Saturday, 30 March 2013

Indie Interviews: Femme Fatale Cosmetics

Continuing with our Interviews with Indies series, we're sifting through the mind of Sophie from Femme Fatale Cosmetics today. She wears a lot of hats: as well as making her own polish, she also sells pigments for eyes, face and lips, and she's recently become Australia's first domestic indie polish distributor. How does she do it all?? Read on to find out...

Read More


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Friday, 29 March 2013

An Introduction to Teabagging: Nail Repair Method

So, the worst possible thing has happened. You broke a nail. Ok, maybe it's not THAT bad, but it can be pretty darn annoying! But, never fear, thanks to a regular old teabag, not all hope is lost!

That's not a fun break, and if not fixed, it would break off eventually by itself. To fix this, all you need are the following items:

- Nail file
- Nail glue (you can buy this at chemists, supermarkets, beauty stores like Priceline etc)
- Scissors
- A teabag (any old one, just make sure you get all the tea out first)
- A buffing block if you have one, if not, a very fine grit (smooth) nail file will work too

1. Empty the teabag, and cut a piece out of it big enough to easily cover your break and have a little excess just to keep it strong and secure. Fit it to your nail. My break was quite far along the nail, which is why my teabag piece is so big.

2. Glue the teabag on. If you need a smaller piece, using tweezers may be a good idea to place the teabag on the glue, or you may get stuck!

3. Let the glue dry thoroughly. Trim any over hanging bits of teabag and add another layer of glue.

This picture is two dried layers of glue. You really want to make sure it is dry before moving on. It's shouldn't take long to dry, most nail glues do dry quite quickly.

4. Now that your glue has dried, you can see how much buffing/filing you'll need to do. As you can see here, there's a slight 'bump' on my nail that shows where the teabag is. That needs to be smoothed. So take your buffer/file and being very careful to avoid damage to your nail, file/buff it down. This may take a while, so don't worry if it does take you some time to do it.

It's much smoother once filed. It will keep its strength after filing, and you're now almost done!

5. Polish! I used China Glaze For Audrey (2 coats) and it is nice and smooth!

Some important info:
- Be very careful with your nail glue. If you spill it on cotton, it could ignite. It will most likely get very hot, and steam a bit. 
- This method will, of course, work differently for everyone. It all comes down to body chemistry.
- If you want to remove your patch, just soak your nail in acetone - the foil method will work. 
- If you want to make your patch last, use a non-acetone polish remover in between polish changes.

Happy polishing!

Bec is a qualified Nail Tech and is studying to be a Beauty Therapist. She can be found over at LacquerDreams, or playing pokemon.


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Monday, 25 March 2013

The Ultimate Nail Polish Trivia Quiz

One of the great things about being obsessed with nail polish is that your friends see you as a walking encyclopedia on anything polish-related. You're able to tell what colour polish someone is wearing before they even tell you, and you can name the five most recent OPI collections.

Why not put all that seemingly useless wealth of knowledge to the test in our ultimate nail polish trivia quiz?

Answers are in white underneath the questions - just highlight the words to see them! Don't cheat!

1. What is the proper name of the polish commonly called “Unicorn Pee”?
A: Clarins 230

2. Name three shades from the OPI Australia collection.
A: Fit for a Queensland, Canberra't Without You, Fair Dinkum Pinkum, Red Hot Ayers Rock, Koala Bear-y, Tasmanian Devil Made Me Do It!, A True Ab-Original, Kangarooby, Brisbane Bronze, Digderidoo Your Nails?, Suzi Loves Sydney, Don't Melbourne the Toast

3. What colour is Sinful Colors Pink Diamond?
A: Blue/Purple duochrome micro shimmer.

4. What year was the China Glaze OMG collection released?
A: 2008. It was discontinued and is now HTF. If you see those silver caps while dusty hunting, snap them up quickly!

