My Nail Polish Collection

While I was packing up my room at the end of term, I took the opportunity to go through a lot of my stuff and get rid of a lot of things. One of the areas I tackled was my rather large nail polish collection!

P1000829I forced myself to be quite realistic and get rid of anything that I never wore or always took off straight after applying (does anyone else do this?). I admitted to myself that I don’t like bright pink nail polish, or glitter in a clear top coat, and despite the prettiness of the bottles, cleared those out too. Now all my polish fits in one box (with the exception of A England, which I will never cull, and which I’ll show my collection of another day).  Continue reading

Nails of the Day: Sweet as Ice Cream

Today the sunshine made me reach for my brightest, springiest polishes for a sweet skittle manicure! This is much more striking and cutesy than I would normally wear, but I have to admit, it’s making me smile.

P1000855Coral: Barry M Gelly Hi Shine Papaya

Yellow: Barry M Lemon Ice Cream

Turquoise: Barry M Gelly Hi Shine Greenberry

Blue: Barry M Blueberry Ice Cream

Purple: A England Guinevere

Top Coat: Sally Hansen Insta-Dri


Quite a lot of Barry M! As always with pastel/light colours, there’s a certain amount of streakiness meaning that several coats are needed of most of these: the coral and turquoise are three coaters, the purple is two, blue is (impressively) only one, and the yellow is the worst polish I’ve ever used, needing five coats. It’s already smudged on my right hand, because five coats is just waaay too many to have on your nails, however long you give them to dry! The other colours are fairly impressive, though.

What do you think of this mani? A bit too childish, or perfect for a spot of sunshine?

Asha x

Nails of the Day: Blue Polka Dots with Barry M and Essie

P1000811The simplest of all nail art! Paint your nails with a base colour (mine’s Barry M Blueberry Ice Cream). Unfold a kirby grip, dip it in the second polish (mine’s Essie Mezmerised), dot over your nails. I’ve jazzed this up with a zigzag of reversed colour on my middle finger, and topped it with Sally Hansen Insta-Dri top coat, et voila.

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100 Followers Giveaway!

Hello! Sorry there’s been no post since Monday, I’ve been rather busy celebrating my 21st birthday!

In honour of that, and in honour of reaching my first proper blogging milestone, 100 whole followers, I decided to do a little giveaway (UK only, I’m really sorry).

Here’s what you could win:P1000053

A lovely Lush Mr Bumble, and a Barry M TMLP lipstick!

The Mr Bumble contains a Honey Bee bath bomb, and a beehive-shaped chunk of Honey I Washed the Kids soap, which were my first ever products from Lush, and are some of their bestselling items. Also, who wouldn’t want this awesome bee winging its way to them in the post?

The TLMP lipstick is incredible (hopefully I’ll be putting up a review fairly soon). Yes, it is green. But it doesn’t come out green on your lips, oh no. This is magic. It reacts to the pH in your skin, or some other such magic, and goes the perfect pink for your skintone. It just so happens that on me, it goes a very similar shade to the Rimmel Apocalips Apocaliptic (a rich, bright, blue-fuchsia), but on my mum it goes a darkish rose-pink, and on another friend it goes a very natural rosey colour. I love it, and I thought that it would be cool to have a prize that suits everyone!

SO. What do you have to do to win these lovelies? 

This is really simple, there’s only two steps (and an optional step).

1. [COMPULSORY] Be a follower of The Oxford Owl, since I’m celebrating followers. You can follow via WordPress or via email if you don’t have a blog (text box in the sidebar).

(1.5.[OPTIONAL] Follow me on Bloglovin’ for an extra entry.)

2. [COMPULSORY] Leave me a comment with an email I can reach you at, telling me the name you follow as for each of the options. If you don’t comment, you don’t get entered.

And that’s it.

I’m really sorry, but I can only post to the UK – the costs to post outside would be as much as the prizes! The giveaway will run until 12pm (lunchtime) on Monday the 13th of May, and the winner will be randomly chosen and announced on Tuesday the 14th.

Good luck!

Asha x

A Great Sprawling Haul: Part One

So… I went shopping again… Although in my defence it was planned this time (mostly)! The things I planned might have grabbed a few other things to join them in my basket, though…


The most boring things here were planned:

Two boxes of hair dye, to sort out the stripy, multi-coloured mess that is my hair (bottom half auburn, then 8 inches of the colour I actually want to be, then four inches of my natural lighter hair) before I head back to college.

