Saturday, June 30, 2012

Yellow Lounge US Launch

photo credit: Yellow Lounge US
Recently I had the opportunity to attend the United States launch of Yellow Lounge. Yellow Lounge was launched in Berlin seven years ago- it is a series of performance events bringing together the best and brightest of contemporary Classical music in urban spaces. The New York City Yellow Lounge kicked off the U.S series right with an amazing evening full of wonderful classical performances by Grammy-award winning artists.
It was such a well-put-together, entertaining evening. The hightlight was, of course, the performances by the likes of Mandolinist Avi Avital, and Violinist Nicola Benedetti. However, there were so many other little bits and pieces that made the evening special. There was a photo booth where you could snap a little keepsake for the evening, and a flipbook booth where a short video of you and your friends was turned into a paper flipbook for you to take home. There was a great bar as well, featuring signature cocktails and craft beers. The event was full of people, but not so many that you couldn't breathe! The PR team (especially the super-cute interns!) did a really nice job. I had a great time, and I love how Yellow Lounge is bringing Classical music to a younger audience. Here are some photos from the event:


photo credit: Yellow Lounge US
photo credit: Yellow Lounge US

photo credit: Yellow Lounge US
Nowadays, many people listen to classical music to wind down and relax.. Yellow Lounge has managed to put the party back into it! You can find out more about Yellow Lounge here
What sort of music do you listen to?
Thanks so much for reading! 
All the best, 
Jessica

Friday, June 29, 2012

Barielle Giveaway!

I think its high time for a giveaway, don't you? I wanted to thank you all for your support since I started this blog, it has been overwhelming!!
I'm giving away a set of Barielle polishes to celebrate-- the Over the Edge collection!


Please read all the rules, I'll be validating the winning entry so make sure its squeaky-clean! :oD
GOOD LUCK!

a Rafflecopter giveaway





Disclosure: Barielle generously provided the prize for this giveaway :)

Abstract Nail Art Challenge Day 15: Recreate Favorite!

Well, this is it! The last day of the Abstract Nail Art Challenge. Today, we were to recreate our favorite manicure from one of our fellow challenge participants. I couldn't pick a favorite! All three of the other ladies participating did amazing work this entire month. So, I went with one that I really loved and also used a technique I've been wanting to try.  I picked Victoria of the Manicurator's Leopard Print Manicure! I absolutely loved the look of this mani. Really cute and funky nail art without being too "out there". While Victoria did her's in lovely pinks, I did my version in more safari-appropriate shades!
I first painted my nails with the gorgeous Santa Fe Road from Rescue Beauty lounge, then added gold (Color Club's Disco Nap) dots randomly. Then, with a Kiss Nail Art pen, I added the black detail. Simple and very chic- I love it! It figures the manicure I chose to end the Abstract Nail Art challenge was one of the least abstract of them all. This challenge was very, well.. challenging for me! I usually do much more representational nail art. It was great though, as it got me to think outside the box and try a lot of new things. Many thanks to Emily from The Lacquerologist for creating and coordinating the challenge!
Be sure to check out the favorite (and final!) manicures from the other ladies participating in the challenge.

Sincerely Stephanie
Manicurator

Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I purchased all mentioned items myself :)

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Sunny's Miracle Balm by 365 Days of Color

If you follow the nail blog 365 Days of Color (and you should!) then you know that it's creator, Sunny, has recently come out with her own line of nail polish. I've reviewed a couple on the blog and they are all gorgeous! Her newest foray into nail care is her wonderful new Miracle Balm.
I love a good cuticle balm (I have dozens!) and this one has it all.. not only is it ultra-rich and moisturizing, but it is enriched with amazing ingredients like Vitamin E and Biotin to actually help strengthen and grow your nails. I've only been using it for a couple of weeks, so I can't report on its nail-strengthening abilities quite yet, but I can tell you that the ingredients used are wonderful.
Besides the fact that the balm is really nourishing, one of the cool things about it is that you can customize it. Sunny has gone a little fragrance-crazy, and offers it in over 60 different scents- from Ylang Ylang to Mango Papaya and everything in between! It is also extremely affordable at 3 dollars for a 1/2 ounce tin. 365 Days of Color did it again with this balm.. a reasonably prices, excellent product. Well done! You can find it at her shop, here.
What cuticle care products do you use?
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: This product was provided for review. All opinions are my own. 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Clash of the Titans! Artsy Wednesday AND Abstract Nail Art Challenge!

