Baroness X La Luz 2.0

I took the week off to deal with some personal stuff and to recover from illness. I’m still recovering but I feel a lot better with each day. Alright, I’ll confess I have been procrastinating by playing Pokémon Go as well. I decided to give the game a try since so many of my friends were having a great deal of fun with it.. As if I needed another distraction from blogging, right? I have a bit of a backlog of polishes I purchased to review but I can always fit them in as time allows. I figure no one minds seeing pretty polish.

Today I have another beautiful polish from Baroness X as well as  a new hand care product. I really enjoy this indie brand a great deal bot for the quality hand care products and their unique polishes. I purchased the reformulated version of La Luz, appropriately named La Luz 2.0. The new version is supposed to have a slightly cooler toned purple. I don’t own the original formula of La Luz to compare. To me, it looks like a light orchid purple. It could almost pass for pink leaning lavender as well. I do love the color a great deal.

The new color is supposed to help the turquoise shimmer stand out better. The shimmer in La Luz 2.0 is very strong and stands out nicely. I love these polishes with contrasting shimmer that really stands out. In addition to being a beautiful shimmer polish there is a soft scattered holographic added to it as well as a few larger silver holographic particles. I like how the holographic adds a little something extra but doesn’t take away from the beauty of the shimmer.

La Luz 2.0 dries to a smooth satin finish and doesn’t have a textured feel at all. This is actually one of the easiest shimmers to use that I currently have in my collection. Shimmers can be notorious for being very sheer and needing several coats to be fully opaque. Indie shimmers tend to have a lot better formulas and La Luz 2.0 really blew me away. It was almost fully opaque on the first coat and a second deepened the color to match what was in the bottle and made it even and fully opaque. As I have mentioned before, I enjoy the wide brushed with the rounded tips that Baroness X uses. The tip fits the curve of my cuticle pretty well and almost covers my nail in a single swipe so I don’t ever overwork the polish.

I did not use any topcoat for my photos so you could see what the polish looks like in its natural state. However, I’m sure La Luz 2.0 would look even better with a glossy topcoat and the shimmer is so strong that I doubt it would be lost with one.

You can purchase La Luz 2.0 now from the Baroness X website. I highly recommend this polish if you are a fan of contrasting shimmer polishes or just a fan of purple polish. What do you think? Is this a polish you would want to try?

The Color Box July 2016 Teal All the Things Review

As I promised here is my full review of all the polishes that will come in the teal edition of The Color Box. I can say with full certainty that all five polishes are different and are different shades of teal. There is a nice range of shades from light to dark and a variety of finishes. I will start from lightest to darkest.

Happy Birthday Teal Me

First up is the collaboration between Amanda of Amanda Loves Polish and Carrie of Darling Diva Polish. This is the lightest polish in the box and is packed with pink, purple, and light blue subtle shimmers, purple, pink to gold shifting flakies as well as some holographic shimmer and glitters. Even though there is a whole lot going on in this polish it was still easy to apply and was fully opaque in two coats. The base color is a very light teal and is really gorgeous. Carrie, the maker of Darling Diva, made this in honor of Amanda’s birthday. Happy Birthday, Amanda!

Manna’s Marvelous Masterpiece

This is Manna of Manna’s Manis collaboration with Taryn of Anchor & Heart Lacquer. Keeping with our founder’s MMM theme, Manna’s Marvelous Masterpiece is the second lightest, and the brightest, of all the teal shades featured in this quarter’s box. Taryn, the maker of Anchor & Heart Lacquer, did a really beautiful job with the color of this polish. In addition to being a beautiful bright teal the polish features a strong blue shimmer, gold flakies, and a soft linear holographic. This was two buttery smooth coats for me.

Merman, Pops, MerMAN

Right in the middle of the teal shades is my polish I created with Julie of Blue Eyed Girl Lacquer. I did a full post on my polish and you can view it here for full details. To give a quick refresher this is a bright mid toned teal with a strong gold to copper shifting shimmer and flakies that shift from blue, violet, to aqua. There is no holographic in this polish because we wanted to allow the shimmer and flakies to be as color shifting as possible. This was two easy coats, but you may need three coats if you do really thin coats.

For those curious how similar my polish is to Happy Birthday Teal Me they are pretty different. My polish is darker and doesn’t have any holographic while Happy Birthday Teal Me is a holographic lover’s dream polish. The color shift in our flakies is also different. You will absolutely want both polishes and can easily justify having both. Trust me, you’ll be very sad if you miss out on them.

Steal the One

This gorgeous darker teal polish is the creation of Jen of XOXOJen along with Christy, the maker ofKBShimmer and is inspired by the Orlean’s song “Still the One.” This is a rich, darker, teal with gold to copper shifting flakies and a blue inner flame. The linear holographic in this polish is very strong and is visible even in indoor lighting. The formula is excellent, no issues, and took two coats to be fully opaque. I love super linear holographics like this.

