June Nail Art Challenge #5: Unicorn!

Whoops, sorry, this should’ve gone up yesterday. Today’s theme is not really my jam, but it still came out pretty cute anyway!

6.19.16 Fancy Finger Guns bottles

I’ll be frank – I don’t like cutesy stuff, so a “unicorn” challenge was not really my cup of tea, but I decided to just lean into it and get all pink and sparkly! Bottoms Up has recently become my favorite pink – it’s an amazingly neon, bubblegum, ridiculous Barbie pink and I figured it would be perfect for a unicorn mani! Unfortunately, once I attempted to stamp over Bottoms Up, I had some real issues that made it take forever to get looking halfway decent. I used some Winstonia stamping plates to place a bunch of random stars on my middle finger, then the big unicorn on my ring finger.

6.19.16 Fancy Finger Guns curled

If you’re gonna do a unicorn mani, you might as well throw in some holo, right? I put my old buddy Mirrorball on my pinky, pointer, and ring fingers. The light was super weird outside so these pictures aren’t great, but I’ve used it before on this blog if you want to see how amazing and sparkly holo-y it is!

6.19.16 Fancy Finger Guns diagonal

Okay guys, I have discovered my new TV obsession, but because it’s British there’s only six episodes per season, so I’ve already watched the whole thing this past week and now I’m suffering withdrawals. :( The show is Peaky Blinders, and it’s awesome.

Peaky Blinders is apparently the UK’s first gangster TV show – it’s drawn comparisons to Boardwalk Empire (gangsters doing business with booze and race tracks in the 1920s), but I thought Boardwalk was boring as hell and never even got through half of the first season when it premiered, so I think the comparisons are pretty superficial. Anyway, this show is very cinematic, like all great TV shows in our recent Golden Age, and definitely has a style all of its own, one of which is using modern British rock songs from bands like The Kills, PJ Harvey, Arctic Monkeys, and of course, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds – whose awesome “Red Right Hand” provides the theme song. The show also never met a slow-mo scene set to music it didn’t like, but that’s part of the fun.
Seriously, some shots are really just gorgeous. via

Seriously, some shots are really just gorgeous. via

The show does get bloodier and more violent as it goes on, though, so be warned if you’re squeamish! Also, one word of (casting) warning: I read that Tom Hardy, my Mad Max: Fury Road love, “starred” in the second season, but he’s barely in it. Don’t get me wrong – he makes the most of his time, and his character is hilarious (much-needed humor, by the way, because it can be quite a dark show), but he’s not in it very much. That’s okay, though, because weirdo eye candy Cillian Murphy is in like, 90% of the show.
Also, all anyone does on this show (besides maim or murder) is smoke and drink. via

Also, all anyone does on this show (besides maim or murder) is smoke and drink. via

A few things I don’t totally love about the show: I will admit, besides matriarch Aunt Polly (who I love), the female characters can be a bit underdeveloped, but it definitely got better in the third season, and I’m hoping it will continue to improve. Also, the criminal plots get a bit ridiculously twisty and difficult to follow in the second and third seasons, but at this point I mostly just watch for the characters, anyway. There were also some strong Godfather-esque moments in season three, in particular (some very “Micheal Corleone behind a desk” imagery), but I think that’s kind of inevitable when you’re doing a show about a gangster family. And anyway, much like Boardwalk Empire, The Godfather never really held my attention the way Peaky Blinders does. I’m sure it’s partly that I’m such an Anglophile, but I just think that for all its darkness and violence, the characters and the show’s style (the smoky urban setting, the costumes, the music) make it really enjoyable. Definitely at least give it a try if you’re looking for a new show!
Love you, Aunt Pol! via

Love you, Aunt Pol! via

Thanks for reading my little fluffy unicorn/dark drama show mashup post today! See you next time – A x

June Nail Art Challenge #2: Colors You Don’t Usually Wear

Today’s prompt and mani are all about one color, a color I have a weird bias against – red.

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I don’t really gravitate towards red in general, although sometimes – usually in the fall or holiday time – I do like a nice wine/vampy or metallic red. But something about just a plain red creme polish I really don’t like – I remember getting super annoyed when I’d watch Parks & Rec because Leslie often had red nail polish, and I couldn’t stand it. I’m not quite sure what it is about it that presses my buttons – I guess maybe it just seems dated to me now? Like very ’80s or something (even though red nail polish has been around since I think the 1920s, and was one of the few nail polish colors until fairly recently, history-wise)? I even prefer a nude manicure to a red creme one, and I am definitely not an all-nude polish type of chick! Anyway, because of this, I almost never wear red in a mani unless it’s holiday time or 4th of July, so when I saw this prompt I knew immediately that I’d be doing something with red.

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Another problem I have with red is what to pair with it – anything metallic seems Christmassy, as does any kind of green or white. I hate the red/pink pairing that fashion-y people are always trying to make a thing, and red + purple doesn’t really work for me, either, while red + yellow just looks like advertising colors (specifically, McDonald’s). For my taste, basically the only options left were gray or a blue that wasn’t cobalt (because then it gets into 4th of July territory), so I opted for a bright turquoise to make a pop-y combo. Then I chose to do a bubbly gradient of dots because I thought it would be a fun and peppy look to make me not hate seeing red on my nails!