Today, due to a rare and massive alignment of the planets.. Artsy Wednesday and the Abstract Nail Art Challenge have fallen on the same day! Providentially, I was able to do a manicure that satisfied the requirements for both. The theme for Artsy Wednesday was "ombre", and the Abstract challenge was to do a manicure using a new-to-you tutorial. So, I used a tutorial from Codename Aya (here) to create an ombre gradient mani! Ta-da!
This is a technique I've never done before.. sponging on a gradient. I'm really happy with how it turned out. It was easy to do and I love the look! The polishes I used were Barielle "The Sky's the Limit" and a baby blue frankenpolish I mixed up. Be sure to check out the new tutorial manicures from the other ladies participating in the Abstract Nail Art Challenge:

Sincerely Stephanie
Manicurator

And also please be sure to check out the Ombre manicures from the other ladies participating in Artsy Wednesday (We have a new participant this week, www.kakabeautyblog.com !)


And that, ladies and gentlemen, is what I believe is called "Two birds with one stone".
Haha! Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I purchased all mentioned products myself :)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Essie Bikini So Teeny Review and Swatch

I have a lovely polish to show you today- Bikini So Teeny from Essie. What a cute, cheeky name for a polish! BST is a lovely pale cornflower blue with subtle shimmer. It is fun, feminine, and wearable all at once.
I absolutely love a light blue polish, and this one's great formula and coverage make it a keeper in my stash! I am rarely disappointed in an Essie, and this is no exception. Have you tried any of the new Summer shades from Essie? I've got Mint Mojito (from the same collection) on my toes right now as well! It is a great set of polishes!
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I purchased this polish myself :)

Monday, June 25, 2012

The Bloom Ambassador Program June Box!

This month, I signed up for the Bloom Beauty Ambassador program. Bloom.com sends out curated boxes of beauty goodies to a group of women ranging from beauty bloggers to professionals to enthusiasts. In exchange, we provide honest reviews on those products. That is what Bloom.com is- a social beauty store. A place where you can go and read honest, unbiased reviews from women like you and be able to make better beauty purchasing decisions. I hope that this blog is a place like that for you, too!
So, here is what came in the box this month, as well as a few thoughts on each item.

Abstract Nail Art Challenge: Day 13

Today's Abstract Nail Art Challenge was to combine two of the techniques featured in previous challenges. So, I chose to combine Dots and Ombre. I achieved this by painting my nails with a base coat of Rescue Beauty Lounge Halcyon, and adding a gradation of dots using Essie Navigate Her, Absolutely Shore, and Marshmellow. Here is the result:
I really like this manicure! It is super cute and really easy to do, whether you are an experienced or beginner nail artist. I'm looking forward to trying this dot-ombre technique with other color combinations. What do you think?
Be sure to check out the combo manicures from the other ladies participating in the June Abstract Nail Art Challenge.. we're in the home stretch!

Sincerely Stephanie
Manicurator
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I purchased all mentioned products myself. 

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Kaia Bamboo Facial Cleansing Cloths

source:bloom.com
 Up for review today are Kaia's Bamboo Facial Cleansing Cloths. What is cool about these is that they are 100% biodegradeable, making them a very eco-concious choice when it comes to makeup removal. Below is a before and after.. Me with a full face of makeup, and then after cleaning my half my face with the Kaia cloths and the other half with generic store brand makeup cloths.
As you can see, both sides are identical. The Kaia cloths as well as the store-brand removed my makeup equally well. Neither required much rubbing to take care of my eyeliner and mascara. However, the Kaia cloths are smaller than your standard makeup remover wipes, making them a little more difficult to use. The Kaia cloths are also quite expensive, at $17.99 for 30 wipes. Since they don't work any better than the store brand.. I think I'll be sticking with the generics! I appreciate the eco-friendly component of these wipes, but they need to be at a better price point as far as I'm concerned. They cost about 60 cents per wipe, which adds up quick. I'm fine with spending a bit extra on a beauty product.. but it has got to be something special.
Would you splurge on these? What do you use to take off your makeup?
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: These were provided to me as part of the Bloom.com Beauty Ambassadors Program. All opinions are my own. :)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Abstract Nail Art Challenge: Day 12

