The first nail-focused beauty blog


ALU NYFW NOTD Challenge – SS 2011 Day 1

That’s right Fanatics.  I’m attempting my bi-annual NYFW NOTD Challenge.  I’m challenging myself to change my nail color every day of Fashion Week no matter how tired and worn out I am.

NOTD Challenge lesson learned… DON’T apply nail polish less than hour before you leave for the airport. Why? Because no matter how quick drying your top coat is, you’re going to wreck yourself. Case in point, moi!

I have this travel ritual. I never sleep the night before a trip. I’m always up doing laundry, packing, clearing out the DVR, etc. Totally random stuff including giving myself a manicure. In a perfect world I would be more organized but I’m always so afraid I’ll forget something that I stay up all night crossing every “t” and dotting every “i” on my packing list.

That pretty much sums up my Wednesday night as I prepared for my early morning flight to NYC. Usually I do my manicure way earlier in the evening so it’s set and dry by the time I leave but this time, not so much. I thought an hour would be good enough but even using my beloved Olan Quick & Slick top coat I ended up eff’ing up my manicure with Rescue Beauty Lounge Anne before I even got to the airport. Picking up my bag, that barely weighed in under 50 lbs, I completely biffed the nails on my left hand. UGH! An entire day spent backstage and with other editors having them look at my janky nails. Good times!


I mean, just look at that mess. Embarrassing! Fortunately I didn’t have a ton on my plate yesterday. Just two shows, nothing major, and I hid my left hand from the world. The sucky part was that I wore Anne knowing I’d be seeing Ji from RBL and it’s a good thing she sat to my right since that hand still looked flawless! All I can say is that I was very happy to come back to my room with an excuse for a polish change.

Rescue Beauty Lounge Anne goes on sale at later this month for $18/bottle. Pre-orders will ship out then as well.

FYI, this shot isn’t a great color representation. This is more for show & tell purposes. To see Anne in all her glory check out my RBL Fall 2010 review.

CND Monday – Day 5 of the ALU NYFW NOTD Challenge

alu-cnd-monday-green-scene-cream-washed Welcome to CND Monday, a regular series here on ALU. Each week I’ll be sharing a new layering combination from CND Colour & Effects to show you the versatility and creativity of the line.

With the exception of my unworn bottle of MAC Studded, the new matte polish from the Riveting collection, I actually completed my NYFW NOTD Challenge this season.  I ended up getting something top secret and very special applied to my nails on Day 6 so that nixed my planned MAC mani.  I’ll tell you about soon but in the meantime let’s talk about Day 5.

As I mentioned at the beginning of the challenge I planned out my color according to the brand I’d be seeing that day.  Since CND worked on 20+ shows throughout the week, every day could have been CND day but I chose Tuesday since they were working with The Blonds that night.  The Blonds are known for their outlandish designs and over-the-top nail looks so if there was a day that green polish was in order, it was Tuesday.

I could have just thrown on a couple of coats of Green Scene and called it a day but I wanted something a bit different.  I chose to create my own version of a Jade gemstone using Cream Washed.  Check out my look after the jump!

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ALU NYFW NOTD Challenge – FW 2010 Day 4

sally-hansen-notd Last Monday was a big day for me at NYFW. Not only did I run myself ragged covering like 6 or 7 shows in a day but I was invited to sit front row at the Tracy Reese runway show at the tents.  Can you even?  I nearly died inside when I found out.I’ve been to shows in past seasons and once I was even pulled to the front row as a seat filler at an off-site show.  But this was totally different.  I love Tracy Reese’s designs and her show is always one of my faves.  Plus she draws some great celebs each season and being a total Entertainment Weekly/E! type of girl, my inner celeb stalker was thrilled.

Of course, I had to plan out not only what I would wear but my nail color.  Since Sally Hansen partners with Tracy Reese each season, a color from their new Complete Salon Manicure line was a natural choice.  But with so many colors in the line, which one do I bring?  Color of the moment and Chanel Particuliere doppelganger Commander In Chic?  A fun metallic like Pedal To The Metal?  A very “me” blue or green?  See what color I chose after the jump along with some pics from my front row vantage point and my web celeb encounter.

