Saturday, July 31, 2010

Essence Pointbreak

Good morning, everyone.  Happy Saturday!  I'm still in my pajamas nursing a gigantic cup of coffee, but in a few minutes I'm going to get dressed and go drug store hopping.  One of my favorite activities.  Yesterday morning I decided to stop at Ulta on my way home from a friend's place.  I wasn't expecting to find anything that I wanted, but I ran across an Essence display called Surfer Babe.  It included eyeliners, lipglosses, a blush, a little eyeshadow palette (which I now kind of want) and, of course, nail polish.  I picked up three of the four polishes included in the display. 





Here's Pointbreak.  When I saw it in the store it was sitting in-between two cool-toned colors, a blue and a purple (both of which I bought), so it looked like this gray had strong cool undertones.  On my skin, though, it just looks like a straight-up gray creme.  That's fine, though.  I actually like it.  The application was good; I like the Essence brush.  The formula was decent; this was only two coats.  I haven't got any complaints about this little guy.  


These Surfer Babe polishes are about twice as big as the polishes part of the normal Essence line.  I suppose that, because of this, they cost twice as much (ie $1.99).  Still a steal, though.

Last night one of my customers was getting ready to leave and he reached over the espresso machine to fist-bump with me.  As he did that he pushed my arm riiiiiiight into the steam wand while it was on.  I could hear my skin sizzle.  Guh, that's the worst.  Got my weekend off to a great start, huh?

Okay, I'm on my way to the drug store.  My friend texted me pictures of new Sally Hansen Xtreme Wears and I just have to see them for myself.  I hope everyone has a great weekend!  What do you all think of Essence Pointbreak?  What's your favorite gray creme?  For $2 this is a good one!

Friday, July 30, 2010

H&M Fashionista

I can't believe how quickly my weeks are flying by lately.  I feel like no time passes at all between when the week begins and ends.  It's very strange.  Anywho, I've got an H&M polish from my Nathalie Package to show you today!  It's the first H&M polish I've ever used and it's awesome.









I'm sorry that my dying bottle of Seche Vite ruined EVERYTHING.  It bubbled on my index and middle fingers, as you can see.  Ugh.  I have to shell out for new Seche because I really don't like Out the Door.  That's enough complaining for now, though.  Now, having H&M nail polish is a momentous occasion for me.  Y'know why?  Because I live my life in H&M clothing.  H&M underwear?  Check.  H&M bras?  Check.  H&M tops?  Check.  H&M dresses?  Check.  H&M pants?  Check.  H&M socks?  Check.  H&M jewelry?  DOUBLE CHECK.  So you see, it only makes sense that I bathe my nails in the brilliance that is H&M as well.  The only store that I like half as much as I love H&M is Target, and you guys KNOW how I feel about Target.  

Anyway, this polish is called Fashionista and holy shitballs is it gorgeous.  It's a very, very bright royal purple, neither too blue nor too red.  It's shimmery and just the tiniest bit frosty (hence the brushstrokes).  It absolutely glows.  The shimmer in Fashionista is silver and pink and lovely.  See?


The formula on Fashionista was very good.  This was two coats.  I love the little square bottles that H&M polishes come in.  The only issue that I have with this polish is that the brush was just a bit moppy.  Not unwieldy, just a bit splayed.  Application was still relatively easy, though.  I love this polish.  A lot.


To end, Alley says hello.  She would also like to know what you all think of H&M Fashionista.  She's a fan.  Then again, she does like anything sparkly.  'Cause she's a fancy lady.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

L.A. Colors Magnetic Force

The other day when my friend Amber and I drove up to Michigan we hit a few other stores in addition to IKEA.  One of those stores was a Dollar Tree.  I just can't help myself when I see new Dollar Trees.  I have to check them out for old, awesome polish.  This one didn't really have any old Maybellines like I always hope to see, but it did have a lot of L.A. Colors Color Craze polishes.  As soon as I saw Magnetic Force I knew that I had to have it.




I absolutely love this color.  It didn't photograph completely true to life; it looks a bit more orange here than it actually does off-camera.  It's definitely a coral color.  Magnetic Force dried to a satin finish, so I'm guessing it has some neon pigment in it.  It's a crazy bright polish.  Also, it has this really beautiful gold shimmer in it that lights up in the sun.  Don't you love it when you find a polish that you really love and then you remember that you only paid a dollar for it?  This was my first experience with L.A. Colors and the formula was really nice.  This was only two coats.  I thought the brush was just a little bit short, but it wasn't unwieldy or anything.  All in all, good value for my poor sad monies.  

