Swatch: Illamasqua Scarab

2:00:00 PM mandy 4 Comments


I usually don't anything for Halloween in terms of dressing up. The most that I would do, if anything, is paint my nails a dark color to match the overall feel of the holiday. "Art of Darkness" seems fits the Halloween spirits perfectly no?
















When I got this polish from a giveaway I won a while back I thought it would be great for Halloween. The color was a little intimidating but it's a great addition to my polish collection. Personally if I was at the nail section of Sephora, this would probably be the last color I'd go for because of how dark and metallic red it is.


The Illamasqua website describes Scarab as a "deep ruby red, metallic finish" polish and that is exactly what it is.


Scarab alone (Artificial lighting + Flash)


Scarab with Essie Matte top coat (Artificial lighting + Flash)

Truth be told, I probably won't feel comfortable wearing this shade alone any other day than Halloween. (I'm not even going out anywhere in particular because of the transit shutdown after Hurricane Sandy.) But after practicing tape nail art a few more times, I think I could use this for the Christmas holiday some how...What do you think?

**I hope everyone that lives in/around the path that Hurricane/Tropical Storm Sandy hit is alright! Thankfully nothing big happened in my neighborhood. But from reading my Facebook updates and watching the news, a lot of places seemed to have flooded and/or lost power or in a much worse situation. It's still hard to believe that all this happened...Everyone stay safe!! >__<**

4 comments:

More Sally Hansen Polishes!

7:35:00 PM mandy 8 Comments

Ever since I tried Petrol, I've kind of been a little obsessed with this particular Sally Hansen line. When I saw that CVS was having a BOGO FREE for this line I made sure I went to check out what colors (if any) were left at CVS. I read the reason why these are being cleared from drugstore shelves is because the company is reformulating the line. I hope the new formula is at least going to be on par with the old formula. But I'll probably wait for a sale before I try the new formula version...heh!

Surprisingly, the selection at the CVS I usually go to was almost untouched (a big contrast to Walgreens). I guess compared to the Walgreens prices ($1.99) the CVS "sale" didn't look as appealing? Nonetheless I was excited to see all the choices available! In the end I decided to choose the colors below. (The fourth one I picked up is going toward the giveaway!)

I've been wanting to try a red polish and a black polish for a while now but never got it because those are colors I feel I wouldn't wear too often. Especially since I have always associated red polish as a more mature shade. But since these were on sale and I liked their formula enough, I didn't mind making the purchase.


Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Right Said Red, Red Zin, & Midnight in NY

However, I was not very happy with the tricky sales method CVS had though...(well at least the CVS I went to). I went into the store having read that this particular polish selection was BOGO FREE. After I chose the polishes I wanted to get, I went to their price scanner to just to make sure they were on sale. Lo and behold, the Midnight in NYC (the black polish) was the only one to come out as BOGO FREE...while the two red polishes were BOGO 50%.

I asked someone (who I'm assuming was the store manager) and was told in an annoyed tone that only certain colors were BOGO FREE and I'd have to check all the polish prices if I wanted that promotion. Afterwards I even checked their in-store circular to make sure what the actual sale was in case I read something wrong or the store had different terms than what was posted online...but that was not the case. The ad clearly said BOGO FREE for the Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure polish line and BOGO 50% for every other Sally Hansen line (excluding the Complete Salon Manicure polishes). In the end I bought the polishes anyways because one of the red polishes only had one bottle left (impulse much? hah).

I don't know about others but in a way I feel a little cheated...Or am I just overreacting and should just be happy that there was a sale in the first place?

Anyway!! Back to the polishes.


One layer of each polish.
Since they're all a jelly like formula they can be a bit on the translucent side if applied a certain way (like how the black color shown above is a bit patchy). I'd recommend not to fix the first layer when wet. Just to wait for it to dry and then touch up with a light second coat instead.

I'm still warming up to Right Said Red, the fire-engine red on my pinky, but it is a really pretty color!

Red Zin is a gorgeous blood red shade. Especially because of its jelly consistency it looks as close as a nail polish can get to real blood, don't you agree? I never thought I'd ever buy this color because it seems difficult to pull off...but I ended up liking this shade the most of the three.

Midnight in NY looked like a really nice black with micro shimmers which kind of emulated stars in the sky (hence the name), but sadly it didn't translate very well onto my nails. Instead it was ended up looking like a normal jelly black polish. In certain angles you can see the micro shimmers but is close to being microscopic. I guess in a way it is an accurate depiction of the sky in NY since it is pretty difficult to see stars in the city. Maybe I'll grow to like this polish the more I wear it?


