Ugly Shoes and Why I Wear Them

I swear I hate ugly shoes! If I could have my wish, I would wear shoes like the ones I pin so lovingly to my “Beautiful Shoes” board on Pinterest. Of course real life gets in the way, and I can’t afford these beauties. As a mom of 2 pre-school age children, heel aren’t always ideal. I used to wear heels to work every day. Now, I only wear heels when I’m dressing up.

I find it strange that I have such an abhorrence for ugly shoes, but have owned so many of them over the years. If you were to open my closet, you would find several pairs. They have official functions. No, really they do. I promise.

During the early 90s I was the proud owner of a pair of Birkinstocks. My first pair of ugly shoes I purchased as an adult. I’ll admit they were all the rage. I got them because a hippy friend of mine told me how comfortable they were. And they were comfortable, amazingly so, but they just didn’t go with anything. I wore them all the time. Well, until the cold weather struck. I promise I never wore them with socks.

Birkenstocks - Navy Suede Birks in the style Arizona. Just like the ones I had

Birkenstocks – Navy Suede Birks in the style Arizona. Just like the ones I had

In years past I also had a pair of UGGs. I only wore them as after ski boots. This was before the UGG craze of the early 2000s. I had them a solid decade before I saw Samantha on Sex in the City wearing UGGs. By the way, I had the exact same ones. Same color and everything. I’m glad to say I no longer have a pair of UGGs and haven’t for years.

Kim Cattrall as Samantha Jones in Sex in the City in UGG boots

Kim Cattrall as Samantha Jones in Sex in the City in UGG boots

Sadly, when Crocs came out, I picked up a pair. I wore them to the pottery lab, and then out gardening. I never went any place of consequence in them, but I still do have a pair of hot pink crocs. Now they live by the back door, and I use them when I’m taking out the trash. They are some of the ugliest shoes known to man, but oddly are cute on kids. My kids wear them all summer long.

Classic Croc Clog in hot pink

Classic Croc Clog in Hot Pink

Several years ago I read an amazing book called Born to Run by Christopher McDougal. It was an inspirational book about ultra-marathon running, a small tribe of Mexican Indians who run for fun, and the idea of running with a minimalist shoe. Since Born to Run was published, there are many more options for a minimalist running shoe. I was so inspired by the book, I vowed to take up running, and got a pair of Vibram Five Fingers.

Vibram Five Fingers Classic in Black

Vibram Five Fingers Classic in Black

The most recent pair of “ugly” shoes added to my collection were a pair of Dansko Professional Clogs. I have a long history with clogs. My first pair of shoes I remember loving were a pair of red leather and wood clogs I wore when I lived in Spain with my family in the late 70s. My mother still has those clogs on display on her hearth. They are worn down to the nub. The stitching is coming undone, the rubber sole is worn through on the heels, and the toes are all scuffed up, but I LOVED those shoes. I wore them every day for over a year. I cried when I didn’t fit in them anymore. Ever since then, my parents would buy me clogs whenever we happened upon them. I wore them through middle school, and high school. I had pairs in college and even in my early 20s. Now, my mother buys clogs for my daughters.

About 18 months ago, I was visiting my parents in Ohio and we stopped into one of my mother’s favorite shoe stores. She offered to buy a pair of shoes for me, and I ended up picking these. Mainly because I always let my parents buy me clogs for nostalgic purposes. As I was writing this blog, I only now realized that the clogs I chose were Limited Edition Dansko Professional 20th Anniversary Clogs. No wonder every Dansko lover I ever run into loves these clogs.

Limited Edition 20th Anniversary Dansko Clog

Limited Edition 20th Anniversary Dansko Professional Clog

I feel like I’ve let some ugly skeletons out of my closet. I’m not sure if skeletons or these shoes are worse. So here is where I need to know: do you own any ugly shoes? Have you ever? Has your fashion sense ever stopped you from purchasing ugly shoes,when your feet were screaming for comfort? Please tell me I’m not alone in my ugly shoe shame.

