Sunday, February 24, 2013

From Italy With Love: LAYLA Ceramic Effects' The Butterfly Effect

Ciao bella!

I have been very fortunate to meet so may wonderful people since September! During this time I have received a few special packages, but the one I am about to show you did quite a bit of traveling. My friend, Ghila from Nails Noob, sent me a lovely package all the way from her home country of Italy. I was super excited to get it, and I can definitely tell all the love that was put into sending it stateside!

She sent me quite a few amazing things. Before I get into sharing the package contents, I wanted to feature one of the polishes she sent. LAYLA is a cosmetics company based out of Milan, Italy that has been getting a lot of attention over in the US for the past year or so. They have a great 3-free line, of many finishes and shades. The Butterfly Effect ( a dupe of Nfu Oh 51 and cousin of Cult Nails Clairvoyant, distant relative of Clarins 230 and Max Factor Fantasy Fire) is pretty amazingly awesome. The polish itself is a luscious royal purple jelly with iridescent multicolor flakies. The color shift from ruby red to emerald green ( and every color in the spectrum) is noticeable and stunning. I was in Sephora and one of the girls grabbed my hand to see what I was wearing. It's that cool. It was a smooth application and opaque in three coats.

In addition, Ghila also sent me two other polishes that I will be featuring soon. First up is LAYLA Softouch in Golden Touch. The Softouch line features a sueded matte metallic finish. It's very elegant. She also sent Lady Venezia in Oro/ No. 22. This is a delightfully sunny gold microglitter in a golden tinted base. 

In addition she sent me some wonderful natural and cruelty free products, Ghila has taken a firm commitment on her blog and in her life to support this great cause. ( Way to go, sista!) She sent me a handcrafted soap with herbs from her garden, honey manicure creme, lemon extract for baking, and some samples of hair and skin products. What a stellar introduction to Italian health and beauty products!

I can't thank Ghila enough for her generosity, hopefully my package to her will be making it's way soon... 

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Takko Lacquer's Glittergasm & We're All Mad Here: Guest Post at Imperfectly Painted!

Hello, lovelies! Today I was invited to post for the amazing Stephanie at Imperfectly Painted. It is a total ode to Florida! Stephanie is a part of the Beauty Bloggers of Central Florida and Sheryl and her lovely Takko Lacquers also originate from there. I hope you enjoy and if you don't already follow Steph, go over there and share the love!

Takko Lacquers are available for sale at Etsy and Mei Mei's Signatures. They range from $9-$15 USD and ship both domestically and internationally depending on the stockist.

In the words of Sheryl..."Peace, Love, & Polish!"

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Perfectly Preppy and Presidential: Zoya's Indigo & Tosca

Here is to a fabulous three day weekend for my US followers! Monday is the observation of Presidents' Day. My manicure is both a nod to the day and a bit of a palate cleanse after two weeks of intensive nail art.

Today is also a bit of a first, since I have not yet worn a full Zoya mani before. As a part of a Zoya promotion, I purchased three full sized lacquers for $10. Indigo, Tosca, and FeiFei (the OPI On Her Majesty's Secret Service dupe- yes, it's my polish crush.) On to the exciting part...

Indigo is a deep Prussian blue shimmer with a dash of holographic microglitter. It is an exotic and intense shade that captures the beauty of the night sky. This shade originally debuted with Zoya's Downtown collection. This polish is a perfect two coat application that glides on without a hitch. Pure perfection.

Tosca is a luminescent and fresh strawberry red with a flash of golden shimmer. It is the equivalent of eating watermelon on a warm July day in New England. Summery bliss. This shade is a part of the Classic Zoya collection. Like Indigo, the application was wonderful in two coats.

Similar to Julep, Zoya's shades have feminine names. Kelly at Tuxarina just purchased her namesake and declared that every nail blogger should do so. I think it's a fabulous idea. Wait, there is no Elena. There is a Lana and Laney, but no Elena. I would be truly appreciative if the lovely people at Zoya could amend that for me... as long its a stellar shade of teal or blue. (I do give them props for having a shade called Marina, like my mom.)

Stay tuned on Wednesday, I will be guest posting for the fabulous Stephanie at Imperfectly Painted. A bit of a preview... there will be Takkos!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Valentine's Day Nail Art Challenge: My Choice!

I don't know if anyone else has been keeping watch, but haven't every mani "Elena's choice" so far... hehehe. What can I say, it's my need to go beyond the typical and usual shining through. Before I get into the post itself. Thanks to Erin for putting this together, and love to Lynette for joining us. Both of you ladies are amazing bloggers and artists! Happy Valentine's Day to both of you lovelies...

Valentine's Day is day where the most grand romantic gestures seem status quo. I figured that I had to get a bit bold and sassy. Also, thanks to Julep's winter collection neon has not died down and that is fine by me. I am still a fan of neutrals with a neon pop in fashion- a great hint of the unexpected. Well as with Valentine's Day, there is no hinting, we are full on neon, baby! I also wanted to celebrate my love of music, I constantly have it playing. I do have a soundtrack to my life.

