The first nail-focused beauty blog

“What’s On Your Nails?” with KarlaSugar

What’s On Your Nails? is a series focusing on my fellow beauty bloggers and industry insiders, their favorite nail polish and other hot nail topics.

Fanatics, let’s welcome back WOYN? After a little summer break, the series is back and what better way to kick it off than with “The Arm” herself, Karla from The Next Best Thing to Going Shopping Yourself. If you’re not familiar with Karla’s blog (and you should be) it’s seriously one of the best makeup swatch sites on the web. Karla spends her time testing every new makeup collection to hit the counters and photographs the products on her now-famous arm. She even shows nail polishes on “the arm” using the ingenious technique of polishing on tape (click to see).

For WOYN? Karla broke form by showing us her actual nails, which are totally swatch-worthy. Check out her blingtastic manicure and learn more about her after the jump!


Introduce yourself to the ALU readers. Tell us a little about you and your blog.
My hope is that TNBTTGSY really is the next best thing to going to the makeup counter yourself. I swatch all of something — the latest seasonal collection from Chanel, or permanent MAC lipsticks — on my arm, then take a picture in full sunlight. I also take notes on everything about it, and ask the (very tolerant and supportive) sales
staff a million questions: does it have any special ingredients? Is it limited edition? How much is it? Is it scented? Sparkly? Sticky? Sheer?

What’s your favorite polish?
My “favorite” changes with the season, but at the moment, I’d have to say China Glaze’s Sexagon. I adore holographic polishes (they’re even blingier than glitters, but so much easier to remove), and nobody does them better than China Glaze. The formula is so smooth and perfect — it’s like magic disco balls on my fingers. When I wear it, I’m constantly admiring my nails. I do feel bad recommending a polish that’s no longer easy to find.

What is on your tips and toes right now?
At the moment, it’s Sally Hansen’s Real Royal (it’s one of her Maximum Growth Plus shades). It’s a dark, darkly sparkly brown — so sexy! On my toes are China Glaze Ruby Pumps (which makes me feel like Dorothy).

Do you consider nail polish a beauty necessity or accessory? Why?
On toes, definitely a necessity. My feet just aren’t cute without a splash of color on my toes. I prefer to have painted fingernails; a good manicure protects my nails from incidental damage and/or impulsive trimming — but I’m not ashamed to go out without it.

How many bottles of nail polish do you own?
Um. 50. But I’d like to mention that before I started reading polish blogs, that answer was 4. Part of the dramatic increase is attributable to my not knowing there were brands other than OPI (and OPI has gotten steep!). But now that I’ve found you, Zoya, Barielle, China Glaze, and Sally Hansen, I want to shout your names from the rooftops. A great formula is everything.

How often do you change your nail polish?
Since discovering Zoya’s Anchor and Armor base coats and top coats, I can go 5 days on fingers (miracle! This has made such a difference in my desire to paint my nails). I’m lazy, so I’ll keep my toenail polish for 3 weeks at a time.

Do you have a favorite nail treatment you think my readers should know about? Why is it so fab?
If they don’t already own a buffing block (and what ALU reader doesn’t own a buffing block?), it’s a lifesaver. I hadn’t realized there was such a quick-and-easy solution for toenail ridges, or modest post-polish staining — or stopping a peeling nail in its tracks.

What do you think will be the big nail trend for fall?
I’m personally loving dark fingernails. Not only does it make me feel like a badass, but it makes my sometimes-too-short nails look intentional and chic. And there are so many choices! Black, brown, purple, blue, green — I think there are great options for every skintone.

What nail trend do you wish would go away?
I know everybody’s mad about matte — and I’ve seen some very cool textural nail art done with it. But matteness looks sad on my nails (I crave the shiny). I only want it to go away so polish companies can devote their full attention to my favorite shades.

What is the biggest nail faux pas that women make?
Nothing much bothers me, except when women in professional environments have incredibly (more than 50%) chipped polish. You can’t think that people don’t notice your nails: it’s part of your whole presentation.

Thanks a million for sharing your polish love with us Karla! Fanatics make sure you stop by The Next Best Thing to Going Shopping Yourself to check out the newest product launches.

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There Are 10 Brilliant Comments

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  1. KrystalBall says:

    LOL I was exactly the same way. Before I started reading polish blogs and really striving to stop biting my nails, I had five bottles of polish. Now it's around 40-50. If I had more money, that number would be seriously larger! :P

  2. Mary says:

    oh my gosh! i'm wearing real royal right now too!

  3. igswonderworld says:

    @KarlaSugar & @KrystalBall: wow I thought I really was the only one mad enough to buy soo many nail polishes while I was still in the habit of biting my nails. After discovering Michelle and other lovely nail polish lovers, I'm now a proud polish addict and owner of long, healthy and – hopefully one day – rock hard nails! Thanks a million ladies!

  4. Mama Fashionista says:

    i'm wearing real royal n my toes rite now! i always thought it was more of a purple than brown (thus the royal name), but whatevs!

    xoxo

    http://mama-fashionista.blogspot.com

  5. nailinglife says:

    Ooh, wow! I remember way before I started blogging, trying to grow my nails then biting them again. I still bought a lot of nail color (back then I bought a LOT of OPI while their prices were still a dollar less than they are now–I still have the $7.50 price tag on my Lincoln Park After Dark bottle), but I never really counted to see how much polish I had. I even used artificial nail covers just to have polish on my fingernails. Now my nails are growing out pretty nicely and I have 119 bottles of polish. And I'm planning on getting even more to inflate my collection even more.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Eek!
    Please be careful when using a buffer- even the softest buffers are a grade of sandpaper. You should not buff your nails more than twice per growth cycle. (That means the whole nail needs to grow from the bottom up to the top of the finger.)
    Even gentle buffing removes many many microscopic layers of nail plate. The first few times you will be thrilled – then you will wonder why your nails are suddenly more peel-y than ever, soft and tearing at the sidewalls.
    Feel free to use the soft white plastic side of the buffer any time you like to bring the shine back, but be warned about that grey and black side!
    A better way to remove stains is whitening toothpaste and an old toothbrush or even soaking nails in lemon juice for 3 minutes.
    xoxoNonie C.

  7. All Lacquered Up says:

    KrystalBall & Igswonderworld – The enabling power of blogs/message boards is dangerous for the wallet.

    Mary & Mama Fashionista – Sounds like I need to get my hands on Real Royal ASAP!

    Nailinglife – Did you use any type of strengthener to help they grow?

    Anon (Nonie) – Thank you for your comment. I'm not a big fan of buffers myself. I use them sparingly, as needed. Thanks for the tips on removing stains.

    Another idea – soak in denture cleaner

  8. nailinglife says:

    I'm using Nailtiques Formula 2 right now for peeling, splitting, and weak nails of which mine are all three. That and a combination of willpower and an old bottle of NutraNail Super Growth is helping. Well, until I stopped using the Nailtiques after about three or so weeks because I didn't feel like I needed it any longer. Now I have shortened thumb and pinky nails on my right hand and an ugly nub for a ring nail on my left hand since they all split. This must be some serious punishment I'm receiving for that mistake.

  9. Laura says:

    This post made me reach for my holos! Great interview!

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