Nailing Throwback Thursday

by Jackie

Gave myself a flawless manicure in 10 minutes.

Gave myself a flawless manicure in 10 minutes.

You know that feeling. Your nails look like you’ve been landscaping all day, but you don’t have the time to get to the spa or wait for a base coat, two color coats, and a top coat to dry (even quick dry top coats take time because you have to wait for the the other coats to dry before you apply it. Let me quote the prolific Sweet Brown, “Ain’t nobody got time for that!”).

I was making a mad dash to bed the other night because I had a big day ahead of me that started at 5:00 a.m. I knew if I tried to give myself a full mani, that I’d end up smudging all of my nails in my sheets.  What’s a girl to do?! Sitting in my mani box was the answer, a package of press-on nails that I got from ImPRESS Press-On Manicure by Broadway Nails some months earlier in NYC. I know what you’re thinking: “Press-on nails? That’s so 1992.” I promise you, these look better and feel sturdier than the ones I used to play dress-up with as a little beauty queen wannabe. So far, I like them better than nail stickers because they don’t bubble and the application was quick and easy — prep, peel, stick. Voila!

I think this will be my summer mani go-to. I’ll spend the time I would have spent on my nails at the pool. Oh, and it’s only about $6, so it definitely beats a pricey salon visit.

This color is perfect for whenever it decides to stop snowing.

This color is perfect for whenever it decides to stop snowing.

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Merry Mani

by Jackie

Crystal's nails polished in Vodka and Caviar by OPI.

I love to paint my nails red for the holidays, but it wasn’t until this year that I found the perfect red.

My girlfriends and I hit the nail spa on a recent trip to Massachusetts and Connecticut. I borrowed my BFF’s Vodka and Caviar from OPI. I love it because it is striking and soft, and not too vampy. It’s the prettiest red I’ve ever come across.

All dolled up for a night on the town!

Where the Wild Things Are: Press-On Polish

by Jackie 

I’ve been traveling a lot lately and have had no time to paint my own nails or make a salon run for a mani. Knowing how much I HATE to wear my nails bare, nail aficionado Keren came to the rescue with Sally Hansen Nail Effects strips during an impromptu girls’ getaway. I took her up on her offer to apply them for me and in about ten minutes I had the look of a fresh manicure.

My roomie Jenn also got an instant mani with some H&M press-on polish strips. (I know, I couldn’t believe it, either. H&M!) As you can see, we went for a fun animal theme.

Ready to take on the world!

Blasted Pieces: Review of the Shatter Collection by OPI

Guest post by Christina Ventura

Christina is a graduate of Georgetown University and works for Mayor Bloomberg's Office in New York City. She also plans to serve as a volunteer with the Peace Corps. A*cute is happy to have her as a guest blogger. Click her name to find previous reviews written by Christina.

Shatter Collection by OPI

I admit I was a little reluctant to try Shatter by OPI a few months ago but summer opens up the way for lots of creative, funky, and fun things. I obsessively buy nail polish and I’ve been waiting for summer to break them out. I was looking for a cool way to spice up my collection when I saw Sephora was unveiling Katy Perry’s Black Shatter. Anyone who knows me can attest to the fact that I never get designs or embellishments on my nails but I couldn’t pass this up!

Step 1: If you don’t know how Shatter or Blasted works (I didn’t!), you apply a base color of your choice how you normally would. I suggest something bright and eye-catching! Blasted Black doesn’t contrast well with darker colors.  Let your base polish dry for about 10 minutes before moving on.

Step 2: Next, apply Blasted on top of your color. The less polish and the streakier, the more “blasted” it will look. Applying too much will yield one, maybe two, “cracks” on your base coat of color.  Let Blasted dry for about 5 minutes before moving on.

Step 3: If you want a matte look, then you’re done! If you want some shine, apply a clear top coat of your choice. I suggest Out the Door. It’s quick-drying and super shiny. It’s my go-to top coat when I’m in a rush or just don’t want to wait forever (that’s how long you will be waiting after a total of 4 coats of nail polish).

If Blasted Black is a bit too radical for your weekday look, try Blasted Gold or Blasted Silver as a subtle variation.

Sephora by OPI (Sephora, $9.50)

For this experiment, I used Blue 1 by Urban Outfitters, Lapis of Luxury by Essie, Coral Cascade by Color Club, Green 13 by Urban Outfitters, and Emmi & Olli Go Bananas by Brucci.

Multi-color look

One color: Emmi & Olli Go Bananas by Brucci

Inexpensive doesn’t mean Inferior

by Sherria

PURE ICE Nail Polish (Walmart, $2)

Before I started learning the difference between a “high-end” nail polish and a “cheap” nail polish, I would grab any color I liked from the counter at the beauty supply store. Sometimes it would take about four coats of polish in order for the pigment to show up the way I expected. When I got a little bit older, I started wearing my mom’s Revlon brands. But, to me, those colors catered to older people. As matte polish became more popular, my friends and I started wearing OPI and China Glaze. One day I couldn’t find a name brand matte polish in gray so I took a trip to Walmart to see what I could find. And, what did I find?  That’s right! Gray nail polish. I only had to put on two coats, just like the name brand polishes. I found the polish in the PURE ICE brand. I started to notice that Pure Ice had a variety of colors I wanted. Now, it’s one of my favorite nail polish brands and it’s only $2.  So, to all of you nail polish connoisseurs, inexpensive nail polish doesn’t always mean that it’s inferior to high-end brands. The Pure Ice is made by Bari Cosmetics, Ltd, but can be found at your local Walmart.

This week’s manicure:

PURE ICE color “Free Spirit”