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Featured Post on Beauty Expression by Luchessa

I’m so excited! I was asked to write a blog for my beauty blogger friend Luchessa, and it’s up today. I wanted to write about something I don’t frequently talk about: cleansing. I highlighted 3 of my favorite cleansing products that have made a huge difference in the way my face feels and looks. I hope you’ll check out my guest post today. If you do, make sure to subscribe to Luchessa’s blog. She writes about products I want to get my hands on, and gently reminds me to be good to myself in my beauty regimen. You can also find her on Twitter.  Just let her know I sent you.

Cleansers featured in my blog for Beauty Expressons by Luchessa

Cleansers featured in my blog for Beauty Expressons by Luchessa

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Drugstore Chubbies

You must know this by now, but I’m a sucker for a new lip product. In the past several months, I’ve been trolling the drugstore aisles becoming more aware of what is there, and falling in love with a few new items.

I initially fell in love with Clinique’s Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Color Balm many years ago when they first came out. It was the first chubby I ever got my hands on. I now have NARS Velvet Gloss pencils (essentially a fat pencil), Tarte LipSurgence Lip Tint, and Urban Decay’s Super Saturated High Gloss Lip Color. All of these are essentially lip crayons. Fat lip pencils/lip balms with beautiful color. I have been attempting to break out of my high end makeup love affair, and start discovering the amazing makeup that the drugstore holds.

I’ve finally gotten over my fear of getting the wrong thing at the drugstore. Over the last several months I’ve picked up some new lip “chubby” pencils. I love that these are twistable color lip products. These three products are new at the drugstore in the past several months.

Flower Sheer Up Lip Tint in Lacey Laurel, Neutrogena MoistureSmooth Color Stick in Fresh Papaya, Cover Girl Lip Perfection Jumbo Gloss Balm in Berry Twist

Flower Sheer Up Lip Tint in Lacey Laurel, Neutrogena Moisture Smooth Color Stick in Fresh Papaya, Cover Girl Lip Perfection Jumbo Gloss Balm in Berry Twist

Flower Beauty Makeup is a new line exclusively at Wal-Mart by Drew Barrymore. It’s supposed to be high end makeup at an affordable price. I’ve tried several other lip products from the Flower line, and the Sheer Up Lip Tint is a nice addition at $7.98. This lip tint has no odor at all. I love that. I normally expect drugstore products to smell either waxy or super sweet and candy like. The texture of this lip tint is creamy on the lip. It looks great with one swipe of color, and builds up nicely with several passes over the lip. There is no drag when applying it, but of the three in this review, it is the hardest of all the products. I don’t feel like it would snap off if I twisted it up a little higher than I needed to when applying.

Flower Sheer Up Lip Tint in Lacey Laurel

Flower Sheer Up Lip Tint in Lacey Laurel

The Neutrogena Moisture Smooth Color Stick is so smooth going on. It almost feels like I’m putting butter on my lips. It does have a bit of fine gritty texture to it because of the reflective quality of the lip product. I only noticed it today as I was sitting down to review this product for my blog. I have several of these chubbies from Neutrogena, and I only just noticed it. What I really notice and don’t care for is the scent. It’s very strong and sweet. It reminds me of Fruit Loops cereal. Sugary, sweet and artificial. I know some people like the scent, but I’m not a fan. Over all, I love the color, the feel of it on my lips, the way it wears for at least 3 hours (sometimes longer) and the price.

Neutrogena Moisture Smooth Color Stick in Fresh Papaya

Neutrogena Moisture Smooth Color Stick in Fresh Papaya

I was a bit hesitant to pick up the Cover Girl Lip Perfection Jumbo Gloss Balm because I couldn’t see the actual color of the product. The cap was opaque and supposedly the color of the product. I had read great reviews of this product the first week it was out, so I took a step of faith, and got one. Recently, it’s been my favorite drugstore chubby and I use it all the time. I love how hydrating it feels on my lips, and how build-able the color is. Of these three chubbies, this one has the best texture. It’s amazingly smooth and creamy. It’s not heavy at all on my lips. They do have a slight waxy scent. I only smell it when I put the product right to my nose and sniff. If I didn’t already have a drawer full of chubbies, I would get the entire Cover Girl Jumbo Gloss Balm line. I might do that still.