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ALU NYFW NOTD Challenge – FW 2010 Day 3

There is no rest for the weary at Fashion Week and while most people were enjoying their Sunday morning in bed, I was up with the roosters (like there’s farm life in NYC) to head backstage at Lela Rose. There are a few shows that I can’t miss each season and Lela Rose is one of them. Why? Because the dream team of Ted Gibson and Deborah Lippmann is more than enough reason to get out of bed in the morning. Add in Tina Turnbow for Tarte and Supermodel Carol Alt with her Raw Essentials skincare line and well, can life get any better? Seriously, there was so much magic in that room, I could barely handle it.  I spoke with Carol for over 15 minutes and couldn’t stop myself from going gaga inside over how fabulous she looks.  Total fan girl moment!

Of course I’ll spill the deets on the backstage action with you later but let’s get back on track with the nails. I had this whole plan set in motion about how I would plot out my polish based on who I’d be seeing that day.  Sally Hansen for the Tracey Reese show, China Glaze for Charlotte Ronson, etc.  Though I made the mistake of telling Deb’s publicist that I would be wearing Marquee Moon on Sunday. So even though I woke up with a massive hangover from being out WAY too late Saturday night, I somehow managed to drag my happy ass out of bed extra early for a polish change.  It’s a good thing I did because she totally checked up on me!

I’ve showed you Marquee Moon before so you know about its origins but in case you need a refresher, this is the shade Deb created with sisters Kate and Laura Mulleavy the brains behind Rodarte.  It’s a silver metallic base with hexagonal silver sequins that look like tiny mirrors on the nail.

The whole point of Marquee Moon is to have a perfectly imperfect manicure.  It’s not about getting the same number of sequins on each nail.  If some end up with no sequins, so be it.  Which actually makes this an ideal last minute manicure choice.  You can just slap it on and not worry about the end result. If you biff it, the world isn’t going to end.

BTW am I the only person one the planet still saying “biff” because everyone who’s heard me use that word this week is all, “aww, ‘biff’ I haven’t heard that in forever.”  Well, I’m bringing it back people!


Marquee Moon retails for $16/ea and can be purchased online from or You can also pick up Deb’s polish at a Nordstrom near you.

ps I hear that Badgley Mischka selected this shade for their runway show this morning.  That there was a whole Avatar theme happening.  Can’t wait to see pics from the show!

Disclosure: A product sample was furnished to me Deborah Lippmann. For more information view my Disclosure Policy.

ALU NYFW NOTD Challenge – FW 2010 Day 2

By on February 16, 2010
in NARS, NOTD, NY Fashion Week F/W 10, Purple with 18 Comments

Day 2 of my NYFW experience started relatively late (noon). Knowing my usual travel patterns, I purposely left Saturday morning free so I could sleep in and catch up on the rest I missed while packing for NYC.

Since I had time for a full manicure (no matte polish needed today), I opted for NARS Purple Rain from the Spring collection that is inspired by Catherine Deneuve’s role as Lucille in La Chamade.  You know how I love a purple and I have to say this is one of the best colors NARS has put out in a while.

When I first saw the promo pic I thought there was no way this polish could live up to it.  We all know the story, vibrant under flash, almost black everywhere else.  I’m happy to say that Purple Rain surpassed my expectations.  Is it the blue-based purple we were teased with on their site?  No, it’s more of a red-grape but the metallic shimmer really gives it something special.  Literally everyone who looked at my nails that day asked about the polish and when I say everyone I mean other brands too.

FYI, being in NYC is so outside my normal swatching element that it’s throwing me off my game in terms of photography so know that this pic was taken in my hotel bathroom meaning it’s not 100% accurate.

NARS Purple Rain retails for $16/ea and is currently out of stock on the NARS website but I found it online at and  You can also check with your local NARS counters and Sephora stores.

What’s on your nails today?  Have you checked out Purple Rain yet?  Is purple still in fashion or totally out?

Disclosure: A product sample was furnished to me by NARS.  For more information view my Disclosure Policy.

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