this to Christmas Eve familytime.  That belt is $9.95 well-spent.

Alright, time to get dressed for workytimes.  Don't forget about the giveaway :D

Friday, December 24, 2010

Dazzled By Party Hearty

Yesterday at Coffee Inc. was BUH-NAH-NUHS.  The coffee shop is right across from this giant shopping center, Pleasantville Park, and people come from all over the Cleveland-y area to go spend their money there.  The last minute shoppers were out in hordes yesterday and they all wanted peppermint mochas and eggnog lattes.  I didn't have a minute to sit down or even pee, but I did make like $60 in tips which is pretty nice.  And unusual.  Anyway, after work all I wanted was Steffie time.  Last night Steffie time consisted of:  a.)  a very long, very hot bath  b.)  Chinese food  c.)  nail time  d.)  Gilmore Girls.  Here's how my holiday nails turned out.

Two coats OPI Dazzled By Gold, which I wore exactly a month ago on my birthday, and one coat of China Glaze Party Hearty from the holiday set.  Dude, I don't know how China Glaze is planning on topping the 2010 holiday collection next year, but someone had better be working on that now.  This collection was probably my favorite of the entire year.  Isn't that crazy?  I loved it.  Dazzled By Gold is one of my favorite ever polishes.  I actually named it my favorite polish of 2009 around this time last year.  I don't know why it's so awesome.  It's just so sparkly and warm-looking.  And it doesn't clash with my skintone.

Well, it's Christmas Eve.  I don't ascribe to any religion at all, but my parents are Lutheran and I was raised as such.  I've always liked Christmas.  It seems like everyone's just a little nicer to each other, at least for a couple days.  I won't be able to post tomorrow because of Christmastime festivities (family breakfast!  I love breakfast) so I hope that everyone has or has had a good holidaytime.  Be safe in your travels, be nice to Santa, and stay calm around insane family.  This often requires deep breaths, and, let's face it, sparkly nails.  

Happy holidays, everyone!  Oh, and because I know someone will ask, the lipstick is Maybelline Color Sensational in Red Revolution :)

If you want to arrange it
This world you can change it
If we could somehow make this Christmas Day last
By helping a neighbor
Or even a stranger
To know who needs help
You need only just ask


Thursday, December 23, 2010

American Apparel Army Jacket

Hi everyone!  I'm pleased to see the interest in my American Apparel Giveaway 2.0.  What's that?  You haven't heard about my giveaway?  Click here to for the chance to win your choice of three American Apparel polishes.  It's easy to enter.

I thought I'd whet your appetites a little bit with one of the new American Apparel polishes, Army Jacket.  It's the only new one I have (so far).  And you could win it if you waaaaanted to!

I am straight-up, 100% in love with this color.  OF COURSE.  It's MUTED OLIVE.  My FAVORITE. Ahem.  Anyway, this is Army Jacket.  It's kind of a combination of a muted olive and a sage green.  It's absolutely, phenomenally gorgeous.  I think it looks so chic.  I wore it yesterday with a little black dress, black tights, and black motorcycle boots and it complemented everything so nicely.  I've said it once and I'll say it again:  I think for some reason these ugly olive greens really work with my skintone.  

As with all American Apparel polishes, Army Jacket went on flawlessly with two easy coats.  I don't know what kind of voodoo AA works, but their creme formula is to die for.  Have I talked this one up enough?  I love, love, love it.

Upon first glance I thought this might be close to Rescue Beauty Lounge Diddy Mow.  Although I was dead wrong, the color is still in the same vein.

Diddy Mow, which I posted about here, is clearly a bit darker.  It also has kind of a hidden shimmer.  God, Diddy Mow is so pretty.  So is Army Jacket.  I just adore them both.

That's all for today.  If you haven't entered my AA Giveaway please do so.  Become a follower, tell a friend.  Hopefully I'll be able to post a festive manicure before Christmas...

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

American Apparel GIVEAWAY (Again)

Oh hello again everyone. I'm posting two days in a row! Feels good. Anyway, I don't have a new polish to show you today, but I do have news! And that news is that I'm doing a little GIVEAWAY. This GIVEAWAY is going to be identical to the Hipster Giveaway I had back in August.

Please read the rules before you enter. I would really appreciate that.

