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The Holographic Excitation

Published December 22, 2014 by withnailsandi

Hi everyone.
With the festive season fast approaching I am drawn to everything sparkly. These 2 beauties arrived on my doorstep today and I needed to share them with you ASAP.

On the left is Sexy and I Snow It by Different Dimension (a US based indie seller) and it is from their recent winter 2014 collection. This polish is a beautiful pale gold holographic, perfect for New Year. It has a perfect formula, has full coverage on 2 coats and is absolutely stunning! It does dry slightly gritty so you’ll need a top coat if you prefer a very smooth finish.
The holographic in this polish is so bright, it even sparkles under low lighting. Below are swatches both with and without flash.


The second polish is from Fun Lacquer an indie company based in Singapore. It is called Royal Chapel and it comes in 2 variations- glitter or holographic. This one is the holographic. It is a gorgeous pinky bronze colour with a ton of holographic shimmer in it. It isn’t quite as chunky as the first polish and so doesn’t have as gritty a texture when dry, you’ll still need a topcoat though. This one is also slightly more sheer, especially on the first coat. It is 95% opaque with 2 coats which is good enough for me, but if you like total opacity you may want 3 coats.
Below are shots with and without flash to really show the holographic effect. For reference, all swatches are 2 coats.


I got both of these polishes from Rainbow Connection which is a UK based indie polish distributor. I have bought loads from this site and I would highly recommend them.


Santa Claws – OPI

Published December 20, 2014 by withnailsandi

My favourite festive polishes from my favourite brand – OPI.



Top Left – Coca Cola Red, Top Right – All I Want for Christmas is OPI, Bottom Right – Snow Globetrotter, Bottom Left – Gettin Miss Piggy With it


Top Left – Every Month is Oktoberfest, Top Right – Cute Little Vixen, Bottom Right – Goldeneye, Bottom Left – All Sparkly and Gold

I’m going to start with bottle shots but scroll down to see swatches where I have combined colours.

Coca-Cola Red is a bright cherry red creme that has an amazing formula. It is almost a one coat although there was still a very slight visible nail line. This looks great on its own, but provides a vibrant base for festive glitters.

All I Want for Christmas is OPI may have made my shortlist because of its name, but there is no denying that this is a beautiful dark red creme. I love dark colours in the winter and so I like to pair them with glitter around Christmas to add a bit of sparkle.

The bottom 2 polishes here are definitely toppers. You’d have a hard job getting these opaque. Both are very sparkly and add that extra something to your manicure. Snow Globetrotter has a mix of iridescent and matte white glitters that make it look like snow on your nails. Gettin’ Miss Piggy With It has mainly red micro-glitter but also has some larger silver hex glitters in there too.

Every Month is Oktoberfest is my favourite polish of all time. Ever. It has a gorgeous purple base with a ton of red shimmer in it. You need 2 coats to get it to full opacity but it is a real chameleon of a polish, looking different in different lights. Snow Globetrotter looks great layered over this polish.

Cute Little Vixen was a surprise favourite. It is a magenta based red with a beautiful gold shimmer running through it. It has an amazing formula too.

All Sparkly and Gold is an opaque gold micro-glitter. 2 thick or 3 thin coats needed for full opacity, but it is stunning.

Goldeneye was a huge lemming of mine and it is gorgeous. A very yellowy-bronze gold that is full of glass fleck gold pieces. It is sheer though and if you want full opacity   be prepared for at least 3, if not 4 coats.


Left – Christmas Gone Plaid, Right – Fresh Frog of Bel-Air

Christmas Gone Plaid is a dark bottle green creme. It is from the new 2014 Gwen Stefani Holiday collection and is something that OPI doesn’t do often. In low lighting this one can look black but the formula is amazing. It’s almost a one-coater but needs that second just to even it out.

Fresh Frog of Bel Air looks great layered over Christmas Gone Plaid. From the same Muppets collection as Gettin’ Miss Piggy with It, it has exactly the same composition of micro-glitter and larger silver hex glitters, this one is just green instead of red. Again this one would be hard to get opaque on its own and is best layered over other polishes.

Below are some swatches of the polishes. Apologies for my dry hands/cuticles and rubbish paint job. I usually swatch on my left hand, as I’m really bad at painting my right, but I’ve broken 2 nails and they look awful. IMG_5577-0.JPG



My collection of OPI is definitely the most extensive, but I have some other very pretty polishes that would perfect for Christmas from other brands. Next week I hope to do a post with my top 2 or 3 Christmas polishes from each of the main brands in my collection.

