National Doughnut Day Nails

National Doughnut Day was on June 2 this year, and I totally missed it! I love a good doughnut and wanted to show my appreciation, so I came up with these delectable nails to celebrate in my own way.

I cheated by using a stamping plate to make the doughnuts, although in retrospect this would have been a lot faster doing the design by hand! So do be warned, if you try this at home, it will take a few hours to complete all the steps for all 10 nails.

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The Cake BPX-23 from Born Pretty Store has lots of yummy looking images on it.

Because the plate did not have a full size doughnut image, I decided to make my own out of the image in the 3rd row, 2nd from the right. I used the Lotus Mat from Bundle Monster to make the decals, but you can use a plastic sandwich bag or something similar in lieu of a silicone mat instead.

Start by applying thick swatches of top coat to your mat that are big enough to cover each of your nails and allow them to dry completely. I used HK Girl top coat from Glisten & Glow for this step.

Next, take a dark brown polish (Olivia from Julep) and stamp the doughnut image multiple times onto each dried swatch of top coat. Stamp as many or as little times as you like, but try to think of how you want the placement of the design to look on your nail.

Now the fun part: adult coloring time! Pick a color you would like your doughnut base to be (a light brown like Vera from Julep works well) and a color for your frosting on top. Because it was taking forever to make these decals, I stuck with a strawberry pink for all my donuts (Carnival Cotton Candy from Nicole by OPI), but you can come up with whatever flavors you like- vanilla, chocolate, blueberry, grape… you get the picture. Try to stay within the lines, although your patience might get the better of you. Using a dotting tool or a small brush can help fill in all the details.

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Time to make the doughnuts! Decals are just as time consuming to make.

Allow the decals to dry completely, but in the meantime you can apply a base color to your nails. I chose a nice blue for my background that contrasted nicely with the pink frosting on the doughnuts.

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For Audrey from China Glaze channels the iconic blue Tiffany’s box.

Allow your base color to dry before you attempt to apply your decals. Gently peel a decal from the mat, trim it to the approximate size of your nail, apply top coat to the back of the decal to allow it to become pliable again, then place it onto your nail in the position that you would like it to go. Do this to all your nails, trimming away any excess, and finish by cleaning up around your nails with a brush or cotton swab dipped into acetone. Apply an additional layer of top coat to bring back the shine and further seal the decal into place.

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The finished doughnut nails!

These nails channel one of my favorite moments from The Simpsons during a Treehouse of Horror episode where Homer finds himself in an alternate reality. D’oh!

Hope you had the chance to enjoy a nice doughnut to celebrate the holiday! Happy polishing!

 

Chocolate Water Marble Manicure

Ready for another @glamnailschallenge prompt?  The theme for Feb. 19 was Chocolate, so I figured a nice marbled design would fit the bill perfectly.  You see fancy chocolatiers  put these designs on top of pieces all the time, so why not on my nails?

I started by picking out three shades of brown for the water marble.  They all happened to be colors from Julep: Vera, Olivia, and Skylla in order from lightest to darkest shade.  I painted all my nails with the lightest color to help with the opacity.

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Vera by Julep makes me want to have a nice cup of coffee with milk.

I usually suck at water marble designs, but I had decent luck with this one!  I used room temperature water in a plastic container, formed a bullseye by dropping each color of nail polish into center multiple times, then used a water marbling pen to draw out the design lengthwise first followed by a zig zag pattern.  I think the pointy tip of the pen really helped to make the marbling process easier.

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I used Scotch tape around my nail beds to make the clean up process easier, and because of the size of my container, I was able to dip two nails into the same pattern without totally ruining the surface.  Score one for saving time!

After some top coat, the look was ready to be served.

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Water marbled nails with a box of truffles from Russell Stover. Yum!

I think this water marble looks like chocolate especially because I chose all creme based shades.  Shimmery chocolate seems like it would be cool, but it’s just not realistic.

Hope you enjoyed this manicure and that it didn’t tempt you with any chocolate cravings too much.  Happy polishing!

Thanksgiving Day Turkey Nail Art

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

I’ve been seeing my friends post pictures of their kids’ (!!!) handprint turkey art online and thought the feathers would make for some nice nail art.  Problem is that I felt too lazy to paint, so guess what shortcut I took?

Stamping to the rescue!

All I needed to do was find a plate that had some kind of long petal design.  After scanning through my inventory, I came up with this:

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Plate BPL-002 from Born Pretty Store.

Looks like there is a whole mish mash of things going on, but what I think was some kind of flower/mushroom design turned into turkey feathers for this manicure!  I used the part of the design at the top of the plate just left of center.

But first, the color palette.

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From left to right: Masked Beauty by Finger Paints, NY139 by Nicka K, Mai Tai by Nailtini, Olivia by Julep, and noir black by b.m.c. nail lacquer.

I started by painting all my nails with Masked Beauty.

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Goldfingers!  A swatch of Masked Beauty by Finger Paints.

I used a marshmallow stamper and noir black to transfer the design from BPL-002 to each of my nails.  The squishiness of the stamper allows you to line up the design on your nail and push down directly onto the nail instead of having to roll the stamper from one side of your nail to the other.

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Gobble gobble!  Time to trim this turkey.

So a few things that maybe I should have done differently about this manicure.  One- I didn’t want the circles in between the feathers, so I should have erased these from the stamper before applying it to my nail.  I ended up removing them by lightly applying a cotton swab dipped in acetone to the parts of the design I wanted to erase.

