Ruby Wing Color Changing Nail Polishes

Color Club is one of my favorite nail polishes, as they’re cruelty-free and vegan. They can be a bit hard to find in stores, but they’re widely available from online beauty suppliers. Usually they’re a steal at around $3-4, but some retailers demand the full price of $8. Look around and you can save a bundle.

In addition to their regular polishes, they also have a line of color-changing polishes called Ruby Wing. The polish changes colors in sunlight, much like DelSol (which is also cruelty-free). Ruby Wing polishes are usually $10, though I have seen occasional promos at $8.

I live in a very sunny climate, so these are year-rounders for me. For those of you in places with weaker sun, they may or may not be as much fun. I just felt like swatching and testing some of my stash to see what I had, and if it was still good. I have had these for a while, and they were stored in less-than optimal conditions since my place is pretty warm. Leaving the aircon on all the time would put me in the poorhouse, so they’ve been exposed to temperatures over 30C.

Most of the polishes still changed color very well. A couple seemed to have turned into duds and didn’t show any color change at all, which happened with my DelSol polishes as well. So you might want to use your color-change polishes within a year or so of purchase. The application was very good, not really distinguishable from regular polish. They do tend to be a bit on the thick side, but not substantially.

Left to Right: Horizon (red and was supposed to change to maroon),  Lagoon, Wildflowers, Birdie, Tide, Moonstone, Gypsy, Mystic (minimal change), Fate (minimal change),  Eclipse (minimal change), Sweet Rose, Sand Dunes, Myth and Festival.

Ruby Wing COllage

The most dramatic changes are with the lighter colors and the glitters. I do want to reiterate that my stash is older and has not been stored in a cool place as the manufacturer suggests, so the dud colors are probably more my bad than Ruby Wing’s!

I admit I’m a color junkie and a big kid, so I enjoy the color changing shades. I suppose it’s not the most grown-up thing, but I think they’re a lot of fun- especially for a pedicure on a beach holiday. If loving color is wrong, I don’t want to be right! ;)

In totally unrelated news, I am hitting the road for Bhutan in a couple days! It’s a tiny country tucked in the Himalayas, and the Mr. and I have wanted to go for a long time. I don’t expect to see any nail-related stuff up in the Himalayan wilderness, but I hope to have some gorgeous mountain pictures to show you upon my return. After that, we’ll be back to our regularly scheduled nail programming.


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Little Things That Make Me Happy, Part 1

I am a pretty simple person at heart. I don’t need a lot of entertainment or stuff, though I do spend a lot of time and money on travelling. It’s usually little things that make me happy.

Here’s one:

Almost every commercially available Konad stamping color, in rainbow order! (Excuse the random hot pink between the red and the yellow, it looked orange in the bottle.)


Close up.


I use a lot of other polishes for stamping too. Metallics work well. I have been disappointed in Konad’s metallics, which are rather poor. I have tried some other brands of stamping polish, like MoYou and Born Pretty, but haven’t been really impressed. Almost any polish which is opaque in one coat can be used for stamping, but you may have to work more quickly with those than with dedicated stamping polish.

Konad has also come up short on topcoats. When I try their topcoat, it smudges almost every time. I have much better luck with Seche Vite or other standard topcoats. The main thing is not to drag the brush over the nail,  it’s more like a quick pressing it on with a very light touch. I do mine in three strokes- down the middle, then one on each side. If the brush drags at all, it will smudge the design, even if it’s dried.

So, a rainbow of swatches is one of my little pleasures. Even as a kid, I always had to have the biggest box of crayons and carefully arranged them in rainbow order.  I guess I was a color junkie from a young age. ;)

Other things that have made me happy lately:

  1. Tiny jackfruits growing on trees in my neighborbood. They will grow to be comically large, but are adorable when they’re just starting off and are the size of a ping pong ball.
  2. Burning a pumpkin scented candle because it’s almost October, even though that means nothing here as it’s seasonless. I still remember the feeling of a crisp autumn day.
  3. Finding a bunch of old photos (actual print ones!) of me and the Mr. taken sometime during the 90s. Bad clothes, bad hair…but no wrinkles. Hmm. Life is all about tradeoffs, right?
  4. Tiny ribcages!


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Anyone Still Here?

