Sunday, April 20, 2014

For Cannon

*Disclosure--I purchased all of the following polishes used in my manicure. Rainbow Honey donated 50 bottles of Believe in Pink with awareness bands to help raise funds for St. Baldrick's Foundation. This is my honest, unbiased review.*

As many of you know, I had my head shaved for St. Baldrick's Foundation to raise money for pediatric cancer research. One of the reasons I did this was for a special little boy, 2 year old Cannon. One year ago today he was diagnosed with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma--one of the worst childchood cancers. Seeing the pictures of this sweet boy, reading the emotional rollercoaster they were going through by his mother, and learning the statistics of pediatric cancer from his father, I HAD to do something. Ignorance isn't bliss, folks.

And so on March 8, 2014, I had my head shaved and it was one of the best days of my life. Thanks to the incredible generosity of friends and family, I raised $2610.
BEFORE--with #TeamMakeKristaBald

AFTER!!!! I LOVE my new look!!!

THUMBS UP to everyone who helped me raise money for St. Baldrick's Foundation to end pediatric cancer for GOOD!

I was a little nervous at first but then I remembered my motto: 

 In addition, Dee of Rainbow Honey graciously donated 50 bottles of Believe in Pink, the October LE and 50 pink awareness bands for me to sell to raise funds.

Rainbow Honey Oct 2013 LE Believe in Pink
photo courtesy of Rainbow Honey
I am committed to this for life. It is an amazing feeling to finally KNOW why you were put on this earth. I will be creating a website in the near future with my story of having my head shaved, fundraising, as well as statistics, kids who are fighting cancer, or who have lost their battle, and how you can get involved!

Meanwhile, Cannon continues to receive treatments. We had hoped he would reach NED this week--NO EVIDENCE OF DISEASE--but unfortunately there is still cancer somewhere in his body. All scans are clean--so they don't know where the cancer is. However numbers ARE going down so there is HOPE.

Cannon has a favorite blanket he carries everywhere--so this week, I did a blue ombre manicure in his honor. For some of his treatments, everthing must be washed EVERY DAY...or there are days he is sick, or bleeds from his mouth and nose due to the treatments that were meant for adults (there are NO treatments for kids for neuroblastoma). Cannon's family found a supplier of the blanket, so now he has a blanket whenever he wants :) That story has stuck with me and when I see shades of lighter blue, it reminds me of him.

September is Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month
and represented by a Gold Ribbon

You can read more about Cannon at Cannonball Kids Cancer (now a non-profit!!)
and on Facebook.

If you missed out and would like to donate to my St. Baldrick's Fundraising, you can find my personal page here: Make Krista Bald! Because cancer doesn't take a break!

This is my very first ombre manicure and I love it! I've been wearing this manicure for a whole WEEK! and it's still going strong. There is very slight tipwear--I used my holy grail of quick-dry topcoats--HKGirl. I purchased it at Glisten & Glow; it is also available at Llarowe.

The polishes I used were Dollish Polish (LOVE her stuff!) and Colors by Llarowe. All of the polishes I used from DP are exclusive to Llarowe. Some of the CbL polishes may be available at Harlow & Co. (I just checked--these colors are not available there at this time but may in the future).

All of the lighter polishes needed about 3 coats to be opaque. The 2 darker blues needed 2, but you *might* be able to get away with one. AND I finally got smart and used my Ott Lamp for photos! I think it's a huge improvement :)

Beach Glass is a cream crelly with blue, green and teal glitter. I topped it with a bit of Home is Where the Heart Is, an amazing blue/teal/green flakey topcoat. HIWTHI is a Limited Edition, and sales went to help the chairity "Fairy Dog Parents" The two together makes this light up --they truly are perfect together!!

Zipper is a soft blue with a hint of grey. You can see the hologram faintly glowing in this picture. It is *so* lovely!

 Frozen is that perfect "Cinderella" blue--or should I say Elsa blue! (it even matches one of my medications lol) It has just a hint of sparkle to it that gives it depth.

Monkey See, Monkey Do is an amazing light royal blue with a strong linear hologram. In regular light, it appears darker, almost the same color as Love You Forever, but in sunlight I can see a definite difference. Fantastic!

Finally, Love you Forever is a darker navy blue, with a strong linear hologram and gold shimmer that truly makes this an incredibly special polish. This was also a LE polish, and sales went to Susie's Cause. There is so much love wrapped up in this polish--it was made for Llarowe's Customer Service agent, Emily, whose mother passed away from colon cancer (represented by a blue ribbon). The children's book Love You Forever was very special to them.

