Nail varnish testers

I have very recently started to love doing nail varnish tests on fake nails to see how they will look before I attempt to paint my nails.

I am finally over the stage of wanting to wear fake nails so I have all these fake nails that I am not going to use. What better way to test out new polish designs than on things that I would otherwise throw away.

I know they don’t look as pretty as they would do on my nails but I can keep them as reference.

I will say sponging like for the gradient is far easier than doing it on your nails but there is less mess and clear up so it is swings and roundabouts.

If you have fake nails around the place with nothing to do then this is a great idea to reuse them. I also have a little bag of fake nails with different nail designs so when I need a little piece of inspiration I can reach in there are get some.

Here are a few that I made in the past few weeks:

Original concept for my "Starry night" nails // completed look on my YouTube

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Purple rainbow nail look // #glitter #holo and a #gradient – all good things!

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Nail Varnish Colour Wheel

After my beautiful new organisation system, I wanted something to show off the actual colours of my many nail varnishes. Pots never show the real shades as they can often be much darker or lighter on the nails when painted and died.

I think that the wheel system is so pretty as you can look at all the colours at once. The ones photographed are Ciate, but I also have done the rest of my collection.


There are two main ways to show the colour names:

  1. How I have done it, where I cut out a circle of paper, write the names and then stick it on the wheel. I like this better as it is all there in one place and easy to see in an instant.
  2. Number each nail section and then write the list on a separate piece of paper. This may give a prettier look to the wheel as it doesn’t have scruffy handwriting all over it but it means that you have to keep a piece of paper separate.

img_0121The colour wheels I bought was from Sally’s supply store but you can find them much cheaper online. To be honest, as it is really only a tool that you would use personally unless you are a professional so there is no need to spend big on this.

These ones were an 18 wheel display but come in different sizes if you need bigger or smaller.

Other points to note about this is that for the most part I only used one coat of varnish so I can see how opaque each shade is. For the few that I did two coats I made a small dot on the side to show it had two coats so I can remember what each looked like and how it applied.

Finally, it is just me but I love to put everything in rainbow order. The first wheel I just had creme polishes and the second I mixed the creme with the glitter and shimmer shades.

So that was my little project that I did today, I will sort out the rest of the shades later but I just wanted to get the mass of Ciate shades sorted as those are the ones that I don’t know which are which.

Nail varnish colour wheel (nudes, reds and pinks) // all @ciatelondon

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Nail varnish colour wheel (blues, metallic and glitter) // all @ciatelondon

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Nail Art Tools from Poundland

So Poundland is a special place in an English girls heart. For my American viewers Poundland is like the Dollar store as the name implies. However they have branched out in to their own makeup and cosmetics and I was in need of nail art tools so I wanted to see if they did some tools.

I originally wanted just dotting tools but when the brushes are so cheep I thought I would just get a pack of dotting tools and brushes. All coming to £2 total.

The dotting tools are really good, the ball head is very smooth making them really easy to use. The marble effect is really pretty and it has a nice expensive feel to them. Which is amazing for only being a pound.

The brushes are quite good. They are a synthetic hair and apply the nail varnish really well. The very long thin brush isn’t too great however the others including the fan brush is really good quality. I also have had no hairs come out of the brush yet.

Another Poundland find! Yet more nail art tools!

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My top 5 Ciaté nail varnishes

My top 5 favourite nail varnishes (top clockwise) Locket, Hutch, Cookies and Cream, Double Bubblegum and Cutie Pie.

Locket is the most amazing silver glitter shade that has a great amount of foil pieces and glitter to make it an awesome shade for jazzing up any shade base coat.

Hutch is my favourite red by Ciaté because it is a deep red that is perfect for Autumn Winter. I think of this shade like a classic 50’s red lip red – deep and striking.

Cookies and Cream may look quite bland but it is the most perfect nude shade to wear for those occasions where you need your nails to be pretty but understated.

Double Bubblegum is a great shade as it is a blue toned purple which gives wearing a purple shade on your nails look more mature and sophisticated. The light shade is slightly muted so works for all seasons.

Finally we have Cutie Pie and don’t be put off by the name this shade is perfect for that fresh natural nail. If you want a varnish that looks great and perfect for professional wear then look no further.

Nail Varnish Organisation – Spring Clean

So my nail vanish collection was not working for me so I decided to go with a beautifully organised nail varnish stand. It will also help me not buy any more nail varnishes as they all fit perfectly.


5 Tier Nail Polish stand:…
(I will say that all the other reviews for this was positive and is a great stand so don’t let the fact that mine came minus one hole put you off buying it)


Gold Glitter Tip Nails

How to do a glitter tipped manicure. This does look really christmassy but could work well with other colours.

You can use any glitter but would recommend one that is very fine as this will be easier to use and will give the best results.

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Ice Blue Nails

Perfect for winter with the light blue shade and sparkly glitter all over the nails.

I will be doing more Ciate nail looks in the next few weeks after having the nail advent calendar throughout December so now I have a lot more shades to play with.

Ciate shades:
Ahoy Sailor
Snow Globe
Nail Topper in Chalet Chic

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Review: China Glaze Nail Polish in ‘Nice Caboose’

This is my first China Glaze nail varnish and the more I think about it the more I am confused about why I never tried them before. The range of colours is amazing and I have always heard nothing but good reviews about them.

P1080516So I decided to buy one and I wanted a great dark purple for Autumn/ winter that was more on the red side of purple than the blue side like I already have. So I thought that ‘Nice Caboose’ would be the perfect colour for this.

I am going to start with a kind of odd things about this varnish. The colour that appears in the jar is actually how it dries with two coats. I have so many polishes that look amazing in the jar but when they are on your nails they are too sheer or too dark when dry but this one is perfect and looks exactly the same in the bottle.

I hope this is the case with other China Glaze polishes as I get really annoyed when how it is in the bottle is not the same as the dried nail colour.

So the shade itself is a dark purple with a slight slitter of the same shade and a gloss finish. I was quite sceptical of the consistency of the polish when IP1080517 was trying it on for the first time as it is a little too runny for my liking as I prefer a thicker polish. However it applies really nicely despite being a little on the thin side.

The colour pay out is great I would say you could get away with only one coat but two is really better. Drying times is very quick, probably due to the thin consistency. I would say that it took about 10 minutes to dry 100% with two coats and about half an hour till I knew it wasn’t going to smudge or get ruined.

P1080524The application I had to get used to. The brush is very long and thin; the thinnest of the brush is really helpful for applying the product evenly and getting in to those little spaces however the length I found made me a little clumsy when applying in some places as I felt like I didn’t have a lot of control. Kind of like if you try to write with your hand half way up the pen. I did get used to it in the end but it was a little awkward to use at the start.

In terms of being chip resistant I got about four days wear with no chips at all and about a week until I decided to remove the polish. I didn’t use a top coat and I probably will next time I wear this as it might make it last longer. However with the drying times being so quick a little spot check of the nails isn’t going to take very long to do.

I will be purchasing more of China Glaze’s range as I am really happy with this one so leave a comment saying what I should get next.