Archive | March, 2014

Fabulous Friday Five

28 Mar

So I woke up this morning to find a fresh layer of snow across my town. It’s almost April and the weather forecast promised me warm weather today…

I’m sure spring is coming… some day….

Anyway, let’s get started on our Friday 5:

  1. I’ve been dying to share this with you guys. Over the Top Coat did an amazing mani featuring everyone’s favorite snowman! She made this (and a few other!) manis using Shirley Ann Nail Lacquer ‘s amazing new Storms of Arendelle Collection. I contacted Shirley Anne Nail Lacquer because, omg, yes, gimme! but is it vegan…? And the verdict is… yes! Cruelty-free and vegan friendly!!! Waiting until my next paycheck to go on a buying spree is gonna be crazy tough.
  2. It’s no secret that I’m anti-Moffat in all forms (especially Doctor Who) so you won’t be surprised when I share this blog post with you: Steven Moffat – A Case For The Prosecution by Jack Graham
  3. I know I mentioned AlloftheVeganFood.tumblr.com last week, but look at this amazing Ethiopian Food post they put together at my request!
    Screen Shot 2014-03-28 at 2.08.30 PM
  4. My favorite within-driving-distance-without-planning-a-day-trip place to get nail polish is, hands down, TJ Maxx. You might infer from that statement that I live in a pretty small, not exciting town. Which is true — but TJ Maxx is actually a town over from mine, I don’t have any big stores near me (unless you count Rite Aid…), which is just fine because I don’t like to support corporations when I can suppose local business owners. That being said, no where sells nail polish near me except TJ Maxx (my Rite Aid’s collection of vegan-friendly polishes is so meager it’s a sham), so I’m always happy to see others benefiting from the joy of TJ Maxx’s polish bounty! Small Budget Beauty just got a great haul from TJ Maxx, Big Lots (which I also have near me and have snagged a couple of Sephora polishes at) and Ross (which I do not have near me 😦 or even I think in my state…). It’s inspiration to get some fabulous inexpensive polish after I get paid!
  5. One of the things that drives me crazy about the birth control access debate (other than the fact that such a topic is even being debated) is the focus on this crazy idea that “I shouldn’t have to pay for some woman to have all the sex she wants!” (which is such a cissist and slut-shaming argument to begin with that it’s fucking disgusting) because guess what else hormonal birth control is used for? HEALTH. (oh yeah and let’s stop pretending like people with uteri are using HBC to “avoid the consequences of sex” because oh yeah, there are fuckton of sex consequences beyond pregnancy, or have we recently eliminated all STDs???) Our Bodies, Our Blog just did a fabulous post about how contraception is a health issue for everyone, not just for women with an argument I hadn’t heard before — pregnancy planning for optimal mother-and-child health.
    From the article:
    “When a pregnancy is planned, women can start prenatal care, including increasing their intake of folic acid; work with their healthcare providers to address relevant medical conditions, as well as substance abuse; and take other steps that lead to healthier outcomes for both the mother and the infant. Pregnancies that are unplanned are more likely to be affected by delayed prenatal care, maternal depression, low birth weight, poorer childhood physical and mental health, and other complications. Breastfeeding rates are also lower after unintended pregnancies.”
    It’s a pretty interesting argument and definitely worth the read!

*BONUS*

6. The frustrations of being non-white in Hollywood:

I haven’t been doing much with my nails lately due to heavy work load and heavy snow fall —

What my mornings are like

but last night I did manage to muster up some ambition and I put together this manicure based on my friend’s art suggestion:

2014-03-27 23.15.29 copy

My friend’s original instructions for this mani was to use a bunch of different purples and make perpendicular black lines. I did actually make a manicure following those exact instructions, but I didn’t like it enough to justifying taking pics. Plus I wanted to do something a little more spring-feeling in hopes of inspiring my local weather forecast to improve… sadly no luck thusfar, but we”ll see!

For this mani, I used all Wet N Wild polishes. The base coat for all but my accent nail is I Need a Refresh Mint, the base coat on my accent nail is Candy-licious and the purple is On A Trip, all from their Mega Last collection and purchased for me by my mother for my birthday.

Alright, I gotta get some work done so I’m out — but I’ll try a new polish for you all on Monday! Have a great (snow-free) weekend!

 

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Try It on T’Monday – LynBDesigns Eloquent Dust & Purple Polish of Sex

24 Mar

Hey friends, the mish mash is done for the season, all my friends have left (they come back at the end of April!) and I’m living alone again, doing nothing but working and painting my nails which means — I’ve got time to participate in Sassypaints’ Try It On Tuesday again! But since I work Tuesdays from 9am to 7pm, I’ll be posting on Mondays because I have the afternoon off.

