Update–Layla Tries: CND Vinylux Nail System

Update–Layla Tries: CND Vinylux Nail System

Even as I start to write this post, I am reminded of the experience I’m about to relay, and I’m…thoroughly annoyed. To say the least. I had high hopes for this one…

tyra banks rooting for you GIF

What I have now? A lingering sense of disappointment and a fresh, shiny manicure that I know I can count on because I feel mildly traumatized by my Vinyl experience.

Before we go any further, if you haven’t already, please read my first post about this nail polish system here.

Spoiler alert: we didn’t make it to 7 days girls and gents. Oh no, instead we made to day 5.

evelyn awkward face GIF

It’s okay though. It’s cool. It’s fine. Really. Because I really learned something about myself: I value a good manicure for a variety of reasons. Mostly, because it’s a good way to feel polished, put together and ready to conquer for a very small investment. You can change it to suit your moods, tell a visual story and communicate who are. Manicures are important to me. Also, I talk with my hands regularly enough that it matters. It just does. I like what I like.

OK, enough life lessons. Let’s get to the review.

Day 1: My manicure is fresh, shiny and basic. I like basic. I’m turning 30 this year, basic appeals to me. I finish applying the system quickly as it was pretty straight forward and the instructions were easy. I feel like money and am checking my hands every other minute.

dude fresh manicure GIF

Day 2: Nothing new or fancy. Still shiny. No chips.

Day 3: This day was like finding out the guy you’ve gone on 2 dates with has a girlfriend. You’re blindsided. Day 3 wasn’t pretty and neither was my mood. I’m over it already. Keep in mind, I sealed the tips of my nails with color and topcoat. The shine dulls a bit starting today but easily comes back with hand moisturizer or cuticle oil. If I wasn’t writing about my experience, I’d have removed the polish at the start of Day 3. Take a look for yourself (and excuse my cuticles):

Day 3 Vinylux
CND Vinylux, Day 3 (Left Hand)
Day 3 Vinylux _ Right Hand
CND Vinylux, Day 3 (Right Hand)

Day 4: Not much different from yesterday. No change in chipping or wear on the tips. New nail growth is just beginning to peak through but doesn’t look terrible. Thankfully, the new MAC lipsticks I ordered arrive in the mail and I have a happy distraction because I’m still over this. I can’t wait to get rid of this manicure because as Marie Kondo teaches us, it doesn’t bring me joy. Around 8pm, I cave and do the only thing I think can help without full on cheating…file my nails down a tiny bit so it doesn’t look like I’m completely a hot mess. It helps, but doesn’t solve all my polish problems. I give up and go to bed eventually.

Day 5: The chips are making me antsy and I feel self conscious, hiding my hands and nails from anyone who I think might catch a glance and judge my entire life, because honestly, I would. Does this system last 7 days? Maybe for a more relaxed, go with the flow type of person. But with me? NOPE. No sir, no thanks. The “manicure” (can we really call it that if it doesn’t perform? I feel petty) comes off. I’m instantly relieved.

Day 6: New manicure, who dis?

evelyn im back bitches

Final thoughts: I’m glad I tested the mini kit version of this nail system because after being curious about it’s performance for so long and being excited about its color offerings, had I purchased full size bottles and it “performed” the way it did for me–which in my opinion, was to not perform at all–I would’ve been beyond disappointed and annoyed. I obviously take my nails seriously and feel that as far as development and production goes, especially in the drugstore space, it’s relatively easy to get a good formula and keep the price point affordable. With that said, I’m overall just confused about this system and all the rave reviews it gets.

Of course, everyone is different and if you decide to try this system I would do start with a mini kit and go from there.

Would I purchase again? No.

malaysia girl bye

…but it’s good to try new things!!

Until next time!

xo-Layla

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Layla Tries: CND Vinylux Nail System–Does It Really Last 7 Days?

Layla Tries: CND Vinylux Nail System–Does It Really Last 7 Days?

As you may already be aware, one of my beauty resolutions was to try to leave give my nails a chance to reach their natural, full potential. I like to try different nail shapes and I find that having length is personally the best day for me. However, this would mean I would need to make less frequent polish changes a way of life. Fine, whatever.

