A shade of the dramatic, where different is all there is.

Posts tagged “Nail Art

Penguin Nail Art

I came across this adorable Penguin Nail Art video tutorial and knew I just had to try it!

Here was my final product:

Penguin Manicure Tutorial

I took some progress pictures so you can see them coming together:

First, I painted all of my nails with a basic black nail polish.  I used Liquid Vinyl by Orly.

Black nail polish by Orly

Then, using my new dotting tools, I did my best to create hearts on top of the black using a white nail polish.  I used Paper Mache nail polish by Fingerpaints.  This was definitely the most difficult part of this manicure, especially when working on my right hand with my left.

How to: Penguin Nails

The little penguins start to take shape once you start the next step and begin adding the orange on.  I didn’t have a nail striper in yellowy-orange like she does in the video, so I decided to use my nail dotters and a basic orange nail polish (I used Hi Def – Sephora by OPI).  I did my best to add little feet and beaks similar to what she did in her tutorial.

penguin manicure tutorial

Next up was the eyes.  I started with black dots, gave them a minute or two to set…

Penguin Mani

…and then added the white dots on top.

Penguin Manicure, nail art

Part of me actually prefers them without the white dot on top.  They are so cute with the big fat black eyes.  Either way though, they are very adorable and I was so happy I found this tutorial on youtube.

Here is the complete video tutorial I followed, I hope you check it out!

This kind of nail art was totally new to me and definitely a challenge.  But I found it very rewarding because of how fun they looked afterwards.  I’m looking forward to trying out something like this again soon.

What are your favourite Winter/Holiday inspired nails this season?

xox,

Shannon


Nail Dotting: my new set of tools and my first mani

Polka Dot Manicure

There are so many bloggers out there that create amazing and beautiful designs with the help of “nail dotters”, or “dotting tools”.  I’d looked around for them at Sally Beauty Supply, Wal-Mart, drugstores, etc and was never able to find any sort of set that offered multiple sizes.

So I turned to my trusted friend Samira who let me in on the secret of where she got her set of nail dotters…Ebay!

I paid only $1 (“Buy it now”) for the below set of nail dotting tools a couple of months ago and received free shipping to boot!  Good luck beating this deal anywhere, I think it’s safe to say that you won’t.

$1 Nail Dotters - Ebay

They shipped this nail dotting set from China and it arrived about a month after placing my order.

I checked out Ebay just now and this set is a common sale item from multiple sellers, with various prices ranging from $1-$2 including shipping.  So if you are looking for a set like this and not in a major hurry, this could be a great solution for you.  It certainly was for me!

A set like this one helps you create different sized near-perfect circles with no hassle.  You can also use the small tips to create more detailed designs if you struggle like I do with using a brush to create free-hand art.  I find the latter especially taxing when using my left hand to create the designs on my right hand.

A common alternative to nail dotting tools like these, is the use of toothpicks and bobby pins to create a similar effect.  But you won’t have access to the same size range that you would with a set of tools like this one.  So for $1, I figured I couldn’t go wrong. 🙂

Seeing as this was my first attempt at nail dotting, I wanted to do a very simple manicure to begin with.  I basically just wanted to test out the different sizes and see if I could get used to using them.

Bubble nails, dot cluster manicure

I used Turned up Turquoise (neon nail polish by China Glaze) as my base and then created small dot clusters using black and white nail polishes (Liquid Vinyl by Orly and Paper Mache by Finger Paints respectively).

Polka Dot Nails

This manicure was super easy and quick to create.  I had everything done in just a few minutes!  I look forward to getting more creative with these nail dotters and stretching my limits when it comes to nail art.  If there are any pointers or secrets for using these, please let me know!

Dot Cluster Manicure

What is your favourite design or way to use nail dotting tools?

xox,

Shannon

Bubble Manicure, Nail Dotting Design


A Fruity Manicure

nail designs from the m55 plate (fruit designs)

Over the past few months I’ve had three posts about Konad Nail Stamping.  Not that long ago I had a mini-haul and got a bunch of new plates and some new Konad Special Nail Polishes.  From that haul, one of the plates I was dying to try was the m55 stamping plate with a bunch of fruit designs on it.  I thought this was just too cute and couldn’t pass it up when I saw it.  Wouldn’t you say that it’s the perfect time of year to be sporting fresh fruit on your finger tips!?!?

