3 ways to wear Swarovski Crystal Pixie Nail Art!

Swarovski Crystal Pixie nail art is the manicure industry’s best kept secret. It’s still popular in Japan and the States, but strangely this style is quite rare in Singapore. I have seen some gorgeous pictures on Instagram so I was really excited when Vanitee matched me up with a lovely manicurist, Janelle from Nailbuddies, who gave me a very rare Swarovski Crystal Pixie gel manicure!

You may be wondering – what on earth are Swarovski Crystal Pixies? They are tiny round crystals mixed with other bullions, and serve as little pretty gems to adorn your nail art. So you may choose to highlight one finger, or bling out all 10 of them (thumbs included). I swear, they are much shinier, lighter and sturdier than your average plastic nail gems. After my experience, I decided to write this piece about 3 ways to wear the Swarovski Crystal Pixie Nail Art!

Janelle has 2 types of this: the dark and light crystals. I chose to use the light ones this time, but it really depends on what base colour you choose, and which crystal will complement it best.

Anyway, more about Nailbuddies! Janelle offers a convenient home-based service, so you may select from her range of available dates. If you’re an Eastie, her home in Tampines Street 84 (psst…please see the app for her full address) is just 3 bus-stops always from the interchange. If you’re lost, just give Janelle a direct ping in the Vanitee chat and she will give you directions!

I arrived at Janelle’s place for the first time, and was invited into her spacious, private manicure haven. Her manicure workspace is so comfortable and I felt right at home. Plus Janelle is so chatty and friendly, I felt at ease being in a stranger’s room! Right away, I could feel her passion and expertise with the number of tools and gel bottles in her room.
Choosing from her stash of gel colours is really not easy – her collection is amazing!! This is just some of it:

I picked the dark, starry midnight steel blue (which already naturally bling because I love glittery nails!), and Janelle got right to work. First she patiently removed my DIY-ed gelish nails, then trimmed my nails into nice round shapes, before buffing and taming my messy cuticles. I applaud her skills! She really saved my ugly nails.

See? She’s giving my nails some TLC (won’t show you her face, till she gives me full permission!)

Following the TLC, she gave my nails 2 layers of base colour. Then she takes out some very delicate skinny tools to begin glueing the Swarovski Crystal Pixies. So fascinating!

I cannot emphasis how carefully she placed the crystals on my fingernails, and arranges them artistically. It’s like a surgery going on in here!

She actually pours the crystals onto the fingernails that require more crystals, as this gives a more even effect.

In the span of 2.5 hours, my nails were done! Revealing the full pictures in 3…2….1…

So for your next nail adventure, why don’t you try these 3 amazing ways to wear the Swarovski Crystal Pixies?

1. Forming Shapes with the crystals

With a silver sticker strip, a triangle was first shaped, before filling it up with crystals. This is my personal favourite because of the endless possibilities! Yes shape anything you want. You will never get bored.

2. Crystal Clusters

Spot the crystal clusters! Yes these are on my index finger (top hand), and middle finger (bottom hand). Love how the crystal are clustered near my cuticles to give variety to the texture.  These subtle differences lets your nails stand out from everyone else’s boring old matte patterns. (But no offence, I have days when I just want matte black nails)

3. Pairing Crystals with Bigger Gems

If you’re looking to go over-the-top, Swarovski Crystal Pixies will be able to help. When paired with chunkier gems, the effect is crazy – I swear it’s the first thing people see when I wave to them, in the dark, 5 feet away.

See how the bling-bling gems stand out in this full-manicure shot?

Swarovski Crystal Pixies really helped to add a gorgeous shiny glow, and an interesting bumpy 3D effect. Sometimes I wash my hair, and I can feel the crystals on my head – it’s like a scalp massage! (Not kidding) Or maybe I’m biased because I’m loving it so much.

Really enjoyed my manicure session with Janelle from Nailbuddies. Learnt from her many tips and tricks that she willingly shares, which include: a manicure must always end with capping the outer edges with a layer of finish! Also, if topping up your manicure with Swarovski Crystal Pixies, you don’t actually need a top coat. Her skills with the crystals are amazing and if you have never tried the Swarovski Crystal Pixies, I strongly encourage you to. She’s available at @nailbuddies on Instagram and Vanitee app!

It’s super easy to book a session from Vanitee! There are beauty offers from nails, hair, brow and lash, makeup and hairstyling and facial treatments uploaded daily from over 1,700 beauty salons! It’s truly Singapore’s #1 app for booking beauty services. And conveniently, you can also see customer reviews and view the artists’ portfolios on the app itself, by simply clicking on their profiles! And as I mentioned, you get to chat direct with the artist, so you can get your requests way in advance. Like for my session, Janelle checked with me way in advance the type of design I wanted. Sounds good right? On top of that, you can earn rewards from booking on the app too! Sign up with my link <<viktol1>> and get $15 OFF any beauty services! Download the Vanitee app now from www.vanitee.com!
Anyway, here are some screenshots of the app to illustrate. When you search for “Nailbuddies”, this page should surface:

When you click “Portfolio”, you get to view photos of the work that she has done for her past clients. That’s right – she does Tsum Tsum nail art!