So, if I’m going keep this resolution I need 2 things: a long wear DIY system, and a color range that will keep me interested and cover all of my bases (work, play, in between).

Fast forward to earlier this week when I’m at CVS on my way home from work and I’ve got my items in hand, and I make to check out line and BOOM…everything goes quiet because I see the cutest, mini nail polish system kit. Upon further inspection? It’s CND’s Vinylux 7 Day Wear system in one of its best selling shades: “Married to Mauve.” My first thought? “OK, CND–this is genius. Second thought? “Grab. One. Now.”

And, here we are: 20 minutes after application with a shiny manicure in a classic color. But will it last 7 days though?? We’ll see. I’m optimistic. But, I’m also ready for heartbreak. I’ve been on the fence about trying this system for what seems like years now…and each time, I get really close to purchasing a full size color and topcoat (which are the only 2 steps you need, as base is included with color) and then I balk at the potential financial loss of upwards of $20 if the manicure doesn’t work out. Will this mini kit, I feel safer to try and if it doesn’t work out, it’ll be much easier for me to simply throw the tiny bottles away–no guilt, no fuss, just trial and error.

The mini duo sets come in other colors but I won’t lie to you–they’re scattered and hard to find. I’ve only seen the mauve color at my local CVS, and I know that Ulta has the duo in the shade “Wildfire” which you can check out here. But beyond that? Finding other colors may be a full-time search. So, either of the two colors I mentioned are perfectly adequate for simply trying this out. The full size colors are available at many more retailers (including Walgreens, Ulta, CVS, and Target) so if we end up loving this system, we’ll have no trouble building our collection up!

Okay here’s the deal: I’ll test this for 7 days and take pictures on Days 3, 5, and 7 (possibly 8 if I need to stretch through Sunday Brunch before removing) and on the last day, I’ll post an update with my thoughts and a final decision on whether I’ll be purchasing more colors or not. Sound good? Cool. I’m excited too ;)

See you in a week! Stay shining–just like the best manicures xo

Layla

Head to Toe: My Fave Exfoliators

Head to Toe: My Fave Exfoliators

How long is your daily body care routine? Does it change on the weekend when you (presumably) have more time? My body care routine is about 30 minutes on weekdays. On weekends? All bets are off. I get to luxuriate and it’s fantastic. Self-care is important and it can look like anything to anyone. For me, weekends are for the additional at-home spa moment. Whether it’s a calming shower or bath, followed by a rich moisturizer before I go back to bed, or it’s a DIY manicure and/or pedicure, it’s all important and it all feels absolutely wonderful. Whatever your energy level allows, do it.

One of my most loved things to do is to exfoliate head to toe while I’m in the shower, when I step out I feel like a new, pampered person. Keep reading for the products that I use, and love:

Face: 

Acure Organics Brightening Facial Scrub, $3.99 for 1 Fl. Oz, Target 

This is one of my newest facial scrubs, I think I received the trial size (1 fl. oz) as part of a Target Beauty Box. No matter how it came to me, I’m just glad it did. This is a nice scrub for the face, but it requires a light hand, as it can be too abrasive if you scrub your face with too much pressure. Just a light, circling motion will do you just fine. And yes, your face instantly looks a little brighter after rinsing off.

Modern Friction Nature’s Gentle Dermabrasion, $21-40, Origins 

Not one of my most beloved scrubs and I think it could be more gentle, especially since the word is included in its title and packaging, but it’s effective. This is your pick if you are more mindful of ingredients, environmental impact, and the like.

Derma-E Anti-Wrinke Vitamin A Glycolic Scrub, $13.99, Ulta  

I don’t use this scrub often, but I do like it when I use it and I have a feeling that with its specific targeting towards wrinkles, I’ll be using it more and more (hello, year 29). Give this a go, if you’re starting to see wrinkles in places on your face that you’re not okay with (for me, I’m okay with laugh lines, forehead wrinkles though? No, thanks)

Hands:

Just A Minute 60-Second Manicure Scrub, $12, Bath and Body Works 

This citrus fragranced, sugar scrub isn’t necessary, but it’s a nice treat to have around. Your hands take a beating daily from all of the touching, shaking, washing, typing, etc. Keep the skin on your hands looking young, and bright by using this about once a week, and following it with a rich, creamy lotion or oil.

