Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Lyn B Designs and The Jedi Wife: The Tudor Roses Collection

Press Sample

Good morning, dear readers! I am so excited to be sharing this post with you! I have written and revised it numerous times, and I decided that today is the day no matter what. I hope you're ready for something pretty awesome! Let's do this!

Recently, Jenna from Lyn B Designs posted in her LynB Loves Facebook group asking if members had specific requests or wants for future collection themes. I had suggested going in a different direction from the fandom-inspired collections with a history-inspired collection, and we were pleasantly surprised that the suggestion was such a big hit in the group. We discussed the idea further and decided to do a King Henry VIII themed collection. While there is obviously so much inspiration to use for such a collection, no Tudor-themed collection would be complete without recognizing his six wives. The Tudor Roses Collection had begun!

With such a fascinating subject for this collection, I had polish designs planned in no time! I sent my ideas off to Jenna, and she did a fabulous job bringing my visions to life! On to the beauties!

Katherine of Aragon
Two coats

A royal purple crelly base with hidden golden shimmer and intense linear holo

Retail: $10

Katherine of Aragon was a Spanish-born princess, and she was a royal both by blood and her nature from the moment she took her first breath. Older than Henry, she was originally married to his brother Arthur and was widowed six months later. Henry VIII married her after she was declared a virgin and the quest to produce male heirs began. Unfortunately, Katherine did not provide the coveted sons and Henry's eyes went elsewhere. Katherine was noble and eloquent throughout the end of the marriage and their divorce, and her divorce speech to Henry is arguably the most famous of the Tudor period. With such a strong and royal person, Katherine's polish naturally needed to be purple with subtle golden shimmer to capture her queenly state. It applied very nicely for me, but be careful not to overwork it as it does get a little thick if you do.

Anne Boleyn
Three coats plus top coat

A blood red jelly base filled with linear holo, red micro glitter, and a hidden red shimmer

Retail: $10

The marriage of Henry VIII to commoner Anne Boleyn was controversial to say the least! Henry's divorce from Katherine was not a quick and easy process, and in order to free himself of the marriage, the devout Catholic had to break from the Catholic church and create the Church of England in order to marry Anne. As a result, Anne was hated by many. While rumors of a goiter on her neck and the sixth digit on her hand are likely false and made to slander her name, commentary about her quick temper is widely believed to be true. Anne was highly educated for a woman at the time, and she was a great influence on Henry. Unfortunately, she was unable to produce a male heir and was accused of adultery and incest. Her marriage to Henry ended with her beheading by a hired French swordsman. Ironically, Anne's lowly daughter Elizabeth is often declared to be one of England's greatest rulers. Anne's polish needed to be bold and striking, hence the choice of red jelly and shimmer. The red micro glitter was added to represent the flash of temper in her eyes. The polish applies quite nicely although it is a little patchy at two coats. The third coat smoothed it out nicely.

Jane Seymour
Three coats plus top coat

A dove grey crelly base with a hint of blue shimmer, golden flecks, and gold micro glitter

Retail: $8

Jane is delicate and sweet, and every bit Anne's opposite. Henry's affair with Jane began while he was still married to Anne, and he was taken with her quiet and obedient manner. She was also Anne's opposite in appearance as well. While Anne had dark hair and eyes and olive skin, Jane was pale with blonde hair. Jane is said to have been Henry's most loved queen because she provided him with his son and heir, hence the blue shimmer. Jane paid the ultimate price in providing the son and died shortly after giving birth. This polish is a subtle beauty. It is a little patchy at two coats, but the third coat evened it out. It is on the sheerer side so you may need a fourth coat if you have longer nails and wish to avoid visible nail line.

Anne of Cleves
Two coats plus top coat

A taupe base loaded with golden shimmer, gold galaxy holo, and peachy pink glass flecks.

Retail: $8

Anne of Cleves had it better than most! Henry didn't find her attractive enough for him and called her a Flander's Mare. Henry's marriage to Anne was a political tactic to have the German Protestant states on his side and the Catholic France and Spain had formed an allegiance against England. Poor Anne had it rough with being so obviously unwanted by the king, but she reportedly took it all in stride and was good natured and kind. She wisely accepted the king's divorce proposal and remained in England as the king's "beloved sister". Jenna went in a slightly different direction from my design with her own spin on Anne of Cleves to create this sparkling beauty. The application was really easy but be careful not to overwork this one. It does dry to a gritty texture so you'll need to add a couple coats of top coat if you want a smooth surface on your nails.

Katherine Howard
Two coats plus top coat

A light pink base loaded with silver and golden shimmer

Retail: $8

Katherine was flirty and thirty years younger than the king. Henry was reported to come alive again when he started courting her. A foolish and promiscuous woman, Katherine was cousin to Anne Boleyn with a poorly influenced upbringing. Thrust into Henry's view by her title-grubbing family, Katherine was inexperienced with politics and severely overestimated Henry's love for her. She was caught having an affair and was crudely beheaded by the ax for her treason. Katherine Howard applied nicely for me, but again, you do want to take care not to overwork it as the polish may get thick and goopy.

