04 Apr

Caronia Shades of Summer – Swatches and Review

Greetings fellow polish lovers!

I’ve got a lovely summer collection of polishes to share with you today. Caronia sent me their new Shades of Summer Collection which consists of six fun shades and includes something for everyone. I’m just going to get right into the swatches and tell you what I thought. All these photos were taken in my light-box.

Summer Fling

Caronia Summer Fling Swatch

Summer Fling is a very pretty pinkish-plum creme. Its formula was just right, and I almost got away with using just one coat. I went ahead and used two to ensure no bald spots—because I’m OC like that. This shade is a fun color to sport during the summer without being too loud and crazy.

Rainbow Tan

Caronia Rainbow Tan Swatch

Rainbow Tan is a work-safe tan/beige frosted polish. It has me a bit confused with the choice of name as this isn’t rainbow-y at all. It is tan though, so we’ll just go with that. The formula on this one was thinner than the rest and is the only one that needed 3 coats for full coverage. Frosted polishes tend to show streaky brush strokes and this one does just that, as you can see. If you are into more muted shades and don’t mind frosted polishes then I’m sure you will love Rainbow Tan. It just wasn’t my cup of tea.

Sun Kissed

Caronia Sun Kissed Swatch

Sun Kissed is a vibrant orange creme that screams summer! It was an easy two-coater, and I’m surprised how much I ended up liking it despite it giving me lobster hands (making my skin look pinker than normal). This one is not for the faint of heart. Ha!

Sweet Surprise

Caronia Sweet Surprise Swatch

Sweet Surprise is right! This is a fun, bright yellow creme. It has a shimmer in the bottle that can’t be seen on the nails. But that’s not a problem for me. Application was fine with two coats to full coverage. I love this shade for summer. So bright and happy!


Caronia On-the-Go Swatch

On-the-Go is a fabulous teal green creme that is almost perfect in just one coat! When I first used On-the-Go a while back, it really did have me “on-the-go”. I went to several stores looking for a bottle for my sister and a couple of back-ups for myself. I love, love, LOVE this polish! I don’t like many green polishes, but I do love this cool dark teal.

First Crush

Caronia First Crush Swatch

First Crush is a very pretty, lilac purple creme. Who doesn’t love a pretty purple polish amiright? (Have I mentioned that purple is my favorite color to wear on my nails?) The formula on this one was just fine needing only 2 coats for full coverage. This one if perfect for all you girly girls out there!

Promotional image for Caronia Shades of Summer

This collection has sophisticated, work-safe shades, bold pops of color, and cooler hues, too. There is something for everyone, I’m sure! These polishes have been reformulated and are 3-Free and dry fairly quickly. They are sold individually in 8ml bottles for (SRP) Php31 ($0.69) each at local department stores and grocery stores. The durability of this polish for the price is well worth it. It’s definitely a great budget buy. You can follow Caronia on Facebook and Instagram to keep up with them and their products.

I hope you enjoyed this review and that you found my input helpful. Let me know in the comments which shade is your favorite. Keep your eye out for some nail art featuring these babies.

Have a great weekend and don’t forget to make someone smile!

30 Dec

Review: Girlstuff Forever Holiday Collection 2014 (Love, Hope, and Peace)


Any grand plans for the New Year? We were supposed to leave Cebu early yesterday morning to go out of town to be with some family on the next island over. But a tropical depression is passing through and has put a damper on our plans. The coast guard (wisely) has suspended ferries and boats between islands in the areas affected by the winds and rain. Perhaps we will be given the green light sometime today to go. Fingers crossed!

I’ve got a lovely collection to share with you today. Girlstuff Forever has released a glitter-packed, textured trio for the holidays, and I’ve got swatches right here! For each swatch, I applied a base-coat and two coats of polish. I didn’t apply topcoat since these polishes dry to a textured finish, but you could add topcoat for extra sparkle. I’ve included macro shots so you can see the glittery, textured goodness close up as well. Enjoy!

First up  in the Girlstuff Forever Holiday Collection is Love. Love is a pink jelly packed with tiny silver hex glitters and even smaller square glitters. This is the most girly shade of the collection, and I can see me rockin’ this on Valentine’s Day.

Swatch of Girlstuff Love Girlstuff Love macro shot

Hope is a very unique color. It is a greenish-yellow jelly base with the same tiny hex glitters and square glitters as Love. It is, sadly, not the most flattering color for my pinkish (cool) skin tone but I know that ladies with a warmer skin tone could really rock this. It is so pretty despite not being so flattering on me.

Swatch of Girlstuff Hope

Girlstuff Hope macro shot

Peace is my favorite of the trio. I guess I’m just a huge fan of blue polishes. Ha! Peace is a blue jelly base loaded with the same glitters as the other two, but it also includes a sprinkling of some bigger hex shaped glitters.

