Archive | August, 2013

Fabulous Friday 5

30 Aug

Good morning friends! It’s Friday and soooo much stuff has happened this week across the web. I had difficulty narrowing it down, but here you go:

  1. This week’s mish mash challenge was music and there were so many great manis, it was difficult to pick just one to feature but I fell in love with A Girl and Her Chicken Named Betty’s Lenka-inspired mani. I love the attention to detail and the different effects on each nail!
  2. Vegan Claws did a review of this beautiful, super textured polish from Jordana (with a perfect gradient to boot!)
  3. It’s Thug Kitchen‘s 1 year anniversary, and he’s putting together one pimp ass (and entertaining) contest with some sweet prizes (note: Thug Kitchen is apparently not actually vegan, but his recipes are!)
  4. SAY WHATT I’m totes geeky out over this Infamous-inspired nail art from Nailasaurus (whose skills I am most jealous of):
  5. Set in Lacquer has a Zoya giveaway going on!


So it’s labor day weekend here in the US and, courtesy of the 1971 Uniform Monday Holiday Act (history, HOLLA), I have a long weekend. Since my mom is making me work tonight (I’m a graphic designer and she owns a copy shop haha) instead of going to visit my friends in Philly (boo) I’m going camping with my bestie up here in VT! (yay!) Which means I’m not gonna have much time for polishing not to mention I’ll probably ruin all my polish anyway, so I didn’t spend too much time on this week’s weekend mani.

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It’s just a super quick (but imo super cute!) dottiture. And the photo doesn’t really do it justice because the orange dots are actually neon haha. Maybe when I get to work, I’ll do a little photo editing, but I’m home still (yeahhh Friday morning) so it will have to wait. Anyway the colors I use for this were:

Base Color/Purple Dots: Purple from my Color Club collection (no name, sorry)
Accent Nail Base Color/White Dots: OPI Alpine Snow
Orange dots: LA Colors Breezy


Six is for Syria: Ugh, sorry, this is the worst bonus ever. Because everything pretty much sucks in Syria right now. Not only has this conflict been raging for over 2 years, but it’s only getting worse every day. And it’s looking less and less like it’s going to let up :/ Anddd this week the Syrian Government decided to start using chemical weapons. Against their own people.

UGH why does this world suck SO MUCH

I’m not going to depress you with pictures of parents uncontrollably sobbing over their dying children (though there is plenty of that — and the pictures are the saddest you will ever see) but here are some links to help get you caught up on what’s going on over there and why:

NY Times: Blasts in the Night, a Smell, and a Flood of Syrian Victims

Buzzfeed: 9 Reasons That Syria Is (Still) a Hot Mess

Okay, I’m sorry to have busted out the wicked depression on that one. But we can’t pretend it’s not happening because that doesn’t make it go away, no matter how hard we try.

Anywayyyy… I hope everyone has a super happy and (un)productive weekend! Enjoy your Monday off if you have it 🙂


Kimber’s Mish Mash Challenge: Music (Ke$ha-inspired Border Nails)

28 Aug

Okay, so Ke$ha came to Vermont this past weekend and obv, I had to go. (You’re wondering why I love Ke$ha? Oh bb, there are so many reasons). And it was the most amazing, transcendent, life-affirming concert experience of my life. Ke$ha in hot pants? Check. Ke$ha in a sparkly, rainbow leotard? Check. Gay rights activism at a pop show? Check. Sexual objectification of hot, ab-defined men? Check PLUS.  Fire? Glitter? Confetti?? CHECK CHECK AND CHECKMATE. Did I literally dance my ass off? Yes. Would I got again? In a heartbeat. I think I’m in love. Ke$ha says she’s not getting married until any 2 people in the United States regardless of sexuality or gender identification can get married. I’VE BEEN SAYING THE SAME THING FOR YEARS. It’s destiny. Meet Ke$ha, my unofficial finance.

Anywayyyy… this week’s Mish Mash challenge could not have been more ideal! Going to see Ke$ha, I obv had to do Ke$ha-inspired nails for this challenge. (If you haven’t checked out her fabulous nail art, GO GOOGLE RIGHT NOW)

She has so many fantastic nail designs, but unlike Ke$ha, I don’t have a dedicated make up team to put mine together. It’s just little old, 11-hour work days, 6 days a week work days me over here, and —

So I picked one of her simpler designs, border mani. Check out how classy and pretty it is:

God, she’s just so perf, I can’t even — UNNFF

Anyway, here’s my version:


And here’s now to do it!