Cover Girl Lip Perfection Jumbo Gloss Balm in Berry Twist

Cover Girl Lip Perfection Jumbo Gloss Balm in Berry Twist

Do you prefer a tube of lipstick over the chubbies? Do you have a favorite brand of chubby you swear by? What lip product is in your purse right now that you’re wearing for spring? I’d love to hear from you. Let me know your thoughts in the comment section.

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I like how easy these steps are for applying bronzer.

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From now on you can’t go wrong with your bronzer. With this detailed guide you will surely succeed a perfect bronzed look for any occasion! Hope it helped you! 🙂 😀 xoxo

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One Year Anniversary Blog Post!

It’s been an entire year of blogging! I was amazed when I opened up my blog today, and saw the “Happy Anniversary” bubble from WordPress. Truthfully, I completely forgot. I’m one of those people who doesn’t remember. I always joke that my husband is my extra brain. He remembers birthdays, special occasions, reminds me of obligations I’ve made and have forgotten. If he was a bigger part of my blogging life, he would’ve reminded me that my one year blogging anniversary was coming up. He’s not a regular reader, so he doesn’t know what’s going on here at The Lipstick Gal.

I wanted to thank you for taking the time to read my blog. This past year has been fun. I started this blog as a way to encourage myself to stop leaving the house looking like a Mommy Zombie. In the past year I have acquired not only lots of fun cosmetics, but I’ve finally rediscovered my inner glamour girl. I’ve learned to tight line my eyes, I’ve tried countless types of mascara, I’ve signed up for 3 different fashion and beauty subscription services, and so much more. When I look back at it all, if I hadn’t rediscovered my inner glamour girl, it wasn’t for lack of trying. I feel like I’ve been getting packages in the mail almost every other week from either Sephora, Ulta, Birchbox, Zoya, Ipsy, e-Salon and Little Black Bag. Throw in a little online clothes shopping and there is almost always a box arriving at the house with my name on it. The past year has been good to me. Good-bye Mommy Zombie!

Of all the things I’ve learned this year, the one that I’ve been enjoying the most has definitely been nail art. My polish collection has grown over the past year. I now have over 100 polishes.

Zoya Stripey Love Fest! Raven, Trixie, Ziv, Fei Fei

Zoya Stripey Love Fest! Raven, Trixie, Ziv, Fei Fei

I wore this look last weekend and loved it. It wasn’t hard to do at all, I painted all my nails black with Zoya Raven, then used a striper brush to add the lines with 3 different metallic colors from Zoya. Trixie (silver), Ziv (gold), Fei Fei (metallic silvery blue).

After taking it off  to change my polish, I found a tear in my thumb nail. I was so sad I had to clip them all down to nubbins. Here’s what I did in my free time today as my kids napped.

Franken polish - my own light blue concoction using Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear White On, Essie Chinchilly, OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls

Franken polish – my own light blue concoction using Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear White On and a drop or two of China Glaze Man Hunt, Essie Chinchilly, OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls

Last week I started playing around with making my own nail polish shades. Since Sally Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear polish isn’t terribly expensive, I picked up several bottles of White On. It’s a favorite white shade of mine. I started adding drops of other colors I had in my stash to make pretty pastel shades for spring. I put them all in empty Seche Vite top coat bottles. I stopped throwing them away months ago when I started thinking about making my own colors. I really like this pretty shade of blue. It seemed just right for a cloudy set of nails.

Although this year has been a year of falling in love with nail polish and nail art, I still have my first love: Lipstick. I’ll show you some new swatches in the next few days. Thanks again for reading!

Please tell me, what has been the best part of your last 12 months? I’d love to know.

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Flower Beauty Lip Products Review

I’ve been waiting to share this review with you. I managed to take the pictures myself. You know those awkward arm’s length pictures people take of themselves on vacation, that’s what I did. Only I had a digital SLR camera with a flash at arm’s length. I should have put some of the epic photo fails here, but it’s already a photo heavy post. So here we go!

If you’re not familiar with Flower Beauty, it’s Drew Barrymore’s brand new cosmetic line. It’s available only at Wal-Mart. The idea is high-end products at drugstore prices. Of course I was very intrigued and wanted to see if the ideal held up in reality. I was interested in trying out more of the line, but my local Wal-Mart only had a 3-sided end cap display with nail polish, mascara, eye liner, and 4 types of lip products that will all be featured here in this post.