I hope everyone's havin' a great day.  I'm loving the sunshine, myself :)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The IKEA Website Is Like Porn To Me

I had the funnest of days yesterday going to the IKEA in Canton, Michigan with my Cleveland bestie-best, Amber.  Both of us have been needing some retail therapy so we decided to haul our asses over to the nearest IKEA.  It took about two hours and fifteen minutes to get there, but it really didn't feel like it.  We had fun car-dancing and singing Lady GaGa on the way.


Since we don't have an IKEA in Cleveland (AND WE SHOULD) we both got ridiculously excited just being there.  We took all kinds of pictures.  Because we are awesome.  Here's me in front of the store.


And now Amber in front of the store.  Sadly we don't have a decent picture of the both of us because, well, there were only two of us.  And I'd feel weird handing my phone to a random stranger and asking them to take a photo of us in front of IKEA.  

While we didn't go on this trip to specifically seek anything out, I knew that I needed another Helmer.  This situation terrifies me:  I have enough polish to almost completely fill one Helmer and I actually needed another in order to properly separate my brands.  Like, I can't keep Rescue Beauty Lounge in the same drawer as Wet n Wild.  Those two brands definitely don't play on the same playground.  Then again, I'm kind of obsessive compulsive when it comes to this kind of thing.



Here I am picking out my Helmer.  Does everyone remember my first Helmer?  It was a creme color; this time I decided to go for a nice, bright, shiny red.  That is the color of many awesome polishes after all.  Yes, I am very excited about this purchase.  Effortless (well, almost--I still have to put it together) convenience for $39.99.  Worth it.


After IKEA we went to Hobby Lobby, which was very nearby.  Then we went to this really tiny Japanese place for dinner.  Oh.  Man.  It was delicious.  And I ate way too much.  Actually, I ate way too much the entire day.



My ridiculously delicious ramen.  I'm actually getting kind of hungry just looking at this picture.  I think that means I have a problem.  Oohhhh, but a delicious, delicious problem...


Here Amber is demonstrating the proper use of chopsticks.  Obviously.



Don't let that sheepish look fool you.  I'm about to devour that.  I ate almost all of it; I left a bunch of the noodles because I'm still trying to stay away from carbs.  Trying and kind of failing.  Sigh.  I need to really start sticking to this diet thing.  I was doing so well for an entire year...oh well.  


Lastly, let me show you the ridiculous (read:  awesome) sunglasses that I got from the dollar store.  



NEON ORANGE WAYFARER KNOCKOFFS.  Yes, count me in.  And at $1, these were a totally guilt-free indulgence. 

I think that's all for today.  I will have another polish for you tomorrow.  Right now I'm still wearing Barry M Baby Blue, and it has held up for the past couple days quite well.  It chipped a bit on my right hand, but not too badly.  I give this polish high praise.  

I hope you all have a great Wednesday!  :)  I love IKEA Swedish shenanigans.  And also Swedish meatballs.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Barry M Baby Blue

Good morning everyone!  Monday again.  I've got to work later, which is a bit unusual for Monday; I picked up someone's shift.  Oh well.  I raced home after work last night and got to the couch just in time to kick off my shoes and watch Mad Men.  It...was awesome.  If you're not watching it, you should be.  I painted my nails while I was watching the encore presentation (yes that's right; I watched the same show twice.  So awesome!).




This is Barry M Baby Blue and it's the first polish that I chose to wear from my Nathalie Package.  I don't know why I wanted to wear this one so badly, but as soon as I took it out of the box it spoke to me.  It said, "Put me on your hands, Steff.  You'll loooooove me."  I do love it.  Baby Blue reminds me of a more opaque version of Rescue Beauty Lounge Bikini Bottom, one of my favorite polishes.  The formula on this wasn't great, but I wasn't expecting it to be because, from what I understand, Barry M is a quite inexpensive brand; that coupled with the fact that it's a pastel seems to equal not so great formula. This level of opacity took four coats to achieve and it's still not perfect.  It's a bit streaky.  I absolutely love the color, though.  It's so pretty and stark against my skin.  

A couple other things.  First, I am sorely disappointed with Out the Door topcoat.  It takes way longer to dry than Seche Vite and even after like an hour it wrinkles and dents.  That's not fast drying.  The bottle literally says, "Dries in seconds!"  No.  No it doesn't.  I need to go buy a bottle of Seche, man.  Also, I thought I'd share with you that I've been watching this show called The Whitest Kids U' Know and it's absolutely hilarious.  Season 4 is on Netflix instant watch.