5. What is the difference between Essie Ruby Slippers and China Glaze Ruby Pumps?
A: Both are red glitters in a red jelly base, but Essie Ruby Slippers has hex glitter and China Glaze Ruby Pumps has microglitter, in different densities.

6. How many nail polishes can a Helmer hold?
A: Around 500

7. What was the first indie brand?
A: Probably Lynnderella, but Hard Candy started out by hand mixing their polishes in 1993 until they took off and went lab manufactured.

8. What year and by which brand was Magnetic polish first seen?
A: 2007, Lancome with Bleu Enigma and Bordeaux Esmee. The L’oreal Star Magnets were released around the same time (L’oreal and Lancome are the same company).

9. What are these polishes named after?
- Pretty Serious BSOD
A: The dreaded Blue Screen of Death, which appears when your PC has a sudden error and destroys all of your unsaved work. There have been numerous reports of BSOD's appearing while girls have been wearing this polish, so Pretty Serious has a disclaimer on their website that they are not responsible!
- OPI What's with the Cattitude?
A: Puss in Boots from Shrek, released as part of the 2010 Shrek Forever After Collection along with Funky Dunkey, Rumple's Wiggin', Ogre-The-Top Blue, Who the Shrek Are You? and Fiercely Fiona.
- NerdLacquer Pinin' For The Fjords
A: Monty Python's Dead Parrot sketch. We'd provide a link here but it won't stay hidden with the rest of the answer. Search for it on youtube!
- Butter London Slapper
A: Slang term for "an individual who is considered to have loose sexual morals or is sexually promiscuous."

10. Which brand has 22ml bottles?
A: ORLY Pre-2005 (They are now are 18ml)

11. Name 3 polish brands beginning with C.
A: China Glaze, Color Club, Candeo Colors, Chi Chi, Colour by TBN, Covergirl, Crowtoes, Cult Nails, Cirque, Contrary Polish, Chirality Nail Polish, Chanel... Plus any others that start with C, obviously.

12. Name 3 polishes beginning with F.
A: We can't possibly list them all here, so we'll trust you on this one!

13. Name 5 blue polishes.
A: Same as above. Any finish counts!

14. Which brand has a polish named XX?
A: Cirque

15. Name 5 polish finishes.
A: Creme, shimmer, foil/chrome, glitter, microglitter, jelly, matte, crelly, shatter, spotted, textured (liquid sand etc).

16. Which grows faster, fingernails or toenails?
A: Fingernails

17. Which grows faster, men’s or women’s nails?
A: Men’s. Isn't that unfair?!

18. Which grows faster, thumb nail or middle finger nail?
A: Middle

19. What is the crescent moon at the base of your nail called?
A: Lunula

20. What is the world record for the longest nails (combined length)?
A: 9.85m. Surprisingly, they belong to a man. Think of how much nail polish it would take to paint these!

21. What is the world record for the most people painting their nails simultaneously?
A: 1156, in an event organised by the Taiwan Nail Association. Who's up for trying to break this record?

Your score:

0-5: You're a nuggle! You have a love of painting your nails and are fascinated by the intricacies of the world of nail polish, so you're still learning all the ins and outs. Don't worry though, soon you'll be able to rattle off these facts in the blink of an eye.

5-15: You're obsessed with nail polish! As if you needed to do a quiz to tell you that. All your friends make a note of looking at your nails whenever you see them, and you know off the top of your head the cheapest places to buy any brand. You're an asset to our community!

15-24: You are officially a nail polish expert! Or maybe you're just a bit too obsessed with polish... Inhaling all those fumes must have had some sort of effect on your brain to make you remember all of these facts. Other symptoms include grabbing your helmer (instead of your child) when your house is on fire, listing polishes in your collection that are dupes of car colours you see as you're driving, and refusing to go outside with naked nails. We bow down to your supreme knowledge, O wise one.

How did you score? Did you learn anything new? We sure did!

This post was brought to you by the collective knowledge of the Lacquerheads of Oz team and Kaz from Pretty Serious and Pretty Random, our resident nail polish historian.


