Monday, September 19, 2011

My New Nail Polish Storage

After showing you my recent nail polish haul in my last post, some of you asked me how I keep my collection organized. I thought this is the perfect time to address that question, because I have just switched to a new nail polish organizer last week!

If you remember my introduction post to my "Nail Polishes of the Month" project, where I try to swatch all the nail polishes I've been wearing for that entire month (no repeats), as a way of attempting to swatch every single one of my nail polishes in my collection in the end. I used to use a plastic Sterilite cart. Each drawer was tall enough to put in two layers of nail polishes standing up. I took those pictures (1, 2) at the beginning of 2011, now that I look back, I am amazed at how my collection has grew over the past few months!
As my Sterilite cart got full, it has become very difficult to find a specific color I need, especially since in order to find a nail polish at the bottom layer, I have to lift the top layer completely off. So today, I introduce you to my newest nail polish storage, the Helmer from IKEA.

I read about the Helmer drawer unit from various nail blogs and girls there have said that it was the perfect size and height for storing nail polishes. I also needed to look for something that will fit under my vanity table, and the Helmer was PERFECT!

Installing the Helmer wasn't a piece of cake, as all the parts were metal and required a ton of fiddling, but thank goodness my hubby was nice enough to help! The Helmer has 6 drawers, each drawer was plenty of space to hold about 50-70 nail polish bottles, depending on the brand. I decided to organize my nail polishes by colors, so that it'll be easier for me to pick out a nail polish at a glance. I also intentionally left a little space on the top and bottom drawer for "future expansions" :p I love that I can centralize all my manicure/pedicure supplies at once place, Konad plates, nail treatments, cleaning supplies, nail arts, etc, and have everything organized. Home Depot Promo Codes if you're looking for more storage options in your home!


What do you use to store your nail polish? I'd love to take a peak! :)

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Colorful Polishes

Today I organized my blog pictures folder and decided to gather up some of the nail polish hauls I've been documenting for the past year or so (fall/winter of 2010 till now) and showcase them in one post. These nail polishes were from many different shopping trips/online purchases. I am still slowly attempting to try out all the polishes in my collection at least once and document all the swatches through the Nail Polishes of the Month posts. Let me know if you spot any shades that you are interested in seeing swatches first.

I love looking at nail polishes, they are so colorful and puts me in a happy mood. It's amazing how many different shades of pinks, blues, reds different nail polishes have, and they each have different finishes, some are glittery, some are shimmery, some are matte, some are creamy...the list goes on and on. Nail polishes also have the most clever names, some are really cute, some are really funny, and some have significant meanings to the owner. Are you also a nail polish addict like me? Enjoy! In case you are like me and you're looking to save some money on nail polish, look at these coupons for Macys!












Sunday, September 11, 2011

♥ August Favorites ♥


♥ Benefit Hoola Bronzing Powder
This is an old favorite, and I found myself to be using it a lot this past month. It is a brown matte shade that I find to be a great contour shade for me -- it doesn't have much orange so no it doesn't make my face look muddy. If you are interested in trying Hoola, I found a really great deal on Sephora right now that lets you sample several of Benefit's great products.

♥ MAC NW25/NC30 Chromographic Pencil
This is a multi-use pencil that could be used as a spot concealer, brow/cupid's bow highlighter, eyeliner, etc. I chose the darker shades of the two, which doesn't really match my skin as a concealer so I rarely used it for that purpose, even though it was my original intent for buying the product because I thought it would be a very easy to carry, precise spot concealer. However recently I have been using it to highlight the inner corners of my eyes and also have been putting it on my waterlines -- it doesn't look as harsh as a white eyeliner yet still gives you that bigger/more awake eyed look.

♥ CoverBlend Multi-Function Concealer SPF 15
Also an old favorite of mine, I like it so much that I wanted to conserve it so once in a while I put it away and use other concealers instead. It is really good for covering up my dark circles and doesn't crease, it also provides very good coverage as a concealer for my face, and is so long lasting and transfer free. It also blends in very easily and isn't drying at all. Before I use this up, I will definitely need to buy a backup!

♥ Estee Lauder MagnaScopic Maximum Volume Mascara
Being a big fan of Kiss Me Heroine mascaras, I always have a tube open and use it all the time -- it's perfect in every way except how difficult it is to remove. Sometimes I just don't feel like putting on Kiss Me and go through the cumbersome procedure of removing my mascara at the end of the day -- and on those lazy days I use a non-water proof mascara. Right now I'm trying the Estee Lauder MagnaScopic mascara. I like it so far, it seperates and lifts and no major clumping issue.

♥ Huge Lips Skinny Hips lip gloss in Lychee Martini
The formula is very sheer and not sticky at all, yet it gives my lips enough moisture and shine that is still office appropriate. It is a lip plumper so expect a slight tingling, but it's not nearly as bad as some others I've tried.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Review: Dermelect Nail Recovery System

Being a nail polish addict means that I change nail polish more frequently than I probably should have, and I also should have probably given my nails more breaks in between nail polish change to let them breathe and recover, but I was just always too anxious to brush on the next newest shade in my stash. As a result, my nails often have that hideous yellow tint when I don't wear polish to cover it up. I also unfortunately have naturally thin, brittle nails that peel and break off so easily, which makes them so hard to grow long. I've tried all sorts of nail strengthening coat, nail thickener, magical potion that claims to make nails grow fast, Biotin...you name it...I am constantly on the look out for the next best aid to my nail problems. This issue became an even greater problem this past week because I have gotten gel nails done recently for a wedding, and my nails suffered greatly from the procedure -- thin, soft, peely, and uneven.
The sad states of my poor nails.