Under reviews, you can also view what others have said about your artist. I gave Janelle an honest review, with some pictures for reference. You can view it on her page!

Looking forward to my next manicure session, and to try new patterns using the Swarovski Crystal Pixies. Have already booked my next session with Nailbuddies!

If you have pictures after your Swarovski Crystal Pixie sessions, do share! 🙂

Xoxo,
Viktoria Jean
P.S. Sharing a bonus picture I took with Janelle’s pup!! He’s totally adorable, and is usually kept away when strangers or customers come. Special case only that he is let out to play with me 🙂

 

[DIARY] GOODBYE SINGAPORE AIRLINES

Ending my career as a stewardess was perhaps the best decision I’ve made this year. Letting go of this comfort zone I had (unfortunately) sunk into for the past 2 years involved lots of anxiety, doubt, and inevitable thoughts of missing the globetrotting lifestyle. Nevertheless I made my decision quickly and set my heart for the big change when the opportunity to work as a media analyst came. There were spurts of excitement and also joy at finally stepping into an industry I might actually have a genuine interest in.

“You must make a decision that you are going to move on. It wont happen automatically. You will have to rise up and say, ‘I don’t care how hard this is, I don’t care how disappointed I am, I’m not going to let this get the best of me. I’m moving on with my life.”
― Joel Osteen, Your Best Life Now: 7 Steps to Living at Your Full Potential

Mixed feelings aside, one must always look ahead and move on in life. Thinking back, it was a whirlwind of fun & adventure being a cabin crew at one of the world’s ‘best airlines”. Work was hard, schedules could be crazy, rosters were sometimes bad, and there were months I went without meeting friends outside of the airlines industry… BUT I don’t and will never regret these two+ years with SIA. This insightful journey was exhilarating, at times excruciating, and came with many lessons to be learnt.

Things I already miss:

1. Job title: FLIGHT STEWARDESS.
Onboard, I’ve been called by many other names: Miss, Li, Darling, Sweetheart, Eh, Excuse Me, Hello, Auntie, Jiejie, and nonverbal gestures such passengers pulling my kebaya or waving their hands wildly in the air to get my attention.

singapore girl crew

2. The Singapore Girl hairdo.
Despite the strict grooming guide, there are as many variations as there are flight stewardesses in SIA. Seniority (on first impression) is based on the height of your hump (that height-enhancing bump on your head, derived from resemblances to camel humps). I actually miss this fuss-free chignon – when I mean fuss-free I refer to not having hair all over my face, not time taken to prepare.

SIA girl

3. Quintessentially, HEAVY DUTY MAKEUP.
For long flights we can wear them up to 18 hrs (14hr flight time + 2hr reporting time + 1 hr preparation at home + 1hr travelling from airport to hotel after touchdown). The worst thing is: falling asleep without removing them! This is why I grew so unaccustomed to my own bare face.

4. PARIS. LONDON. ZURICH. GREECE.
Oh the places you’ll go, without ever having to take any work home. Once we touchdown at the destination, HOLA FREEDOM until the wake-up call for your next flight sector. I’m happy to say I’ve touched all corners of the earth that SIA goes to, and have them all Instagram-Mapped.

EIFFEL TOWER PARIS TRAVEL BLOG sia

5. Hotels
Every flight was somewhat a vacay. Stepping into a freshly-laundered room with a hot bath and clean sheet (though sometimes tiny/musky-smelling less-than-4-star closet of a hotel room) after a tiring flight is the best feeling ever. Hence the perpetual reluctance to check out.

hongkong hotel

6. Hotel room selfies. Ha.

hotel room selfie

7. Living out of a suitcase – bursting or not, that bitch needs to be closed. It’s a woe for many stewardesses especially on long-haul.

bursting luggage

 

8. Coffee in the morning, coffee in the noon and coffee any time of day, because jet lag demands to be fed with caffeine. Truth is, I can drink 2 shots and still sleep for forever.

I need coffee

 

9. “Bragging Rights”
Friend, at dinner: “So what did you have for breakfast this morning?”
Me, casually: “Injeolmi Bingsoo from this place in Hongdae, Korea.”
Trust me, I am not bragging. Just stating the facts, you asked for it.
Breakfast in another time zone, lunch 35000 feet in the skies, and dinner in Singapore.

korea bingsoo bingsu

 

10. The skies. And the familiar wings we see from our crew seats when we look out from the windows. The one below was taken out flying out from Singapore Changi Airport. The following three were taken enroute Houston from Moscow, so you can see Greenland.

planes skies blue greenland skies greenland from the sky

 

11. Behind-the-scenes Crazy
Well, stewardesses have all the fun…when you’re sleeping and we’re trying to stay awake on a red-eye flight. Oh…and these girls!! Cutest and sweetest little darlings ever.
sia stewardess

12. Coming home.
The word ‘home’ takes on a whole new meaning, when it’s all you’re thinking of the moment you set foot on an aircraft bound for foreign territories.