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Nail art tutorial: Drag Marble

Hi! Brie here, (aka @strawbrie on Instagram).

I've got a simple pictorial to share with you today which uses the "Drag Marbling" technique.
Read More


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

DIY Moisturising Glycerin/Acetone Nail Polish Remover Recipe

As you might’ve noticed, many of us Lacquerheads use a DIY glycerin/acetone remover. Why?

Read More


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Monday, 18 March 2013

How to remove glitter - The foil method

Hi there! My name is Elissa and I’m so excited to be bringing you my first post on Lacquerheads of Oz! :)

Let’s be honest. Most of us love glitter polishes. They’re so sparkly and eye-catching! But many of us will avoid buying or wearing the pretty glitters because they are such a pain to remove. That was definitely the case for me… until I found out about the “foil method” for removing glitter polish! You’ll never cringe at the thought of wearing (and having to remove) that sparkly goodness on your nails ever again!

Read More


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Saturday, 16 March 2013

Which bit is which? Anatomy of the nail

The anatomy of the nail isn't all that complicated, but is helpful to know when taking care of your pretties. The diagram below shows my thumb nail, and the 9 main parts of the nail which are explained in more detail below. The left side of the diagram shows the parts of the nail we can see from the outside, while the right hand side shows the two parts that are inside our fingers that we can’t see from just looking at our nails.

1. Free Edge 
The free edge of your nail is the portion that is no longer attached to the nail bed (see point 8). The purpose of the free edge is to protect the fingertips from pressure or damage. People that usually have a long free edge can experience sensitive fingertips should it break or be cut down to the hyponychium (see point 2).

2. Hyponychium (hie-po-knee-ki-yum) 
The hyponychium is commonly referred to as the 'quick'. This is where your skin joins the end of your nail, and it creates a seal. The hyponychium exists to protect the nail bed from bacteria and infections.

3. Nail Plate 
This is what is commonly referred to as the 'nail' when we talk about polishing our nails etc. This is the pink, hard part of your nail that we cover when we polish the nail. Its purpose is to protect the nail bed from damage, such as bangs and knocks. The nail plate is made up mostly of keratin & is not living.

4. Nail Wall 
The nail wall or side wall is the skin that grows along each side of the nail. In this skin there are grooves which guide the growth of the nail and creates the shape our nails grow in. This is where you find hang nails (which are the result of dead skin growing up the nail, similar to cuticles).

5. Cuticle 
Not to be confused with the eponychium (point 7), the cuticle is dead skin that lays on the surface of the nail plate, usually near the base of the nail. This can be pushed up with a cuticle pusher and removed with erasers and creams. This is dead skin that should not be painful when removing. The cuticle has no function.

6. Lunula (loon-ool-a) 
The lunula is the white half circle that you see on your nails and is actually the visible portion of the matrix (see point 9). While you can see this, it's actually an internal part of the nail and is part of the matrix, which produces the cells to create the nail. This part of the nail will be slightly softer than the rest of the nail as the cells in this area are not fully dead.

7. Eponychium (ee-poh-knee-ki-yum) 
This is commonly mistaken as the cuticle when people discuss the nails. This is the living skin attached to the base of the nail and forms another seal, just like the hyponychium. The purpose of the eponychium is to protect the matrix (point 9) from bacteria and infection. If the seal between the eponychium and nail plate is broken it can be quite painful. The eponychium is living skin and should never be cut with anything, such as cuticle nippers.

8. Nail Bed 
The nail bed is situated directly under the nail plate and gives a pink appearance to the nail. This is due to the nail bed supporting the blood supply to the nail, this is how the nail receives oxygen and nutrients – disbanding the myth that you need to give your nails time to 'breathe' between coats of polish (polish ALL the nails!).

9. Matrix 
Finally we have the matrix. This is not visible and is just under the skin at the base of the nail, as shown in the diagram. The matrix is responsible for producing the cells to create the nail plate. If the matrix is damaged, it can cause the nail to grow with deformities, such as severe ridges. If damaged badly enough, it can actually cause the nail to grow into obscure and unrecognisable shapes.