bright multi-fruit manicure (nail stamping using the m55 plate)

The m55 plate from Konad has the following nail designs:

  • a bunch of Grapes
  • a slice of Watermelon
  • a cluster of Blueberries
  • a couple of Strawberries
  • a slice of Citrus (could be lime, lemon or orange depending on the colour you choose to paint it)
  • and half a kiwi
nail designs from the m55 plate (fruit designs)

This was my first time using the nail stamping plates where I had to use multiple colours of nail polish on the same design.  I wasn’t sure how well that would work out…but it was surprisingly easy.

fruit nail designs (nail stamping, plate m55)

Want to know how??  Let’s get started with the picture tutorial!

  1. Select a base colour of nail varnish for your nails.  Because I knew I was going to do multi-coloured fruit, I chose to use a white nail polish so I could have a blank canvas.  After all, I wanted the focus of this manicure to be on the fruit, not the base.  For this step, I used Paper Mache nail polish from Fingerpaints (available at Sally Beauty Supply).white nail polish to use as a base
  2. Let your base colour dry completely!  If your nails aren’t completely dry, when you push down on your nail with the stamp you might smear your base.)
  3. Next, lay your plate flat on a piece of paper towel and be sure to have your scraper, stamper and a cotton ball ready (your cotton ball should have some nail polish remover on it).nail stamping tutorial
  4. Using your Konad Special Nail Polishes, paint the designs in the colours you want your fruit.  You can see my example picture here for the blueberry design:How to: Nail Stamping
  5. Next, you want to grab your scraper and hold it at a 45 degree angle to the plate.  Swiftly swipe the extra polish off the plate.  This will leave a little bit of polish in the grooves of the design leaving you something that looks like this: nail stamping tutorial
  6. Quickly press the stamp down onto the design, transferring the design to your stamp.nail stamping tutorial
  7. Now, you want to either press, or roll the stamp across the surface of your nail.  This will transfer the design from the stamp to your nail.blueberry nail art (m55 nail plate)
  8. Grab your cotton swab, wipe clean the scraper, stamp and nail plate.
  9. Repeat for all nails.
Fruit Nail Artfunky nail art

So tell me, what do you think of this Fruity Manicure???  Do you have a favourite Konad nail plate you like to use for stamping?

nail designs using the m55 plate (fruit)

Thanks for reading!

xox,
Shannon

Please check out my full Konad Nail Tutorial here.

***Konad nail stamping products can be purchased on-line at Konad Nail Art and at Nail Polish Canada.***

Green, Black, Blue, White, Purple and Red Special Konad Nail Polishes


Have a Heart

Flirty Tankini and Have a Heart nail polishes (how to make the perfect coral manicure)

After my “too dark for Spring” mani “Seduce Me“, I was ready for something bright, fun and refreshing.  I decided to go with a new neon I picked up from the China Glaze summer neon collection for 2012, “Flirty Tankini”.  This shade reminds me a bit of “Flip Flop Fantasy”, another neon by China Glaze (from their permanent collection).

Flirty Tankini is a super pretty coral neon with just the right amount of shimmer!

Flirty Tankini: indoors with flash

coral nail polish from China Glaze's 2012 neon collection for summer

Flirty Tankini: outdoors in natural daylight

I was dying to use my new top coat by Nicole that is a clear base with tiny little glitters and big chunky hearts (purchased at Wal-Mart for about $9).

Nicole by OPI - heart nail polish

If you are wanting a heart on each nail, be prepared to do some fishing to pull them out of the bottle.  It’s not overly convenient, but very much worth it in my opinion!

Nicole by OPI heart nail polish top coat

Because the hearts are so large, they will stick up off your nail a little bit.  Once I had them all in place, after about a minute I top coated again with this polish (avoiding the hearts) to help seal them into the manicure.  It really helped smooth out the texture on my nail and I’ve had no issues with any hearts falling off.

Have a heart nail polish from Nicole by OPI

Flirty Tankini and Have a Heart nail polishes

What do you think of this fun coral manicure?  Do you have a favourite from the China Glaze 2012 Summer Neon Collection?

xox,

Shannon

Flirty Tankini and Have a Heart nail polishes (how to make the perfect coral manicure)


a NEON manicure for the TIGRESS in you

Animal Print Manicure

I love bright funky manicures and with the purchase of my new Konad Nail Plates, I couldn’t help but create something wild.