Princess and the Peony Lip Butter and Pretty in Petunia Lip Gloss

Princess and the Peony Lip Butter and Pretty in Petunia Lip Gloss

Flower Lip Butter in Princess and the Peony

Flower Lip Butter in Princess and the Peony

This first lip swatch is the Lip Butter in Princess and the Peony. I like the way it feels on my lips. It’s very sheer in one swipe, but build-able. It doesn’t stay for hours on your lips because it’s a lip butter. I found that this lasted about 3 hours max on my lips before it looked like I wasn’t wearing anything. I would’ve re-applied long before, but I wanted to see how long before it was completely gone. I think that the darker shades might last longer. What I don’t like about his product is the packaging. It’s way too big. It’s enormous actually. The odd thing about it is, when you take the cap off, how small the bullet of product looks. It’s almost as if they are over compensating for such a small amount of product. I would like it much better in a slimmer package. I also have a difficult time getting the cap to snap back on properly. Of all the lip products in the post, the cap on this product gives me the most hassle. Over all, I like the product. I wish there was more of it in the package, and different packaging all together.

Flower Shine On Lip Gloss in Pretty in Petunia

Flower Shine On Lip Gloss in Pretty in Petunia

This Lip Gloss in Pretty in Petunia is so wearable. It’s a lovely coral/pink shade that is easy to wear. I also love that it’s not sticky. It’s also one that leaves my lips feeling hydrated after wearing it. It’s not terribly long wearing, it’s a gloss after all, but I didn’t find myself reaching for it constantly. I like the formula of this gloss. It’s got enough pigment that you can see the color of it on your lips easily, and it’s smooth and easy to apply. It’s also a nice shine without being over the top.

Rose Bud Gloss Lip Color, Flamingo Flower and Petal Kiss Velvet Lip Color

Rose Bud Gloss Lip Color, Flamingo Flower and Petal Kiss Velvet Lip Color

Flower Velvet Lip Color in Petal Kiss

Flower Velvet Lip Color in Petal Kiss

This lipstick was not in my initial haul. I went back for this shade. The two colors I got initially, I picked based on the colors on the bottom of the tube. They seemed like pretty, but not overly vivid colors. I was totally wrong. They are extremely vivid. I picked this one up a few days later to have a wearable shade for work and every day.  This is called Petal Kiss and is a matte lipstick. I like that it’s creamy when you apply it. Even though it’s totally matte, you still have a smooth and soft feeling on your lips. After a few hours it can be a bit drying. I find that to be true with most matte lipsticks, even the high-end ones. This one out performed all of my drugstore matte lipsticks. It also lasted for nearly 6 hours. I decided to wear it with a quick swipe of lip balm underneath and it’s perfect.

Flower Velvet Lip Color in Flamingo Flower

Flower Velvet Lip Color in Flamingo Flower

This is another Velvet Lip Color (matte lipstick) in Flamingo Flower. Basically a bright, pop pink. This is a great shade for spring and summer. I’m wearing it now with BB cream, skinny black eye liner, blackest black mascara, concealer an a hint of blush and highlighter. It’s so pretty and fresh. This one fades, but never seems to go away. It leaves a stain on my lips. Since it’s such an intense color, it’s so very obvious when my lips are chapped. They are a bit in the picture. (Oops) I make sure to exfoliate before wearing this shade, use a lip balm, and let it have time to sink in, then line my lips in a neutral shade before applying this color directly from the tube. It’s a fun color, but not one for every day, or every occasion.

Flower High Shine Lip Color in Rose Bud

Flower High Shine Lip Color in Rose Bud

I always love a red lipstick, but when looking for shades from the Flower line I specifically tried to not get a red lip color. I tried really hard. I looked at the bottom the tube where the color swatch is and this one looked more coral pink to me. Well, a deep coral pink, but anything but red. I also will say, I’m never one to swatch products in the store. All the drugstore products are sealed and for sale. I’d love it if they had testers, but those days are over. I don’t remember seeing testers in the drugstore since my mom was buying products there. So, I buy blindly. (and with hope) It’s a beautiful color, but not what I wanted. Beware the color swatches on the displays, and the colors on the bottom of the lipstick tubes. They aren’t always accurate.

