ncu - rainbow watermarble | @bulletnails
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rainbow water marble

this is not a rainbow water marble. i’m not amazing at them and didn’t have enough time to deal with one right now, so i thought i would see if i could do it without water. or nail polish for that matter…

i have had some really good luck using gel pens and i wondered if i could do a fake watermarble with them. (nope – but it’s still pretty)

ncu - rainbow watermarble | @bulletnails

i started with a white base coat and glossy topcoat. then i just started doing concentric flower / shamrock / watermarble-ish shapes. and it was SO ugly. i don’t have a picture of that, because it was so bad i expected to go wash it off right away. but when i was done and had spent so much time on it i decided to try one more thing. i used a silicone nail brush to blend / scrape the paint around. and this is what happened.

ncu - rainbow watermarble | @bulletnails

i like it. i think the pens didn’t dry because of the glossy topcoat so i had a lot of time to work with them. i did put a topcoat over the pens too, but it did smear it a bit. i think the key there is to just put it on really thick, so the brush never gets too close to the nail (and wet ink on top of it).

ncu - rainbow watermarble | @bulletnails

colors used: sinful colors snow me white, color technik glitter gel pens.

ncu - anti-valentine hearts | @bulletnails
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red & black hobbies

i like this one. i did struggle a little bit – again i think the prompt is too constricting. but i think i worked it out ;)

ncu - anti-valentine hearts | @bulletnails

i don’t know that i’d consider playing cards a hobby of mine but i do really enjoy it. from super simple to super fast – i grew up playing cards with my family. and i still really enjoy a good game night!

ncu - anti-valentine hearts | @bulletnails

colors used: sinful colors snow me white, color technik glitter gel pens.

ncu - anti-valentine hearts | @bulletnails
ncu - winter animals | @bulletnails
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winter animals

okay. this one is lame. i couldn’t think of anything to do and so just started by painting my nails white. i wore that around for a few days while i was trying to think of an idea. and this just kept coming into my head:

postcard

so that’s kinda what happened. i left my nails white. and they’re winter animals in a snowstorm ;)

ncu - gold snowflakes | @bulletnails
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gold snowflakes

okay. new year. i’m gonna try and do this nail thing again! the first prompt for nail crazies 2018 challenge was gold snowflakes. i learned this while watching the santa clause (1-3) over the holidays and it made me think of the snow-globes in those movies. so my nails are representing gold snowflakes in a just-turned-over snow globe :)

ncu - gold snowflakes | @bulletnails

colors used: sinful colors tokyo pearl, pop gold glitz, and sally hanson twinkle toes.

ncu - neon | @bulletnails
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ncu – neon

this past weekend was pride here in sf. it was very easy working some neon into my mani to fit in!

did one hand stripey, like the lgbtq flag. (you can see i added glitter from the first pic to this one. obviously it wasn’t done until there was glitter!)

ncu - neon | @bulletnails

 

and the other is a fun bubbly rainbow :)

ncu - neon | @bulletnails

colors used: sinful colors snow me white, wet n wild red a good book, pop ablaze, model’s own luis lemon, salon perfect loopy limebermuda baby, torrid purple irridecent, spoiled shaken snow globe.

ncu - fruit | @bulletnails
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ncu – fruits

it has been a struggle to paint my nails recently. luckily i had a friend over a few nights ago and we had a mani party :) we may have been consuming adult beverages, so i give myself a pass if my idea is a) unoriginal and b) not done well.

if you don’t look too closely i actually really like them :) it was funny to choose watermelon as my fruit of choice because it’s probably one of my least favorite fruits (and my number one least favorite flavoring for anything!). but maybe it’s that half moon shape that made me think it would pair well with nails :)

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26gnai – water

this was how i painted my nails when i went to hawaii! i knew i would be in the water (and at the beach) a lot, so what better way to fit in than with water nails ;)

i started with a gradient. easy-peasy. then came the part i’ve had trouble with before – the spritzy-water-marble look that i wanted to do a few weeks ago for the hippy/boho prompt (to make it look like turquoise).

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one of my problems back then was that i didn’t own hairspray. which is probably a strange thing to say. but i don’t use it. my hair is super thin and straight and hairspray just doesn’t do much for me. but for the sake of my nails i went out and bought some – its outrageous that the 2.something ounce travel bottle is the same price as the 10 ounce full size bottle. so i have to choose between wasting money (sm btl) or wasting product (big btl). booo.

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somehow i only took some photos of the final mani once i was on vacation. and then only with my gopro. which is cool because it’s water nails in the water, but not very focused or hi-res… oh well. i don’t even care because i was in hawaii!!

colors used: femme fatale alice, mentality gumdrop, essie no more film

 

ncu - delicate print | @bulletnails
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ncu -delicate print

ncu - delicate print | @bulletnailsi love the way this mani turned out! i only wish i hadn’t used a peel off base coat – so it would have lasted longer!

i had originally tried to do a stamp. that’s the only way i can actually image something on my nails being a delicate print! i tried and failed. i can’t seem to get past the point of getting the polish from the stamp to my nail/silicone mat. i’ve tried with a ton of different polishes and it’s just too inconsistent. i’m super jealous of everyone who can do it, and because of them, i won’t give up! i’m sure after so many fails, i’ll eventually get the hang of it. right?

ncu - delicate print | @bulletnails

but out of my stamping failure came a glitter pen mandala to the rescue! i was inspired by sealemon’s mandala journal doodle and figured that was something i could handle.

i used my new favorite, useful-for-every-application pens from color technik and just started making patterns.

i really like the texture of the polish underneath. i’m always a fan of something a little different, and that texture is just enough to set this apart from the usual high-gloss.

ncu - delicate print | @bulletnailscolors used: sally hansen deluxecolor technik glitter gel pens.

26gnai - yellow + 1 bold color | @bulletnails
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26gnai – yellow + 1 bold color

once again i’m ho-hum about this prompt. i don’t know if my being uninspired is due to me (there’s a lot going on in my life right now) or the prompts.

either way, i don’t like this mani – but i took the time to do it, so figured i might as well post it. i had a hard time with bold color with yellow – because yellow is such a bold color. i typically like to pair it with muted or neutral colors (grey is my fave with yellow) so that the yellow is the bold color.