Two layers of each polish
Sorry for the blurry photo! I'm not use to taking photos with my left hand. It was surpisingly much harder to handle a DSLR and control focus with my left hand than I thought...

Since I didn't feel like taking off the polish I just decided to practice the tape nail art method on my pointer and thumb. These came out much better than the last attempt! (Yes I do have different designs and colors on my left and right hand. I didn't think I'd be able to wear these out comfortably and confidently but I've been sporting these for 2 days already!)


8 comments:

Fail Attempt at Nail Art

10:30:00 AM mandy 5 Comments

I really should be studying and writing a paper that is due on Monday...but I was so distracted with the idea of trying a nail art technique I saw on Pinterest with the polishes I just bought. Of course the logical option was to just get rid of this itch and be able to concentrate better at what I needed to get done, don't you agree?

The basic idea of the technique is to cut strips of tape and place them however you want on your nails, paint a layer of polish over it, and slowly peel off the pieces of tape.
In addition to a base and top coat, I used 2 layers of Revlon Calla Lily & 1 layer of Sally Hansen Petrol.
Obviously...I didn't get very good results on my very first attempt. There are lines that look pretty good, but for some reason (I have yet to figure out why) certain lines just didn't come out as clean as others. Maybe the culprit was putting too much nailpolish? Or perhaps I didn't let it dry enough...or was it too dry? Anyone have any ideas?
A definite tip I can share so far for this tape design method: Be careful when you apply your top coat!
Especially if you have one that tends to pick up/move around the nailpolish. Use a thicker coat and don't skimp! Or else the top coat will move the top most layer of polish around and cause bleeding/smearing of colors and you won't have nice define lines anymore. (But of course this could just be the OCD perfectionist in me talking...hah)

When I have a little more time I will definitely try this again though. It takes more time, patience, and effort than just applying a single polish color but I love the way it turns out! Maybe after a couple of tries I'll be able to master it and share more tips of how to do this design.

5 comments:

Drugstore Hauling

10:00:00 AM mandy 6 Comments

I haven't share one of these hauls in a while! Mostly because I've been spending a lot more on clothes the last couple of months and not as much on beauty items. But! I think I got pretty good deals at the drugstores this time. Well...much better results than from my normal couponing efforts.
After seeing that CVS had a BOGO50% for their Olay products and getting a couple of ExtraBucks to use, I decided to repurchase this moisturizer for the upcoming cooler weather. I was hesitant about getting two bottles of lotion but I definitely couldn't give this deal up when I scanned my CVS card and got even more ExtraBucks to use ($5 to be exact). In the end, I bought two and paid just the price of one!

Nouveau Cheap had posted about an awesome clearance of the Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure nailpolishes at Walgreens so I wanted to see if I would have some luck at my local branch. Needless to say...those displays were stripped bare!

Revlon in Buttercup, Revlon in Calla Lily, Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Petrol
I perused the store and found these in the clearance bins, which I don't normally pay much attention to (more like I don't ever see them). Each of these were $3. Then with the 15% off I received in the email for their Friends&Family sale...they ended up being only $2.55 each! There weren't that many choices in the clearance bins but these really stood out to me. I think I'm very lucky to have found the Sally Hansen polish in there! After googling this particular shade, I found out that it's apparently from the Sally Hansen & Alexander Wang collab collection. How cool is that!


One layer of the polishes: Calla Lily, Buttercup, Petrol
I was quite surprised by all three. Some good feelings, others bad.
The left two didn't quite meet my polish wants. Both are pretty sheer (on my defense I thought that Calla Lily would be more polish-like and less a shimmery topper). Buttercup was exceptionally streaky. I think it is because of how thin the polish consistency is. Definitely a 2+ coater. It doesn't look too bad in the photo but in reality it looked much worse.
Sally Hansen was the complete opposite. Opague. One coater. Thick but not too gloppy (as of now). Dries fast. One word...UHHmmazing! Now I'm sad I didn't find out about this line earlier (before the big Walgreens markdown). I guess I could either track other Walgreens stores or wait for it to go on sale at other drugstore chains...


Two layers
Buttercup looks much better in this shot but I did make sure to put a thicker coat of it on the second time around. The problem then was the two layers took forever for to dry...*sigh*
Petrol didn't need a second coat at all but just for the heck of it I applied it anyways. With one layer it was already a pretty dark navy. The additional layer makes it looks almost black.

Are the polishes in the Revlon Colorstay polish line all similar to this particular shade?
& Was anyone able to get some of the Sally Hansen polishes?

