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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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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My First Time Doing Drag Marble Nails

Having been doing nail art for a number of years now, you would think that I’ve tried pretty much everything nail related by now, but surprisingly I’ve never done a drag marble manicure! People like Sveta Sanders caused quite a stir when her short video tutorials using this technique went viral on social media, but I was too obsessed with stamping and freehand designs at the time to ever want to try it out. However, the acquisition of a 12 color gel polish set from Mefa (look for a review on my blog coming soon) made me want to use all the colors! Gel polish is perfect for doing drag marbles because it doesn’t set until you cure it under a lamp, and so this design was created. Forgive me if it looks underwhelming because this was my first time doing a drag marble manicure!

I began by painting my nails with Mefa 047, a light gray color. I applied and cured 2 coats of polish, each one setting in 60 seconds in a 36W UV/LED lamp. The coverage on my nails wasn’t the greatest, but I didn’t mind because I knew I was going to apply more polish on top of this for the drag marble.

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2 coat swatch of Mefa 047 gel polish.

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Review of Clavuz Neon Bling 12 Color Gel Polish Set

Shopping for gel polish online can be scary business. Not every brand is trustworthy, and things get especially questionable when the price seems too good to be true. However, I had such good results with a gel base and top coat set from Clavuz that I didn’t hesitate to try out this 12 color gel polish box set from the same company.

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The “neon bling” 12 color gel polish set from Clavuz comes packaged in a box ready to be wrapped for gift giving.

The outside packaging really doesn’t entice the buyer into purchasing the set. They don’t specify which colors are included, nor do they have pictures of the polishes included, but they do list all the boring stuff.

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The instructions are printed on the back of the box along with low resolution images of random fingers painted with colors that you don’t get in this set.

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One side lists the ingredients and warnings while the other side displays generic graphic outlines of 12 bottles of polish, not scaled to size.

The contents of the box are more exciting. The bottles, which are an 8 mL size and therefore a little small, are held in place in a plastic tray, and more detailed instructions along with a swatching wheel are included.

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Love Script Manicure

As I mentioned before, I recently traveled to attend my grandmother’s funeral. For days, I struggled to think of how to paint my nails. It wasn’t so much about coming up with something funeral appropriate as it was about creating something that might honor her. As she loved beautiful things and being flashy, I came up with this holographic love manicure to wear to pay my last respects.

I started by painting my nails with color 3709 from an amazing gel polish set from Clavuz. This shade is stunning in so many ways, but it is basically a mauve rose toned jelly polish with dazzling holographic glitter. As with any holo, pictures rarely do it justice.

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2 coats of 3709 from Clavuz were applied for this swatch.

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Glam Punk Sheep Nails

I had the wonderful opportunity to play with New Camerata Opera last week for their double bill of John Blow’s Venus and Adonis and Savitri by Gustav Holst. Everyone sounded amazing, but I was especially inspired by the costuming for the production of Venus and Adonis. They went for an MTV 80’s glam rock/punk interpretation of this 17th century opera with vibrant neon pinks and black mesh, leather, and lace.

After our first dress rehearsal, I promptly went home and created these nails.

I started by painting my nails white with Laguna Moon Classic Soak-Off UV-LED Gel Polish in color CL361.

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2 coats of gel polish were applied with each coat cured at 30 seconds with a UV/LED lamp.

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