Disclaimer: Both polishes bartered for graphic design services. All opinions are my own.

2014-03-23 22.59.22

So the polishes I used for this mani were Eloquent Dust and Purple Shirt of Sex, both from LynBDesigns’ Baker Street collection. I’ve been wanting these polishes for foreverrrr but I couldn’t justify making a massive polish purchase (because I can never pick just one). Lucky me that I happen to be a graphic designer haha. So let me tell you about the polishes:

  • Eloquent Dust – Based on this scene from BBC’s Sherlock:
     
    (in case you need a close up of that motion he’s making… lol)

    This is basically the perfect grey polish! I always have trouble finding a nice, light grey color. Every grey polish I own is wayyy too dark or tan/greenish, ick. This is a nice 20% black color that reminds me of those beautiful cool grey Prismacolor markers… ah yes, graphic designer wet dream. This polish has a nice consistency and dries glossy and smooth. Easy to apply evenly. Expect to see it a lot in the future!
  • Purple Polish of Sex: Based on this shirt from BBC’s Sherlock:

    AKA the time Benedict didn’t button his collar while filming haha. So this polish I didn’t really “try” just used quickly as an accent with some striping tape on my ring finger. From my brief experience with this polish, I can tell you it was very sheer and I should probably have used another coat to produce a stronger color. That being said, I think it will make a nice base coat for a future mani.

Overall, I really liked both of these polishes, especially Eloquent Dust, which is no great surprise since I’ve been eyeing them for ages. As you all probably know by now, I was a HUGE fan of BBC’s Sherlock until I recently got fed up with Moffat and BBC’s general disrespect toward their fanbase. That doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate the brilliance of fandom-based polishes, though! In fact, I think LynBDesigns has catered to fans better than BBC ever has. Nothing better than nail polish + fandoms imo 🙂

Super Saturday Six

22 Mar

Happy Spring! A few days into spring here in Vermont and we’ve gotten approx. 8 inches of snow already. Woohoo, lucky me, right? I hope you all are having better weather. And that, eventually, spring really does come.

Anyway, let’s get started on our Super Six!

  1. There are soooo many animal ingredients hidden in cosmetics and beauty products, it makes my head spin. Luckily, VegansofIG just put together a comprehensive list of ingredients to watch out for! There’s also this great resource from Vegan Wolf with a list of basically every animal ingredient out there.
  2. I need to share with you the best vegan food blog of all time! AlloftheVeganFood is my new favorite tumblr. This blogger is amazing — they put together lists and “round ups” based on requests and reply to like every request they get! I wouldn’t have the time or the patience.
  3. Lacquer or Leave Her did an amazing mani and review of MoYou London’s Artist Collection 07. I can’t get over the mani — so cute.
  4. Hooray for anti-rape campaigns that focus on aggressors instead of victims! The Scottish Police recently created a sexual assault prevention campaign that not only avoids victim blaming but also isn’t heterosexist/ignorant of male rape victims. So much love.
  5. Have you heard about Philly Loves Lacquer? They’re a great vegan, cruelty-free polish indie based in my second favorite city in the States! Kat Stays Polished is having a fabulous giveaway featuring Philly Loves Lacquer’s Shopping Madness Trio (which I almost bought the other day haha)
  6. After the horror all my nails breaking two weeks ago, they are starting to recover! To celebrate, I tried out a recent acquisition, LynBDesigns’ Time and Relative Dimension in Space (TARDIS).
    2014-03-21 23.04.05 copy 2014-03-21 23.03.28 copy
    This is one of 14 (yeah 14!) polishes I received from LynBDesigns for some design work I did. I love this color (even though I don’t support Doctor Who anymore, I can’t say no to a color like this!), and I love the glossy finish it has. I didn’t use a topcoat for this (primarily because I was late for work haha) but it’s not one of those rough-feeling glitter polishes, so I didn’t need to worry about it. I’ve got plenty more polishes from LynBDesigns to try out (though I plan to send a couple to a fellow blogger for an Easter gift), so you can expect to see a lot of this kind of polish in the future.

So that’s our Saturday six — sorry it was late, but you know how I am. It’s also a work weekend for me, and I’ve been crazy busy. My friend who was visiting last week is gone now, so I’ll probably be posting a couple of times this coming week. I also just ordered something very special and exciting but I’m keeping it a secret until I have it in my hands to share with you! Have a happy, safe and hopefully warm weekend!

