Monday, 17 December 2012

A Christmas Nail Art Tutorial

So I have some more festive nails for you, and this time I've gone all out...!

These were so much fun to do and took about 45 minutes whilst listening to Christmas songs! How festive of me!

So I'll explain how I did them and hopefully you can recreate them or maybe just a couple of your favourite designs because they are actually quite simple to do when you break them down into their components. 

BIG TIP: Save the most complex designs for your left hand if you are right handed (or vice versa). Also use toothpicks for the detailed parts. Drop a blob of polish onto a piece of paper, and dip the toothpick in and paint away.

So first my left hand...

Left Hand: Penguin, Snowman, Reindeer, Santa, Holly

-Painted the base black.
-Then did two careful brush strokes rounded at the top of white for the white body, and filled in the gap between them so the penguin had the round white head bits. 
-Then I painted on his teal/blue scarf with a toothpick in a dotting motion. 
-I filled in the nail tip with a black line using the polish brush. 
-Then using the toothpick, dotted on his eyes with black and his beak and feet with yellow.

-Painted the base a sparkly red.
-Splotched on two white circles using the polish brush
-Then I painted on his purple scarf with a toothpick in a dotting motion.
-Then I used black to dot on his buttons and eyes and mouth, and orange for his nose

Reindeer (Rudolph!)
-Painted the base white
-Painted brown polish in the half circle for the head (just use brush strokes off the nail edge for this-really easy)
-Used a toothpick to draw on his antlers with brown
-Used red glitter polish for his sparkly nose
-Dotted white circles on for the eyes using the polish brush
-Drew two black dots in the eyes with a toothpick

Santa face:
-Painted the base a nude beige.
-Painted the top half near the cuticle red.
-Splotched on in a dotting motion white polish on the hat edge of the red and around his face for his beard.
-Used a toothpick to dot on his eyes with black, and his nose with rose pink.

-Painted the base red.
-Using a toothpick drew on the three leaves in a wavy pattern
-Dotted on red glitter polish in the middle to be the berries.

So now for my right hand... 

Right hand: Santa buckle, Santa hat, Candy cane, Christmas pudding, Christmas tree

Santa buckle:
-Painted the base red.
-Used a toothpick (the thicker end) and dotted on a black line across the nail.
-Used a metallic gold, and dotted on the buckle in a rectangle shape using a toothpick.

Santa hat:
-Painted the base metallic gold.
-Used the polish brush, and painted a triangle of red ending on the nail tip.
-Used white polish, and splotched on the hat base and white pom-pom at the top.

Candy cane:
-Painted the base green
-Used a toothpick to dot on the white candy cane shape
-Used a toothpick to dot on the red lines in the candy cane

Christmas pudding:
-Painted the base brown
-Used white polish to splotch on in a random way white drip shapes
-Used a toothpick to draw on the two leaves in a wavy pattern
-Dropped red glitter into the middle of the leaves for the berries

Christmas tree:
-Painted the base sparkly red
-Painted on a triangle with green polish, making the edges blurred (for the pine needles)
-Using a gold colour, used a toothpick to dot on the tinsel in a zigzag manner across the tree
-Using yellow polish, used a toothpick to dot on a star shape at the tree top
-Using a toothpick, dotted on red baubles on the tree

So there you have it! Christmas artwork for your fingertips!

What is your favourite design? I think mine would be either the Reindeer or the Pudding!

These have definitely put me in a more festive frame of mind. Hope you are all enjoying the lead up to Christmas!!

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Christmas Nails

My nails this week have been painted very festively with my favourite Christmas nail polish...

This is OPI's Gettin' Miss Piggy With It! from the Muppets collection last year. I forgot I had it and then when looking for a festive colour it just jumped out at me. It's better than usual glitter polish because when a few layers are painted on it looks more like a metallic foil of red with silver hexagons spattered throughout. About three layers are needed for opacity, or just paint a couple over any red to ensure all the gaps are filled. 

