September 2016 Favorites

September 2016 FavoritesUrban Decay All Nighter, $29-39 / MUJI 5 Drawer Acrylic, $35 / EcoTools Eye Enhancing Duo, $5 /
Hot Tools Titanium Digital Flat Iron, $60 / OPI Bubble Bath,$8

It’s October! I got my Halloween decorations up over the weekend. I went to Starbucks on Saturday around 10AM – when it was 65+ degrees in my area – and facepalmed at all the hot PSLs taking up the baristas’ time. Well, at least it’s legitimately seasonally appropriate, even if it isn’t weather-appropriate.

Note: My ribbing of PSL-drinkings is in good spirits – if you enjoy the drink, that’s awesome. I’ve got to say, though, give a flat white a try – they’re tasty. You can add your pumpkin spice goop to it, too, and I bet you’d like it at least as much.

Details on my September 2016 Favorites…

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Manicure Inspiration

Manicure Inspiration

These days, my manicures are solid colors. If I’m feeling crazy, I’ll have a different-colored accent nail. I just don’t bother with nail art or ultra-exciting manicures any longer (I don’t have time and/or it would be a bit much for work). That said, I do like to check out what others come up with. It isn’t all-art-all-the-time with the following posters – sometimes they just showcase interesting colors and, always, amazing manicures in general. There’s tons of manicure inspiration to be had out there!

Here are my favorites.

On Instagram

Glittr / I want to buy the vast majority of what she posts. There was this amazing holo purple recently called Lei Me Down from Cupcake Polish, and … I need it. In addition to ultra exciting, Glittr also posts manicures that I could pull off at work if ever I found the motivation.

In fact, I didn’t do this on purpose, but these sources are posted in order of how much manicure inspiration I get from them!

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Trim Portable Manicure System

Trim Portable Manicure SystemTrim Portable Manicure System, $8

I had something similar to this cheap, battery-operated electric file years ago. The motor ultimately burned out, and I hadn’t seen a replacement until I came across the Trim Portable Manicure System while out and about.. Admittedly, I didn’t give the tool much scrutiny in the store when I picked it up. For under $8 and running on non-included AA batteries, my expectations were low.

First Impression

Upon unboxing the tool I confirmed that its construction matched its price-point. The body is made of cheap, lightweight plastic. The handle is long (read: awkward to handle), and it doesn’t seem as though the bits have a locking mechanism to hold them in place. The battery compartment was easily accessible, but there aren’t any markers to indicate which way to insert them. I determined that negative should face the bottom of the compartment, positive towards the top.

No dial, switch, or series of buttons means no variable speed control. This little guy is a one-speed.

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TPDTY: You Need a Cuticle Stone

Cuticle StoneCuticle Stone, $1.79

There are a zillion-and-one guides and tutorials out there on how to give yourself a DIY manicure. Beyond the plethora of guides, there are probably thousands of different execution methods you could employ to achieve the same results. Damn few, however, mention taming crazy cuticles and eponychium with a cuticle stone.

It’s always, “gently push them back with an orangewood stick.” That isn’t wrong – it’s a good and gentle method that prevents you from removing living tissue. Those dang cuticle nippers that professional manicurists whip around like a magic wand are SHARP – and I don’t know about you, but they’re a challenge to use. It does not, however, help you remove any dead tissue that adheres to the nail plate like a cuticle stone can.

If you do your nails even semi-regularly, for under $2, can you really afford not to try one?

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Gelish 👎🏻

Since Christmas 2012, I have tried a ton of different gel polish brands. In the beginning, I was disappointed by the general lack of variety made available to consumers. Back then, Gelish seemed to have the best range (in my opinion) of colors. Naturally I bought a zillion, eagerly taking advantage of rare buy one, get one free – or the rarer still buy one, get TWO free.

Strike One: Get it Together, Gelish!

Gelish has a lovely pink called Go Girl. It was one of my first from them. It went on fairly well with only minor tip-shrinkage (requiring a flash cure; common, not a dealbreaker). Unfortunately, within just a few days, it faded. WTF?

As it turns out, this is common with several other shades, including It’s a Lilly.

To date, I have not experienced this with any other gel polish.

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