Blue & Purple Skittles, and a Colourpop Review

(Ahhhhh sorry y’all, I had this post ready over a week ago but I realized just now that I never actually put it up!)

Hi everyone! Today I have a quick blue and purple mani because I’ve really been digging those colors lately.

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Shower Together is so great – it’s basically a one-coater and isn’t too dark or bright, it’s just the perfect almost-teal (it’s not quite green enough to be called teal, but it definitely leans green). Are You Jelly? is the complete opposite of Shower Together – I think this is four thin coats, and it still look streaky. The color is fab – a bright orchid purple – but ughhhhh the streakiness is so obnoxious. It’s from China Glaze’s 2013 Sunsational collection, which was populated with likewise beautiful but difficult hues, and I’m never quite sure if the brilliant colors are worth the struggle to get the polish on nicely.

The striped nail got a little smeared when I put top coat on, but you can barely see it in person.

The striped nail got a little smeared when I put top coat on, but you can barely see it in person.

I do like this combo, though, and I was actually inspired to go blue/purple by the glitter, Wet n Wild’s Believe Me, They’re Real. BMTR was part of a holiday collection back in…2012, I want to say? I grabbed a few because they were dupes for the much-pricier Nails Inc. glitter polishes. BMTR is a pretty opaque glitter comprised mostly of glitter that’s a lovely blue almost the same color as Shower Together, peppered with royal purple glitter pieces.

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I accidentally smudged AYJ? on my ring finger so I cut a few random pieces out of washi tape and haphazardly applied them to my top-coated nail, painted on one easy coat of Shower Together, then immediately pulled the tape off. I’m actually really please with how it looks – it sort of reminds me of the design on Fruit Stripes gum – and I love how the richness of Shower Together makes the colors together look bright but not too 80s. I topped everything off with the Julie G fast-dry top coat I got at the Rite-Aid event a few weeks ago, and it was dry in a snap. I love that stuff.

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In other news, today I got my first order from Colourpop Cosmetics, the indie makeup brand that’s taken Instagram by storm with its wide range of colors are super-low prices. I ordered some neutral-colored matte eye shadows (Bill, To-A-T), a lippie stick and its matching lip liner (Dalia), and Colourpop’s lip primer. Unfortunately, I wasn’t too thrilled with the eye shadows – To-A-T pulled very terra cotta on my skin when it looked like a med-tone brown online, and while I’d been super excited for Bill after seeing swatches online with it being a lovely mid-tone taupe or a lavender gray, either one I would’ve been happy with, it was basically invisible on my lids. I think part of the problem is that there’s barely any swatches on the site – there’s a few, and I appreciate that those do have show the colors on both a lighter and darker skin, even some of those aren’t color accurate according to bloggers’ swatches I’ve seen. As for the lip products, Dahlia is a great burgundy hue, but the lipstick went on patchy in one coat even over the liner. I’m pretty disappointed since I’ve only read gushing reviews, and maybe I built it up too much. I think if I order in the future I’ll stick to brighter colors, which are easier to be opaque (lippies) and to see exactly what hue they are (shadows).

Dalia lip pie stick, Dalia lip liner, Bill  eyeshaow, To-A-T eyeshadow, all without primer

Dalia lip pie stick, Dalia lip liner, Bill eyeshaow, To-A-T eyeshadow, all without primer

Did anyone else have a not-so-great experience with Colourpop or have any recs for products they love? Let me know in the comments! I really do want to give them another shot, but ehhh…. Anyway, thank you for reading! See you next time – A x

Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice!

Imagine how excited I was to find out that Cinespia, the company that shows films in the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, was showing Beetlejuice as their annual Halloween offering! One of my favorite movies, I knew immediately I had to coordinate nails for the event!

French Tip White, Def Defying, Funky Dunky, Black Creme

French Tip White, Def Defying, Funky Dunky, Black Creme

Obviously Beetlejuice’s black-and-white striped suit was going to be the biggest element of this mani, but I wanted to add some color, too, which is how I decided on adding purple and green for Beetlejuice’s shirt and hair and also for Lydia’s bedroom.