While there are more parts of the nail than you'd first imagine, it's all pretty straightforward in the end. Mostly, knowing the difference between the cuticle and the eponychium is vital when applying cuticle nippers to the nail as infection can cause not only pain, but enduring problems with the nails, so don't chop at any living skin!

Julz is an avid nail art fanatic currently studying her Certificate II in Nail Technology. When she’s not working her 95 reception job, she’s painting her nails or planning trips to the beach with her friends for some camping & drinking fun – and on occasion has snuck some polishes to the beach with her! You can find out more about Julz on her blog Julz Perri Nails, Instagram (@julzperri), or her Facebook page.


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Aussie Nails Monday Round-up: Stripes

Another week, another Aussie Nails Monday! This week’s theme was Stripes. Let’s see some of the awesome stripy designs from this week.

Read More


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Where (else) to buy indies

So you’ve been bitten by the polish bug and your ulta3, OPI or Zoya just isn’t cutting it anymore. Enter the world of indie polishes.

The lacquer world is undergoing a huge boom with indie polishes - a little over a year ago there was only a small handful of indie polish makers, now there are new creators popping up every week.

Read More


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Femme Fatale Cosmetics giveaway winner

The winner has been drawn for our recent giveaway celebrating the launch of Femme Fatale Cosmetics as Australia's first indie distributor - the lucky winner is Carli. She's responded to claim her prize, which is this super indie prize pack, containing Girly Bits Eggnogoholic, Gloss ‘n Sparkle Slowly Growing Deaf and Femme Fatale Displaced Dreams.

Read More


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Monday, 11 March 2013

Tutorial: How to build a Helmer

We briefly mentioned what a Helmer is in this newbie vocab post here - it’s a stack of drawers from IKEA, which nail polish addicts discovered was amazing for housing hundreds of polishes in one neat block.

So you’ve started collecting polish, and you took the leap, braved the crowds at IKEA and got yourself a Helmer - what now? Luckily Kaz of Pretty Random and Pretty Serious fame is happy to guide us on our journey...

How to Build a Helmer

Read More


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Saturday, 9 March 2013

Indie Interview: Shades of Phoenix

Now for the next installment of our Indie Interview series: Teneil from Aussie indie line Shades of Phoenix has kindly taken the time out from mixing loads of polish for some exciting upcoming events to answer our (mildly) probing questions...

Read More


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Friday, 8 March 2013

Aussie Nails Monday Round-up: Galaxy Nails

Don't forget to enter our Femme Fatale Cosmetics giveaway to celebrate the launch of Australia's first indie distributor! Three gorgeous indie polishes are up for grabs.

This week for Aussie Nails Monday, the theme was Galaxy Nails! Here’s just some of the out of this world designs that were created this week.

Erin from Erinzi’s Nails galaxy nails are seriously eye-catching and so realistic!

Read More


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Instagram Tips & Tricks with @strawbrie Episode 3: Tagging and Chain Games

Brie here again! A few of you have questions about "tagging" and "chain games", so I'm going to explain how these work & how to use them appropriately. So let's get this party started!

Read More


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

WTF Mate!? Nail Slang for Newbies

Like many other hobbies, the polish community has a lot of terminology that can be pretty incomprehensible to newbies or outsiders. HG, undies, lemmings – it can sound like a whole other language at first. For your entertainment and education, I collected a short list of the most commonly misunderstood terms, and presented them to my boyfriend to see how many someone with no knowledge at all of the polish community could guess. Let’s see how he did!

Bin Diving/Dusty Hunting
BBG: Like dumpster diving, but for nail stuff
Answer: More or less, correct. Bin diving and dusty hunting is the practice of scrounging through bargain bins in search of hard to find, or just awesome polishes that have been overlooked by other people.