Neon Manicure with Zebra Print on top

What you’ll need:

konad nail stamping tutorial

  1. Nail lacquers to use as your base.  I chose to use three colours.

    Purple Panic, Solar Flare and Turned up Turquoise

    Purple Panic (neon) by China Glaze, Solar Flare by Nina Ultra PRO and Turned up Turquoise (neon) by China Glaze

  2. A nail lacquer thick enough to use for your pattern.  I am using Konad Special Polish in black.
  3. Your plate of choice.  I’m using M57, a konad nail plate featuring mainly animal print designs.
  4. The stamp.
  5. The scraper.
  6. Nail Polish remover.
  7. A couple of cotton balls and q-tips.

***If you don’t know of somewhere in your area that sells the stamp/scraper/plates/polishes you can purchase online from either www.nailpolishcanada.com or www.konadnailart.com.***

How To:

  • Paint your nails with your base colour(s).  I started out by doing a stripe down the centre of my nail in Solar Flare by Nina Ultra Pro (a very neon fluorescent yellow).  You don’t need to worry about how straight it is, because you will be going over the edges with your other shades. Solar Flare neon polish by nina ultra pro
  • Then add another colour to the outside of each finger nail. (Again, not the biggest deal if your lines aren’t perfectly straight.  Once you are completely done your manicure, the focus will be on the stripes, not how straight the lines are underneath.)neon striped nails
  • And then of course, take your third colour and add it to the inside of each finger nail.  At this point, your nails should be completely painted.  bright manicure
  • Next step is the stamping of your zebra print/tiger stripes on top.  For a full picture tutorial on nail stamping, please visit my post Konad Nail Stamping.  Lay your plate on a piece of paper towel. nail designs by Konad
  • Cover your design with your special Konad nail polish.  M57 konad plate
  • Use your scraper to clear off all of the extra polish.  how to get zebra nails
  • Press your stamp onto the plate design.  nail stamping tutorial
  • Roll the stamp onto your nail, transferring the design.nail stamping tutorial  If you have short nails like I do, the pattern will get all over your skin as well.  (Don’t worry, it is easy to clean off afterwards using a q-tip and some nail polish remover.)
  • Using a cotton ball with some nail polish remover on it, clean the plate, scraper and stamp before repeating for each nail.  (This might seem tedious, but I promise, it only takes about 10 minutes to stamp all of your nails.)
  • Once all of your nails are complete, clean up the skin surrounding your nails and apply a top coat.  I used Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat. Animal Print Manicure how to get perfect zebra nails

This manicure is super bright and fun.  And I love the endless combinations with something like this.  You can change the colours underneath; how many you use, the direction you apply them…there is just so much you can do!  What do you guys think of the finished look?

Neon Manicure with zebra print

xox,

Shannon


A Konad Nail Design

Stamping tutorial (konad nail art)

You might remember the Konad Nail Stamping Tutorial I did a couple of months ago showcasing my first look at the starter kit I purchased.  I enjoyed the product and the end result a lot.  It is such a fun, easy and quick way to do your nails!  Nail stamping allows you to be super creative with both colour and designs and presents endless opportunities to mix and match.  You never have to have the same manicure twice!

My only problem was that  my starter kit had no full nail designs or french tip designs.  So I made my way to one of the malls near here that I recently discovered had a kiosk with the Konad products.  Planning to just grab one or two plates, I caved and ended up grabbing a few things….

Konad Nail Stamping

I opted for a couple plates with full nail designs, a plate for just tips and a plate covered in fun summery fruit designs.  I also grabbed a few polishes to give me more options.  You need to use special nail polish for stamping, the majority of standard nail polishes out there aren’t thick enough and won’t work in the plates.  You can try it though if you want and you might get lucky with a couple of your shades.

Let’s take a quick look at my new plates:

Stamping plate with just tip designs

Full Nail Stamping Plate

Animal Print Plate

Stamping plate with fruit designs

I knew I was going to have a really hard time trying to pick, so I asked my husband what he thought I should do.  I expected him to say something about not caring….but instead he picked an image from plate M80 right away.  I asked what colours and he immediately said black with the design in white.  I couldn’t believe I’d actually gotten an opinion about my nails out of him…so I did exactly what he suggested. 🙂

What you’ll need:

Nail Stamping tutorial

  1. A nail lacquer to use as your base.  I used Liquid Vinyl (a very shiny black) by Orly.
  2. A nail lacquer thick enough to use for your pattern.  I am using Konad Special Polish in white.
  3. Your plate of choice.  I’m using M80, a konad nail plate.
  4. The stamp.
  5. The scraper.
  6. Nail Polish remover.
  7. A couple of cotton balls and q-tips.

