Friday, December 20, 2019

Diamond Stamped Nails with Cuccio Colour Soirée Collection

Happy Friday, dear readers! I hope you've had a wonderful week and ready for the upcoming holidays! It's been a little crazy here with one kid getting really sick and down for the count for several days, and wouldn't you know it, I seem to have it as well. So far it isn't as bad as he had it, but I really could have gone without another round of illness to end out the year. As a result of being sick for three times within the past five to six weeks, I haven't done much by way of wearing and testing out makeup or doing my nails much. And to think I just bought some more stamping plates and nail art accessories that likely just won't be getting loved this year! That being said, I did manage to create a nail art look last weekend, and I wanted to get it posted before the holiday season has gone.

I had received Cuccio Colour's latest Soirée Collection in the middle of the madness, and I knew I had to create some fun nail art with it. The collection consists of eight shades in various red and silvery designs, making it a great collection not just for he holiday season, but to carry you through Valentine's Day as well! For today's post, I used three of the nail lacquers to create my diamond stamped nail art look. Check it out!

Press Sample

To create this look, I started off by painting my nails with 3, 2, 1, Kiss (red berry shimmer) and Just A Prosecco (silver with golden metallic flecks). Y'all! The formulas of these are incredible, and I'm wondering why I don't have a huge Cuccio stash yet! I found these to have a slightly thicker formula than the average mainstream polish, and I am living for it!

I loved the golden shimmers in 3, 2, 1, Kiss, so I opted to leave those nails alone. The gold flecks in Just A Prosecco are subtle but still present, so I opted to choose a stamped image that would let some of the gold shine through. To do this, I chose this fun diamond image from the Young Nail Caption Boho Bungalow stamping kit.

I used High Resolutions, a cherry red crème, also by Cuccio Colour to stamp onto my nails. While the colour is pretty pigmented, a single coat appears more of a berry shade than a red (although it is definitely a red-pink to begin with rather than a rich red hue).

I am really digging this combination. I was admittedly a little unsure about this collection as the colour options are so limited, but it's quite nice to have more options within a colour family to choose from to get just the exact one you have envisioned!

I may not be feeling so fabulous, but my nails sure have been cute this week! I just took this design off last night so I'm ready for another nail art look this holiday season; wish me luck!

Have you picked up any shades from Cuccio Colour's Soirée Collection? How do you like to pair red and silver together for holiday looks? I'd love to use some other shades from the collection and I'm still debating on how I want to pair them together.

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

Helpful Links

Connect with me on Social Media!

Thursday, December 12, 2019

Holiday 2019 Giveaway

Greetings, dear readers! December is quickly passing by, and I figured I better get up this giveaway post asap! I had originally planned to do an advent giveaway, but that time has come and gone. In truth, the holiday season is a difficult time for me, and I'm currently in survival mode. I've not been able to focus on the blog much; I'm really sorry about that! I'm not going to make any promises about the rest of the month because I don't think I'd be able to keep them. I just have to admit to myself that mentally I just cannot do it all right now and be ok with it. I still have a few posts I want to do this month. Here's hoping I can push through it! Until then, here's my holiday giveaway!

But what is it?

In the spirit of the holiday gifting season, it's just going to have to be a surprise! I will tell you there is a little bit of cosmetics, nail polish, and hair care items in this box. If you follow me on Instagram, I had hinted at one of the items a couple weeks ago, but the rest is a surprise. There are brands I enjoy and some handy items I use daily (the enclosed is new and unused, I promise!).

Please enter in the rafflecopter widget below. All the extra rules and details can be found there.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I wish I had the budget to buy gifts for every one of you; I truly appreciate all your support throughout the year!

Best of luck!

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

Connect with me on Social Media!

Friday, December 6, 2019

Colourful Snowflake Nail Art with Zoya Sensual

Press Sample

Happy Friday, dear readers! This has been a painfully long week, but I suppose that is to be expected the week after a holiday. It's been business as usual for the most part, although I've been hard at work with assorted crafting gift projects. I finished off a few things yesterday and am on track to finish up a couple more this weekend. I'm excited to get several packages in the mail early next week and not have to worry about that part of the holidays the rest of the month!