I have finally started purchasing more blue polishes took me some time digging through my stash to find the right blues to make this a nice ombre gradient manicure. I proved to myself that I can wear more "muted" tones (yes this is muted for me lol) and still look dazzling. In the sunlight it was really a sparklefest!!!

Please continue to keep Cannon in your thoughts as he battles this monster. He is truly my hero and so are his parents. They taught me so much and I truly love him with all my heart, even though I haven't met him yet. And keep a look out for an announcement with my next big project!

Stay pretty and remember:

Saturday, February 22, 2014


Thursday, December 12, 2013

Swatches: Color Club Luminous Lacquer Gift Set

*Disclaimer--I purchased the following polishes*

I could not resist purchasing this set from llarowe--it was only $10 for 4 polishes that are full sized (.5 oz). The botttle shape is different from what we're used to from Color Club but I love them! The remind me of the bottles from Deborah Lippmann and Glitter Gal.

The photos were taken quickly with an iphone (thanks Baby Gator! my college daughter). They just do not do the polishes justice as photos rarely do but I love them! However no one can find any swatches so here you go!!

Each is a sheer base with the same opalescent flakie that gives a pink/gold flash.

From l-r: Violet Twilight, Galactic Garden, Pink Planet, Spiral Stars

None of the polishes can be built up to opacity--they are meant to go over a solid color (unless you don't mind VNLs).

These are very similar to other sheer with flakie polishes out there--Nfu Oh, Nails Inc, Finger Paint, and Max Fantasy Fire come to mind (for Violet Twilight--but I didn't compare swatches to see how close they are...I'll update once I can check).

10 Spiral Stars has a clear base
11 Pink Planet has a pink/peach base (over the white nail swatch it's very faint)
12 Galactic Garden has a green/teal base
13 Violet Twilight has a blue/purple base

I then layered each over a darker shade to give you an idea of how it looks.

14 Spiral Stars over Colors by llarowe Unzipped (a sky blue hologram)
15 Pink Planet over Colors by llarowe Strega (a bright red with shimmer)
16 Galactic Garden over Colors by llarowe Gizzards & Lizards (an amazing dark green/teal with a strong linear holo and full of hologram goodness!)
17 Violet Twilight over Colors by llarowe Grace (a lovely purple multichrome)

My absolute favorites were 16 & 17. I think I'd walk into traffic staring at Gizzards & Lizards with the flakies and holos!! 17 is less flashy but truly gorgeous. The flakies give off almost a red spark over the purple in Grace.

I really wish the photos were better for you and when I can I'll take new ones with my camera and update. Time was of the essence here ;) I think all the flakies and holos make the camera freak out!

Stay warm, happy holidays and 

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Popsugar Must Have! *Special Edition Box*

*Disclaimer--I purchased this box and this is my own honest review. 
Photos are from*

I have loved just about every minute being a subscriber of PopSugar Must Have (aka Must Have Bag....somewhere around the 3rd or 4th month "bag" was dropped). After a bit of a disaster from their first Special Edition Box (which was very quickly taken care of by their fantastic staff) I have splurged on the SE Box since.

The normal box costs $35/month (there are deals if you subscribe for multiple months). The SE Box costs $100 BUT the value is phenomenal!!

Here's the box that came to me in September (belated Happy 21st Anniversary to me!)
I really love this ring even though I rarely wear them due to my psoriatic arthritis in my hands. However it looks adorable on my pinky and it's really pretty!

Included a lovely case, and 9 matte and shimmery shadows plus an eyeliner that is NOT BLACK! It also includes some tips using the various shadows/liner. I don't purchase Stila since I usually purchase Indie cosmetics, but this is a pretty set and I really like it. Easy for day/night.

Nom Nom Nom. 'Nuff said.

Cynthia Vincent Classic Shopper Bag--$42 (was $85)
Mine is similar to this only has a black interier. It's silk and it is GORGEOUS. Although when I read the uses (shopping, gym) I was like "No way!" This pretty will go with me to the theatre and other dressy affairs. LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE (would have added a few more O's if there had been some kind of zipper or snap attachment but I could probably add something myself).

Goldfaden Doctor's Scrub Ruby Crystal Microderm Exfoliator--$75
Ruby Slippers? So Dorothy. Now I can get a complexion even Glinda would be envious of, thanks to lab created rubies in this gentle every day face wash. I have been dying to try something like this!

