Monday, January 30, 2012

Nina Ultra Pro Ink-ling hints at how well it goes with white (snow).

Isn't it funny how people have so much influence on each other without anyone actually realizing just how much exactly? Oh, don't worry, I won't delve into psychology and sociology, with all the intricacies of human interactions. I'll leave that to the experts. What I'm alluding to is far more simpler than that. See, a few posts back, Liz commented that Color Club Shabby Drab would make for such a pretty pairing with white cashmere sweaters (or white knitwear in general, I guess, but that's what she said so we'll stick to that). I hadn't even thought of it that way. Silly fashion retarded me. Of course it would look amazing with white! I, then, scrambled to search my stash for any other colors that might be deemed acceptable in that same category. I thought it would be timely as, if the weather men are to be believed, we were in for a bit of snow. This is what I found:

Pretty greblurple digits are part of what makes (a white) winter (wonderland) a good thing.

Friday, January 27, 2012

OPI Mermaid's Tears are of joy and not sorrow.

After a spell of sporting vampy, dark shades, I had a hankering for pretty spring heralding colors to brighten up the dreary gray Toronto mornings. If you ask me, I prefer the white of snow to the grey of impending rain. Never mind that I used to live in a tropical island where the chance of rain on any given day was never lower than 50%. That cold, white stuff that falls from the sky is infinitely more magical than sloshing about in the damp, and huge puddles. Inspired by the new spring releases and all the lovely pops of color, I brought out a spring 2011 shade that I hadn't gotten around to wearing yet:

I definitely have spring in the brain.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Nail Art Wednesday: Red and Gold Ruffian Nails

I'm spoiling you this week. You get not one, but two nail art posts to celebrate the year of the dragon! This was supposed to be the mani I'd be sporting while reveling in festivities and stuffing my face silly with abalone, lobster and char siu (barbeque pork). I did a dry run (which is what you'll see in the next few photos) but realized it didn't quite have the Asian feel I wanted it to have. So it was back to the drawing board for me. Now, I'm not one to waste photographed manis (and Hammie insisted I honor the promise of nail art on Wednesdays) so here you go, my attempt at a reverse french; otherwise known as a ruffian manicure:

Red and gold had the makings of a great Chinese New Year mani!

Monday, January 23, 2012

We wish you a prosperous Year of the Dragon!

In lieu of the usual polish review on Mondays, we decided to showcase my Chinese New Year mani instead. It is, after all, the start of a new lunar year, the year of the dragon!

Apparently, the year of the dragon is big news as having a baby in this year is believed to guarantee the family good luck in the years to come. Not to mention that the dragon baby, especially if it's a boy, is believed to be destined for much success and prosperity throughout his/her life. I've even heard of stories where babies born in the year of the dragon are invited over to neighbors homes so that they can play in the house and hopefully rub off some of their innate luck. Needless to say, I wanted to incorporate a dragon into the design but my freehand skills aren't quite up to par yet so I ended up with something that looked distinctly Asian (to me, at least) instead.

新 年 快 乐! 恭 喜 发 财!
Xin Nian Kuai Le/Happy New Year! Gong Xi Fa Cai/May you become prosperous!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Color Club Shabby Drab reminds us why cremes will always stay in style.

I don't know about you but I'm in the mood for spring. If Old Man Winter isn't going to hike up his pants and reeeeaaaally give us more snow, it would might as well be spring. When I still lived in Calgary, we didn't have our shortage of snow (although winter does go on for pretty much 2/3 of the year so there's that). But here in Toronto, we've barely seen a measly few centimetres this year! And to add insult to injury, it's been raining! I haven't even had need to bust out any of my hardcore cold weather gear. It's a really sad winter this is turning out to be. (I might bite my tongue but we'll see.) So instead of focusing on what could have been, I'm looking forward to the bright colors of spring!