26gnai - yellow + 1 bold color | @bulletnails

i thought purple would be good because it’s opposite on the color wheel. and i thought the chrome style would make it stand out more. it didn’t. i probably should have used the purple from my watercolor nails instead. oh well!

colors used: claire’s tropic thunder, sally hansen mellow yellow, pop gold glitz.

ncu - watercolor | @bulletnails
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ncu – watercolor

i’m getting back into painting my nails. i don’t know what it is, but i have just been uninspired the past few weeks. i have been very busy and i did go on vacation, but i’ve just been dreading the thought of having to paint my nails. i that’s part of the problem, that i feel i have to do it. but i also think i’m just uninspired by a lot of the prompts this year. when i read through the list i just wasn’t that excited about any of them… but i’m going to challenge myself to find a way to make them exciting. either by trying new stuff or being weird or whatever. we’ll see if that works ;)

this week’s prompt was watercolor nails. i have seen this technique done quite a few times and it’s always pretty nice, but i’ve never tried it myself. it’s not hard, but it definitely took me a bit to get the hang of it.

if you don’t know, to do this style, all you do is put a drop of paint on your nail then use nail polish remover / acetone on a brush to thin in out and spread it around. here’s a good video to see what i mean. i found that the more liquid you use the better it works. i was worried that the acetone would just take all the color off and i would be left with nothing on my nail so i didn’t use much at first. but the dryer my brush was, the more i was just daubing the paint around rather than it spreading out on it’s own like watercolor.

ncu - watercolor | @bulletnails

notice the purple in the above photo – that was the first color i did. i feel like you can see that i sort of just pushed the color around (look at the middle finger and thumb especially). you’ll also notice how bright and vivid the colors are. that does not say watercolor (to me at least). i used bright colors thinking that a lot of the color was going to disappear once i added the acetone. well, yes and no. the purple we’ve already mentioned, but even the pink and yellow, as i started to get the way of it, still didn’t lighten up that much. i don’t know if i still wasn’t doing it right or if it’s the colors of the polish i used are too bright or too pigmented. but don’t worry – i had a solution!

ncu - watercolor | @bulletnails

i just painted over them with a fairly transparent sparkly white. and voilà! watercolor colors ;)

colors used: models own pukka purplepink punch, luis lemon, sinful colors social ladder.

rupaul's drag race S09E05 | night of 1000 mandonnas part two: valentina's "sex book" runway look
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RuPolished – Snatch Game

halleloo i’m back. i have had naked nails for the past two weeks while i’ve been on vacation and then working 14 hours days. sometimes you just don’t have time for the upkeep…

this week’s drag race was snatch game. something we do every season, and every season at least one girl still seems surprised she has to do an impression. anyway, there were definitely some stand-outs, both in the good category and the bad. obviously the best was alexis – girl had liza down pat!

on to the runway: “night of 1000 madonna’s, part II” – except we gotta minus a few because somehow there were still repeats!

how has no one done either of these classic 80’s looks? they’re still what i picture in my head when i think of madonna. maybe everyone figures someone else is going to do it so they pick something else? i feel like after the kimono-no-no that if i were told there was going to be a madonna challenge i would bring two outfits.

anyway, even though there were repeats there were some great looks. farrah’s was amazing and trinity looked great but when valentina walked out on stage i just died. i lived! and then i died. i thought it was a clever, beautiful, tongue-in-cheek choice and she was serving that body-ody-ody.

rupaul's drag race S09E05 | night of 1000 mandonnas part two: valentina's "sex book" runway look

so that’s the outfit i chose for my nails. one because it super simple and that is my favorite thing ever. two because it was so smart. and three because i’ve lived with naked nails for the past two weeks – of course they’d get censored sooner or later ;)

26gnai - pastel bold gradient | @bulletnails
rupaul's drag race S09E03 | trinity taylor "princess aquapussy" inspired mani
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RuPolished – Draggily Ever After

i knew the second trinity taylor walked out onto the stage what my mani this week was going to be. her princess name was very james bond, but her outfit was all me! i love mermaids so much – and that crown! ugh heaven.

rupaul's drag race S09E03 | trinity taylor "princess aquapussy"

just look at it. amazing.

rupaul's drag race S09E03 | trinity taylor "princess aquapussy"

she did a reveal – going from a mermaid dress to a swimsuit. i have mixed feelings about reveals on the runway. i feel like they’re on stage for 10 seconds in their first outfit then rip it off and are in something else the rest of the time. why even bother. but i did like both of her looks. i would wear the gown, well anywhere. and i’m going on vacation soon and really want the swimsuit for my lazy days on the beach!

so for my nails i played with some sculpey and created a few stars. i tried to make them starfish (longer points) but at the size i needed i just couldn’t stretch them out without pulling off one or more points. i think it’s because i typically run hot and so my warm hands were making the clay super malleable. i think i need one of those frozen tables they have at coldstone if i’m going to continue working with tiny intricate clay sculptures ;)

rupaul's drag race S09E03 | trinity taylor "princess aquapussy" inspired mani

i painted my nails in a vertical gradient (which i’m not sure i’ve done before) in three shades of green/blue to mimic trinity’s shimmery fabric. i did my thumbnail pink to represent her sassy starfish companion.

rupaul's drag race S09E03 | trinity taylor "princess aquapussy" inspired mani

lastly i glued on all the clay pieces and painted them with a glittery top coat and called it a day!

the only thing i wish was different about this mani is the middle color in the gradient. i liked it at the time but now that i compare my pictures to trinity’s outfit i realize there was a lot bigger contrast between the light and the dark colors. that doesn’t make me like it any less though :)

colors used: nicole iceberg lotus, femme fatale jasmine, salon perfect loopy lime, rimmel london (pink – no label). 

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ncu – hippy / boho

i really like these! i think i would dress in the “boho” style if i ever wore anything besides my trusty jeans-tank-cardigan wardrobe. there’s so much to love about the boho style (as long as you ignore the annoying festival people). there’s a lot of mix and matching, flowers, jewel tones, lace.

so i tried to put all of that on my nails! for all of my nails i used my print-at-home temporary tattoo paper to get the details that my hands could never provide ;) my pinky is lace, and i really wanted it to be white lace, but a printer doesn’t print white so i tried to do a reverse and print the nude color. it’s not quite the right color but still kinda cute. then my ring finger has the ubiquitous gold found in all boho fashion, paired with a mandala (which i am super obsessed with and am considering getting one as a real tattoo somewhere). middle finger is a really pretty pattern that just said boho to me, not sure why. then there are some daisy’s on my pointer and turquoise on my thumb.

