Friday Finds and other nonsense.

1.  You know those guys you see sometimes (usually on public transit) with a tear tattoo’d on their cheek?  Turns out you can acheive this look at home with just a little sunless tanner and a laugh attack before bed.  Today I woke up with a tanned face and my very own tear stain right on my cheek–I’m so HOOD.

**I just checked urban dictionary for the meaning of said tattoo on thug face–I am terrified**

2.  On the topic of public transit.  Here is a tale of “The Hollywood Crow” as interpreted by me…FORGIVE ME FOR THIS M.

A few years ago, I lived in the ATL.  I have mixed feelings about my time here, but some really redic memories of this time that are PRICELESS.

One hot day in the MARTA station, my best friend and I were waiting on the platform all dressed up for a night on the town when suddenly….OUT OF NOWHERE a bird swoops in and ATTACKS/LANDS on my besties shoulder.  We obviously panicked.  While we are both animal lovers, I FREAKIN HATE BIRDS (I think its creepy how they move their necks and their eyes are weird too…I also don’t like all the flapping around–DRAMA QUEENS.)  She was under attack–on more than one occasion I tried to Ninja chop the bird, but I couldn’t seem to get the right angle.  This whole attack lasted at least 10 mins…or like a min.  All the while she was trying to escape it was flapping and pecking.  During the last half of the attack my BFF responsibilities took over and I stopped trying to Ninja chop the bird and started to dig thru my purse searching for the one thing I knew could fix this.  When the attack was over my bestie was SO MAD AT ME for not helping more and for laughing.  I thought I was being the best WING MAN-pun intended-EVER.  While she managed to get the bird away, I had found my hand sanitizer and was ready to commence emergency sterilization procedures.  Moral of the story?  DON’T EVER LAUGH AT SOMEONE BEING ATTACKED BY A CROW.  EVER–even months later–it will always be “too soon.”

3.  Since we are talking about Ninjas:

Tragic

3.  Other Tragic Images:

4.  This is who I used to be:

5.  This is who I am now:

6.  Yesterday I wrote about the importance of a CONFIDENT smile.  Today I was inspired by my own blog and bleached my pearly whites:

In My Professional Product Whore Opinion:

DO IT.  I love these.  I get more compliments on my teeth than any other part of my body.

Whitening will make your teeth sensitive.  No one said pretty was easy.

7.  My new FAVORITE BLOG–This girl would be my best friend.  I think her accent is SEXY!!

Tanya Burr

This is where I originally fell in love with her-AND I ran out and purchased the Nars Catus Flower–Stand by for details

8.  I am always talking about not having kids.  I like kids.  I really do.  I understand the fulfillment in raising children.  I get that.  I’m just not sure its for us.  We thoroughly enjoy being DINK (Double Income No Kids) right now:)  THAT SAID, these two make my clock tick:

9.  My BirchBox has been shipped!  GET YOURSELF ON THE LIST:  BIRCHBOX

10.  Last day of the Shellac Experiment:

In My Professional Product Whore Experience:

Its been 12 days-Aside from obvious grow out, I LOVE THESE

Not a single chip!  Going back tomorrow for new BIRTHDAY WEEK/VACATION COLORS.  I plan to do my toes with Shellac too!!  I love it.  LOVE IT.

HAPPY FRIDAY!!!

Shellac Experiment Day 3-If the NYT is talking about it…it must be awesome.

From the NYT Fashion and Style section:

“MANICURES aren’t known for being everlasting. They chip. They smudge. Sometimes a nail is ruined even before you get home from the salon.

So it was curious to hear Michelle Mismas, who writes the nail-focused blog alllacqueredup.com, describe the indestructibility of a recent manicure. “When I was wearing it, I beat my hands up, and I couldn’t get a scratch,” she said by phone. “I was banging into things on purpose to see if I could trash it.”

Two weeks out, her dark raisin hue was the same shiny perfection. How? She was wearing Shellac, a soak-off hybrid between a gel and polish that will make its debut on May 1 in 2,000 salons nationwide. (She had a free sneak peek during New York Fashion Week in February.)