While it doesn't get particularly cold around here, and it's rare to get snow in town, I do like the idea of sparkling snow. I wanted to go in a different direction from traditional snowflakes, at the time being anyway, and opted to pull in some colour for my snowflake design. Several shades from Zoya's Sensual Collection were exactly what I had in mind; I wanted to give it a little more love before I really focus on their winter shades. I also went with a star design rather than traditional snowflakes. Check it out!

I started by painting my nails with KBShimmer Under Pressure for the nails that contain my snowflakes. I used Zoya Ashton for a dark accent nail.

My snowflake/star image is from the Pueen Fairytale Lover Stamping Plate. Because I wasn't using a separate snowflake design, I opted to use three shades at once on the plate to create a colourful look.

My snowflake/star pattern was created using Zoya shades Ripley, Elliot and Michaela.

I finished off my nails by topping them off with KBShimmer's new 5-free Free & Clear Quick Dry Top Coat.

I really love how this look turned out! I'm still likely to create a more traditional snowflake design this season, but I had a lot of fun with this one!

Have you been sporting any holiday or seasonal nail art this month? Do you have holiday-related plans this weekend? We're hoping to go get our tree tomorrow!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful day and enjoy the weekend!

Helpful Links

Connect with me on Social Media!

Monday, December 2, 2019

KBShimmer: Winter Is Coming to the December Polish Pickup

Press Sample

Greetings, dear readers, and happy Monday! I'm cutting it close with this post as the December Polish Pickup opens TODAY in just a few hours, but at least I didn't miss it! If you're eagerly anticipating the opening today, let me give you another look at two of the offerings available this month. KBShimmer is offering a nail polish and a sugar scrub; I'm not sure which one I enjoy the most! As I often start my manicures with a scrub, let's start off with that first. Let's do this!

Cocoa & Cookies Sugar Scrub

There's something special about heading outside to build a snowman, or to drag your sled to the top of a hill just to zoom back down on a crisp winter's day.  For me, making snow angels and getting into snowball fights made for the best outdoor fun.  But a day of winter play wouldn't be complete without heading inside for a warm cup of cocoa and a fresh cookie.

Cocoa & Cookies sugar scrub is inspired by the cold weather treats of the same name.  This scrub starts out with notes of warm steamed milk and rich chocolate.  A hint of vanilla and sugary sweetness along with the tan color of the scrub bring to mind fresh-baked sugar cookies. Like your favorite sprinkles, a hint of gold mica completes this yummy scrub.  For use all over your body, this scrub will help even the driest winter skin.

I've not kept it a secret that I love the KBShimmer sugar scrubs- they always smell so delicious and they leave my skin feeling oh-so-soft! I like to use them on my hands between manicures to slough off any dead skin that may be lingering around causing rough patches, and some make their way into my shower for full body exfoliation. I like to use these every 2 to three days in the shower. The scent selection is generally what determines if the scrub stays at my sink or  goes on the ledge in my shower stall.

I love baking cakes, cookies and brownies, but I'm not particularly fond of smelling like them. This is what intrigues me the most about this particular scent offering from KBShimmer. There is a slight sweetness to this fragrance, but it is far from too sweet. It's not too intense chocolate (although I wouldn't mind that!) for the cocoa aspect, and I agree with the description that the vanilla is subtle. It is a beautiful balance of warmth and sweetness, not leaning too far in either direction. While I originally thought this sugar scrub would end up staying on my sink for hand scrub use only, I adore the scent balance and will actually be enjoying this in the shower as well. While the scent is certainly there, it isn't too intense for my sensitive nose!

Retail: $10
No cap

Un-brrr-lievable Nail Polish

Growing up in Minnesota, we joked about having four seasons: almost winter, winter, still winter and road construction.  While it's not really that bad, Minnesotans have learned to embrace and even celebrate the cold.  One way we do that is with our annual Winter Carnival. Featured as its centerpiece is a giant ice castle constructed of ice blocks and ice walls, each colorfully lit for an amazing visual experience that can only be described as Un-brrr-lieveable!