Oops I forgot to put Connect the Dots in the bottle pic!

Oops I forgot to put Connect The Dots in the bottle pic!

I’m so pleased with how these came out! It’s always super tedious to place the striping tape juuuuuuuuust so to get perfectly even stripes, but the effect is super cool when it’s done. Besides Beetlejuice’s famous suit, there’s a lot of black-and-white elements in the film, so I put a coat Lynderella’s Connect The Dots over the purple and green nails. I feel like the chaos of CTD mimics the crazy feel of some of the sets in the movie.

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If you haven’t seen Beetlejuice, go watch it right now. It’s in the best Tim Burton era – the late ’80s – where he manages to hit all the right notes between dark, goofy, and hilarious. The story centers on Barbara and Adam Maitland, a young married couple that dies and has to come to grips with the afterlife – namely, the fact that they’re stuck in their house for 120 years and don’t take kindly to the new family that’s almost immediately moved in. The Deetzes, from New York, are comprised of a stressed real estate man; his ridiculous, trying-to-hard-to-be-cool wife (the amazing Catherine O’Hara, who is sublime); and teenager Lydia. Lydia Deetz along with Wednesday Addams were my favorites growing up – I’ve always loved weird, spooky things, and these characters were the poster girls for weird and spooky.

Me too, girl. via

Me too, girl.

It makes me kinda sad there aren’t really characters like these two and Daria – smart, surly girls who like whatever weird stuff they like unabashedly and won’t put a smile on their face just to make others happy. I know I sound old but man, I feel like kids’ and teenagers’ stuff now is all faux happy and shiny, with characters who look impossibly perfect at all times. You won’t find anything like Lydia’s pointy bangs, that’s for sure.

Anyway, the Maitlands have a hard time being seen by the living, so they can’t scare the Deetzes out of their home.
Poor Barbara, stuck for 100 years in that terrible, frumpy-ass dress. via

Poor Barbara, stuck for 100 years in that terrible, frumpy-ass dress. via

They turn to Beetlejuice, a “bio-exorcist” who claims to be able to help. However, they quickly realize Beetlejuice is more than they bargained for and has his own agenda, but he won’t be gotten rid of so easily. The weird thing is, for a movie that’s named after him, Beetlejuice is only in the movie for about 17 minutes. They make it count, though – Beetlejuice is pervy and gross but also really funny, and it’s definitely an iconic role for Micheal Keaton.

At the Cinespia showing I learned that the writer (who was in attendance but didn’t stand up to talk, boo!) also wrote The Addams Family, so this guy is basically responsible for creating my spooky obsessions as a kid. Also at Cinespia there were a LOT of really cool costumes – there were quite a few Adams and red wedding dress Lydias, but also a Miss Argentina, a Dante’s Inferno girl, and one of the dead football players. I was kicking myself all night for not donning a costume, too!

I hope you enjoyed this post! I have two more Halloween manis to go before the month is over, and the next one I’ve been planning since last year. Thanks for reading! See you next time – A x

Witching Hour

I had a stamping mani in mind for today but I wasn’t really feeling it, honestly – stamping often takes me more than one try to look decent and I just wanted something easy, which is how I came up with this simple witchy look.
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This is two coats coat of WnW’s Black Creme, my go-to black that has unfortunately become goopy. I then added a drop of regular top coat and gently placed my Hex nail charm.
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This is my first time trying out Hex and I’m really pleased! I was bummed when the star/moon charm I originally wanted was out of stock because it was a little bigger, but although this guy looks a smidge too small for my monster nails I still like it a lot. I’m going to take it off after a day to make sure I don’t lose it (these charms usually don’t stay long on me since I put my hands through the ringer every day).
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On my pinkie I used Pure Ice’s Gold (great name) to make an angled tip. I debated added a little something else but I think sometimes less is more, despite my inner magpie that always wants to throw on additional color/glitter/shiny!
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The movie I’m discussing today is not a Halloween movie, but it’s got that spooky feel that I love so I’m including it: Coraline. This movie is weird but awesome; based on the Neil Gaiman book, it tells the story if a blue-haired little girl who has two flighty/scatterbrained parents who’ve moved her to an odd apartment building in the middle of nowhere.

