31 Days of Manicures Day 31: Recreate Favorite Challenge

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Are we really at the end of this challenge? It feels like it went by way too fast, wow.

Anyway, today is the LAST DAY of the challenge. Can you believe it?

Today I had to recreate my favorite challenge. And the one I had the most fun with was *drumroll* water marbling! Of course. I have a lot of fun with that one when it works, and lately it’s been working like a charm.

This manicure all started when I was testing out color combinations on fake nails, and did an orange and lime green combination, showed it to my boyfriend and he commented that it looked a little like rainbow sherbet. So I added in a pink and literally made rainbow sherbet.

Marbled Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear Green With Envy and Sun Kissed with Shades of the Season Pink over Sally Hansen Hard to Get. Topped with Sally Hansen Diamond Strength Diamond Flash.

I’m really proud of this marble, it’s my first successful one with three colors. There are a few dings (some air bubbles on my pinkie and I smudged my ring finger after putting on the top coat), but I can live with them.

So, that’s it. The challenge is OVER. Here’s a recap of all 31 days:

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So, tomorrow the start of the Abstract Challenge.

Also, I’m going to attempt to start some regular posting everyday for when all these challenge posts are over (but I’m getting in the habit next month).

Monday – Makeup Mondays: Where I discuss beauty things other than nail polish.
Tuesday – Try it on Tuesdays: Where I break out an untried polish and show it some love.
Wednesday – Pink Wednesdays: “On Wednesdays we wear pink.” Based on a bit from the movie Mean Girls, where I’ll wear a manicure featuring a pink polish.
Thursday – Treatment Thursdays: Where I give a detailed review of a top coat, base coat, drying drop, or other fantastic non-polish thing that keeps my nails looking awesome.
Friday – Favorite Fridays: Where I show off a polish that has a permanent place in my stash.
Saturday – Smorgasbord Saturdays: Where I discuss things other than beauty.
Sunday – Stash Sundays: Admittedly taking a page out of Imperfectly Painted‘s book (though she uses a different name and did hers on Saturdays), this one will be slowly showing off my stash.

31 Days of Manicures Day 30: Tutorial Inspired Nails

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This is almost it. There’s just one more tomorrow. Wow.

Anyway, today’s nails were inspired by a tutorial, and from the moment I saw this tutorial I had to try it:

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I’m not usually a fan of things other than polish on my nails. I don’t do loose glitter, or rhinestones, or Fimo canes. But this? This I had to try.

I ended up getting a different set from the one in the tutorial, which was actually perfect because it gives me a chance to give the summer brights a couple more hurrahs (tomorrow’s mani is bright colors too) before September and fall hits, and I switch it up to the neutrals and dark colors.

I matched up the Lime flocking powder to Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Lickety Split Lime and the Carrot flocking powder to Wet N Wild Blazed. No top coat because the flocking powder masquerades as one, so a regular top coat would lessen the effect. I painted my nails in the same color blocking style I used here.

It’s an… interesting look, to say the least. I keep touching my fingers! I would like to try the technique again, now that I know what I’m doing. I have a couple bald spots on a few nails, but I know what to do to fix that.

Anyway, those are my tutorial nails. Tomorrow I recreate my favorite challenge, and then I move on to the abstract nail and black and white challenges. OMG.

31 Days of Manicures Day 29: Supernatural Inspired Nails

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IMAG0358 Can you believe we’re almost done with August? And the 31 Day Challenge? I can’t! Anyway, today is Supernatural Inspired Nails. Bubbling_Cauldron_Wallpaper_oizzx I decided to do something a little different today. I went with trying to recreate a bubbling witches cauldron (which was an idea I came up with yesterday, I was originally going to do ghosts). I started with two coats of NYC Sidewalkers. I then taped off and used Kleancolor Black to create the cauldron. Then I dotted using Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear Green With Envy. On my right hand I tried for a glow in the dark look, so I dotted over Green With Envy with Expressions Glow In The Dark Green, but I forgot to do that on my left hand. Used Milani Art of Silver for the smoke wisps and topped it all off with NYC Extra Shiny Top Coat. Two days left! Holy cow. Tomorrow is Tutorial Inspired Nails. I’m excited! Also, since I’ve had so much fun doing daily manicure challenges, I’m doing two more next month! ABSTRACTNAILARTCHALLENGE! On the odd days, I’m going to do the Abstract Nail Art Challenge… 422889_342367549133074_202994179737079_856568_610436515_n … and on the even days (until the 20th), I’m doing the Black & White Challenge. Look out for those.

