About Melissa / FAQ


Behind the Claw of Cthulhu, my name is Melissa and I hail from the Canadian west coast in Vancouver, British Columbia. I created this blog because I love nail polish and it's a separate space from my personal professional blog. By day, I am a computer girl, kind of like that girl Oliver Queen always harasses in the TV show Arrow and by night, I'm a photographer. All the photos on this nail blog do not reflect my body of professional photo work. I use a point and shoot camera to photograph my swatches.

Oh, I'm Asian. I'm only saying this because it might be of use to know when looking at my swatches for reference. My skin tone doesn't mesh well with oranges, and some light shades of purples and pinks.

Asides nail polish, I am an avid video games enthusiast. I am particularly a Blizzard (big blue) fangirl, casually playing as Random in StarCraft. My preference is Protoss.

I also love tea.


How did you get into this nail polish thing?
It was a bit of an accident! I used to only wear black nail polish, but then in 2011, OPI came out with that Black Shatter polish along with Katy Perry's collection. I thought it was very cool that I could wear black over anything! Soon enough I was experimenting with wearing bright colours underneath the Black Shatter, and soon enough, I wasn't even using Shatter anymore! I was going through a rough time personally at the time, and being able to be creative in little ways really helped me. Not to mention, the polish community has connected me to so many amazing people!

What's all this Nail Art Monday, Cheap Polish Tuesday, The Iron Throne... What... What is this madness?
Alright, first off it's called "Shitty Nail Art Monday" where on Mondays we experiment into the world of nail art! I'm not a nail artist and don't intend to become one, but nail art is fun, life should be fun. "Cheap Polish Tuesday" is an exploration of polishes that I find for sale or at regular price for $5 or less in Canadian dollars. And on Wednesdays, we wear pink! No, I am joking, but sometimes I do! "The Iron Throne" was created in 2014 (or rather I purchased a tiny Iron Throne and didn't know what to do with it) and is for polishes that have surpassed my expectations in regards to quality and beauty.

Um, I've seen you update Tuesdays with nail art and I've seen you post on other days with "cheap polish"!
Ahhhh I do my best to update good ol Cthulhu from Monday to Thursday but sometimes Canadian holidays get in the way and my other contract jobs get in the way. I do try my best to let everyone know where I am!

So, what nail related things can't you live without?
Hmmm... That was an oddly structured question - grammar wise - but anyhow, I use Rainbow Honey cuticle sticks and Burt's Bees cuticle cream whenever I can, usually at work if I've got a moment and especially when I am swatching and removing my polish. I use a nail clipper that I got from Daiso and a Sephora glass nail file - my natural nail shape is squoval, but I prefer a slight almond. I use cotton pads from the dollar store, but for removal, I use Quo by Orly polish remover (the green one) and the Julep Party's Over kit for glitter.

Do you have any sort of wishlist?
I sure do! I used to have a whole page dedicated to nail polishes I wanted but then I realized no one cared! I also have a wishlist over at Nail Polish Canada. It's right here. Here is a list of nail polishes I am currently hunting:

Cult Nails - Clairvoyant aka Unicorn Puke
Rainbow Honey - Dearly Beloved
Nerd Lacquer - (anything, really)
Lush Lacquer - Clowning Around

What do you use to photograph your swatches?
I currently use a Panasonic Lumix GF-1 with a 20mm f/1.7 pancake lens and I've been known to use Lightroom 4, Paint Shop Pro 9, and GIMP for editing. I use a make shift lightbox using four desk lamps with white temperature lights and I also use a white card to manually set my white balance. It's a really ugly lightbox but it works. I edit my photos to reflect properly white balanced images, which in turn yields colour correct photography.

You're rambling again, Melissa.
I've once been told that if I was a super hero, I would be Verbose Girl! Ahhh! If you want to know more, feel free to email me with inquiries, dog vs. cat YouTube videos, photos of Day[9], relationship advice questions, pretty much anything over to: clawofcthulhu@gmail.com


  1. Hi, I was looking for your email address but can't seem to find it on here. What would be a good way to get in touch with you for potential polish reviews?


    1. Ooof, you would have thought a contact address would be in the ranks of importance but apparently not! My email address is clawofcthulhu [at] gmail [dot] com! I'll edit this little "About" section as well. Thanks for pointing that out and I'll be in touch real soon! <3

  2. Im also a Vancouverite . :)

    Do you have any favourite places to shop for nail polish? I have oredered from Nail Polish Canada but sometimes its nice to browse stuff on the shelf. Ive done the usual London Drugs etc etc just wondered if you had something a little more off the beaten track

    East Van

    1. Hey Sarah! Hello hello, fellow Vancouverite! :D

      I usually try and make a habit of saying where I got my polish from on my posts but I know I sometimes ramble on and leave that kind of information out, haha - I don't have any particular favourite places that I frequent, but there is a place in Brentwood Mall that has the cheapest price for OPI that I have found; it's a kids' hair salon (random, I know). You can get them for $7.99, and if you buy more than 1, they're $7.49 each. (Or they might be $7.49 and then $6.99 for multiple, I can't remember on Monday morning!) And I really hate to, but Wal-Mart is the only store that sells Hard Candy nail polish, and also one of the cheapest source for Essie (if you like that brand). Winners is another favourite of mine but it's more of a luck thing - sometimes they carry China Glaze and Zoya, and it's always a decent price tag. Asides that, I tend to be all over the place with nail polish - I've been impressed with Icing by Claire's polishes (been highlighting their "Illamasqua speckled" inspired shades for Cheap Polish Tuesday), and Urban Outfitters (although I hate the company) has some other great shades, and Deborah Lippmann dupes for a decent price tag!

      Anyway, I hope you find this somewhat useful! If you find any cool stores, let me know too! :D

  3. thanks for your info Melissa!
    I have just become a nail blog addict ...i started reading Pshiiit blog from France and thro links from there found your blog.
    Until now I never really took care of my nails but now Im cuticle oiling and using Nail Envy and my nails look great.
    I went a bit mad and orderd a whole bunch of stuff online and last night was practicing making chevron scotch tape stickers with pinking shears lol

    I will make Winners a regular stop now ..I walk past the Cambie street one all the time as I work close to there.

    cheerio! keep up the good work!


    1. Oh that's so cool that you found my blog somewhere floating on the Interwebs - I don't get many visitors so it's kind of cool that you happened to stumble on by! Cuticle oiling definitely does wonders - definitely lessens the chance of peeling and I think it makes the nails feel nice.

      I always get suckered into mass purchases with Nail Polish Canada but damn they're located in our neck of the woods and orders generally come within 24-48 hours - so incredible! Their customer service is also so awesome - I've been shopping with them for a couple of years now and they've managed to maintain such integrity.

      Happy hunting! Generally I try and check on their stock every week or two and they always have something different! :)

  4. Very cool! I'm from Vancouver too! Lovely to meet you!