Hi there, my darlings! It's hotter than Sriracha in NYC! I mean, the kind of hot that makes stepping more than 4 ft away from the air-conditioning physically painful. Believe me, I tried. While a girl can cozy up at home and take her time with her beauty rituals in the winter, Summers are all about quick, hassle-free looks. Preferably in bright, bold colors that can distract you from the oppressive heat. Because, if there's anything I love about the Summer, it's the colors! The vibrant neons and the strong shimmers give me an excuse to go out of my apartment, to actually do stuff when the sun is still shining. So, with that thought in mind, I set off to Sally Beauty to curate a selection of readily available, affordable, gorgeous nail polish shades that are perfect for these Summer days...plus a couple of essentials that make at-home manis fun and easy. Scroll on for a little Summer inspiration for your nails!


POLISH HELPER #1: 

Orly Bonder is my go-to basecoat. I've been using this one for years now and it really helps with the ridges on my nails, providing a smoother surface for applying polish. It's slightly sticky and I think that's what's key--it physically adheres to the polish and holds it on to your nail. Plus, it dries super quickly so you're not sitting there for ages waiting for just your basecoat to dry!




1. OPI SPF XXX (Retro Summer 2016 collection)

Described as an orange red, this beauty was my first pick as soon as I walked into Sally Beauty's. It wears peachy-coral on me and is fully, beautifully opaque in 2 easy coats. Although it's pretty shiny on its own, I topped it with OPI Infinite Shine topcoat for that extra bit of shine!








2. OPI Correctamundo (Tru Neon Summer 2016 collection)

Described as a twilight blue, I knew I had to have this rich, vibrant shade! This one has such an unique formula--almost jelly-like application and it dries to a smooth, sexy matte. The swatches below show 3 thin coats. Just perfect for the beach or a summer night out!








3. NINA ULTRA PRO Punki Purple

My very first from this brand, I've obviously been missing out if this gorgeous electric purple is anything to go by! Opaque in 3 thin coats and another perfect matte, this shade of purple is so eye-catching!








4. NINA ULTRA PRO Caribbean Blue

A shimmering, bright blue with a metallic finish, this shade totally lives up to its name! Perfectly opaque in 2 coats, this reminds me of those tropical seas that we all dream of! Not going somewhere tropical this summer? Throw this baby on and you can imagine you're right there on that Caribbean beach!








POLISH PAL #2:

OPI Matte Finish topcoat is the staple matte topcoat in my arsenal--I haven't come across a better matte topcoat yet! I had to throw it on Caribbean Blue and I have to say, WOW! Love the shimmer mattefied!






5. FINGER PAINTS Dye-ing to Know (Spring 2016 collection)

Do you love reds as much as I do? Then you'll love this bright watermelon shade! This juicy red is perfectly opaque in 3 thin coats and dries to a matte finish. Matte not your thing? I topped it with OPI Infinite Shine topcoat on the middle and ring fingers to show you that it's just as gorgeous shiny! Oh and NO WHITE BASE!










6. FINGER PAINTS 50 Shades of Ashley (Project Runway collection with Ashley Tipton)

This one was another I instantly knew I had to have! Just look at that iridescent shimmer! You can layer this sheer lilac shade or just go with 1 thin coat over your favorite creme, like I did over Orly Cashmere Cardigan on the middle and ring fingers. Either way, this one is utterly stunning!










7. CHINA GLAZE Turned Up Turquoise (2008 Ink collection)

This shimmering turquoise matte is a classic and if you don't have it in your stash, you do NEED it! Perfectly opaque in 2 easy coats, this shade just screams SUMMER!








POLISH HELPER #3:

OPI Infinite Shine topcoat is totally new to me and I'm loving the fast drying time as well as the glossy finish. If you don't like all the neon mattes, just throw a thin coat of this topcoat on and you can still enjoy all the Summer neons!






8. ORLY Glowstick (Feel the Vibe collection for Summer 2012)

This one is another classic and while I normally don't DO yellows, this shockingly bright neon yellow just called out to me! A bit streaky at first, this levels out quite nicely by the third coat and it's still just as bright without a white base coat. Neon pedicure anyone?!








