Saturday, September 28, 2013

OPI Designer Series: Illuminate vs Classic

Happy Saturday everyone.  I first want to thank all of the new subscribers that have joined within the last few days, you rock!  I hope you're all having a better weekend than I am, we woke up this morning to little Gigi running a fever of 103.4.  Turns out the little lady has a virus, which you can't do much for, and has been spiking a fever every four hours.  It is definitely going to be a long night, but she is fast asleep for now and I wanted to take this time to show you all a comparison of two lovely OPI Designer Series that I got my hands on.

I was fortunate enough to get two very similar Designer Series polishes and couldn't help but notice how similar they are.  OPI DS Illuminate and Classic are bronze and golden holo's that are perfect for this time of year. I know that they have been out for a while but I still get excited when I see them. 

The first polish that I put on was Illuminate, which is a brownish-bronze scattered holo duochrome which shifts green.  It is hard to see the green in these pictures, but I promise it is there.

After wearing Illuminate I couldn't wait to try out Classic.  OPI DS Classic is lighter than Illuminate and has a golden tone to it.  It is also a scattered holo not linear, which I prefer sometimes.  This polish is a great neutral and I may actually leave it on for more than a day, which is saying a lot!

Both of these pretties were perfect to work with.  I applied two coats with each and a nice thick top coat of Essie Good To Go, I needed these babies to dry quick in case my girl woke up.  I didn't need to clean anything up, didn't have a problem with brush strokes or clumpiness and was able to build up the coats perfectly.
Just a reminder, there is still plenty of time to enter my giveaway if you haven't already.  I added an extra prize, so now there is a total of SIX bottles of polish going to one lucky winner!  Get those entries in and enjoy the rest of your weekend.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Literary Lacquers Strawberry Ice Cream Soma... Literally Gorgeous!

Hey, hey hey!!!  Well it's the weekend, finally, and that means tons of errands, running around, dance school, gymnastics, all that good stuff (can you sense the sarcasm?).  With all of this going on, at least I have a beautiful polish on my nails to stare at while I wait for Gigi to get out of ballet and tap.

Tonight I bring to you Literary Lacquers Strawberry Ice Cream Soma.  I received this polish in a swap and I am thrilled that I was able to get rid of a dust collector for this beautiful holo!!!  Strawberry Ice Cream Soma is one of six from the Literary Liquors collection, and in my opinion the most beautiful!  The creator of this beauty pulls her inspiration from books, hence the name Literary Lacquers, and this polish was created with the book Brave New World by Aldous Huxley in mind.  I must admit I have never heard of it, let alone read it, so no judging.

When I first applied this polish I noticed that it is a sort of jelly and crème mix.  The formula is perfect to work with, I didn't have a single complaint with the application.  I was pretty satisfied with two coats but decided to push it one more and use three, it built up perfectly!  Strawberry Ice Cream Soma is a warm pink linear holo that shifts to dark rose, almost purple at times and in the sun you get a total rainbow holo effect.

Here is two coats of Strawberry Ice Cream Soma.  Look at that beautiful sparkle and holo rainbow!
Three coats built up perfectly!  The formula isn't clumpy or thick so you can apply three coats easily.
I couldn't wait to capture this beauty in the sunlight!
I promise this is blurry on purpose! I wanted to show off how although this polish is a bright pink, it still has a warm effect to it.
This was my first experience with Literary Lacquers and I must say that I'm now a huge fan.  Sometimes, I feel like it can be hit or miss when trying a new indie brand, you never know if it is really as great as you hear or all hype.  This brand definitely can back up the hype, and I cannot wait to add more to my collection.  There are six beauties in the Literary Liquors collection and they can be purchased at the Literary Lacquers Etsy shop.  If you would like more information, including swatches, release dates and upcoming lines you can also become a fan at the Facebook page.
I hope you all have a great weekend and if you haven't entered my giveaway you still have plenty of time.  Don't miss out on this great prize package!!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

It's GIVEAWAY time!