  • Base polish (that’s the beige above)
  • Black Sharpie marker (you’re all like say what Sharpies on my nails?? but just trust me)
  • Hairspray (now you’re really wondering what’s up haha)
  • Rubbing alcohol and cotton swabs
  • Top and base coats (I use Seche Vite for my top ALWAYS and Smoother Operator for my base)
  • Something sparkly for your accent nail

Step 1: Prime your nails with some base coat. This is not optional.

Step 2: Paint 2-3 coats of your base color. The more polish between your permanent marker border and your nail, the better, IMO.

Step 3: After your base color is super, super dry, take your Sharpie marker and outline your nail. Don’t worry about getting some on your skin (we’ll take care of that in a sec, promise). Depending what you’re doing for an accent nail, you might want to leave the outline off that nail.

Step 4: After your nails are bordered, carefully, gently spray a super thin coat of hairspray over your nails. Let that dry for awhile (this prevents the marker from smearing) before moving onto the next step.

Step 5: After your hairspray is dry, you can use your top coat.

Step 6: Accent nail: So Ke$ha put some bling on hers. I didn’t have that, but I did have some gold polish and the silver hexagon glitter polish from Color Club seen above.

Step 7: Clean up your cuticles (which no doubt are covered in Sharpie) with the rubbing alcohol.

That’s all it took! It was a pretty quick mani, actually, and I really liked it. Loads of compliments at the concert.

The polishes I used were:

  • Base color: OPI Don’t Pretzel My Buttons (from their Germany collection)
  • Accent nail base color: Wet N Wild The Gold and the Beautiful
  • Glitter bling accent color: Silver hexagon glitter polish from Color Club (had no name on it, sorry!)

Make sure to check out what the other amazing girls did for this challenge!

Try It On Tuesday: Beauty Concepts Silver and *BONUS* LA Colors Metallic Pink

28 Aug

Okay, so as you all know, this past Friday was payday for me, aka New Polish Friday. So in my travels I, of course, bought wayyy more nail polish than I intended too. My loot include 2 Orly glitter shades, 5 mini bottles from Incidental Twin on Etsy (see these next week in Nail Mail!) and a 3 pack of metallics from Beauty Concepts.

Now the last one I had never actually heard of before,  but the polish was very affordable, the packaging said animal cruelty free and there weren’t any non-vegan ingredients on the label (Note: some of their other shades may contain a couple of Red Lake dyes which can come from non-vegan sources), so I thought, I’ve blown my nail budget away anyway, what can it hurt?

I’m glad I bought them because, like I said, they were very inexpensive and since there’s a challenge for that coming up, I think they will be useful.

And, of course, I need a new polish per week for TioT anyway!

I decided to try out the silver (there were no names on the packaging) and here’s what it looks like:

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I had some LA Colors Metallic Pink sitting around from a bunch of polishes my sister gave me and my love of French tips demanded satiating, so I continued forth with such.

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Here’s a quick rundown of the pros and cons of the silver Beauty Concepts polish:


  • Super nice pigmentation. What you’re seeing is just one coat
  • Beautiful colors, all three of these colors look great on my nail
  • Super quick and easy removal. No soaking or acetone necessary 🙂


  • The smell is kinda terrible. Not like China Glaze Fast Forward terrible, but like… nearly.
  • The dry time for this is ages long. Forget touching anything for approx. 12 years without some serious Seche Vite action

Overall these are pretty standard, inexpensively, nondescript polishes. I love the metallics and for the price ($1.30 each, give or take) they were well worth it. And the silver looks fab with my metallic pink 🙂


Fabulous Friday 5

23 Aug

Good morning everyone!! Why am I so chipper? Ah yes, because it’s Friday. And I have Friday mornings off! (Don’t be jealous, I work Friday afternoons/evenings and all weekend– actually I don’t have a single day off until Labor Day weekend). PLUS I get paid every other Friday (today is payday!) which means it’s NEW POLISH FRIDAY! If you have any suggestions for cruelty-free, vegan indie polishes, please please please leave them in the comments.

Anyway, In honor of my weekly morning off, and in honor of one of my all time fave blogs, Role/Reboot, I’ve decided to put together my five favorite nail art, nail polish, beauty and/or vegan posts of the week. I’ll try to do this every Friday, but don’t be shocked if you see some fabulous Saturdays or Sundays in the future.