Un-brrr-lieveable is a cool-toned polish that starts out as a rich purple hue.  When your hands are warm, the purple quickly shifts to a bold icy blue reminiscent of those majestic ice castles.  Iridescent flakes in tones of pink, purple, aqua, green and gold light up this wintery nail polish shade, while micro holo glitters add a hint of sparkle and shine.

I do NOT do cold weather, but I have to admit visiting an ice castle sounds pretty awesome and worth bundling up for one of these years! That said, I still love polishes inspired by cold weather, and this one is no exception. How gorgeous is this polish! I've a huge fan of flake-filled polishes with a matte finish, so since this is my blog, that's what you're gonna get the most of today!

The formula was really easy to work with, and I applied two coats to my nails for these photos. Under the bright light setup I can see a hint of visible nail line, but in normal lighting conditions, I didn't notice it at all. Those with longer nails or very white nail lines may want to use a third coat for opacity. Alternately, you can opt to layer it over a lighter shade. That leads to the question: do you layer over a light blue or a purple? I guess it depends on if you tend to lean more towards cooler or warmer temperatures naturally! I also added a layer of matte top coat for these photos.

I didn't want to leave you completely hanging, so here are a few photos where I added a glossy top coat (KBShimmer's new Free & Clear 5-free Quick Dry Top Coat). It's certainly pretty either way, although the shine fights with my light setup and glare some here. If you're a fan of blues and purples, this is a must have polish for your collection! My love of flakes has cooled off, no pun intended, but this one is fabulous! 

Retail: $10
No cap

KBShimmer has certainly contributed two fantastic options this month, and I'm not sure which one I enjoy more! Both of these will be available for purchase TODAY on the Polish Pickup website at 11am EST / 8am PST. They are using a different format regarding days this month, and it will remain open through Friday, December 6th.

Please keep in mind orders submitted through the Polish Pickup are submitted as a preorder; allow up to three weeks for shipping out to you. Unless your order contains exclusively domestic items that can be received by Polish Pickup headquarters quickly for earlier shipping, your packages likely will not make it in time to you for Christmas (for those of your celebrating). I've had my recent overnight and priority packages taking 5 days to get to me, and I'm not expecting it to improve with Black Friday weekend and Cyber Monday shopping items about to flood the postal service. I don't want to discourage anyone from shopping as there are incredible creations to choose from this month, but I want to make sure you're prepared in case you're shopping for a gift. Now if you're celebrating the 12 days of Christmas, which officially starts on Christmas day, you should be set!

Are you excited for the opening of the December Polish Pickup? What all are you planning to pic up this month? Are you a fan of sugar scrubs? Do you prefer Un-brrr-lievable with a matte or shiny finish? I'd love to hear from you!

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

Helpful Links
Facebook Group (Polish Pickup Pack):

Connect with me on Social Media!

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Turkey Trot and Thanksgiving Nail Art with Zoya Sensual

Press Sample

Happy hump day, dear readers, or at least what is left of it! I created a cute turkey inspired nail art look for my six-year old's Turkey Trot earlier today and Thanksgiving tomorrow. The weather has finally dropped below 70° here (barely), and my nude nail polishes from Zoya's Sensual Collection were in need of some more love. Check out my nail art look!

To create the look, I started off with Zoya shades Joss and Kinsley. I then used Zoya Foster to create my turkeys. I have the Thanksgiving stamping plate L001 from Born Pretty Store, and selected the running pattern to really get into the Turkey Trot mode. The images on this plate in general aren't very well etched, and this one was particularly bad, even with dedicated stamping polishes, but I was pretty happy with how these turned out.

My original image did include hearts, but I opted to remove them prior to stamping. Instead, I used hearts from the Love stamping Plate by Color Club with Zoya Rashida to add in my hearts.