***If you don’t know of somewhere in your area that sells the stamp/scraper/plates/polishes you can purchase online from either www.nailpolishcanada.com or www.konadnailart.com.***

How To:

  • Paint your nails with the base nail lacquer of your choice.  Do however many coats are required to reach an opaque look.  For me with Orly’s Liquid Vinyl, that meant two coats.  Don’t worry too much about the skin around your nails yet, we have to clean them up later anyways.Shiny Black Nail Polish
  • Taking your plate with the design you want, use your special nail polish and cover the design.How To: Konad Nail Stamping
  • Hold your scraper at a 45 degree angle to the plate and cleanly swipe away the polish.  (this will leave only a small amount of polish sitting inside the etched design)Konad Nail Tutorial
  • Very quickly, press your stamp down on the design.  You need to do this immediately after scraping!!  If you aren’t fast enough, only about half the design will make it to the stamp and make it unusable.  It should look nice and clean, like this:Design from plate M80 (Konad)
  • Then, simply roll the stamp over your nail, transferring the design to your nail.Stamping tutorial (konad nail art)
  • Using a cotton ball wet with nail polish remover, wipe the plate and scraper clean.
  • Repeat for all nails.M80 Konad Plate
  • Top coat to seal your design.  I used Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat.Nail Stamping tutorial for konad nail stamping

Two things to note: 

  1. Depending on the design, if you have short(ish) nails like I do, it might be too large for your nail.   Simply roll it on however you like to get the placement you want.  Don’t worry about getting it on your skin.  If you pick at it right away, the skin of polish simply comes right off, or you can wait until the end and use a q-tip to clean up all of your fingers.Nail tutorial for stamping
  2. With a design like this, where you are trying to get all of your nails to look the same, it can be a bit challenging to master the stamp.  Don’t worry too much, I’m pretty sure you will be your biggest critic.nail stamping tutorial for plate m80
What do you think of this look?  Have you tried stamping?  Do you have a favourite plate?  I personally can’t wait to try the zebra print from plate M57!!
Konad Nail Art

For a look at some other plates and designs, please visit my first post on Konad Nail Stamping.

Thanks for reading!

xox,
Shannon

Konad Nail Art


Water Marble: A Burst of Blue

Blue and White nail Marbling tutorial

Feeling like my nails have been neglected as of late, I decided to do a fun water marble last night.  But rather than just random patterns, I opted for a design that would allow me to get a similar look on each nail.

Using Sexy in the City (blue polish by China Glaze) and Paper Mache (white polish from Fingerpaints) I came up with this:

A Burst of Blue Water Marble

If Nail Marbling is something new for you, please check out my nail marbling introduction here complete with lots of photos.

  1. In order to recreate this look you will need: scotch tape, a cup of room temperature water, toothpicks, white nail polish and a second contrasting polish of your choice.
  2. Prep your nails with two coats of your white polish.
  3. Scotch tape around your nails to make your life easier later.
  4. Begin dropping your polish into the water, alternating white and your second colour.  Create a bullseye that looks something like this: Nail Marbling Tutorial
  5. Take a toothpick and create the design of your choice.  For my burst design, drag your toothpick in towards the centre, creating an almost flower like shape.  (If your centre gets super messy, take your toothpick and push it straight down into the centre and pull it back out, keeping your toothpick straight.  This will clean up your centre.)Nail marbling tutorial
  6. Now, with your nail parallel to the surface of the water, hovering over the very centre of your design, push it down into the water.  Then, using your toothpick clean up the rest of the polish from the surface of the water (leaving your finger submerged.)
  7. Once the surface of the water is clean, go ahead and bring your finger out of your water.
  8. Give your fingers a bit of time to dry before removing the tape.  I like to do a complete hand before I remove the tape. Blue and White nail Marbling tutorial
  9. Then, all you need to do is a little bit of clean up.  Using a q-tip and a touch of nail polish remover, clean up the areas that your tape didn’t protect.
  10. Viola!  A Burst of Blue manicure.

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