It really looks like you are wearing sparkling rubies on your fingertips, and this nail polish has attracted more compliments over the last week than any other I own surprisingly! It's very stunning and glamorous to wear, and the perfect Christmas polish. As this polish is no longer available in retail stores, any kind of bigger glitter red polish should have a similar effect to this. 

Also in keeping with the festive spirit, I just thought I'd share with you Melbourne's big Christmas tree in the city square... isn't it pretty!? I love seeing all of the decorations in the city at the moment!

And here is my family's Christmas tree! I love it especially because all of the decorations are individualised and personal, rather than just buying a pack of baubles and chucking them all over the tree with no meaning behind each one. 

I hope all of you are enjoying your Decembers so far and feeling very festive! Lots of Christmas parties and celebrations coming up in the next few weeks, how very exciting :)

Merry first week of Christmas!

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Peacock Nails

Ever wanted your nails to look like peacocks? Well they can now by following the simple steps below! It's actually much easier than it looks surprisingly.

My creative sister painted these on her fingernails and this is how she did it:

-Paint a base coat of shimmery dark blue over the whole nail
-Use a small paintbrush and paint a wide stroke of a medium green across your nail whilst still allowing the blue to be visible underneath
-Paint a thinner stroke of light green over the top
-Swirl a gold/green metallic colour over the top
-Drop a blob of yellow in a circle from the polish brush itself
-Drop a smaller drop of the light green inside the yellow circle
-Drop the smallest drop of dark blue in the middle of both circles (the colour you used for the base)
-Finish by painting a glitter top coat over the top of it all

And voila, there you have it! These are sure to attract a lot of compliments and attention, just like the bird itself!

See the picture down below for the exact colours of polish used for this design.

L-R: OPI's It Colour, OPI's Just Spotted the Lizard, Illamasqua's Nomad, OPI's Unfor Greta Bly Blue, OPI's Did It On Em, OPI's Metallic 4 Life

So what do you think of these nails? Isn't my sister a clever cat? 

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

OPI 'The Top Ten' Gift Pack Review

What an incredibly clever gift pack for OPI to bring out right before Christmas. Their top polish colours ever, all wrapped up nicely for the price of two big OPI polishes? Yes please!!!

If ever there was a way to quickly expand your nail polish collection... this is it! And who ever gets through a whole big polish bottle anyway? Now I think about it all of mine have gone gunky before I could use the bottom dregs anyway. So this is a great investment, and a brilliant Christmas gift idea.

We bought this gift pack as a congratulations for finishing uni present for my sister. She has posed as the hand model to demonstrate all of the colours below. The red and brown full polished hands pictured further down are my own, because those were the two colours I hadn't tried anything like before, so I was excited to wear them.

Left hand L-R: Alpine Snow, Kiss Me On My Tulips, Tickle Me France-y, Big Apple Red, Vamsterdam.
Right hand L-R: You Don't Know Jacques!, Bubble Bath, Lincoln Park After Dark, Red Lights Ahead...Where?, I'm Not Really A Waitress.

See order above

Alpine Snow: We already owned a mini from another gift pack and a large of this colour. It is a great plain white, but I don’t know of many people who just wear plain white on their nails. I suggest it would make a great French manicure tip, base for a neon or bold polish to make it pop/opaque, or to layer glitter over the top. Kind of reminds be of painting my nails with white out at school though… not so classy now ay?

Bubble Bath: A pretty perfect sheer pale pink, that needs at least three coats to look nice on it’s own. Or it performs brilliantly as a French manicure pink. Makes you feel girly, pretty and classy when wearing this on your fingertips!

Tickle Me France-y: I feel this colour is the let down of the pack. It’s a neutral brown-pink, that’s kind of a nothingy colour. It’s an ugly pink or a pretty blargh brown really.

Kiss Me On My Tulips: A beautiful bright and Barbie doll pink. Perfectly opaque and creamy, and is a great Spring/Summer colour. Gorgeous colour.

