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.

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.

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 - 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 - 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.

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 - 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 - yellow & silver + gradient | @bulletnails
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Great Nail Art Ideas – yellow & silver + gradient

i struggled here! yellow and silver did not mix well for me! i tried doing a sponge gradient that ended up an ugly mess (the mixed part in the middle was a really matte brownish green). i tried painting them yellow and sponging on silver. i tried painting them silver and sponging on yellow. all of it ended up looking poopy (literally).

40gnai - yellow & silver + gradient | @bulletnails

so instead of relying on the normal definition of gradient i was forced to think outside of the box. which is actually really good for me. i love gradients and they’re probably my most used technique but they’re all technically the same.

40gnai - yellow & silver + gradient | @bulletnails

so for my yellow and silver gradient i decided to make a half-tone pattern or bubbles or rain or something. i used a few different sized dotting tools and just went crazy. and i love how it turned out! the yellow is super bright (and makes me look really tan) and really makes the chromey silver really stand out. really simple but took a lot of creative thinking to get here!

colors used: salon perfect yowza yellow, claire’s liquid metal dime a dozen.

40gnai - yellow & silver + gradient | @bulletnails

40gnai - beach | @bulletnails
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Great Nail Art Ideas – holidays / seaside / beach

the first thing i thought of when i heard this prompt was “it was an itsy bitsy teenie weenie yellow polka dot bikini, that she wore for the first time today.” so my accent nail on each had represents the bikini and my other nails are the beach.

40gnai - beach | @bulletnails

for the beach nails i used quite a few blues dabbed on with wax paper to get a water-like texture. i wish i had a sandy textured nude color that i could’ve used for the base, but unfortunately i don’t have many textured polishes in my arsenal. the funny thing about this nude color is that, while it may not look like it in the photos, it is very close to my skin color. so as i was wearing this mani around i kept doing double takes when looking at my fingernails because the nude disappears and it looks like my nails are only the length of the blue portion.

colors used: sally hansen babe blue, sally hansen mellow yellow, mentality gumdrophard candy, sally hansen  deluxe, essie cocktails & coconuts, salon perfect fired up fuchsia, torrid purple irridecent.

40gnai - beach | @bulletnails

rupaul's drag race S08E04 | naysha lopez runway inspired mani
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RuPolished – New Wave Queens

i really enjoyed this episode. the music was fun(ny) and i absolutely loved the runway theme – neon!

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i was floored by most of the runway looks – bob (was that nail polish on her head?), betty (so fishy! & where can i get that wig?!), naysha (one of the top looks, like ever), robbie turner (1800’s realness) & nina (a pointy bra and legs for days) were my favorites!

IMG_9976so much inspiration! but when i saw naysha’s i knew it was all over. the only thing left was to figure out how to do this outfit justice. and there was SO much more i wanted to do. this outfit was crazy – airbrushed to death, spikes, gems, neon, spandex – i wanted to include it all. but as i was working i found out that simpler might be better.

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i did this hand first – i was really wanting to go for it! i got all the colors in there, the vertical gradient, the horizontal stripes (i wish i had an airbrush machine!) and the dots. i don’t have any spikes (neon or otherwise) and all my gems are too big and would have taken over the whole nail. but i got the base of the outfit.

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then it was almost time for bed. what to do. i was just going to leave my other hand as it was – primed with white but unadorned – but decided i had enough time to make it match. as long as it was simple. i did the vertical gradient, then decided i had enough time to do the orange stripes – then time for bed young lady! i actually really like this hand too. it’s much simpler / less busy. i think it works better as a manicure because it’s not overwhelming. but the other bring out more of the outfit.

overall, i’m glad i have both versions!

colors used: sinful colors snow me white, model’s own luis lemon, beach hut, pink punch, toxic apple & pukka purple.