Soft Surroundings came to the rescue and sent me a set of Dermelect Nail Recovery System to try out.
It is a nail regimen that contains ProSina Keratin Peptide and Pentavitin Moisture Magnet. While I can't say that I know exactly what these words mean, the product description gave me exactly what I am looking for (click to enlarge):
Perfect for hard to grow, thin, weak, brittle, chipping, splitting, discolored, uneven and contain grooves and ridges, acrylic damaged nails. Hello!!! I think Dermelect is calling out MY name!

The Dermelect system comes with 4 full sized products:
· Launchpad Nail Strengthener, an anti-aging base coat delivering protein peptides to the nails restoring strength and flexibility.
· Makeover Ridge Filler, a natural pink hue that cleverly conceals while treating unsightly nail ridges and discoloration.
· High Maintenance Instant Nail Thickener increases nail thickness up to 50% with a single coat, extending the life of your manicure. Also utilizes a UV absorber to prevent polish colors from fading and yellowing.
· Rejuvenail Fortifying Nail & Cuticle Treatment the first anti-aging nail cream using peptides, hyaluronic-acid, shea butter and vitamins to restore moisture and nutrients.

The product I was most excited about is the cuticle cream. I have just recently learned the importance of cuticle cream and after religiously applying cuticle creams to my nails daily for the past few weeks, I was amazed at what a difference it made. The only issue I have with most cuticle creams are how greasy they feel, so I only would apply them at night before I sleep, otherwise I will make everything I touch greasy.
When I tried out the Dermelect Rejuvenail Fortifying Nail & Cuticle Treatment, I was pleasantly surprised to find out how easy it was for this to absorb into my cuticles and it didn't even feel greasy at all. It comes in a very decently sized 1 oz. plastic jar, with a thick cream consistency. Once applied, it has a faint floral scent, but not overwelming at all. It really makes my nails and cuticles look fresh and healthy instantly. I give this a big thumbs up and will continue to use this every day!
My nail with Makeup Ridge Filler and the cuticle cream -- what a difference it makes!

Dermelect Makeover Anti-aging Ridge Filler comes in a 0.4 fl oz glass bottle with a brush just like a bottle of nail polish. It has a slight pale pink color and contains fine shimmer. It acts as both a concealer to hide the yellow tint on the nails, and to make the nail surface smooth for nail polish application later. Think of it as a nail polish primer, and it worked very well as one! The ridges I have on my nails were smoothed out once a thin layer of this product was applied and dried. The pink hue makes my nails look brightened and healthy. When you are not in the mood for nail polish, I would totally wear this alone (and maybe a top coat to give it more shine) to give my nails a little bit of a "makeover". Thumbs up for this ridge filler as well, although I have no prior comparison as this was my first bottle of ridge filling product. I am aware that a lot of other brands also make ridge fillers, and I would be interested to get my hands on those one day and compare!
My nail with Makeover Ridge Filler, prior to applying cuticle cream, hence the dried up cuticle that is clearly visible in this picture. But the nail bed looks healthy and smooth, doesn't it?

The 3rd product is a Launch Pad Anti-Aging Base Coat. This could be used with the Makeover ridge filler interchangeably. I suppose if you don't have ridge or discolored nails, then you can just use Launchpad as a base coat. What a cute name it has! It is suppose to give your nails strength. I didn't quite like this one as much as the Makeover, mainly because of the blue tint it gives my nails, so for days when I just wanted to wear a base coat + top coat without any colored polish in between, I would not choose Launchpad.

Last but not least, High Maintenance Anti-Aging Top Coat. This looks just like your regular clear top coat that gives a clear high shine finish to your manicure. What's special about this top coat is that it also acts as a nail thickener. I enjoy using nail thickeners as part of my manicure every time because it does add strength dramatically on my weak, thin nails. This is no exception. I feel that once my nails are protected with a thickener/strengthener, then they won't break as easily, and this will allow my nails the chance to grow longer and stronger. My only complaint about High Maintenance is that it has a slow drying time, or perhaps it's because I am so used to how fast Seche Vite dries, but you do have to be patient with it. I accidentally put a nick on my nails while waiting for the top coat to dry.

Overall, I really enjoyed the Dermelect Nail Recovery System, and I think it is a great set to have when you have problematic nails like me and want them to be healthy, longer and stronger. The system will harden your nails while they regrow, and because all the products contain helpful ingredients for your nails, it will make recovery more speedy.  I will continue to use this system and keep updating on my nail growing progress. I had gotten my nails pretty long already with rigorous care right before my gel nails, but now that I have taken the gel nails off and cut my natural nails all short again, I am going to start over, this time with Dermelect's help on top of my nail care regimen that I am already doing (cuticle oil often, Biotin/multivitamins, etc.), and hopefully I will have the beautiful long nails that I have always dreamed of!

Thank you Soft Surroundings for sending me this product to try out. I really appreciated their timely response and taking extra care to pack my package so nicely.


Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post, I received the Dermelect Nail Recovery System to test and review for free. I did not get paid for this post, nor am I affiliated with the company (Dermelect or Soft Surrondings). All opinions expressed are my own honest opinion.