Not a spring release but definitely has a spring-y feel!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Nail Art Wednesday: Hello Kitty Nails

While you're reading this, I'm probably scampering off after my half toddling, half running slip of a niece. She's so adorable! Such an easygoing baby, she hasn't cried at all or had a tantrum since she's been here last Sunday. She lets you know when she's hungry (points at food!), says "dada" when she's sleepy (I've learned that her dad is usually the one who puts her to sleep so that's associated with him) and isn't a picky eater. I'm crossing my fingers this doesn't change even when she hits the terrible twos. And probably like every other little kid out there, she adores Elmo like no other. She has this singing Elmo doll that dances and plays music when you press a button (which she likes to do herself) and she dances along with him. I briefly had my own phase with Hello Kitty but I've since outgrown it. But in the spirit of favorite childhood characters:

Some subtle Hello Kitty tone on tone nails!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Orly Fowl Play is out to prove there's nothing foul about this play.

foul play
1. unfair or treacherous conduct esp with violence
2. (Team Sports, other than specified) a violation of the rules in a game or sport
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003

I was trying to find something to tie in with today's featured polish but all I could think of were mighty ducks playing hockey and a goose referee calling a high-sticking violation amidst the squacking and booing of the turkey team's fans. You know, like a fowl foul play? (Hammie says I've reached new lows in cheesiness with that. Oops.) What about a flock of geese pooping in unison over your car? I'd consider that unfair or treacherous conduct. And violent enough if it hits you square in the eye! No? (Hammie's giving me that squinty eyed look that says just get on with it.) Moving on:

Definitely nothing foul in this play.

Friday, January 13, 2012

OPI Give Me the Moon brings to mind Wallace and Gromit

When you were little, did you ever think the moon was made of cheese? Being a big fan of cheese myself, I did wonder for a time although I might have eventually dismissed the idea. The moon just didn't look quite yellow enough to me to be a processed dairy product. But I got to thinking about it again when I saw the clay animation movie A Grand Day Out. It starred Wallace and Gromit, a man and his dog, two die hard cheese fanatics who decided to build a rocket and head to the moon (to eat it!) when they run out of cheese. (If they look familiar, you might have seen them in the 2005 Dreamworks Animation movie The Curse of the Were-Rabbit.)

Wallace and Gromit enjoying a picnic of moon cheese and crackers!

I was young enough at the time to think it was real and it might have been the cause behind my wanting to become an astronaut when I grew up (didn't everyone else?). It's a much beloved movie from my childhood so it's always a good thing when simple things like nail polish bring back fond memories.

Blue cheese inspired, perhaps?

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Nail Art Wednesday: Snowflakes Inspired Nails

I'm a big fan of snow. I love how the whiteness blankets everything and makes even the most horrible looking places look absolutely magical. I like the way it can look like thick frosting or at times, a light dusting of sugar icing. My favorite kind is the wet variety that clings to everything and sparkles like diamonds when the light shines on it a certain way. After so many winters, this island girl at heart is still enamored of the frozen white stuff. But do let me just get this straight. Snow = Yay but Cold, arctic winds = Boo. It's a good thing they don't usually come hand in hand although I find that here in the GTA, they kind of do. That certainly doesn't diminish my great fascination with it. (See, it even snows on the blog!) So it really doesn't come as a surprise that I'd eventually come up with nail art that's inspired by snow:

Snow-inspired sparkly tips!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

MEGA Truckload Tuesday: I think I accidentally took Santa's gift rucksack.

I have a confession to make. Remember how I kept telling myself I was on a no buy (wherein you try to control all spending/splurging urges in an effort to control the growth of your nail polish family)? Well, with all the holiday collections coming out, I thought it wouldn't hurt to lift it during the holidays. Understatement of 2011. Truth is, I went a bit crazy. So crazy that I was more than a little hesitant to show my loot. It really feels like I must've accidentally taken Santa's rucksack by mistake. Amusingly, there seems to be interest to see it (them?) and so I caved.

I thought this seemed appropriate, don't you think so?