Today's Abstract challenge is the one I've been dreading.. Water Marbling! Are you familiar with the process? You swirl together drops of nail polish atop a cup of water. Then, working quickly, you dunk your nail into it to transfer the marble design. It is quite messy and unpredictable.. not my kind of manicure! But, I can't back down from the Abstract Challenge! So, after painting my nails with a white base coat, I swirled together Color Club Lava Lamp, Zoya Robyn, Sally Hansen Yellow Kitty, and Barielle Swizzle Stix. I dunked one nail in at a time, and after extensive clean-up, this was the result:
The marbling is pretty... but quite inconsistent. It is a hard technique to get the hang of! I'm glad I did it though. A challenge should be, well... Challenging!
What do you think? Would you ever tackle a water marble?
Be sure to check out the marble manicures from the other ladies participating in the Abstract Challenge!

Sincerely Stephanie
Manicurator

Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure- Some products mentioned were provided to me, others I purchased myself. All opinions are my own! :o) 

Friday, June 22, 2012

Beautiful, natural products from Indie Lee!

Have you ever heard of Indie Lee? She is a pretty remarkable woman with a very inspirational story. Several years ago doctors successfully removed from her brain a potentially fatal tumor. When she discovered it was possible that the tumor was caused by environmental toxins, she devoted herself to creating her eponymous line of all-natural beauty products- providing women of all ages with products free from potentially harmful ingredients like parabens and phthalates. I had the opportunity to try out a few of her products recently, and I'm happy to report that they are as lovely and efficacious as they are safe. 

I tried out The Body Scrub, The Body Wash, and The Body Lotion. The first thing you notice about all three of them is their amazing fragrances.. subtle, natural, and absolutely divine! No harsh chemical-like smells to be found here. I like the fact that the fragrances are all different, but connected enough where they layer beautifully. The Body Scrub's Coconut Citrus scent is my favorite.. it sort of smells like a lemon-coconut cookie! I also love how wonderfully the scrub exfoliates. The Body Wash is great, too! Not a ton of lather (I'm assuming this is due to the absence of certain chemicals), but it gets you clean and washes away without any residue. The Body Lotion absorbs very quickly and all three products leave a trace of their beautiful fragrances on your skin.
I was really happy with everything I tried.. Indie Lee is a lovely brand with a wonderful mission.
Have you ever tried out any Indie Lee products? You can find these and many more at IndieLee.com .
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: These samples were provided to me by the manufacturer, all opinions are my own. :o) 

Thursday, June 21, 2012

My Interview with Tip or Skip!

Are you on Tip or Skip yet? Its a really fun way to discover new products and other fun stuff from all over the internet. While you are browsing the web you can "tip" cool things that you see, and over on Tip or Skip those who are following you will see your tips and can then choose to Tip or Skip them themselves! What you end up with is a fun virtual board of all the cool stuff you've discovered.
I stopped by the Tip or Skip headquarters recently and was interviewed by Arielle, their Community Manager (and recent California transplant!).
They are a really fun company, and everyone who works there is super cool! Check out my interview below, and be sure to follow me on Tip or Skip here to see all the fun stuff I've tipped. Oh, and pardon my awkwardness.. I think I'm best off in front of the keyboard-- not the camera!

Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I'm not affiliated with Tip or Skip.. but I like them a bunch! 

Behindthechair.com's Viviscal Event with Oscar Blandi, Martino Cartier, and Jill Zarin