Hello everyone! It’s been another period of inactivity here on my blog. 2015 has not really been my year as I was sidelined with 1) the flu, 2) pneumonia and 3) whooping cough all in a row. Whooping cough led to several cracked ribs. It did take me several months to get over all of those, and to be honest, I probably took longer to recover than I should have because I did try to paint nails while I was still not well. I did wear a painter’s mask (the lovely industrial sort with the hot pink air filters) but that also triggered bouts of coughing. So all in all, I was pretty much out of commission from March to end of July. I spend July and the beginning of August trying to keep up with some editorial work and leftover custom order (thank you guys for working with me on the time frame and being so understanding!).

Do take good care of your lungs. My pneumonia/whooping cough was not caused by chemical exposure, but long-term use of glitters, pigments and many chemicals found in acrylic and nail polish can cause similar issues. Always wear your mask and make sure your workspace is well ventilated. If you can’t breathe, you can’t do anything. Even simple tasks like a slow walk took twice as long and triggered major coughing fits. I was almost going out of my mind after several months. A lifetime of this would be incredibly difficult. Love your lungs and treat them right!

Public service announcement aside, it’s been just now that I’m getting caught up on the backlog and just starting to roll out some seasonal designs. Autumn is my favorite season, hands down, and it’s been fun just to try out some festive fall looks. It’s been months since I painted anything just for fun. It feels really good just to get the creative juices flowing again after being sidelined. Don’t get me wrong- I love production and editorial work, but that’s more pressure than just letting my imagination and paintbrushes go crazy. :)

I’ll also be headed to Japan in November for the 2015 Nail Expo. We’ll see what this year has to bring us! Japanese nails and fashion in general have gotten more conservative in the last several years, so I hope we’re swinging back towards wild and wonderful soon. If I see any more flower nails (a Japanese fave no matter what the theme), I’m going to scream. The contest themes for the last two years were ‘Adult Punk’ and ‘Fresh Flesh.’ Not flowery at all, yet there were way too many entries with butterflies and cutey pastel florals. People just ignore the theme and paint what they normally do. Flowers galore. Ugh. But we’ll see what this year has to offer.

Here’s some of what I’ve been doing:

autumn 2015 .nails by nevertoomuchglitter

It’s on the early side for Halloween, but if you’d like any nails from my shop, please order by the first week of October.

That’s all for now, thanks to everyone for still stopping by despite my long break from posting.

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Pneumonia and Whooping Cough..Oh My!

I’ve been sidelined from nail painting, due to a super unlucky combo of getting 1) pneumonia and 2) whooping cough. I feel like I’m collecting random childhood diseases. :P

NeverTooMuchGlitter PSA: It may seem extreme, but if everyone around you seems sick and you live in a city, consider wearing a surgical mask when you’re out and about. I use public transportation every day, and there was a lot of coughing  going on. I didn’t think much of it at the time, until I got really unwell. I also didn’t get a booster vaccine against the whooping cough, so it snuck in while I had pneumonia. If you’re not into vaccines for whatever reason, then my mask advice goes double. Coughing until you vomit and bruise/crack ribs is really awful. I am walking proof of that!

Since chemical exposure is out of the question for my poor sad lungs, I’ve been spending my downtime practicing new techniques like watercolor, one-stroke, foiling and calligraphy. I tried to sneak in a little Konad and it started me coughing, so I’m behaving myself. Really and truly.

Luckily, I have a lot of already-painted base nails in my stash, so I got to just have fun and start decorating.

Stay well, everyone! I’m very torn on vaccines, since they are definitely tested on animals and benefit Big Pharma, but the diseases they prevent also cause a lot of suffering. Best advice: prevention! Wear a mask, wash your hands, and dodge sick people as best you can. I wish I’d followed my own advice! But I hope to be back on my feet in a couple of weeks and see you then.

Romantic Nails 2015 by NTMG IMG_2673 IMG_2607 IMG_2598

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March 2015 Roundup

Whoa, it’s almost April already. Hard to keep track of time in a seasonless place! I’m zipping off for a short beach break tomorrow, which is very exciting. I also have pneumonia, which is not so exciting. So I’m headed off with steroid inhaler, antibiotics and bathing suit. Not ideal but it happens.

I’ve been doing some custom work (hello, spring brides!) and a lot of swatch/testing with a large bunch of pigments from a company called Kolortek. Here’s the second half of the swatches, featuring blues, purples, pinks and metallics. Click to enlarge!

