Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Talk it Out Tuesday: The never-ending Swatch-a-thon

I was having issues coming up with today's topic. This is a more light-hearted one, but I'm curious to know how you other bloggers out there swatch and blog.

This is what I accomplished today. Some of these I was swatching for the blog, others I was testing out layering combinations.


I have a habit of letting my swatch pile build up for weeks...sometimes months. The only things I try to swatch ASAP are stuff I receive for review. I don't think this is the most practical way I can swatch stuff for my blog at all. I'm sure most of you know, the polish I have on my blog one day is rarely the polish I'm actually wearing. I really only do my nails 2-3 times a week max. This used to be different, I used to them every day or every other day, but my time has become more limited.

I always end up letting new polishes pile up, and then when I have a free day I sit and swatch, and swatch, and swatch. This last batch I was swatching from 10am-5pm, with a 30 minute break. This is always accompanied by catching up on shows on the DVR or Netflix. It's funny because the swatch pile is absolutely daunting to look at (which has caused me to put it off), but when I start swatching time goes by so fast. I really get lost in it. It is actually pretty relaxing. I do get to a point around 5 hours in where I have had about enough, and have to push through the rest.

I clearly make this harder on myself than it needs to be. I'm just the type of person who when they start a project I have to finish it.  It would probably easier if I had myself do 6 swatches of polishes every time I changed my nails, instead of swatching 30+ in one day.  I'm stubborn though, and will still let my swatch pile build up for weeks on end, and spend 7 hours one day catching up on it all. It does feel like quite the accomplishment when I get through though. It's just the way I like to do it!


Update: I figured I should add this, by using the word "swatch" I don't mean I just swatch these and I'm done with them forever. I do wear these polishes at some point as an actual manicure, it's just not the day I swatch them. I do things this way so I have a folder full of swatches to choose from that can set me up for weeks ahead. It's a time saver, and I enjoy doing my blog this way. I truly hope that me not wearing the polishes the day I post about them is not a let down to you all. :(


How about you bloggers out there? How do you manage to do your swatches for your blog? 


Happy Tuesday!

34 comments:

  1. I do my nails almost every day, maybe every other day if I just don't have time. I generally just take pics of my nails as soon as I'm done painting and then post from there. It's enough to get me by, but I also have a "beauty" blog so I feature more than just nails.. although at the moment I haven't had time to swatch anything else, so I feel like all I'm posting is nails.


    When I have PR products to review, those are at the forefront like you mentioned.. but other than that, I do what I can when I can!

    Swatching is just one of those things that you HAVE to make work. People have no idea how much time it takes!

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  2. I always have a crap ton (actual measurement ;)  in my "to swatch" pile.  For 2 reasons- #1: My kids only "allow" me a good solid hour of swatch time where they will leave me alone (I don't like swatching at night because I prefer day pictures).  After that hour, they are up my you-know-what, so I typically can only swatch one a day (unless there is an entire collection..I like doing those together so I make extra time). #2: There is something comforting about having an entire pile of "untrieds".  I know it makes no sense, but I love knowing they are there waiting for me (I am a hoarder, after all!).  On the other hand , I do get overwhelmed at times looking at the "work" I need to do.  It's a double edge (or is it 'edged'?  Not sure and too lazy to check!) sword!  I have to say, I TOTALLY agree that swatching can be relaxing!!!  Great topic, Stephanie! :)

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  3. I'm right there with you.  And I've been trying to swatch/edit a set of PR posts the past 2 days so I can get them up before I leave for vacation.  Last week I swatched a TON & went ahead with drafting them so I at least have content if I'm having an off week or whatever.  With my 6 y/o and my phone constantly ringing, it's a pain.  Though lately, I've been reading books in between layers so I make sure to give them time to dry. 

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  4. Uh... I don't.  I have never had PR samples that I really "needed" to swatch... so I just change my nail polish every day or two or three and post each new manicure as it happens.  I don't like the idea of sitting down and swatching polishes without actually wearing them, it seems wasteful and silly to me.  Obviously I like reading blogs and looking at the photos, but I always assume (wrong though I am) that people are actually wearing their nail polish.

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  5. I have only had to "swatch" a ton lately and that was because I got 2 PR bundles at once, but I also actually wore the polishes. I tend to just swatch what I am wearing, with the exception of my "What's on my toes" segment where I swatch on my hand my pedi polish. I hate how feet look in pictures.  Typically though, I just write about what I am wearing. With makeup looks sometimes, I will do them at night when I feel like playing around and then take photos to use later.

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  6. I don't get any PR samples so I don't have to swatch.  And I rarely buy an entire collection so I kinda don't see the point of swatching everything at once!  I just paint my nails (usually every day, I get bored after one day!!) and post it right away or on occasion que it up for a day I know I will be extremely busy.  Doing comparisons takes up most of my time, especially since I do them the same night as I put a fresh color on.  But so many people spoke up that they love them so I love doing it for them!!  And it lets me know what I have in my neverending collection too, so it's a win-win =))

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  7. I've been painting my nails every evening lately, so I usually just take pictures of that for my blog. I only do a swatch session if something comes up and I end up running low on posts. I could never swatch for 7 hours! I can do, like, ten polishes and that's it.

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  8. I've never "swatched" before. What I post is what I'm wearing at the moment. I usually wear a polish for two or three days before moving onto another color. Before starting my blog, I would wear a polish for a week, so that was a hard habit to break at first. I still have trouble removing something that looks absolutely fine and could be worn longer, but obviously I have to do things a little differently now that I have a blog.

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  9. I swatch my NOTD's for the most part. Slowly but surely a lot of my stash ends up getting blogged.  To keep track, I put a sticker on the top of the cap so I know what I haven't swatched yet.

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  10. It really does take up a lot of time, but at least it's spend doing something I like. 

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  11. I actually do get what you're saying. It is fun to have a whole stash of stuff you get to try at once, especially when you have variety of finishes and colors. It can be daunting too, but the process in the end is rewarding and relaxing. 

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  12. That's a good idea to read during that. I wouldn't of though of that. I definitely like the idea of having a lot of stuff I can choose from to post on. That's why I do these swatch-a-thons. 

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  13. Most of the stuff I swatch are not PR samples. Majority of stuff  is purchased. I like to have a variety of options as far as blog posts go and I like to pre-plan to save time. I don't see it as wasteful because even if I'm just swatching the polish then, it does get worn at some as a full manicure later on. I certainly wouldn't be a nail blogger if I wasn't wearing and enjoying my polish too! 

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  14. I would find it rare that a nail blogger would be wearing the swatched polish the same day as it is posted. Same with FOTD and OOTD. I don't think there's any deception. 

    I have two boxes, not counting one full of glitters, that are the to be swatched pile. It grows and I doubt I'll ever see them cleared out. Swatching PR stuff is my first priority too.

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  15. Sounds good to me. The way you do makeup looks is how I do my nail polish. I like to have a stash of stuff to choose from later to post on!

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  16. The majority of the stuff I swatch isn't PR :-/. I think my use of the word swatch is probably not correct. I do a lot of swatches in one sitting, but the polishes I swatch do get worn later on. If I had more time I'd probably spread my manicures and swatches out more, but I like my set up for now. I really like to have posts daily, and I think my fear is I won't have anything to show at some point , so I like to plan ahead. 

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  17. Well, lol the 7 hour shift happens maybe once every 3-4 months. When I don't procrastinate I can usually do them all in 3 hours, which I'm sure is crazy to some too! I think I have a fear of running out time and in turn not having stuff to post, so I just do it this way.

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  18. I've done the opposite of you. I used to do my nails every day before nail blogging, and now I've switched to 2-3 times a week. It seems counter-productive huh? I just have less free time now than I used too, so I try to plan ahead! 

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  19. That's a great idea! I need to do that. There are some polishes I need to re-swatch for my blog, because I swatched them way early on in my blogging and they were not the best photos. That's a whole other project I have to consider! 

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  20. Polish. Glitter. Rock & Roll!July 17, 2012 at 9:21 PM

    that's what i do too!  it makes it so much easier for me.  i also have a certain color sticker for good stamping polishes and good water marbling polishes.  i showed them in my stash post.

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  21. I have so many pictures of manis that I wore, but never post about.  The only time I maybe have on the same color is if it's for a challenge, and even then I try to be ahead of schedule.  I like to wear it first, then give my opinion later.  Sometimes I take the pictures and I don't remember what color it was, so now I take pictures of the name so I know.  I used to separate my polishes but I got them mixed up, so I'll have to go through them again :(

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  22. I am still at the point where I change my polish daily.  So usually what is on my blog is the shade I am wearing.  I have never done a swatch-a-thon like you do.  But I remember you mentioning this before and thought it was really interesting and sounded tiring!  I don't get any polishes for review, so what I am wearing each day is what I have in my collection.  I don't really have a rhyme or reason to what I will wear except when I am doing a challenge or on Friday Favorites with a Flair post.  I saw someone above mention putting a sticker on the top of the ones that were swatched....VERY good idea.  I keep pulling out the same ones and thinking "oh shoot, I already did that one".  I paint my nails at night when the kids go to bed and I am watching my favorite DVR'd shows.  I LOVE that time of the day....I look forward to it every night.  I think my eyes would go buggy if I swatched that many at a time!  And trying to get the right picture of each one???? youch!  Great job - you have an awesome blog!

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  23. before i change my mani everyday. lol but when the time i became busy of school projects, i rarely blog and swatch polishes,  so i have lots of untrieds polishes till now.. lol
    by the way i am having a BLOG SALE now. You can check it sweetie :) 

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  24. I think you need to be inspired to do swatches - so when the weather is right and everything else falls in place, I often do (or used to) swatchatons - I would not be able to say you do 6 tomorrow, 6 the days after either.
    But after I began to do new nail art basically every day swatches kind of lost their magic - not other bloggers, I do love those - but my own, so I rarely get around to do on nails swatches. I have a folder full of swatches to post, but they seem to come no further LOL Recently I started showing polishes on swatch sticks on the bottle, this way I can magnify and color correct so that the finished result is pretty color accurate on a calibrated screen...

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  25. I just post whatever I am wearing that day.

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  26. I have yet to figure out a system and my blog is suffering for it. I'm going to do a 30 day challenge next month and since I have today off of work and it's semi-sunny outside, I'm hoping to do some of that to have done ahead of time. I'm tight for money right now so I rarely get anything new but since I have around 500 polishes I need to just start swatching things I already have. Otherwise, if I do a mani that I really like I will take pics of it and write a post about it at some point.

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  27. Personally, I do not do swatch-fests. I like to just wear it. I tried doing swatching, and it just did not work for me. But to each their own, of course! :) If I want to test out layering, etc, I do it on a nail wheel. 

    I paint my nails every day. However, I do NOT post them in order. Most of my stuff is at least a week "behind", and not in the order I wore it. I paint my nails at night before bed, take indoor flash + non-flash pics, then in the morning before I leave for work I snap a sun pic. A nice little routine that works well for me, but obviously may not work for everyone. 

    I have started getting quite a bit of PR stuff and I am feeling the pressure to get those done! But, as I tell them straight up, I wear the polishes not swatch (I thought I would try the idea of swatching then wearing later; it doesn't work for me personally), and I will post my reviews one at a time, not all at once. Most have had positive reaction to it, whew! 

    I keep my untrieds in a big drawer of my Alex unit (and now in a box, as the drawer is full - eeeeek!) so I choose from those before anything else. I think it is great when an individual can find something that works for them! :)

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  28. I actually never do swatches besides polish I receive for review, and almost every blogpost is a manicure I have worn recently! The downside to it is I do not have a "vault" like most bloggers do and can't post ahead that far :(.

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  29. I'm always trying to swatch when I change my polish but I end up doing them the way you do it. It's daunting but I love swatching days and well, I've swatched 40+ in a go before and I was exhausted after!

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  30. Wow. I'm clearly very lazy! But my whole point with starting a blog was to record my actual manicures so what I post does tend to be what I'm actually wearing, or was wearing. Blogging for me is just a bit of fun. I can't imagine swatching 30 polishes in one day. It'd kill me :)

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  31. I really don't "swatch" often at all. If I do, it's for a review of an entire collection. I'm usually wearing what I post or I just took it off. I don't know how you all do it. I'm usually wiped out by about the 3rd polish when trying to swatch. I also feel like I'm disrespecting the polish when I don't actually wear it...at least for a day. LOL! It would be helpful to have a vault of photos though for blogging purposes.

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  32. Oh man... I'm forever behind on swatching. I've actually imposed a "limited buy" on myself so I can swatch and enjoy the polish I have now-- more than enough to fill my blog by all reasonable limits! Basically, I swatch a bunch of polishes (on the weekends) so I have content to put on my blog and then change my polish several times during the week to I can enjoy them full force.  Sometimes if I choose a random polish I haven't swatched yet, I will take photos so I can put it on my blog.

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  33. Holy smokes, Steph! That's a lot of work swatching for so long - you are such a hard worker and as readers, we really appreciate it. Your nails always look stellar!

    I actually can't swatch nail polish bottle after bottle. I just try to photograph my manicure in the day(s) that I'm wearing a colour or design. Kudos to you, though! (That pile of polish in your photo is awesome, by the way!)

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  34. Forty plus polishes swatched? OH MY GOODNESS! That speaks volumes about your commitment and passion. Good for you! :D That's very impressive!

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