Earlier this Spring I had the opportunity to go to a great event in New York City, hosted by Behindthechair.com and Viviscal. The event was filmed as a Webinar for Behindthechair.com, and dealt with tips and tricks for dealing with thinning hair. Thinning hair is a topic that still carries a lot of stigma for women, despite the fact that age, stress, and environmental factors are making it increasingly common.
The Webinar was hosted by former Real Housewife Jill Zarin and featured a little runway Hair Show with models styled by Celebrity Hairstylist Oscar Blandi. Oscar showed the audience how to style and volumize to camouflage thinning hair. He and fellow Celebrity Hairstylist (and Viviscal Spokesperson) Martino Cartier also spoke about Viviscal, an all natural supplement meant to restore thinning hair.
I like it because it is an all-natural vitamin supplement, combining vitamins, minerals, and an exclusive Marine bio-complex to restore hair that is thinning due to hereditary, post-pregnancy, and a variety of other causes. It is totally natural and drug free, and not only helps thicken and strengthen hair, but nails too! Oscar Blandi and Martino Cartier both mentioned that they often reccommended it to their celebrity clients as a "Secret Weapon" for thick, beautiful hair. Even women whose hair is not thinning can benefit from it, as it can add even more health and strength to already healthy hair and nails. 
It was a nice event- the hair models were gorgeous, Oscar Blandi was so engaging and funny, and Martino Cartier was wearing the blingiest, most fabulous jacket ever! Here are a few photos of the event:
Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge
(images courtesy of Viviscal)
Viviscal has been kind enough to give me a few months of the supplement to try, so I'll report back here in the Fall with my personal experience!
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I am not affiliated with Viviscal or Behindthechair.com, however I will be honestly reviewing the Viviscal supplement over the next few months. 

Abstract Nail Art Challenge: Day 11

Today's Abstract challenge is the wackiest one yet.. To use a household item in your manicure. I think this meant that we could use an item like a straw or saran wrap to paint/add effects to our nails. I, however, took the challenge quite literally! I did my nails with aluminum foil. To do this, I cut pieces of aluminum foil to the exact shape of my nails. I put on a clear coat of polish, then the bit of foil, and followed with another coat of polish. The look is.. well.. interesting!
Certainly not something I'd wear for everyday... but it was fun to try and it lasted surprisingly well!
Make sure to check out the "Household Item" manicures from the other ladies participating in the Abstract Challenge:

Sincerely Stephanie
Manicurator
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I bought my aluminum foil myself! :oD

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Artsy Wednesday: Inspired by Nature!

Time for another Artsy Wednesday challenge! This week, our assignment was to create a manicure inspired by nature. For some reason, I knew what I wanted to do right away! My idea was to create the look of a pine forest silhouetted against a dark sky. Here is what I came up with:
I painted my nails with a base coat of Revlon Posh, then drew in the trees and stars using my black and white Migi nail art pens. I'm really happy with this manicure, it came out just the way I'd envisioned it!
Be sure to check out the nature-inspired manicures by the other ladies participating in Artsy Wednesday!




What do you think of my nature manicure? What themes would you explore for a challenge like this?
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I purchased all mentioned products myself. :o)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Abstract Nail Art Challenge: Day 10


Today's abstract nail challenge is Stripes.. just two challenges away from the dreaded Water Marble! But we'll cross that bridge when we come to it! For today's challenge, I simply painted my nails with a neon purple basecoat (Sinful Color's Dream On) and added glitter stripes using 365 Days Of Color Polish's Sugar High. To do this, I let the purple dry very well and then stuck very thin strips of tape to my nail. I then added a coat of Sugar High on top of the tape, then quickly peeled the tape away- leaving lovely glitter stripes! I did the stripes in varying directions to add some interest to the manicure. What do you think?
I love the stripes! Sugar High is such a gorgeous polish.. a super dense, turquoise, lavender and pink glitter! Please check out the manicures from the other ladies participating in the Abstract Challenge! 
Thank you so much for reading! 
All the best, 
Jessica

Disclosure: I purchased one of the mentioned products myself, the other was a gift. All opinions are my own :) 

Monday, June 18, 2012

Target Summer Beauty Bag

Recently Target held another promotion on their Facebook page where they were offering a "beauty bag" filled with samples. You may recall that they did this in the Spring, as well (you can read about that bag here). This time, as usual, the page was totally overloaded with beauty fans clamoring to get their hands on a free bag! Although it took a little bit of page refreshing and a lot of persistence, I was able to order one. Well, it came in the mail and here is what was in it!
As you can see, the bag had quite a few samples! Tresemme shampoo and conditioner, Neutrogena sunblock, Aveno body scrub, Garnier shampoo and conditioner, and Revlon Lip Butter. It also came with a book of beauty coupons redeemable exclusively at Target. The bag everything came in is really cute, too! Blue on blue damask (one of my favorite patterns!).
Were you able to snag a Target Beauty Bag this time around? I hope they do more in the future.. It is a great deal (well, its a free deal!) and really fun to get in the mail. I'm looking forward to trying the Aveeno scrub, and I'm going to pop the Neutrogena sunblock in my purse for on-the-go SPF touch-ups. I hope the SPF 70 is strong enough for my absurdly pale skin!
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I received this bag for free as part of the Target Summer Beauty Bag promotion on Facebook.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Abstract Nail Art Challenge: Day 9

