Sunday, 30 September 2012

Accessorize Utah

Hi Everyone,

Today I would like to show you a polish that I purchased back in June, alongside two of my favourite Accessorize polishes, Colorado and Soft Jade.

Top Tip: whenever you buy Accessorize polishes, buy more than one!

It's been in my 'Nail Files' for ages now, as you will tell by the swatches, but it was definitely one to save for Autumn... it's the colour of crispy golden leaves that have fallen from the trees, and has a golden pink shimmer, that reminded me of the sun coming up on a crisp September morning. How poetic of me! Despite the fact, that a dull, wet grey would have been more appropriate for Autumn so far. And who am I kidding, for Summer too...

Anyways, enough rambling from me, have some pretty pictures instead!

This required three coats in total, as the formula was 'OK'. Not amazing, and not terrible - and to be fair, not as good as some of my other Accessorize polishes. Don't let that put you off though - sometimes a little bit of hard work can really pay off - and this is a great example.

As you can see, when the light hits it, it brings out that gorgeous shimmer and really makes this quite a special polish. It's certainly not like anything else in my stash!

What do you think? Do you have any Accessorize favourites? I am feeling the need to buy some more, if truth be told!

Let me know!

Love Charlotte x

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Nails and Tales Favourites: Barry M Gold Foil

Hi Everyone,

Today I would like to share with you, one of my favourite polishes for nail art and colour manicures. Barry M's Gold Foil has been around for a while now, but it is one of my firm favourites.

It's a metallic finish, which despite having a few brush marks, dries to a lovely bright golden colour. It's a very versatile shade too, which will look great all year round - I have used it for Christmas manicures, and worn it with a tan in the Summer. The formula dries very quickly, and looks great in two coats - one is normally enough, but an extra one for luck never hurt anyone!

I find that this polish is also fantastic when used with a dotting tool too, like in this nail art example.

I have quite a considerable collection of Barry M polishes now, but this is definitely the best for me! It's the only Gold colour I go back to time after time, and recommend it to anyone!

It normally retails for around £3.99, which is an absolute steal. It can be found in Boots, Superdrug and Asda, as well as in various online retailers.

Do you have any trusty nail art polishes? Any recommendations??

Let me know!

Happy polishing,

Love Charlotte x

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Swatches of Summer - The Freebies Edition

Hi Everyone,

After the rigmarole of my PC being naughty, and the relief of not losing everything on it, I found myself having a good old nosey through my 'nail files'. I managed to find a couple of pictures of polishes I had swatched during the Summer, but not actually given them their own post. So I guess we could call this an honourable mentions page haha!!

First up, the rather wonderful Plush Pink from Leighton Denny.

A Leighton Denny polish, for free? Awesome. I so should have got them all, but at the time I was rather un-moneyed. So I got just one, but I'm glad I chose this one!

It's bright, glossy and ever so PINK! And it has a fantastic formula. This is roughly two coats, but I think I could have managed this in one slightly thicker coat. I have come to the conclusion that I would have paid full price for this. Every time I see a Leighton Denny stand, I am drawn to it like a moth to a flame, and each time I pick it up I call myself a silly, as I already have it!

If you want it too, it's £11. And worth it.

Next are a pair of Ciaté polishes! I do LOVE magazine freebies - I'm sure you can see that haha! And I am quite fond of Ciaté polishes - I love the extra detail of the bow on the bottle. It shows that the extra thought went into the design, and I appreciate that!

This one is a real beauty and is called Purple Sherbet! A name as fun as the polish itself! And one that makes me really want a Sherbet Dib Dab!

It is a gorgeous mid-toned lilac - not too washy and not too dark. Perfect to slot into my collection, as I didn't have anything quite like it. Now I do! Yay!! This has a nice formula, but is pretty sheer and needed three coats for decent coverage. And I apologise for the unattractive nick in my ring finger, but I was attacked by a monster!

Look at the claws on the vicious beast! So wild! And a bit gorgeous, even if I do say so myself! Anyway, back to the reason we're all here!!

Next is Bon-Bon, a rather sweet offering! And a rather lady-like colour, if you ask me! Oooh, nails like a grown up!

