Saturday, 30 November 2013

Tara's Talons! Get Nailed UK Indie style!


Today I have some swatches from a UK indie brand, Tara's Talons. Tara launched her brand at the start of the year, and since then has gone from strength to strength selling her pretties! Today I have two polishes from the Underwater Wonder World collection to show you, Where the Mermaid Roam and Neptune.

Tara describes Where the Mermaid Roam as a limited edition hand made matte blue polish, and I think it is very appropriately named! It's such a pretty, shimmery ocean blue that would make a great base for some water-themed nail art or stamping! I would describe it as a satin finish - semi-matte without topcoat, but looks gorgeous glossy too. It is sheer - for the swatches I used 2 coats over Models Own Feeling Blue on all fingers except my pinkie, which is 4 coats on it's own. Saying that, in this instance, sheer doesn't mean streaky, and the application was smooth and easy.

And I just had to take a couple of pics with flash to show you the shimmer (damn you British gloom!)

Next up, Neptune. Tara describes this as limited edition hand made matte grey polish with glitters in gold, green, bronze and blue. Again, this one has a semi-matte finish, but I would recommend a good topcoat otherwise, as with all glitters of this type, it can be a bit bumpy. Don't let it put you off though, as the shimmery, metallic base looks just stunning and has such depth when it's glossy. I used two coats here, but if you were careful you could use one and easily get away with it ;)

All of Tara's polishes come in 5ml or 10ml bottles - and look at the cute packaging!

Mini (5ml) polishes cost £3.50 and the 10ml £6.50 and can be purchased on Tara's Talons Etsy store or at and Tara has been super lovely and given you lovely readers 10% off with the code SAVE10 at either store. She also has some nail art and pampering goodies available! What are you waiting for!


The product featured was a PR sample provided to me for free for review consideration. All opinions expressed are my own and 100% honest. Please see my disclaimer in the tab above for further details.
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Friday, 29 November 2013

33 Day Challenge day 30 - same pattern, different colours!

Day 30! Eek just three more to go!

Today's prompt was to use the same pattern in different colours. Now, you may have guessed I have a little bit of a thing for feathers, specifically peacock feathers but anything feathery really. So I took the change today to combine two new stamping plates and create a peacock feather mani in colours I love. I used metallic green, blue and purple underneath a peacock pattern and black underneath a single feather, all stamped with gold. The single feather is from Bundle Monster 419 and the pattern is from MoYou Pro plate 03.

You may be wondering "Hey Helly, where's your thumb at?" Well, before I got my pictures, this happened. Bum.

Never mind! I'm tempted to file my nails into almonds...might finish the challenge off first though!

I love my peacocks, and owls :) I even have a peacock father tattoo which I love love love! I wouldn't get an owl tattoo though...I would never be able to get this out of my head...

A Owl?

Anyway, to almond or not to almond...what do you think?


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Wednesday, 27 November 2013

33 Day Challenge Day 29 - your favourite pattern!


I had a bit of a brain fart when it came to this manicure. I was convinced it was due to come after the Europe prompt and so did it in a bit of a rush before checking and realising it was still a couple of weeks away. Doh! Anyway, I was mostly happy with how it came out so I'll go with it... I chose paisley as my favourite pattern, and I could have taken the easy way out and stamped it, but I decided to try and freehand it with a Barry M nail art pen. The detail could have been a little finer, and it would have been nice to not have had to go over the design 4 times (hence the blurry pinky) for the pen to be opaque, but beggars can't be choosers. I used 3 coats of Sally Hansen Jaded as the base, and the accent is a couple of coats of a Poundland feather polish (which I talked about in this post). Freehanded random paisley and done. I'm still not convince by the feather effect (hairy nails, anyone?), but I think I can handle it in small doses.

What's your favourite pattern?


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Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Off Topic Tuesday - 5 days, 5 faces!

Hi all!

Last week in one of the Facebook beauty groups I belong to, we had a little challenge amongst ourselves to create a different themed look each day. I really enjoyed it, and it got me thinking about how I used my make-up. I don't have a huge stash but it isn't small by any means, but I found coming up with each look really stretched my boundaries and made me step out of my comfort zone. I thought I'd share each day with you, too!


Here's my monday look, a simple liquid eye liner and red lip combo.


On Tuesday we were challenged with Autumnal orange look. This was my least favourite look of the week, but I used my neglected Sleek Sunset palette and I've used it since so silver lining!


Wednesday's look was girly green, and I went for an olive eye shadow to match my jumper (sorry the lighting sucked! It was dark as doomsday!)


The brief for Thursday was a burgundy/plum smokey eye and I used Maybelline Color Tattoo in Pomegranite (a blogger fave!) When I've worn it before it's make my eyes sore, but it wasn't too bad this time so hopefully I'll get to wear it more.


Friday's theme was Glitz and Glam. I didn't glitz it up too much because of work, but went for a classy shimmery grey eye with winged liner, and burgundy lips.

It was a fun week, and it made a change from the same old nudes everyday! It also made me want to increase my blusher collection, which is dangerous!


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Monday, 25 November 2013

33 Day Challenge day 28 - lines!

Hi all!

I must say, I'm rather proud of this manicure! I didn't want to just go for stripes for the 'lines' prompt, so I made a stamper decal using Konad S6, Konad Black and Barry M silver and gold foils. I paired it with black and gold studs, and gold and black studs on the thumb (Models Own Bora Bora and gold studs painted black!). I had a few bubbles and a wrinkle when I applied the decals, but I actually think in this case the foil polish was quite forgiving and it didn't look horrendous. Well, I hope it didn't!

Possibly my favourite mani of the challenge? It's high up there at least! Not long to go now...


