a geeky nail artist with a crafting streak and an obsession with all things beauty

What's new?

My Top 7 Influencer Websites

My Top 7 Influencer Websites

It took me ages to sift through the giant haystack of influencer sites out there and I want to share some of my favorite websites with you today!

How to find Korean sheet mask bargains online

How to find Korean sheet mask bargains online

I’m showing you where to buy the cheapest places to buy Korean skin care and beauty products online!

Starting a beauty blog: Things I wish I knew

Starting a beauty blog: Things I wish I knew

To be fair, when I first started publishing my musings online I was too young to think about making a serious impression in the blogosphere.

I was mainly writing to kill time, unlike today where I write to share my experiences in the beauty world and aim to make a career out of it someday! I would have never imagined I’d still be actively writing on my little slice of the internet, but here I am still going strong! If I could turn back time, here are the tips I would give myself for starting a beauty blog.

Starting a beauty blog

Things I wish I knew back then

Quality over quantity will win every time! I used to have a terrible habit of publishing scraggly 150-word posts just to get something new on the site. I wish I could back and smack myself up the head and sink my time into meatier posts.

It is far better to spend a few days creating one polished article that will benefit readers for months or even years than it is to focus on pumping out new, but unsubstantial posts every day.

Evergreen Beauty Blog posts


You may have heard the term “evergreen post” thrown around in the writing community. This is a timeless post that you’ve spent time polishing, editing, and perfecting into something readers can go back to time and time again. I don’t have nearly as many of these as I’d like to, so this is a bit of the pot calling the kettle black.
You’ll also want to re-visit your posts from time to time to make sure they are still relevant and tweak things as needed. In my opinion, even 2-3 evergreen posts are immensely better than 15 mini-posts.

Starting a beauty blog with SEO

Learning the basics of SEO

I’ve found that keeping up with the latest tricks to boost your site’s SEO ranking is a lot like herding cats. I rely on two sources to keep me up to date on the ever-changing topic of SEO: bblogger Facebook groups and the channel Income School over on Youtube. Joining a blogging community can really help out when first starting up. I’m a big fan of Moz’s articles on the subject as well, or you can always look into SEO consulting services.

A good idea when starting your beauty blog for SEO purposes is to put your website into local citations and business listings.

Join a blogging community

Connecting with other bloggers who are most likely running into the same problems as yourself will spare you from researching the same issue that 50+ people have already experienced, resolved, and shared online. It’s also interesting to see what new tips and tricks group members post so you can experiment with your site and discover what works best for you. Two all time favorite FB groups that I’ve gotten the most support and help from are Girlcrush Collective and Boss Girl Bloggers.

Last but not least, here’s a final round of some quick and easy essential steps to take before launching your blog.

  • Have contact info easily available
  • Test your site’s template to ensure it’s mobile friendly
  • Create a privacy policy! Here’s a crash course I used.
  • Save a backup of your website before ever tinkering with your template! (Learned this one the hard way… don’t follow in my steps!)
I Dew Care Disco Kitten

I Dew Care Disco Kitten

Disco Kitten Illuminating Peel-Off Mask I actually bought this mask by accident to be perfectly honest! I’ve been trying to track down a tub of Space Kitten for eons, but for some reason, it’s constantly out of stock at my local beauty store. On my last visit a […]

Jack o’ Lantern Nails w/ Born Pretty

Jack o’ Lantern Nails w/ Born Pretty

First Halloween nails of the year! October is simply not long enough to satisfy my immense craving for Halloween nail art so I’m getting a head start this year! If stores are going to shove Christmas crap in my face this early in the year, I […]

How to do gel nails at home

How to do gel nails at home

Hello lovelies!

I’ve been painting gel nails at home for over five years and after seeing all of your comments on my DIY gel nail kit giveaway, I realized that a surprising amount of people find the idea of doing gel nails too daunting.
So this will be a short crash course in how I do my gels! Hopefully, this will help DIY gels seem a bit less intimidating!

This post contains affiliate links; if you snag a deal through my link it will send some spare change my way to keep this slice of the internet up and running.

Gel nails at home

Step one to gel nails

You’ll start the same way as any manicure, make sure your nails are clean, filed, and shaped, and make sure to remove all old polish.  Lightly buff away the shine on your nails, this will create a slightly rough surface for the gel to bond to. Be careful not to go crazy buffing, if you over buff it can weaken your nails and lead to breaks!

Dehydrate nails for gel polish

Even with bare nails, you will still want to wipe them down with either pure acetone or rubbing alcohol. This will remove any oils from the nail and help the gel adhere better. Many brands sell products to “cleanse” the nail before applying gel polish, but acetone works just as well and it’s much cheaper!

Applying the gel base coat

You’ll start with a thin coat of base coat and then cure it for around 30 seconds using your LED or UV lamp. The Born Pretty basecoat I’m giving away only needs 30 seconds of cure time, but this greatly varies depending on what brand you’re using. You should always look over the packaging to see what length of time the brand recommends. Overcuring the polish won’t hurt the manicure, but if you under cure and move forward with wet polish it can cause the gel to peel off prematurely. 

Curing gel nails with lamp.

Applying the gel color

Now that your base coat is cured you can start applying the gel color! Keep in mind that after you cure the polish you won’t be able to clean up smudges of polish from your cuticles or skin. Be sure that everything looks perfect before moving forward to curing.

