Animal Print Fourth of July Nails

Happy Independence Day, America!

Everyone is probably putting stars and stripes on their nails today, so I wanted to do a different interpretation of the American flag.  The first thing that occurred to me when I thought of stripes was zebra print.  So why not do an animal print interpretation of the flag?  Put some leopard spots instead of stars.  It’s like a cross between Betsey Johnson and Betsy Ross!

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My polishes from left to right: Curve-aceous by Sephora by OPI, Dandy Lyin’ Around by China Glaze, Splish Splash by China Glaze, Up All Night by China Glaze, and Silver Glitter by Kleancolor. All these polishes have shimmery finishes.

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I painted 2 nails blue and 3 nails red (the third was my thumb).

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Using a dotting tool, I applied Dandy Lyin’ Around to the blue section haphazardly to start the leopard print pattern. I used a striping brush and craft smart acrylic paint in white to paint the zebra stripes.

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I used a smaller dotting tool to apply dark blue polish around the white dots and filled in empty spaces with a few more dots of Up All Night. I used a dotting tool to also go over the solo blue dots with Silver Glitter.

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After applying top coat, the design is finished.

I admit, it’s a bit of a stretch to think that this design is symbolic of the flag, but it’s kind of cool anyway.  Perhaps if I made sure that there were 13 red and white stripes in total, this would have been more convincing, but I took some artistic license.

Now go enjoy your barbecues!  Happy polishing!

Variations on a Color Theme- Easy Nail Art

For the longest time I have wanted to do a mismatched pattern on my nails united by a color theme.  I’ve been wearing a lot of cool tones lately, so I went with a turquoise blue, silver, and white color scheme.  I tried to pick colors that had the same glittery/metallic finish, so after digging through my stash, I came up with these colors:

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Pretty silver, blue, and white polishes all in a row. Left to right: Finger Paints- Silver Bells, Sephora by OPI- Who Let the Dorks Out?, Sephora by OPI- Bright as a Feather, nails inc.- mayfair, Kiss Nail Art Paint- Silver Glitter.

Next, I tried to plan out what the base colors would be.  I definitely wanted Silver Bells to be on my ring finger, so I painted the two different shades of blue on each side of that and switched the shades up so that no two adjoining fingers had the same color on them.

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Truly basic “nail art” for beginners. Still a pretty look.

Next, I tried experimenting with some polka dots.  I used dotting tools to make dots of different sizes (a key point if you don’t want your nails to look like dominoes).  I decided to also color block my pinky and thumb nails to jazz things up a bit.  For the blocking, I used the brush from the bottle of polish to paint on the contrasting stripe, and then I used a striping brush (really, this is the only reason I used the Kiss Nail Art Paint color- so I wouldn’t have to clean a brush) to outline the color blocked sections.  Add some more polka dots, and you’re good to go!

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Variations on a color theme. I’m such a music geek. 😛

Incidentally, I didn’t want to put any nail art on my ring finger because Silver Bells by Finger Paints is one of the sparkliest glitter polishes I’ve ever used.  It really looks best without anything else on it in my opinion.  I definitely recommend it if you want some bling on your fingers!

The look reminds me of Easter eggs and Christmas ornaments, so I might try doing this again around the winter holidays.

Happy polishing!  🙂

Poolside Inspired Nail Art

After such intensive work on the Minions last week, I wanted to keep it simple.  Brainstorming summery things, I decided a pool would be good inspiration, so I dug through my nail foils and found this beauty:

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Nail foil purchased on eBay.  Doesn’t this remind you of how inviting a pool looks on a hot summer day?

I wanted to contrast it with a silvery gray color, but apparently I’m a bit color blind at night, the time when I usually paint my nails.  Using Racy from Formula X for Sephora, I painted all my nails with 1-2 coats and realized that the color was actually a metallic purple-gray color.  And me being too lazy to take it off and start again, I just went with it anyway.  Hey, I said poolside inspired, which is the catch phrase for not having to literally paint what I said I was going to do!  😉

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Racy by Formula X for Sephora.

Using an old nail polish brush and a solution made of 1/2 water and 1/2 ScraPerfect’s Best Glue Ever (highly recommended by Robin Moses on her blog), I painted half my nail on the diagonal with glue and let it dry clear before applying the foil.

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So shiny! Freshly applied foil.

To hide slight imperfections on the diagonal border of the foil, I added a stripe of Silver Glitter by Kiss Nail Art Paint.

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Nail art featuring Kiss Nail Art Paint in Silver Glitter.

For a finishing touch and no good reason other than the fact that I wanted to use them, I added a rhinestone to the center of each silver glitter stripe.  I didn’t use glue to adhere these because they are small (2 mm diameter) and because adding a topcoat over the rhinestones would help seal them in place.

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Pre-topcoat application. So shiny!

The final dilemma was figuring out if my topcoat would disintegrate the foil.  If you’ve used nail art foil before, you’ll know this problem quite well.  Seche Vite, which I swear by as the topcoat for practically all of my manicures, breaks up the foil and dulls its appearance.  This time I tried out Miracle Gel Topcoat by Sally Hansen, and it did a pretty good job of not destroying the foil.  If any of you have recommendations for good topcoats, I’d love to hear them in the comments!

Happy painting!

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With topcoat, the foil doesn’t look as lustrous, but at least I know it won’t rub off by the end of the day!