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Sunday, 24 November 2013

Winter is here...


So, the clocks have fallen back, we've had our first snowfall (just a few flurries, but it totally counts!) and it seems winter really is here. Which is a good thing really as that was the theme for adventures in stamping this week! I got a bit adventurous with some layering and a glitter accent. I used a base of Sally Hansen Eel Skin, a lovely mid-grey creme and then topped my accent ring and thumb with Dollish Polish You'll Shoot Yer Eye Out, Kid. There's a bit of a story behind this one, I don't think it's meant to have the gold stars in. At least all the swatches I've seen haven't had gold stars in but I bought it (very cheaply) from a lady who'd had an accident with the original bottle and had decanted it. I'll ask her one day but for now, I have gold stars. I did have to fish for the snowflake glitters, which was a bit of a pita, but it's totally worth it. So pretty! I then stamped this wintery foresty tree-y scene from Bundle Monster 407 in Konad White, and sandwiched it under a thin layer of Models Own Indian Ocean for the pretty shimmer. In LOVE with the fairytale-like result!

Ready, Steady, Pic Spam!

With flash. Dat shimmer!

Now, I'm facing a bit of a dilemma. I broke a corner off my thumb nail a few days ago, and rather than filing it all down I shaped it into an almond and kinda fell in love with it! But now, do I do the rest of them, or do I let this grow out and file it back to square? My nails are long enough to have short almonds now, and I've wanted to try them for a while but I know it makes the nails weaker and I'm not ready to lose the little bit of length I've managed to get for the first time ever. So, what would you do? I asked on Instagram yesterday and the majority or people said go for it... Maybe I will after I've finished the 33 day challenge - I've been working ahead and only have 3 more to do so we'll see how the thumb fares in the meantime!

Are you a fan of winter? I love my fairytale winter nails, just not so keen on the cold!

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Friday, 22 November 2013

33 Day Challenge day 27 - 3 patterns!


Today's challenge was to incorporate 3 patterns into your manicure, and I went with classic dots, stripes and random splodges! I used black as a base and Color Club Molten Metals for the patterns, and then mattefied it! I think the effect was quite striking, even if the execution wasn't fantastic...


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Wednesday, 20 November 2013

33 Day Challenge day 26 - something from Pinterest!


It's not often I pin something and then recreate it in the same day! But, I loved this so much that I did just that, albeit unintentionally. I'd pinned this manicure by Love, Varnish, Chocolate and more earlier in the day, and when I sat down and checked which challenge mani I was due to do that evening, the gods were shining on me and I went for it! I used a different stamping plate, but the polishes used were the same - China Glaze Exotic Encounters and A England Saint George for the stamping (from Bundle Monster 404). My version isn't as perfect as Deborah's lovely original, but I still liked the combination and it's one I'd use again.

Are you a pinner? You can follow me on Pinterest here!


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Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Off-topic Tuesday - All I Want for Christmas...

Hey loves!

I have to admit I'm not one to get overly excited about Christmas. It was never a huge occasion when I was growing up, but now my boys are getting older and getting into the magic of it all I'm looking forward to making it special for them. It's been a difficult year for me, and things are still up in the air, and as it happens I might not even get to spend Christmas with them so Mr NN prompted me to think about a few things I might like to receive and I thought I'd share them with you! I hate to say it, but although he has my best interests at heart he usually gets it hopelessly wrong, so this year I will be directing him to this Pinterest board I created (and will be adding to over the next few weeks) and downloading the Pinterest ap to his phone!

My number one want is a nice coffee machine. I've had my eye on a Tassimo since they came out, and now that they do Costa coffee pods that's pretty much sealed the deal for me! I do love a kitchen gadget and this would make a lovely addition to my kitchen counter.

As you would expect, there are a few beauty bits and bobs on my list, and the original Urban Decay Naked palette tops it. I have a love of eyeshadow palettes, and would love to invest in a few higher end ones, and where better to start?

Every year, Soap and Glory have a lovely range of giftsets at Boots, and one is usually reduced to half price for a week. I don't know which is this years bargain set this year, but what ever it is I'd be happy to find it under my tree come Christmas day.

Christmas isn't Christmas without a new perfume, and this year two I'm loving are Calvin Klein Euphoria and Dior Miss Dior. I received a sample of Miss Dior recently and fell in love with it, although it's nothing like my usual scent. It has a sort of powdery, floral note to it but I think that it makes a great day time fragrance. A cheaper, and completely different alternative is Euphoria, more fruity and musky.

I've wanted to try the iconic Liz Earle hot cloth cleanser for a while, and what better way than with a mini set hidden inside a star shaped bauble! So cute.

I couldn't leave nail polish off my list and this year China Glaze wins the battle of the Christmas collections for me (sorry OPI, Mariah just doesn't do it for me). I'd be happy with either of these cute giftsets.

I've talked about my love of Yankee Candles before, but I usually only buy the wax tarts or samplers, very occasionally a small jar but I've now found a fragrance I love and a large jar (at around £18) would be a worthwhile investment. I love the spice in Vanilla Chai, not too strong and not too sweet. It smells completely different unmelted compared to lit so don't let the curry like, cold smell put you off!

A boring one, but I didn't want to over look it as I need a new dressing gown! I think I might ask my Mum for this one, she's good at choosing things like that!

And last but not least, this would be a real treat. I love musicals, and I would LOVE to go and see Charlie and the Chocolate Factory at the Theatre Royal in London. I saw a documentary about it recently and it just looks magical. My Mum would love it too.

Of course, the thing I want the most is to just be with my boys on Christmas day. I would quite happily give anything, anything at all to just be able to see them open their presents and spoil them rotten. Nothing else matters.

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