Catherine Parr
Three coats plus top coat

A forest green crelly base with silver galaxy holo

Retail: $8

Catherine Parr was the sixth and final wife of Henry VIII; she was widowed twice before marrying him. Henry might have jinxed himself with this choice as she outlived him and became thrice-widowed with his death. Representing life and survival, Catherine's base shade certainly needed to be green! Her marriage to Henry was performed privately and without ceremony, and I didn't envision her being a wildly flashy shade. Jenna used my green suggestion and added her own take to the beautiful Catherine Parr. This polish is a little on the sheer side with some bald patches at two coats, but the third coat leveled it out perfectly. In spite of all the glitters, the finish wasn't very gritty and I only needed a single coat of top coat for a smooth finish. I apologize for the super-blurred closeup photo- my camera refused to take a focused image with all the holo glitters!

Tudor Rose
over China Glaze Pink or Swim
One coat plus top coat

A clear base topper with gold, green, and red flecks with white, red, and burgundy glitter.

Retail: $8

Even though there were six wives, this collection felt incomplete without the addition of this seventh and final polish. While the Tudor rose was adapted by Henry's father by cojoining the white and red roses of the feuding York and Lancaster families, it felt a fitting conclusion to the collection of Henry VIII's queens. This is a beautiful topper, and I adore the flashes of colour! It applied perfectly for me and does dry to a slightly textured finish that can easily be remedied with a quick coat of top coat.

I am loving this collection, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do! I think each shade represents what is known about each of the wives well, and the range of finishes certainly captures the range of personalities. While I personally find myself identifying more with Anne Boleyn as a person, I think the polish Jane Seymour may be my surprising favorite from the collection.

The Tudor Roses Collection launches April 1st at 7 pm EST at the Lyn B Designs Etsy shop located here.

What do you think of the shades in this collection? Which are your favorites? I'd love to hear from you!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful day!

Monday, March 28, 2016

Press Release: China Glaze Lite Brites for Summer 2016


Brighten Up with 1980s Inspired Summer 2016 Collection

When it comes to bold, in-your-face beauty looks, no decade trumps the 1980s. Individuality was expressed through a variety of trends but one thing was constant: neon! Blindingly bright colours exploded in multiple patterns, and nails and makeup were loud and proud. This summer, China Glaze® is back FROM the future with its Lite Brites collection, a nod to the audacious spirit and outspoken style of the ‘80s with 12 all new bold neon crèmes and shimmers.

The China Glaze® Lite Brites collection includes:  

·       Hot Flash – Smokin’ hot crimson shimmer

·       Bite Me – Fiercely fluorescent watermelon crème

·       I’ll Pink to That – Bodacious neon fuchsia crème

·       Lip Smackin’ Good – Bubblicious neon pink crème

·       Papa Don’t Peach – Coral peach with iridescent copper glitter

·       None of Your Risky Business – Electric tangerine crème

·       Whip It Good – Brilliant banana yellow crème

·       Lime After Lime – Light bright neon lime crème

·       I Got a Blue Attitude – Deep blue-violet crème

·       What I Like About Blue – Serene sky blue shimmer

·       Let’s Jam – Shimmering orchid

·       We Got the Beet – Go-go grape with iridescent copper shimmer

Live out loud – and in colour – with the China Glaze® Lite Brites collection, available in April 2016 at Ulta and Sally Beauty Supply.  MSRP $7.50 for individual shades.

For more information, please visit www.chinaglaze.com or follow China Glaze on Facebook (@ChinaGlazeOfficial), Instagram (@ChinaGlazeOfficial), Twitter (@ChinaGlaze) and Pinterest (pinterest.com/chinaglaze).

Ellagee: Three Years of Sparkle Collection

Happy Monday, dear readers! The plague has definitely taken hold of my household. Ok, that might be a slight exaggeration, but everyone is sick so we had a very low key weekend while we created a fabulous harmony of coughing, sneezing, sniffling, and moaning fits. I had planned to get this post written up last week, but with everyone is different stages of ick, unfortunately it couldn't happen. I'm going to take off writing this post while I still can as my littles are resting. Let's go!

Ellagee is turning three, and to celebrate, Laura, the creative genius behind the brand, is releasing the Three Years of Sparkle Collection. This ten piece collection includes it's namesake shade and nine polishes created in collaboration with several bloggers that have worked with Ellagee over the years. I love to see what inspires fellow bloggers, and I hope you enjoy this collection as much as I do! Let's check it out! 

Three Years of Sparkle
Two coats plus top coat

A ruby pink jelly with tons of hot pink/violet shifting iridescent micro flakes and flashes of gold.