The product — the latest entry in a newish category of soak-off gels — has been five years in the making by Creative Nail Design, or CND. The company mixed one-of-a-kind shades for runway models in the shows by Marc Jacobs and Jason Wu this year.

Soak-off gels look like polish but last longer, in part because they are cured onto the nail with an ultraviolet lamp. The gel must be applied and removed by a professional, and the procedures cost more than standard ones.

A manicurist paints on a base coat, two color coats and top coat, as she would with regular nail lacquer. But after each coat, the soak-off gel is cured briefly under ultraviolet light, so the client leaves with impeccably dry nails. Goodbye to flip-flops in the snow postpedicure.

Removal takes longer, though, and may be tricky to do at home. Pads moist with acetone or a specially made remover are placed on the fingernail or toenail and worn for 10 to 25 minutes, depending on the brand. Sometimes, a manicurist has to scrape off crumbs of gel.

A predecessor product, hard gels, took too long to remove and involved filing, which damaged nails. But soak-off gels, now available in about half the country’s nail salons, are considered an improvement. “This year has been a huge boom in these soak-off gels,” said Hannah Lee, the editor of Nails magazine, an industry publication. “Everyone is coming out with them.”

Makers of soak-off gels hope to court D.I.Y. manicurists and women who never thought an easily chipped salon polish was worth it. Jan Arnold, a founder of CND, said in a video on the company’s Web site, “For all those women out there who are not coming to the salon for a manicure right now, they are going to be coming for Shellac, and they are going to be blown away.”

Indeed, it seems that the long-lasting gel mani is having a moment. A soak-off gel by OPI called Axxium, in 40 shades, is now in 5,000 salons, up from 250 in 2009, its first year. Bellissima, a company founded by the team that used to import a soak-off called Calgel from South Africa, created its own soft gel called Bella Forma, now in 400 salons. “Soak-off gels will be the new polish,” said Marnie Hadley, who owns Bellissima with her husband.

Only time will tell. But Nonie Creme, a founder of butter London, is skeptical. The long-lasting products “are quite simply gel overlays masquerading as paint” and overlays can lead to nail damage if they are poorly removed, she said.

Another drawback: a 14-day manicure can be too much commitment. Jennifer Belser, an aesthetician in Manhattan, admits to feeling torn. “I like to change my nails often,” said Ms. Belser, who tried Axxium in a dark berry color. Then again, “you don’t want to have to worry about them.”

But even Ms. Mismas, who adores switching colors on her fingernails, would Shellac her toes. “I don’t have the time or patience for changing my toe color that often,” she said.

The downside may be the cost. A Bella Forma manicure costs $30 to $100. Shellac will retail for 50 percent more than a basic manicure. I paid $40 to have an eggplant hue applied and $30 for it to be removed and replaced by a regular manicure. Paying a bit more might be worth the time saved and dovetail with the trend of going longer between salon services. “In the downturn of the economy, consumers didn’t frequent salons as much,” said Suzi Weiss-Fischmann, a founder of OPI. “This is a great service to stretch two weeks or even longer and have great-looking nails.”

But near the cuticles, after two weeks, a line of new growth is obvious, a problem some deal with by going clear near the cuticle, and colored toward the nail edge. Recently, Ms. Belser got a Calgel manicure that is pinkish graduating into a sparkly purple. Her ring fingers have pink with purple and magenta swirls. Boring, no. And so far, no chips.

My dry, flaky nails didn’t fare as well with Shellac. Chips struck three nails. “If your nails are dry, or there’s flaking of the natural nail, it will crack or chip where those peelings are,” said Roxanne Valinoti, a CND nail technician. Pray tell, how long does Ms. Valinoti, she of healthy nails, wear her Shellac? “I go four weeks,” she said.”  – CATHERINE SAINT LOUIS

 

Donna Alberico for The New York Times The shellac is applied to nails like normal fingernail polish.

 

Donna Alberico for The New York Times PAINT JOB After application, the soak-off gel is dried with an ultraviolet light box.

 

Donna Alberico for The New York Times To take it off, removal wraps go on each finger for at least 10 minutes.

My Professional Product Whore Opinion:

These are here to stay.