Fabulous Friday Five — Super fast edition!

14 Mar

Alright guys, I’ve got a friend visiting so I’m gonna make this fast —

  1. Samantha Bee and the Daily Show talk about penis pumps (covered by Medicare) and oral contraceptives (covered by the ACA but under constant debate)
  2. KB Shimmer’s new spring 2014 collection launches today! Lacquer is the Best Medicine swatched them all on her blog, so take a look!
  3. Check out this super cute mani from Pink & Polished using all cruelty-free colors from Color Club! Sounds like it was easy to do — maybe I’ll try something similar soon 🙂
  4. Nail Addicted Sisters is doing a fabulous giveaway for China Glaze’s Sea Goddess collection!
  5. I love the vegans of Buzzfeed! Not only are they on point and hilarious, they are catering to my vegan cheese obsession this week and I love it.

So that’s our fabulous Friday five for this week! So as I mentioned last week, my nails are a wreck, and this week was even worse because I had yet another nail break! So instead of painting my own nails, I painted my (male) friend’s nails!

2014-03-14 17.54.19

This polish is another of my faves — China Glaze Flying Dragon. I love that this polish has a matte finish and it has unexpected sparkles hidden in it when it dries. Thanks to my friend for modelling it for me! haha.

Thanks for reading everyone, have a safe and warm weekend!

Spectacular Sunday Six

9 Mar

Alright, I’m late posting the Fab Friday 5 due to a) laziness b) anger because 2 of my nails broke this week and c) super crazy busy at work and life. But I’m going to make it up by posting not a Fabulous Five but a Spectacular Six!

  1. This just in– SquareHue (the monthly nail polish subscription service) is VEGAN! I asked them about this agessss ago, but received no response. Finally, I decided to ask them in a public forum (we vegans will not be ignored!) and happily received this tweet response:
    Screen Shot 2014-03-09 at 12.45.50 PM
  2. This bill, H.R. 4148, introduced by Congressman Jim Moran (D-VA) could end animal testing for cosmetics! Contact your congressperson today and urge them to support this important bill.
  3. Here’s a type of nail art I would never have thought of — eyeliner nail art! Check out the tutorial on Nail It!
  4. Check out this super cute (but a little seasonally early) mani from my favorite blog, U Don’t Need a Man, U Need a Manicure
  5. Here’s a big step forward for legal rights for women (and people with uteruses and actually just everyone): the Canadian Supreme Court has ruled that poking holes in condoms and otherwise tampering with birth control is sexual assault. From the article:

    ‘The Supreme Court agreed with the trial judge and the appeal court that while the woman consented to the “sexual activity in question,” her request for a condom was an “essential feature” of that consent.
    “When a woman agrees to have sexual intercourse with a condom, she is consenting to a particular sexual activity; it is a different sexual activity than sexual intercourse without a condom,” the judges wrote in their unanimous decision Friday. “The deliberate and undisclosed thwarting of her agreement as to how the intercourse is to take place turns the sexual activity into a non-consensual act, regardless of its consequences.”‘

  6. Anddd here’s a step back for legal rights for women: Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that upskirt photos not illegal under state law. From the decision:

    ‘”We conclude that (the law), as written, as the defendant suggests, is concerned with proscribing Peeping Tom voyeurism of people who are completely or partially undressed and, in particular, such voyeurism enhanced by electronic devices. (The law) does not apply to photographing (or videotaping or electronically surveilling) persons who are fully clothed and, in particular, does not reach the type of upskirting that the defendant is charged with attempting to accomplish on the MBTA,”‘

—-

So as I mentioned, I had a pretty frustrating week of nail breaks, so I don’t have pretty enough nails to do a weekend manicure. I do however have a pic from a mani I did awhile ago and saved for just such an occasion:

2014-01-17 17.43.35

For this mani I used China Glaze Hang Ten Toes for a base color and a fine point Sharpie marker to make a couple of quick flower shapes. I love this China Glaze color because it dries matte and I don’t have many polishes that do that. I took this picture before I put on my top coat so you could see the matte effect. My top coat (Ellagee Glass) obviously made this mani shiny.

So that’s it for today — if my nails improve, I will try to post something next week before the Friday Five. I’m also game to write a blog post that doesn’t involve me showing off my ugly nails — anyone have a topic they’d like covered? I could do nail care, veganism, feminism… it’s all good for me. Suggest in the topics or tweet me @thesecretvegan (or if you want to be anonymous — email me at thesecretvegan@gmail.com).

Have a great week everyone!