Teal the End of Time

This beauty is by Lisa of Cosmetic Sanctuary and Kendahl of Firecracker Lacquer and is the darkest of the teal polishes and even though it looks bluer in the photos it really is teal in person. This gorgeous dark teal has a strong pink shimmer in it with a dusting of scattered holographic. You guys know me and how I’m a huge fan of shimmer polishes and this one is stunning. The scattered holographic is a really nice touch as well. This was another two coaters with a nice formula. If you do thinner coats you might need three coats for full opacity but most will be just fine with two. I love that this polish has a strong blue lean to it and the shimmer is very visible and gorgeous.

Overall Impression

I have to say I was very impressed with all the polishes in the teal box. I really commend all my fellow bloggers and makers who participated in this edition of The Color Box because teal is not an easy color to do simply because people have a variety of opinions as to what constitutes a teal shade. It can also be really difficult to not dupe each other so the fact this box features five totally different polishes is really impressive.

I had such an incredible time working with the makers and bloggers on this box and it was easily one of my favorite experiences as a blogger so far. Through this experience I learned that I really do enjoy collaborations a great deal and I certainly look forward to opportunities to do more collaborations with other bloggers and makers in the future.

The teal edition of The Color Box, “Teal All the Things” will be available for preorder starting June 27 inThe Color Box shop. The preorder will end on July 4th. The box will sell for $45.00 in addition to a flat rate shipping fee. If you’re a fan of teal polish, or blue green shades in general, I highly recommend the entire box. I, personally, don’t have a favorite from this box because all five polishes are equally amazing. Do you plan on purchasing the teal edition of The Color Box?

Blue Eyed Girl Lacquer Foux Du Fafa Collection

If you have read my blog for any length of time you know I love collections and polishes with a sense of humor. Needless to say, the Foux Du Fafa collection by Blue Eyed Girl lacquer was right up my alley. This collection is inspired by Flight of the Conchords so I will start out this review with the catchy tune this collection is named after. Feel free to jam out while you read this post.

Blue Eyed Girl Lacquer Foux Du Fafa Collection

I have to give full disclosure that I am still a beginner at stamping and various other nail art techniques so you will have to forgive my lack of intricate designs. I will say that this collection works really well for beginner and expert nail artists alike. This is why I was so excited for the challenge of doing this review and why I jumped for joy when Julie offered me the chance to review this collection for her. There are so many super talented nail artists out there and I love looking at their gorgeous work. However, I know I, personally, can get really discouraged at the lack of ideas for those of us who are still learning the basics.

The Foux Du Fafa collection consists of five crème polishes that are designed to stamp as well as water marble. The polishes also work really well with vinyls because they are opaque in 1-2 coats. First off I will show you a swatch of each polish with any pertinent details and show you a nail art look to help get you inspired to give these a try, or give you inspiration on how you can use these if you already own the Foux Du Fafa collection.

One thing I want to note right off the bat is these crèmes look much darker on the nail when you use them as a regular crème polish for a full manicure. A few of the colors will look almost black on the nail when worn this way. However, when you use them for stamping those colors look much brighter. I will point out which colors this occurs with in the individual polish’s details.

We’re Vincible

Hopefully rappers won’t have hurt feelings over this gorgeous mustard yellow crème. We’re Vincible is inspired by the song “Hurt Feelings” and is a true mustard color.

I found this color a bit harder to stamp with than some of the darker ones but it still definitely stamps. I found the design transferred better when I used my squishy sticky stamper versus my firmer one. I ended up doing a nail art design with vinyls to show how great this polish worked with vinyls. I used Zoya’s Fei Fei because the gold glitter in it matched We’re Vincible perfectly. For my accent nail I used Zoya’s Ciara underneath We’re Vincible for a little punch of color.

Robo Aggression

All the humans are dead! Not really, but I’m sure the robots would love this pretty mid toned gray crème if robots had nails. Robo Aggression had one of the thicker formulas of the five polishes and I was able to get it fully opaque in one coat but used two for the photo. Because of the thicker formula Robo Aggression is one of the easiest polishes in the collection to stamp with. I was able to lift the design from the stamping plate on the first try with this one. I, personally, prefer Robo Aggression as a stamping and nail art polish than one I would wear on its own as a full manicure because the formula leans a bit thick for my tastes to be used as a regular nail polish. But if you’re looking for a medium gray that will cover quickly then Robo Aggression will get the job done.

Grays like this really look fantastic with the neon and bright colors that are so popular during the summer season. For this reason I chose to use Robo Aggression to show how it looks with neon polish. I think this gray would also look really nice with the bleached neons that are so popular this summer.

Too Many Misters

This sexy deep green is inspired by “Too Many Dicks (On The Dance Floor)” Too Many Misters had a formula consistency very similar to We’re Vincible. This one defiantly needed two coats to be fully opaque. I was able to stamp with Too many Misters but it took a few extra tries for me to figure out that sweet spot because I’m still learning. A more experienced stamper won’t have that issue though. I really dig how the color underneath impacts how dark the green looks on top. Granted, that could also be due to my amateur stamping skills. It’s a really nice green to have for nail art. And if you like wearing really dark greens this may be up your alley.

I took me awhile to decide what polishes to pair with Too Many Misters because I had a bunch that it would look really nice with. I ended up going for a few of the bleached neons from the Baroness X Southland Sunsets collection.