  1. A Polished Prance did this fabulous needle drag marble for her Mish Mash Challenge this week and I can’t get over how beautiful it looks:
  2. LynBDesigns and a bunch of other indie polish makers are hosting a MASSIVE giveaway. Definitely, definitely check it out:
  3. Did you hear that All Lacquered Up has been collaborating with Sally Beauty to produce 6 new Fingerpaints colors?? Well, they’re all available now, and check out how awesome they are:
  4. Role/Reboot: Beauty Is Not An Attitude. Great commentary on the “beauty comes from within” (aka if you’re not pretty, you’re not trying hard enough) motif. From the article:

    “The problem with the “beauty is an attitude” logic is that it places all the blame and responsibility on women…. “Beauty is an attitude” suggests that if we just smile bigger, if we just feel better, if we just learn to be happier and more confident, then we will look better, too. In this system, beauty is still really important. We are implicitly acknowledging that we want to look beautiful, we care deeply about looking beautiful, we should look beautiful. Only now, it’s our fault, psychologically, if we don’t. If we don’t, we aren’t just failing to be attractive, we’re letting ourselves down with our crappy personalities, too.”

  5. My Vegan Cuts Beauty Box shipped this week! I love, love, love Vegan Cuts (it’s like livingsocial except more awesome) and this is the 2nd month of their all-vegan beauty box. I actually won my box this month after I filled out a survey, which is extra fabulous. Both months so far, the boxes have included at least one vegan nail product in addition to the other fabulous cruelty free, vegan beauty products. Here’s what was in my box this week (Yes, I will totes be reviewing those nail wraps sometime soon heck yeah):
    2013-08-23 09.27.09

The last thing I want to include in my “fab Friday” is my weekend mani. I’m actually going to see Ke$ha in concert this weekend (damn straight gurl don’t judge me) so I will be changing this mani tomorrow (you’ll see it for my “Music” edition of Mish Mash on Wednesday). Today I’m wearing Wet N Wild Caribbean Frost for my French tips and I added a single coat of Colorless Skein from LynBDesigns‘ “Baker Street” collection (yes! that’s right Sherlock-inspired nail polish! I love this brand). I have to confess that I love it. It’s like nail art in a bottle! It’s full of these funky shaped glitters (stars, squares, hearts, strips, and hexagons) which look really dynamic over both bare nails and dark polish.

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You thought I was done but…


Six is for Sexism: The wage gap between men and women in America is no secret, and here’s an excellent video of Disney Princesses explaining it to you:

It should be noted, though, that the statistics they site are an average of wages earned by women in the workplace compared to men. But when you add race as a factor the gap becomes even scarier.

Okay, that’s really it! I know I was sneaky with my #6 (you thought this was all about nails and beauty then BOOM! feminism outta nowhere) but I promise it won’t be sexism every week. I look forward to the alliteration possibilities in the future 🙂

Have a fabulous Friday!

Kimber’s Mish Mash Challenge: Nail Art Technique You’ve Never Tried Before (Spun Sugar)

22 Aug

Okay so I’ve been asked by some people (you know who you are) to make a wordpress site in addition to my tumblr one (as if I’m not busy enough!) for those who aren’t super cool tumblr users like myself. So from now on I will be posting my “important” posts over here at as well at I’ll still be having major fun and excitement reblogging things over on tumblr though, so you should probably also check that out.

Anyway on to business!

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So this week’s challenge is… Nail Art Technique You’ve Never Tried Before! And since I’m so new to nail art (and nail polish in general) this one was pretty wide open for me! I had literally dozens of options to chose from but, like always, I was on a bit of a time crunch so I picked this technique called “spun sugar.” I’ve seen this technique a couple of places and I thought it looked really neat (and a lot like it might be useful around Halloween, haha) so I decided to have a go. Here’s how it went down:

Step 1: It’s weird for me not to say base coat, base coat, base coat first and always but actually the first thing to do is pour out a generous amount of polish onto a plastic sheet and then just leave it alone. This is for the “spun sugar” part of the mani. It’s a good idea to stir it once every couple of minutes using a toothpick or dotting tool.

