Sunday, May 24, 2015

Blogging Thoughts and Changes

Thoughts

I feel like ever since August I've been in a blogging funk that I couldn't ever really snap out of. I think it was an accumulation of a few things First, my cat got really sick in August and needed life saving surgery. That kicked in my anxiety and depression big time and it took me a good 2 months to mostly snap out of that.

Secondly, I feel I became overwhelmed with nail polish. I used to have swatch-a-thons swatching 20-30 polishes in one go. I couldn't do that anymore. I used to find this relaxing, but now I HATED it. Not only was it time consuming and tiresome it was giving me headaches and the jitters breathing in nail polishes fumes for 7 hours at a time. Also, I couldn't keep up with all the nail polish out there. I can't keep up with all the indie brands, nor can I afford to purchase a ton of indies. It's too hard to be involved in all the indie groups or FB fan pages out there to know what's going on and who has what. Not to mention, there is so much drama with some indie brands I would rather just remain ignorant.

Mainstream brands haven't been peaking my interest lately either as I feel the interest in nail polish in the general public has gone down. Mainstream brands are where I find majority of my nail polish. Mainstream brands are not producing original or fun colors like they did 1-2 years ago. I already have 1,000+ of polish, it's hard for me to find something that sparks my interest these days.

That all being said, I'm probably only buying 15%-25% of what I used to buy. I don't have a ton to blog about. It's not because I do not like nail polish anymore. You wouldn't catch me dead without nail polish on my nails! I love painting my nails still and always have fun picking out colors to wear.

It's just I'm running out of material and when I accumulate 10-15 nail polishes the idea of swatching all of them is daunting. I also do not have the patience for nail art at all, so that's out of the question (sorry!).  I used to have 4-5 posts a week. When I set up a routine, and don't feel I can live up to it I beat myself up over it. I've felt like a failure for the past 10 months because the blogging process I used to have no longer is working for me. What happens? I either overdo it or under do it.  Hence why some weeks I have 5 posts up and others I may only 2. I felt a need to try to keep up my momentum when I had the material while burning myself out in the process and not having the desire to really keep it up.

I really thought about throwing in the towel a few times, the past few weeks especially. The thing is, while swatching may not be my favorite activity, writing and reviewing is what I love. Every time I go to write up a post I'm energized and full of things to say and share with you all. I love that aspect of blogging. I do also know that you can't have a nail blog without swatch pictures. That's when I go to thinking about how can I re-work my routine to make it work for my lifestyle and interests now.

Changes

The first thing I had to come to terms with was that I would not fail as a person and a blogger if I decided to reduce my number of posts per week and set a posting schedule. So, instead of shooting for 5 posts a week I'm going to shoot for 3. This way I only have to swatch 2-3 polishes a week instead of worrying about doing some enormous number and feel pressure to have posts up all the time.

*2 posts per week will be newer polish reviews
*1 post a week will be either a "Way-Cool Mani Wednesday" or "Throwback Thursday" post

The other issue is my new buying habits. I'm not purchasing the same number of nail polish I was in the past. I'm not going to have constant new material. What I do have is 1,000+ bottles of nail polishes I love who rarely see the light of day anymore. This is where Third Week Throwbacks comes in to play.

*The 3rd week of every month I'll be doing a week of throwback nail polishes. I'll be swatching and reviewing polishes that are 2+ years older. It will be like Throwback Thursday, just extended :). 

Finally, some flexibility. I love reviewing products in general. I'm always trying out new beauty, bath, hair, and so forth products from the drugstore or other stores. Same goes for food items, candles, and other odds and ends. I always have an opinion about them of course. Also sometimes I have some thoughts/opinions on blogging and nail polish topics. I want to share these opinion and thoughts with someone. Why not you guys?

*Saturday and/or Sundays I'll be either posting either reviews of some non-nail polish products or be discussing some blogging/nail polish topic. 

For the fist time in a long time I feel organized, confident, and good about what I'm doing blog wise. I will admit perfectionism was seeping into Imperfectly Painted, and it really caused me to lose my blog mojo. I allow myself to get overwhelmed so easily that's hard for me to sit down, break things down, and come up with a solution.

I found a solution, it took a LONG time, but I did! I want to thank you all for sticking with me. I know I'm not your traditional nail blog. This blog has always been a personal experiment, journey, and escape for me from the stresses of real life. I want to keep my blog this way, and I needed to stop getting in my own way.

Thank you for listening!

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Throwback Thursday: Orly Gumdrop

I have another Orly throwback to share with you today. One thing I've noticed since doing my throwback posts is how spoiled I am now with nail polish formulas. I have to thank indies for that. Mainstream polish formulas then and even now are very average to below average especially when it comes to pastels or neons. What's interesting is 5 years ago I would consider these older mainstream formulas and even current ones good, but now they're average to below average. This older Orly pastel really reminded me how thankful I am for amazing indie pastel cremes!

Gumdrop
 Gumdrop is a soft aqua/mint creme.

Collection: Orly Sweet Collection Spring 2010

Color: This is a beautiful colors. I like the softness of this color and that is has a touch more blue to it than other mint/aqua shades. I want to say this color was the beginning of the mint green craze back when I started getting into nail polish. The color is a beautiful pastel that isn't stark or too contrasting with my skin tone.

Formula: I don't think this formula is bad. It's really not, but compared to other pastel cremes I have today from KBShimmer and other indies it's lacking. The formula was OK by today's standards. I did find it did not level or smooth out evenly on my nail well. I used 2 coats above.

Price: I'm pretty sure this is part of the core line of Orly. I see it listed on Sally's and Ulta's website. You can also find this on other e-tailers in the $5-$8 range.

Overall: I love the softness and beauty of Gumdrop. It's a fun and perfectly spring-like color. The formula isn't my favorite, but it wasn't bad either. I have definite feelings of nostalgia with this one, but also would be more likely to use a similar color with a better formula.

My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 Paint Splatters
Happy Thursday!

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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

HPB Presents: May Flowers aka My Fail Mani

It's time for another Hobby Polish Bloggers link-up post. This month's theme was May Flowers. Oh joy. This theme really stumped me. I don't do nail art. I don't own a stamper. I don't own nail art supplies. I don't have any nail polish with flower shaped glitter. The past themes I could do some layering or other non overly artsy technique and get away with it. This month's theme was tricky. May flowers is pretty literal.

My first thought was I can get some of those Sally Hansen Salon Nail Polish Strips and create a fun mani using that as an accent nail. I know they had ones with floral designs. I scoured drugstores, Walmart, and Target, and didn't find a single one with a floral design. I know they have them online, but I guess they're not in stores now. I had to resort to using some really shoddy nail stickers. I suck at nail stickers. This mani sucks. May Flowers wasn't my month, but I tried!

Here was my pitiful result.

Polishes Used: Black Cat Lacquer Demeter, Lumina Lacquer Soleil, and Kiss Nail Art stickers.

This is why I should never do nail art, stamping, water decals, or anything of the sort. I have absolutely zero patience to let things dry. I ain't got time for that. I thought my polish was dry when I applied the stickers, but nope. The stickers also never laid flat, so fail there too. This is just a big giant mani fail of the century for me. No more floral themes please! I do like my color scheme though.....

Check out the more beautiful manis from my HPB friends below. They did a spectacular job, unlike myself!

   

    An InLinkz Link-up
   


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Monday, May 18, 2015

Indie Coalition for a Cause Supports Equality Now Fundraiser

I have a different post for you today. Something I find very important and valuable in my life is to give back. Every week I volunteer at the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando. I help provided enrichment activities, socialize, and help adopt out owner relinquished animals. This gives me meaning and purpose and is something I absolutely love to do. One thing I've always wanted was to be able to combine the concept of giving back with nail polish. 

This is where the Indie Coalition for a Cause comes in. I am so excited and grateful to be a part of this group. The Indie Coalition for a Cause is a group of independent nail polish makers and bloggers dedicated to supporting different charities across the globe. Our goal is to hold two fundraisers a year. Each fundraiser will support a different cause. We have decided to raise money for the charity Equality Now for our inaugural fundraiser.

Equality Now is an organization that advocates for the human rights of women and girls around the world by raising international visibility of individual cases of abuse, mobilizing public support through global membership, and wielding strategic political pressure to ensure that government enact or enforce laws and policies that uphold the rights of women and girls. Their areas of focus include discrimination in law, sexual violence, female genital mutilation and trafficking. The members of the Indie Coalition for a Cause are in full support of this charity as we both envision a world in which women and men have equal rights under the law and full enjoyment of those rights.

ICC Equality Now Fundraiser: How YOU Can Help

The wonderful indie makers that are members of the ICC have contributed custom nail polishes made for this specific event to help entice you to donate to this noble cause. Photographed below are the polish prizes, including a few non-custom extras. Donations are to be made to the ICC fundraiser located here in increments of $5 and those that wish to be included in the raffle drawing may enter the rafflecopter below at the end of this blog post. There are two prize packs for this raffle: one large prize and a second smaller one. At the time of this post, there are still a few polish prizes trickling in, so there will be even more for our generous donators!

Please note that this is not like my typical giveaway. In order to be eligible to win, you must visit the Crowdrise page here and donate to the campaign. The rafflecopter is set up such that the larger the donation, the more chances you get to win these beautiful polish prizes.

Alter Ego Nail Enamel
Can't Hide
Swatch courtesy of Adventures in Acetone

Girly Girl

Vintner

She Shines Top Coat

Black Dahlia Lacquer
Stand Up For Equality
Swatch courtesy of Beautee Luvr

Bergamot Cuticle Oil

Bohemian Polish
(formerly Finger Lickin' Lacquer)
At the Head of the River

Ellagee
Make Equality Reality

Firecracker Lacquer
What Do We Want? EQUALITY!

Nail Gems


Girly Bits Cosmetics
50/50

Justice

Time for Change

Literary Lacquers
Secret of Joy

Northern Star Polish
Embrace Yourself

Renaissance Cosmetics
Equality...Now!

Silly Bee's Chickadees
Come Together

Sonoma Nail Art
Equal Work Equal Pay

Strong Women Decals

Prize Pack #1

Prize Pack #2

I personally have donated $15 towards Equality Now on the Crowdrise site. Donations can be made to the ICC Equality Now fundraiser on the Crowdrise page linked here. All donations are handled by Crowdrise so you can rest assured that the money is going to this charity. Don't forget to hold on to your confirmation emails for tax purposes too!

On behalf of the ICC and women everywhere, I would like to thank you for your support! I would also like to personally thank the indie makers that have contributed prizes for this raffle; we couldn't have done it without you!

a Rafflecopter giveaway Pin It

Friday, May 15, 2015

KBShimmer Summer 2015 (9 of 28)

*The following products were provided to me in exchange for my honest review. 

It's KBShimmer Summer 2015 collection release day! This is a massive collection for summer. The entire collection includes 28 nail polishes. I have a handful of them to show you today! I will be breaking this post in 3 sections cremes, glitters/shimmers, and flakies so it's a little more organized review wise!

Cremes

Bahama Drama
Bahama Drama is a near neon deep peach cream..

Rum Me The Right Way
Rum Me The Right Way is a shocking yellow cream and the perfect swap for nude.

Sarong Place, Sarong Time
Sarong Place, Sarong Time is a vibrant purple cream.

Colors: These are vibrant and pastel like neons. The colors clearly pop and make a statement. These are colors that vary from the traditional neon and stand out in their own right.

Formula: The formulas on these were really nice. I used 2 coats on Bahama Drama and Sarong Place, Sarong Time. These were both easy to apply and I didn't have any trouble. Rum Me The Right Way being a yellow did have some typical yellow nail polish qualities. I did need 3 coats on this and it did have some evening out issues, but it an overall good formula in comparison to other yellows.

Price: These 3 are $7.50 each.

Glitters/Shimmers

Pink-a Colada 
Pink-a Colada is a cool-toned pink crelly polish with holographic glitters in lime green, light blue & pink.

Alloy Matey!
Alloy Matey! is a blingy silver packed with micro and fine silver holographic glitters.

We Be Jammin'
We Be Jammin' is a bright magenta with blue shimmer and micro holographic sparkle.

Colors: KBShimmer really nails it when it comes to glitters and shimmers. These are perfect for summer and offer something to fit all tastes. I say that every time with KBShimmer because that's the truth! The colors are spot on for summer.

Formula: Excellent formula on all of these. I used 3 coats on each and they all applied easily without any trouble.

Price: These are $8.75 each.

Flakies

*I really do not have the camera or lighting to photograph flakies how'd I like, so these photos are done underneath a daylight lamp without flash. I wanted to be able to capture the color shift as best as possible!

Take The Punny And Run
Take The Punny And Run is a color shifting metallic flakie shade that travels from fuchsia to lime green with shades of gold and copper between, the most vibrant shifting of the flake polishes.

Green Weaver
Green Weaver is a metallic flakie that shifts from a rosy pink, to an apple green, this shifting shade also shows hints of purple at extreme angles.

Look On The Nightside
Look On The Nightside is a metallic flakie shifting shade goes from a rich green, to a violet purple, offers hints of royal blue.

Colors: Is there really much to say here? Really? Fan-freaking-tastic. These are are stunners. The color shifts in these are prominent. The colors are saturated and vibrant. I love wearing these because no matter the angle or the light you'll get something different. Incredible.

Formula: These are all 3 coat opaque formulas. Applying flakies does take a little bit more patience than regular polish. Since they are irregularly shaped and tend to like to stick together it is a bit more tedious. That being said, I did not find it troublesome to apply these overall.. I did find applying these over a base made this process a bit smoother, but it is not necessary. I did not use a base in these swatches. These do layer nicely as well.

Price: These are $10.75 each.

***********

Overall: I'm blown away with this collection, I love the variety, quality, and fun this collection has. The stand outs here are the flakies for sure. These are absolutely beautiful and to be able to reach opacity in 3 coats is awesome! My favorites from the ones I have tried are Sarong Place, Sarong Time, We Be Jammin', and Green Weaver. I have a bit of an obsession with Green Weaver as it's the second week in a row I've worn it. The flakies I can say wear incredibly well. I've worn Green Weaver 6 days straight without a chip!

My Rating: 5 out of 5 *Golden* Paint Splatters

These were all released today! Check out the KBShimmer site to purchase!

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