Koi Manicure

Feeling a little fishy? Here’s a manicure featuring koi. Did you know they are a symbol of love and friendship in Japan?

To give my fish somewhere to live, I first painted my nails a turquoise blue shade from Sephora by OPI called Bright as a Feather. This polish has shimmery silver particles in it that give the color more dimension. I applied 2 coats for the swatch below.

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Faces of a Relationship Manicure

Not every relationship is a good one, and there are two sides and more than meets the eye when it comes to each one. This manicure isn’t specifically based on anyone I know, but it’s just me expressing more of an artistic side.

I started by painting my nails a creamy off white color. This shade is B268 Coconut from the March Mani X Me Box from Maniology, and it’s opaque in 2 coats. Use code FINEPOLISH10 to save 10% off your order or $5 off a Mani X Me subscription!

This shade is B268 Coconut from the March Mani X Me Box from Maniology, and it's opaque in 2 coats. Use code FINEPOLISH10 to save 10% off your order or $5 off a Mani X Me subscription!

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Neon Rainbow Pride Nails

It’s June, and pretty much the entire month is associated with Pride celebrations. I was playing with drag diva pianist Jacqueline Jonée for her shows, so I wanted to do a set of rainbow nails to complement her “50 Shades of Jonée” theme. I’ve been itching to try out my neon powders with stamping, so keep reading to see how this was achieved!

I started by painting all my nails black with Black Lace, a color from Sephora’s ancient “5 day shine” series of nail lacquers. This polish was part of a set that was gifted to me for my birthday 9 years ago, and it still works great!

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2 coat swatch of Black Lace from the Sephora 5 day shine collection.

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Thermal Forest Landscape Nail Art

Awhile back, I tried out a holographic thermal top coat on my tax day nails and wasn’t so satisfied with the results. I vowed to try the top coat out with a different design that would really showcase its gorgeousness, so here I am presenting some thermal top coat nails, take two!

Because I knew that the thermal top coat had a slightly grayish undertone to it even when warm, I decided to pick a polish color that belonged to the same spectrum. Pictured here is 3 coats of The Color to Watch from OPI. It’s beautifully shimmery and has a slight pink-lavender shift.

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Fun fact: this was one of the first bottles of OPI polish that I ever bought!

Knowing that my thermal top coat would make this color darker, I decided to make a forest landscape scene across my nails to mimic the look of dusk turning into evening. To accomplish this, I used the Harunouta-L072 plate.

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Mermaid Nails

Summer is pretty much right around the corner at this point, and the temperatures have definitely been rising in the city! It’s been making me crave a beach day, or at least some mermaid nails!

I started by painting my nails with a black soak off gel polish from Born Pretty. I applied and cured 2 coats of color and followed it up with a layer of Clavuz no wipe gel top coat. Each layer was cured for 60 seconds in a 48W UV/LED lamp, and then a blend of teal and green chrome powders from iMethod Beauty was applied with a sponge applicator and sealed in with another layer of gel top coat.

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I applied teal chrome powder to the tips of my nails and green chrome powder to the rest of the area in order to create this gradient effect.

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Shattered Mirror Nails

Not too long ago, I dropped my phone and cracked the screen for the first time ever! It’s limited to only 2 corners, so it doesn’t really get in the way, but for a perfectionist like me, it’s annoying! I’m due for a new phone upgrade anyway, so maybe it’s a sign… In any case, it inspired the creation of this shattered mirror nail art.

I began by painting all my nails with black gel polish. Because I knew I was going to apply chrome powder over my base, I didn’t mind using one of my lower quality gel polishes to do the job. This black gel polish in color 01 from Born Pretty’s Solid Color Series was the very first gel polish I owned and was part of their silver chrome starter kit. My, how far we’ve come since then! Now I know not to wipe off the tacky layer between coats of color and to use a good gel base coat with it! This shade still left much to be desired in terms of coverage as 2 thin coats still wasn’t very opaque, but like I said, I wasn’t picky about it because I knew I was topping it with a chrome powder.

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Each coat cured for 60 seconds in a 48W UV/LED lamp.

I then applied and cured a coat of Clavuz No Wipe Top Coat prior to applying a silver chrome powder from IMethod Beauty over it with a sponge applicator. The results are super shiny and reflective, and you can’t tell that the black polish underneath it had uneven coverage.

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Another layer of Clavuz No Wipe Top Coat was applied over the powder to seal it into place.

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Tropical Spring Break Nails

Everyone was going away for spring break recently, which was the inspiration for this manicure. I have one student who adores flamingos and had a “flamingo experience” where she got to interact with them in person while she was in Florida, which sounded amazing! These nails are dedicated to her.

I chose a rosy salmon pink as the base color for this design. This was achieved with 3 thin layers of Belen gel polish in color NU016. Each coat was cured for 60 seconds in a 36W UV/LED lamp.

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