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

this week’s prompt is spring. the first thing that popped into my mind was “fall back, spring forward” but that’s not very inspirational when it comes to having to paint my nails. so i tried thinking about springy things – flowers, easter, the birds and the bees, actual springs (both of the bubbling water and circular metal varieties). after all that brainstorming i remembered the phrase, “april showers bring may flowers.” well it’s almost april and it’s practically been monsoon season here in cali (on a realistic note, while it seems to have been raining a lot lately, it’s only because we’re in the midst of a 5+ year drought. in actuality, we’ve only gotten enough rain this year to account for normal annual downfall. someone told me (so take this with a grain of salt) that we would need at least a year of daily rain to make up for how much we’ve lost!).

40gnai - spring | @bulletnails

so i chose to make a rainy day design. i was inspired by lacquer or leave her’s ocean rainstorm mani. super cute combination of waterfall technique and glitter :)

i didn’t have quite as many blue polishes as i would have liked, but after overlapping them and mixing some i ended up with a good range of colors. i also added a cute little yellow umbrella! it reminds me a bit of how i met your mother – maybe subconsciously i chose that color because of that show. i mean, that yellow umbrella was practically a character towards the end!

40gnai - spring | @bulletnails

colors used: models own  chrome blue, sally hansen velvet deluxe, covergirl deep blue sea, mentality gumdrop, sally hansen babe blue, spoiled  plenty of fish in the sea, essie no more film, sally hansen glare essentials, spoiled visually slimming, top speed snow bunny, models own luis lemon.

40gnai - spring | @bulletnails

40gnai - spring | @bulletnails

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

i’ve done a few food related manicures before (popcorn, eggs & oranges). but this time i thought i’d be funny. whenever someone does all their fingernails a different color or pattern or whatever it’s called skittles. which is also a type of food!

40gnai - food | @bulletnails

i know it’s corny (aha! another food theme idea!!) but i thought it was funny. this was also a good manicure for me because my little sister and her husband were in town over the last week and i just didn’t have much time to paint my nails. so i was able to do something pretty quick and it still looks like what i wanted it to look like!

40gnai - food | @bulletnailscolors used: wet n wild red a good book, nyx girls forever 1989, models own luis lemon, spoiled i’m so jaded, and sally hansen pronto purple.40gnai - food | @bulletnails

check out the other tasty manicures:

40gnai - food | @bulletnails

neon gradient | @bulletnails
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neon gradient

it’s been really foggy and cold lately. since i can’t do anything about that, i decided to make some sunshine on my nails. i got a whole rainbow of new polishes when i was home for christmas and wanted to do some more with those. i wanted to use all the colors but my nails would need to have been twice as long and that’s never gonna happen.

neon gradient

these turned out really nice. i was going to use loose glitter flakies for the whole thing but after struggling with my accent nail i decided i didn’t have an entire day to do the others.

neon gradient

40gnai - things that fly - hot air balloons | @bulletnails
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40 Great Nail Art Ideas – things that fly

i’m gonna keep this one pretty brief. once again the idea in my head and the design on my fingers are two drastically different things. i do like how these turned out but the theme isn’t obvious (like I think it always should be).

40gnai - things that fly - hot air balloons | @bulletnails
the theme was “things that fly” and my design is hot air balloons. in my mind i was seeing all these fantastical, colorful designs but when I googled it a lot of the designs are very simple – likes stripes, maybe a chevron or two. so i did what i could with what i had.

colors used: sally hansen babe blue, sinful colors snow me white, kbshimmer pt. young thing, salon perfect fired up fuschia, haute pink, yowza yellow, loopy lime and bermuda baby.

40gnai - things that fly - hot air balloons | @bulletnails

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40 Great Nail Art Ideas – Geeks

sheldonweek three of the crumpets 40 is geeks. there was a lot i could do for this one. but my favorite geek is sheldon cooper. he’s so weird and annoying but lovable and fun.

so my geek nails are dedicated to sheldon. bazinga! colors used: opi opi red and sally hansen mellow yellow.

40gnai - geeks

i think it turned out really cute – i’ve had it on for a few days and have gotten some really nice feedback. i like that the ‘bazinga’ nail is natural because i think it makes the graphic stand out – i just don’t like how stained my ring finger is on my right hand. luckily it’s just at the tip – almost all grown out!

i also really love this red – i’ve worn it before (the bottles almost gone) but it just looks really nice in this manicure. it may have to do with the fact that i’m tan right now – so the color goes with my skin tone better. but it just looks so glossy and sexy! i guess geeks and sexy aren’t mutually exclusive right?!

40gnai - geeks

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fall leaves

i live in california. there are no seasons here. trees, flowers, grass, all grow all year long. so i decided the only way i was going to see the changing leaves was to put them on my fingers!

falli was originally going to paint on the veins of the leaves but i decided to try imprinting them instead. i’m sure there’s some technical term for it but i don’t know what it is…

fallanyway i started out with a makeup sponge and put dabs of autumnal colors on it, then transferred to my nails. i tried to mix it up as i was applying to my nails so that the pattern on each would be slightly different and you’d see more of some colors pop out.

fallas you can see in the pic on the left, when i put on the top coat it really filled in the grooves that i had dug into the polish and makes the leaves a lot more subtle. i think in most of these pictures i like the before top coat versions better because it’s more dramatic. but in real life i like that my nails are a little smoother.

fall

colors used: opi bogotá blackberry, homemade brown, mentality taffy, heaven power up green, and wet n wild sunny side up.

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yellow glitter chevrons

no challenge prompt today. i decided the other day that i really wanted to paint my nails yellow and grey. it’s just such a good color combination! one is so neutral while the other is so bright and vibrant.

yellow chevrons

i also knew i didn’t just want plain colors. my original thought was to do chevrons in matte and gloss so it would be really subtle. i love that look but as i started cutting the chevrons out of painters tape (with pinking shears) i realized that i didn’t want to cut out enough for all my nails!

yellow chevronsit’s amazing how a little laziness can dictate the entirety of something! so instead i did pretty glitter chevrons on my accent nail and left the rest matte grey. i really like matte nails – i think i need to get a better matte topcoat though. these are pretty but i would call them satin. for the glitter i used a sponge to apply so i would get better coverage. and boy did i! i love the macro shot of these. the glitter is so dense. yaaasss!

colors used: sally hansen gunmetal, sally hansen mellow yellow, pop gold glitz, and revlon matte top coat.

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31dc: day sixteen: geometric

on a lot of these 31 day challenges today’s prompt was listed as tribal. i saw someone had changed it on theirs to geometric and i liked that way better. so i followed suit ;)

31dc geometric

31dc geometricmy mani is inspired by piet mondrian – his paintings are so iconic (and geometric!). i love the way his work looks like stained glass.

i started out this mani taping my nails and painting within the lines, then going over it with the black. but i soon realized that that was a lot of unnecessary work. so i just did the black stripes and painted it in. the colors weren’t too opaque that anyone will notice the overlap (except in this macro!)

colors used: wet n wild french white creme, sinful colors yellow (no name on bottle), opi opi red and kiss black striping polish.

31dc

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31dc: day fourteen: flowers

i went very straightforward on this design. i wanted to make something with flour instead of flower (one of my favorite movies is stranger than fiction – and if you don’t know what i’m talking about go watch it!) but i couldn’t think of something that would translate well. i thought of things made with flour – like cookies or toast (which would fit my earlier breakfast theme). but i have neither the colors nor the skill to figure out how to paint my nails to look like toast. and i don’t want to resort to my nail tattoos for everything. so i went super simple with sunflowers.

31dc flower

i like my thumb the best. it looks cute off to the corner. i used a dotting tool for the brown/seeds (essie partners in crime) and i also like how some of the yellow (sally hansen mellow yellow) shines through there.