Today's Abstract Challenge was to incorporate the "Sponging" technique into a manicure. This is achieved by dipping a small piece of sponge into a bit of polish and lightly sponging onto the nail. The sponge can be a kitchen sponge, a sponge paintbrush, or even a sponge makeup applicator.
For my manicure, I sponged little bits of neon colors (Sinful Colors Dream On, Neon Melon, and Summer Peach as well as Color Club Jackie Oh) over a basecoat of Milani White on the Spot. To add a little more dimension and contrast, I added a topcoat of Lynnderella Connect the Dots.

I like this look a lot! You can achieve really pretty, well-blended gradient effects using this technique. Would you give it a go?
Be sure to check out the sponge manicures from the other ladies participating in the Abstract Nail Art Challenge!

Sincerely Stephanie
Manicurator

Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I purchased all mentioned products myself :)

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Julep Maven Boho Glam Intro Box-- AND GIVEAWAY!

Have you ever heard of the Julep Maven program? Each month you get a box of nail polish and accoutrements tailored to your personal style. There are a few options, including "It Girl", "Classic with a Twist", and "Boho Glam". You take a little style quiz to determine which one best fits your style, but if you don't think they got it quite right, you can manually choose the box you'd like to receive.
I got the Boho Glam intro box this month, and here's what was in it!:
Two colors were included- Jodie (a deep red with gold shimmer) and Annette (a lovely dove grey creme). Also included was a tube of Julep's "Best Pedi Creme Ever!" as well as some toe separators. I'm really looking forward to trying the pedi creme! I like this box, its a cute little surprise to get in the mail each month. It is well-curated, too. Its almost like getting a little care package from a friend! I like the fact that while it is still a surprise each month, you know that you'll be getting colors/items tailored to your style.
Julep was kind enough to share with me a couple of extras for you!
If you use the code:  MAVENINTRO on julep.com you can get an introductory box similar to this one for a penny!
Also, they've shared with me a box to give away! You can enter using the rafflecopter widget below. Good luck!! (I'm not sure if the "follow via Google Friend Connect" option is working on the widget, just make sure you are following my blog via google friend connect to be eligible for that entry!)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thank you so much for reading! (and entering!)
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: This box was provided to me by Julep for review. All opinions are my own :o)

Friday, June 15, 2012

Abstract Nail Art Challenge: Day 8 Featuring The New Black!

Today's challenge was to create an Ombre Manicure. I had just the set of polishes to create this look.. boy did it make my life easy! I used The New Black's ombre set of polishes in "Walrus".. a perfectly matched and gradated set of neutral and brown tones. So, I just painted each nail a different color in order from darkest to lightest.. easy as pie! The look is so, so chic!
 I love it! And this kit makes the ombre look SO easy. This is one day that the Abstract Challenge wasn't much of a challenge! You can find this and lots of other sets by The New Black at Sephora.com
What do you think of the Ombre look? Check out the Ombre manis from the other Abstract Challenge ladies!

Sincerely Stephanie
Manicurator
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: the products mentioned were provided to me by the company or their PR. As always, I am committed to giving you my honest opinion :o) 

Thursday, June 14, 2012

A bit about Gloss48, a new Beauty Flash Sale site! (plus a 10$ coupon!)


