Holographic Glitter Gel Nails (aka Rockstar Nails)

This legacy post was one of my favorites to do. I’ve given it a bit of a facelift for flow and clarity, but the content remains the same! I shared these easy-to-reproduce glitter gel nails before the holo and chrome crazes took root – so take that, trends!

Glitter gel nails, also referred to as rockstar nails, is a glitter-dense style is used both for accent nails as well as full manicures. This form of nail art is commonly considered a premium service (and is, therefore, more costly!) at salons, but glitter gel nails are easy and (to my surprise) fast. If you are so inclined, you can wear them all the time with minimal effort.

glittergel_11Glitter Gel Nails

If you’d like to learn how to achieve these glitter gel nails / rockstar nails, continue past the jump for details and a tutorial!

Read moreHolographic Glitter Gel Nails (aka Rockstar Nails)

A Bit Shady: OPI Swatches

Nail polish was my first (beauty) love. Even though my nail polish wardrobe is smaller these days I’m lame, I still feel a rush of completely ridiculous excitement when I spot a majestic shade. (Zoya Dream, can you stop haunting me? Thanks.) OPI makes my longest-loved (still manufactured) shade, I’m Not Really a Waitress. I don’t really wear it year-round anymore, but it is pretty much the only thing on my nails from Thanksgiving through Christmas. It makes guest appearances throughout the year as the mood strikes. It was on one such mission to plan repurchase and admire swatches of this polish that I noticed that OPI swatches are inaccurate, computer-generated garbage.

OPI Swatches aren’t Swatches

Not in that they’re low-quality, shoddy lighting, on ugly nails. No – OPI swatches are flat-out digitally whipped up lies. Not retouched, nay; a fabrication in their entirety.

My beloved, beautifully swatched by Elegantnails.com:

Then, the ridiculous embarrassment provided by OPI themselves:

Read moreA Bit Shady: OPI Swatches

Sensationail Express Gel Application & Wear

Sensationail Express Gel

A few months ago, a commenter asked if I had tried Sensationail Express Gel ($6) At the time, I had not yet heard of the product and was left baffled.

About Express Gel

Express Gel, which first launched in the UK, seems similar in concept to their ill-received Fuse product. Sensationail Express Gel claims to be a base coat and top coat free product featuring no cleansing. It supposedly requires less application effort than China Glaze’s Gelaze product.

Sensationail Express Gel may be cured with their old or new LED lamp and cure times are similar to their classic product. Cure times may vary slightly from color to color, so be sure to check the packaging. Sensationail suggests that darker colors may take longer to cure.

Getting my Hands on Sensationail Express Gel

Read moreSensationail Express Gel Application & Wear

Discontinued Products I Miss vol. 2

I’ve written about the list of products that have been sent to the metaphorical glue factory, and since then, the list has only grown.

DIY Hair Gloss Supplies

RIP My Preferred DIY Hair Glaze Products

The Clairol Radiance line carried at Sally’s has been discontinued, and I only found out days ago thanks to a comment from a reader. I have to find a new method to execute my DIY hair glossing treatment! I aim to have a new regimen established by December. I’d tackle this sooner, but I’m getting my balayage touched up in a few weeks and its fairly pointless to mess with it when my hair is in tip-top shape.

Discontinued Products I Miss - St Ives Whipped Silk Lotion

The Best Drugstore Lotion, Ever

This isn’t a new or recent discontinuation, I just found myself wishing it was still made. St Ives Whipped Silk body lotion was cheap, moisturizing, lightweight, lightly scented, and all-around awesome. Unfortunately, they discontinued it in the US in favor of what is, as far as I can tell, a bunch of heavily fragranced, sticky trash.

Also, RIP the Aroma Steam body washes. Those things were amazing too, dang it!

More Discontinued Products I Miss after the jump.

Read moreDiscontinued Products I Miss vol. 2

Steam of Consciousness & Chatter

Earlier this week, I received a digital copy of my ClinCheck treatment review. I’m beyond excited about it, and even though I’m fairly self-conscious about my teeth, I shared it on Instagram. How millennial of me.

A post shared by Beauty Skeptic (@beautyskeptic) on



Each stage is a new tray!

Tomorrow, I have an extraction. Tuesday, I get my first Invisalign aligner trays. To celebrate that, let’s take a brief break from my usual, structured content.

Every now and then we all have a thought we want to share for the amusement of others or to get their opinions. I tend to experience them in bursts, but since my husband obviously has no interest in beauty-related-anything, I don’t commonly have an outlet. Sometimes I take to Twitter when it occurs to me, but I’m just not engaging enough on Twitter, ha.

In no particular order…


Ever apply a self-tanner with a color guide or instant bronzing effect and wonder, “Who the hell did they met that this shade would be flattering on, ever?”

Seriously. It wasn’t orange, it wasn’t bronze, it wasn’t brown – it was the least-possibly-flattering mix of all three with just a touch of green thrown in. I am pretty sure humans just don’t come in this color. Prodigious.

I was applying a gradual sunless tanner that also had an instant effect and this occurred to me while I was smearing it unattractively all over my face. My husband looked on in horror. “Don’t worry, it comes off,” I explained. Horror turned to confusion. “…it stimulates melanin production, so what you see now is basically just dye.”

Afterwards, the natural coloring that develops is pretty nice. But maybe don’t go out in public with Tanwise Self-Tanning Face Gel on your face.


I really enjoy having painted nails. After executing a manicure, I sat there, supplies before me, pouting. Why? Because it was 8:30PM and I just spent 20 minutes and still had about hour to go if I wanted flawless polish. The world is cruel.

You know who didn’t have to wait for painted nails?

Sailor Moon.

I called it a night, finished drafting posts and went to bed with naked nails.

#moonprismpower


…But like why invest in product development and R&D when you can throw lavish influencer party-vacations with luxury presents that aren’t even affiliated with the brand? Or, remarkably, invest in ways to slightly lower cost (and price to boost popularity WITHOUT sacrificing handsome profit margins)?

Just sayin’.

#exclusivityiskey


A girlfriend of mine with badass hair tried Overtone conditioner to help revive her hair since she got screwed over for her next color appointment. The regular conditioner made her color-treated hair soft and punched a little more life into it after one use. She expects that the Weekly Deep Treatment will do more for her, though.

This first picture is her fresh from the salon…

 

…and this second one is eight weeks later with Overtone. It’s no secret how difficult it is to maintain red, so these are great results!

My silver-haired girlfriend (yes, she’s still rocking the silver!) will be pleased to know that 1) it works and 2) it is both cruelty-free and vegan.

As for me, I’m shocked and entertained that it isn’t only intended for maintenance. Their photos suggest that you can color with it, check it out:

I’m not up for Exciting Hair at this point in my life (in fact, I have another balayage appointment soon – I’m such an exciting human) but I really enjoy watching the transformations. Out of curiosity, I’m going to look into real-life attempts; I think it would be interesting to see if it can live up to its claims.


Here’s to an undoubtedly lame weekend with gauze in my mouth and the first uncomfortable step to a straighter smile. I will be changing gauze, eating applesauce and mashed potatoes, pouting, taking ibuprofen, folding laundry, and writing this weekend – what are your plans?