Good evening guys! This post is baby free I promise :)  As you know my blog is relatively new, and as a thank you to all of you who come and read my rants, view my swatches and empathize with my mommy issues I think it is only fair I have my first giveaway!

This giveaway is really great! I will be making a goody bag for one lucky winner that consists of 6, yup SIX, bottles of polish! The prizes include one OPI, Essie, Sinful Colors Sinful Shine, China Glaze, Zoya and one indie brand! It's simple to get entries and the more you visit, the more you get!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Mommy's 5 Shades of Gray

Good evening!!!!  I am so sorry that this post is coming at such a late hour, Gia has been having a hard time going to sleep lately.  She has been throwing tantrums, screaming and crying, asking to come downstairs and paint nails with me.  As cute as that sounds, it's heartbreaking to listen to and harder to put my foot down and get her to sleep.  They don't lie when they call it the Terrible Two's!

Now, tonight I asked on Facebook what you would all like to see and the majority of you asked for my favorite shades of gray.  If you know me then you know I have a love of gray nail polish!  No matter if it is crème, matte, glitter, jelly, I just love gray nail polish.  I feel like it can be worn anytime of the year but it looks extra cozy and very sharp in the fall, if you ask me.

I have chosen my top five favorite gray nail polish and I made sure to include drug-store brand, main stream and indie for you all.  Having a beautiful gray polish shouldn't be limited to super expensive or hard to find brands, but there are a lot of grays out there that are pretty crumby too.  So lets get started with number five:

Maybelline Impeccable Greys is a very dark gray with a subtle bluish tone to it.  It can almost look navy or black in the right lighting, but it is a true gray.  I made sure to use three coats here because there was a bit of a transparency issue with it, not in a jelly type of way but just in a thinner formula way.  I think its absolutely beautiful and it had to make the top five!
Number four on my list is Nicole by OPI My Empire...My Rules.  This polish is a gray but it does have a brownish-green tint to it.  The formula is excellent and I love the way the color looks different indoors and then in sunlight.  Two coats was the perfect amount and I didn't have a single problem with the application.

Number three on the countdown is Essie Power Clutch, this one is an oldie but definitely a goodie!  It is a cool, neutral toned gray that can be worn any time of year.  The formula is almost a one coater but I played it safe and applied two.  I absolutely love how beautiful it looks and when I think of dark gray polish this is what comes to mind.
Number two is a new brand added to my collection this week, Chick Polish Gr8 Gray Owl.  When I was offered it in a swap I had to snag it because it is a brand I have been wanting to try.  This shade is a much cooler gray, I think due to the subtle light blue undertones in it, and a very creamy polish as well.  It too was almost a one coater but again I applied two just to make sure the application was nice and even.  I was very impressed with the formula and will be buying more Chick Polish in the future.
The moment you have all been scrolling for, my number one gray polish is... OPI French Quarter For Your Thoughts!!!  To me, this polish sums up all of the other great shades I have chosen.  It is a polish that can be viewed as a beautiful deep gray, or even as a neutral.  I feel it is a polish that is appropriate for all occasions and also any time of the year.  The formula was perfect to work with, not too thin or thick, no flooding, no clumping, there aren't any visible brush strokes and you have a perfect full creamy coverage with two coats.  There aren't any blue, green or brown undertones in this polish at all, it is entirely GRAY!
If you're able to get your hands on any of these definitely grab them, they'll be worth the money because you will get plenty of use out of them.  I think I like gray so much because it can be worn any time of the year, unlike a bright neon pink or dark brown, and it can be worn for any occasion and look stunning.
I hope you all enjoyed my top five shades of gray and thank you to those who chose this for tonight's blog post, I had a ball!

Monday, September 23, 2013

One of My New Favorite Indies! Ruby White Tips

Good evening everyone!!!  I know I haven't posted in about a week but the little princess has been keeping me on my toes.  We started dance and gymnastics this week, plus had our first sleepover party with my 3 year old niece, so it was a little hectic and I didn't have much time to swatch or review.  To make up for it I have a beauty for you....

I received my very first Ruby White Tips and I am now a loyal customer!  I know a lot of you are fans of the show Breaking Bad, but I have to admit I've never seen it.  I do however have one of the polishes from the Breaking Bad collection, Hell Yeah Science!  When I received the pretty bottle, with its beautiful rhinestones on the cap, I couldn't wait to tear it open and put the polish on.

Hell Yeah Science! is a beautiful pinky, rose, mauvish, light linear holo.  I will be honest and say that you have to be careful with your application because you will see some brush marks if you don't polish nice and slowly.  It is worth the effort though!  This polish looks beautiful in the sunlight, unfortunately the weather in Staten Island wasn't cooperating with me so I don't have pictures to show you, but trust me its just lovely!

The formula was very easy to work with, it didn't run, stain, flood and wasn't thick or clumpy.  I used two coats and it was more than enough for full coverage.  I received this polish in a swap but I will definitely be purchasing more!  If you would like to check out Ruby White Tips you can visit her Etsy Shop to view the entire collection.  

I hope you all have a great week and I'll be back soon with my favorite shade for the fall.


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Colors by Llarowe: Smooth Criminal and Vamp

Well it's Wednesday guys, we made it half way through the week so pat yourselves on the back!  It has been unbelievably hot here in NYC and trying to find things to entertain the baby with just keeps getting harder and harder the older she gets.  Enough mommy griping though and on to the polish!

I have two beauties lined up for tonight and I think you're all really going to love them!  I would say the majority of us know the Miss Leah Ann Larowe for her amazing Llarowe website with unbelievable and hard to find beauties.  We all also know that she has started her own line, Colors by Llarowe and tonight I will be showing you Smooth Criminal and Vamp.

I'm going to be perfectly honest and tell you that I kept some distance from the Llarowe Facebook page and shop after the whole Lynnderella drama that happened last year.  This was at no fault of Leah Ann's but the drama was just insane, the amount of nonsense that she deals with puts my patience to shame.  I found myself back at the Llarowe shop looking for Enchanted Polish and once again, the BS that some girls were causing was enough to make anyone go nutty.  I really give it to her, the complaints, the booty kissing thinking they're going to get something free, trying to be a new BFF, the crying, the whining, and with all of it she came out with some beautiful polish!

I found that the easiest time for me, personally, to shop on her site is when there isn't a huge restock going on.  Granted, you may have a harder time finding things in stock but trust me there are some great hidden gems on her page, not only when she is having a promotion or restock.  I have bought some awesome Emily De Molly's and A England polish, but I did get my two CbL's when she restocked her polish.

Smooth Criminal totally blew me away!  I love blue holo's and this one goes right up there as my fav next to A England Tristam.  This color is from her Tribute to Michael Jackson collection and she definitely honored him well.  It is a bluish purple holo and almost a one coater, the pigment is very deep but I decided to go with two coats and it was just perfect!

The next color I picked up was not from The Michael Jackson collection, Vamp stood out to me for its name and the vividness in the red pigment.  When I put it on I was expecting something a little darker due to the name but it is a deep red, almost crimson, linear holo.  I used three coats in my application but two coats would be just as beautiful. 

Both formulas were perfect to work with, I don't have one single complaint.  There weren't any streaks, brush marks, no flooding or cleanup needed.  The pigments are very deep and they can almost be one coaters, but two complete the job.  All in all, Leah Ann makes a beautiful product and I will definitely be buying more Colors by Llarowe when they become available.  If you would like to take a look for yourself just click Llarowe to visit her shop and for her Facebook page you can "like" her here.  Lets keep her page drama free, complaints to a minimum and just enjoy pretty polish!
Just think, the week is half over!  I hope you all have a great night and I'll be back soon with another beauty for you.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Essie Fall Collection Wrap Up

It's about that time!  Gigi has gone to sleep, the hubby has vanished up to the bedroom with the dog and Mommy gets some quiet time to polish and share with you all.

