Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Hello ladies,

Today I wore Opulent Cloud under the magnolia trees. I loved seeing the gold duochrome highlighted by the sun. The base reminds me of a pewter statue. There is a hint of purple swirled into the blend. The color looks like gold, silver and pewter had been melted down and crafted into jewelry for the nails.

Using white pearl special polish, I stamped the blooms and flourishes design from Konad plate M77. This pattern reminds me of Baroque wallpaper. I could imagine this combination adorning the walls of a palace. I added grey pearls and metallic jewels as accents.

Opulent Cloud was opaque in two coats. The dry time was a little slower than I would have liked. There were some visible brush strokes, but the gilded duochrome distracts from their appearance on the nail. Such minor application issues could not even begin to sway my love for this polish!

Part of the Sally Hansen High Definition Fall 2009 Collection, Opulent Cloud is discontinued. I still hear of some ladies finding bottles in aisle displays. For a chance to win a bottle of Opulent Cloud, please visit the Smooth and Polished Giveaway to enter.

Konad image plate M77 was provided for my consideration. Konad products are available for purchase at

Happy painting, ladies!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

My commitment to trinkets

Hello ladies,

I added a feature to painted Lady fingers. There is a new section in the left sidebar called Contests, Competitions and Giveaways Galore! There you will find announcements about giveaways and such happening around the nail blogging community. I am also including make up giveaways and etsy arts and crafts giveaways for jewelry or other trinkets.

For all those who love contests, please visit that section often. I am going to try to update it daily. All you have to do is click on the photo and you will be whisked away to enter the giveaway of your choice. Best of luck to each of you and have fun with it!

I often walk by these pretty white blossoms. I wanted to share them with you. Tomorrow will bring sunlight and a shimmering manicure.

Please let me know if this is a feature you will make use of and enjoy.

Happy painting, ladies.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Skin MD Natural Shielding Lotion + Sunscreen SPF 15

Hello ladies,

One of the things I feel strongly about when it comes to the health of the skin is daily use of sunscreen on the face. I wear a moisturizer with SPF 15 or higher every day to protect my skin against sun exposure. This has been a daily practice for me since I was 12 years old. I have tried many facial moisturizers with SPF and can attest that the Skin MD Natural Shielding Lotion + Sunscreen is a quality product.

Admittedly, the thought of using a shielding lotion on my face was daunting. I was concerned the trademark protective layer offered by Skin MD lotion would feel sticky or oily to the touch. I was worried about my make-up refusing to blend properly. I also was troubled that I would notice the shielding ingredients and they would feel heavy on the skin.

Thankfully, my concerns were alleviated after one use of Skin MD Shielding Lotion. The formula felt light in texture. It glided across my skin, leaving the surface layer smooth beneath the touch of my fingers. Hours later, my cheeks and my forehead still felt smooth and hydrated. This is remarkable since my skin type is dry and sensitive. It was wonderful to find a product that is moisturizing and gentle, while still providing adequate sun protection.

The lotion with sunscreen does not perform like a typical product with SPF 15. Usually I have to wait at least five minutes before applying my makeup. I have often found other natural products with sunscreen to be overly emollient. The Skin MD Shielding Lotion absorbed easily. The protective layer felt very much like the natural softness of well cared for skin.

I also appreciate the neutral scent of Skin MD Shielding Lotion + Sunscreen SPF 15. It doesn't have the tropical beach scent typical of many SPF products. I do not want my face to smell like sweetened coconut 365 days a year! There is a slight hint of the floral and herbal ingredients. I don't think it would be perceptible to most people not familiar with the extracts of comfrey and chamomile. There is a slightly leafy smell with a hint of golden fruit and flowers. Chamomile can smell a bit like apples.

I also noticed the scent of aloe, which has a watery and green aroma. I would classify the scent overall as lightly herbal and gender neutral. The smell is pleasant and calm. To discern any scent, I had bring the bottle to my nose. I didn't notice any particular fragrance while wearing the lotion.

Other botanical ingredients include extracts of arnica and yarrow. The formula also contains Vitamin E. I was impressed reading the ingredients list and seeing a mixture of plant extracts known for their healing and skin soothing properties.