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there are some great nail tutorials out there (left by kristen @ lacquerstyle) to your nails to look like legit turqouise stones. just by using plastic wrap and a spritzy water marble technique that looks super easy.

i will try that some day, but as i was planning this mani i discovered 1: i don’t have a good turquoise colored polish and 2: i don’t own hairspray. so until later on that one…

colors used: wet n wild french white crème, sally hansen golden-i.

rupaul's drag race S09E02 | cynthia lee fontaine "white party" mani
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RuPolished – She Done Already Done Brought It On

yay cynthia’s back! i told my friend last week that whoever the returning queen is will already have a huge advantage just because no one on this season so far stood out. and while that is true (and cynthia (and her cucu) is the biggest personality on the show now) i do think the other queens stepped it up this week.

i do think quite a few of the “white party” outfits were pretty great: i really liked aja’s with the mask (i wish she had kept it on the whole time though and stayed in the creepy hanibal lecter character through the entire runway), i liked farah’s showgirl-mirrored-feather ensemble, and i loved valentina’s wedding dress (even though it was a slightly obvious choice). i really think, even though everyone was clocking her for being a newbie, she’s the one to watch.

i’m also relieved that they’re back to the regular runway set – i would have died if they kept the high-school-gym-turned-pageant-show set they had last week.

rupaul's drag race S09E02 | cynthia lee fontaine "white party" mani

so my nail’s are painted for ms. fontaine’s white party look. 1: because it was gorgeous and sparkly and super classy and i’m glad she’s back (although it would have be the best if it was shangela again!) and 2: because i had no idea how i would paint some of these other plain white outfits onto my nails!

colors used: wet n wild french white crème, sinful colors tokyo pearl.

26gnai - green freestyle | @bulletnails
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26gnai – green freestyle

for my green freestyle the first thing i thought of was a mermaid tail. so i gathered up all my green polishes and just started dotting away. that’s kinda all there is to this one…

26gnai - green freestyle | @bulletnails

i really like these nails close up!

26gnai - green freestyle | @bulletnails

colors used: blackheart beauty green/ylw shimmer, mentality pastillesourball, sally hansen sparkling water, kbshimmer pt young thing, opi green on the runway, sinful colors mint apple.

rupaul's drag race S09E0a | Farrah Moan (un)inspired mani
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RuPolished – Oh My Gaga

i finally just saw episode one of rupaul’s drag race season 9! honestly this whole thing has been a let down. it starts out with the show now being on vh1 and the fact that it pretty much does not exist online ANYWHERE!! tv networks need to realize that many people are moving away from cable, and if they want our business then they’re going to have to make show available to us (i pay for 3 different tv services and am willing to sit through commercials for the many networks that provide their content for free).

anyway – i finally found a friend with cable and it seems i will be bugging him every week to get my fix.

the other big disappointment was the show itself. i know it’s early, but i didn’t really like any of the workroom or runway outfits (btw – that new runway is awful! where are they going to lip-synch for their lives?!) and i didn’t really like any of the girls.

i’m going to keep watching and hopefully it’ll get better, but i’m worried – i watched america’s next top model for 22 seasons and when (for the 23rd) it moved to vh1, the set-up, judges and contestents were so… blah… that i didn’t even finish the season. i hope and pray that this same fate won’t befall drag race.

anyway, rant over. kind of. the design i did on my nails was farrah moan’s workroom entry outfit. i chose this one because (besides being easy to paint) i both liked and disliked it. i liked it because it’s just a chain and panties (i liked the potential here). but i disliked it because it could have been so much more. and why on earth did you wear tighty whities?!?! it either needed to be nude panties so it looked like she was completely nekked or a fun color or lace or something to be sexy. this just looked like she stole some little boys underwear from the laundromat on her way in…

ncu - sweets | @bulletnails
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ncu – sweets

so i gave up “sweets” for the month of february. just to see if i had the willpower to do so, to see if after not eating them if i would still crave them, and hopefully to loose some weight. well i did, i still do (but not as much) and i did. so success. a month later and it’s easier to not have sweets very often. i have been able to choose healthier snacks (apples are my current favorite) and hopefully i will be able to keep up with this.

during this no-sweets-february – chocolate was the hardest thing to live without. so i am paying homage to all the chocolate that i did not eat in february, and hopefully nails-that-look-like-chocolate will be enough to not eat it too much now either ;)

i used three different colors on top, i was thinking white chocolate caramel and dark chocolate. and the base would be milk chocolate.

okay, i’ve got to stop writing about this before i talk myself into finding a candybar…

colors used: homemade brown frankenpolish, essie partners in crime, mentality marmalade, sinful colors social ladder.

26gnai - spring animals | @bulletnails
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26gnai – spring animals

this week’s theme is spring animals. at a loss for something to paint i googled it. and ohmygoodness i died looking at all the super cute baby animals that popped up on my screen!!

unfortunately i knew i would never be able to do justice hand painting these cute little furry friends, and i’m assuming there will be a lot of stamping going on this week, but i neither have stamps that apply nor the skills to make it happen.

so i stuck with what i’m comfortable with – simplifying! each nail is a different baby animal. can you tell what they are?

Continue reading

ncu - rainbow | @bulletnails
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ncu – rainbow

i’ve been thinking outside the box lately with my nail techniques! this week for the rainbow theme i used gel pens for my mani!

ncu - rainbow | @bulletnails

and it worked SO well. i’m still kind of surprised they 1) drew on my nails (actually on the peel of base coat), 2) that they didn’t completely wipe off or smear when i put a top coat over them, and 3) that they stayed on for a few days!

i love the control that i got by using pens. i love the colors. i love the glitter.

looks like my bullet journal isn’t going to be the only thing i use these pens for now! expect to see them again in the future!

ncu - rainbow | @bulletnails

sorry there are so many exclamation points here – i’m just super pumped how these turned out :)

ncu - rainbow | @bulletnails

i like the rainbow pattern that i did on my non-accent nails the best. i like how the edges are dark and the center is light. but i did the opposite on my ring finger just to see what it would look like. i don’t like it as much but i do like that you can see the chevron pattern better.

colors used: color technik glitter gel pens.

26gnai - mixed tape | @bulletnails
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26gnai – mixed tape mani

today i was feeling the most literal! i couldn’t think of any ideas for this challenge then suddenly it hit me – be weird ;) i had 4 out of 5 of these tapes already sitting on my desk from other projects and i just figured, why not!

26gnai - mixed tape | @bulletnails

this is not a lasting mani. i had to press on my nails in between every photo for some of the tapes to even look like they were stuck down. the duck tape in particular wouldn’t stay stuck. which surprised me because it has the stickiest adhesive.

26gnai - mixed tape | @bulletnails

the one with the least sticky adhesive, painter’s tape, actually stayed in place the best. huh. the electrical tape stayed fairly well too – i think because it’s so stretchy it can handle the curve of my nails better than the thicker duck tape.