I know I said that I would take this whole week and devote each night to a different color in the Essie Fall collection but I have received so much great nail mail this week that I can't wait a few more days to try them out!  So tonight I am going to wrap up the collection and Millionails so I can move on to some pretty indies and other beauties I've gotten.

I want to start with Essie Millionails.  For the longest time I have been using Quimica Alemana Nail Hardener as my go-to treatment.  I love it, but it really does sting the nails at times and I decided it was time to try something different, so that's what brought me to Millionails.  The box states that Millionails will build strength and resist peeling and splitting for visibly stronger nails, big statement to make but it is true!  I have been using it for the last week as my base and have noticed how much stronger my nails are and they are growing much faster.  Between diapers, baths, dishes and laundry my nails can sometimes become very brittle and the edges snap right off, but I have not had a single chip in the last week!  If you have any sort of weakness issues with your nails I highly recommend Millionails, it also leaves a super shine to your nails if you're short on time and can't polish.
The next polish I want to show you all is For The Twill Of It.  When I saw the bottle I really thought it was a beauty and was super excited to try it, when I polished though I was very disappointed.  It is a multi-chrome polish that shifts silver, pink and blue but the big downfall to this polish is the brush marks and streaks.  If you are a true multi-chrome lover then definitely give it a try but beware, you will have to be very careful with your strokes.

Twin Sweater Set is a perfect crème red and can be your basic, go-to red polish if you don't already have one that you love.  There's nothing super special about it but it still is very pretty.  I used two coats and it went from a light red to a more crimson color with the second coat. I didn't have a single problem with the formula or application and with the first coat it almost seemed to have a jelly look to it but it is a true crème.
Vested Interested is a beautiful crème gray with a bit of a green or teal color to it.  The formula was a dream to work with!  No streaks, brush marks, not a single bit of flooding around my cuticles, I even didn't have to use my trusty clean up brush so that says a lot!  I love gray polish any time of year but I think this is a beautiful fall polish and can still be worn year round.

So to wrap up the Essie 2013 Fall collection I would definitely grab Cashmere Bathrobe, After School Boy Blazer and Vested Interest if you have the chance!  The others in the line are pretty, don't get me wrong, but in my opinion they're not ones to run out and buy right now.
Tomorrow I have two gaaaaawgeous holos to show you guys, I really just couldn't wait any longer.  Hopefully I have a quiet and somewhat normal day (what's that??) and wont be too exhausted to swatch.  I hope your week started off great and if your kids started school today that they had an awesome time.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Essie Cashmere Bathrobe Fall 2013

Happy Sunday everyone!!  I hope you all had a great weekend and for those of you who are in NYC too, how happy are you that the kids go back to school tomorrow?!  This weekend was just a bunch of mistakes made by me, you could totally tell I'm a first time mommy because an experienced one never would have done what I did.  Yesterday I told you guys that I went food shopping with my 2 1/2 year old at noon and then today I decided to troop it to Target with my daughter, mother, sister and niece.  We were looking for dance apparel for the girls because they'll be starting tap and ballet, but none of us realized it was the day before school starts and everyone would be getting their last minute supplies.  Another FAIL made by this first time mommy and another LESSON LEARNED!!!