6 comments:

September Happenings

10:20:00 PM mandy 6 Comments

This month went by really quickly! I forgot that school does that to a person's perception of time...Especially with all the days off we had at the school I go to, I hardly felt like I've been attending classes for a whole month already. I didn't get to do many things other than go to school, eat, and shop some. Doesn't sound exciting enough to share right? But nonetheless, there were some highlights of my month!


I didn't get to post on the actual date but Happy Belated Mid-Autumn Festival! (This sounds a little weird to me because the official start of fall was only like a week ago...hah.) For this year I didn't eat the traditional mooncakes. I was finally able to try the snow-skin mooncakes. This one, in particular, was a taro one. I must say...it was yummy. Of course, it's a plus that the mooncake was purple!


The most exciting event of my September!!!!! This one deserves all the exclamation points it can get!!!
I have been anticipating this concert since they announced Big Bang will have one way back in...the summer. I didn't think I'd actually be able to go but when my friend said she was interested as well I definitely wanted to get my butt there in November. She was able to get not 1 but 2 of the highly sought after VIP tickets. I was so surprised...I checked the ticket listings for fun a few minutes after they were released and they were virtually non-existent. Despite the high ticket price, I am stoked! I can't wait for this concert.

The rare chance that my nails are actually strong enough for me to paint them! Nothing too flashy, but a nice transition going into fall no?

I also shopped more than I would like to admit this month. This is just a photo of one of my hauls...Scary! I've been putting a lot more effort into dressing "up" for school nowadays. Definitely trying to get out of the jeans and hoodies rut I was in for the longest time...


I haven't browsed the Macy's selection of clothes in a LONG time. I went the other day with my mother and I was immediately drawn to this burgundy Tommy Hilfiger button down. My mom, on the other hand, did not like it at all. But that didn't stop me from at least trying it. I LOVED the way it looked. It had a slight hi-low and when I tucked the front in, it didn't show my muffin top like most other shirts do *sigh* The only thing that stopped me from getting it was its price. I scanned the top and it came out to be $55.xx...WHY SO PRICEY?! I must wait for this to go on sale!

Do you guys think my gym gear is breaking too many fashion rules (if any)? Or does that not matter when you go to the gym? I haven't been worked out in a while so I made it a point to get myself there the other day. I don't know what made me get on the treadmill when I usually just go on the cross-ramp but it felt nice (at the time). My legs couldn't even bend without hurting for the next few days...

The only other interesting thing I did was eat.

Poutine @ Pommes Frites

I'm not sure how poutine in Canada tastes, but I think this is the closest we can get in NYC? I loved how crunchy the fries were. But I just wished the cheese curds was a little more melted/stringy.


Takoyaki @ Otafuku

A little hole-in-the-wall shop on a side street at St.Marks. I love their takoyaki! Surprisingly, of the three times I've bought from them this was the only time I've eaten it fresh and hot. It was good...The only complaint I have was I wish mine were a bit crispier on the outside. But that could have been a timing problem because I didn't want to burn myself eating the takoyaki right away...heh.


Chocolate Swirl Bread & Macarons @ Panya Bakery

I gotta say I loved both of these. Especially the bread. It wasn't overly sweet but definitely not as plain as white toast. Not something I'd indulge in often but definitely something I'd get again. I love that you can ask them to cut the loaf of bread there. They have a thick toast option! LOVE~


Sunrise (Mango & Strawberry White Tea) with Aloe Jelly @ Yaya Tea Garden

I've tried a couple syrupy teas and I think they just aren't for me...They all taste too sweet for my liking. I wonder if I could ask for less of the syrup the next time I go (whenever that is). But I do appreciate the different types of jellies they had available!


Variety of sushi rolls @ Wasabi

Since I don't eat raw fish, I always end up getting a plate full of not so healthy but very delicious sushi with something fried in it instead. Not complaining though! I love me some sushi!


Homemade Herbal Jelly (not made by me)

I've been eating this all of August and September. At first, we just bought the stuff from the store but my mom decided to try making it herself. It wasn't too bad, although some batches were more jelly like than others. I love to eat this with agave nectar instead of liquid sugar. Apparently, ABCs aren't a big fan of this? I guess I'm the exception...I love this stuff!


I wish I could be as carefree as this guy (at least it seems he is). The next coming months at school will be stressful. Not just because of the workload. Mainly because it's my first semester as a sophomore and I really still have no burning definite decision for my major yet. AHH! Was anyone else in this situation or am I just really terrible for not having a goal in life...still...?

6 comments: