All The Bright Polishes

All The Bright Places Cover Inspired Manicure // Novels and Nail PolishIf you are a YA fan and haven’t heard of All the Bright Places yet, I would bet my entire library of young adult fiction (probably valued at some absurdly high amount) that you’re living under a rock! As one of the most highly anticipated books of 2015, it definitely didn’t disappoint. This gem of a novel follows the story of a boy named Finch and a girl named Violet. It’s an incredible journey of self discovery, love and loss, and it’s hard to accurately express the beauty Jennifer Niven was able to craft through written word.

Jennifer tackles some really heavy topics in this novel, but does very well not to romanticize or make light of them. I think this comes from her ability to (unfortunately) relate well to the subject matter and speak very honestly about the topic of suicide and survivors of suicide. On the real, I spent the last 50 pages bawling like a baby with my winged liquid eyeliner running down my splochy face. But I wouldn’t have it any other way! All I can say is thank you Jennifer for creating a book that will stay with me long after I put it down.

Now let’s talk mani!

Tools I Used // Julep Plie Want +
Tools I Used // Julep Plie Wand + Martha + Essie Mojito Madness + Find Me An Oasis + Mint Fancy + OPI Pamplona Purple + Ciate Big Yellow Taxi

I am stoked on life to share this manicure with all of you! It is absolutely one of my favorites (and one of my best, if I do say so myself), and I had the pleasure to show it to Jennifer herself at the Pasadena Loves YA festival last week! I’m inspired by a lot of covers, but there was something so pretty about this one. I didn’t want to paint it, I NEEDED to paint it.

All The Bright Places Cover Inspired Manicure // Novels and Nail PolishI started off with two coats of my fav light blue polish, Essie’s Find Me An Oasis, except on my ring finger, which I used Mint’s grey Fancy. My intention with that (because the colors are so similar) was so that I could use the blue as one of the Post-its on my ring finger. Throw on a quick coat of Seche Vite, and we’re good to start with the details!

All The Bright Places Cover Inspired Manicure // Novels and Nail PolishI think we should start with the squares, or Post-its, from the cover. I took a bit of artistic liberty and cut the 8 squares down to 6, because in reality my nails aren’t THAT long! I grabbed some thin nail tape and worked out the grid. To get the colors just right, I had to add a bit of white to the Ciate polish to tone it down. From there, I used the Julep Plie Wand to fill in each space, and voila! You’ve got yourself some Post-it notes.

All The Bright Places Cover Inspired Manicure // Novels and Nail PolishWhen it came to the violet, I just crossed my fingers and hoped it would come out. And what do you know, it actually looks like the violet on the book! I took the Julep Plie Wand and sketched out the general shape and then filled it in with the purple, black and yellow details. I had fun challenging myself to paint something freehand, a lot like the desk chair from my Attachments mani. It’s with these types of manicures that I find my passion most rewarding!

All The Bright Places Cover Inspired Manicure // Novels and Nail PolishHave you read All the Bright Places? Tell me what you thought! Happy Reading!

{Mani Monday} Lillian Eve

I’m so happy to introduce a great indie nail polish brand to the blog, Lillian Eve. I shared their anniversary giveaway last week, and today I’m going to talk all about their great polishes!

First, I want to judge the bottles by their cover… because they’re so cute! I love the bottle design, as well as their branding as a whole. They’re an adorable company, and I was so happy when they reached out to me to try their polishes. Even better, all of their polishes are 5-free, vegan, cruelty-free and bottled in the great USA. Talk about piece of mind!

Lillian Eve Nail Polish // Novels and Nail Polish

Another thing I really love about Lillian Eve is the selection of colors they offer! They’re so wonderful for every season, and I can’t wait to see the colors they continue to come up with.

Bijoux 

Bijoux Lillian Eve // Novels and Nail Polish

Bijoux has that cornflower blue vibe going on, just like the crayon! It’s definitely on point for summer 2015, because of its fresh, fun look. It took three coats to really get opaque, but it didn’t get overly thick or unmanageable.

Bijoux Lillian Eve // Novels and Nail Polish

Haute Night Out

Haute Night Out Lillian Eve // Novels and Nail Polish

Haute Night Out really satifies my love for a vibrant, fire engine red. It’s a three-coater as well, but has the same great finish. You definitely don’t have to try very hard to get an even finish, which I really appreciate.

Haute Night Out Lillian Eve // Novels and Nail Polish

If you haven’t entered the Lillian Eve Anniversary giveaway yet, check out my original post about it and enter! It’s an incredible prize package AND they’re picking an additional winner from Novels and Nail Polish to receive a polish.

Happy Reading!

{Saturday Spotlight} Bundle Monster Downtown Collection

February is almost gone, and spring will be here in no time. When I received the Downtown Nail Polish Collection from Bundle Monster, I knew I wanted to do one last dark winter mani before pastels and peonies take over! The collection features 6 cream polishes that are spot on for all of your fall/winter polish needs.