Body:

Soap & Glory Flake Away Body Polish, $13.99, Target  

I had been hearing about this sugar exfoliator for months before I decided to finally give it a try. That was almost a year ago, and I have literally used every ounce of this gentle, moisturizing product since first trying it. It took a little getting used to, as my skin is typically dry and itchy and so I was unsure of how often I should use this, but once I got the hang of it and starting using it once weekly, my skin began to rebel less and become less dry and itchy, and it holds moisture much longer. If you have dry, sensitive, itchy or otherwise timid skin, sugar exfoliators are going to be your go-to, leave the salt scrubs alone. Your skin will thank you.  Also, I have to mention this scrub’s scent, which is the brand’s Original Pink fragrance and includes bergamot, mandarin, rose, peach, strawberry, jasmine, and a few other yummy notes. You’ll be hooked immediately.

Shea Exfoliating Sugar Body Scrub, $7-$24.00, The Body Shop 

If you’re like me and sometimes want something more less fragrant (this smells faintly like the Shea nut it is derived from), and more down to earth, then this is the sugar scrub for you. Also, for the sensitive or irritate skin types, this scrub gets the job down with no fuss. It’s also moisturizing, although less than the Soap & Glory polish, so you’ll have to be ready to hop out of the shower, apply another moisturizer and lock it in before your skin has a chance to fully dry. If you’re looking for a way to try out sugar exfoliators, this is a good introduction as you can purchase a small size (1.7 fl.oz) for only $7. Can’t beat that!

Feet: 

Earth Therapeutics Refreshing Foot Scrub, $4.96, Walmart 

I use this in the shower, even though the directions explicitly tell you to use this on dry feet. The shower is easier for me. This is great for use in between professional pedicures to keep your feet from becoming too dry, cracked and crusty–not cute in warm weather, sandal season. This scrub is quick and easy. Note: if you use this on dry feet, as directed, then you may experience some tingling as it contains peppermint and tea tree oil. That’s normal, but of course, if you feel uncomfortable in any way, rinse your feet, and find something more soothing for your dogs.

Those are my exfoliator picks, I hope you enjoyed reading about them and that you’ll give one, two or a few, a chance. How often do you give your body a fresh skin start? Let me know by leaving a comment.

Talk soon, xo-Layla
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Drugstore Goodies, Part II

Drugstore Goodies, Part II

I’m back! Boy, can’t believe it’s been almost 24 hours since we last chatted. Time flies when you’re…living life (hey, it can’t always be fun, right?)

Okay, so you know the deal. I love to pick up things in drugstores. I hit up 3 this weekend…yada, yada, yada.

Here are the last 5 items I got from my drugstore roundup:

Studio 35 Beauty Pumice Stone, price varies dependent on Walgreens location: My feet loves warm and cozy things, namely socks. Feels great, especially in the colder months but come summer my poor feet are in need of a lot of attention. While I haven’t tried this yet, one look at the uniquely shaped, coarse tool and it was a no brainer. Tossed it right into my cart. Can’t wait to soak my feet in my brand new makeshift pedicure tub (hint: I got it at Home Depot) and scrub away to super soft skin.

CoverGirl Clump Crusher Extensions Lashblast Mascara in Very Black, $8.99: I liked the original version well enough so decided to pick this up. For some reason, I feel like the brush is slightly smaller. This alone makes it a little harder for me to get to my lashes which are in between skimpy and normal. This won’t be my everyday mascara, but I’ll most likely end up using it when I’m in a bind: like I’m in a rush to get out the door but I’ve run out of my usual mascara. If you were thinking of getting this, I would think twice. For the price of a few lattes, it’d be a shame to purchase this and not be happy.

Burt’s Bees Hydrating Lip Balm with Coconut & Pear, $2 (on sale at Rite Aid): Love the tropical, fruity scent. Not a fan of the texture for this one if you’re into layering it under other lip products but is a great lip moisturizer on its it. Speaking of layering: if you do like to have a little moisture as foundation before swiping on another lip product, my holy grail is Burt’s Bees Honey formula.