Ugh freaking reds - I let this dry for 15 minutes, but it still streaked when I put on top coat :/

Ugh freaking reds – I let this dry for 15 minutes, but it still streaked when I put on top coat :/

Well, that seems like one big rant against red, ha! I’m pretty pleased with how this came out, though. Sometimes I wonder if the nail art that I do isn’t exciting or intricate enough to warrant a blog, but I think that in this age of super crazy nail art on Instagram and in famous salons that maybe there’s some merit to the kind that I do – I think maybe it’s nice to just show some cute or pretty looks that can be done with minimal tools and time. I see enough page views that makes me think this is true, so thank you for your support! Also, if you ever have any ideas of nail art or colors you’d like to see, leave a comment and I’ll do my best to feature it! As always, thank you so much for reading, and I’ll see you next time with a super fun prompt that I really loved – A x

May Nail Art Challenge #4: Coral!

Hello, friends! How was your weekend? I had a really fun one – a little too much fun, if I’m being honest, so I spent most of Sunday recovering ha. But today it’s a lovely, bright day and I have a blinding mani to share with you!

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The fourth prompt of my nail art challenge was simply “coral,” and since that’s the color of one of my favorite nail polishes ever – China Glaze’s Surfin’ For Boys (SFB) – the polish I’d base the mani around was a no-brainer! I’ve used SFB a few times before on this blog, but seriously – if you don’t have it, you need it. It’s a blinding coral with pink shimmer that looks good on everyone and it’s just such a fun, summery color. I’ve given away about six bottles of SFB because everyone loves it, so it’s the perfect polish gift!

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I thought Orly’s Mirrorball would be a fun accent to go along with SFB, and thank goodness the sun came out so I could capture how awesome it is! Mirrorball is another polish I feel like everyone needs. It’s kind of an odd polish – it looks like it might be sheer, but it’s definitely too opaque to layer (it barely needs two coats), and it’s got both a linear holographic flare and small holographic glitter pieces mixed in – but it’s freaking gorgeous!

5.10.15 Fancy Finger Guns around bottle

I was thinking of using a silver to watermarble with on my pointer, but I wasn’t sure if any of my silvers were a) opaque enough, b) would react well in the water, so I used an old Sally Hansen black (Black Out, I think?). I haven’t attempted watermarbling in years, so I knew this would be a crap shoot, but it wasn’t actually too bad! At first my water was too cold, I think, because the polishes didn’t spread out, so I used slightly warm water and they spread out but then sort of separated? And then when I tried to make a design, it just sort of…swirled instead of giving me a nice, crisp design like this. Sigh. I actually like the design I ended up with, but dude – seriously, watermarbling is SO HARD. I don’t know how some people do it so easily!

This mani got me excited all over again for SFB, I’m thinking about putting it on my toes now that it’s officially sandal weather here in Nashville! Thanks for reading, and get ready, because the next nail art prompt is totally me (Halloween in May🎃👻🕸😍). See ya next time – A x

Nail Quickies: Pink and Blue

Hello, friends! I wasn’t sure if I was going to post this, since my nails are still too short for my liking and my cuticles refuse to look good, but what the heck? I’ve been a little bored with polish lately and just doing one color, so I tried to mix things up a little with this mani.

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So…I didn’t end up loving this look. The decals I used on my middle finger weren’t spaced properly enough (I hate that little part at my cuticle and the zig zag nearest my tip is too big compared to the others) and the dry brush I did on my pinkie didn’t turn out as cool as I would’ve liked, but I still really like this color combo.

4.20.16 Fancy Finger Guns curled under

The pink, Orly’s Risky Behavior, is more blue-toned/magenta in person, but it kept coming out very hot pink in my photos. It’s very vibrant and pretty, though! I saw it on sale for 97 cents at Ulta and couldn’t resist. The formula was great, too – two easy coats.

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I actually really love how my thumb turned out – I guess using a metallic as one of the brush strokes looks way better than using it as a base? I felt like the colors didn’t really pop on my pinkie, but it looks great on my thumb. Ah well, lesson learned!

4.20.16 Fancy Finger Guns thumb

Thanks for reading! See ya next time – A x

Neon Glittahhhhh

Last weekend, I was looking for a way to use Point Me To The Party that wasn’t over just white, and I think I hit on a pretty great solution!

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I’m pretty sure I got XOX Betsey because I saw it on Short ‘n’ Chic’s blog a few years ago. I was definitely NOT a neutral polish person then, but I believe it was on sale so I was willing to try it out for cheap. The formula is really great, especially for a light color – this was two super easy coats. I actually really like this polish – I’m not usually a fan of light pinks, but for some reason this pinky-nude is working for me!

After I added my old favorite Frisky (which I think might be fading a bit? Say it ain’t so!) on my pinkie as an accent nail and did alternating dots on my pointer and pinkie, I almost didn’t add Point Me To The Party on the rest of my nails because I thought it might clash. However, as soon as I applied it, I saw thankfully that the blue in PMTTP is very similar to Frisky, so everything looked good together!

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I’ve used PMTTP once before on this blog, last summer when I picked it up. It’s a very fun neon glitter topper comprised of translucent neon blue, green, purple, pink, and orange micro and hex glitter. I think China Glaze is the mainstream polish brand that’s done the best job of taking inspiration from indie polishes – this polish is clearly based on glitters like the famous Polish Me Silly‘s neon matte glitter confections, and it’s a really great effort! The glitter isn’t the easiest but also not the hardest I’ve ever dealt with – it was fairly easy to manipulate on the nail to get all the pieces where I wanted them. I was thrilled with how it looked over XOX Betsey – the whole reason I chose that color in the first place was to try to find another color to put PMTTP over that wasn’t stark white but still looked good (since the glitters are a bit translucent), and XOX Betsey worked perfectly, huzzah!

3.3.16 Fancy Finger Guns around bottle

I loved this mani so much that I kept it on for nearly a full week, and I got a ton of compliments on it. I love that it’s not a super in-your-face neon but still caught people’s attention. Thanks for reading, everyone! See ya next time – A x