Library of Flowers Bubble Bath--$36
This heavenly concoction (I got "The Forest" Scent"--coco butter, green tea, ginger, lemongrass with notes of oak bark, arctic moss, and white sage) will have you feeling like a forest nymph in no time! However, I don't have a tub so I'm going to put this in a foam dispenser and use it as bodywash. It's a huge container so it should last quite some time!

Christian Lacroix Papier Notebook--$15
For anyone who knows me I. LOVE. Journals. LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE. I use them for all sorts of things and a blank one is like....a new life. I just started using mine (I call it Uplifting) to write down uplifting lyrics, quotes, poems, etc. I'd never spend this much on a notebook but I adore this!

Going by the lowest prices, this Special Edition Box comes to just shy of $300! WOO HOO! I just got my monthly subscription box which I will review soon.

Have you tried PopSugar or the special boxes? It is totally a worthwhile splurge!

Monday, July 15, 2013

NOTD: Enchanted!

*Disclaimer: I bought the following polishes*

One of the hottest Indie nailpolishes on the market right now is Enchanted Polish. I have managed to acquire quite a few through the Enchanted Polish website as well as llarowe. These polishes are going like hotcakes--after doing a mega skittles manicure, I now understand why!

Before the Love a Lot of Glitter collection came out, I saw a blogger who had swatched the glitter over earlier multichromes *drool faint dies*. I knew at some point I wanted to try that and here we are!

Two of the polishes I used as a base are from the Beatles' line--fabulous polishes to celebrate one of the best bands in history. The Love a Lot collection is inspired by Care Bears--and I am old enough to remember getting my first Care Bear when they originally came out ;)

My favorite is Good Night bear ;)

Trying to photograph the multichromes, holograms and glitters was was a real challenge for my husband--

I began with a coat of Deborah Lippmann's Fade to Black

I then used Enchanted multichromes and holograms.

I topped each color with one of the Love a Lot of Glitters topcoats.

Thumb to pinky, Enchanted Polish:
Across the Universe under Freeze Machine
Dragon Spit under Daydream Surprise
Hey Jude under Wish Me Good Luck
Hot Glam Girl under Tender Heart
Ocean Potion under Tummy Time

The coat of black under Across the Universe really makes this multichrome pop! It shifts from a navy blue to green to burgundy with a fine shimmer. Adding Freeze Machine--a mix of blue, green and irridescent glitter--makes this look like the universe! It literally glows as if powered by tiny LED lights!

I could have omitted the black base coat for Dragon Spit--a fiery orange hologram--but I know for next time. The mix of colors and shapes of DayDream surprise made it look like fireworks!! OOOH!

Hey Jude is a fantastic green multichrome that shift from lime green to gold to blue. I picked Wish Me Good Luck for the green glitters, but the black and blue really popped in the photos, and silver snuck in there somehow! These were really difficult to photograph, but so gorgeous to look at!

Hot Glam Girl also could have been built up on its own--my favorite color, pink and a linear hologram *swoon*. Tenderheart was a perfect color match, though the hearts were a bit tricky to fish out--but I managed to get one! The glitter comes in red, yellow/gold, irridescent shapes.

Finally, Ocean Potion, a light teal blue hologram could also have gone on solo. Tummy Time is a fun array of glitters in various colors, mostly lighter colors, but so many shapes! This one represents all the Care Bears and their tummy designs.

The glitters needed a few coats of quick dry to really smooth it out. My HOLY GRAIL is HK Girl--although I have tried several quick dry brands, this one never lets me down! I purchase mine from Glisten & Glow.

Here are the bottle shots of these much-loved beauties!
Hot Glam Girl and Dragon Spit--linear holos!

Ocean Potion--another linear holo and so dreamy!

Hey Jude and Across the Universe--from the Beatle's Collection--stunning multichromes!

Love a Lot of Glitters collection
L-R  Freeze Machine, Daydream Surprise, Wish Me Good Luck, Tender Heart, Tummy Time

Ahhh this is why I love doing skittles manicures--it takes some coordination, but I get to play with more polishes this way!

Do you have any of these lovelies? Which are your favorite?

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Who wants to be a BEAUTY BOUNTY HUNTER?

If you've seen my sidebar, you may have seen this image for awhile

I'd like to formally announce my search for
Boba Fett need not apply

In my quest for #worldpolishdomination, I have searched high and low for some beauties that I have just missed and would love to add to my collection. But I'm just one person, so I decided to enlist the help of the beauty mavens of the world.

There will be rewards for helping me find my precioussssssssssssss.