Hope you found this post useful. I’m still deciding which polish or combo I will wear on the big day so if you have any suggestions or recommendations I would love to hear them.

Hope you are all having a fun-filled build up to Christmas!


One Hell of a Difficult Year

Published December 20, 2014 by withnailsandi

I began this blog just under a year ago as a hobby and a way to share my thoughts and opinions on nail polish and random other things too. My collection and interests have grown over that time but I haven’t spent enough time here at all. This is due to a number of reasons that are work and toddler related, but mainly the (fairly) sudden death of my mum this year. It has really taken all motivation for anything out of me. So, with a new year and a new start looming I want to try again. This time it WILL be more consistent.

I have a few ideas for posts including one I hope to do in the next day or so on favourite Christmas polishes which I hope you’ll enjoy.

Long time no blog

Published August 13, 2014 by withnailsandi

So it’s been a long time since I last updated my blog and my polish collection has grown considerably. I have a bit of a problem. I have taken the odd photo of manicures I’ve done recently so this post is going to just be a bit of a mish-mash of brands!

First up, my most recent new love. Lime Crime polishes. As far as I know there are only 7 cream shades available and I recently bought 2 from harlowandco a site I really recommend if you like international indie brands. I LOVE them so much. They are bright and creamy and almost completely opaque on the first coat as soon as I’d finished this manicure I went back online and ordered the remaining 5 shades.
The colours you see here are Pastelchio (a neon lime green almost yellow, very similar to Life Gave me Lemons from the OPI Neon Collection this summer, but with a better formula) and Lavendairy (a bright pastel purple that is opaque in one coat) and Zoya’s Cosmo (a beautiful silver holographic texture polish)


The packaging is gorgeous too! Definitely my must have polishes for this year.

Sticking with the neon-y summer theme another indie I picked up was a glitter topcoat from Polish Me Silly (formerly Lush Lacquer) called Freckles. Worn over light colours it really pops and is slightly more subtle than a full on neon polish (which comes next)

Here it is worn over OPI My Vampire is Buff.


My last lot of neons is a skittles manicure of most of the brightest shades in my collection.

Little finger: Life Gave me Lemons by OPI
Ring finger: Pink 871 by Sinful Colors
Middle finger: Flip Flop Fantasy by China Glaze
Index finger: Dream On by Sinful Colors
Thumb: Mint Magic by POP Beauty

Another polish brand I’ve fallen head over heels in love with is Picture Polish, which is an Australian brand that has the most gorgeous glitters. I don’t have that many of these yet as they are pricey, especially in the UK, but each one I have I absolutely adore. Here are 2 from my small collection:

Firstly is Douceur a light cream base with a ton of pink metallic glitter and tiny holographic glitter. I love this one and it is fully opaque in 2 coats.

Next is Ultra Violence which has a bright purple jelly base and loads of small purple and magenta glitter. It is opaque after 2 coats because of the glitter and as it’s a jelly it has a wonderful depth. I wore this for 4 days with HK Girl topcoat and had no chips at all, just a tiny bit of tip wear. (Apologies for the shoddy clean up job in this one, I did it in a hurry)


Right, I’m going to stop there as I could just go on all day. If there are any brands you’d like to hear about please let me know. I’ve recently bought Hare Polish, Deborah Lippmann, Cadillacquer, Girly Bits, Dollish Polish, Crows Toes, Fun Lacquer, Mod Lacquer, as well as a fair few Butter London, Essie, Zoya and tons of OPI. Like I said at the start…I have a bit of an addiction!

Neutral Territory

Published February 7, 2014 by withnailsandi

I have been sorting my swatches today and have finally grouped all my neutrals together, so I thought they would make for a good blog post.
I seem to be wearing neutrals a lot at the moment. I don’t know whether it’s the weather, the fact I’m feeling a little stressed at work or something else, but I seem to be reaching for these more than my other brighter polishes.


Rather than talk about all of them I have picked out my 5 current favourites.

OPI Don’t Pretzel My Buttons (left) and OPI Berlin There Done That (right)

Don’t Pretzel My Buttons from OPIs Germany collection is a nude cream shade that has a slight yellow tone. It is a great shade to give the mannequin hand look. I love wearing this to work and it looks great with a matte topcoat.
Berlin There Done That (also from the Germany Collection) is a grey beige shade. It is opaque in two coats but one coat creates a nice work friendly colour as it mutes it slightly.