This photos just do not do this shade justice! It is sparkly and absolutely gorgeous in person! The formula was fantastic, and I know this shade will be getting a lot of love from me!

Sea of Tranquility
Two coats plus top coat

A bright turquoise jelly with translucent green mini flakes and copper micro flakes.
Created by @jediwife.

If you've beeb following my blog for a couple months, you've already seen my contribution to this collection. Sea of Tranquility was originally created to celebrate my blog turning four. I love for my customs to be available for others to enjoy so when Laura asked me if I wanted to design a shade for this collection, I just had to stick with this beauty. It was designed to be sheer to evoke the sensation of looking through the ocean to the sand below. Against my skin tone, it is pulling a little more green, but it will look more blue against cooler skin tones. The formula is fabulous, and I love this shade so much!

A Little Bit of Monica
Two coats plus top coat

A deep blue jelly with green/gold/fuchsia ultrachrome flakes and a bit of silver holo microglitter.
Created by Moni's Mani

This polish is gorgeous! It has so much depth, and I adore the additional flashes of colour from the flakes! It also applied like a dream and is just a fantastic polish all around!

Drunk On The Good Life
Two coats plus top coat

A coral/pink crelly with a rainbow of ultrachrome shifting flakes and a bit of silver holo microglitter.
Created by My Nail Polish Obsession.

Cocktails, anyone? This shade makes me think of the beverages I whip up for myself when the weather gets warm! I love a good mojito, and I love to add either strawberries or watermelon when I make them. This is such a pretty polish for the spring! The formula was pretty easy to work with overall although I did have a couple flakes give me a little bit of trouble on my ring finger. I recommend taking a toothpick and just pulling off the occasional troublemaker rather than overworking your polish so you get a smoother finish.

Two coats plus top coat

A medium blue toned grey jelly with green/agua and purple/blue translucent chameleon flakes and bit of silver holo microglitter.
Created by McPolish/.

This shade is fabulous! Grey polishes can sometimes be a little underwhelming, but the additional chameleon flakes have stolen my heart. It is a fun little twist to the normal grey polishes, and it is a great shade for when you want a muted palette cleanser for your nails. The formula was also perfect!

Pink Me!
Three coats plus top coat

A clear base packed with shades of pink and silver microglitter.
Created by I Feel Polished.

So much sparkle! You can always choose to layer Pink Me! over a base shade as a dense glitter topper, but I wanted lots of sparkle on my nails. I was easily able to apply this strategically with just three coats to have full nail coverage. It does dry to a gritty finish due to all the glitters so you'll need to use a couple layers of top coat to get a smooth finish.

Plum Foolery
Two coats plus top coat

A bright red-violet with a touch of scattered holo and hot pink mini flakes.
Created by Cosmetic Sanctuary.

As mush as I love extreme linear holos, I also have a special place in my heart for more subtle holo polishes. Plum Foolery is beautiful, and I love the additional hot pink mini flakes flashing as light hits my nails. The formula was flawless and it applied beautifully.

Suger Suger, How'd You Get So Fly? 
Two coats plus top coat

A medium toned nude with scattered holo, blue/violet/copper ultrachrome flakes, and hot pink shimmer.
Created by suger23.

This name is a winner! Every time I see the name or think about this polish, I cannot help but sing it out. It is such a gorgeous nude with that little something extra that makes it awesome! I had no applications issues with this beauty as the formula was perfection!

Three coats plus top coat

A clear base packed with iridescent shimmer and mini flakes plus clear holo/iridescent microglitter and a touch of Spectraflair holo.
Created by colorsutraa.

Sutraalessence is such a stunning shade, and I just had to wear it alone! Simply put, this polish just feels magical, and I love this look, even with a little visible nail line showing. If you prefer a more opaque look, this can easily be layered over your choice of base colour. The formula was on point and it applied wonderfully.

Teal The Fat Lady Sings
Three coats plus top coat

A teal jelly with a blend of teal, blue, and green microglitter and bright purple shimmer.
Created by Plump and Polished.

I am so excited about this particular shade! The teal is gorgeous on its own, but it is the bright purple shimmer that sets it apart from other teal microglitters. It is such a fun little twist, and I love all the sparkle in this beauty! Like the rest of this collection, Teal The Fat Lady Sings applied nicely for me, and it smoothed out perfectly with top coat.

The Three Years of Sparkle Collection will release on March 30 at 6 pm CST on the Ellagee website located hereThe full collection will be available for $108.00. This discounted price includes the polish Three Years of Sparkle free! Individual shades will retail for $12.00 each.

Be sure you're following me on Instagram so you can enter my current giveaway to win Three Years of Sparkle and Sea of Tranquility! A winner will be selected and posted before the launch on Wednesday!

What do you think of this collection? What are your favorites? I'd love to hear from you!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful day!

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