They're a New York City-based sketch comedy troupe who have a show on the Independent Film Channel (IFC) which, in my little indie head, gives them instant cred.  If you don't know them, check it out.  Their show is offensively hilarious and I've been giggling about it for days.

K, that's all for today.  Happy Monday, everyone!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Chanel Coromandel

I'm having a great weekend so far and I hope you guys are too!  The only problem is that it has been raining and gross for the past couple days in Pleasantville  Not a big deal for fun times, but it kind of sucks for polish-y times.  Ah well.  If you've been reading my blog for a while you know that Mad Men is my favey-fave show of all time; tonight is the premiere of season four on AMC.  Whenever I think Mad Men I always think red polish so that's why I chose to wear Chanel Coromandel today.




The formula on this polish is absolutely impeccable.  It was a one-coater, but what you see in these pictures is two coats.  I just felt better doing two for some reason.  Coromandel is a warm-toned red (my favorite sort of red!) with tiny microshimmer that's more visible in the bottle than on the nail.  Oh, by the way, the nail on my ring finger snapped off last night.  I have no idea what happened :(


See how pretty this red is?  I'm in love with this polish.  A couple weeks ago I met Michelle Mismas of All Lacquered Up for lunchtime fun at Melt.  We had a great time, tasty food and good conversation...and she showed up with a bag of goodies for me!  Coromandel was among those goodies (along with Rescue Beauty Lounge Mismas, MAC So Rich So Pretty and MAC Coral Wave).  Thanks so much, Michelle.  I love this little gem.

Wah, I can't wait for Mad Men!  


I'm kind of in love with the character Don Draper.  The funny thing is that the actor, Jon Hamm, does basically nothing for me.  Like, if I see him on the red carpet or something I'm kind of like, meh.  But when he's Don Draper...oh, delicious.  Rawr.

Other fun news...I think that on Tuesday I'm going to be going to the Ikea in Canton, Michigan with my buddy Amber.  We're both in need of some serious retail therapy (though I should save my dollars because I definitely need at least one of the Rescue Beauty Lounge fall colors) and Ikea is super fun.  Too bad there's not one closer; we're going to make a day out of it, though.  Happily Tuesday is my only day off next week.  I'm thinking that I'm going to get another Helmer.  It scares me that I need one.

Alright, that's all for today.  My friend's graduation party is this afternoon--she graduated from nursing school!  Congratulations Rachel!--so I'll be going to that and hopefully eating cake, and then heading to work.  I hope everyone has a great Sunday and I'll talk to you all tomorrow!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Wet n Wild Insomnia: Blue Jitters

The other day I decided to stop at Rite-Aid on my way home from lunch because I always have pretty good luck with finding fun seasonal collections there.  That day was no exception.  I came across a fun new Wet n Wild display that I can only assume is for Halloween-y-times called Insomnia.  It's the Color Icon series, which Wet n Wild usually busts out for holidays.  I only have one other Color Icon polish and it's from last year's Christmastime collection.  I ended up buying three of them, although I kind of wanted them all.  Blue Jitters is the first one I'm going to show you.





It's is a charcoal jelly with indigo glitter suspended in it.  I don't know what kind of pigment Wet n Wild used, but it dried completely matte.  It also dried almost instantly.  If grit bothers you, then don't bother with this polish.  After one very thick coat of my dying Seche Vite the surface of the polish is still quite gritty.  While that doesn't bother me, I know that it bothers a lot of people.  The polish is pretty enough in sunlight for me to overlook that.  The formula was okay; it became thicker the longer the bottle was open.  It only required two coats, though, so that's nice.


It was so hot outside when I took these pictures that my camera lens fogged up.  We keep it a nice seventy-one degrees in the house and it has been about ninety degrees and super humid outside.  Every day.  It's disgusting and almost unbearable.  


Here are the other two polishes from the Insomnia collection that I picked up.  On the left is Sleepwalker, a charcoal jelly with orange glitter (so Halloween-y!) and on the right is Black Fog, a smoky indigo creme.  I took a picture of the rest of the collection but it came out really awful.  