Two- Coloring in a design always looks better with the reverse stamping method because you get more of a solid black outline around the design.  This particular image wasn’t too hard to color in, so I decided to wing it and see if I could do it directly on the nail after stamping.  It looked a little sloppy for my taste, but I think it saved me time from having to make 10 separate decals for my nails.

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Shake your tailfeather!  Turkey nails served up in time for Thanksgiving.

Just wanted to also note that the coloring in was done with a dotting tool because the sections were large enough to do so.  This made cleaning up between colors a breeze- all I had to do was wipe the metal end on a napkin, and I was ready for the next color.

Hope you all get your fill of turkey today and score some excellent deals for Black Friday!  Happy Thanksgiving, and happy polishing!

Autumn Foliage Nail Art

The crisp autumn air is something else.  It’s the perfect weather in which to take a walk outside and enjoy the wonderful golds, reds, and browns of the season.

For this manicure, I started by painting all my nails with Keep Me On My Mistletoes by Sephora by OPI.

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Beautiful shimmery gold nails courtesy of Keep Me On My Mistletoes by Sephora by OPI.

To make the leaves in the design change colors, I added a gradient to the gold base with a sponge.

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The colors I used for the gradient pictured below are Keep Me On My Mistletoes, S-age Is Just A Number, and I Think I Cayenne, all by Sephora by OPI.

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Gold, green, and orange gradient. I mixed up the direction of the fade to make things more interesting.

The next part of the manicure was stamped with plate BPL-029 from Born Pretty Store.  I used the design in the top row, 2nd from the right.

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Nature lovers will love plate BPL-029 from Born Pretty Store.

The color palette for this next part incorporates red, copper, and brown to complete the quintessentially fall spectrum.

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Pictured from left to right are Olivia by Julep, New Year’s Red-solution by Sephora by OPI, and Don’t Be Egg-nogious by Sephora by OPI.

To color in the flowers, I used the reverse stamping technique.

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The stamping was done with Olivia by Julep.

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I lightly brushed on New Year’s Red-solution by Sephora by OPI to the flower petals in the design using the brush on the bottle.

At this point, I should have taken a photo, but I have to admit that I was half asleep and forgot to do so.  -_-  Needless to say, I stamped the colored in pattern directly onto all of my nails, varying the position of the image for a more random look.

For extra shimmer magic, I swiped Don’t Be Eggnog-ious by Sephora by OPI over only the leaf parts of the design before I applied a topcoat.

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Autumn foliage nails!

Even though there is a lot going on in the design, it was fairly simple to do.  Hope you all get your fill of pumpkin-spice goodies while the season lasts!  Happy polishing!

Ice Cream Nail Art

I can’t believe that I didn’t know that July 19 was National Ice Cream Day!  I definitely would have celebrated were I aware of this beforehand, but I hope you guys enjoyed some ice cream.  🙂

It’s totally coincidental that I decided to do some ice cream inspired nails last night.  I’ve been in a funk because of horrible back pain that I’ve been experiencing the past few days, and I had to force myself to do my nails just to keep some sort of normalcy in my life right now.  I was not in the mood to do any freehand painting, so I decided to look through a set of Bundle Monster plates that I purchased a few months ago and thought that the two plates below would make a great looking ice cream manicure.

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Plates by Bundle Monster- the inspiration for this week’s manicure.

Next step: picking the colors.  I used only three different polishes for the final look.

Sephora by OPI- Neutral Beauty
Julep- Olivia
Konad Special Nail Polish- Pink

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Polishes for a strawberry ice cream mani.

First, I painted 2 coats of Neutral Beauty onto all of my nails to make the general ice cream cone color.  This technically ends up being the highlight color on the cone part of the design after the stamping is done.

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Neutral Beauty by Sephora by OPI

Next, I used Olivia with plate BM-418 to make the waffle cone pattern.  I kept the smaller sized part of the design toward the cuticle knowing that the larger part would be covered by the ice cream drips later on.  They kind of look like giraffe nails at this point, mainly because the brown color that I used is dark.  I don’t own many brown polishes (honestly, how many different brown polishes does anyone own?), so I had to go with Olivia.

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Slightly burnt looking (or maybe chocolate covered) waffle cone pattern done with Olivia by Julep and the BM-418 plate by Bundle Monster.

I used Konad’s pink polish to imitate strawberry ice cream dripping down the sides of the cones.  I knew that there was no way that the polish would be opaque enough to cover the waffle cone pattern, so I considered the stamping as a template for how to paint the drips on afterward.

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What Konad Special Nail Polish in Pink and Bundle Monster BM-405 look like on top of the cone pattern. Unfortunately the polish isn’t opaque enough to cover the existing design.

The last step was to go back and paint over the drip pattern directly with the brush from the bottle.  Thankfully, Konad polishes have a small and somewhat stumpy brush, so it’s easy to paint with with a little precision.  If you want to recreate this look with a different brand of polish, you can also use a dotting tool so that it’s easier to achieve the rounded edges of the drips.

Technically it’s not even necessary to stamp the drip pattern on beforehand, seeing as you have to paint over it again to make it look more opaque.  I just wasn’t feeling up to doing it completely freehand because of the aforementioned back pain, but painting over a stamped pattern definitely makes you feel more secure in the same sense that kids love using tracing paper to draw.

The result is a fun summertime mani that drips with happiness without the mess.  Enjoy!

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Melting strawberry ice cream never looked so good.

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Posing with a Cheesecake Oreo ice cream cone from Max and Mina’s in Queens. Yum.