Freaky Dream

Inspired by “I Told You I was Freaky.” This deep blackened purple crème reminds me a lot of a crème version of OPI’s Lincoln Park after Dark as a full manicure. However, this is one of the polishes that looks much lighter and vibrant when you use it for stamping. Freaky Dream stamps incredibly well and I was able to get a good design transfer with it on the first try.

I stamped Freaky Dream over a gradient of a few more shades from the Baroness X Southland Sunsets collection  just to show again how cool these look over shades that are on trend for the summer. Yeah, I am a bit obsessed with bleached neons this year. You really don’t have to wait for the fall to break out the Foux Du Fafa collection.

Rent Boy

It would have been totally wrong if the polish inspired by “You Don’t Have To Be a Prostitute” was any other color but red. Rent Boy is extremely versatile because it works well as both a regular nail polish and as a stamping and water marbling polish. This was another polish I was able to get a successful design transfer from my stamping plate on the first try. But just like Freaky Dream and Too Many Misters Rent Boy looks much more saturated and vibrant when used with stamping and water marbling. On the nail as a regular polish Rent Boy looks like a blackened burgundy but when used for stamping and water marbling it looks much more like a vibrant berry color.

I was dying to try Rent Boy over Oh My Majesty from OPI’s Alice through the Looking Glass collection. I really like stamping over shimmer polishes and Rent boy both complimented the shimmer in Oh My Majesty but also stood out really well against it.

Overall Impression

I really enjoyed this collection and I’m pretty sure I will be using the polishes quite a bit. What I really liked about this collection besides the fun inspiration is how versatile it is. Robo Aggression, Freaky Dream, and Rent Boy are standard colors anyone should have in a stamping polish. But then we also have some more unique colors like We’re Vincible and Too Many Misters.

As I said in the beginning of this post I’m, by no means, super experienced with stamping. I’m still very much a beginner so the fact that I was able to stamp successfully with the polishes from this collection speaks highly of their quality. I’m even less experienced with water marbling. So if I can get some designs going on the first try with these polishes you can as well. Someone who is more experienced with water marbling will have a great deal of success with these and find them easy to work with. All five of the colors spread out nicely.

The Foux Du Fafa collection is not a new collection from Blue Eyed Girl lacquer but it is still available for purchase. We are getting a lot of neon and bright colors right now since it’s the summer season and as I showed in this post you can easily mix and match some of those brighter colors with those from this collection to achieve some interesting nail art looks.

If you are new to stamping I really recommend you purchase Robo Aggression, Rent Boy, and Freaky Dream. Those stamp every bit as well as the Sally Hansen Insta Dri polishes but you won’t have to work lightning fast with these polishes so it gives you a little bit of extra time to line up your design on your nail or on a decaling surface. You will want to be sure to allow these to dry completely before applying topcoat because I noticed a bit of pigment transfer if I wasn’t patient enough.

I really liked We’re Vincible as a regular polish in addition to using it for nail art. I enjoy these funky mustard yellow colors, especially in a crème form. If you’re not so interested in nail art I highly recommend you get We’re Vincible because we don’t see colors like this very often and the formula is excellent. Yellow polishes don’t always have such nice, opaque, formulas so it’s nice to have one that is so easy to use. If you plan to wear any of these as regular polish you should be fine in regards to staining. I didn’t notice any issues with staining but you’ll want to wear a basecoat under these for sure.

If water marbling is your thing you should really get all five polishes because they are great colors to mix in with a wide variety of shades and seasonal colors. You’ll get a lot of mileage out of these and they will work consistently well for you.

The Foux Du Fafa polishes retail for $8.50 individually or $42.50 for the entire set. You can purchase them on the Blue Eyed Girl Lacquer website. Which ones are you favorite? What kind of nail art would you like to use these for?

Fireworks Photography

I have been feeling a bit under the weather this week and have not had a chance to do any nail blogging so I decided to switch gears a little bit and show off some more of my photography.

Since it was the Fourth of July recently I used the holiday as an opportunity to practice a type of photography I have the least amount of experience with which is photos taken in very low lighting of fast moving objects. I think fireworks are some of the hardest objects to photograph but I like how even failed attempts end up with some cool, unintended, effects.

I took these photos with an f/1.8 50mm prime lens. my theory was I would be able to pop the aperture wide open in order to allow as much light in as possible and get a bokeh effect with the light. I had to take the photos at a very fast shutter speed with continuous burst. But even so I needed a faster shutter speed. I ended up with some interesting long exposure effects. I will certainly need to continue to practice and research how to make these kind of images more successfully.

Bokeh Boom

I really like the golden sparks and the red smoke in this photo. The red “bokeh” globes look kind of like stars.

More red globes and smoke. It’s like a red nebula.

This photo reminded me of a purple flower.

The colors came out amazing in his one.

Another shot I especially liked. It really does look like that concept art NASA releases.

Of course, I am by no means an expert and this was just a fun experiment. I look forward to continuing to practice and research different types of photography and expanding in that hobby. In he meantime I hope to have another nail related post here very soon once I am feeling a bit better.