Little Red Riding Hood Nails

If you’re a fan of the musical Into the Woods, you’ll recognize the scene on my nails from the Little Red Riding Hood feature where the wolf and Red sing “Hello Little Girl.” Even though this manicure is stamped, it was probably one of the most labor intensive stamping designs that I’ve ever done and uses several different techniques to bring the images to life.

I started with a rich shimmery forest green polish from Julep called Giselle. You only need to apply 2 coats of polish to achieve the same color that you see in the bottle, and it’s beautiful all on its own.

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Irish Unicorn Nails

If you blog, you’re almost always expected to come up with nails for every holiday. While I never used to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day all that much, my nails certainly have been on board for the past few years! This year’s inspiration came from a student of mine who dressed up as an Irish unicorn for her lesson. I became obsessed with her headband, so she gave me a homework assignment to create some nail art based on it.

My first step was to paint all my nails green. I used Paper Chasing from China Glaze.

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The perfect kelly green- Paper Chasing from China Glaze. Be warned, though- this stuff will stain your nails a shade that Elphaba would find normal!

For more impact and sparkle, I used Emerald City holographic glitter from Dimension Nails over the polish. To apply it, I painted a coat of Paper Chasing over a nail, dipped it into the pot of glitter while the polish was still wet, then used a fan brush to sweep away the excess. This process was repeated for each nail.

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Welcome to the Emerald Isle!

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Frozen Olaf Nails

With the recent deep freeze across the US, I decided to paint Olaf from the movie Frozen. What better way to stay happy in the cold?

To start, I applied and cured 2 coats of color TC06 from Aimeili (literally called Glitter Purple to Glitter Blue) along with their gel base and top coat. This gel polish is from their thermal collection, so the color is dark purple in the cold and turns into a medium light blue when it’s warm. The jelly formula also has different sized pieces of silver glitter in it, which remind me of snow.

Here’s a shot of it mid-transition!

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Outer Space Starry Nails

NYC experienced a very strange phenomenon last Thursday. It’s being dubbed the Astoria Borealis, and it was the result of an “arc flash,” so says Con Edison, although initial reports said that it was because a transformer exploded at the power plant, which is located in Astoria, Queens. What resulted was that the sky lit up bright as daylight with blue and orange lights that flickered much like they do when a fluorescent bulb starts to go bad. It was very alarming to see as it was after 9 pm when the sky is normally very dark, and the flashes continued for about 2-3 minutes. This light could be seen from miles away, and social media lit up with all sorts of images and videos from all over the area after it happened.

My initial thoughts were that either aliens had landed or that a bomb had gone off. So naturally that inspired some outer space nail art.

I chose a pretty jelly polish from Pretty & Polished called Don’t Be A Drag for my base color. It kind of looks like a galaxy with all the different kinds of glitter in the polish. You need to apply 3 coats to get good glitter coverage, otherwise the color is very sheer.

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Cute Holiday Penguin Manicure

I was inspired by the cute images on the Beauty Big Bang XL-033 stamping plate to create this fun holiday penguin manicure. It combines a wrapping paper print with candy cane stripes along with it just for fun!

I started with an almost white base. This color is called Steph from Julep, and it has the slightest hint of pink along with a gorgeous shimmery finish. I didn’t pick a pure white because I knew I was putting the penguin on one of my nails, and I wanted his belly to be a pure white that would stand out compared to the base color.

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2 coats of Steph by Julep were applied for this swatch.

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Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer Manicure

We recently had our first snowfall storm in NYC, and wow, did it make a mess out of the city! Nothing takes the magic out of snow away like sitting in traffic on unplowed streets for hours and hours! The weather inspired me to create a gray skied manicure with a lovable icon of Christmas to try to bring the wonder back.

I started by painting my nails gray with Laguna Moon Classic Soak Off Gel Polish in color CL064. Because I was using gel polish, I applied 3 very thin coats cured at one minute each in a UV/LED lamp.

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3 coats of Laguna Moon’s CL064 shade turns your nails into a chic gray with the added reinforcement of a gel polish.