As much as I liked this collection, it was lacking an orange and a green, so I pulled in other products for my little pumpkin. I started off by placing Pumpkin Stencils by What's Up Nails on my nail and filling in the open areas with Essie Say It Ain't Soho and KBShimmer Having A Gourd Time. I finished off my nails by topping off with KBShimmer's new 5-free Free & Clear Quick Dry Top Coat.

It's pretty unusual for me to stick with nudes when it comes to nail art looks, but I actually enjoy the way this turned out! It's subtle but fun, and my son was so excited that his school run inspired my nails. He even had to point my nails out to his friends when I arrived for the run!

After not doing much nail art lately, I was reminded how much I enjoy doing it. I'm not really one for New Year's resolutions, but creating nail art more frequently just might have to go on my list!

Are you celebrating Thanksgiving? Will you be eating a traditional turkey dinner or something different? We're actually doing shrimp and fish tacos tomorrow with grilled corn and I am excited!

Until next time, dear readers, have a wonderful night, and for those celebrating, have a great Thanksgiving Day!

Helpful Links

Connect with me on Social Media!

Monday, November 25, 2019

Black Friday with KBShimmer: Deals and the New License to Chill Winter 2019 Collection!

Press Sample

Greetings, dear readers, and happy Monday! It feels like it has been forever since I've posted to the blog! It's only been two weeks, but it feels like it was much longer with sickness taking over my household. Thankfully everyone's health has mostly returned to normal and I can hit the play button on blogging again.

With Thanksgiving Day upon us to be quickly followed with Black Friday, I wanted to jump start this week by sharing the upcoming License To Chill Collection by KBShimmer with you today. I always enjoy reading Christy's introductions to her collections, so I'm just going to let her take it away and share some swatches!

Winter can be full of joys: lights twinkling against a canvas of fresh-fallen snow, scents of cinnamon and pine filling many a home, and family and friends taking time away from their busy lives to enjoy each other's company. This season, we are embracing all things winter - from the snow that we hate to shovel, to the cozy times we spend relaxing at home. Whether you're over the river and through the woods, or binge watching shows on your living room couch, join us in celebrating the wintertime with KBShimmer's nine-piece License To Chill Collection, launching on Black Friday, November 29th, 2019!

License To Chill

The first snow of the year is magical: flakes dance in the chilly air and tempt us to run outside and stick out our tongues to catch that perfect bit of frozen wonder. After a few months though, those flakes become our license to chill indoors snuggled up with a blanket, close to a flickering fire and our favorite streaming service.

License to Chill is a sheer white crelly polish filled with iridescent flakes in red, orange, pink and gold. Like sparkling snow, the gleaming flakes in this delicate polish shine in the light.

Two coats over a white cream base, topped with Free and Clear Quick Dry Top Coat (5 Free)

My camera always freaks out when it comes to white polishes and never seems to capture all the details, and that really bums me out! This is such a pretty shade and the subtle colours from the flakes are much more apparent in real life. I will note this is a little on the sheer side, so layering over a base as I have is going to be your best bet to avoid visible nail line, unless you want to layer on more coats, that is. I did find the flakes to be of the firmer variety, and this means making sure coats are dry and applying with a slightly thicker coat. Using too thin coats can cause the flakes to pull up the base layers as they drag on your nails. It's by no means a deal breaker, but it is something to keep in mind to make sure your application goes smoothly.

Everyday I'm Shovelin'

When the weather turns cold and snow has fallen, there are so many fun things to do outdoors to keep you active: skiing, snowboarding, sledding, shoveling- wait, that last one doesn't sound so fun! Breaking out the shovel was my least favorite chore. The snow seemed to appear daily. Even when the sky was blue, flakes would dance around in the wind and cover the sidewalk all over again. Everyday I'm Shovelin' is a nod to fresh-fallen snow.

Micro silver holo flakes sparkle like falling snowflakes. With a change of viewing angle, this sky blue multichrome morphs into a royal blue and a bold purple.

