Manicure Madness!

You know how I do. I'm a geek by nature and once I get into a hobby I dive head first and don't stop. Come to find out that nail polish is a certified hobby and as with any hobby there are avid enthusiasts. I'm not talking about ladies who like to go to the salon, get acrylic tips or a pedi. I'm speaking of women who enjoy collecting nail polish, searching for hard-to-find colors, trying to "catch 'em all". In this subculture the focus is on the DIY manicure, keeping nails healthy, doing one's own designs by freehand or with stamping. There are countless blogs devoted to new collections and individual polishes that feature swatches, reviews and tutorials. Well, seems at though I am now one of those fanatics.

I won't even get into how many bottles of polish I've acquired in a relatively short period of time, but my collection now encompasses the full ROYGIBV spectrum. Since I've seemed to run out of colors to buy and not wanting to purchase duplicate shades, I'm now focusing on different finishes:

- dull finishes with no shine, but very rich in color
Duochromes - polishes that show two (or more in a multichrome) colors depending on how the light hits it, for example it could be a purple finish, upon angling the nail a strong blue color will show
Jellies - shiny and translucent shades, with a squishy-looking finish
Holos - these are really interesting, metallics with almost a 3D effect, showing the full spectrum of the rainbow within the glitter when the nails are angled.

Also, unique glitters and independent specialty polishes and themed collections. China Glaze just released its much-anticipated line based on The Hunger Games books/movie. OPI has a Spiderman inspired line coming out in a few months (you think this geek isn't getting one or two of those?).

Nail polish can be some serious business. Check out Lynnderella's Connect the Dots or Chanel Peridot on E-bay and you'll see how much money women are willing to spend on a single bottle of polish. Nerd Laquer on Etsy, who sells cool colors named for every aspect of sci-fi geekery you can think of, recently updated her shop and sold 1,500 bottles in 18 hours ($10+ a pop, you do the math). Stocks of Lynnderella polishes have been known to sell out in minutes with all kinds of drama surrounding when and how to buy these gems. Heck, I've been tempted to head to Michael's and try to start my own line.

I've found that this new love of mine can be, as with any hobby, as expensive or inexpensive as you'd like. I buy lower end lines that can be found at various drugstores with coupons, during sales, at online discount stores that often have selections at greatly reduced prices. Those expensive independent lines often sell mini bottles at a fraction of the price of a full size, so I've gone that route as well.

Women from all walks of life, mothers (who's hands are in water all can be done), doctors, office workers, even truck drivers have been drawn to this sparkly nail craze. For most it's not just an exercise in vanity, it is just as much about the fun of the hunt, the admiration of color, the expression of a bit of art on the hands and much needed pampering and relaxation after a crazy day. Since I'd been neglecting the caring of me for quite sometime, it's a refresing and fun addition to my roster of hobbies. Nope, knitting and crocheting isn't going anywhere (plus, the combo of knitting and pretty nails is a fierce one)!

Here are some of my latest manicures. You know what I might get into next? Photography. These photos leave much to be desired.

Sinful Colors Mint Apple, with a poor attempt at Konad stamping on my accent nail

Essie Vintage Wine with NerdLacquer's Data Squirrel on the accent nail. By the way, I'm a huge fan of the accent nail. It seems to be a bit more work/age friendly, a way to wear a glitter-tastic color without going overboard.

China Glaze Techno Teal from the Tron-inspired Tronica line (geek alert!). This is actually a holo polish, a more subdued version though. Hopefully you can see that scattering of rainbow glitter from this pic.l

China Glaze Fast Track from the Hunger Games line. Another themed polish collection.

With the sheer amount of polish now in my collection, my color changes will be every three to four days so there will be more many more future manicure posts to go with the knitting and reading ones!