Swatch of Girlstuff Peace

Girlstuff Peace macro shot

As can be expected with glitter polishes, these take more work to remove than a crème polish would. Cleanup around the cuticle was very easy. Each of these polishes retails for Php 140.00. Girlstuff Forever is a cruelty-free brand which means they do not test on animals. The polishes are all quick-dry and are also 5-free which makes them perfect for our miniature fashionistas. Check out the Girlstuff Forever website to find a kiosk near you or to order directly online.

I hope your new year is filled with much love, hope, peace, laughter, and many smiles and fun manicures!


22 Nov

Two-for-one Sparkly Accent Nail

Hi lovelies!

I’ve got  two-looks-in-one for you this evening. First up, I’ve paired this lovely hot pink with a gold glitter accent nail. I like to use glitter as an accent nail when I don’t have the time or inspiration for nail art but I still want something flashy and interesting. Do you do this too? This pink is Pretty In Pink by Girlstuff Forever. It is a two-coater creme polish that dries fast and is so bright and fun to wear. It cleans up easily too.

GirlStuff Pretty In Pink with 24K sponged accent nail

For my accent nail, I chose 24K which is also by Girlstuff. The bottle is packed with remarkably sparkly holographic gold glitter suspended in a clear base. You could paint it onto your nail for the typical coverage of any glitter top coat. But, if you want the coverage I have, you will need to grab a makeup sponge. I put tape around my cuticle (to minimize glitter sticking to my finger) and put a drop of 24K on the sponge. Then I sponged that directly onto my nail and repeated the process until I was happy with the coverage. The great thing about this method of application is that you can get all the glitter on the nail and most of the clear base will be left behind in the sponge. So you can have full coverage without having to use 14 coats of glitter. 😉 Make sense? Finish it off with topcoat to seal your glitter and enjoy the sparklies! The accent nail took a bit of elbow grease to clean up, but that’s typical for glitter.

Girlstuff Blues with 24K sponged accent nail

After wearing Pretty In Pink for a few days, I decided to try out Blues, another one of my new beauties from Girlstuff. This navy blue creme is another two-coater that dries quickly with a great shiny finish and also cleans up easily. ♥

The more Girlstuff polishes I try, the more I love them. I’ve heard they are good for stamping too, so that is on my “things to try” list. I’ll let you know.

I hope you are having a great weekend. Make someone smile today!

06 Nov

CND Vinylux Weekly Polish Review

Hi, Dolls!

Today I’m going to share some swatches of (and my two cents about my first experience with) a couple of CND Vinylux Weekly Polishes that were sent to me a few weeks ago. This is going to be a wordy post, so please bear with me.

The CND Vinylux Weekly Polish is designed to be used as a two-step system. (1) Starting with clean nails, apply two coats of the Vinylux color of your choice, and (2) finish with one thin coat of Vinylux Weekly Topcoat. The pamphlet says you should not use a base coat as the polish has “adhesion promoters” to help the polish adhere to the nail and to prevent the pigments from coming into direct contact with the natural nail. Can it be? No staining? RAFO people! As for the top coat, it features CND’s “ProLight technology” which is designed to increase the durability of the top coat with exposure to natural light. Pretty cool huh? This top coat is supposed to prevent chipping, denting, scratching and dulling for up to a week of wear. I gather that this is something in between regular polish and gel polish.

CND Vinylux Weekly Polish – Swatches

Which polishes did I get, and what did think of them? First up is Midnight Swim (#131). It’s an extremely dark blue filled with shimmery particles of magic fairy dust that look just gorgeous when the light hits them. I WILL be using this polish for Nebula Nail Art very soon!

CND Vinylux Weekly Polish Midnight Swim swatch

The picture above is from my lightbox. The one below is the same polish under direct light. You can see the subtle shift in color from the change of lighting.

CND Vinylux Weekly Polish Midnight Swim

Next we have Tinted Love (#153), which is a lovely deep berry shade. It’s reddish and purplish at the same time! I love it! Please pardon the bubbles on my index finger. Totally a user error. I’m a goof and caught the brush on the edge of the bottle and was too busy chatting with Mr. Nailinator to notice the bubbles.

CND Vinylux Weekly Polish Tinted Love swatch

The Review

The formula on these two are amazing! They were so easy to apply—quite possibly the easiest polish application ever. The brush is  wider than the standard polish brush. The bigger size might be a problem for some people, but I personally love the extra width. A wider brush means fewer strokes to apply polish evenly on my nails. As promised in the pamphlet, both polishes were opaque in two coats. They dried quickly as well. I noticed the top coat has a stronger smell than most polishes I have used, so be sure to work in a well-ventilated area.