Red Lights Ahead…Where?: This is a nice opaque red with slight orange/yellow undertones, but it’s not for me. I already know with my pink undertones and fair skin that this will not suit me at all. However it looks gorgeous on my olive skinned, yellow undertone sister. Extraordinarily bright, it really makes a nail statement.

Big Apple Red: Now this is the kind of red that will suit me! This is a blue based red without a hint of orange/yellow. This is also a bright red but a bit more subdued that the previous red, as the blue base tones it down slightly. This colour reminds me of Frenchy/nautical outfits, and I can’t wait to wear it with a white and navy striped top!

I’m Not Really a Waitress: This is a Snow White-esque, metallic divine red. Absolutely amazing, and I’m not even a red nail fan. Shines like no other polish before, and looks so mesmerizing and magical on. A great festive choice!

How Snow White is this!? Love it!

You Don’t Know Jacques!: I’m not a huge brown nail fan, but this one is a nice brown. A taupe, creamy mid-tone brown.

Vampsterdam: Gorgeous, sexy, intruiging. It’s a dark, purple metallic colour that looks incredibly magical.

Lincoln Park After Dark: Extremely dark purple colour that is basically black, but without the harsh black gothic edge. More flattering. Wish it looked more similar to how it does in the bottle though.

L-R: Alpine Snow, Kiss Me On My Tulips, Tickle Me France-y, Big Apple Red, Vamsterdam.

L-R: You Don't Know Jacques!, Bubble Bath, Lincoln Park After Dark, Red Lights Ahead...Where?, I'm Not Really A Waitress.
And there you have it! This gift pack was $39.95 from David Jones (can also buy them from Myer in different packaging).

So what do you think? Do you like the colours in this gift pack? What is your favourite? 

If you want to take a look at some of OPI's many other great gift packs, check out my reviews here.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Survey Sunday - November 18th 2012

It's good old Survey Sunday time again! I hope you are all enjoying your Novembers thus far. Mine has been pretty crazy busy lately, and I'm really counting down the days to Christmas and my little fortnight of holidays I've taken off. Need it so badly! 

Anyway hope you are all doing really well, and let's jump into this fortnight's batch of questions:

1. How did you name your blog and why (if you have one)?
Mine's called Yakatey Yak because it incorporates my name - yaKATEy yak, and it also means to chatter away, which is what I do on here. My sister helped me think up its witty name... so a big thanks goes to her!

2. Where do you type the majority of your blog posts? 
Usually via an email to myself. I just write on the train or wherever I am and email myself the post or snippets of it and compile it on the actual blog post page later. Sometimes I type on my computer at home, but posts usually come to me when I'm bored and out of the house doing things.

3. How much time do you get off over Christmas and what are your plans? 
I've taken two weeks off, and sadly mourn the three months of university holidays that I once had. Oh well, two weeks is more than I've had all year, so pretty psyched about that. Just plan to do Christmas lunch and dinner with family at various people's houses, and relax lots and LOTS.

4. What are your top 5 favourite stores to shop for clothes in? 
Marcs, MNG (or Mango), Portmans, Topshop, and I shop in little boutiques a lot.

5. If you were an animal what kind would you be?
I think I'd be a horse. I was going to say a dolphin but then I remembered the deep ocean is kind of scary and I hate sharks so yeah probably a horse. Love horses, and I love the idea of galloping across meadows haha.

6. Are you single or taken? If taken, how long have you been with your partner and where did you meet? 
Taken, and have been with him for 3 years and 3 months (woah). We met through a mutual friend once when I was at school (he dropped a pint of beer on my foot at a party!!), and then years later met him in a lecture at uni again. He thought my name was Claire... but that has since been overlooked :P Now I think about it he didn't start off very well haha!!! ;)

7. What is your favourite makeup brand of all time? 
I would have to say MAC. I just love all of their eyeshadows, eye liners, lipsticks, lipglosses and brushes so incredibly much. I hate their foundations though. And they are quite expensive, and their staff are usually so rude! But I still love their products and just love browsing their counters so much :P


So now it's your turn to answer the questions! Just copy and paste the below questions and answer them in the comments section below:

1. How did you name your blog and why (if you have one)?
2. Where do you type the majority of your blog posts?
3. How much time do you get off over Christmas and what are your plans?
4. What are your top 5 favourite stores to shop for clothes in?
5. If you were an animal what kind would you be?
6. Are you single or taken? If taken, how long have you been with your partner and where did you meet?
7. What is your favourite makeup brand of all time?