Dusky Mauve by Barry M

This is a really talked about shade and so I won’t go on too much. I love the depth of this chocolate colored brown with a gorgeous purple shimmer that appears in bright light. This colour reminds me of Cadburys. An added bonus is that it is an exact dupe for Chanel’s Paradoxal. The only down side was that I found it chipped quite easily.

Master Plan by Essie

I’m not a huge Essie fan and only own the 2 Essie shades you see in the top photo but there is something about Master Plan that I love. It is similar to Berlin There Done That but without the beige undertones. Perfect for winter and a great neutral for work. It’s opaque in two coats and lasts really well.

Finally something a bit different…

Cherubic by Color Club

A holographic neutral from Colour Club’s Halo-hues collection. I love this shade. I have MissHollyBerries on Youtube to thank for me buying this. On the nail I would say it is like Don’t Pretzel My Buttons but with a dense holographic shimmer running through it. In bright lights it really pops and the neutral pretty much disappears, but inside it looks just like a beige with a delicate shimmer. This one will be amazing for summer and I think I will be buying more of the Halo-hues collection.

If there are any polishes above that you would like to know more about, please comment and let me know and I’ll be sure to do a blog on them soon.

L x

All That Glitters

Published January 11, 2014 by withnailsandi

Hi Nailfans,

Fairy Lights and Gold Dust

I got these two little sparklers from Superdrug just before Christmas and thought I would review them before they were taken off the shelves. Now for those of you who aren’t so familiar with Barry M, they often do some great special offers and these Limited Editions were one (well two) of them. They were each free if you spent £6 or over on Barry M products, and as I have been creating my nail polish collection recently I easily spent enough to get both.

So on to the polishes…

FYI both of the swatches are 2 coats.

Firstly we have my favourite of the two – FAIRY LIGHTS

Top - Gold Dust Bottom - Fairy Lights (2 Coats)

Top – Gold Dust
Bottom – Fairy Lights
(2 Coats)

This is a beautiful sparkly polish that is a clear base with mainly a fine soft pink glitter along with silver and holographic in there too. The formula is easy to apply and gives a good coverage in two coats. I personally would layer this over a base colour as I like a completely opaque nail, but you could easily wear this on its own. Another thing that I love about this polish is that it can be worn in any season. As it is such a soft colour I think it would look fantastic over pastel cream shades in the summer or over darker colours in the winter.

Fairy Lights

Fairy Lights

Secondly we have GOLD DUST

Left - Gold Dust,  Right -Fairy Lights

Left – Gold Dust,
Right -Fairy Lights

Now this one I wasn’t too sure about and if it hadn’t been free I wouldn’t have paid for it. It is a strand glitter that is a mix of yellow gold and rose gold in a clear base. The mix of colours is nice as it gives it more depth, but as with many larger glitters it is a bit of a pain to apply and I found that it was very difficult to get consistent coverage. A dabbing technique seemed to work best and with two coats did eventually cover well although I am not a fan of the ‘hairy’ look. I will probably save this one for use around Christmas, maybe layered over a similar shade of gold to give it a little extra sparkle without the glitter being too visible.

Gold Dust

Gold Dust

On a final (and obvious) note, you will need a topcoat with both of these, as you would with all glitters. Speaking of topcoats, I am on the hunt for a new one as my Rimmel Finishing Touch has gone all gloopy, so if you have any recommendations please let me know.

Bye for now.

L x

COMING UP on With Nails and I…

More Barry M reviews PLUS I have just started my love affair with OPI so I will be reviewing some of those soon. Stay tuned!

My Barry M Collection

Published December 31, 2013 by withnailsandi

My Barry M Collection

Hey Nail fans

As a ‘Nail Newbie’ I have begun my nail polish collection at the more bargainous end of the market with Barry M, but I have to say I really do love them – for the most part anyway!

These are about half of the Barry M polishes I have amassed up to now and I think good old Navy (292) has to be my absolute favourite so far. It is so versatile. The colour is deep and rich with a fantastic, yet subtle, shimmer. Even better is that it goes on with no more than 2 thin coats to make it fully opaque, which is great for a busy mum like me who invariably has a toddler to deal with 5 minutes after applying my polish.


I will begin by blogging about the various Barry M polishes I own first as that is the brand I have the most experience of. I am waiting for a swatch fan to arrive from Ebay, so once I have that all painted then I will be able to show you more of what the polishes look like on the nail