But before I do, I have a some teeny tiny disclaimers (don't worry, I won't go defensive mode on you). All the items you'll see were acquired only during the months of December and early January. The photos need accompanying paragraphs in lieu of comments ergo, this will be a fairly lengthy post as there are quite a bit of photos after the jump. Okay, all set? Here we go!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Orly Rage might have been a self-fulfilling prophecy

Are you one to follow the trends as they come and go? I'd like to say I try without feeling shallow, fickle and bandwagon-y. I like to think I'm more of a connector than a maven. Now, that brings to mind the Law of the Few that Malcolm Gladwell talked about in his book, The Tipping Point. He says that there are three different kinds of people that dictate why something becomes a trend and why another doesn't. There's the salesmen who take an idea/product/practice and (un)wittingly make other people want it because of the sheer persuasiveness of their personality. Mostly, without even trying. These are the Joneses of the world, so to speak. Then there are the mavens who are the early adopters of trends. They make it their business to know what the next best and biggest thing is and you can bet your bottom dollar that they'll also be the first ones to have it. Last but certainly not least, there are the connectors, who, with their vast social network, spread the word about this latest trend. There are a host of other factors that contribute to making something into a social epidemic aka trend/fad/whatever else you want to call it that are talked about further in the book, but we'll stop at that for for our purposes. (It really, truly is a great read. If you haven't read it yet, I highly recommend it, along with the rest of Mr. Gladwell's other books.)

So where was I going with that? Well, mid to late 2011, rose gold was such a huge trend. It was everywhere. This sort of makes me wonder if Orly had an inkling it would be so big when they first released our featured polish for today in the spring of 2010. Orly Rage became THE rage.

"A prophecy...that misread, could have been."

Friday, January 6, 2012

Orly Luxe wishes you a luxurious year ahead!

...Aaaaand we're back. Sorry about the commercials but we've been swamped and the schedules haven't really been back to normal. Give me 3 more weeks and everything should be running just as smoothly as before. See, next week my sis in law (who lives in Whitby but works close to our place) and her adorable daughter will be staying with us for a few weeks while her hubby goes overseas for business. Guess who's playing babysitter? No complaints yet as I get to spend quality time with my niece, but feel free to ask me again after the first stinky diaper. We're also celebrating Chinese New Year on the 25th so that's still part of our holiday season, which just doesn't seem to end. Lots of preparation and traditions that need to be observed so I don't really get to breathe easy until February kicks in. Anyway, Hammie just shot me a look that clearly said I should get on with it, and so I shall.

It was hard to pick the polish to open 2012 with. I felt it would set the tone for the year ahead so I had to pick well. I was gravitating towards flakie polishes as they seem to be quickly becoming a trend. But I felt I didn't have enough time to do them proper justice so instead, I went with a happy metallic that is much favored to mean wealth:

El Dorado's got nothing on this.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Indulgent Intermission: The Nail Polish Tag

Okay, okay. I know what you're thinking. "It's Wednesday. That means it's Nail Art Wednesday. THIS isn't Nail Art Wednesday." Now, before you throw a full-fledged tantrum to make it clear that you're upset, give me a chance to explain. I ran out of scheduled posts. And all the photos for today's would-be post still needs to be weeded out, cropped and watermarked. *hangs head in shame* That being the case, I figured what better time to do this tag from Mary over at Swatch and Learn? (Something is always better than nothing, yeah?)

The way this works is I answer 10 questions that give you a chance to get to know me better (yay!) and I tag 5 other bloggers to do the same. I'll take a cue from Mary and tag everyone who reads this instead! You don't even need to be a blogger and you can even pick just the questions that speak to you.  

TAG, you're it! 

The 10 questions are as follows:
  1. How many polishes do you have?
  2. What is your favorite brand of nail polish?
  3. Do you like crackle nail polish, or do you hate it?
  4. What is your first nail polish brand?
  5. If you’re going to have a nail polish line, what are you gonna name it?
  6. What nail polish color does not complement you?
  7. What color does complement you?
  8. Who are two of your best nail art friends?
  9. What was the best nail polish gift you have ever received?
  10. Make a speech [about] thanking the blogger who tagged you.
 I'm definitely looking forward to your answers! :) Read mine after the jump!