I would certainly recommend Skin MD Natural Shielding Lotion + Sunscreen SPF 15. I hope in the future, an SPF 30 formula is released. I prefer using a higher SPF in summer weather. I would like there to be one available with the hydrating and skin protective qualities found in the Skin MD formula. For all the bottles of lotion that fill my bathroom cabinet, I can't really think of another quite like it.

Skin MD Natural Shielding Lotion + Sunscreen SPF 15 was sent to me for review. This product can be purchased from For a chance to win a bottle of Skin MD Shielding Lotion + Sunscreen and the standard formula Skin MD Shielding Lotion, please visit the contest post.

Happy painting, ladies!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Little fireflies

Hello ladies,

Today I am sharing an untried and true manicure, a long ago beauty: China Glaze Crystal Ball. Within the burgundy shimmer are holographic particles that shine like little fireflies. For added sparkle, I centered large rainbow rhinestones on each tip. These nail jewels are from Essence.

I was so happy to be greeted by bright daffodils near Fitler Square. I loved how the Spring yellow complemented the glitter in Crystal Ball.

Crystal Ball took three coats to achieve perfect opacity. Otherwise, the application was the typical salon quality expected from China Glaze. The glitter in Crystal Ball is very similar to China Glaze Fairy Dust. There is something special about having it swirled into the base color rather than painting it as a topcoat.

Unfortunately, this shade has been discontinued and is difficult to find. For a chance to win a new bottle of Crystal Ball, check out the Smooth and Polished Giveaway.

Happy painting, ladies!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

ManGlaze Winner!

Hello ladies,

Today, a winner was chosen for the ManGlaze giveaway!
My lovely assistant Ginger, a miniature poodle, was at the ready.
I gathered the contest entries in a crystal bowl along with Ginger's favorite treat, cream cheese named after our home city.
I placed a dollop of Philadelphia cream cheese at the bottom of the bowl and positioned the contest entries on top. At first, Ginger was demure.
Ginger began the selection process.
We dissuaded her from eating the contest entries...
Even though she thought they were tasty!
She dove in searching...
...and discovered there were consequences to her zeal. She briefly contemplated the cream cheese stuck to her nose.
Undaunted, she tried again!
The winner was chosen!
Ginger selected Lacquer Obsession.

Thank you Ginger! Great job!

Congratulations Jocy! Please visit her blog: She does some very sweet work with the Konad stamper.

Many thanks to Marc from ManGlaze for sponsoring the contest. A special thanks to Ginger and her companion Emily for their efforts in the winner's selection.

I will be tabulating the entries for the Konad Eight Plates Giveaway next.

Happy painting, ladies!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Smooth and Polished Giveaway

Hello ladies,

Welcome to the Smooth and Polished Giveaway! I have a prize package for you that is pampering for the skin and beautifying for the nails. Skin MD Natural has offered full size bottles of their shielding lotion in the regular formula and the SPF 15 formula. In addition, I have collected four hard to find polishes for the winner's pleasure.

I noticed painted Lady fingers is up to 750+ followers. Thank you all so much! I am so happy to have been able to put together this prize for you with the help of Skin MD Natural. Enjoy!

Skin MD Natural Shielding Lotion, Skin MD Natural Shielding Lotion + Sunscreen SPF 15
China Glaze Crystal Ball, Clarins Ocean, Sally Hansen Opulent Cloud, Nina Ricci Vert Imaginaire
China Glaze Crystal Ball: A burgundy shimmer with holographic micro glitter pieces.
Clarins Ocean: An inky blue cream with purple undertones.
Sally Hansen Opulent Cloud: A grey blue metallic with duochrome shimmer.

Nina Ricci Vert Imaginaire: A grey green with lovely gold sparkle.

Skin MD Natural will be shipping the bottles of the regular shielding lotion and SPF formula directly to the winner. These may arrive separately. The four polishes are new bottles purchased by me. I will be shipping the polishes via USPS. During the contest period, I will be reviewing the two Skin MD Natural lotions and showing the four polishes from my personal collection. These polishes are among my favorite discontinued shades.