Bored now. via

Bored now.

Coraline feels neglected by her parents and bored, so she starts exploring and eventually finds a secret little door that’s got a brick wall behind it. Later that night, Coraline follows a mouse through that same door, which now leads to the Other world, where her Other Mother and Other Father are warm and attentive, and give her everything she wants. She keeps going back despite warnings from the other tenants in the apartment building, but eventually the Other Mother reveals her true colors.
10-24-14 Coraline creepy handWhile not outright scary, Coraline is delightfully dark, spooky, and moody, which I think by now you’ve learned I love. The animation in this film is ridiculously gorgeous, and my mind was blown when I saw this behind-the-scenes featurette on how they created Coraline’s teeny, tiny clothes (minuscule knitting needles ahhhh!). I also love that Coraline isn’t some sugary-sweet little girl character – she’s surly and sometimes whiny, and is a bit mean to the only other kid in her building, a boy named Wybie, who tries to hang with her. This isn’t her whole character, but I appreciate adding these traits in because I like when kids are portrayed with full personalities like anyone else. I saw this in 3D in theaters and got the 3D DVD because I love how subtle it is – adding just enough dimension to give the elements realistic depth without being super in your face. If you’re in the mood for a creepy but not scary flick, I highly recommend Coraline!
Coraline vs. her puppeteer via

Coraline vs. her puppeteer

Thanks for reading! I’ve got a mani based on one of my all-time favorite movies coming up next. See you then – A x

Candy Splatter

I wanted to do something completely different with today’s look but I was stuck for a while before I thought of doing my usual blood splatter mani with Halloween colors instead of red. I’m pretty pleased with the result, although adding the black makes me think more of Reese’s Pieces than the candy corn look I was originally going for. :/

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I started with a base of everyone’s favorite white with a drop of gray, My Boyfriend Scales Walls. It was still streaky at two coats, but I knew I’d be splattering over it. Then came the messy part! I love splatter nails but I swear, I can never get it quuuuuuite right – see how on my pinkie the polish just looks smudged instead of splattered? And yet it’s perfect on my middle finger. Blerg. Maybe I’ll go back to using a regular straw instead of my current method of coffee stirrer, although in the past that just made big splotches. Sigh – I can’t win!

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However, I’ve finally landed on a way to make cleanup a breeze – smear Vaseline around your cuticles! I read this somewhere a long time ago but this was the first time I’ve tried it out myself, and it worked like a dream. After carefully making sure not to get any Vaseline on my nails themselves, I splattered away and when I was done, I just used an orange stick to gently scrape away the Vaseline from my cuticles, taking the excess polish with it. Huzzah!

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My Halloween-y movie today is a new favorite that I just discovered thanks to Netflix Instant – The Awakening. It’s set during one of my favorite time periods – the spiritualist movement of the 1910s/early 1920s – in England, where Rebecca Hall plays Florence, a famous writer who busts fake mediums making their living by tricking poor grievers into thinking they’ve contacted their deceased relatives. A teacher from a remote boarding school contacts her, urged by the school matron who’s a fervent fan of Florence’s work, and against her initial judgement, Florence makes the journey to debunk the pupils’ belief that a ghost is haunting the grounds.

I love, love, love the cinematography in this movie, especially how everything is gray and washed out, completely visually evoking the hopelessness of the time immediately after WWI and the massive influenza outbreak that together killed millions and basically destroyed a generation of young men. The only thing I loved more was Rebecca Hall’s performance – she is perfectly curt but not rude/mean, and shows a sense of humor lurking under Florence’s businesslike facade. I wish she were a bigger star – she’s been fantastic in everything I’ve seen her in, but I think she’s fallen into the Keira Knightley trap of being typecast as a “period” actress.
Oh, and baby Bran Stark is one of the boarding school boys! via

Oh, and baby Bran Stark is one of the boarding school boys!