My initial plan was to mostly use stamping techniques for this manicure, although things did not go exactly according to plan for me as you will soon see!

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Radioactive Frankenstein Manicure

It’s less than a week away from Halloween! Do you know what you’re putting on your nails yet?

I’m probably going to end up changing my manicure again before the big day, but I wanted to do a cute take on Frankenstein first! It’s been awhile since I’ve done some freehand nail art, so it was nice to pull out the brushes for this one.

I started by painting my nails black except for my ring finger, which I painted green. I used What’s A Tire Jack? from Sephora by OPI for the black color and Radioactive from Formula X for Sephora for the green shade.

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This color combo looks very Wicked!

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Unicorn Nail Art

Happy March, everyone! I’ve been meaning to do some unicorn nail art for awhile just for fun, so let’s get on with this magical manicure!

My base color was an indigo wonder from Beauty Bigbang, 009 in their Holo Polish series.

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Beauty Bigbang Holo Polish 009 is full of magical rainbows that are perfect for a unicorn theme!

I’ve been feeling lazy about doing freehand stuff lately, so I opted to use plate L045 from Harunouta to assist me with this manicure.

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I chose to use the unicorn from the top row, 2nd image from the left, and the shooting star 2 images to the right of that for this manicure.

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Fun Halloween Themed Nails

Happy November! This post is coming a little late because I’ve been swamped with trying to get a lot of pictures edited and ready for the blog (not to mention work!), but I think you guys will still enjoy seeing my journey for this manicure!

I did my nails the night before Halloween, and while I didn’t have any spectacular plans to go out, I did want to be festive. I went with a various selection of stamped images on top of a dark background.

To start, I prepared my nails with Born Pretty Liquid Peel Off Tape and then painted my nails with Legend from Formula X for Sephora.

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I kind of wish I hadn’t painted the peel off tape first because this shade is gorgeous and deserved its own swatch photo!

Next I took a small piece of a makeup sponge and applied Jetsetter from Formula X and blended it with Legend to create a vampy gradient.

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Because each shade has shimmery particles in it, the textures blend extra well together.

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Minnie Mouse Themed French Manicure

Hello, lovelies! I’ve got a Disney themed manicure for you today inspired by Minnie Mouse. This is dedicated to my toddler niece Sarah, who isn’t even old enough to appreciate nail art yet, but she loves Minnie!

This design was also done in part to fulfill the French manicure requirement of a nail collaboration I participated in on Instagram, which required that the design be done freehand. Done and done!

My nails have been slightly discolored from different past manicures, so I first applied a sheer pink polish to my nails to make my nail beds look like they’re naturally healthy.

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This is one coat of Sally Hansen Advanced Hard as Nails in Pink Whisper Creme.

Next, I took a bright red color and painted the tips of my nails for a simple French manicure. Those with unsteady hands can use vinyl guides to keep the lines crisp. After allowing the polish to set a little, I dipped a striping brush into craft smart acrylic paint in black and drew a fine line between the tip with the nail bed. I planned to paint Minnie’s ears with her signature bow on my ring finger, so I outlined the top of her head and added more red polish in a bow tie shape for that nail.

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That gorgeous red is NY139 from Nicka K.

To finish up, I placed white polka dots on the red tips and the bow with b.m.c. nail lacquer in Angelic White and a dotting tool and outlined the bow and added the knot details with more black acrylic paint.

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A very French Minnie Mouse!

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Macro shot of the bow design for the collaboration.

My only grievance with this design is that my nails aren’t wide enough to really show Minnie’s ears. You can only see a hint of them along the sides of my nails, but it’s not very obvious because my nails also have a defined C curve. That’s why I can only call this inspired by Minnie Mouse.

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A look that Minnie would love to rock as well.

On a side note, this is probably the longest length that I have grown my nails, and I know they’re not even that long! I love the way they look, but it’s so uncomfortable for me to do normal activities like write and put in my contact lenses! Does anyone else feel this pain?

I’ll catch you guys again once I trim and file my nails. Happy polishing!