9. SALLY GIRL Fiery Fashion (BONUS!)

I found this little gem in the clearance section for under a dollar and had to add it to my stash! This vibrant, neon orange applies like a jelly, is perfectly opaque in 3 thin coats and dries to a semi-matte finish. Love at first sight for me!








So there you have it, my darlings! You can find all these fabulous shades at Sally Beauty, in stores and online HERE


For more summer inspiration, follow Sally Beauty through the social media outlets below to learn more about their latest products :

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Which of my Summer-inspired shades appeal to you most? I'd love to hear from you in the comments section below!











Hi there, my darlings!! You know, I hardly ever get the chance to really sit down and do nail art--art of any kind has never come easily to me! I can barely draw a straight line with a ruler! So, I never used to consider myself creative or artistic by any means until I started dabbling in nail art with. It came as a surprise when I started enjoying it and more so, when you guys started liking it! Go figure, right? Since then, I've collected quite a stash of polishes, tools and accessories just for nail art and still am always looking for more. Today's post highlight a couple of polishes that have proven perfect for nail art and totally inspired me to create a couple of looks--Glisten & Glow's All Dressed Up collection!


Little Black Dress is a jet black crème. Although I used 2 thin coats in the swatches below because I knew I was going to attempt some art and wanted to make sure I was prepared, if you tend to paint a little thicker, you could totally get away with one coat! This black dries to a really shiny, glossy finish but again, knowing I'd be creating something, I topped it with 1 thin coat of Glisten & Glow's HK Girl topcoat. One of the most perfect black crèmes I have EVER encountered!










Wedding Gown White is a bright, crisp, clean white crème. ALMOST a one coater, the swatches below show 2 easy coats, topped with 1 thin coat of Glisten & Glow's HK Girl topcoat. White crèmes can be giant pains in the butt, often streaky, patchy or just plain unmanageable. But, trust me when I say, you NEED to try this one! The formula is absolutely divine!










Now, for my favorite part...the nail art!

1. BLACK AND WHITE GRADIENT with WHITE AND BLACK STAMPING:

I wanted to go for something that reminded me of the soft cotton sarees that women favor in India during the summers so the mandala image seemed perfect. The base is a gradient of Wedding Gown White and Little Black Dress, stamped with a gradient of Little Black Dress and Wedding Gown White. Yup, you read that right! THESE BABIES STAMP! And stamp quite well! I also used a clear jelly stamper I picked up from AliExpress (which I FINALLY got the hang of!). So, this look was a win for me personally on many levels!






2. SPLATTER NAILS:

The base is Wedding Gown White and I made splatter decals using Splatter stencils from Whats Up Nails and Glisten & Glow's entire Experience the Islands collection. These stencils are unbelievably easy to use and I got such amazingly crisp, clean decals. More about them in a post to follow soon! One of my favorite looks of all times, I love the bright pops of color over the pristine white!






3. BLACK AND GOLD NAILS USING TEMPORARY TATTOOS:

By far, the easiest nail art look I created, this was done in 30 minutes from start to finish! The base is Little Black Dress and I used designs from Dress Your Face's limited edition collaboration with SnapTats which I had picked up ages ago. You can use these pretty much how you would on your skin--cut to size, remove the clear plastic, place the design side down flat against your nails, wet the back and lift up the protective paper. Voilà! I added a few dots using Lynnderella Working on my Tan and topped with 1 thin coat of Glisten & Glow's HK Girl topcoat. Easy peasy mani for a night out!








Mattefied with OPI Matte Finish topcoat:








So there you have it, my darlings! Glisten & Glow's All Dressed Up collection is currently available on her site HERE--each full-size, 15 mL bottle will be priced at $7.50. You can snag the duo for $14.50 plus shipping or if you want to buy both the Experience the Islands collection and the duo, you can pick them up for $45 plus shipping.


If you want to know more about Glisten & Glow's line of products (HINT HINT : don't forget to stock up on HK Girl topcoat!), you can find her on the social media sites below :

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Website



Which of these nail art looks do you like best? I'd love to hear from you in the comments section below!







****Products were sent to me for an honest, unbiased review. All opinions are my own.****
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