Thursday, 15 March 2012

Mermaid's Tears

I know these nails aren't very imaginative, I just got a new polish as well as some nail glue and wanted to try them both out. The colour is OPI's 'Mermaid's Tears' from the Pirates of the Caribbean on Stranger Tides collection. It's a interesting shade, haunting yet very pretty. It looks slightly more grey in the bottle than it does on your nails.

This is the nail glue I bought: Nailene Ultra Quick. I read reviews online and it seems to rate pretty highly, plus I like the fact that it's got a brush unlike alot of glues available.

I'm still not sure if I'm a fan of nail glue. Normally if I'm using rhinestones I just stick them into my wet top coat. (If you want a tip for picking up the rhinestones easily see my previous post). I'll admit they did last longer without falling off when I used the glue as opposed to sticking them in the top coat, but maybe they stuck a little too well. Unfortunately for me I didn't read the bottle, and it suggests using a nail polish remover with acetone in it to remove the glue. I try not to use acetone based products on my nails as it dries them out, so I don't currently own an acetone based nail polish remover. I ended up having to pry the rhinestones off with tweezers and filing the excess glue off my nails. NOT RECOMMENDED. If you're using small rhinestones I'd definitely suggest just sticking them in your top coat (you'll also avoid the excess glue surrounding the rhinestones that you can see in my photo). I do have some larger bow shaped rhinestones that I'm going to try out soon that I want to use the glue for, so I'll buy some acetone based remover before then so I can let you know how that goes.

So kids, learn from my mistakes! Try to avoid nail glue unless you're using larger rhinestones that need a little extra staying power ;)

A Very Merry (Belated) Christmas

So obviously I did these nails about 3 months ago at Christmas time. I'm not one of those crazy (yet jolly) people who leave their Christmas decorations up all year round, blasting 'Jingle Bells' from the stereo. I'm posting these to give you ideas for Christmas this year (yes, start planning NOW!). Also if you're one of those people who do the whole 'Christmas in July' thing I guess you can use these as inspiration for that too.

I did two different sets of Christmas nails. I won't go into details about where to get the Christmas themed pretties because I doubt they're still in stock, but once again, EVERYTHING you see in the pictures below (except the polishes) came from ebay.

In the first design I've painted my nails in OPI's 'It's Totally Fort Worth It' from the Texas collection and used holly water decals. These are the ones that you dip in water and slide off onto your nail. I then used a clear top coat and placed 2mm rhinestones into the wet polish (search 'rhinestones' or 'diamontes' on ebay and you will get a tonne of results). I'll give you a tip in a minute for a nifty tool I use to help pick up the rhinestones. The strip of green tape you can see on my ring finger came from ebay too (search 'striping tape'). You can buy them singly from some sellers or in packs of 10 or so from others. Basically it's just that: tape. Sticky on the back so simply place it on and trim it (do this before doing your clear top coat).

For the second design I've painted my nails in OPI's 'Wocka Wocka!' from the Muppets collection, used nail art stickers, and finished with a clear top coat. Yep, super quick and easy!

Now for that nifty tool I mentioned for picking up rhinestones. Basically it's just a pencil, but whatever makes up the 'lead' of the pencil picks up the rhinestones so that you can easily place them on your nails. Don't bother trying to use a normal pencil, it won't work. You can get these for a couple of dollars each (or less) on ebay. Just search 'rhinestone picker'.

So that's it! When Christmas is approaching if you're after water decals or stickers just search 'Christmas nail art' in ebay and see what takes your fancy. Remember to allow time for overseas postage, you don't want your Christmas themed goodies arriving in the New Year!

Wednesday, 14 March 2012


Another quick way to add interest to your nails in additon to nail stickers (see my previous post) if you're in a rush is shatter/crackle polishes. An added bonus is that when they start to chip it isn't too obvious if you've used a light coloured base.

At the moment I only own one shatter, the pink shatter from the 'Pink of Hearts 2011' series by OPI. It's not a colour that I'd highly recommend, but I might go in to further detail on that in another post if I start doing reviews (now there's an idea). If you're going to own only one shatter, I'd suggest black.