Many thanks to Skin MD Natural for participating in the Smooth and Polished Giveaway. For more information about their products, please visit

The Smooth and Polished Giveaway is open internationally for followers and e-mail subscribers. The contest runs through the end of the day April 10th. To keep this simple, I am willing to count the date as the last available time zone worldwide. As long as it is April 10th somewhere on the planet, you may still enter.

Here's how to enter:
1) Become a follower or e-mail subscriber of painted Lady fingers. If you are currently a follower or subscriber, that certainly counts! Please let me know in the comments which option you choose for keeping up with painted Lady fingers. I check entries very carefully. If you subscribe via e-mail, your e-mail address must be confirmed through feedburner. 1 entry.

Optional extra entries:
2) Let me know: What is your favorite moisturizer? Have you had a chance to try Skin MD? 1 entry.

3) Blog about the contest. It certainly counts if you have a special area in your sidebar for contests. I will definitely count your entry if your blog is not written in English. I am honored if you choose to tell people in your home country about my blog and the contest. I will also count your entry if your blog is just getting started and has a small number of followers. These extra entries are meant to be inclusive and fun. I hope that answers everyone's questions. :) Please provide a link. 2 entries. If you use one of my contest photos, add another entry.

4) Tweet about the contest. Only once, please. Please provide a link. 1 entry.

5) Have painted Lady fingers on your blogroll or add painted Lady fingers. Please provide a link if I haven't already commented on your blog. Otherwise please remind me. I want to be sure to count the entry even if painted Lady fingers has been on your blogroll for a long time. If you have a nail polish blog and you would like to be on my blogroll, please e-mail me. 1 entry.

You are welcome to put all your entries in one comment or return to the contest post with comments for each entry. Either way works for me. Your entries don't have to be sequential. Enter in any way you like whenever you like before the end of the day April 10. For the ease of your contest host, please include your e-mail with your entry. To qualify, I need to have your e-mail included with one of your entries! Thank you, ladies! I hope you enjoy the offerings.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Wedgwood blue

Hello ladies,

Tranquility from Diamond Cosmetics helped me to celebrate the lovely Spring weather today. The trees are budding and there are bursts of yellow as daffodils and goldenrod raise their petals to the sun. The pastel blue of Tranquility seemed the perfect complement.

When I was creating the manicure, I was thinking about Wedgwood fine china and antique blue cameos. I wanted a look that was soft and delicate and presented beauty in a formal way. A true Wedgwood blue would be a little deeper with a hint of grey. Looking at the modern place settings available, the company seems to have put their name to varying shades of blue. For today, I shall do the same.

I stamped flowers from Konad plate M35 in white special polish. The pearls and cameo were purchased in a lot on ebay.

The formula of Tranquility was a little thick, but I was willing to work with it for the color payoff. For a pastel, the formula is not bad. I didn't need to wear a ridge filling base coat for opacity. Diamond Cosmetics overall handles opacity admirably well. I have confidence I will be able to apply their polishes without encountering streakiness or showing a visible nail line (unless a polish is meant to be worn sheer). I am wearing three coats, but two would suffice for most ladies. I really can't complain about a polish that has a price point of $2.50 and is as beautiful as this one! I do recommend adding Tranquility to your next order.

Tranquility was sent to me for review. US residents can purchase this shade at For international orders, please see this post for e-tailers.

Happy painting, ladies.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Apothecary: Polident and nail stain removal

Hello ladies,

I have been doing some experiments with removing nail staining. I never had stained nails before this past year. I used to buff my nails monthly with occasional touch ups to combat staining caused by problem polishes. When I discovered that buffing ultimately weakens nails, I stopped entirely. This was positive in the sense that my nails have been more resistant to cracks and tears. I haven't had damage that couldn't be held together with a patch in over a year. The difficulty has been that my nails were becoming increasingly stained.

I think I was in denial about the coloring of my nails. Here is a simple test to define the severity of staining you are facing. Find these objects: a sheet of white printer paper, a stick of butter and a jar of mustard. See which of the three colors compare closest to the tones in your nails when you are not wearing polish. This isn't about judgement, but you may need to soak your nails in Polident.

Your level of staining will determine whether Polident is going to function for total stain removal or as a preventative for future staining as your nails grow out. If you have deep yellow or orange tones in your nails, you will likely need to be patient as the most stained areas grow and are filed off. The good news is you will not have to live with staining long term.