Bundle Monster Review // Novels and Nail Polish

From left you right you have Harlow (smokey navy), Eaton (dark teal), Oxford (neutral taupe), Bristol (maroon), Redhill (deep shimmering burgundy) and Crowley (deep purple). All of the polishes applied really well, and most are good to go in just one coat. My favorite color is definitely Redhill. I love the shimmer, and it looks so gorgeous on!

I knew right away I wanted to create a day-to-night multi-mani with these guys.

Bundle Monster Review // Novels and Nail Polish

For day, you can rock these five colors together no problem. Their rich pigmentation allows them to effortlessly transition from each color without looking harsh or out of place.

And while I love simple daytime looks, my favorite is definitely night.

Bundle Monster Review // Novels and Nail Polish

Bundle Monster Review // Novels and Nail Polish

A night on the town deserves a fun, sexy manicure to go along with it. I used striping tape to create a diagonal French tip with a bit of sparkle underneath. I wish the colors had a bit more contrast between the different shades, but other than that, I love the final result!

Bundle Monster Review // Novels and Nail Polish

Overall, I would say that if you don’t already own these colors, grab them! They’re easy to work with and not too expensive. Happy Reading!

 Facebook // Twitter // Instagram // Pinterest // shop the collection

**These polishes were provided to me in exchange for my honest review

Pretty, Pretty Polish {Mint Polish Review & Swatches}

Mint Polish Bottles

There are a lot of awesome nail polish brands out there – some big and some small, but no matter the size, equally as awesome. Mint is an LA-based company with beautiful bottles and smart shades that apply as easily as they look on the eyes. As  a self-proclaimed lover of pretty things that function as decor in addition to their original use (case and point – Louboutin’s nail polish), I fell head-over-heels the first time I found this brand and their perfume-inspired bottles on Instagram. It only got better when I learned their polishes are 5-Free and brewed & bottled in sunny Southern California!

Mint Polish

Now that we’ve seen the beauty of the bottle, let’s get down to the nitty gritty. The formula and brush are honestly equally as wonderful as the bottle’s design. I love the long brush and “stem,” if you will, because it allows for fantastic control while painting. The colors look great with one coat if you’re in a rush out the door, and the second coat leveled beautifully for fully opaque coverage.

Moonlit Stroll

Mint Polish - Moonlit Stroll

Out of Mint’s new collection, this color was the one I HAD to have. It came out just after Pantone announced Marsala as their 2015 Color of the Year, and the second I saw Moonlit Stroll, I knew that was the perfect way to wear that trend. It’s definitely not your mother’s mauve, with a wonderful gold shimmer built into the rich pearlescent shade. It applied opaque in two coats, and looks like a dream!

Mint Polish - Moonlit Stroll Mint Polish - Moonlit Stroll

Fancy

Mint Polish - Fancy

What came first, the polish or the name? Because they reflect each other to perfection! Talk about a barely-there grey cream that is the essence of classy. It’s hard to find good grey polishes, and there’s no doubt in my mind that Fancy will be the bottle I grab next time I’m looking to freshen up an elegant look!

Mint Polish - Fancy Mint Polish - Fancy

Ice Cube

Mint Polish - Ice Cube

Ok, let’s talk mint nail polishes. Some people think they’re overdone, but I adore ’em! I featured Mint’s namesake, Original Mint, in my gift guide this past holiday season, and Ice Cube is the perfect subdued version of that! It’s soft, feminine and classic, yet filled with personality!

Mint Polish Ice Cube

Slumber Party

Mint Polish - Slumber Party

I think the description on Mint’s website says it all – Girls just wanna have fun, and wear Barbie Pink on their toes! It’s totally the truth! If you’re looking for fun and flashy, Slumber Party is everything. Rich and opaque in one coat, brightening up a look for spring or summer has never been this easy!

Mint Polish - Slumber Party Mint Polish - Slumber Party

Have you tried Mint before? If not, and you’re looking to support a wonderful LA company, try their polishes out! Happy Reading!

Zoya Beauties {Haul + Swatches}

Buying and trying a new brand of nail polish is a bit like Christmas morning for me. You open this package and aren’t exactly sure what you’re going to get, but you hope it’s going to be good! Well, Santa was good to me today!

Zoya Noir + Taylor + Odette
Zoya Noir + Taylor + Odette

I grabbed these three gorgeous colors during Zoya‘s 3 for 15 sale a couple weekends ago. I was really overwhelmed with all of the polish shades they have, so choosing only 3 definitely took a lot of self-control. Obviously I had to get the polish named after me, Taylor, a creamy fair nude from the Naturel Collection. It’s completely opaque in 1-2 coats, and its rosy undertones look really nice with my skin tone!

Zoya Taylor Nail Polish Swatch

 

Zoya’s Pixie Dust polishes are unique to their brand, which is what brought me to choosing Noir. I was incredibly impressed with this glitter polish (until it was time to take off!). Noir is a deep, vampy opaque glitter plum, and while photographs don’t truly do the polish justice, its absolutely gorgeous.

Zoya Noir Nail Polish Swatch

 

But like any glitter nail polish, it’s a pain to take off. I had to soak my nails in acetone, which I hate doing because it dries out my cuticles and nails. I’ll have to reserve this beauty for special occasions, when I plan to leave it on for a longer period of time!