One coat over KBShimmer Take Back Ctrl, topped with Free and Clear Quick Dry Top Coat (5 Free)

I love the idea of snow: the beautiful flakes, the crisp cleanness as it first envelops the ground, and the distinct sound it makes on a quiet night; this, my dear readers, is where my love of snow ends. I did move to the desert area of Arizona for a reason! There is no snow shoveling in my game plan, but I certainly appreciate this beauty! It can be built up on its own in three coats, but I opted to layer it over a muted purple hue to help key in on that specific colourway for these photos. You can easily layer it over other shades if you prefer or wear it on its own.

Under Cover

Thick socks, flannel pants, and a warm blanket could be my winter uniform. The chilly air wants to seep into my bones, but being under my blanket and snuggling with one of my cats quickly warms me inside and out. Under Cover is a nod to my favorite blanket.

A rich wine color, this jewel-toned polish is loaded with holographic pigment for a strong linear holo flair.

Two coats topped with Free and Clear Quick Dry Top Coat (5 Free)

There is something about the winter season that makes me want to wear boysenberry hues on my nails, and I was delighted to see this one join the KBShimmer lineup! I may not wear holographic nail lacquers as much as I once did, but this is one shade that is required as a holo and I am living for it! I definitely needed two coats, but if you tend to use thick coats, you may find one carefully applied just might be enough for you.

Living the Hygge Life

While this lifestyle concept has Danish origins, there is no denying that we in the USA find every way to adopt it whenever winter rolls around. We almost instinctually seek out comforts and simple pleasures this time of year, like a crackling fire, candlelight, warm bread, cocoa and cosy pj's. Like receiving a hug from our surroundings: that's living the hygge life!

Living The Hygge Life is a vibrant pine green polish. Like the flicker of flames, a strong shimmer shifts though hues of red, copper and orange, while other angles will bring out shades of lime and gold. A scattering of holo sparkles completes this comfortable shade.

Two coats topped with Free and Clear Quick Dry Top Coat (5 Free)

I knew I was going to like this shade when I saw it in the bottle, and I was not disappointed! One of my favorites from the collection, Living The Hygge Life makes me think of holiday trees that have been strung up with lights carefully placed in the branches. I'm not sure if I was more excited about the flashes of orange or the ultra vibrant greens at other angles, but there is no doubt this is a much have for any green fan this season!

I'm sMitten

I love being warm - which is a problem growing up in Minnesota where the air can freeze hot chocolate in minutes - so I've learned the art of bundling up to ward off the chill. Coats, hats, scarves and mittens are my go-to attire when the temperature drops.

I'm sMitten is a pale lilac shade perfect for chilly winter day. This delicate color has a color-shifting shimmer that shows off hues of red, orange, gold and lime. A dusting of holo glitter completes this sparkly shade.

Two coats topped with Free and Clear Quick Dry Top Coat (5 Free)

Have you ever had a polish that seemed so unassuming that took your breath away upon application? That's exactly how I felt when I applied That's sMitten to my nails. Sure, I thought it looked pretty, but I wasn't expected to be blown away by it. There is just something so delicate and feminine about this nail lacquer that spoke to me. The first coat was a little patchy an uneven, something I generally expect from this type of shade, but a slightly thicker second coat evened out my nails perfectly.

All Downhill From Here

When asked to go skiing, I loved to say I would come and, "rock the chalet," because I never actually liked to ski. I would feel so out of control while zooming downhill on the slopes and could not wait to reach the bottom where the skis would come off and I'd get to sit in front of a cozy fire with a hot cup of cocoa. I have to admit, though, the snowsuits were cute!

All Downhill From Here is a vibrant blue shade that flips to a bold indigo and shows off an aqua shimmer.

Two coats topped with Free and Clear Quick Dry Top Coat (5 Free)

I love wearing blue polish over the winter, and this is exactly my type of blue Christmas I want to be having! I love the colour shift in this one, especially since at more extreme angles it pulled a grape purple hue on me. The formula of this one was a little thicker than I generally see from KBShimmer, although my cap did seem loose so it might have thickened during transit to me. A couple drops of thinner made this my perfect consistency quickly!