BBG: This has to be something to do with putting on polish. Like, dabbing it on?
Answer: Correct! Dabbing is a technique used for applying very glittery polishes, and is done pretty much exactly how it sounds like it would be. Great for maximising glitter coverage!

BBG: Someone you conned into selling you something for way less than it’s worth.
Answer: Incorrect! A dupe is a close replica of another polish, often cheaper or easier to find than the original polish. For example, if you can’t get hold of Deborah Lippman’s Across The Universe, you could get a dupe like Sally Hansen’s Mermaid’s Tale or Essence Blue Addicted because they look very similar.

BBG: The person in charge of a community, like a boat captain?
Answer: Incorrect. A Helmer is an IKEA-made storage cabinet with six drawers, that is particularly good for storing polish. How much polish a Helmer holds is a riddle that plagues nail communities, but the most common answer is, "Not enough".

BBG: Huge Glitter? Hairy Goat? Handsome Giraffe?
Answer: You can tell he’s getting a little tired of not knowing the answers already. HG stands for Holy Grail, and refers to any product that is the absolute best in your opinion: the best topcoat, the greatest glitter on earth, the perfect nail file…you get the idea.

BBG: Something to do with TV channels, like VHS
Answer: Incorrect. These terms are used for polishes that are difficult to find; they might be discontinued, limited edition, or maybe they’re just not available in your country. HTF stands for Hard To Find, and VHTF is Very Hard To Find. If you see these tags on an eBay listing, prepare to dip into your savings.

Hungry Polish
and Glitter Food
BBG: Polish that needs you to rub protein powder into the surface? Is Glitter Food the protein powder?
Answer: Incorrect - it's a lot less creepy than it sounds. Hungry Polish is polish with a LOT of glitter in it, which often dries to a bumpy surface. Glitter Food is any topcoat thick and oozy enough to get into all the gaps, "feeding" the polish, allowing it to dry to a smooth, shiny surface. There is also a topcoat by Nail Pattern Boldness named “Glitter Food” for this purpose.

BBG: Adding something to dead polish to make it live again.
Answer: Sort of. Frankening is the practice of mixing polishes to make a new creation, like mixing paints until they are exactly the right colour. Often people will mess around with frankens before embarking on creating their own polishes from scratch.

BBG: ISO is a file extension for disc images - Is this a picture of the whole bottle, or something?
Answer: Incorrect, but honestly, this one threw me for a long time too, because this acronym is used quite often in other circles to mean something completely different. In the nail polish world, this acronym simply means In Search Of, and is used in wanted ads.

BBG: Someone who joins in a sale because everyone else is, even though they can't really afford it.
Answer: Incorrect. A lemming is a polish that you really, really want, but don’t yet have. Maybe it's HTF, maybe you're just broke. Either way, getting your paws on this polish is called "squashing a lemming", for fairly obvious reasons.

Nail Mail
BBG: This isn’t actually packages full of nails, is it? Because that’s some Clive Barker imagery right here.
Answer: Incorrect, and creepy. Nail mail is parcels full of polish, tools, whatever delightful nail-related goodies that arrive on your doorstep and make your day. People in nail communities (ie. me) often get so excited they post pictures of these parcels, to share the excitement around.

BBG: A collection of pink polishes
Answer: Incorrect. Nubbins is an affectionate nickname for short, square nails – they’re sort of nubs, so being the adorable people they are, the nail community lengthened this to nubbins.

BBG:That's me, isn't it?
A: Ding ding, correct! A nuggle is someone new to the world of nails, or someone relatively inexperienced. It's probably pretty obvious, but for the sake of clarity, the term is a play on Muggles, used in the Harry Potter books to refer to people who can't do magic.

BBG: Gluing postage stamps to your nails to make a design.
A: An interesting nail art idea, but incorrect. Stamping is a technique for decorating your nails. Basically, you use plates with various designs on them, and a rubber stamping tool to transfer the designs onto your nails. It's mostly used for designs that look amazing, but that only a total genius could manage to create with a brush.