Tuesday, 13 November 2012


Last weekend was a rare four day weekend for me, due to the Melbourne Cup celebrations. So I thought I would spoil myself with some much needed pampering. 

I thought as it was approaching Summer, it would be great to incorporate a full body scrub into the treatment to get my wintery dry skin summer ready. I also wanted to include a massage as I have been feeling pretty stressed and anxious lately, and had quite a few muscle aches and pains.

I wanted to go to Endota Spa (view their website here) because they are one of the few spas that are conveniently located everywhere, whilst also being luxurious and fancy. Plus I’ve been to them quite a few times before. 

After much deliberation I decided upon the treatment package called the Scrub + Glow, which was a 1 hour 45 minute treatment involving:

- a 10 minute billabong footbath, where they scrub and massage your feet and lower legs (surprisingly amazing!)

- a 50 minute full body scrub with essential oils, herbs and salts. Then oil up your skin and sprinkle the salt mix on top, rubbing it in in little circular motions.

- a 45 minute full body massage including moisturiser application

A sneak peak of the treatment room - with massage table and shower

So how did I find it? 

The billabong footbath sounds average, but it’s actually incredible. It was one of my favourite parts of the treatment. Perhaps you wouldn’t love it if you are ticklish on your feet though. The scrub has left my skin the softest it’s ever felt, and so glowing and healthy looking. The actual process was a bit rough though. I think the salts were quite large for exfoliating purposes, meaning they worked brilliantly to get soft skin, but it wasn’t the most pleasurable application process. Some parts felt almost painful like it was irritating my skin (it wasn’t though!). But I’ve had a scrub before which was incredible and even more pleasurable than a massage, which is what I hoped this scrub would be like. The massage was so relaxing and amazing that I think I fell asleep for a few minutes, which I have never, ever done before!

In this treatment after you’ve had the scrub element, you then have a quick shower in the in room shower/bath to get all the salts off. This just adds to the relaxation and cleaning process.

All in all I would highly recommend this treatment, or a scrub/massage combination that's similar. 

This is the first spa type treatment I’ve ever purchased myself, and I have to say I feel it was totally worth it. I spend $150 on a dress or on a 15 minute specialist medical appointment for instance, so why do I feel so guilty about spending this amount on two hours of pure bliss that makes you feel so much healthier and happier, helps your muscles and aches, revitalises your skin and is extremely relaxing. I feel everyone should try to treat themselves to something like this at least once a year. The benefits are countless and it's just great to take some time for yourself every now and then. 

My tips:
  • I think a half hour massage is too short, as you often spend a lot of a short massage worrying that it’s about to end. The perfect massage length is 45 minutes to an hour, which allows them to do the full body.
  • I’ve learned to ask for a firm pressure massage. As medium is too soft for me, and firm isn’t too hard. So I always opt for the hardest pressure as the masseurs I’ve had have never pressed hard enough for me. And it’s not like I like being beaten into the table or anything, just firm feels like a normal massage.
  • I find getting treatments that are most pleasurable (massage) or have longer term benefits (scrub) to be the best, whereas I find facials for instance aren’t as relaxing because essentially it’s just someone putting on and taking off creams to your face.
  • Drink lots of water, as often you can feel dehydrated during/after a treatment like this.
  • If you come out of a massage feeling a tad achey, you can use a heat pack on the area to help soothe it.
  • Try to choose a spa location away from a shopping centre/mall. The point is to avoid stress and hustle and bustle!

Do you ever have a spa/pampering day? If so what is your favourite treatment/combo to get? 

Thursday, 8 November 2012

DIY Lip Scrub

I went into Lush the other day and whilst I was there I checked out some of their lip scrubs. They look really cute and smell nice and everything but when I found out you could lick the substance off your lips it occurred to me that surely a lip scrub would be extremely simple to make. And unnecessary to spend money on.

So when I had an at home pampering night the other day which included a bath, facial, manicure etc, I decided to try my hand at making a really quick simple lip scrub.

I figured it needed to taste nice and be a good combination of scrub and stickiness to hold it together. 

So I decided to use brown sugar as the scrub, and honey to hold it all together. I filled a small bowl with brown sugar and drizzled honey over it until there was enough to balance out the sugar. Then I mixed it all together.

This is what the mixture looked like

When I was ready to apply the scrub, I just scooped up a little bit on my finger tip and gently rubbed it against my lips. After rubbing it all over my lips thoroughly, I then licked the residue off. Afterwards I slathered my lips with a moisturising lip balm (Burt's Bees Honey Lip Balm - very honey based lip treatment this was!)

What it looked like spread over my skin

I'm amazed it worked so well! I don't recall my lips ever feeling smoother. It got rid of any dry skin and flakiness, and left my lips looking so soft and healthy and feeling so smooth and shiny. Plus lipstick has gone on so much nicer now my lips are so smooth!

Plus the mixture was so yummy I may or may not have just eaten the rest...

This was simple, free, quick, effective and tasty to do. All in all a pleasing result I feel!

Have you ever tried a lip scrub? What are your thoughts on it?

Monday, 5 November 2012

Survey Sunday - November 4th 2012

Hi guys! Happy first week of November! If you read my Christmas Haul post the other day you would have read that I've decided to do Survey Sundays every second Sunday from now on. This will allow me to focus on doing more posts of substance as well as keeping the questions fresh and fun! It's also harder than one might think to continually think up new questions! So Survey Sundays will be held on a fortnightly basis from now on.

So into this fortnight's batch of questions:

1. What foundation do you use? 
I use Maybelline Mineral Power Powder every day as it's just a very natural looking foundation that buffs into your skin making it look flawless and it evens out your skin tone and gives it a matte finish. If I want to spend more time on my makeup or go out at night I use my brand new Chanel Vitalumiere Aqua foundation or my Body Shop Moisture Foundation which actually really deserves a whole lot more credit that it's given. It provides great coverage, a perfect flawless finish and it's really light and not at all cakey.

2. What phone do you own?
My trusty iPhone 4. I've heard that my friends who have iPhone 5s miss their iPhone 4s for reasons like it has a far better battery life, etc. So I'm extra happy with my good old 4 :P

3. What is your favourite milkshake flavour? 
This would probably be a tie between Vanilla or Strawberry. Love both, so long as the vanilla isn't too plain and just milk flavoured, or the strawberry isn't too fake syrupy tasting.

4. Do you have any superstitious tendencies?
Not really. I say "touch wood" and tap on wood sometimes. That's about the extent of it now. 
When I was little I used to have to recite this list of things I was scared about right before I went to bed because I heard that if you think about scary things before bed then you won't have nightmares about them. So just felt like I had to cover my bases you know? :P Also I had to quadruple check my rabbits hutch was shut at night, like I couldn't just trust one check of it. Now I check it twice. Haha I'm so weird. But I can't have my bunny running away can I?! :P

5. Have you ever had braces? 
Yep for two years in year 7-9. Good times.

6. What is your favourite meal to cook/bake? 
Anything sweet! Cupcakes because then you get to decorate them all prettily!

7. Favourite colour to paint your nails? 
Anything pastel or pink. Pastel pinks, corals, blues and greens are my favourites.


Now it's your turn to answer the questions! Just copy and paste the questions into the comment section below.

1. What foundation do you use? 

2. What phone do you own?

3. What is your favourite milkshake flavour? 

4. Do you have any superstitious tendencies?

5. Have you ever had braces? 

6. What is your favourite meal to cook/bake? 

7. Favourite colour to paint your nails? 

Can't wait to read your responses! xx