31dc

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31dc: day three: yellow

today’s challenge was yellow. ugh. i don’t usually do yellow. so i wanted to something unusual, for this unusual (to me) color. at first i thought about painting my nails like twinkies. (if anyone has tried this please let me know – i would love to know how it turned out!) but that seemed hard. i mean, how do you replicate a yellow sponge cake tube with white creme inside. it’s essentially one blob inside another. well, technically so is the design i ended up with. but i think it’s a little more recognizable. and hey, with yesterdays’ design and this one you have a pretty good start to breakfast! maybe for red i should’ve done bacon!!

colors used: sinful colors snow me white and sally hansen mellow yellow.

31dc

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31DC: day two: orange

i couldn’t think of anything but oranges for the orange day two challenge. i’m sure there are many things that are orange and many patterns i could’ve done, but i couldn’t get the literal oranges out of my head.

31dc orange

i started with a base coat of sally hansen mellow yellow. using striping tape i blocked out the orange slices. the ring and thumb were mean to be the whole orange and the others are wedges. i really like this yellow and green combo though! next i applied a coat of spoiled don’t be cheesy and removed the striping tape.

31dc orange

what’s funny is that i accidentally touched one of my fingers before it dried and left a fingerprint. i was really upset thinking i would have to do that finger over. but – lo and behold – the fingerprint made it look textured like a pulpy orange! perfecto. so i went around to all my other fingers and smushed my fingerprints into each. when they were pretty wet they took the texture really well but as they dried it naturally flattened itself out. so i had to keep smushing until they dried. pretty cool!

31dc

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hawaii, here i come!

i’m soooooooo excited! me and a friend just purchased tickets to hawaii for august. when i’m excited about something i need to do something creative to get these emotions out in the open. lucky for me it turned into a cute beachy sunset. man, i just wanna lay in that hammock all day!

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here’s how this started out. messy! typically i use elmer’s glue around my nail which just peels off with the excess polish. well i got a little ahead of myself and just went straight for it this time. cleanup took a long time…

nail polishes used for sunset gradient

these are the colors i used for the gradient (spoiled did i dye it too blonde, nyc 237 (is that the name? i couldn’t find any other for it), spoiled: plenty of fish in the sea, kbshimmer shade shifter and spoiled visually slimming). the black really only showed up on the thumb. i was trying to make it look like the sun was in the middle of the manicure and was getting darker off to the sides. i think it worked out alright :)

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neon marble

more watermarbling. this is one of my favorite looks but one that i’ve had the hardest time nailing down (haha puns!). i can’t decide if it’s the polishes that i use or if it’s user error or what.neon marblei did really like my thumb nail. but that was about it. i can’t seem to get the patterns that everyone else does. it might also be because i usually try to dip at least two fingers at a time – i hate wasting polish!

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butterfly

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this was a fun experiment. in the stamping kit that i got a while ago there was a great print that looks like butterfly wings. my original thought was to go for the obvious and do a yellow and orange monarch look but i just got this great silver holographic polish in the mail and really wanted to use it. overall i think the colors are great but i am still struggling with stamping! all these tutorials i watch everyone seems so proficient. maybe i’m trying to hard, or using the wrong polish or expecting too much. butterfly2

the stamp on these nails looks clean and a rich dark black but don’t be fooled – it’s sharpied! the stamp was originally so translucent and in some places almost non-existent that i would have either had to take all the polish off and do it again, or (as i decided to do) just trace over all the stamp with a fine tip sharpie. it was a lot more work than i planned on for this manicure but the result is good and i guess any practice with stamping can only make me better. butterfly3

the process for this manicure started out with a really unique polish that i got from claire’s/the icing. its called liquid metal and it’s very solid and shiny – i thought it would make a good base coat. the thing that’s unusual with this polish is that it dries almost immediately and is more like a paint pen than nail polish. i still haven’t decided if i like it or not, but a good buy nonetheless. next was my pretty new “pt young thing” holographic polish from kbshimmer on etsy. so pretty! lastly came the stamp in black with a whole bunch of colors sponged on top.

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halloween

it may be a little early (or maybe not), but halloween is one of my favorite holidays. to get a jump start on the halloween season, and hopefully get inspired for a costume and decorations, i did my nails in a halloween theme tonight. there were a few different designs i wanted to try out so i just decided to do all of them!

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this is the base coat for each nail. you’ll notice the index finger changed for the final pic – i had originally painted this with glow in the dark cat eyes on top. i had to do too many layers for the orange/yellow to show up and it just smeared all over the place. so i redid those two.

halloween_3speaking of smearing: this pic is what happens when you don’t use the bathroom before you start a nail project. manicures are like long road trips with little kids: you need to make sure everyone has used the potty before starting that journey!

halloween_4this one is probably my favorite. i was hesitant about how it was going to work out (or if it will stay for very long) but i like the end result. frankenstein’s monster is so iconic i knew i could get away with just the color, hair and bolts. the boltsare what caught me though. i started out just painting them on, but they didn’t stand out (literally!). so i went into my crafty supplies and found some clear/silver seed beads. i broke them in half with wire cutters (some just shattered into dust) and stuck it into the uncured gel polish. i set that, then painted over with the silver to make it really stand out and did one more gel coat – hopefully locking the beads in for at least a few days.

halloween_5lastly here’s another look at the results. i painted the pumpkin face onto one of my nail stamps so i could have a bit more control, especially with my left hand. and that made it a lot easier. if i messed up i could just scrape it off and not worry too much. yay.

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(guardians of the) galaxy nails

i’m so excited for the guardians of the galaxy movie. i still haven’t seen it and i’m practically bursting at the seams! in honor of that movie i decided to try my hand at galaxy nails. i’ll admit – this one looks complicated and i’ve been avoiding it. once i actually got down to it, it was one of the easier ones i’ve done. you can be messy and it won’t matter. brilliant.

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pink + yellow

so, apparently i’ve been doing gradients wrong. well, maybe not wrong but the hard way. up until this point, i’ve been taking a makeup sponge and dipping it in a single color and blotting it from the edge of my fingernail down. as i go in, sunset1the sponge loses most of the paint and that’s how it fades. it’s worked out well for me – i’ve had some nice gradients. but every time i want to do more than one color it turns into a bit of a production. so, i’ve been watching a lot of videos and looking at a bunch of blogs and stuff and it seems that everyone and their dog do gradients with all their colors on a single sponge (see pic). huh. i tried it out and it IS easier. i was worried about how much polish was going to be wasted this way but i was able to do one strip of each color on the sponge and do an entire hand. i had to do this three times to get the colors vibrant, but that’s one less swipe of color per hand than if i had painted them each a single color (with two coats). so that definitely made me feel better about it – i hate wasting polish! the cool thing about this gradient too is that, as you can see in the photo above, i only used three colors but with the overlaps it looks like at least 4 (thats a really pretty orange!).

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watermarbling again

okay – i’m trying water marbling again. this time i did the tape trick on my fingers – last time was a SUPER mess because i didn’t have any protection on my fingers and ended up spending a long long time trying to get the polish off :( again i like these colors – they’re almost fluorescent. also i’m tanning right now (bad i know) so i don’t turn into a lobster on my upcoming vacation and they practically glow under the uv light!watermarble2

nobody should ever see their fingers this close up! i really like the macro shot of this nail though because it shows the patten and the super cute flake glitter that i put on top.

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rainbow

apple2i work at apple. it’s a really interesting place to work. for many reasons. right now is their 30th anniversary / birthday of the mac. every employee is wearing these special 30 shirts to commemorate. i love the rainbow (and miss the old rainbow logo). so i thought i’d get in on the rainbow train and paint my nails to match. i wanted lots of colors on my nails. i picked 5 different polishes and ended up with about 15 different colors. what i did was start with a base coat of each color per nail. once those were dry i took the base from each finger and appleadded to the top of the one next to it. and i did the opposite to the other hand. so in the pic on the right my index got a yellow base and the the middle got the yellow as the accent. the pic on the left my middle got yellow base with the index getting the yellow accent. it seems a little complicated but it was pretty quick and easy. and i love how the different layerings came out with such different colors. i like the left picture the best (except for the index). the color layers on the right are too subtle.