One of the things that I got right this weekend was polishing with my absolute favorite color out of the Essie Fall collection, Cashmere Bathrobe!  This polish is absolutely gorgeous, it is a smoky, charcoal gray with smooth micro glitter throughout.  Another perfect formula here, there wasn't flooding, streaking or problems with the glitter.  Sometimes we buy polish that has a glitter to it in the bottle and when we apply it you can hardly see it, but that's not the case here.  This is two coats of this beauty and I think it is fall perfection. Take a look:

The camera picked up the glitter as best it could I guess but this gray is much more lovely in person!  I wasn't going to make you wait until the end of the week to see my MUST BUY out of the collection, and trust me the rest are definitely worth picking up if you're able to!
I hope you all have a great Monday, that your kids start a wonderful school year and I'll be here tomorrow night with another beauty from the fall collection once Gigi has gone to sleep and allows me to polish.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Essie After School Boy Blazer Fall 2013

Well the baby is bathed, powdered and in bed so you know what that means, TIME TO POLISH!!!!  Such a crazy day of cleaning and food shopping, which is a total mistake to do on a Saturday afternoon with a toddler... Lesson learned!!!

So on to more important things, today is Day 2 in my week devoted to Essie's Fall 2013 collection and I will be reviewing After School Boy Blazer.  This polish is my second favorite in the collection, don't worry soon I will let you know what my absolute FAV is.  It is a super dark navy, midnight, almost black, blue with a crazy shine to it.  When I first saw the shine on other swatches I thought it was a jelly for a second but nope, its a total crème with an insane shine to it!  The polish was pretty easy to work with, just some minor flooding around the cuticles but nothing a good angle brush couldn't pick up.  I used two coats here and it was just right!

Again, for this mani I used Essie Smooth Trick cuticle oil, Essie First Base base coat and Essie Good To Go top coat.  It may be a little OCD but I really think that using the same brand together makes a difference in my manicures, or I could just be telling myself that!

Tomorrow I'll be reviewing my favorite color out of the collection so make sure to pop in and see what craziness Gia has put me through during the day and what color I think is a MUST GET out of this collection!


Friday, September 6, 2013

Essie Fall 2013 Collection: The Lace is On

Hey guys!!!  Sorry this post is so late but I'll get to that in a minute.  I recently picked up the Essie Fall 2013 collection and Millionails so I thought I would devote this week to them! All seven days will be a review on each of the colors and my new favorite nail treatment (slight spoiler huh?). 

So tonight, as I usually do, I put the baby down and got myself all set up to polish.  I was having a hard time picking which color out of the collection to start with and I did what I normally do... Ask the hubby!  He picked what I think to be one of the prettiest colors in the collection, but what I keep hearing complaints about, The Lace Is On.  I had this polish ready to be photographed when my little one woke up and wanted to come help Mommy clean up, which was such a sweet thing for her to do until she accidentally smudged two of my nails... THE HORROR!!!  So these swatches are round two, but I didn't mind at all since I got to spend extra time with my girl.

Essie The Lace Is On is a beautiful, bright fuchsia shimmer with some small, smooth glitter throughout.  It was amazing to work with, twice mind you, not a single complaint with this formula and no flooding of the cuticles.  Sometimes the clean up with these bright colors can be a pain but not with The Lace Is On.  This color is so bright and I can't stop staring at my nails, the polish just POPS which I love since some fall colors can be a bit more muted.  The only downside to this polish is that it can have some slight streaking but nothing that a good top coat can't cover up.

Here is The Lace Is On with a flash.  You can see some of the subtle streaking, but really nothing noticeable in person.

 Here we have no flash and you still can see this vivid fuchsia shimmer

For my cuticle oil I used Essie Smooth Trick, for base I used Essie First Base and my top coat was Essie Good To Go. I like to use all of the same brands if possible because I feel they work best together but you can use whatever you like.

I definitely do not think that The Lace Is On should be overlooked when it comes to the fall collection.  I'll admit, when I looked at the rest of the collection and then saw it I was a little confused myself because it just didn't seem to fit in.  I'm glad I gave it a shot and maybe should give the hubby a bit more credit too when picking a polish.

I found the entire collection about a week ago at my local CVS drug store for between $8 and $9 each.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Sinful Colors Sinful Shine: More shine or just more bucks?