The other polishes in the collection are: 
Dark Shadow:  a charcoal jelly with silver glitter
Hypnotic Red:  a blue-toned red creme
Mystic Blue:  a deep indigo shimmer
Night Owl:  a vampy purple creme
Prowler:  a charcoal jelly with purple glitter

Prowler looked to be literally exactly the same as Night Prowl, a recently released Wet n Wild Wild Shine that you can get on any Wet n Wild display for ninety-nine cents.  I love that Wet n Wild didn't even change the name much.  Prowler vs. Night Prowl?  Heh.  These Color Icons are $1.99, so if you're looking for a dark jelly with purple glitter, get Night Prowl.  It's a bigger bottle for a dollar less.

Yesterday I received two packages from my dear friend Nathalie of jellynat.  The goodies inside were incredible.  I had so much fun unwrapping each one.  It was like Christmas morning!  Here's a little preview.  Over the next few weeks I'll probably be showing these to you guys as often as I can...so exciting!












The last one is a frankie that Nathalie posted about here.  I love it!  One of the caps on one of the H&M polishes broke in transit; one of the Barry M bottles also broke, but both are still usable so yay!  The box was pretty battered when it showed up.  Thanks postal system!  Anyway, I love everything Nathalie sent.  Thanks Nathalie!  Now I get to put her package together.  Bubble wrap ahoy!

That's all for today.  I'm trying as hard as I can to maintain a regular posting schedule but for some reason it's been difficult to get back into the swing of things.  Thank you for sticking with me, you guys! Hopefully I'll have more pretties for you tomorrow.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

MAC Coral Wave

Good morning, everyone.  It's Thursday!  That means it's almost the weekend (for most of you)!  I've actually been counting down the days until July 25th (which is Sunday) for quite a while.  Y'know why?  Season Four of Mad Men starts on AMC.  Be still my beating heart.  I have never loved a show more than I love Mad Men.  So excited! 



It's definitely time to slather on some cuticle oil.  I don't know why my hands are so dry; it's incredibly humid out every day.  I was hoping that would help my poor dry cuticles, but apparently not.  Anyway, this is MAC Coral Wave.  If you read Short 'n Chic regularly you know how I feel about coral.  If you are new to my insanity, let me break it down for you:  I freaking love coral.  Wanna see my coral trench coat?  Click here.  Some of my favorite coral polishes include:  Chanel Orange Fizz, Wet n Wild Blazed, Rescue Beauty Lounge Starfish Patrick and China Glaze Flip Flop Fantasy.  This MAC polish is nice, but it's a bit more orange than I like my corals to be.  Actually, these pictures don't really do this polish any justice.  It's a very beautiful, soft color.  For some reason I feel like that doesn't translate well in the photos.


The formula on this polish was pretty good.  I used two coats at first but I realized I could still see my nail line so I went back and did a third.  Not a huge deal.  The polish wasn't too thick or too thin and it was easy to work with.  I'm still using Orly Bonder as a base coat, but yesterday when I went to Sally's I decided that I would try a different topcoat.  Seche is fantastic and will probably always be my favorite topcoat, but it's expensive and it's got toulene in it.  I go through this every couple months; I decide I'll try a new topcoat, I try one, I'm disappointed in it, I go back to Seche.  We'll see what happens.  This time I chose Out the Door.  I've heard good things about it and it's a dollar cheaper than Seche Vite.  I can give you my first impressions of OtD already:  it's a lot thinner than Seche Vite; I wasn't expecting that so at first I got too much on the brush and it pooled in my cuticles.  My fault, not the topcoat's.  It smells awful, but so does Seche.  I feel like it doesn't create a completely smooth surface like Seche does.  It also takes a bit longer to dry, which is made of fail.  I pretty much want instant dryness.  I'll let you guys know how it goes.


That's all for today.  I'm hoping that this occurs later:




Yes, I do have to work today so I could just make my own soy latte, but it's so much nicer when someone makes it for you at a different coffee shop.  And puts it in a mug.  And there is a chocolate square involved.  Mmm.  I'll see if I can make this happen.


What do you guys think of Coral Wave?  Does anyone have a favorite coral polish?  Spill, guys.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

American Apparel Factory Grey

Good morning, everyone.  I got up bright and early today to meet a friend at Coffee Inc.  I brought my blogging materials with me (ie my computer) so that I can try to keep up to date on my posts.  Nothing's better on a sunny, eighty degree morning than a huge cup of iced coffee with a couple pumps of sugar free hazelnut.  Mmm.  It's the bestest.