Step 2: Base coat (I used Smooth Operator, my go-to ridge filler)

Step 3: Base color (I kept my cupcake pink from yesterday’s Try It On Tuesday because, like I said, I was pressured for time)

Step 4: (I’m impatient so I applied Seche Vite over my base color and moved right on to paint 4 of my nails with this vibrant multi-colored glitter polish because I knew I didn’t have the time or patience to use the spun sugar technique on all of them) Stir the pool of polish on the plastic sheet and wait until it starts forming little strings. When it’s really stringy (takes about 10 minutes in my experience), put your finger next to the pool of polish and take your toothpick or dotting tool and pull the the strings across your fingernail. Add as many strings as you like or have polish for. Repeat for each nail.

Step 5: Top coat (you don’t have to wait long for the spun sugar to dry, it’s surprisingly quick).
I really liked the finished look of this mani, but it took more time than I would normally dedicate. It also used A LOT of polish. Luckily I had some Sally Girl minis hanging around. I never thought I’d get a chance to use them!

The polishes I used for this were:

  • Base color: Color Club pastel pink
  • Glitter: Wet N Wild Party of Five Glitters
  • Spun Sugar: Sally Girl Spoiled

And check out the other lovely ladies with their challenge manis!

Try It On Tuesday: Cupcake Pink from Color Club

20 Aug

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Sassypaints2012: Try It on Tuesday

I think I will be forever surprised when Tuesday comes sooo quickly! Seems like it sneaks up on me!

Well, that’s right — it’s Try It on Tuesday again! This week I’m trying out some of that awesome new vegan, cruelty-free polish I picked up from TJ Maxx the other day. This one is from Color Club, but it doesn’t have a name on it… I’m going to call it cupcake pink because that’s exactly what it reminds me of.

Here are the Pros/Cons of this polish:


  • The color is lovely. It’s just like pink icing on a cake! Or, if you’re into gender norms, it’s exactly the color of “baby pink” like you would find at a gender reveal party (yes, those exist, I was just at one on Sunday) or a baby shower. The right swatch is taken in the shade and that really shows the true color. The left swatch is under the light in my bedroom and the light kind of washes out the color
  • It’s super high gloss! What you’re looking at is pre top coat. It was difficult to find lighting that didn’t make the polish look white to the lens.


  • The formula is not my fave. It’s kinda thin and paints on a little streaky. I used 3 coats on the images above.

Sucks I don’t have much time this week, but I hope you like this polish because you’ll see it tomorrow for the Mish Mash Challenge, haha.

Questions? Concerns? Comment below or tweet me @thesecretvegan

Try It on Tuesday: Anomalous Bloke (backdated)

13 Aug

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It’s that time again (oh snap, when did it get Tuesday??), and I’ve got some pretty awesome swatches for you. For today’s TioT, I’m wearing LynBDesigns’ Anomalous Bloke from her “The Doctor Is In” collection.

That’s right. DOCTOR WHO NAIL POLISH. (If you think life doesn’t got better than this, she also makes Sherlock nail polish — some of which I purchased and will be using for other TioTs).

This is a very pretty green color and the images really don’t quite do it justice. It’s sort of like money meets Christmas, if that makes sense. It starts with a money-green base but has tiny red and gold glitters which really give it a nice Christmas-tree effect. It also gives a bit of texture, too. Here’s a quick pro-con list of this individual polish:


  • The pigmentation is fabulous. I’m wearing just 2 coats in the pics above.
  • This is long lasting (for me). I wore it 3 days and the only chipping I had was on my right index finger (which I can’t keep polish on to save my life)
  • SPARKLES, BABY. This has the kind of tiny glitter that is really eye catching without being overbearing. My best friend’s mom even complimented me on it last night 🙂
  • Easy to work with formula. There are few things I hate more than polishes that are too thick or too thin. This one was justttt right. I had no trouble evenly distributing the glitter.
  • Unlike a lot of glitter polishes, this was actually easy to remove. I usually do the cotton ball technique of soaking my nails for glitter polishes, but this one I didn’t have to. Polish removal was quick, clean and easy.
  • Best pro of all: It’s alllll vegan, baby. No animals harmed in the making of this polish! Can you be cruelty free with sexy nails? F-yeah


  • Okay, I swear LynBDesigns isn’t paying me to say this but I can’t really think of any cons. The polish is textured because of all the tiny glitters, so I guess if you don’t like that, that could be a con. I do kind of like textured polishes though, so even that I liked. I guess if there’s a con, it’s that Moffat is a misogynist, but that’s hardly LynB’s fault.