26gnai - mixed tape | @bulletnails

colors used: masking tape, painter’s tape, unicorn duck tape, rainbow glitter washi tape, electrical tape.

ncu - red & black | @bulletnails
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ncu – red & black

when i decided to do this playing card mani for the black and red challenge i didn’t realize i would struggle so much with the little stems on the spade and club. tricky little buggars!

ncu - red & black | @bulletnails

i think they ended up looking okay, maybe a little out of proportion, but i can deal with that! i do really like this mani, if for nothing else, because of the combo of matte and shiny. that was unintentional, just the polishes i ended up using. i didn’t do a top coat because i really liked the contrast.

ncu - red & black | @bulletnails

colors used: sinful colors snow me white, style me up! black, wet n wild red red.

26gnai - blue floral | @bulletnails
ncu - anti-valentine | @bulletnails
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ncu – anti-valentine

he loves me… he loves me not…

that’s the theme of my “anti-valentine’s” prompt today. i don’t love valentine’s day, but i also don’t hate it. like most other holidays in my life i’m indifferent to it (holidays really only get my approval if i get the day off of work and/or get to dress up!). so when thinking of what to paint i did some google searching. there’s a lot of valentine’s day hate out there! dang. a lot of it is broken hearts and taking-back-the-day-from-corporate-greed-mongers-who-are-guilting-people-into-sales-based-on-chocolatey-professions-of-love-all-while-alienating-single-people.

valentine’s day is doing the most!

so i thought of something that is still cute but could potentially be anti: the hope of true love through divine intervention and plucking of flower petals. so each of my fingers is less one flower petal. and just like when doing this in real life the outcome is based on where you start and where you end. is first plucked petal a “he loves me” or a “he loves me not”? so this could either be a manicure in favor of valentines day or against. ;)

ncu - anti-valentine | @bulletnails

for the mani itself i started with one of my favorite sparkly holo’s as a base coat and on my silcone mat did a gradient from yellow to orange. when that dried i cut it up (above pic) and glued them on to my nails. i should have tried to alternate the colors more, but i thought the layering would make each petal stand out more than it did.

colors used: kbshimmer pt. young thing, wet n wild french white crème, sally hansen mellow yellow, pop ablaze.

26gnai - black & white | @bulletnails
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26gnai – black and white valentines

there have been so many just color prompts lately that i misread this as one of those. so this mani has nothing to do with valentines. just the black and white part.

i’ve seen a lot of drip mani’s lately and it looks SO easy and SO pretty that i couldn’t resist. i debated doing this for the red and pink prompt (as you can see in the photo below), but i decided i liked the contrast in the black and white more (and it looks more like geodes – which is cool!).

26gnai - black & white | @bulletnails

you can see that i used a bunch of cut up plastic lids (from panera broccoli cheddar soup -my fave!!) as my art palettes. i tried doing this initially on some plastic plates, but i quickly realized that a) you can’t do more designs until the first one is dry and b) that for some reason the polish did not want to come off of these plates. so i dug through my recycling and found two lids that cut up into nice sizes.

26gnai - black & white | @bulletnails

i only made eight of these but a few were large enough to cut up and use for multiple smaller nails. a few i flipped over and used the underside to break up the patterns too.

i really love how these turned out! it was fun experimenting with this – the order that i dropped the colors on the palette, the amount i used of each, how much i tilted and rotated the whole thing. some that i wasn’t too excited for on the palette are some of my favorites once i put them on my nails.

26gnai - black & white | @bulletnails

colors used: wet n wild black crème, spoiled black mamba, sally hansen celeb city, sinful colors snow me white.

ncu - blue & white | @bulletnails
26gnai - red & pink | @bulletnails
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26gnai – red and pink

it’s way too early for valentine’s, although try telling that to target etc! but when i see red and pink together i can’t help but think of valentines. it’s the only reason i combine the two. so i got a bit of early valentine’s celebration in today with this mani.

26gnai - red & pink | @bulletnails

i really like how this turned out – it’s a cute simple pattern that was pretty easy to do. i started with the base coat of gold + glitter on three fingers, hoping to make it not too overwhelmingly red and pink.

then i made two rows of double dots, one pink one red and connected them with a little triangle of the same color with a small paint brush. i did my thumb first and learned the spacing, therefore like my ring and pinky fingers a lot better ;)

26gnai - red & pink | @bulletnails

i’ve also gotten in the habit of painting my “painting” hand with something that matches but is not as fancy, just so that while i’m wearing it throughout the week it matches when people see my hands. mostly i’ve just used the same base coat as my fancier design.

26gnai - red & pink | @bulletnails

this is what my right / “painting” hand looks like this week. this would have been cute for the challenge too actually. i haven’t been posting pics of this other hand because they’re not as interesting, but i thought it’d be fun to share that this is what i do – instead of leaving it blank or painting it some random way or spending a ton of time and energy to make it look the same (except worse because as ambidextrous as i may be, i’m still much better as this with my right hand).

26gnai - red & pink | @bulletnails

to be honest, the reason i showed my right hand was to give context to this photo. i’m so in love with this perfect tiny little heart that i managed to make on my thumb!

colors used: sally hansen fuchsia powerred carpetwedding glitters, pop gold glitz.

ncu - gold & silver | @bulletnails
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ncu – gold & silver

really wanted to use some gold foil that i had laying around my house for this prompt. i’d never done it before so wasn’t sure how it would work. gold foil is sort of hard to work with but i really love the shiny real gold look that it creates. i’ve used it on multiple occasions for crafty stuff and really want to find a way to incorporate it into some of my furniture!

ncu - gold & silver | @bulletnails

for the mani i place the foil onto the slightly tacky silver layer. i had already cut the foil to the V shape and after it was stuck on just had to clean up the edges. because it’s so thin it ripped fairly easily, and even the simple act of pressing it into the polish caused tears and wrinkles. so i decided to cover the edges and create a design with some striping tape. it also adds a nice pop of color.

ncu - gold & silver | @bulletnails

once i put a top coat on over the design and foil it got really crinkly. i had a feeling this would happen and have read other similar reviews. but the striping tape peels off to easily if not topcoated. so i went with it. it doesn’t look bad but i really wanted the smooth “gold brick” look.

colors used: sally hansen celeb city & essie matte about you.

26gnai - new year | @bulletnails
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26gnai – new year new you

i’m not really in to new year’s resolutions. and “new year new you” doesn’t really speak to me. i’m actually really happy with who i am – and i feel like the resolution thing every year just makes people unhappy with themselves. people are constantly asking what are you going to change about yourself this year. why do we do that? only focusing on what needs to be changed or “fixed” instead of celebrating what is good leads to bad feelings about ourselves and insecurities.

so once again, this new year, there will be no new me. i am going to continue to love who i am. if there is something i think i need to change, i will work on it but i will not dwell on it. (end: new year’s resolution rant!)