Here is how I use Polident for stain removal. I heat water on the stove and remove it before it begins to boil. I pour 2 cups/16 ounces into a shallow dish. I use a flat square plastic container that is heat resistant. You will want to make sure the water level is not more than half the depth of the container you choose. You will need room to comfortably soak all ten nails at once. Drop in four Polident tablets. Wait a minute or two for them to dissolve. Test the water until it becomes an agreeable temperature. Soak for 15 minutes and follow with a thorough hand washing with soap and water.

Although fifteen minutes might seem like an extended amount of time, it can be relaxing to watch part of a movie or a television program while your nails soak. You can keep a towel nearby if you need to remove your hands for a moment. Make sure you have a clock within eye view.

An important tip is to begin your soak with dry nails. Your nails will absorb 2o to 25 % of their weight in water. It takes hours for thoroughly wet nails to be fully dry. Beginning the soak with dry nails is essential. If your nails are already engorged with water, there will be less room for the effective ingredients to do their work of stain removal. For the same reason, wait until after your soak to moisturize.

I noticed minimal change after the initial soak and much improvement after the third attempt. I will be using Polident as a weekly treatment until my nails are completely grown out. The lower third of each nail looks pink and bright. The upper two thirds still need attention.

Feel free to experiment with different soaking times, especially if your nails have minimal staining. You may require fewer tablets as well. The package directions show one tablet, but for a much lesser amount of water than I am using to soak all 10 nails. It's something to keep in mind when factoring your individual needs for stain removal.

I am also going to be doing a post about using lemons for stain removal in the near future.

Have any of you also experienced nail staining? What are your favorite remedies?

Happy painting, ladies!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Icy rainbows

Hello ladies,

I have another older Sally Hansen polish to share with you today: Blue Aura. This polish is part of the Magicals line, a collection of truly spectacular holographic polishes. The bright sun departed minutes before I walked outside. I was hopeful enough to bring my camera with me on my errand to the grocery store.

The sun returned diffusely, directly in front of a cathedral. This was indeed magical given the positioning of the tall buildings that block much of late afternoon rays. There was a clear diagonal of sun across Chestnut Street coming from the direction of the Schuykill River. The first visible beams lit the pavement a few paces ahead of me. Perhaps the sun was possessed by a bit of whimsy and a love of holographic polish.

The application of this polish is workable. It's preferable to let the first coat set before applying the second. Otherwise, the brush will pull polish from the first coat as the second is applied. The formula dries quickly, so this is a small effort. The brush included is on the smaller side and doesn't give the best three stroke application. Expect to do minor clean up. Although Blue Aura wouldn't qualify as a fussy diva polish, it requires a little extra attention. The finished result to me is worth it.

If you have a penchant for holographic polish, the Sally Hansen Magicals are worth seeking on ebay. What do you all think of holographic polish? I have many to share with you if it's something you enjoy seeing on long nails. I may like to try some Konad stamping with holographics as well.

Happy painting, ladies!

Fainting Couch: amidst cherry blossoms

Hello ladies,

It has been an age since I swooned. Needing rest from this season's pastel creams, I brought my bottle of Sally Hansen Salon Arabian Night to assist me in welcoming Spring. This is an untried and true manicure. Arabian Night is from one of the mythic Tracy Reese collections that were distributed sparsely and randomly in drug stores throughout the nation. I found mine on ebay.

Arabian Night is one of the most beautiful shades of purple I own. There is so much gold shimmer blended into the jelly base. I also see hints of pink and green. The colors glow in soft light and appear liquid beneath the sun. Please hold onto your smelling salts before perusing the images below.

I love the lacy patterns of sun and shade on my hand. It was such a delight to encounter a cherry blossom tree completely dressed in pink petals. I was happy to be let the beauty of the blooms enhance this already spectacular polish.

Arabian Night is a little deceptive. Your manicure might seem finished at two coats, but I recommend three for a bolder look. In bright light, the nail line could be visible with only two coats. This polish is a little slow to dry, but I don't care. It can do whatever it wants. I would still wear it and I would still lose consciousness.

Happy Spring, ladies of this hemisphere! Happy painting to all.