These were pretty nice, a few problem children in the group but most performed  very well. The metallic silvers are opaque enough to be used for stamping.


IMG_2513 IMG_2515 IMG_2516

Lots of interesting possibilities here. I sometimes add pigment to my Konad stamping polishes, if they’re too sheer. I’m not sure if the bottles I got were just duds, but Konad put out some very disappointing silver and gold shades that were near impossible to use. With some pigment mixed in, they’re workable. But still a big thumbs down for those Konad metallics! They should have done better, pretty much being the inventors of stamping.

I’ve also got (my personal fave!) interference pigments to play with. Those are the ones that look white but reflect different colors over a dark base. But being that I am coughing like crazy all the time, I’m taking it easy. I do wear a mask whenever I work with pigments, but measuring out powder + being overtaken by a coughing spell= colorful dust everywhere.

And a couple photos of the nail art I’ve been working on recently. For some reason, I’ve been on a big Japanese 3d nail kick (yes, I know that’s pretty much all the time) but it’s been especially frenzied lately. Something about spring makes me want to stick even *more* stuff onto my nails. Not quite sure why, but there’s what I’ve come up with recently.

IMG_2569  Purple Goth Lolita IMG_2440 IMG_2461 IMG_2497 IMG_2558

Marsala BurgundyMonopoly Nails NTMG

All right, Typhoid Mary is over n out. Hope everyone who’s celebrating has a lovely Easter and Passover! And stay away from people who cough a lot (like me at the moment.)

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day 2015!

Wishing everyone a very Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Though we don’t celebrate it here in Southeast Asia, I am a big fan of phony green things and pots o’ gold.

I had to do a bit of nail-art recycling from past years, since I’m having a little stiff shoulder problem which is flaring up when I paint. So here is a nail art collage with (mostly) previously posted items, but I hope you can still find a festive design that will bring a smile to your face. :)

St Patrick's Day

Hope everyone has a day filled with luck, gold coins and green beer. Happy St. Patty’s, all!

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First Look at Kolortek Swatches

It’s a colorful day! I got a massive amount of samples from Kolortek, an industrial pigment supplier who doesn’t test on animals. They are based in China, but export for Western markets and seem to have all their (cruelty-free) US and EU standards up to date. Yay for that!

I started off first by swatching the 6000 series of 48 colors. The pigments were mostly very smooth and had good opacity. There were a couple problem children in the yellows/yellow greens pigments with some nubbly burr-type flecks (yes, I know that’s not a good scientific term) in the finish, but it was mostly eased out with topcoat. Some of the metallics were opaque enough to be used as stamping polish for any Konad/stamping fans. I didn’t actually try it out for stamping yet, but will do so soon!

Here’s the spread:


I just mixed a pea-sized amount of pigment with 8-10 drops of regular clear polish, mixed them up, and swatched away!

Here’s a little illustration:

NTMG pigment

I swatched all 48 shades on a palette and currently have a bunch of colors on my fingers and toes to test the wear, see if the colors stain, fade, etc. When Mr. NTMG is not looking, I will use his fingers and toes for swatching too. That will cover 40 of the 48 shades. ;)

Kolortek No 1

These swatches have a coat of Seche Vite topcoat. Most of the shades are fairly smooth, but you can see some issues with the Blue Green and Lemon Yellow. There is heavy air bubbling and some burrs on the surface, but most of the colors were very smooth and easy to work with. Other brands of pigments get irregularities in the surface- this is not a Kolortek issue. This is pretty minor, considering how many of them performed very well.

The good news is, the pigments are great. The bad news is, Kolortek is an industrial supplier only, meaning their smallest order is 1kg of pigment. In other words, enough for several lifetimes supply. They will work with a 500g minimum in some cases. I just wanted to show the many amazing colors of cosmetic pigments available and how they translate into nail polish. standard warning. Wear your mask when working with pigments as it’s easy to inhale the tiny particles. Treat your lungs kindly- they do a lot of work for you! And #2, DO NOT USE ARTISTS PIGMENTS ON YOUR SKIN. They are dirt cheap and incredibly vivid, but they are also highly toxic. Stick to cosmetic grade pigments and if in doubt, don’t put a pigment on your skin or nails, and that goes double for eyes and lips.

That’s all for now- will be back with some updates on the durability and staining in a few days, plus more swatches!

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