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Halloween-Happy Beauty: Products to Celebrate the Spooky Season

Channel your inner Bella Cullen from “Twilight” (aren’t those vampires stunningly beautiful?), or go for a more goth look this month with Halloween-hued nail polishes, lipsticks, eye shadows, and more.

We’re seeing enough Halloween-themed beauty products to fill an entire candy bag, but here are six spooky favorites for the nails and face. With them, you can celebrate Halloween, even if you aren’t in full costume.

ORLY’s Spellbound Trio of glittery polishes come in Monster Mash (green) and R.I.P. and Right Amount of Evil, with orange hues ($10 each). Or go for dramatic black nails using ORLY’s Goth, Naughty, or Liquid Vinyl polishes ($8.50 each).

WBe sweet and devilish with NYC’s limited edition lipsticks, eye shadows, nail polishes, eyeliners, false lashes, and more. Among our favorites for a vampire-ish look: Tempted, a red/black lipstick duo; Devilish, a red/black eyeshadow duo; and Nightmare, a black/reddish plum eyeliner.

China Glaze’s Wicked Collection for Halloween 2012 is all about the glitter and shimmer, with six polishes, named Cast a Spell, Bizarre Blurple, Glitter Goblin, Make A Spectacle, Roguish Red, and Immortal, a gorgeous gray.

Wet n Wild’s Fantasy Makers Halloween collection includes affordable black and red lipsticks, false lashes, tattoos, glitter eyeliners, hair color, and face and body glitter. Even the nail polish containers have a creepy look, with the handles in the shape of tombstones.

OPI’s So So Skullicious mini pack ($12.50) has four nail colors – black (Mourning Glory), orange (Hi, Pumpkin!), yellow (Candlelight) and pink (A-Rose from the Dead), plus nail decals, all based on the Day of the Dead, or Dia de los Muertos, skull.

Avon’s Halloween collection includes cute Halloween mini emery boards (89 cents), Spooky and Sparkly Nail Art – with orange, silver, and black nail gems ($6).

Have fun this Halloween with these and other wicked products!

–Carolyn Crist contributed












Nail Trend: Nail Marbling

It is amazing how trends come back around! I remember as a little girl, my older cousin would go to the nail salon and come back with these colorful, intricate swirls on her acrylic nails. Almost 20 years later, an evolved version of the “marbling” trend has re-emerged!

From what I recall, past marbling techniques involved putting globs of paint directly onto the nail and creating the design or swirl directly on the nail. Now, it is much more simple with less mess and minimal dry time. What you will need for marbling are at least two nail polishes, a toothpick, and a bowl of water. When choosing colors for the marbling effect, remember that glitter or metallic shades won’t work for this technique. Also, some brands are more watery than others and won’t work well either. Use trial and error to see which polishes work best for this. I used Rimmel London.

As for nail prep, start off with white polish on your nails as a base. You can tape around the nails to ensure there won’t be too much clean up. (I was too excited and skipped this step.)

Start out with a bowl full of room temperature water. If it is to0 cold or warm, the nail polish won’t spread.

Once the base on your nails in completely dry, start with the marbling. In the bowl, add drops of the nail polish into the water. (If it quickly spreads, you have chosen the right one.)Tip: You have to be fast when marbling, so keep the nail polish bottles loosely capped. Begin adding colors quickly into your bowl of water, then create the swirl pattern you would like.

nail manicure marbling

Dip the nail bed into the swirl and carefully remove finger. Tip: Sometimes you can put two nails at once with some practice. The nail polish dries quickly on the surface of the water, so make sure to remove the film on top of the water when you start over.

VOILA, now you have marble nails!

nail manicure marbling

Have you tried the Marble Nail Technique? Any tips or tricks? Let us know below!

-Vernize Rios


10 Things I’ve Learned from Doing Manicures and Pedicures Professionally

You learn a lot about product, methods, and the ever-so-persistent resistance to change when you do personal grooming services on hundreds of strangers. It’s enlightening, inspiring, and ultimately wonderfully rewarding.

Here are the things I have learned about foot and hand grooming through experience.

1. Dry skin and callus are two different things. Cracks come from having both. You cannot get rid of cracks in heels by filing them. They need to be hydrated and allowed to heal. Once the dryness is dealt with, then you can deal with the callus. They will not go away by getting a pedicure once or twice a year. Consistency with hydrating twice daily and filing 2-3 times a week is the ideal. If it’s really bad, you can get a pedicure and have the esthetician do the hard work.

2. You can file callus wet or dry. Wet will get rid of more buildup, and dry will give a wonderfully smooth finish.

3. People always use too much product! Most spa brand products are more concentrated and should last a long time. Start the application where the skin is driest and then massage it into the rest of the foot. Foot lotions/foams are designed for the thicker skin on the bottoms of feet; they don’t need to be applied to the knee. The size of a dime of lotion and a walnut for foam is all you need per foot.

4. Soaking in water weakens the polish. Nails absorb water when they are soaked. Think of it like untreated, painted wood. The swelling and shrinking make it hard for the polish to adhere to the entire surface. So keep those manicures out of the dishwater! Alternatively, soak hands and feet before removing polish to make the process easier.

5. Neutralize the nail before polishing. If a base coat is applied on the nail overtop of lotion or oil, it won’t adhere properly and will chip off. Give those nails a little swipe with polish remover before you start to polish. Nails also produce their own oils so even if you think they’re fine, do it anyway!

6. Yes you do need Base and Top Coat. If you want the application to last. When you paint anything else and want it to last, you always prime and seal. This is no different!

7. Avoid the skin. Polish on skin will peel off as soon as it’s dry. It will also pull off and chip any polish on the nail that it’s attached to. Take an orange wood stick with a small amount of cotton wrapped around the end and clean up the edges with polish remover before it dries.

8. Polishes have personality. White polishes will always get goopy quickly — it’s something about the pigment that’s used. I’ve never gotten through a whole bottle. Blues, greens, and pinks usually need three thin coats as opposed to two. Glitter polishes last much longer, but are also harder to remove. Red is messy when removing. Hold a polish remover-soaked cotton ball on the nail for 30 seconds and then wipe towards the end of the nail. Don’t scrub back and forth. Let the remover soak through the layers and dissolve the varnish.

9. People will continue to use a product even if it doesn’t work because “They’ve always used it/My mother used it/TV said…” If after consistent and proper use for a month there is no change at all to the condition that you are dealing with, the product doesn’t work for you. This is ok. It doesn’t mean it’s a bad product, you just need something else. It makes no sense to continue paying money for something out of habit when you’re not seeing results.

10. Be consistent, patient and realistic! Manicures do not last as long as pedicures. The beach will destroy the polish on your toes. Yes it does take as much as two hours for polish to dry enough to wear shoes.  Let it be fun! Enjoy those bright colors and soft feet, but remember that everyday life also leaves marks. If estheticians could control physics and chemistry, believe me they would.

Have fun with your fingers and toes, let them be beautiful and pampered. These tips will help you get the most out of your maintenance at home, meaning that when you go for a pedicure, they’ll be able to focus more on the fun parts; perfect toes and lots of yummy massage.

-Sheena McCallum

Sheena has traded in years of working as an esthetician to become a Beauty Blogger for the Canadian online retailer of spa grade skin, hair care and makeup — Spa Boutique. They can be contacted at, on Facebook and on Twitter.

Extreme Fall Trends

As a spa and beauty industry professional, you’ll need to be up on all the hot trends for the Fall season. See what this year’s beauty professionals need to know to keep their clients trendy, stylish, and happy.

Makeup Artists
This Fall, we’ll see lots of colored liners. Eyeshadows in shades of blue will be most popular. Think you won’t look good in blue? Think again. Match the shade of blue to the shade of your eye color, using paler shades for light eyes and navies for darker eyes.

Dark, vampy lips are very stylish this Fall too. Lips will be dramatic so dark browns are popular, as well as deep berry colors. The dark lips are especially good when a neutral and natural look has been created — this gives a more dramatic effect to the look.

Nail Technicians
Also extreme in the beauty industry will be nail colors. Dark grey (a rather neutral shade) and even black are going to be hot this Fall. If you’re not really into the whole black idea, then deep burgundies and rich reds are for you. See more about the nail trends here.

Wardrobe Stylists
To get the most stylish look this Fall, try various shades of purple — it is THE Fall color. From tops to skinny jeans to booties to clutches, purples are a great way to make your outfit pop. But don’t wear all of these items together in purple, for you don’t want to be too matchy-matchy. Accessorizing is key!

Hair Stylists
We’ve seen it before and we saw it at the Emmys on the likes of Marcia Cross, Heidi Klum, and Sandra Oh. It’s the bun — both tight and loose. This style will keep hair off the face, but will flow in a way to soften the look of a completely pulled-back hairstyle.

Glowing skin is not just for summertime. Be sure your clients use the right products to exfoliate, moisturize, and for foundation. These methods will leave skin looking healthy and fresh. Additionally, moisturizers with an SPF are so important, even after you’re not basking in the sun’s rays. Encourage clients to use products that have some sort of protection to keep their skin up-to-par.

You want to get it right for your clients this Fall and it’s all about dark shades and being extreme. So take some risks, work your magic, and if you haven’t already, get started on your beauty career!

-Amanda Fornecker