Monday, January 2, 2012

The Top 5 Most Popular Posts of 2011

When Polished Indulgence started out in September of 2011, we didn't think that we'd have a following of even 10 before the year ended. Not that we're pessimists, mind you, but we do know it takes a lot of hard work and time to amass an audience, as is the case with any new enterprise. Much to our surprise, we did reach that number and went higher than we could've ever expected. By early December, we had 28 lovely followers and a decent number of page views from all over the globe! We were ecstatic. Our Christmas wish was to get to 30 before the year ends. And look, there's 34 now! *waves to all who've indulged with us* It might not seem like much but it's always nice to know that we're being read by so many wonderful people. (Sure beats talking to yourself any day!) It's also very humbling for us and it truly encourages us to churn out even better reviews and up-to-date sales/deals news. We've got lots of exciting things planned for 2012 but before that, let's take a fond look back on 2011's most popular posts.

#5: Color Club New Bohemian
Just about a month into the blogging scene, I was lucky enough to be asked by stamp artist extraordinaire Marta from Chit Chat Nails if I was interested to do a "triplet post" with her and the equally talented Carolina of Colores de Carol. I was floored. Two of the most well-established beauty/nail bloggers wanted little ol' me to do a post with them..? Of course I couldn't refuse such a golden opportunity! I'm all the more glad that it was New Bohemian that we featured as it's easily the polish that made me fall in love with the Color Club line.

#4: Butter London No More Waity, Katie
From a recent trip to the States, I picked up this pretty jelly glitter while Ulta had it on sale: buy 2, get 1 free. That conveniently dropped the price per bottle to under $10.00 (my often mentioned self-imposed maximum price per bottle purchasing limit). It's not hard to figure out why this is popular - with a jelly glitter, and a pretty purple at that, what's not to like? Amusingly, I found that I was more excited to wear this even if Wallis was what spurred that trip to Ulta. And no, I still haven't sported Wallis (although I totally should).

#3: Suncoat Sienna
This was a surprise entry (to me, at least!). I never thought this would generate so much interest! I guess I should've known when a lot of us are trying to find healthier and organic options for our beloved beauty products. Nail polish is no exception. It also helped tons that Suzy Shier featured this post on their Twitter/Facebook page (our first)! I'm excited to do an updated post on this Canadian brand using their basecoat/top coat in hopes I get a better result, as well as play around with other available colors.

#2: Poppy Nail Art for Remembrance Day
How thrilled are we that the #2 most popular post is a nail art one? What started out as an exercise in creativity turned out to be way more fun and satisfying that any of us could've imagined. These poppy nails are a personal favorite as the process of creating them echoed so much of my beloved childhood art classes. Bonus points that these were a cinch to do even with my non-dominant left hand!

#1: Gift Wrapped Nails for Christmas
You already know how HUGE Christmas is to us but that's only part of the reason why we're so excited that this is the #1 most popular post from 2011 on Polished Indulgence. This was the product of one of those "wouldn't it be cool if.." moments. I was brainstorming Christmas themed nail art (I still have a couple that I didn't get to do that you'll see for this year's!) and while this wasn't my favorite, everyone who saw this just fell in love with it. I'm honestly still not sure why but you won't hear me complaining about it. :D To know people enjoy my efforts is enough reason for me.

And there you have it. If you had told us earlier that the top post for 2011 would've been a nail art one, we'd have laughed incredulously. See, we weren't even planning on doing nail art to begin with. Aren't we glad we decided otherwise! Knowing it's been good for you as it's been for us is more than we could've ever hoped for.

To end this post, won't you raise your nail polish bottle with us for a toast? Here's to more sparkly goodness, more beautiful and unique colors and finishes, more innovation in cosmetics, more incredible deals and freebies, and just more of everything wonderful and good in 2012! Cheers! Gan bei! Salud!

Happy New Year from me, Mr. J & Hammie!
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