26gnai - new year | @bulletnails

on to my nails – i did a new years celebration theme. i think this chunky glitter is so cute and it reminds me of fireworks and bubbles – both which remind me of new years celebrations. as far as the base coat goes, i just think black and gold together are super classy!

26gnai - new year | @bulletnails

colors used: wet n wild black crème, kbshimmer toast-ess with the mostest, essie matte about you.

ncu - ugly sweater | @bulletnails
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ncu – ugly sweater

i had an “ugly christmas sweater” party a few weekends ago. i was really pumped to make my own sweater. i bought a bunch of gaudy stuff from michael’s and was ready to go to town and make this the most ridiculous sweater ever. but then i guess my designer brain took over. i made the sweater while watching christmas movies, only half paying attention to each task. once a few hours had gone by and i had glued so many sequins i could no longer see straight, i took a look at my “ugly” sweater and it was way to orderly and kinda cute! dangit! i guess that’s the designer in me – i can’t seem to make things ugly ;)

so my nails ended up not-so-ugly to match my not-so-ugly sweater! very simple, as usual, but i just tried to get the basics of my sweater onto my nails.

ncu - ugly sweater | @bulletnails

ncu - ugly sweater | @bulletnails

i really love the plaid ribbon accent nail. i used a peel off base coat like modge podge (it’s practically just elmer’s glue anyway). i applied the base coat and stuck a piece of ribbon on while wet. then did another coat right over the top. once it dried i trimmed it up and applied a top coat. and voila – holiday ribbon nail art :) and it’s so cute close up!!

ncu - ugly sweater | @bulletnails

colors used: wet n wild black créme, sally hansen golden-ired carpet, and celeb city.

26gnai - pastel christmas | @bulletnails
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26gnai – pastel christmas

i think today is proof that i should give up on stamping. i just can’t seem to figure out the technique! i want to be able to do it so bad, but i never seem to have any success. plus this happened:

stamper woes @bulletnails

i don’t even know how! it happened before i even started stamping – so i can’t blame my she-hulk super strength on anger and frustration! this is also the first time i even used my cute clear stamper. womp womp.

anyway, i had the thought of doing christmas presents for my pastel theme. i wanted something matchey yet knew i was going to do skittles so nothing too complicated. i used one pastel color per nail. then did a silver stamp print to represent different wrapping papers. then added a matching neon color on top as ribbon.

26gnai - pastel christmas | @bulletnails

i like how they look. the only thing i would change if i could is my stamping skills ;) and to have mixed the yellow with white to make it more pastel. once i put the neon yellow on top as ribbon, it didn’t even show up so i had to paint over it with white :)

colors used: sally hansen mint sorbetmellow yellowbubblegum pinklacey lilacbabe blueceleb cityposh plum, salon perfect loopy limefired up fuschiabermuda baby, and sinful colors snow me white.

ncu - candy cane | @bulletnails
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ncu – candy cane

i did not go with my first instinct on this one. the first thing i think of when i hear the words candy cane is the movie joy ride. it’s such a great movie ;) and so freaking creepy! i really wanted to do something with that movie as my manicure today. but anything i could think of was way too complex for me to deal with right now (or ever). my ideas were the two-way radio, a guy missing his jaw, a semi-truck, a cornfield, paul walker and steve zahn’s butts…

but alas, without being able to do it justice, i decided to go with the more obvious interpretation of candy cane.

but to keep it weird – i tried to make it look like a candy cane that had been sucked on for a while. it’s not as clean as i would like, but i still think the concept is fun :) i painted stripes to match a giant 2lb. candy cane i have at home and then brushed and sponged on the base color again over the tips.

colors used: sinful colors bubbly, wet n wild red a good book, blackheart green yellow shimmer.

26gnai - holiday preparations | @bulletnails
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26gnai – christmas preparations

this one was easy! the thing i dread most about getting out my christmas decorations are the tangled mess of lights! no matter how careful i am when putting them away, when it comes time to pull them out they’re in one giant knot. i think i have mischievous little elves that come in and tangle them just to test my christmas cheer ;)

26gnai - holiday preparations | @bulletnails

i don’t put up much decorations for christmas so fortunately i don’t get too stressed about de-balling the lights. there’s no tree or anything anymore, i just can’t justify storing a fake tree for 10 months just to have it out for two. but my first year in san francisco was the first year i ever got a real tree. it was beautiful and smelled great and i never wanted to take it down. but then i waited too long and the people who pop around and pick up all the trees from the curb stopped coming around. so i got a friend with a hand saw and we chopped my tree up into little bits that we threw out the window and stuffed into my (and my neighbors’) compost bin. that was a huge ordeal that i haven’t been looking forward to repeating. so this year i have planned to make a christmas tree silhouette out of poster board to put in my window. i’ve done something similar for halloween but thought it’d be cute as a tree with little lights on it. i’m hoping to get it done this weekend! if not it might be too late to bother…

the dots/lights on my nails were made with a dotting tool. then i painted in some quick lines to represent the cord (always in dark green!). i went over some of the dots again then put a dab of glow in the dark polish on each and voilà – christmas light nails. i don’t have any pics of the glow in the dark – i have never figured out the trick to photographing that, plus the dots of light are pretty small so even in real life are hard to see. but i know they glow and thats really all that matters!

colors used: essie cocktails & coconuts, models own luis lemon, models own toxic apple, mentality gumdrop, orly bring me her heart, blackheart green yellow shimmer.

ncu - holiday movie | @bulletnails
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ncu – holiday movie

i’m a little late with this one because i went home for a week and a half over thanksgiving to see my family. it was a really nice vacation (cold – but i just stayed inside!).

this mani is inspired by i’ll be home for christmas. probably a not-so-famous christmas movie for most people. but i watched this so many times growing up, probably because i had a huge crush on jonathan taylor thomas! but now it’s part of my christmas tradition.

ncu - holiday movie | @bulletnails

i have always loved the scene with the santa 5k. as a kid that was such a wild idea, to see all these different santas running around the city. now that i live in sf, where there is an annual santacon, i miss the idyllic (and sober) version from the movie.

ncu - holiday movie | @bulletnails

since i ran out of time i decided that my nails would just be ten little santa hats – i guess sort of clustered like they are in the movie…

colors used: sally hansen red carpet, sinful colors  snow me white.