I have also tested Axxium and LOVE LOVE LOVE.

Shellac Experiment Day 3-Still perfect

 

Shellac Experiment! Day 2 Gel Vs Shellac

What’s the difference between Gel and Shellac???

Gel nails are artificial nails that look extremely realistic . They are thin, flexible, non-yellowing and non porous. Gel nails give  customers a natural look and give them durability equally like acrylic nails. They also feel lighter then Acrylic nails.I’ve had Acrylic nails in the past and much prefer gel to Acrylic.  Gel nails are more pricey then acrylic, but about the same as Shellac.  For you ladies that like to have patterns-Gel Nails DO allow for this.  SHELLAC’d nails DO NOT.

Images from: Here

“Gel nails are applied as a thin layer of gel over the natural nail, with a tip or as a sculptured nail. Sculptured gel nails use a form under the natural nail over which the gel is placed. The gel layer is cured and becomes hard under an ultraviolet light. Usually four or more layers of gel are applied and cured under the light. Removal s a little longer than acrylic removal as gel must be filed off, acetone and polish remover have no effect on gel. Gel nails are more flexible when compared to acrylic nails, this gives a more natural feel as well as a more natural look.

Gel nails are very durable, perfect for the client who works with their hands, cleans often or works outside! Gel is not porous which means that bacteria cannot enter the nail and nail infections under the gel is very uncommon. Since gel is unaffected by acetone, you can paint your gel nails with a regular polish if you so desire for a special occasion!!”  –Turning Heads

 Nailgasam….for real.  They’re so CoCo Chanel

“Shellac, also known as a soak-off gel, is a gel polish hybrid. It is applied like polish with a base coat, two coats of polish and a top coat. Between each coat of polish, the nails are cured under a UV light. This hardens the polish so it is instantly dry after your manicure. Shellac has properties of gel, but no filing is needed and therefore no nail damage is associated with soak-off gels. Shellac polish has a high-gloss shine and it is self-leveling so no ridges and imperfections are visible in the nail when using darker, more vibrant colors. A Shellac manicure will last up to two weeks without lifting, chipping or losing its shine. One of the most amazing innovations in nails recently, Shellac is also available for toes, and since it is dry instantly, no flip flops are needed! Perfect for winter pedicures!”

Shellac Experiment Day 2-Still Perfect

My Professional Product Whore Opinion:

Stay tuned.  So far, so good.  Day two and not a chip or smudge or crack THAT said, someone I work with JUST said: “It looks like you made a mistake since they aren’t all the same color.”  I suppose this is true to the untrained Pinterest eye….I decided not to fill him in on the multicolored nail rage:)

Shellac Experiment! Day 1

What is Shellac?

“Better science makes better products.  The patent-pending formulation of solvents, momomers and polymers is why Shellac goes on like polish, wears like gel and removes in minutes.  Plus, it’s hypo-allergenic and contains no formaldehyde, toluene or DBP.  14 day wear, zero dry time and no chips or smudging?”

“Shellac is a Power Polish that has changed the natural nail industry.  You can rely on it to give an amazing 14 day wear with proper home care. There are classes available around the world to perfect application technique and even add some artistic elements. However, sometimes a perfect application can be made more difficult if the Shellac has not been taken care of in the salon. ”  -Info from CND :  Here

Plus

Equals


I decided to go with a funky candy themed polish:)  I LOVE THEM TODAY, we will see how much I like them in 14 days!

SHH says I am shamelessly posting a pic of my ring, truth is I am right handed and couldn’t get a clear pic of my right hand.

My Professional Product Whore Opinion:

3 weeks ago I went in and got Shellac’d.  I went with clear, I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVED it.  It lasted SO SO SO long and was great that I had to do absolutely no maintenance in the mean time.  AND THEY WERE SO SHINY!  So in honor of birthday month I went with a fun melony/teal combo.  I love it now…we will see how long it takes to drive me nuts:)

The thing I love most about Shellac is that it makes my nails extremely strong and I never have to mess with them!  Worth every penny to me:)

Stand by for the 14 day test…we will see how well they hold up in color.