It's also raining and windy and just vile... blargh. I am so not winter person.
Plus it makes it so difficult to get outside to take some nice shots of my pretty polishes, so unfortunately you're stuck with the slightly crappy indoor photos, for the time being at least.
Hopefully, however, the polish I am going to show you at some point today will make up for my subpar photo shenanigans, as it is a very lovely polish indeed, made by the delightful Stacey of Two Birds Lacquer.
And although I bought the polish myself Stacey did very kindly ask me to have a go of her cuticle oil pens, which I will also review here (kill Two Birds with one stone... geddit?! badadadum).
Ok, first lets have a look at the cuticle oil pens. Now, I am the first to admit that nail care has never been something I took much notice of. Hell, I didn't even own a base coat or top coat until the beginning of this year. *gasp* Sacrilege!
Suffice to say this world of "cuticle oils" and "balms" and what not is all a bit new to me and I am not claiming to be an expert in any way, shape or form.
On the other hand, I can be honest and tell you that my fingers, and the cuticle area in particular, look bloody brilliant since I've been using the Two Birds oil. So it obviously does something right ;)
The pens themselves come in either no scent, lavender or ylang ylang and I received one of each of the scented oils. The ingredients listed are all nice and natural too- jojoba oil, sweet almond oil and the essential oil that is used to scent the product (lavender also has good soothing qualities too, which is an added bonus).
I will say that the ylang ylang took some getting used to, as it's quite a distinctive scent, but I quite like it now. However, if you're super sensitive to strong scents then I would probably go the lavender or one without essential oils.
Application is easy-peasy, you just take off the lid (obviously!) and twist the end of the pen clockwise until oil saturates the brush. The simply brush the oil around the cuticles, on the skin of the finger, on the nail itself and even under the nail- the brush design makes it easy to get the oil into those tricky spots which is pretty cool.
I now keep one pen by my bed and treat my fingers before I turn out the light (which has made for a slightly slippery lamp switch, but hey, we all gotta make sacrifices) and I keep the other one out here by the mac so I remember to moisturise during the day.
It's interesting how quickly I got used to incorporating these little routines into my day, but it's not second nature yet, and I want it to be as I really do think my nails and the skin around them is looking much nicer, and that makes for a happy camper.
Now, I have read on a few nail blogs that Jojoba oil is one of the few oils whose molecules are small enough to actually penetrate the keratin layers of the nail, helping the nail to become more flexible and less brittle, which is why I used the oil pens on my naked nails as much as I could.
I also wanted to show you what my cuticles and nails look like sans polish, as manicures tend to distract from the cuticles, however my nails also happen to be stained to hell and back, so I really wasn't sure whether to sit on the review until the staining grew out or just suck it up.
But, because I care about your cuticles, I have decided to share some awful, awful photos of my bare nails. So hey, lucky you!
I am soooo sorry (don't say I didn't warn you). I stupidly didn't think to do some before and after shots either, so yeah, sorry about that :D
Anyhoo, if you can tear your horrified eyes away from the stained mess that is my nails, you will hopefully be able to see how awesome my cuticles look- nary a hangnail or dry bit of skin in sight! Which is great, because I tend to nibble those little pieces of dry skin and it ends up looking pretty blah. And my skin, which doesn't like the cold, is definitely handling this crappola weather waaaaayyyyy better than it usually does.
So, from a completely subjective standpoint I think these Two Birds cuticle oil pens are the bomb and I will certainly be grabbing some more once these run out.
And lets not forget that Two Birds Lacquer also have some simply stunning polishes that are, imho, absolutely worth checking out- they are such a promising new entry into the world of indie polishes. I'm really looking forward to seeing where they take this brand as they clearly care about making a stellar product and have a really creative take on their polish lines too.
And that's part one of this two part entry, as it was getting kinda long.
Don't forget to tune in to the next enthralling episode!
Will my nails suddenly look fabulous and return to their natural colour? (no) Will I meet the love of my life over the polish clearance bin? Will my cats manage to shed even more fur directly onto my wet, freshly painted nails? Will I continue to ask ridiculous, rhetorical questions as if this were some cheesy soap opera that I'm trying to get you hooked on? Only time will tell...
Until next time (approximately some time in the next couple of hours) I say "love and polish for all!"
*Please Note; the products in this entry were sent to me by the manufacturer for my honest and unbiased review. At no stage will I ever give a glowing review simply because I was sent the product. I believe that honesty is paramount when reviewing products, regardless of whether they were purchased by me or given to me by a supplier &/or manufacturer.*
<a href="http://www.bloglovin.com/blog/12127531/?claim=qhxstkt95vd">Follow my blog with Bloglovin</a>