26gnai - winter warmth | @bulletnails
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26gnai – winter warmth

i was trying to think back to when i lived somewhere with an actual winter, to remember what would warm me up. i thought of blankets, fireplaces, my mom sitting on my toes and then i remembered hot chocolate. i haven’t had hot chocolate in probably years – it doesn’t really get cold enough in san francisco to ever think to buy any.

dang now i want some! but as far as the nails go – i’m not excited about it. it looks like an anime cyclops to me! i needed to add a cup handle but didn’t realize it when painting. so here it is photoshopped:
26gnai - winter warmth | @bulletnails

that looks silly – but that’s definitely what it was missing!

colors used: sinful colors snow me white, orly magic mirror, essie partner in crime.

ncu - fall foliage | @bulletnails
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ncu – fall foliage

this was a simple fan brush manicure. i haven’t actually done one before but it ended up really nice. the gold really sets it off.

ncu - fall foliage | @bulletnails

there’s not much to say about this design… i don’t know why i’ve never done this style before but i will definitely do it again :)

ncu - fall foliage | @bulletnails

colors used: orly bring me her heart, opi green on the runway, essie partner in crime, sally hansen wedding glitters.

26gnai - black base | @bulletnails
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26gnai – black base

i’m going to start by apologizing: i’m sorry but this is not a happy post. feel free to skip to the photo (after that is were i get back to nail business).

but things suck right now. hard. i’m sad, embarrassed, angry, ashamed, confused. what happened tuesday was a failure of the system. people were told to be scared. i guess it’s not surprising that they ended up scared. scared enough to vote for hatred. scared enough to look past all the proven bad behavior and still want to follow.

and now, we’re being bombarded with stories of bullies (on both sides, but mainly directed at minorities). one day after the election and people’s better selves have gone into hibernation. people believe they are now free to treat others in atrocious and disgusting ways.

my only silver lining is that hillary actually won the popular vote. not by much (3-4 hundred thousand, depending on which source you look at), but i have to hold on to the fact that most people didn’t want trump. that does little good for this country, but restores my faith in humanity a bit at least. but who knows, maybe the “electors” will use their legal rights to change their vote and fix this error. i’m not holding my breath though – only 3 electors have changed their vote in the past 30 years (although if we go back further we see many more people with minds of their own: in 1832 32 electors changed their votes, 1836 there were 23 and in 1872 there were 63!). read more about this at fairvote.com and watch the video above to see why this system no longer works.

26gnai - black base | @bulletnails

so nails… when i originally read this prompt my plan was to do rainbow stripes on top of a black base. i was in a hopeful, optimistic mood. no longer. i am in mourning. my country is in mourning. so my nails reflect that. i did a matte and shiny combo of the american flag (sorry it’s not super accurate, still trying to get better at small details).

i love the matte/shiny look but i had a dickens of a time trying to photograph it! i got the best results using a flash – it lit up the matte part while reflecting off the shiny, hopefully making it clear whats going on. i don’t typically use a flash because it makes everything look so washed out. but i took the photos into photoshop and added a little color back to my skin (i’m not a zombie i swear!)

colors used: style me up black, sally hansen invisible.

ncu - coffee | @bulletnails
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ncu – coffee

i’ve decided to join another nail art challenge (since crumpets an every other week challenge this year) that will happen on opposite weeks. so now i will have a challenge every friday. as worried as i am about finding time for it, i think this new challenge (nail crazies unite) has some themes that speak to me a little more so hopefully will get my creative juices flowing.

ncu - coffee | @bulletnails

anyway this past friday was their first prompt. and having just been accepted i did one today! the theme is coffee. i can only drink decaf because caffeine gives me migraines and what really is the point of coffee if not caffeine. so i don’t really drink it. but when i do it’s such a light shade of brown that some people wonder if there’s actually any coffee in it.

ncu - coffee | @bulletnails

ncu - coffee | @bulletnails

so that’s where my design came from. the amounts of ingredients i use when having a cup of coffee. it kinda reminds me of an infographic – i’ve seen some really cool ones for cocktail ingredients done this way.

i think this is a really fun & funny way to make a coffee mani. i love that it’s super not obvious that it’s coffee :)

colors used: sinful colors tokyo pearl, essie partner in crime, sally hansen pearly whites, opi muppets world tour, and kiss spa10 silver glitter.

galaxy nails | @bulletnails
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galaxy all the things!

this past weekend was halloween and dia de los muertos – my two favorite holidays (why are they within 3 days of each other?!) i didn’t really do much for either this year, but i got dressed up :) at work on friday, i wore this super cute tardis dress. i’ve had it for a while but i haven’t worn it yet (the tulle makes me feel like i’m going to prom and the design, while super cute, doesn’t scream everyday wear). to finish the look i galaxied my nails and some $5 goodwill shoes :)

i used the same nail polish to do the shoes that i used for my nails. goodwill is great for stuff like this – i had no idea how the nail polish would react with the material of the shoes and didn’t want to ruin any good shoes. but they turned out so great! i’m going to wear them on the regular now, well as regular as i wear any heels (which is hardly ever).

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they’re just so cute! i’m curious how they’ll hold up in the long run. i had no problems wearing them around all day, no chipping or flaking off. hopefully that’s a good sign :)

and then right after halloween was dia de los muertos. i didn’t go out but i did a galaxy sugar skull face paint. i really like it – i couldn’t get the colors to show up as well on my face as they do on my nails (and the shoes) though.

i think the pictures wash the colors out more than in real life, but it’s okay because i had fun doing it. even though i didn’t go out to celebrate i really wanted to feel connected to the holiday and spending some time on artwork was a good way to do it. although, it’s an interesting experience to work on your makeup for 2-3 hours and then hop in the shower and wash it all off.

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colors used: wet n wild black créme, mentality gumdrop, kbshimmer hookah-smoking caterpillar, models own aqua violet, salon perfect fired up fuchsia, sinful colors tokyo pearl, wet n wild kaleidoscope, sally hansen glare necessities.

26gnai - halloween | @bulletnails
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26gnai – halloween in the wrong colors

i’m struggling with feeling excited about any of the prompts this round. they’re just not speaking to me. they’re not inspiring me. like this one. “halloween in the wrong colors.” what are the wrong colors? i feel like halloween is the holiday with the least strict color code to start with (sure orange and black, but yellow, purple, green, dark blue etc are all typical too). it’s not like christmas (red green and maybe white), valentine’s day (red/pink) or fourth of july (red white and blue) etc.

so instead of exploding my brain trying to think of what to do, i decided to choose a recognizable halloween character and do my typical simplification to it. oh and make it the wrong colors. in this case – the opposite colors…

26gnai - halloween | @bulletnails

i chose the bride of frankenstein. i love her hair! i’ve wanted to be bride of frankenstein for halloween for a white, but i haven’t done it because i want to do it right! and lately i tend to procrastinate around halloween time. maybe next year…

26gnai - halloween | @bulletnails

i did my other hand in the correct colors – so that people at work or whatever might have a chance to actually guess what the design is.