That aside, I love the formula of this lipstick. This to me was the closest to a high-end lipstick for a drug store price. It felt so smooth and creamy on my lips. The shine was also amazing. I had a better picture showing the shine, but it was terribly out of focus. This lipstick reminded me of the Lancome Color Design formula or the Estee Lauder Pure Color formula. I was actually swatching this Flower lipstick alongside these two Lancome and Estee Lauder formulas to see how they felt. Texture, drag on the lip, shine, opacity, and it was amazing. This little $6.98 lipstick from Wal-Mart performs like a high-end lipstick. Lancome Color Design sells for $22, and Estee Lauder Pure Color sells for $25. I have several of both.

If you’re wondering if it’s worth it, I’d say give it a go. My only draw back is the inability to try the colors out first. Do some research online before going to Wal-Mart. Check with other beauty blogger and see their reviews of other colors. Look for real swatches. Make sure the colors you’re buying are the colors you really want. Even though I can wear all the colors I got, I wasn’t expecting what I got. I found the colors on the lipstick tubes to be misleading. They aren’t accurate all the time.

The Flower lipsticks have the color on the tube. Beware, it's not a perfect color match to the product inside.

The Flower lipsticks have the color on the tube. Beware, it’s not a perfect color match to the product inside.

I’m excited to try some new Flower products when my local Wal-Mart starts to stock the complete collection. If I pick up anymore of them, I’ll let you know. What are you enjoying from the drug store these days? Have you tried any of the Flower products from Wal-Mart?

P.S. I have a YouTube review if you’re interested.

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Flower Cosmetics – Nail Polish Part 2

I know, I know. I promised a makeup related post. I have 4 new lip products to share with you from Flower Beauty. (Drew Barrymore’s new cosmetic line) It’s hard to find someone to take the pictures of me wearing the lip colors. My normal partner in crime (husband) has been working late and when he comes home, I feel bad asking him to take endless picture of lipsticks. I could take low quality pictures from my phone camera, but that would just be awful. I’ll wait. Maybe I’ll just have to settle for a swatch on my hand.

Here’s another nail color I picked up at Walmart for $4.98. This one is called “I LavenDare You”. It’s such a pretty color. I was trying to see if it would look better with, or without flash. I still don’t think I quite caught the shade. It has more of lilac shade to it than these pictures show. Something else I couldn’t manage to catch in these pictures was the slightest sparkle I saw in the polish when I pulled the brush out and started to paint my nails. It’s not glitter, and I’m not sure quite how to describe it. Maybe I’m not enough of a technical nail junkie yet. It surprised me because I couldn’t see it while it was in the bottle, and it was so pretty and subtle on the nail.

These photos are with 2 coats. I think a 3rd might have helped the color show up a bit more. Next time I wear it, I’ll use 3.

Flower Beauty Polish in I LavenDare You - 2 Coats - No Flash

Flower Beauty Polish in I LavenDare You – 2 Coats – No Flash

Flower Beauty Polish in I LavenDare You - 2 coats - With Flash

Flower Beauty Polish in I LavenDare You – 2 Coats – With Flash

I don’t have a lilac shade quite like this one, and I love how pretty and feminine it is. I think there is a good chance I’ll be getting more of these polishes. Especially since they’re $4.98 each.

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Flower Cosmetics – Nail Polish

I’m not sure if you’ve heard, but Drew Barrymore has launched a new line of cosmetics called Flower. It’s going to be sold only at WalMart beginning January 31st. That’s the official launch date, but I’ve already found an end cap with Flower products on it at my local store. I’m going to do a longer post in a few days with a few more products, but I wanted to show you a lovely new polish I picked up.

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Flower in Gorgeous Gerbera – two coats

This color is Gorgeous Gerbera and retails for $4.98. It’s 0.4 oz. There are 16 shades in the collection at the moment, and most of them are nudes and pastels. There are some deep shades, but I loved that spring is coming soon, and there are so many lovely pastels. I thought it was a fantastic idea to start the collection with some beautiful pastels for spring and early summer.

I think that if you’re looking for office appropriate colors, you’ll find something you can wear. I love that there are also some beautiful deep colors that catch the eye. Many of these colors can be worn by so many women. I also think that the $4.98 price is so affordable.