I must apologize for the quality of this manicure.  It's not good.  I blame it on my almost dead bottle of Seche Vite.  Plus I also bashed my pinky on the corner of my laptop as soon as I was done painting it.  It was one in the morning at that point, though, so I didn't feel like fixing it.  This is American Apparel Factory Grey, and it's the last of my AA polishes from my Hipster Haul a couple weeks ago.  Although it's definitely gray, Factory Grey leans quite blue.  Sometimes it looks like it leans purple.  I've realized through my polish adventures that I don't really like straight-up gray cremes.  I never got into the China Glaze Recycle hype and I've never wanted to look for a "real" gray.  Add some cool tones to my grays, though, and we're in business.  Sephora by OPI Metro Chic, for instance, is one of my favorite polishes. AA Factory Grey falls into that same category; it's decidedly gray, but it has strong cool undertones.  It's kind of difficult to tell in my images, but I promise you that that's the case.  


The application on this little guy was on par with the rest of my AA polishes.  The formula was lovely, easily spreadable and it stayed where I put it.  I only needed two coats for perfect opacity.  Also, Factory Grey seemed to be inordinately shiny, even before I added a coat of Seche Vite (what you see in the images does, of course, include Seche).  


So that's the end of my American Apparel series, at least until I buy more hipster polishes.  To refresh your memory I showed you Poppy, Passport Blue, Peacock, California Trooper and Dynasty.  Of all of these I think my favorite was Passport Blue.  It was the polish I was looking most forward to wearing it it didn't disappoint.  The formulas on all of these were uniformly amazing.  At $6 apiece or three for $15, you can't go wrong with these.  


I've been having such lovely days lately.  There is a new coffee shop that opened not far from my house called Erie Island Coffee.  I've been frequenting it.  It's cute; the furniture is kind of modern-looking and the coffee is decent.  Also, any coffee joint that's awesome enough to hang this sign is automatically on my list of win.


That sounds like a fabulous idea.  Plus, y'know, the kid would get a free puppy out of the deal.  So that's nice.  Today I think I'm going to hit up Ulta and Sally's with my friend Amber.  There aren't many fall polishes that I'm too interested in yet, though, so I don't think I'll be buying much.  It's also that awkward time before all the fall collections actually hit brick & mortar stores, so all Ulta really has are sad remnants of spring and summer collections.  I should probably just start ordering stuff online, but really, where's the fun in that?  The hunt is just so thrilling.

That's all for today.  I'm surrounded by people typing on their laptops, so I definitely feel like I fit in here.  Mmm, I love coffee.  Someone get me a double shot and a puppy.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Rescue Beauty Lounge Mismas

Good morning, everyone.  I had a pretty decent weekend so I'm feeling maybe a tad better.  Best not to dwell on that, though.  I think.  I tried to go watch Inception last night because I've heard people raving about it, but it was sold out by the time I got out of work.  I ended up seeing Predators instead, and that was just awesome.  In one of those it's-so-bad-it's-awesome kind of ways.  I haven't got much on the agenda today; I'm meeting a friend for coffee around three and I'm feeling really lazy.  No work until Thursday.  Win.





Today I've got Rescue Beauty Lounge Mismas for you.  You've probably seen this one a million times, but never on me.  I got this very recently as a gift, and I've got to tell you that I couldn't be more grateful.  This color is gorgeous.  It's the perfect medium-toned purple that's beautiful and deep but vibrant and bright at the same time.  The formula was the perfect Rescue Beauty Lounge formula, as usual...except it seemed a little better than other RBLs I've tried.  The consistency of the polish was wonderful; I actually only needed one coat.  It's very unusual that I do one coat and feel satisfied with it, but in this case it was warranted.  Most of the time I get bald patches on a couple nails or something so I feel like I have to do another coat.  Not with Mismas.  This lacquer is perfect.  


You may notice that I chopped off my nails.  It was the strangest thing; this weekend my nails kept breaking.  Not just chipping or anything, but cracking and then peeling off on their own.  I think it happened to three of the nails on my right hand and one on my left.  That usually doesn't happen.  It's not like they were strangely long or anything.  They were feeling pretty strong, too.  No peeling, no bending.  I don't know what the deal was.  Oh well.  I guess it's worth mentioning that I stopped using a basecoat with a nail strengthener in it about a month ago and started using Orly Bonder, which is a rubberized basecoat that helps the polish adhere to the nail.  Before that I think I was using OPI Nail Envy, which is supposed to help my nail health.  Maybe it did and I didn't know it.  Eh.  I'll think about switching back, but I do quite like Bonder.


That's all for today.  I'm not sure what I'll do since I'm kind of all alone-y on my own-y, but I think I need to have some Steffie time.  Y'know, do something for myself by myself.  Everyone needs that every once in a while, right?