I love this movie so much because it’s a haunted house (which I’ve already mentioned I love), there’s a pitch-perfect moodiness that accentuates the setting of a horror story in isolated England, the mystery is interesting and not cliched, and there are some genuine scares along the way! If you’re in the mood for a more atmospheric than jumpy scary movie, you should definitely try The Awakening.

Anyone ever seen The Awakening and loved it as much as I did? Any thoughts on this mani? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading! I’ll be back in a few days with another Halloween look. ‘Til then – A x

Dark Glamour

Hi everyone! How’s your October going? it’s a super busy month for me and I’ve been planning nonstop – I’ve got my apartment fully decorated for Halloween, a trip to a pumpkin patch scheduled for next weekend, and I’m starting to put together my costume, yay! Today I’ve got a manicure using one of my favorite spooky color combos, black and green.

Orly's Here Comes Trouble and Sunglasses At Night

Orly’s Here Comes Trouble and Sunglasses At Night

I originally want to do something with green and purple glitter, but then I couldn’t find the purple glitter I wanted so I ended up with this look and I love it! I used one coat of Wet ‘N Wild’s Black Creme, my go-to black, and added a layer of top coat to my middle two nails. After an hour or so, I applied hole reinforcement stickers at the cuticle then painted two thin coats of Here Comes Trouble, and removed the stickers. I love Here Comes Trouble – it’s a perfect grass green, has a subtle depth from the combo of fine glitter and small hexes, and even has a pretty smooth texture that only needs one layer of top coat.

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I was less impressed with Sunglasses At Night. I’ve been picking up and putting back down this polish every time I go to my fav polish supply store, and a few weeks ago I finally bought it because I thought it would be perfect for Halloween. Sunglasses At Night is composed of black holographic bar glitter in a sheer tinted base, and while I’m not normally a fan of bar glitter, something about it really caught my eye. Unfortunately, the formula is really shitty – it’s super watery and difficult to grab a good amount of glitter. I do love the actual glitter itself, though – it’s definitely holographic but when it’s on the base color looks blue instead of black, which is pretty unique and looks really cool.

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Today’s movie post is a total guilty pleasure – Practical Magic. This movie is not great, and at times is quite painfully ’90s (that soundtrack!) but for some reason, every time this movie is on ABC Family, I have to watch it. I’m totally a sucker for the “small-town New England in October” setting, so that’s definitely a part of this movie’s allure for me. Anyway, if you’ve never seen the movie, it has three generations of Owens witches – Aunts Jet and Frances, main characters Sally (Sandra Bullock) and Gillian (Nicole Kidman), and Sally’s daughters Kylie and Antonia – living in a small town where Sally is trying to deal with her husband’s death and raising her kids in a place where people gossip about the Owens being witches.

Sally, of course, is the “super talented witch who just wants to be normal and doesn’t use her powers” cliche, trying to raise her kids to be “normal,” which is difficult as they live with the super witchy aunts. Sally is the wild child who left home as a teen, and the main story is kicked off when Gilly calls Sally for help escaping abusive Jimmy. The women end up accidentally killing Jimmy as they try to escape, and when they bury him in the aunts’ backyard they think they’re safe, until weird things start happening and a cop comes calling to find him.

There are a few jump-y moments when Jimmy comes back, and I think the movie does a nice job at creating tension for the scenes with Jimmy and later with the hot cop who’s investigating. The end exorcism (I guess?) scene is also pretty cool. Mostly, I just really love the sisters’ relationship – Gillian is flighty and immature, Sally is stubborn and jaded, but they appreciate each other despite their flaws and will do anything for each other. Also, Stockard Channing and Dianne Wiest really make the most out of their short screen time as the aunts. When you’re not in the mood for something scary but still want that October/Halloween feel, Practical Magic is a good movie to pop in.

Thoughts on this mani? Anyone else feel oddly compelled to always watch Practical Magic? Has anyone read the book (which I also like a lot)? Let me know in the comments! Thank you so much for reading, and I’ll see you next time – A x