Stay Toasty My Friends

From rosé to ale to cider or cola, meeting up with friends for drinks can add cheer to any season. Spending time catching up, reminiscing and sharing laughs is a perfect way to end a chilly winter's day.

Stay Toasty My Friends is a warm, rosé-colored chrome that quickly shifts into golden shades of champagne. A strong pink shift and micro bits of holo glitter complete this toasty shade.

Two coats topped with Free and Clear Quick Dry Top Coat (5 Free)

Now this is one fun polish, and not just because of the name and the inspiration! I rarely gravitate towards rosé hues as I don't find them the most flattering on me, but the golden shift on this baby is positively exquisite! It seemed pretty sheer with the first coat, but the second coat seemed to make my nails opaque enough. With my camera and bright light setup, I can see a hint of nail line and could have used a third, but unless you have long nails or very white nail line, you likely will find two coats to be enough. I really want to play with this one and try layering it over other base shades!

I Feel Pine

I'm so thankful for pine. That bit of green peeking through a white (or gray), snow-covered world adds a pop of color to the otherwise drab hues of winter. Indoors, pine offers a scent that is synonymous with the holiday season, and is the perfect way to deck the halls.

I Feel Pine is a shifty magnetic shade with a strong and deep emerald shimmer. In some angles and lighting, a dark purple hue comes out to play. The magnetic shimmer dances though shades of pink, peach, gold and rose, while bits of holo sparkle and shine.

Two coats topped with Free and Clear Quick Dry Top Coat (5 Free)

Some people love than, some people aren't fans at all, but there is no question that KBShimmer knows how to knock it out of the park when it comes to magnetic nail polishes! As for me, it kind of just depends on the final colour combination, and this one is fabulous! The added touch of holographic flair really takes it to the next level for me. The combination with magnetic effect makes this anything but your typical pine green polish!

Under Pressure

Life is crazy: work, school, friends, family, laundry, cleaning, cooking - the list never ends! Whenever we find a shortcut that saves time, we must embrace it! That's why I love my shiny pressure cooker! The many meals you can make in that chrome-like pot (thanks to thousands of recipes online) ensure that the daily pressures you feel won't have to come from making dinner.

Under Pressure is a pale silver, almost chrome polish. This foil-like shade is loaded with linear holo goodness.

Two coats topped with Free and Clear Quick Dry Top Coat (5 Free)

I'm definitely slow to join the party, but I got an Instant Pot less than a month ago! I'm still learning the ins and outs of using it and have had a mix of successes and flops after following recipes, but my Instant Pot is already used often in my house! You can never go wrong with a gorgeous silvery hue this time of year, so Under Pressure is sure to be getting as much love as its inspiration!

The License To Chill Collection will be launching on the KBShimmer website this Friday; each shade will retail for $10. In addition to the new shades, KBShimmer will also be launching the new Free and Clear Quick Dry 5-Free Top Coat. Free & Clear will retail for $6.

Black Friday Promotion
Black Friday is the official start of holiday shopping season, and with several people to shop for, you do have to watch your budgets and spend wisely to avoid the post-holiday debt. This year, KBShimmer is holding a sale for Black Friday weekend! Starting Friday, November 29th, use the code BLACKFRIDAY25 to save 25% off any order on This code can be used on any polishes, including shades from the new License To Chill Collection, sugar scrubs, lotions, and whatever your heart desires on the KBShimmer website.

The sale ends at 11:59pm on Monday, December 2nd. Discounts do not apply to shipping, taxes, or gift certificates. Not valid on prior purchases. Please allow 7-10 business days for your order to ship. Delivery by Christmas is guaranteed on all orders placed during the sale.

Are there any specific shades from the License To Chill Collection that have caught your attention? What all are you planning to pick up from the KBShimmer Black Friday Weekend Sale? I'd love to hear from you!

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

Helpful Links

Connect with me on Social Media!

On Instagram

© Laugh, Love, Contour. Made with love by The Dutch Lady Designs.