Here’s the story: you’re trapped in a Top of the Lake marathon, unable to peel away from the amazingness that is Peggy Olsen with a New Zealander’s accent and Holly Hunter’s silver wig. And suddenly, you have inspiration for some new nail art. Now is the perfect time to try out that metallic sharpie nail art from Lauren Conrad’s surprisingly useful beauty website.
But! It’s 10 p.m. And you’ve had a couple Red Tail Ales. And you really should go to bed within an hour. But for the sake of nail art, you press on. Caution! Here be dragons. Specifically, the dragon that is waking up in the morning with creases all over your gorgeous nails. I’m going to teach you the steps you need to prevent this from ever happening again.
I normally wouldn’t post about nails two days in a row, but I stumbled on some amazing deals today that I couldn’t help but share. It looks like Sephora might be coming out with a new formula of nail polish, because almost all of their polishes are currently on sale.
In addition to the mad sales at Sephora, I just bought 5 Julep nail polishes for $12 total! Including shipping! Julep Nail Vernis usually go for $14 each, and they have some of the fanciest formulas out there. The polishes are 4-free, which means they don’t contain formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, toluene, or DBP. I’m on a “makeup buying break,” but Julep made an offer I couldn’t refuse (luckily it wasn’t a bloody horse head in my bed).
Whenever I see a beautiful, complex nail art tutorial, I think to myself, maybe I can do it … wait, no, who am I kidding. I’m graced with the hand-eye coordination of a drunk toddler, and so anything that involves precision work is a n- go. I can’t be the only one frustrated by fine motor skills, so I’ve decided to make a new series for all the klutzes out there who want beautiful nails but aren’t going to pony up mad ca$h at a nail art salon.
First up is flakie nail polish, my current favorite special effect nail polish. No, the polish isn’t going to cancel plans on you – quite the opposite, as it wears like iron. Flakie nail polish is named after the flakes of mylar suspended in the formula. Remember those balloons at the grocery store you always wanted your parents to get you as a kid? These nail polishes are filled with shreds of that same polyester film.
So how do you get the gorgeous duochrome effect pictured above?
I can’t remember the last time I wore matching fingers and toes (maybe I’ll use that as a future color challenge. Truly challenging for me!). It just seems like if you’ve got 20 digits, why limit yourself to only one color? Why not ten colors for ten fingers? A lot of the fun of painting my nails is choosing an interesting color combination.
If you’re too much of a klutz to handle more complicated nail art, then you can use the contrasting color combination as your own version of nail art. Let’s be real ladies, this just isn’t going to happen. Especially not on my weak-handed side. I already foresee a lot of smudging, cursing, and frustration. If you have terrible hand eye coordination like me, spare yourself the annoyance and follow this super simple tutorial.
For this extremely simple patriotic nail tutorial, all you’ll need are 4 colors. I used the same $2 Wet n Wild Saved by the Blue polish that I used in my silver glitter half moon tutorial (it’s a favorite). On top of that, I layered Wet n Wild in Bling it On. I could only find it online on eBay, but I’m sure if you look around your local drugstore, you can find it for $2.
Pro tip! I’ve seen the exact exact shade bottled in Sinful Colors. Ah ha! After a little detective work, I found it! It’s called Hottie and here’s another swatch of it. Having the same polish across brands is a surprise, but I guess at the $2 price range it makes sense.
On my toes I layered another two polishes: Sally Hansen’s Hearts on Fire (one of my favorite true reds), followed by approximately 4 coats of Milani Jewel Fx in Red. I really wanted the full Dorothy’s ruby slippers effect, which required some layering. When you layer glitter polish like it’s it’s especially important to let it dry completely between coats. Completely completely! Wait at least 15 minutes, but ideally just space it out throughout the day.
This is a great tutorial for Fourth of July or whenever you’re just feeling patriotic and classic. America!
This weekend I painted possibly my favorite-ever manicure! It’s in close competition with my New Years glitter half moon manicure. But unlike that one, this requires pretty much no skills at all! Just a wide selection of polish and a willingness to screw and unscrew a lot of caps. It was a gorgeous San Francisco spring day, almost 80 degrees, sunny, with a light wind. Spring and fall weather is usually a lot better than the foggy summers, so I wanted to celebrate it with a fun manicure.
My order of three nail polishes from Zoya has arrived, and I’m so happy with them so far. I usually go for the cheapest nail polish possible, but when I saw their crazy “3 nail polishes free (just pay S&H)” deal, I had to take advantage of it.
One shade I’ve been eyeing for a long time is Faye, which Zoya describes as “a bronzed mauve with purple and brown undertones flooded with bright gold sparkle.” I’d call it a rose gold, which shifts between gold and pink in the sunlight. Check out some swatches here.
I wore the shade on its own for a few days, but when I noticed some tip wear, I wanted to extend the look. An easy solution? Adding a contrasting french tip. I love the look of mixed metals, so I decided to choose an opaque silver.
I’ve always been a fan of galaxy nails, but I was worried it would be too complicated. I have pretty terrible fine motor skills, which is one reason I’m drawn to nail art – I like the challenge. Luckily, this nail art is much easier than it first appears. The only special tool you’ll need is a makeup sponge, which you likely already have in your cosmetics kit. If not you can get a dozen for a $1 or so at your local drugstore.