Since I declared this the season of the trigger mani, I started with a coat of Julep's Fiona (neon green creme) and Madison (neon pink creme) for the base. With Stripe Rite in white, I painted the musical notes. On my index finger and thumb, I accented with two coats of Nicole by OPI's Love Your Life. ( a fishing expedition for those hearts...). I affectionately call this mani, "The Music of My Heart."

Now onto the dedication... this one is dedicated to someone I follow on Twitter, recording artist, record label owner, lover of neon, and 80s culture aficionado, Bylli Crayone. He has such love for his fans, it's incredible. I always have respect for someone who makes the time for others to feel special. You know how I feel about "sharing the love", so that is why I am sending this one off... Happy Valentine's Day, Bylli!

Happy Valentine's to Jes, my Mom & Dad, my best friends, my lovely bloggers-in-crime, and all of you who read and follow ECKlipsed by Color. *kiss*

Now go on and check out the amazing Erin at LovelyLacqueredLife and the lovely Lynette at Pink & Purple Dots. These girls are beyond fantastic with their nail art... Remember, share the comments, share the love!

Just a preview of what is to come... more Whimisical Ideas by Pam! I finally got my hands on some Takko Lacquers! Essie's Mojito Madness is all mine! Thanks to an awesome chick, there are some Laylas on the way...

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Valentine's Day Nail Art Challenge: Hearts

I can't believe we are nearing the end of another challenge! Thanks again to Erin for putting this together... it's been super fun so far! I knew exactly what I wanted to do for today as soon as I saw "hearts" on the theme board. One of my favorite things about Valentine's Day are a little candy called Conversation Hearts ( now known as SweetHearts), manufactured by New England based Necco. So without further adieu, my version of Conversation Heart nails...

I started with a skittle manicure of the following shades: Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in Mellow Yellow, Julep's Carrie, Essie's Mint Candy Apple, Sally Hansen Insta Dri in Petal Pusher, and Julep's Sally. I then drew hearts with my Stripe Rite in White. Within each heart (and around the one on my thumb) I used either, Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in Disco Ball, Wet N Wild's Can-Can you Hang the Mistletoe, or Julep's Harper as a glitter coat depending on the shade. Finally with my Sinful Colors striper in Be My Valentine, I free handed the words "Be Mine" on the heart on my thumb. To give the hearts that "powdery" candy texture, I finished with a top coat of Sephora by OPI's matte top coat.

My dedication today goes out to all the awesome people I have met while blogging. Though I know you through "conversation" (ha, ha) only, you have been so lovely and supportive while ECKlipsed by Color has been getting off of the ground. Special shout outs to Kelly, Ghila, Lynette, Amanda, Erin, Ave, Katie, Alli, Pam, Wes, Kylie, Hayley, Christina, Caitlin and Paula. (I will link to all of their sites tonight- you must check them out!)


 Now go on and check out the amazing Erin at LovelyLacqueredLife and the lovely Lynette at Pink & Purple Dots. These girls are beyond fantastic with their nail art... Remember, share the comments, share the love!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Valentine's Day Nail Art Challenge: Cupid's Curse

Today's theme threw me a bit, I didn't quite know how to illustrate it. I mean it seems so lovely, sinister and quite conceptual, but my nails only afford me so much real estate. Thanks to Amanda at the Nail Polish Enthusiast for giving me some inspiration on this one!

So I went with my favorite, the trigger mani. (Cupid just found himself a gun.) I painted my pinky, ring, and middle fingers with Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Midnight In NY. My index and thumb were painted with a coat of Finger Paints in Paper Mache. I added two halves of a broken heart with Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear in Fuchsia Power. The detailing and arrows were done with Stripe Rite in White and Black. I topped the whole look off with JENsations' Diamonds Are Forever.

Onto my Valentine's dedication, this one is for all those who have fallen in love and then out of love. Cupid is pretty sneaky, so you never know what may be around that corner. Pesky arrows.


Now go on and check out the amazing Erin at LovelyLacqueredLife and the lovely Lynette at Pink & Purple Dots. These girls are beyond fantastic with their nail art... Remember, share the comments, share the love!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Valentine's Day Nail Art Challenge: Gradient/Ombre

I think this is the latest I have ever posted a set of challenge nails. I feel like such a slacker. Forgive me. So on to business, my lovelies. Today is technically a "girly" gradient or ombre. Now I may be sassy, sexy, and bold, but I have never subscribed to girly. It's in the same vein as why I don't love pink, butterflies, and roses... not my cup of tea. Tea, I do love though.  As with the rest of the challenge, I have put my own spin on this and I hope you enjoy...

I started with a base of Essie's Mint Candy Apple. I have been in love with this shade since its release in 2009. I free-handed some white hearts at the base of each nail with Stripe Rite in white. My glitter gradient was achieved with Essie's Beyond Cozy, a luxe soft silvery-gold metallic full coverage glitter, Julep's Vivian, a stunning "champagne bubble" glitter, and Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Snow Globe, an iridescent multi-hex glitter. Perfect minty confection.