I LOVE Flash Sale sites.. places like Hautelook, Gilt, Etc. They give you great deals on awesome products, and the "limited time only" aspect adds a little bit of excitement to the shopping process. I recently found out about a really exciting new Flash Sale startup.. Gloss48.com . What is different about them is that they are strictly beauty! They offer upcoming brands as well as cult favorites at big discounts. Starting tomorrow (6/14) at 11AM EST, they'll be doing a Flash Sale of LAQA & Co. Nail Polish Pens as well as Lip Crayons. You may remember the review I did recently on the LAQA pens (here):
LAQA is a fun, different, upcoming beauty brand.. really indicative of what you'll find on Gloss48. Their products will be on the site at 30% off tomorrow, but get this.. Gloss48 has been kind enough to give me a discount code to share with you guys that will get you an additional 10 dollars off a LAQA purchase. Use the coupon " BGLAQA10 " and you can score some great stuff at an amazing price!
Gloss48.com is brand new, and I'm really excited to see what the future holds for them..
Do you like scoping out Flash Sale sites? What are some of your favorites?
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I am not affiliated with or compensated by either Gloss48 or LAQA & Co. :o) 

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Artsy Wednesday: 3D!

This week's Artsy Wednesday challenge was to create a manicure using 3D elements- that is, to stick a bunch of stuff to my nails!
I don't do this often.. most of my nail art is hand-painted. I didn't have a lot of 3D nail art goodies lying around, but I did have some pretty blue floral gems. So, I started with a base coat of Essie Bikini So Teeny and then applied the flowers one-by-one. I then topped the whole shebang with Darya from 365 Days of Color's upcoming polish collection for a little extra sparkle.
I think the manicure is pretty cute.. but it is also a little much for me! All that texture on my nails was driving me nuts.. It was hard to resist the urge to pick off the little flowers. While it is a cute and funky look, I'm sticking to painting my nails!
Be sure to check out the fun 3D creations from the other ladies participating in Artsy Wednesday!


Do you ever do 3D nail art?
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: Some products mentioned were provided to me by the manufacturer or their PR, some were purchased by me. As always, I am committed to giving you my honest opinion :)

Abstract Nail Art Challenge: Day 6

Today for the Abstract Nail Art challenge we have a manicure that I've never tried before.. the Half Moon Mani! This involves taping off a half moon shape at the base of your nail. I started with a base coat of Sally Hansen Coral fever, and let it dry very thoroughly. This is important, as you don't want the tape to pull up wet polish. When it was dry, I stuck little circles of masking tape to the base of my nail, covering the part I wanted to stay coral. I then added a coat of Kroovy by Strange Polish. I chose Kroovy because it looks great over the coral with just one coat. I then quickly pulled away the tape, leaving the coral half moon.
This is a really cute manicure! Although its a little bit labor-intensive, I think the end look is worth it.
Have you ever done a half moon manicure? Be sure to check out the half moon manicures by the other ladies participating in the Abstract Challenge!

Sincerely Stephanie
Manicurator
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: Some products mentioned were provided to me by the manufacturer or their PR, some were purchased by me. As always, I am committed to giving you my honest opinion :)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

All About Alice!

I had the pleasure of attending Alice Alan's Spring Cocktail Party last week. Alice Alan is a line of women's footwear with a great concept that should be (but isn't!!) a no-brainer for any shoe company- heels that are beautiful AND comfortable!
It was a lovely event, and I got to see in person Alice's entire line of shoes. They are true to their word.. gorgeous and comfy! I tried a couple pairs on and didn't experience any of the tightness, pinching, and instant pain that all too often comes along with trying on a pretty pair of heels. Here are some of the styles I got a peek at:
I love the menswear-inspired Oxford heels, as well as the patent leather detailing that you can see on a lot of the shoes. I think there is a pair here for everyone. I also got to meet Alice Chen herself, founder of the company. Not only was she very kind and gracious, but she has an obvious enthusiasm for the brand and the idea behind it- "Fashion that is good for the Sole!"
If you are in the NYC area, Alice Alan has a couple of great events coming up... including a sample sale! I'll definitely be hitting that up, as you can score a pair of these lovelies at a big discount.
Here is the info for the events:

Sangria Wednesday, 6/20 6-8p
Join Alice Alan & Royal Drama for an evening of shopping, networking and cocktails
61 W. 62nd Street (@ Columbus), NY, NY 10023
RSVP by June 15

Alice Alan Sample Sale, 6/21 & 6/22, 5-9p
Join us for an evening of exclusive sales
Dolita Paris Boutique: 336 E. 54th Street (between 1st & 2nd Avenue), NY, NY 10022
RSVP by June 18

Invite your girlfriends - the more the merrier.
What do you think of these shoes? Do you sacrifice comfort for style often? Now you don't have to!
You can find out more about the brand at http://www.alicealan.com/
Thank you so much for reading, 
All the best, 
Jessica

Disclosure: I have no affiliation with Alice Alan. But I do appreciate a good pair of shoes! :o) 

Monday, June 11, 2012

Abstract Nail Art Challenge: Day 6 (With the LCN Colour Me Up Collection!)