How will this work? First I do request that the product be new, in the original bottle. (Original box not necessary). I will accept a polish that has only been swatched. I need a photo of the product, and if you have an account with eBay, Etsy, etc, a link to your feedback. Contact me at or to this post with your email address if you have what I'm looking for.

Next, payment will be one of two forms--Paypal, for the retail price of the polish plus 10% (and shipping to me). The other payment could be in the form of a swap. I have several polishes that I have doubles of, for swapping. In addition, especially if this is an international swap, there are lots of polishes I have access to. I will swap 1-3 polishes (and you might get some extras just because that's the way I roll). Polishes to be decided on before swap. I do have 100% positive feedback on Ebay and Etsy (both as TheCraftyAngel).

And how could we forget the fame in fame and fortune? You will get a badge for your blog/website/tattoo artist to emblazon on your flesh that states you are a ManicuredSlayer Bounty Hunter! I will place the badge on my site with a link to the site of your choice. You will also have my undying gratitude and I will be happy to help you find your own lemmings in the future ;)

In the original Wanted Poster, I had 2 Deborah Lippmann's--Raise Your Glass (a LE found only in Canada) and an older release, Don't Call Me Baby. I met a fantastic woman on FB who purchased RYG for me (and we later did a fun swap). And RIGHT before Xmas, my search for DCMB popped up on eBay. Who says there's not a Santa???

But the following polishes may be a lot harder to find.

Cult Nails Always Winning 
Cult Nails Unicorn Puke

I have every single Cult Nail release--except these two. I became a Cultie right before Always Winning was retired and just missed out on Unicorn Puke. I *do* have Clairvoyant but would love to have the official bottle with the gold label and Unicorn Puke name (plus they are numbered) ;)

Are you up for the challenge? Do you have what it takes to be a Polish Bounty Hunter?

On your mark, get set, GO!

Friday, July 5, 2013

NOTD: Independence Eh?

*Disclosure--I purchased the following polishes*

I'm running a bit late posting this--in fact, I didn't finish the manicure until the wee hours of July 5th. It happens lol.

I had planned the polishes I wanted to use beforehand, however. One of my *favorite* Indie brands: Girly Bits. I love Pam's creations so much, I have every single release in my collection (and a few backups). The name grabbed me right away, but how could I resist a polish with a crystal rhinestone on each bottle? Bling ON Bling. And the polishes are divine as well of course ;) While Pam has changed the label (and no more extra bling) every polish continues to be fantastic.

The irony is not lost on me, using a Canadian brand to celebrate our nation's independence. I couldn't resist using that when naming my post (my husband and I bonded over puns, the basis for our 20-year-long marriage)

Of course, Star Spangled was the first color I chose. It's a royal blue and red glitter in a blue jelly base. The glitter is very small, so it's not bumpy or gritty. I used 2 or 3 coats; it dries a tiny bit matte, so some topcoat really makes it sparkle.

I applied that for my accent nail and then looked at the remaining polishes to try and suss out a design. I have seen a few manicures that are a twist on the traditional French manicure--a design that covers the nailtip, but leaves the nailbed clear--so I decided to give it a whirl.

Here's the one that really captured my attention, from Chalkboard Nails

I freehanded the French tip with 2 different colors--Rogue, a ruby glitter in a clear base; and Denim Diva, a soft deep blue with a hint of shimmer. I only needed one coat of Diva, but needed a few coats of Rogue for better coverage. I don't think you could build this up to full opacity without using at least 3 coats.

Diva is a nice compliment to the blue in Spangled and it really reminds me of a well-worn pair of blue jeans. Rogue's red sparkle is dazzling and rich.

I was going to tape off the tips for the next part but it was still a bit wet (insert quick patch up). I added some quick dry topcoat to seal them and went ahead with more free-hand work (whoa!)

I used 2 similar glitters over my clear nailbeds--Canadian Eh? and Viva La Revolution! Canadian Eh? is for the celebration of Canada Day (July 1), and Revolution is for Bastille Day (July 14). Both have red glitter and white matte glitter with a bit of sparkle, Revolution adds blue hex glitter; each represents the colors of their flags. To my eye, they are both the same with the exception of the blue glitter. I used the dab method to distribute the glitter across the nail bed. I added another layer of quick dry topcoat to finish it off and smooth it out.

I am absolutely IN LOVE with the way the glitter looks over the nailbed. I can't quite describe it, but it looks so cool, the glitter suspended in the clear coats. It sparkles and hovers every so slightly off the nail. How would you describe it?

Here are the "vintage bottles", with original labels and crystal:

Hope you had a great holiday!