The Snowzilla Polarpocalypse Mani

Baby, it's cold outside! Since I live in Los Angeles, I'm blissfully unaffected by the POLAR VORTEX that's been pillaging the U.S. I do, however, have lots of friends and family who are dealing with The Polarpocalypse, and all the pictures of snow floating around the The Gram and FB have put me in the mood for a white mani.

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This was a very easy manicure to do. I began with two coats of OPI Alpine Snow (so aptly named) and let it dry. Once the polish was mostly set, I applied the Swarovski crystal stickers I'd been hoarding.

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What's cool about this product is that the sticker itself is completely clear, and it holds the crystals in place so you don't need to spend time painstakingly placing the gems on your nails. The other nice thing is that there's a little chart included to recommend which sticker goes with which nail. You could go rogue and pavé your own way (ha), but I stuck with their suggestion (hahaha).

Next, I put on a nice thick layer of Seche Vite, being sure to coat the edges on the stickers to make them better seal to my nails. Anything to avoid the dreaded "hair-catching" syndrome.

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This is a great manicure for a special event or party-filled weekend, but be warned: it's not very long-lasting. Despite my best efforts to seal the deal with Seche Vite, the stickers did begin to come off by Day 4 and by the end of Day 5, the polish was not looking so pretty. But it was fun while it lasted!

Even sad fluorescent lighting couldn't dull down this mani. Unfortunately, the jewels did begin to fall off. Note that I'm missing one on my ring finger.

snowin'ballistic, Francesca

P.S. Want MOAR white mani ideas? Check out these posts:

Funfetti Glitter Mani

Sparkling Snow Globe Manicure

The Trés Chic Upside-Down French Mani

Color Club — Harp On It

If you want to sport an attention-grabbing nail but don’t have the time (or skillz) to deal with complicated nail art, there are few better ways to get ooohs and aaahs than a holo.

There are a bunch of holographic shades on the market, but my favorite brand is Color Club. They’ve got a full range of linear holo colors, but I like to go for the tried-and-true silver holo. As I always say, why gild the lily? A classic silver that sparkles like a prism is just perfect.

Here's the full lineup of Color Club holos, 2013.

Scrangie's got THE best swatches of the entire collection. Click the pic to check out her post.

If you’re going to have but one holo in your Stash, my professional recommendation is Color Club Harp On It. The coverage is INSANE, the formula’s smooth as silk and the rainbow effect is oh, so pretty.

Think about it. This is *indoor* lighting and it gleams like this.

Holo nails make you feel like your nails are from The Future. A streamlined, metallic future where everyone dresses only in American Apparel lamé outfits.

But wait! Step it up a notch and do an accent nail inspired by the always clever NailedIt.

Nailed It created a beautiful holo 2D diamond; looks great with that powder blue. Click the pic to get the tutorial.

shineon, Francesca

P.S. Color Club Beyond is a great dupe for all of y’all out there who are still on the hunt for an OPI My Private Jet dupe. Just sayin’. :)

OPI — You're Such a Budapest & The Lights of Emerald City


OPI is pretty amazing. I can't claim that this is an actual fact... but I'm pretty sure that they release more colors per year than any other nail polish brand. Imagine their color archives! It's gotta be incredible. I picture an endless hallway of bottles placed on shining pillars protected by glass, like in a museum.

OPI recently released their Euro Centrale & OZ collections. I'll cover off on those in depth later, but for now I wanted to show you a pairing I fell in love with. It's perfect for spring!

You're Such a Budapest* stole my heart the moment I saw it. I love a good lavender to begin with — and YSAB is a little richer and deeper than the usual pastel purples. It hovers between purple and lavender and leans on the blue side. It's technically a creme, but has a hint of jelly to it. That element of translucency adds a delicate touch to this color.

You're Such a Budapest

I contemplated wearing YSAB solo... but then The Lights of Emerald City* were twinkling at me and I couldn't resist. TLOEC is fantastic. Tiny pieces of square metallic glitter sparkle green, peach, pink and gold, suspended in a clear base. Mixed among them are larger squares of pearl white glitter.

The Lights of Emerald City

TLOEC closeup!

I carefully applied TLOEC so that the white glitter pieces were concentrated toward the middle and tips of my nails, leaving the area near my cuticles clean. I was going for a slightly gradated look.

Here's some indirect sunlight for you.

This is how I was driving the whole time. Gotta check out the nailzzz, lol

These nails felt very My Little Pony, Pretty Pretty Princess-y, in the very best way possible. These are two new bottles that I am thrilled to have in my collection. :)

These nails just scream "Blossom" to me.

LOVED this game. Anyone ever heard of the lesser-known "Tales of the Crystals?"

xxo, Francesca

*product provided for honest review

Fingers Crossed — Jezebel's Cherry Blossom Nails

My gals at Jezebel posted one of their favorite nail polish colors for Spring, and I couldn't agree more. cherry blossom

madeline writes...

Here's a great swatch of Essie Go Ginza. I really encourage you to check out Beauty Junkies Unite; they've got swatches of the entire Essie Spring 2013 collection. I'm loving Bond With Whomever, too...


Oh, Essie. I have a soft spot for Essie mainly because:

  1. When I got my first professional manicure at the tender age of 14, my glamorous stepmother took me to a posh salon — in Darien, Connecticut, no less. Bouge to the bouge. It was at this salon that I encountered bottles of Essie for the first time. I liked the square bottles, I loved the logo embossed in glass along the side and...
  2. My childhood nickname was Chessie. Never Fran, and certainly not Frannie. Oftentimes Chess. So I liked to pretend that it was (Ch)essie nail polish. Still do.

But despite these legitimate and heartwarming reasons, I hate painting with Essie. Love the colors, love the logo, love the name... hate the brush. I absolutely hate it. So tiny, barely spreads... It's enough of a disappointment to steer me in the direction of a dupe whenever I can.

So if there are any readers who also hate the Essie brush, may I suggest OPI Lucky Lucky Lavender? You'll get a very similar color (albeit not exactly a dupe) that will go on much more smoothly.

Click the pic to check out Tabechan's nailtastic Flickr, "NailJuice"!

xxo, Francesca