26gnai - blue and silver | @bulletnails
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26gnai – blue and silver

starting a new challenge with crumpet’s nail tarts today. this time it’s way simpler – and only every other week. that’s good and bad. some of the challenges were… well… challenging. but some of them got my brain going and i created some really cool stuff. and being only twice a month gives me a chance to do some other stuff just for fun, but i worry that i’ll get lazy. i guess we’ll see what happens.

the first challenge was simple blue and silver. i have this really nice “satin” textured navy and outlined it with a “liquid chrome” silver color. i have mixed feelings about this outline design. i’ve never really liked it when i’ve done this style before. and i’ve never really liked it when i’ve seen it on other people. yet here i am again. i want to like it. i just don’t know that i do.

26gnai - blue and silver | @bulletnails

well, i don’t hate it. the chrome polish went on really smoothly – i got some nice thin, straight lines because of that. i like the colors. i like the texture. so okay. i think the thing that bothers me about the design is that it makes my (and everyone else’s) fingernails look small. i have trouble growing my nails out very far. no matter what i do they always break and are typically about the same length. it’s like my hair – no matter how long i let it grow it only seems to get to a certain point. so i don’t want to make them look any shorter. also because i have a pretty big curve to my nails the line pretty much disappear on the sides.

colors used: claire’s dime a dozen, sally hansen deluxe.

SIA | @bulletnails
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SIA concert

 

so i missed the last prompt of the year long crumpet’s challenge. i was planning on doing it, even alluded to it in my last post. but something cooler came up and my nails had to honor that instead!

on saturday i got to go to a sia concert (with miguel – swoon!). it was amazing. it was just like you would think it would be – sia standing at the back of the stage, bangs-covered face, belting out all her amazing songs with maddie and a few other dancers dressed in nude leotards jumping around the stage. it was really beautiful actually.

i found out i was going to the concert on tuesday – which is why i didn’t have time for the last crumpet’s prompt (earth tones with fan brush). it was understandably usurped!

SIA | @bulletnails

so i tried two different things with my nails – one hand i did half and half like sia’s current iconic wig and the other i used a nude base to mimic the leotard. then each has a little sia face with big bow accent nail :)

septemburton | @bulletnails
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SeptemBurton

for this mani i was inspired by the alamo drafthouse theater. they’re an amazing theater – showing new releases but also random older movies. this month’s theme was septemburton (combo of september and tim burton!).

tim burton is amazing and half of these movies are my childhood.

septemburton | @bulletnails

there’s beetlejuice (beetlejuice, beetlejuice) (1988), edward scissorhands (1990), peewee’s big adventure (1985), batman (1985) and corpse bride (2005).

it was so great getting to go to these movies in the theater – excluding the most recent movie (corpse bride) the oldest i would have been during their original theater run was 6 years old. so i would have never had the chance to see them like that.

septemburton | @bulletnails

besides having great movies – the drafthouse has great food (like truffle parmesan popcorn) and drinks (including boozy milkshakes!) that you order from your pre-reserved seats (& table). it’s a great experience and if there’s an alamo drafthouse in your city and you haven’t been there – go now!

septemburton | @bulletnails

about the mani – i tried to super-simplify the characters (like i previously did with my super heroine design) to 1. make it easier to paint and 2. give it more of an abstract feel. i think if you know they’re tim burton inspired the first two are super easy. the middle and ring got a few correct guesses (maybe people don’t know that they’re tim burton?) and nobody guessed the last one.

 

40gnai - autumn | @bulletnails
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Great Nail Art Ideas – autumn

so this week and next week (stay tuned!) are very similar prompts. so while thinking about autumn i tried to think what else signified the season besides the beautiful colors of leaves changing. the next thing that popped into my mind was pumpkin spice. i love the flavor, but i have come to loathe it because for some reason EVERY. DAMN. THING. is pumpkin spice flavored right now. literally why?! (fun fact: all but one of those links is a real pumpkin spice product!)

but anyway, that’s what i based this manicure on. who says you have to be inspired by things you like?!

40gnai - autumn | @bulletnails

i tried my hand at watermarbling again (i was going for a latte look). i’ve struggled a bit with it in the past but i also haven’t tried it enough to get very good at it. one thing that bothers me is how much polish i’m wasting so this time around i used a shot glass! that definitely helped, but i was only able to put in a few drops of each color – meaning it wouldn’t work with something very colorful – but for this was great. i also just tried to use a really light touch when drawing through the circles. i noticed the more i just skimmed the surface the better my lines were. so maybe i won’t give up on watermarbling after all…

colors used: sinful colors snow me white, models own copper pot, spoiled orange you glad.

40gnai - autumn | @bulletnails

40gnai - yellow, red & green + fishbraid | @bulletnails
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Great Nail Art Ideas – red, yellow & green + fishbraid

have you ever notice that the pastel of yellow is pastel yellow, the pastel of green is pastel green and the pastel of red is pink? i really wanted to do this mani in pastels but was unsure how to make sure it was read as red and not pink. i used one of my favorite polishes: kind of a neon pink / salmon-y color.

40gnai - yellow, red & green + fishbraid | @bulletnails

i also had an idea for a different style of fishbraid – i wanted all three colors on each stroke. it kinda looks like if you have three brushes stuck together, like in calligraphy, or like i (and maybe you) used to do when i was a little kid with crayons. i don’t mind the blast-from-the-past aspect of that!

40gnai - yellow, red & green + fishbraid | @bulletnails

i like the way it turned out – it’s an interesting combo of colors (one i would not choose on my own) and an interesting take on the fishbraid (which really is one of my favorite techniques because it’s so easy yet looks so complicated). if i were to do this mani over the only thing i would change is to try and get each layer closer together to try and fit in more (so it’s not a giant S). oh and also i might try to remove some of the polish as i go – the tips of my nails got real thick because instead of painting stripes i painted the whole tip of my nail each time (the polishes were too transparent and you could see the overlap).

colors used: sally hansen mellow yellow, sally hansen mint sorbet, wet n wild fergalicious.