As with all my other Valentine's manicures, this is a dedication. Today, I am sending love to my five dearest friends. Thank you for all the times you have been there for me, words can't express my gratefulness. Also, thank god for the fact that you all love the finer things in life... nothing wrong with that. So many great times spent, and so many more to come... Love you all...


Now go on and check out the amazing Erin at LovelyLacqueredLife and the lovely Lynette at Pink & Purple Dots. These girls are beyond fantastic with their nail art... Remember, share the comments, share the love!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Valentine's Day Nail Art Challenge: Roses

Welcome to day two of the challenge- roses! Don't get me wrong, this is a beautiful flower- it has just never been a favorite. I knew that I had to do this with a bit of an Elena spin to make it work. My design today is based off of my wedding bouquet. I did have roses, but they were "Super Green" roses. (Thank you, Martha Stewart, for introducing me to something that had to be shipped from a greenhouse across the country...) It came out quite beautiful and I have a picture below to share with you. I have been dedicating my manicures so far during this challenge, and this one is for Jesse. He and I had our first date eight years ago yesterday, and we will be married five and a half years this month. Love you, Jes.

I also want to thank the lovely and generous, Katie from the Daily Varnish for assisting in today's manicure. She ran a contest on Twitter to guess her manicure color and I won. Being the cool chick that she is, she sent me that polish along with a few others ( and a bunch of other cool stuff). One of the polishes she sent was Revlon's Heavenly, a great square iridescent glitter coat. It looks like confetti and has a bit of a vintage feel. I layered this over Julep's Gayle.

For the main design on my thumb, I used Julep's Kate, Fiona, Ivy, and Gayle. I finished off some of the detailing with Sinful Colors striper in Jungle.

Now go on and check out the amazing Erin at LovelyLacqueredLife and the lovely Lynette at Pink & Purple Dots. These girls are beyond fantastic with their nail art... Remember, share the comments, share the love!

Monday, February 4, 2013

Valentine's Day Nail Art Challenge: Love Notes

Dear (your name here),

It's day one of the Valentine's Day Nail Art Challenge. I wanted to thank you for all the love you have shown my blog. It makes my day to see your great comments and all the pages views.

I've got something special just for you. Just a little something to let you know how much I appreciate your support. I dedicate this mani to you...

I started with a base of Julep's Sally, a stunning ivory creme polish, to mimic parchment. I used Whimsical Ideas by Pam's Peppermint Schtick for an amazing splash of red and white glitter.

On my ring finger, I painted a piece of notebook paper with Julep's Kate, Annie, and Madison. On my thumb, the envelope was created with Julep's Kate and Teresa. The hearts were done with Sinful Colors striper in Be My Valentine.

Be sure to show Erin at LovelyLacqueredLife and Lynette at Pink & Purple Dots some love. I can just imagine how amazing theirs came out!

Love Always,


Sunday, February 3, 2013

Introducing Effervescence Nail Lacquer: Fairy's Breath

Come closer... I have a secret to tell you. This is my first holographic nail polish. Can you believe it? I will tell you for my first, I picked a stunner. This is the final Effervescence Nail Lacquer I have for you, Fairy's Breath. Amazing.

Fairy's Breath is a highly holographic silver that can be worn on its own ( like I am showing, or as a top coat to add a boost to a lovely creme polish. To reach opacity, I used about 5 coats. The polish is not too thin and not too thick. It was easy to put on that many coats and have it dry well.When this lacquer hits the sun, it is breathtaking. Overall this is a fun and whimsical color, like it's name.


I truly have enjoyed wearing Caitlin and Paula's creations and look forward to buying and wearing more! Please go and check out their Etsy store. Their customer service is top notch and delivery time was really fast. I can't say enough about this line!


I have a lot of fun things in store this week since it is a challenge week! Ezzi from LovelyLacqueredLife is hosting a super fun Valentine's themed challenge that myself and the lovely Lynnette from Pink & Purple Dots will be participating in.

Stay tuned for tomorrow, day one... Love Notes!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

A Tribute to Amanda's Mom...

During my adventures in the nail world, I have been fortunate to meet Amanda at Nail Polish Enthusiast. She is a talented nail blogger and an awesome person! When she had asked if we would join her in a memorial post for her mom, who passed ten years ago today, I immediately wanted to join in.

For nail inspiration, Amanda told us that her mom loved tulips, the color red, and vintage jewelry. Also, Amanda has designed a nail lacquer, Tuilleries, along with LEX.  (The Tuileries Garden is a public garden located between the Louvre Museum and the Place de la Concorde in the 1st arrondissement of Paris that was created by Catherine de Medicis.)

Though I love nail art, I wanted to do something vintage-y, something feminine, and something tulip-colored. I ended up finding a solution that I think worked quite well.

I went with Nail Rock's Nail Caviar in Venus Gold/ Venus.  Easy application and it looks like vintage jewelry for your nails. The caviar beads were a selection of red, fuchsia, teal, rust and gold. 

Amanda, may the memory of your mom be eternal. ( This is a Greek customary saying. ) Thank you, for letting us share in this day of remembrance with you.