So again, here's the deal:
1. In order to win you must be following this blog. What does that mean? Well, there is a button on the righthand sidebar that says "Follow." Click that button. Okay, now you're following and you're eligible to win. Yay!
2. Comment on this post with the following information: (a) which THREE American Apparel polishes you would like to win (b) your e-mail address. That's it. I'd also appreciate it if you'd tell someone about this giveaway. You don't have to provide evidence that you've done so, I'd just like you to let your friends know :)
3. Enter by Tuesday, December 28th, 11:59pm EST. I will pick a winner randomly.

I believe that American Apparel now has thirty-six different shades of polish to choose from. They just released a bevy of new colors. You can pick ANY THREE AMERICAN APPAREL POLISHES to receive if you win. ANY THREE. Why? Because I live essentially on top of an American Apparel store so it is easy for me to pop in and buy you things. Plus it's more fun this way because you actually get to choose what you want!

I'm going to post a few swatches here to give you ideas. These are just a few of the American Apparel polishes that I own. You do not have to pick from these shades.



California Trooper


Factory Grey

Passport Blue



Palm Springs

Again, these pictures above are simply AA polishes that I have featured on the blog. You do not have to pick from the polishes I showed. Let's say you want three of the new polishes American Apparel just released like Cameo Blue, African Violet, and MacArthur Park. GREAT. Just let me know. ANY THREE polishes are up for grabs. Want a full list of what American Apparel has to offer, polish-wise? Click here to take you to the AA website. Want to see more swatches? Here are a few links: All Lacquered Up and My Lucid Bubble.

Now, why am I doing this? It's just a little celebration of the completion of my first semester of graduate school. I complained a lot to you all here, and many of you stuck with me and offered encouragement. This is my own little way of saying thanks. I've said it once and I'll say it again: you guys are fantastic, supportive, and always kind. I appreciate all of you.

Okay, that's all. I can't wait to see which polishes you guys all want. If I were picking three I think I'd go with Trench Coat, Cameo Blue and Army Jacket...but that's just me.

Happy choosing!

Monday, December 20, 2010

OPI Ali's Big Break

Sorry for the lengthy absence. A few days after school ended I started working back at Coffee Inc. I forgot that it wreaks havoc on my hands. When I wasn't in school I would do my nails every day, but I just can't keep up with that schedule right now. I wore Sally Hansen Concrete, which I showed you here, for over a week while I was working. It was chipped and gross by Wednesday. By last night I just couldn't take it anymore. I had to take it off and replace it with something.

I'm deeply sorry for the state of my cuticles. As I said, the harsh way I treat my hands at my job coupled with the winter weather makes them look...gross. And dry. So anyway, this is Ali's Big Break from OPI's Burlesque collection. This was an early birthday gift to me from my friend Suzy, who I actually know from Coffee Inc. Thanks Suzy! Ali's Big Break is a really nice mid-toned red jelly with gold flecks of glitter. This manicure was definitely a rush job. This was two coats, but it could have perhaps used three. I dunno, I think it looks nice.

I thought I'd also let you guys know about a product I'm kind of obsessed with lately. I saw a review of the Milani Lip Flash Full Coverage Shimmer Gloss Pencils (what a mouthful) on Vampy Varnish last week, and I had been noticing them at CVS for a while now. So I bought two to try out. I definitely recommend them. I got two of the most offensively colored ones, Hot Flash, a cool-toned metallic red, and Flash Light, a coral shimmer. I wore both of them to work, and I got A LOT of compliments from men on Flash Light. One crazy man complimented Hot Flash (the red) by creepily saying, "You have a pretty red mouth." Oh, the public. Oh, the coffee-drinking-white-chocolate-loving public. Anyway, here's a picture of me wearing the coral, Flash Light.

I like to think that I can carry off bright colors pretty well, and I love the way this looks on me. I love these pencils because they're really easy to apply and they feel like wearing a matte lipstick. They do fade, but they fade evenly so they don't look stupid when they're wearing off. I dunno, I'm just really into these. I definitely want a couple more. If you're into lip products, take my advice and get thee to CVS. They're about $7 and worth every penny.

That's all for now. I'm going to have to make a post all about my return to work, because it has been ridiculous. Oh, and for all the bitching and moaning I did about school, everything turned out pretty well. Thanks for reading if you have been!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010