40gnai - yellow, red & green | @bulletnails

40gnai - books | @bulletnails
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Great Nail Art Ideas – books

i have been waiting for this one for ages! i’m a big reader – i have a 3-4 hour a day commute and, while not a fast reader, i go through a lot of books. which made this prompt both easy and hard. easy because i have so much inspiration. hard because how do i narrow it down?!

so i went with freshest in my mind. i just finished reading the second book in victoria aveyard’s red queen series glass sword. i have a bad habit of starting a book and then finding out it’s part of a series. that was the case with this series. i flew through the first book – such an interesting yet familiar concept. then found out it was part of a trilogy. a trilogy not yet finished! ugh! those are the worst. all i want to do is finish the story but now i have to wait until february to find out what happens.

here’s a synopsis of the red queen (book one in the series):

This is a world divided by blood – red or silver.

The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.

That is, until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power.

Fearful of Mare’s potential, the Silvers hide her in plain view, declaring her a long-lost Silver princess, now engaged to a Silver prince. Despite knowing that one misstep would mean her death, Mare works silently to help the Red Guard, a militant resistance group, and bring down the Silver regime.

But this is a world of betrayal and lies, and Mare has entered a dangerous dance – Reds against Silvers, prince against prince, and Mare against her own heart.

i think that describes my mani better than i could! the characters are divided by blood – red and silver. so with my design i tried to make it look from one direction like red blood dripping and from the other like silver blood dripping.

40gnai - books | @bulletnails

i think it turned out pretty close to what i was imagining. since there’s no actual thing as silver blood i think it’s hard to think of the silver part as the drippy part – the red bloodiness just stands out so much.

40gnai - books | @bulletnails

i also got to use my new chrome powder on this mani! i have been searching what feels like my whole life for an actual chrome polish. while this isn’t perfect (might be my technique) it’s so much closer than anything i’ve encountered before. i will definitely be trying to work it in to more designs!

40gnai - books | @bulletnails

colors used: wet n wild red a good book, chrome powder.

take a look at the other biblio-cures:

40gnai - books | @bulletnails

40gnai - lemon/peach + fluid lines | @bulletnails
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Great Nail Art Ideas – peach or lemon + fluid lines

i don’t know what “fluid lines” means. i should’ve been paying more attention to the other participants in weeks past to see what they did. but i didn’t. so last night as i was painting my nails i decided that i’m going to put a lot of fluid (aka nail polish) on my nails and draw lines through it!

i know that this is technically a needle drag or dry marble but i think it also works as “fluid lines.” there’s not much to this mani – it’s a pretty simple process (with lot’s of tuts around if you don’t know how).

40gnai - lemon/peach + fluid lines | @bulletnails

here’s one thing i haven’t seen anyone doing that really helped me: TIP: use a small brush and put a little polish on it before you start. that really helped me because by the end of my nail the colors were flowing really well together but at my starting point the brush/needle would pull up the polish as it was pulling it along and i had to go in and fill it later (or redo it on a few).

colors used: sally hansen mellow yellow, wet n wild sunny side up, essie sunday funday.

40gnai - lemon/peach | @bulletnails

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails
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Great Nail Art Ideas – inspiration

can you guess what my inspiration was? if you said stranger things – you’re right!

this show is just amazing. and so perfect for the “inspiration” prompt: the show itself was inspired by all sorts of 80’s movies, the show has inspired so much beautiful fan art and that has inspired me :)

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the above image was my epiphany moment – i was like, yeah i could do that on my nails!!

i started with an off-white base coat (that just so happened to be the exact same color as the pages of my book). next step was to add the liquid latex (because i knew this was gonna be messy!) and start in on the upper trees. i actually really like it at this point – the streaks going down my nails plus the sponged part at the top looks like trees in fog or something. but i wasn’t done! i added the same grey on the bottom so i had a solid base to work on top of.

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails

unfortunately at this point i forgot to take pictures until i was done. but from here it’s simple enough! i re-taped off the top part, then sponged on a gradient of blue and navy over the grey. then following the same lines from the trees above i continued them along the bottom using the navy.

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails

i added some glitter to mimic the particles that float through the air in the upside down. again, i could’ve been done here: representing the world that the show exists in. but that’s no challenge ;)

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails

so i used my printable temporary tattoo paper and printed tiny little versions of mike, eleven, dustin and lucas on their bikes, and will running away from the demigorgon for the upside down (used the silhouettes from Matt Ferguson’s above image). will and the monster are hard to see – unfortunately i went a little too dark with my background colors. maybe i shouldn’t have done the grey before the blue…

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails

i love using the tattoo paper because it allows me to do much more detailed art on my finger canvases than i could otherwise do (i like to think of myself as the type of person who could paint super small details like that – but i seem to have proven otherwise on past endeavors). one problem that i have with the tattoo paper thought is that it is a white piece of paper with sticky on the top. when you’re using it the sticky side goes down, the paper gets wet and eventually comes off to leave the sticky side and image on your nail (or skin if you’re using the paper as intended). well this gets difficult when trying to place really small objects precisely because of the white paper blocking the image. it took me a few tries to get the bikes to look like they’re on the ground and not floating like in E.T. (although that would be fitting, seeing as how it is one of the inspirations for the show).

speaking of the tattoo paper – i originally did a different design for this mani. i really love typography and the intro text is beautiful. once again i struggled trying to paint that onto my nails. i ended up doing the tattoo paper on this one too.

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails

i don’t really like that one. i like the concept – one hand being the normal logo and the other representing the upside down. it just wasn’t super readable when not under pretty bright lights. and the curve of my nails made some of the letters disappear :( also the second downside to tattoo paper is that the sticky side is like a super super thin plastic. if you get it on your skin it sticks to it and is kind of hard to cut through. i struggled with that a lot on this one. on pretty much every nail, it got stuck to the nail and my finger, and i had to take an exacto knife and cut through it, without cutting myself or ripping the design.

anyway here’s one more closeup!

40gnai - inspiration (stranger things) | @bulletnails

colors used: sinful colors bubbly, models own everyday grey, sinful colors love nails, sally hansen  deluxe, wet n wild kaleidoscope, essie matte about you.

40gnai - inspiration | @bulletnails

40gnai - orange + geometric | @bulletnails
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Great Nail Art Ideas – orange + geometric

i wasn’t too excited for this one – but i really like what i ended up with! i think i was intimidated by the “geometric” label – thinking i was going to have to do something super intricate or math…

40gnai - orange + geometric | @bulletnails

luckily neither was necessary :) i did a really simple asymmetrical color block – because squares are part of geometry right?! i love the grey to counteract the orange, the silver to add some sparkle and the matte to make the whole thing more subtle. i sorta lucked into this one!

40gnai - orange + geometric | @bulletnails

in person these contrast a lot more against my skin. i think my lighting setup needs some work – i’m really not that orange skinned!

colors used: pop ablaze, models own everyday grey, kiss spa10 silver glitter.

40gnai - orange + geometric | @bulletnails