Depending on what you do with the base colours, it can be quite effective with the shatter over the top. Try doing stripes in a couple of different colours followed by the shatter for a gradient effect. Unfortunately for me, the pink colour I have isn't too versatile so I can only put it over light coloured bases as it's quite translucent. In the photo below I've layered it over OPI's 'It's Totally Fort Worth It' from their Texas collection and finished off with a clear top coat.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Nail Art Stickers (and humble beginnings)

This was the first time I tried painting my nails since I was about 10. Needless to say I wasn't so good at it at first. So in this post I'm going to introduce to you a handy little tool I use, as well as some nail art stickers (which are a really simple way to make your nails more interesting if you're short on time, or if you're still not very confident in your skills).

This is the tool I use to remove excess polish (aka accidents) from around my nails. Once again, this was an ebay purchase (let's face it, everything is cheaper from Hong Kong as long as you don't mind waiting a couple of weeks for postage). If you don't already, I suggest you get yourself an ebay account if you're serious about experimenting with nail art. Anyway, the tool is basically a pen that you dip in nail polish remover. It easily gets rid of polish and leaves a clean line around the nail. This seller sells a bulk pack of 5 for about $5, but you can buy them as a single item from other sellers. I'm still on my first one, so far it's lasted about 3 months. It comes with 4 tips so once one gets really dirty you just swap it over.

The second item I want to introduce in this post, is nail art stickers. Once again, ebay purchases. Type in 'nail art stickers' in the search bar and the results are endless. Some of my favourites are from this seller. However, if you're going to use these I suggest you invest in some good quality non-acetone nail polish remover like the professionals use, as these can be a bit of a pain to get off otherwise. Unfortunately I don't remember which polish I used as a base colour in the first 2 photos below, it was a few months ago. I think it was just some cheapy I bought when I didn't actually think I'd keep this up lol. The polish in the 3rd photo is OPI's 'Light My Sapphire'.

Nail Foils

To be honest, these nail foils are what started it all. A friend of mine had some of these and so I started using them myself. They're great if you're short on time, or don't want to be stressed about smudging your polish. There are a lot of brands available, but the ones I've had the most success with (as well as being reasonably priced) are these ones by 'Nail Art World'. I also found that they fit my nails without me needing to trim them down. To use them, you simply dip them in water one at a time and slide the design off onto your nail, let it dry, and then apply a clear top coat.

As they're an Asian brand (and I live in Australia), I buy mine from ebay. If you're after a wide selection, this seller has a pack of 25 for about $15. If you just want a couple of packs to start with, there are a few sellers on ebay that do sell this brand, just search 'nail water decal' or something similar and make sure the packaging looks the same as in my picture below.

My only complaint with these is that I found some top coats 'melt' the design. The pack comes with 2 spares, so if you're going to use these I suggest that you test your top coat on one nail first before rushing in and doing all of them so that you can replace the foil if it does melt.

The Beginning...


I assume you've found your way here because you, like me, have a passion for nail art. For me, it's a hobby I started a few months ago to pass the time, and has quickly turned into an obsession. If you didn't come here because you have a passion for nail art, welcome anyway. I hope you'll stick around!

A little about me. I have an advanced diploma in fashion. I see my nails as a fashion accessory, just like shoes and necklaces (amongst other wonderful things). I guess most would describe me as a little quirky. I grew bored very quickly of just having one colour on my finger tips, and quickly started experimenting with nail art and haven't looked back.

I don't use fake nails, the nails you see are all mine. If I break one (heaven forbid) I just put up with it until it grows out again. I see no point in damaging it further by gluing a piece of plastic to it. I should also point out that I have no training and I am in no way a professional. Like plenty of others, I'm a beginner, and the nail art I do is at a level appropriate for me. I'm not pretending to be the best at what I'm doing, I'm just hoping to inspire others who are also just starting out. The polishes and tools I use I've paid for myself, and have not been given to me as a promotional strategy by companies.

I do my nails once or twice a week depending on how well the polish lasts without chipping, so check back regularly for new designs. I'll endeavour to provide information on what colours I've used and where I've bought any tools from, as well as how-to steps in case you feel inclined to give anything a go yourself. I take a lot of inspiration from others too, so of course I'll give credit where credit is due :)

I'll do a bulk upload to start with showing you some of what I've done in the last few months. Feel free to leave comments, I love to hear what others think! (Don't like it? Don't be afraid to say so, I'll take it as constructive criticism) ;)