The most amazing cotton pads in the world! They’re huge – I can do my whole face or all ten nails with one, instead of four tiny round ones. They’re very absorbent and soft and quilty. They never come apart at the sides like cheap ones. They are from Lloyds and they are a complete necessity to me now (as far as cotton pads can be). I only picked them up by mistake originally, but I’m in love.

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The Trouble with Glitter

That title makes this sound like a heartwarming film about a lady of the night’s amusing escapades, I fear. Instead, it is the glitteriest nail polish review you’re likely to see today!

This is Barry M 340, otherwise known as Aqua Glitter.

Say hello, Barry M 340.

This is a beautiful clear polish filled with tons of turquoise glitter. I love Barry M, and I love glitter, and I love turquoise. Should be good, right? And I did love this on my hands. For the first five minutes.

The Trouble with this Glitter.

1. It needs many many layers to reach a bottle-colour saturation. This is one coat Rimmel Azure, then three or four coats of glitter depending on the size of the nail. This isn’t a massive problem, but is a bit too fiddly for me for every day wear, because:

2. It takes FOREVER to dry. Thank goodness for fast-dry topcoat.

3. It is a real nuisance to photograph. This polish is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever had on my nails, but I could not get one picture where it looked true to life in colour or shininess.

4. Actually, lets talk about the shininess. The above photo is with a coat of Nails Inc Kensington Caviar fast dry topcoat, for speed but also because glitters are really rough to the touch (problem 5?). Before that, the glitter was sparkly, yes, but in a kind of matte way. It just felt a bit flat and muted, rather than this in-your-face sparkle.

5. It falls off. Seriously. I had this on my nails for half an hour before it started to peel back at the tips. This might have been my application (maybe I should have fast-dried every layer of the glitter individually, or maybe my basecoat wasn’t totally dry), but, do you remember that peel-off nail polish from when you were little? This was exactly like that. It SLID off my nails. It was so stretchy that where a normal polish would have chipped on the tips, it pushed down into a little hump in the middle of my nail.

BUT (and it’s a big but):

This is just an absolutely beautiful thing to wear. I mean, just look at it.

Look at that colour!

Look how sparkly!

How could that not make you happy?? (apart from when it all falls off)

My conclusion, then, is that I adore this colour and the glitteriness (when topcoated!), but I won’t be attempting it a) on short notice, or b) anytime I want it to last. Perfect for nights out, I think.


And it did make me feel like a mermaid.

Nailed it.

Excuse the terrible, uninventive puns I’m using as titles at the moment. I’m sure I’ll have more creativity soon!

Anyway, have you ever had a complete beauty disaster? I bet everyone has, but I’m exceedingly proud that I’ve made a complete success out of it, albeit indirectly. Intrigued? Well, owing to an unfortunate interaction with a box of hair dye a few weeks ago, my nails managed to get stained a rather fetching shade of dark brown – really not a good look. No amount of scrubbing, nail polish remover, cream cleaner, toothpaste, lemon juice or bleach would remove the stains (yes, I tried EVERYTHING), so I’ve been having to cover up for a little while.

Luckily, this is great; I love having painted nails. Annoyingly, I’d lost a few helping a friend move, so they’re still a tad short for my liking, but hey. So, I’ve been really enjoying having pretty nails all the time – except for one thing. I’m bored of all my colours. It’s too summery for the dark, glittery, shiny winter colours I favour, and my nails have been far too short for those anyway. I don’t tend to wear light shades except for nail art, so while I do actually have all the colours of the rainbow, they just weren’t going to work on their own.

I was sitting looking at my box of polish, thinking, ‘gosh, I wish I had a pale turquoise’. I didn’t, but what I did have were these two Barry M colours, which on their own, I hate:


So I mixed them together on a bit of plastic to see what I could come up with. And I’m dead pleased with the results.


Et voila! The perfect summery pale turquoise. Ring fingers with a coat of the beautiful A-England Morgan le Fay, a sheer white glitter (accidentally applied, after my top coat had some left on the brush from last time, so I went with it). I’m not sure I like a differently coloured ring finger, but I’ll never be able to match the plain turquoise exactly, so glittery ring fingers it is.

I love it. I’m really hoping that someone asks me what colour it is so I can burst out “MWAHAHAHAH IT’S MINE, IT’S MINE!”… That’s not an inappropriate response, right?

I’ll definitely be seeing what other colours I have that I can mix up. Have you ever tried this? How did it go? Recommendations for colours that mix well would be very welcome!