Today's Abstract Nail Art Challenge technique is a simple one.. Dots! Dotting a manicure is easy. Using a special nail dotting tool (or the end of a bobby pin-thats what I do!) you just dip into some polish and dot it on to the nail.. simple as that! The dots can be placed evenly or haphazardly.. in one color or in many. The possibilities are really endless! I did a fun, colorful manicure using the four colors in the new LCN Colour Me Up Collection.
lcnusa.com
lcnusa.com

 I love doing nail art with sets like this.. using the four coordinating colors included in the set makes my life easy! I painted my nails with the green, "Fanappleistic", as a base, and then added dots with the remaining three colors.

I love the look.. its like a candy shop! A really fun summer mani. I love these polishes, too. Super-saturated, pigment-rich beauties! The colors are so vibrant and they all applied like a dream. You can find them at lcnusa.com

Make sure to check out the "dotticures" from the lovely ladies participating in the Abstract Challenge:

Sincerely Stephanie
Manicurator
Have you ever done a dot mani? Its fun and easy!
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: The products mentioned were provided to me by the manufacturer or their PR. As always, I am committed to giving you my honest opinion :)


Sunday, June 10, 2012

Premier Dead Sea Beautifying Nail Kit

One thing I really love is nail treatments. I have a multitude of hand and nail creams and the like, and use them several times daily- so I was happy to get to try out the Beautifying Nail Kit. The kit includes a 4 sided buffing block, nail file, hand and body creme, and mineral-rich cuticle treatment. 
As you can see, it includes everything necessary to file, buff, and moisturize your nails. Buffing shouldn't be done *too* often, as you don't want to make your nails weak, but it is a great way to reduce ridges and get a lovely shiny finish. Buffing also creates a great blank canvas for nail polishes! Here are my nails before and after doing the whole treatment.. Filing, buffing, treating my nails with the cuticle serum, and finally moisturizing my hands with the creme.
As you can see, this kit is a great way to quickly give your nails a radiant, healthy look. The moisturizing treatments are really effective and smell wonderful. This kit comes in three fragrances: Herbal, Passion Fruit, and Milk and Honey. I tried the Milk and Honey kit, and I loved the fragrance. Subtle and pleasant. This is a really nice kit and I think it would make a lovely gift! You can find it at http://www.premierdeadsea.com/
What is your daily nail routine?
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: This was provided to me by the manufacturer or their PR for review. As always, I am committed to giving you my honest opinion!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Abstract Nail Art Challenge: Day 5


Time for another Abstract Nail Art Challenge! Today's challenge is a technique that I have never used before.. Needle Marbling! This process involves painting thick layers of different colored polishes and (working quickly) swirling designs in them while they are still wet. I used a blue color scheme for my manicure:
The colors used are Nails Inc. Baker Street, Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Phantasm, and Finger Paints Blue Raspberry Taffy. I like the look of this manicure, but in practicality its a little tough because the thick layers of polish take a really long time to dry and are quite susceptible to denting. 
Make sure to check out the needle marbles by the other ladies participating in the Abstract Nail Art Challenge:
Sincerely Stephanie
Manicurator
Have you ever done a needle marble?
Thank you so much for reading! 
All the best, 
Jessica

Disclosure: I purchased all mentioned products myself :o)