Zoya Noir Nail Polish Swatch

The third polish I chose was Odette, another member of the Naturel Collection. This sultry orchid maroon cream is vibrant and natural in one, and I’m completely obsessed. It’s flirty and feminine without being over the top, perfect for a classic manicure.

Zoya Odette Nail Polish Swatch

 

After this purchase, I’m in love with Zoya polishes, especially these three. Their application is flawless and fully opaque. It’s nice to have polishes that are a bit thinner sometimes, because the polish spreads across the nail so much easier.

Zoya Odette Nail Polish Swatch

 

Do you have a favorite Zoya polish? I’m always looking for new colors to buy, so let me know! Happy reading!

 

Nail Salad

Let’s have Taylor story time for a little bit. Once upon a time…

Oh, screw it. I don’t like vegetables or really anything green. Peas, yuck. Broccoli, hell nah. Spinach, kill me. KALE? Wouldn’t touch it with a 10-foot pole. So when I saw an article about the brand new Nails Inc. NailKale line of nail polish, I thought the kale fad had gone wayyyy too far. Off the deep end kind of far! But, I’ve come around, and now LOVE it. The bottle’s design is both gorgeous and unique, with its indented base that acts as a “tester,” reflecting the color onto your nails. The polishes claim to take the vitamin-rich qualities of kale and use them to stimulate advanced keratin production. The line of NailKale features 9 colors, an illuminator and a superfood base coat.

Nails Inc NailKale Swatch

Bruton Mews is a warm forest green that dries completely opaque in two coats. It has a wonderfully shiny finish, and held up rather well throughout the work week (although it stained my cuticles a tad)! I purchased the green for two reasons: because I liked it and because it reminds me of KALE! And if I’m going to wear kale-infused nail polish, might as well go all out! As for the nail health benefits, I can’t say I noticed a huge difference in the one week I was wearing it. Maybe I need the superfood base coat to really see a difference, or maybe it really isn’t any different than regular polish. Either way, still loving it!

NailKale Manicure

Have you tried NailKale? Notice any superfood qualities about it, or just love the colors? Happy Reading!

Shatter Me… But Not My Nail Polish

20140618-153215-55935255.jpgIt’s hard to be a YA Fiction book blogger/lover without hearing rave reviews of the Shatter Me series by Tahereh Mafi. Not only is Mafi half of an incredible powerhouse writing couple (married to Ransom Riggs), but she holds her own as an author in a world filled with dystopian novels. I wasn’t completely sure what to expect when I ordered the book, but I was excited to get reading nonetheless. And let me tell you, Shatter Me did not disappoint! I was glued to the pages right away, and the twists started early and kept coming. I love when I find a book that takes a fresh twist on a genre I read so much of. From the writing style and attention to detail to the character development, I felt very invested in the novel, which I attribute to Mafi’s talent.

One thing I didn’t realize about the series is that it has much more romance than say, The Hunger Games. I’m not usually one to get super excited about a romance novel, but the plot itself was able to hold its own enough for me to feel like the love aspect added to the overall book.

I am so interested to see Warner’s character develop through the rest of the book. His flashes from good to evil have my interest piqued, and I am so looking forward to more of him in Unravel Me.

Now, let’s get down to the fun stuff – Shatter Me inspired nail art!

Tools I Used
Tools I used // Julep Polishes + Plie Wand & striping brush + makeup sponge

I had such a blast finding inspiration in the cover art of Shatter Me. This is actually a redesigned cover, the original showing a woman in a white flowing dress. Personally, I prefer covers that feature colors, art and drawings, as opposed to photos of actual people. It automatically gives you an image of the main character that might not have been what you imagined from the author’s description. I tend to think that takes out half the fun of reading, which to me is creating those characters and worlds the author has created with their beautifully crafted narration.

The cover’s colors really caught my eye, and I knew I wanted to try a fun technique I’d never used before. I grabbed a couple colors that matched the cover (navy, bright blue and creamy, pinky white) and a latex makeup sponge. I dabbed onto the sponge the three colors in a similar pattern to that of the book and sponged it in a rocking motion across my nails.

*Quick tip! I put petroleum jelly on my cuticles so I wouldn’t have to worry about the nail polish getting sloppy! Once I finished painting, I wiped the extra nail polish and jelly right off.

The first coat of nail polish wasn’t as vibrant as I had hope or pictured in my mind, so I let it dry a bit before trying a second coat. I loved how it turned out after the second time around because it blended as well as punched up the colors.

Shatter Me inspired nail artWhen it came to my ring finger, I knew I couldn’t paint the actual eye featured on the book’s cover. While I have honed my nail painting skills, I am not an artist! The eye would have come out looking like a cartoon, and I wasn’t about to ruin this beautiful tie-dye gradient! I took inspiration from the curved shape of the eye, and painted a half moon at the base of the nail. From there, I used my Plie Wand and striping brush to paint the eyelashes/trees. I wanted to get them thin enough to give the look of wild, untamed tree branches.

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Once the polish dried, I painted a top coat to smooth the gradient, and voila!

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Have you read Shatter Me yet? Let me know what you thought of it! Happy Reading!