We haven’t done a mix & match nail in quite a while so we thought it was time! While we love painting one nail a different color than the rest, but we also love alternating a pattern. This one is quite simple and I was thinking– how cute would this be in pink, red + white or pink, red + gold for Valentines day!? Here we go…
You’ll need a dark polish, a light polish and a bright polish, a top coat and a dotting tool (or mechanical pencil as I taught you here!). Here are the links for the colors I used: GREY // WHITE // TURQUOISE
- Paint your fingers with alternating colors.
- On your darker color, use your dotting tool to make dots all around the edge with your light color.
- Now follow the same pattern and do another round of dots just inside of your last dots using your bright polish (see above). You can keep going with this pattern if you want. I just like it lining the outside but it’s up to you.
- Take your darker color and freehand this step. You basically want to follow the shape of your nail, just slightly smaller to allow the bright color to rim the edges. It can be a little hard to get the hang of but you’ll get it. I like to start with painting from the tip. Notice the angle of the brush in this photo.
- Now switch your brush around as you see in photo 5. You’ll connect the two in the middle. I didn’t use stickers or a guide because I think it’s best to just freehand it. Also, once this dries you can go back in with your bright color and touch up the edges so don’t worry too much anout making it perfect.
- Top coat time. The best thing about a topcoat is it makes everything kind of settle in smoother. The little mess ups I had seemed to disappear once I applied my generous topcoat. (Thank goodness)
PHOTO/POST/GRAPHIC DESIGN: KRISTIN ESS
You can’t plan for everything. A few nights ago I realized a couple of my gel nails were lifting at the tip and one was splitting on the side. They were just about to hit their expiration date. I had 2 parties to stop by that night. Couldn’t get in to see my manicurist because the whole world was getting their nails done last week. I made the decision to take them off at home and wear my natural nails for the next couple days and then go in after the first of the year to have them put back on. I did everything the same way my manicurist does in the nail salon and it turned out pretty well. I wouldn’t recommend doing this unless you’re in a pinch like I was, but the alternative is ripping them off or going to someone else (which I will not). I did one hand at a time and had no problems. Here’s how…
You will need: a piece of paper (I used a paper placemat), pure acetone, 5 cotton balls, 10 pieces of foil (I tore mine into 3″x 3″ squares), a wood or metal orange stick, nail file, nail buffer.
- FILE: Use a coarse nail file to scratch the surface. You have to break through that clear coat they put on top last in order to get to the polish below. You don’t have to go crazy, just enough so that the acetone has a place to seep in.
- SOAK: Tear 5 cotton balls in half so you have 10 pieces total. Soak them in acetone and lay them on the nail. Wrap your foil square around the finger and let it sit. I let mine stay on for about 7 minutes after I finished the last one on my first hand. You can really only do one hand at a time.
- SCRAPE: Start scraping the gel nail off with your orange stick. It should fall right off. If there’s some that seems hard to remove, put it back in to soak longer. NOTE: When you pull the foil off, don’t unwrap it, just pull it straight off the tip of your finger so it stays “cupped”. That way it stays the same shape incase you need to slide your finger back in it for a few more minutes. I had to do this with 2 of mine. You don’t want to file or peel any of the gel off. Better to put it back in and let it sit for another minute or 2.
- FINISH: Once you’ve removed all the gel color, you’ll most likely be left with little bit of a spotty clear layer. That’s where the primer and first clear coat meet and it doesn’t come up with the acetone. I washed my hands thoroughly, then took my 4-sided buffer and smoothed it all out. I actually like it because it kind of serves as a “spackle”– once I buffed my nails they were smooth with no scratches or divits. I then shaped my nails, rinsed the dust off and painted them as usual.
I know that soaking your fingers in acetone is crazy, but we do it until there’s a better alternative with gels. I hope this helps some of you the next time you’re in a bind. And please– DON’T PEEL OR BITE YOUR GELS OFF! xo
Last week I put a picture (above) of my sparkly holiday nails on my instagram page. These nails are SO simple and so much fun. Since New Years Eve is quickly approaching I thought this would be a fun tutorial to do because you can do these nails in any color combo. I’ve tried black + gold, white + silver, turquoise + rose gold. The key is to get a really dense glitter polish. My favorite so far are these because they have great colors and they’re super-packed with glitter. Okay, here goes:
photos/post/graphic design: Kristin Ess
- Start with any polish color you want. We used black so you could really see how it’s done. Let it dry really well. You can even put a thin topcoat over it if you want so it doesn’t smudge when you add the glitter.
- Using your dense glitter polish and a super-thin art brush, lay down a line of glitter polish at the tip of the nail. (Or you can do the moons if you’d rather.)
- Using the thinnest art brush you can find, drag the glitter polish out carefully. You don’t need to drag too much of the glitter because you want it to fade to almost nothing. Only go about half the length of the nail.
- After you’ve dragged it out, go back in and lay down one more line of glitter polish at the tip to make it look more dense.
Add your topcoat right away. It helps the glitter lay flatter and settle better in my opinion. Get creative with color combos. I wonder if this would look good coming out from the sides if you have longer nails…? Don’t forget to tweet (@tbdofficial) or instagram (@thebeautydept) us a photo if you try it out! Good luck and happy holidays, friends! xo