Nivea A Kiss of Cherry Fruity Lip Care, $1 (on sale at Rite Aid): Very moisturizing; beautiful, natural looking sheer wash of color. Need I say more?

TRIM Nail Care Sticks, $6: These are quite the handy little nail tools (no pun intended). There are 4 in each pack, each with dual ended purposes. One end looks like your standard orange stick. You’d use this side to push back cuticles. The other end is wrapped in colored texture. This end is for cleaning underneath your nails. Effective, simple, inexpensive. Buy these.

Don’t forget, tomorrow is my personal beauty consultation with Jodie from DooBop!!! I was going to post about it right after the call but I think I will wait until I receive my first box and give you one post filled with DooBop chat. How’s that sound? Great? Good. Great minds and all…

Well, time for me to hit the hay, um is it written somewhere that once you turn 26 your bed time suddenly becomes 9pm? BUM-MER.

Talk soon.

xo, Layla

Drugstore Goodies, Part I

Drugstore Goodies, Part I

Hey there!

I hate that I’m posting so sporadically but I’m always thinking of you and dying to chat about EVERYTHING, my schedule and health have both been pretty unpredictable lately. But, we’re together now and that’s all that matters…

Exactly one week ago today I turned 26. It was a big deal for me, I had mixed feelings. But I also had the best time celebrating and only just began to wind down yesterday. Like many adults, I went to the office on my birthday (where my coworkers definitely showered me with birthday love) On Saturday, I went for a manicure, frozen yogurt and the most delicious sushi from a local haunt (shout out to Miya’s Sushi in New Haven, CT!!) and had a BLAST. On Sunday, I went to breakfast with my dad (what’s better than Birthday pancakes?) and got to catch up with a friend who I haven’t seen in years over local pizza (we’re kinda famous for it) and wine coolers. Overall: I had one very low key but memorable birthday.

By now you’re like “get to the goods woman.” Don’t worry, it’s coming. I stopped into the Big 3: Rite Aid, CVS and Walgreens between Friday and Saturday and picked up a few items from each. Keep reading for what I picked up and mini reviews for any items I’ve already tried:

Maybelline The Nudes Palette, $12.99: This is the product that started the entire hunt. I had seen it flipping through my monthly round up of magazines and set out to find one. IT WAS HARD. So hard, I had to visit 3 stores before finally landing on it (one of the last ones) at a CVS the next town over. This beautiful palette carries 16 neutral, smoky shades: some matte and some with a soft shimmer. This is a great basic palette for everyday and for the working girl (or guy) who’s just starting out in the professional world. Another great thing that got me excited about this palette is the accompanying video that helps guide you on the types of looks you can create with it. Unfortunately, the web address provided on the packaging links to an error page for me and I can’t find any videos on Maybelline’s YouTube page as of this posting. BUM-MER. Anyways, it’s still a beautiful palette, so I encourage you to give it a try (purchase it from Walgreens if you can, as their policy is the most return friendly) and see what sort of magic you can create.

Covergirl Perfect Point Plus Eye Pencil in Midnight Blue, $4.99: When I was younger, I would rock a navy and gold eye look like it was nothing and be IN LOVE with my look. I embraced my large, almond shaped eyes much more then and wanted them to be on full display. Flash forward 10 years, and I’m definitely in that frame of mind again. Cue this remarkably blend able navy liner with a smudger built in on one end. Navy blue liner is not nearly as drastic as it sounds, it’s actually quite wearable and is a mild and stunning way to do something different and create a gorgeous eye look.

Essie Nail Lacquer in Limo-Scene and Blanc, $8 (each): I popped into CVS on my way to my manicure hoping to get the Maybelline palette but if nothing else to pick up my manicure colors (if you can’t already tell, I opted for a French Manicure). I’m a little anal about bringing my own colors because some nail salons (note: certainly not ALL) use nail polish thinner to make their polishes last longer and be able to do more manicures without having to constantly purchase new product. Good for them, not so great for you if you’re looking for a manicure with decent staying power. These colors are beautiful, and for my fellow permanently tanned ladies, yes you can rock these colors and look perfectly polished and ready for any situation. I’m almost positive I’ll be rocking the french manicure look for many more moons.