BBG: I know this one! It's like what you do with paint, right?
Answer: Mostly correct - it’s a test of what a polish looks like when you wear it, as opposed to in the bottle, just like painters will do with paint. If someone is selling on a polish, they will often use SW (swatched) to indicate that it’s been used previously, but only to paint one hand, or a couple of nails, to test it out rather than doing a full manicure.

BBG: Didn’t a guy get thrown off Big Brother a couple of years ago for doing this?
Answer: So very incorrect. Teabagging is a technique for fixing broken nails with a teabag – there will be a whole article explaining exactly how, so suffice to say it has nothing to do with genitals of any kind, just an actual tea bag.

BBG: Uuuuum…those things you have on right now?.
Answer: Incorrect! Despite what a lot of nuggles think, when we talk about undies we aren’t actually referring to special panties/knickers that we wear while polish shopping, or painting your nails. We are in fact not talking about any kind of lingerie at all. Undies/Underwear in the polish world refers to polishes that are good to wear under other polishes. Just as some dresses can be a little too transparent, so are some amazing polishes. The solution in both cases is undies.

BBG: Very Nice Lady? Very Nasty Legs? Veronica's New Lock?
Answer: Wrong, wrong, and wrong. VNL stands for Visible Nail Line, and refers to the way some polishes are transparent enough to see where the nail hangs out over the edge of your finegr. Opinion is divided on whether this is a good or bad thing - personally I LOATHE it, but some people don't mind it, particularly if you're using something like a nice soft subtle pink.

So my boy didn’t do particularly well – 3 out of a possible 18, only because I gave him half marks for two of them - but that’s only to be expected from a nuggle. How many did you guess right?

Cassie is a thirty something Sydneysider, who can be found spouting her endless opinions all over the internet. Her opinions are largely confined to The Reluctant Femme at present, but if you feel like you need a constant stream of it, she can also be found on Twitter (@anwyn).


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!

Saturday, 2 March 2013

Where to Buy Indies: Femme Fatale and Giveaway

Who amongst us hasn't felt the pain of trying to get their hands on that elusive wishlist indie from the US? Setting your alarm clock for 3 am, hitting refresh repeatedly as you squint at the screen with tired, blurry eyes, then getting stung by excessive postage costs and long delivery times? And let's not even mention the cartjackers.

Well, suffer no more Aussies! Sophie of Femme Fatale Cosmetics has taken it upon herself to become Australia's first dedicated indie distributor. Now, not only can we get indies at reasonable hours, we can also take advantage of domestic shipping costs and local delivery times - how's that for handy?

The brands currently stocked are:

- Contrary Polish
- CrowsToes
- Emily de Molly
- Girly Bits
- Gloss 'n Sparkle
- Femme Fatale Cosmetics (Sophie's own line).

There are other big name international indie and boutique lines which will be stocked in the future, including Rainbow Honey, Cirque, HARE, Smitten, Enchanted and Lush Lacquer.

All brands are competitively priced (hurray!). However, restocks for international lines are likely to occur only every 3-4 months, so if you see something you like, be sure to grab it! Restocks for Australian brands will be occurring more frequently, and having a single distributor means you can nab all your lemmings in one go.

Many of us who have bought from Sophie's store in the past know her commitment to customer service - we Aussies are fortunate to be in such good hands! Luckily for overseas polish-lovers, Sophie is also looking into setting up international distribution.

To celebrate the launch of the first Aussie indie distributor, Sophie has generously donated an awesome prize pack containing:

- Girly Bits Eggnogoholic (retail value $12.00)
- Gloss ‘n Sparkle Slowly Growing Deaf (retail value $10.00)
- Femme Fatale Displaced Dreams (retail value $9.75) - this hasn't even been released yet!

This giveaway is open to Australian residents only.

Enter using the Rafflecopter widget below (full terms and conditions are in the widget):

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Got any suggestions, comments or useful tips to add? Please tell us!