Friday, June 8, 2012

Shea Terra Organics Bananas & Baobabs Shea Butter Body Cream

I recently had the opportunity to try out Shea Terra Organic's Banana and Baobabs Body Creme. Shea Terra is a really wonderful, socially-conscious company. From sourcing natural ingredients from developing countries in an effort to alleviate poverty to helping to preserve disappearing habitats, Shea Terra is mindful of the planet and the people on it every step of the way. Besides the wonderful efforts of the company.. the products are awesome too! 
Sheaterraorganics.com
This ultra-moisturizing cream is made with rich, skin-nourishing ingredients like Shea Butter and African Baobab Oil. Baobab oil is full of vitamins and omega fatty acids that increase skin moisture and elasticity, while Shea Butter is well-known miracle skin moisturizer. This cream is lovely.. it has a rich, whipped texture and absorbs really well. A little goes a long way, too! But the best thing about this cream is the fragrance.. it smells just like a creamy banana pudding. I hate that chemically, artificial banana smell.. but you won't find that here. It really smells like a luscious homemade banana confection. I love it! It is a great cream for very dry skin like mine. You can find this and many other responsibly produced, natural beauty products at  www.sheaterraorganics.com .
What sort of fragrances do you like in a body cream?
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: This was provided to me by the manufacturer or their PR for review. As always, I am committed to giving you my honest opinion!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Abstract Nail Art Challenge: Day Four


Today's theme for the Abstract Nail Art Challenge is the V-Gap manicure. I thought this manicure was going to be difficult, but it really just requires a steady hand.
First I painted my nails with a base of Orly Charged Up, then (again, using a steady hand) I did two swipes of Orly Lunar Eclipse on each nail- leaving a narrow "V-Gap". Simple, and different! I like it! The colors I chose aren't too dissimilar, so this is a pretty subtle V-Gap.. It would look awesome with more contrasting colors, too. Maybe neons? The possibilities are endless!
Make sure to check out the V-Gap manicures by the other ladies participating in the Abstract Challenge!
The Lacquerologist
Sincerely Stephanie
Manicurator

What do you think? Would you rock the V-Gap look? Thanks so much for reading, and check back the day after tomorrow for our needle marble manicures!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I purchased all mentioned items myself :o)

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Artsy Wednesday: My Favorite Color

Today's Artsy Wednesday challenge was pretty broad- Create a manicure inspired by your favorite color. My favorite color is green. There are so many beautiful shades of green.. a soft, pale seafoam green is very comforting to me, while a bright lime green can be really energizing. One of my favorite places to see green is outside on a beautiful day. I love walking outdoors on a sunny day and seeing different shades of green all around me. So, I did a manicure inspired by the different shades of green I see outdoors. I wanted to do a pretty representation of leaves on my nails.

I didn't get hyper-detailed with this manicure.. I wanted a soft, subtle representation of green leaves drifting down to the ground. I used a base of Essie Navigate her, and then did the leaves using Revlon Posh, Barielle Green Opal, Zoya Dree, and my Migi Nail Art Pens. What do you think?

Don't forget to check out the colorful creations of the other ladies participating in Artsy Wednesday! 
What is your favorite color?
Thank you so much for reading! 
All the best, 
Jessica

Disclosure: Some products mentioned were purchased by me, others were provided to me by the manufacturer or their PR. As always, I am committed to giving you my honest opinion :o) 

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Abstract Nail Art Challenge: Day 3


Today's Abstract Nail Art Challenge theme is the Splatter Manicure! This incredibly messy nail art technique creates little tiny Jackson Pollock-like works of art on your nails. The process is simple, you paint your nails a base color, and then splatter different colors of polish onto your nails. The technique I used for this was easy- I dipped a straw into the color and then blew through the straw- splattering the polish on my nails.


The base color I used was Sally Hansen Lavender Cloud, and I splattered with Nails Inc. Baker Street, Fingerpaints Blue Raspberry Taffy, and Orly Charged Up. Many Splatter Manicure tutorials recommend taping off your nail to minimize cleanup, but what I did was coat the skin around my nails with petroleum jelly. When I was done doing the splatter, the polish just wiped right off along with the jelly. If you try this, be sure to put newspaper down in your work area, this makes a HUGE MESS! Here are my nails pre-cleanup:
Yikes!! I like the end result of this manicure, but I'm not sure if I'd do it again! I'm a bit of a control freak when it comes to doing my nails and this technique is a bit.. unpredictable. I do like the look, though! 


Make sure to check out the splatter manicures from the other ladies participating in the Abstract Nail Art Challenge:
The Lacquerologist
Sincerely Stephanie
Manicurator

What do you think? Would you have a crack at a splatter manicure?
Thank you so much for reading!
All the best,
Jessica

Disclosure: I purchased all mentioned products myself :o)

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