The formula was a little thick for me, but it definitely needed 2 coats. I used a quick dry top coat, and it turned out perfect. I love that this polish looks glow-y on my nails. I just can’t stop looking at them. (in a good way)

I picked up a pretty lavender shade that I’ll probably wear tomorrow.

Once I get a chance to take some more pictures, I’ll show you the lip products I got from Flower. I’m excited to see more of these products in my local Walmart.

If you want to find out more about the Flower cosmetic line, check this out.

I can’t believe that I have 4 new lip products from Flower that I haven’t even opened yet! That’s unheard of for me. I’ll have to correct that soon. Let me know if you’ve tried out the new brand of nail polish. I’d love to hear from you!

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Glitter Nails

I feel like I should change this blog name to “The Nail Polish Gal”. I’m constantly posting about polish. I’ve been doing that lots recently. I promise, I do have several makeup related posts brewing in my brain right now. They just need some time.

Earlier this month I mentioned that Zoya, my favorite brand of polish was having a Color Your World promo for the New Year. They offered 3 polishes for free, and asked that you pay $10 for shipping and handling. It was a fantastic deal since each polish is normally $8 each. I just checked, and after receiving the 3 I got with the promo, I now have 52 shades of Zoya polish. A little over board maybe, but I love everything about this polish line.

  1. They are vegan
  2. They are 5 Free , they don’t use toluene, camphor, formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin and DBP (dibutyl phthalate)
  3. They offer color spoons (check out the video)
  4. They have amazing promos regularly (like the one that got me 3 amazing polishes for $10 shipping)
  5. They have over 300 colors to choose from
  6. They have amazing customer service

Here’s one amazing color I got during the promo called Aurora

I was debating if I needed another purple, but look at that! It’s amazing. Oh, and I loved the glitter. I find that I love glitter polishes more than I thought I ever would. After deciding to wear it the other day, I wanted to pair it with something else. So I pulled out several other colors. I had to swatch them all to see what would look the best with it.

zoya glitter-3Starting on the left, every other swatch is Aurora. The first non-Aurora swatch is Zoya Katherine. It’s a jelly in 2 layers. It might have looked better in 3 layers. Next is Zoya Toni. Then China Glaze Glistening Snow, China Glaze Champagne Kisses and Color Club Put a Pin In It (Birchbox Exclusive).  I even asked my husband’s advice, but didn’t take it. He was leaning towards China Glaze Glistening Snow, but Champagne Kisses works better with my skin tone.

zoya glitter-1

zoya glitter-2

If you haven’t had the chance to try Zoya polish yet, you can in a extremely easy way. If you click this link, you can receive a free bottle of polish with your first order.

Here’s what the Zoya website says about the “Share the Love” link.

“When someone clicks on your personal link and sets up an online account, a coupon for a FREE Bottle of Zoya Nail Polish will automatically be placed in their account and can be used immediately on their current order. TIP: If you use this coupon and add 2 more polishes to your order, you get free shipping too! The coupon will appear in the “My Coupons/ Promos” section of their “My Account” Page.”

So try Zoya and get a free bottle of polish. If nothing else, set up an account now for the times they do amazing promos. If you follow them on Facebook or Twitter you’ll hear about them there. I also love their Pinterest account. I love looking at amazing pictures of nails. Especially if they are lacquered up in my favorite polish.

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I Heart Nails!

OPI Don't Pretzel My Buttons and OPI Die Another Day

OPI Don’t Pretzel My Buttons and OPI Die Another Day

I was tired of the dark polish I had been wearing for the past several weeks. I’ve  been sporting black, dark blue, jeweled purple, and wine tones. I thought something lighter was in order. This OPI shade in “Don’t Pretzel My Buttons” always makes my fingers look so long. I was also hankering to do some nail art. By the time I started painting my nails last night, it was 10:30, so I didn’t do anything elaborate. I pulled out my dotting tool and grabbed “Die Another Day” from OPI’s Skyfall Collection. Making hearts are so easy.

This manicure will only last until the end of the day tomorrow, but lots of friend saw it today and loved it! It reminds me of Valentines day!

What are you wearing on your nails these days?

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