For my first review on here I thought it would only be right that I show you the polish that I just put on.  I was in Walgreens a few days ago and saw a small Sinful Colors Leather Luxe display and in the middle of it was this shiny capped bottle that I had never seen before.  I don't really care for matte polish so the pretty, shiny cap stole my attention.  Immediately I took out my phone and Googled Sinful Shine with Gel Tech and was pleased to read that this was a new collection that claims to have much more shine than regular Sinful polish.  I grabbed the only one that they had, Who's the Gloss, went home and put it with the rest of my stash in my kitchen cabinet (hubby hates it!). 

Tonight on my way home my husband texted me asking me to pick up paper towels, we're potty training our daughter so we've been going through them FAST, I decided to stop at another Walgreens that was on my way to see if there were any more of these shiny pretties.  I found a tiny display tucked away in a corner next to a huge Wet n' Wild display and was so happy!  A lot of the colors are very vibrant and more like summer colors, being that its September I'm getting into my fall polish and decided to pick up two of the darker, warmer colors.

The first polish that I tried is Tan Lines, which is a warm rose color that I absolutely love since I really dig neutral polish.  The formula was just as pleasant as other Sinful Colors polish, and actually this one is a perfect one coater.  I applied two coats, I think just out of habit, and was really amazed with the shine!  I still put a top coat on just to avoid chips and any damage or maybe again just out of habit, but the shine was definitely more noticeable. 

Here you can see Tan Lines taken with a flash.  It looks much more pink than it really is, it has more of a burnt rose look in person.

The following two pictures you can see what the color looks like without a flash.  I was unable to get an accurate outdoor shot since its after midnight here and that would be pretty pointless

Here is the sad little display that I had to search for.  I don't know if you can tell but it was tucked in the corner and hidden by a much larger display of Wet n' Wild polish.


I really feel that Sinful Colors doesn't get the credit that it truly deserves!  It is by far my favorite drug store polish and just about the only one that I will go out of my way to look for.  I mean honestly, when they have their $0.99 sale I literally go to 3 different Walgreens out here on Staten Island to see if I can get as many as possible.  Just to let you know, these are not $1.99 but $2.99 and I feel worth every dollar!  I wish they had more warm toned fall colors, maybe not a ton of blue polish either but I really shouldn't complain, I'm actually a little upset that I didn't pick up their basic black or white polish but I'm sure I'll make my way back there.


Hello and WELCOME to Mommy's Mani!  Just to give you a little background on me (I always like to know something personal about the bloggers I follow), I am 35 years old and happily married to my husband Chris.  We live in Staten Island, NY with our 2 1/2 year old daughter, Gia, and our huuuuuge ass dog Guinness.  When I was pregnant I stopped getting my nails done because I was told you cannot have acrylic and plus the smells in the salon were making me sick!  After I had my daughter my nails were a wreck and my sister told me about Julep, that was the beginning of the addiction!  I soon started buying polish and the stash just became bigger and bigger, before I knew it there were over 75 bottles of polish in my kitchen cabinet and I was becoming overwhelmed picking a color to wear (I'm sure you can all relate!).

So, after polishing my nails and posting pictures on Instagram and Facebook I kept hearing "Jen you need to start a blog".  At first I thought people were just trying to be nice because they liked my swatches, or because they felt bad for this stay-at-home mom who swatches polish every night haha, but more and more I kept hearing the same words and thought to myself WHY NOT?!  That's what brings me here...  I know most bloggers take beautiful pictures of the most recent, up and coming trends and collections and I'm sorry to tell you that the only up and coming trends I can keep track of relate to toddlers lol.  I swatch polish that I think is beautiful, whether its about to be released or its an oldie but goody, if its pretty then its going on my nails and I'm going to share it with you!

I hope you all enjoy my swatches, opinions and rants.  It will mostly be polish related but I'm sure life will fall in the mix from time to time.  Being a wife and mommy can do a number on your nails, from diapers to dishes my hands take a beating but I try to keep them as pretty as possible for me and for you guys!