So... the colour.... you tell me?! I would have said it's a dusky pinkish colour. But it's also griege-ish. And in some lights, it's a grilac. It's not a duochrome or anything, just a basic creme polish, but I find it so hard to define it to one colour. The formula was nice the first time I used it and took two coats, but the second time, it was a little bit streaky and needed three. Still, I can't complain as it's a lovely nude-ish shade, and a great way to stay on the nude trend without having mannequin hands!

So there we have it, my favourite freebies from the last couple of months, all deserving of an honourable mention!

Did you manage to get hold of any of these?

Let me know!

Love Charlotte x

Friday, 7 September 2012

Belle Gel Nails: Cerise

Hi Everyone,

I hope you are all well! Sorry I haven't posted in a while, I've been so busy (and tired) with work lately. Anyway, I have scrounged together time to give myself another gel manicure - this time with a coloured gel.

The people from Belle Gel were kind enough to send me a few more colours to try out *happy dance* and so here I am! The biggest issue I had here, was deciding which colour to go for...

A typical problem chez Nails and Tales haha!!

As we are scrounging the last few days of Summer out of September, I had to go with the gorgeous bright pink: Cerise! I am often a wishful thinker, and so bright nails might encourage bright days... You never know! If we have some additional sunshine, you can thank me haha!!

(Just for funsies, at this point, my PC went FUBAR. So I apologise for how late I am in posting of any description, but I have been trying to retrieve all my stored pictures. I started this on Tuesday morning. It's now Friday...  Make sure you back your shiz up people, I am very lucky to have not lost everything. And very lucky that I have a spare laptop for my blogging / Internet fun!)

So, on with the gels! If you read this post, you will have already seen my initial review of the product and application. I'm not going to bore you with the same text over again, I'm just going to show you some pretty pink nails!

Very shiny, yes?

The pink itself is very lovely - it's bright, and blue toned, and just an extra hint of red. I've been wearing them since Monday, and they look fab! The colour really suits my skin tone! I find this shade to be fun, but still elegant - which is great for work (for me anyway!)

The application guide suggests a coat of clear, two coats of colour, and another coat of clear. This leaves for a very glossy finish! My only slight, concern was that the coloured gel seemed to shrink on top of the still tacky clear gel, as you can see from the few gaps I have. I don't think it's massively noticeable; I noticed because I had taken extra care when applying the colour to cover as much nail as possible! By the time curing had finished, it had shrunk! 

The next time I try a colour application, I think I'll try to cure the clear base for 2-3 minutes, instead of 30 seconds, to see if that helps the colour stay put a bit better! I think that this is the type of thing where practise really makes perfect, if you are a complete perfectionist. On the other hand, I'm not sure everyone would scrutinise as much as me, and just be glad of a chip free mani for up to two weeks!

Despite this, I have definitely enjoyed wearing the Cerise gels for the last few days. I love the colour, I love the glossy finish, and I love the simplicity of application. The only thing I don't love, is this:

That's a 70% gel lift on my left thumb nail. I went to bed last night, and it was fine. I wake up this morning, and there is a slice across my nails where the gel has split. Upon further investigation, most of it had lifted.

I would LOVE to know what I did in my sleep last night ;)

Now I have the dilemma... re-gel my thumb, or accent nail time??!

So, if you have any ideas why my gel lifted, or what the hell I did last night, let me know! I don't want to make the same mistake next time haha!

Regardless of the lift, (which I know can happen with a professional application too), I'm still a bit in love with the Belle Gel kit. I love this colour too - and if you are a fan of pink, buy it now!! I can't stop looking at my nails, and marvelling at how glossy they are. I'm not bored, even after 5 days - so you know it has to be good!

I personally can't wait to try the other colours... Yes Mocha, I mean you!

Love Charlotte x

Additional Info:

Starter Kit £59.95 from, currently with free postage and packing on orders over £40.

Additional gels (12 colours available including Cerise) at £12.95 each.
The gel sent to me was a PR Sample, but as you can see, all thoughts and reviews are my own. I am not affiliated with anyone, nor do I ever intend to be anything other than 100% honest.