So how did the polish hold up over the test of time? These polishes did not last the whole 7 days for me. I wore them for 7 days without chipping, but I did start to see tip wear after about 4 days. I didn’t really expect them to stay pristine with my oh-so-pointy nail tips (and the fact that I keep house and am pretty hard on my nails). To test them out on some shorter nails, I got a helping hand or two from my mother—henceforth to be known here as The Queen Mother . While it didn’t last a full 7 days for her either, she was really happy with the polish and was impressed with the wear time and how it held up under all the tasks she regularly does at work and at home. Here is how my nails looked on day 5.

CND Vinylux Weekly Polish Tinted Love after 5 days

Not too bad, eh? I think they look pretty good for 5 days wear and tear. I’m gonna be honest and say that I really don’t like having pictures of my nails looking like this on the interwebz. See how dedicated I am to a thorough review? Now lets see how Tinted Love fared after 7 days!

CND Vinylux Weekly Polish Tinted Love after 7 days

Please don’t share this picture! Haha! It’s a far cry from my usual well-manicured look. The scratches are not so visible in person, but as you can see, there is quite a bit of tip-wear and scuffing on the once-shiny surface. These CND polishes did hold up better than most of the dark colors I have used. I have to compare them to other dark colors because, as you probably know, dark colors tend to show tip wear earlier because of the contrast to the light-colored natural nail. Upon removal, I’m happy to report that neither polish left any staining on my nails. Again, dark polishes (especially blue ones) tend to stain but these did not. Win!

Final Thoughts

It’s possible that since I did both of my swatches at night and rainy weather kept me indoors most of the testing period that I didn’t get the full benefit of the ProLight technology. I am curious to see if my results would be different if I had a few sunny days or a UV light to help strengthen the polish. CND Philippines told me that using their Scrub Fresh preparation could also help as it is formulated to help the polish adhere to the nail better. I’ll be testing that out soon, hopefully, and will let you know.

At PHP499 ($11) per bottle,  the price is what I would expect with an imported brand like this which makes it a luxury item for most. But CND polishes aren’t your average polishes, and they are marketed primarily for salons and beauty professionals. If you are interested in investing in your own CND Vinylux Weekly Polish or trying them out on your next mani/pedi day, you can get in touch with CND Philippines @cnd_ph on Instagram and Twitter or at CDNPhilippines on Facebook to order or to find a salon near you. I did a little looking online and found the following salons that apparently have CND products available for their services:

I’ve been told CND Philippines is working on setting up a website so keep an eye out for that as well.

If you read this whole post, you get a virtual cookie! 🙂 Thanks for sticking with it. I hope this information was helpful. Have you ever tried CND Vinylux or Shellac polishes? I have never tried gel polish before, but I have heard such good things about their Shellac treatment and would be interested to try it.

I’m off to go play with my little ones. I hope you have a joyful day and that you make someone smile today!

06 Oct

Girlstuff Masquerade Swatch and Review

Hi gals!

Do you own any textured polishes? I’ve noticed that the types of textured finishes you end up with vary significantly depending on the brand. Some are only slightly textured while others feel like you could use one nail to file down another. Ha! One of my favorite things about textured polishes is that you usually get two stunning looks in one bottle! I have several textured polishes by Girlstuff and I love every one of them.

Today I’m showing you Girlstuff Masquerade, and since it’s a great shade for the upcoming holidays, I thought I would put my two cents in on this polish with a quick review. Masquerade is a beautiful, red-orange jelly loaded with tiny gold glitter.
Two generous coats will get you full coverage and this nice textured look. Three coats is even better.

Girlstuff Masquerade no topcoat

Adding topcoat ups the shine factor significantly. The glitter comes alive and is so pretty.

Girlstuff Masquerade with topcoat

I love wearing it both ways. Which do you prefer?

Masquerade dries quickly and has a great formula that is easy to work with. Cleanup was so easy with my flat makeup brush. I wore it for several days with only minor tip-wear. Removal was just what you would expect from a polish with glitter in it. It took a bit more rubbing than a creme polish would but was not difficult by any means. The wear time on this polish is longer if you use topcoat. As you can see, one coat of topcoat doesn’t provide a glass like finish. But it still looks great. This beauty retails for 150 PHP. (approx. 3.50 USD)

I love polishes that are easy to work with and look amazing! Girlstuff polishes score extra points with me in that they are 5-free meaning they contain no toluene, formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate, formaldehyde resin, or camphor. They are perfect for my little girl who likes to have her nails looking pretty just like mommy. I’m thrilled to tell you that those of us living in Cebu will have access to the full selection from this brand very soon. In less than 3 weeks, Girlstuff Forever will be opening up a kiosk here in Cebu at Ayala. Yay!

How do you feel about textured polishes?

Have a fantastic day!
Hugs and sparkles,

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