Revlon Colorstay Moisture Stain in Milan Moment and India Intrigue, $9.99 (each): These colors are vibrant, yet sheer and are very moisturizing. Milan Moment is a hypnotic mixture of red, coral, true orange in the tube that glides on evenly, is sheer and builds in opaque coverage at your control. India Intrigue is a bright almost see through true fuchsia tone in the tube. I haven’t worn it yet but I’m sure it won’t disappoint.  They’re my new favorite lip products and I’ll definitely be picking up more colors from this collection to wear year round. Word to the wise: I always layer some Burt’s Bees Honey Lip Balm under any lip product. This, coupled with eating/drinking and talking meant that my lip gloss only lasted about 3-5 hours depending on my activity level. It didn’t bother me, I was happy to reapply the creme-gel like treat but it may bother some of you so be forewarned!

Revlon Grow Luscious Bold Lacquer Mascara in Black, $7.99: I was intrigued by this product’s color formula. Revlon claims that most comparable (I’m assuming mass drugstore is the comparison base) use a mixture of dull grays with just a hint of true black to come up with their colors. While I do like the pigment payoff, I’m a little less sold on the actual wear of this mascara. It seems drying and flakes to the touch. When removing it with my trusty Almay Eye Makeup Remover pads (and ever so gently) I lost 3 (!!) precious lashes. I will keep trying this for a little while longer and hope that it gets better with use or that I got a tube of a bad batch and keep you all posted.

That’s it for Part I, there are  five more items which I’ll save for tomorrow in the interest of keeping it (semi) short and sweet.

On Thursday, I’ll be writing about my DooBop consultation as I’ve just joined their monthly box subscription service.

Looking forward to it glossies, talk soon.

xo, Layla

 

 

Manicure Monday: CoverGirl Outlast Stay Brilliant Nail Gloss in Wine to Five

Manicure Monday: CoverGirl Outlast Stay Brilliant Nail Gloss in Wine to Five

covergirl nail polish wine to fine bottle

Happy Manicure Monday!

Mondays suck. Even a good Monday sucks a little. But manicures can pick up any day from the gutter and turn it around.

For me, Mondays also mean a new week of coursework, required readings, assignments, etc. Today, I just couldn’t muster the motivation or the energy to get through any reading or post to any discussion boards, so I chose an at home manicure instead. Yes, that’s right, I have chosen sweet procrastination over being a responsible adult and student today and guess what? I’m totally cool with it because I’ve got great, glossy digits to show for it.

This week’s must try color is from CoverGirl’s Outlast Stay Brilliant Nail Gloss line. I’m really liking their nail polishes. From creams to metallic offerings, they’ve got you covered. Earlier tonight, I purchased a bottle in the shade “Wine to Five.” At first glance it reminded me of Essie’s Bordeaux , but it’s actually lighter and more friendly for everyday wear, as it’s not as dark and severe. Check out the pic below:

covergirl nail polish wine to fine swatch

The really cool thing about this nail polish is its formulation–high gloss, lasts for approximately a week and includes a base coat as well as a chip resistant top coat. Which means you can get a insanely gorgeous manicure without having to reach for more than one bottle!

One coat of this shade provides an almost opaque, creamy coverage and I don’t feel as though I need another coat (although I’ll be doing one just because it’s a die hard habit)

Oh, and did I mention that it’s only $4.99? SCORE!

Guys, run don’t walk and try a color–any color–today.

If you do try a product, upload a pic! I’d love to see it. Happy painting.

xo, Layla

Manicure Monday: OPI San-Tan-Tonio

Manicure Monday: OPI San-Tan-Tonio

opi san tan tonio

I know what you’re thinking: if it looks good on me, what will it look like on fairer skin tones, right? No worries my lovelies, this shade is all for people, all days and looks great on everyone. Got a job interview? It’s perfect. Got a hot date? He’ll think you’re cute and polished. Want a neutral that isn’t sheer? Look no further.

The last neutral that OPI made that I loved (almost) this way, was discontinued. If this happens to San Tan-Tonio, then the gods help us all because I’m dropping everything and heading to OPI HQ and demanding an audience with Suzi forthwith. Extreme? Yes. But this color is completely worth it.

If you try it, let me know!

Do you glossies have any good nudes that you love? Please share!