Keep your coats on the thin side, if the polish is laid down too thickly it will not cure properly. The gels I’ve used from Born Pretty only take 45 seconds to cure, but again this varies from brand to brand. Most polishes will take 2-3 coats to reach full opacity, and you will need to cure between every coat.

DIY Gel Nails at Home

Troubleshooting gel polish issues

You might find run into some polishes that shrink back from the cuticles and the sides of your nails after curing. If you run into a polish like this you can prevent shrinkage by flash curing each nail for 5-10 seconds. If you flash cure each nail it will hold the polish in place so that when you’re ready to fully cure the entire hand the polish can’t shrink away from the edges.

Topcoat and last touches

After applying the top coat, you will cure your nails one last time. I’ve been using a no-wipe topcoat from Born Pretty, but with most top coats you will need to wipe off a tacky layer from the gel. You can use rubbing alcohol for this step, but do not use acetone! You will need to use a lint-free wipe or a paper towel to avoid getting fibers stuck to the nail. Use a different part of the wipe to clean each nail, if you use the same portion more than once it can cause the gel to appear dull.

Come and enter my DIY gel nail kit giveaway before you leave!

DIY Coffee Body Scrub

DIY Coffee Body Scrub

Hello lovelies! I just reviewed the DIY beauty book Fresh & Pure by Jules Aron, and as promised I’m dishing all the details on my first creation using one of the recipes. I’m a coffee addict, so of course I whipped up an amazing batch of […]

DIY gel nail kit giveaway

DIY gel nail kit giveaway

Hey Y’all! I’ve been itching to put together a beginner’s gel nail kit giveaway for ages. I’m known around my office as the lady with a different eye-catching nail art design every other day so it’s safe to say I’m the go-to gal in the […]

Fresh & Pure: DIY Beauty Balms, & Cleanser Recipes

Fresh & Pure: DIY Beauty Balms, & Cleanser Recipes

Hello lovelies!

I finally kicked my naughty habit of zoning out while endlessly scrolling on my phone during breaks at the office. I never get anything done, and considering I’m typing on a computer my entire shift it’d be beneficial to get away from a screen even just for a little while.

Monthly Book Picks

This post contains affiliate links; if you snag a deal through my link it will send some spare change my way to keep this slice of the internet up and running.

These are three of my favorite books that I’ve read over this past month. First up is Fresh & Pure by Jules Aron. I’ve always wanted to dabble in making face masks and balms from scratch, and this volume is jam-packed in simple but powerful DIY recipes!

Book Pile Loose Tea

What I’m Reading

Fresh & Pure has everything from face masks, lotions, cleansers, and hair care recipes. There is also a nifty guide detailing the properties all the ingredients used throughout the book so you can get a good grasp on the benefits of the balms you’re creating. I especially found the section on different oils helpful. It’s hard to keep track of what oil gives what benefit and is best for what skin type.

I still have to track down some missing ingredients before I can get cracking on these recipes. In the meantime, the ingredient guide will definitely be useful to reference while writing beauty reviews! I’ve noticed that beauty brands tend to use the same buzzwords in their product claims without any bearing on what the ingredients can actually do. I end up usually fact-checking the individual ingredient’s benefits before believing any claims a brand may tout.

Fresh and Pure Book Review

Next up is: Elmet by Fiona Mozley

Elmet is about a small solitary family roughing it in the woods of modern-day Yorkshire. I enjoyed this one, but I found the description rather misleading. The brunt of the novel just detailed the day to day life of the children, which was interesting but anti-climatic.

“The family thought the little house they had made themselves in Elmet, a corner of Yorkshire, was theirs, that their peaceful, self-sufficient life was safe. Cathy and Daniel roamed the woods freely living outside all conventions. Their father built things and hunted, working with his hands; sometimes he would disappear, forced to do secret, brutal work for money, but to them, he was a gentle protector.

Narrated by Daniel after a catastrophic event has occurred, Elmet mesmerizes even as it becomes clear the family’s solitary idyll will not last. When a local landowner shows up on their doorstep, their precarious existence is threatened, their innocence lost. Daddy and Cathy, both of them fierce, strong, and unyielding, set out to protect themselves and their neighbors, putting into motion a chain of events that can only end in violence.”

Elmet Book Review

The Clockwork Dynasty by Daniel Wilson

This is one of the best books I’ve picked up all year. It’s been quite a while since I’ve been tempted to just sit down all day and zip through a book. This is quite the page-turner!

 

When a young anthropologist specializing in ancient technology uncovers a terrible secret concealed in the workings of a three-hundred-year-old mechanical doll, she is thrown into a hidden world that lurks just under the surface of our own. With her career and her life at stake, June Stefanov will ally with a remarkable traveler who exposes her to a reality she never imagined, as they embark on an around-the-world adventure and discover breathtaking secrets of the past…

Clockwork Dynasty

 

Read any good books lately? My to-read list is growing slim, I’d love to get some recommendations!

A Beginner’s Guide: Picking the Perfect Face Mask

A Beginner’s Guide: Picking the Perfect Face Mask

Hi there! If you knew how many face masks I’ve stuffed in my beauty drawer you would think a whole pack of skincare fanatics lived in my little apartment, but you’d be wrong, there’s just little old me! I’ve never understood those people who can’t […]