A little over a month, people still ask if I miss flying. Well if you’ve been at it for 2 years, day in day out, you’re bound to feel a sense of loss. As it is for any kind of job and lifestyle. The only thing I actually really started to miss were the chirpy greetings I received from passengers when I greet them upon coming aboard, the genuine thank yous upon rendering assistance wherever I could, the adrenaline rush when we had a ton of duties we needed to complete and the eventual sweat-wiping relief when it’s all over. And the camaraderie over the years with a few colleagues. When we donned our kebaya, we were told to ‘smile at anything that moves’ – we would hold doors and lifts for people, greet people we don’t know, and talk to people we’ve never met – all without garnering weird looks. Try holding a door for someone in Singapore – you might get ‘thank you’ with an awkward look at best, or even ignored for your effort. Smile at a stranger, and be labelled a psycho. Greet someone in the lift, and end up taking the lift up alone. A well-mannered bunch we as stewards and stewardesses are – after all we are in the service industry. But we don’t always get the same respect and treatment in or out of the uniform.

Also, I was exposed to many kinds of teamwork & leadership (through observations, not actual leading), plus gained a kind of worldly experience that isn’t of the bragging sort. There’s never an end to how much of the world we can see. From big metropolitan cities with world-class airports to less-developed rural areas where drinking tap water gave me gastroenteritis for weeks, and where small girls on the streets wanted to take photos with a group of us just because our skin colour was different from theirs – they’ve never seen fair-skinned people in their lives.

I became a stewardess for the freedom, experience and a change of lifestyle. I never regretted, even as I was dying to leave the job. The job gave me loads of reasons to look back and smile. You’re meant to live your life in your 20s before youth slips away!

Once a Singapore Girl, Always a Singapore Girl. I still feel nostalgic at an SIA ad, or when I see an SIA aircraft landing or see ex-colleagues at the airport heading for flight or just coming back home.

singapore girl SIA kebaya

 

Well, this is goodbye! I’ve clipped my wings and started a new chapter in life.

xoxo,

Viktoria Jean

SEOUL DIARIES 014: CHEONGYECHEON STREAM 청계천

For serenity and peace in Seoul’s busy boulevard, Cheongyecheon’s mini waterfalls, crystal clear stream and quiet walking lanes is where I found clarity for my thoughts.

20140409-152053.jpg

20140409-152110.jpg

Honestly this 8.4 km / 5.2 miles long stream wasn’t as grand as what I had in mind, but still a picturesque sight in the city! Many couples were seen holding hands, strolling leisurely as if they had multitudes of time.

Cheonggyecheon Stream is near to Deoksugung Palace, Seoul Plaza, Sejong Center, Changdeokgung Palace, Changgyeonggung Palace, and Insadong street (where I had walked from!) It’s also close to major shopping malls like Lotte Department Store.

20140409-152102.jpg

20140409-152117.jpg

20140409-152135.jpg

20140409-152124.jpg

20140409-152145.jpg

20140409-152154.jpg

20140409-152214.jpg

20140409-152223.jpg

20140409-152239.jpg

20140409-152254.jpg

20140409-152306.jpg

20140409-152315.jpg

20140409-152324.jpg

20140409-152341.jpg

 

20140409-152231.jpg

20140409-152349.jpg

Hi there o(*゚▽゚*)o 20140409-152358.jpg

 

Not much wildlife here – I wasn’t the only one snapping pictures of this lonely duck.20140409-152406.jpg

20140409-152415.jpg

20140409-152716.jpg

 

In such a busy business and shopping district, a leisure strolling canal holds a hell lot of appeal. Especially since it’s the best place to go before or after a shopping spree.

20140409-152725.jpg

CHEONGYECHEON STREAM 청계천
110, Sejong-daero, Jung-gu, Seoul
서울특별시 중구 태평로1가 ~성동구 신답철교


Accessible from
– City Hall, Jonggak, Jongno 3-ga, Jongno 5-ga, Dongdaemun, Sinseol-dong (Seoul Subway Line 1) – City Hall, Euljiro 1-ga, Euljiro 3-ga, Euljiro 4-ga, Sindang, Sangwangsimni (Seoul Subway Line 2)
– Jongno 3-ga (Seoul Subway Line 1, 3 and 5)
– Dongdaemun History & Culture Park (Seoul Subway Line 4)
– Gwanghwamun (Seoul Subway Line 5)

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean