Lou-Lou-Louche

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What’s your vice? My vices are painting my nails (somewhat messily at times), finding comfort in the bubbles of a diet coke and hoarding lotions and potions of all sorts on my make up counter. I guess I could open a spa and teahouse from my room, there’s enough soap and varieties of herbal tea in here to last a lifetime (…or at least a couple of years).

I’m not doing anything wildly exciting at the moment, just preparing for exams. Hence the pictures of nails on my blog instead of wild tales of adventure and discovery. However, it’s still possible to find delight in little things. This morning I went to the library at ridiculous o’clock in the morning (around five am) with a pal, and then we watched the sun rise whilst sat on a gnarled tree in a nearby wood. We didn’t have a camera, but imagine if you will, two students surrounded by bluebells and library books scattered across a carpet of greenery…

We walked back through the Botanic Gardens, stopping en route by a large pond near the Psychology building to look at baby tadpoles wriggling in the shallows. It was such a lovely start to the day…

Magpie Nails

Today, I present to you a photo of the Glitter polishes from the OPI Oz collection. I initially wanted to buy them from Duty free in the airport but there ended up being no time in between my flights. When I had got to Durham, the only scrap of collection left was one bottle of the Liquid Sand polish as the glitters had sold out… My poor little bottle alone as all her pals had deserted her*… so I resorted to ASOS, which gave me a student discount. Thank you ASOS.

When these colours are worn, it looks as if a Unicorn has exploded all over my nails. Not the easiest look to pull off, but glittery nails do make me smile every time they catch the light. My two favourites are “Lights of Emerald City” and “What Wizardry is this?… the latter is is a liquid sand polish and I am impressed with the textured effect. In my opinion, it’s a lot more stylish and wearable than the liquid sand polishes featured in the ‘Mariah Carey’ collection.

Congratulations if you have read this far, I know not everyone likes polish, but I do like to document what I’ve bought from time to time! I didn’t buy any of the OZ ‘Soft Shades’ because none of them overly appealed to me, however the glitters work well over OPI Bubblebath and OPI Don’t Pretzel My Buttons.

*Personifying the bottle reminds me of a story I wrote once with my Dad about a lemonade bottle who was left alone on a skip and longed to be recycled. Green conscious from a young age or too many reruns of “The Brave Little Toaster”? You tell me!

Les Ongles d’une James Bond Girl!

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My favourite manicure of the moment! This is OPI Man with the Golden Gun (18k gold flecked top coat) layered over OPI Bastille my Heart (a glamorous burgundy colour from the OPI French Collection). Maroon, Burgundy and in particular, Oxblood, have been a big trend during this winter period… I’m not entirely sure how to differentiate exactly between the shades in this spectrum of deep reds, but I have noticed that these colours have been everywhere in the past few months! They have also been gradually infiltrating my wardrobe, starting with the purchase of a burgundy peplum coat in September. I can now count  leggings, tops, socks, ribbons and oversized hair bows amongst my burgundy cachet, although they are not to be worn all at once, of course! Call the colour what you will,  it has clearly been the shade of the season  – I reckon it’s been the colour most worn in lecture theatres across the country throughout September-Feburary 2012-13. I don’t think I’ve ever noticed a colour trend being so popular before.  Students swanning around nonchalantly in burgundy chinos and artfully draped scarves, have meant that I am greeted each morning by a veritable sea of these rich hues on my walks around the city…

Back to the manicure!

OPI Bastille my Heart is a great way of adding an on trend accent to your outfit without blending into the crowd too much… It also feels luxuriously smooth if you run the fingers of one hand along the nails of the other hand. I know that textured nails are in, and I love glitter polishes (possibly too much), but you can’t beat a smooth and sophisticated finish. I’m glad that it is not a limited edition polish because I will definitely be replacing it when I reach the end of my bottle! If I had to describe this manicure, I would say that it is a perfect blend of two OPI collections – the French collection and James Bond Skyfall collection – culminating in a decadent look, reminiscent of the tones of a rich french wine. When peppered with gold flakes, you are left with a warm look which will brighten up the cold and drab early months of the year!

Starry Night Nails

The colours of the Durham sky fading from day into night have been really beautiful recently – a mix of navy blue shades. As a student, it is sometimes easy to forget your surroundings and take them for granted. However, a week ago I was walking home to college down Kingsgate Bridge when I paused to look over my shoulder and saw the cathedral bathed in golden lamplight against an ethereal blue sky. I had to stop and take a photo. Durham Cathedral was voted the nation’s best loved building in 2001 and has since been used as a backdrop for scenes from the Harry Potter films. It is not difficult to see why it is such a convincing setting for a story of magic and wizardry.

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The colours of the sky reminded me of one of my favourite paintings – Vincent Van Gogh’s ‘The Starry Night’. It is a painting that I studied during my art lessons in school , I remember being entranced by the rich use of colour and swirling brushstrokes. In October 2011, my Aunt and Uncle took me to visit the Auberge in Auvers-sur-Oise where Van Gogh spent the last of his days – it proved to be an extremely interesting visit and certainly rejuvenated my love for the brilliant paintings of the troubled Van Gogh.

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It was with this colour scheme in mind that I repainted my chipped nail varnish with swirls of blue and purple glitter and flecks of gold. Here’s to you, Van Gogh!

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