DIY: Peel off Base Coat

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The talk of the nail polish world is Essence’s Peel Off Base Coat. I first heard about it from a post on More Nail Polish, which led to me to further posts from Pretty Purple Polish and Lab Muffin.

It was the Lab Muffin post that intrigued me, because she noted that the base coat was essentially PVA glue and water, and even further research on PVA glue revealed something even more interesting.

What is PVA glue you might ask? Well, that was the thing that intrigued me the most. Most of you will know it as Elmer’s Glue. Yes, the same glue you used in construction paper portraits in kindergarten. Or, if you were like me, you spread it all over your hands, let it dry, and… hey, you would peel it off.

How come it took us this long to figure this out?

The most common use of this base coat is for under glitter manis. No more foil, no more scrubbing all night. None of that.

Or is that true? Click the jump to find out.

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31 Days of Manicures Day 28: Flag Inspired Nails

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I have known since I first heard of this challenge that I was doing this for Inspired by a Flag Day, and nothing was going to change my mind on it.

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Yes, I was inspired by the Finnish flag today.

Now, let me explain. I do not live in Finland. I have never even been there. I live in the States. However, my great grandmother (my grandmother’s – the one I discussed yesterday – mother) was a Finnish immigrant to the States, coming here with her mother and siblings when she was two years old, and I have had a love for Finland and my Finnish heritage for a while now. And what better way to continue honoring my late grandmother (who I was extremely close to) with today’s nails as well.

I started with two coats of Sally Hansen Hard to Get (who is getting a proper swatching later today). I did the blue with acrylic paint. Topped with NYC Extra Shiny Top Coat (it’s right there at my workstation, closer than my Sally Hansen lol)

A note on using acrylic paint vs polish for detail work: acrylic paint is easier to work with, especially for little details, but it can dry slower than polish (at least the blue paint dried slower than the blue polish I would have used for this, Revlon Royal, would have), and I was too hasty on the top coat. There was some smearing of the blue.

And now, to take it off. Not because I don’t like it, but because I have two more posts to prepare for: I’m finally making my haul/swatch video of the polishes I bought last week, and then I’m trying out the DIY version of the Essence Peel Off Base Coat for myself.

And for tomorrow, Inspired by the Supernatural (sorry folks, not the show, lol). I have two idea in my head, let’s see which I do.

31 Days of Manicures Day 27: Artwork Inspired Nails.

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Today was a tough one for me, and I had been planning it all month, and then all my plans for today went out the window. After searching and searching for a piece of art that was easy to do but not overdone, I was originally planning to do a Pollock inspired splatter mani, but I realized I need more practice with that. So then I had a realization: today would have been my maternal grandmother’s birthday if she were still here (we unfortunately lost her in 2001). So I wanted to do a mani honoring her, but still had the challenge mani to do. So I figured, why not combine the two? So I shot some relatives some texts and figured out from my aunt that my grandmother liked Monet, which led to a quest to try to do a Monet inspired look.

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I found a tutorial on YouTube for a mani inspired by Monet’s Water Lilies, which sparked this look. I actually didn’t use anything in the tutorial, but used it to determine I could do something similar. I started with two coats of Sally Hansen Hard to Get. I then sponged a gradient on using Hard to Get, Shades of the Season Light Blue and Revlon Royal. After that, I used a black striper to make the seaweed, and a small dotting tool with Simple Pleasures Light Pink, then a smaller dotting tool with Hard to Get. Topped off with NYC Extra Shiny Top Coat. I’m happy with the look, it actually came out exactly as I thought it would in my head, which is a rarity for me, lol. Tomorrow is Flag Inspired Nails. I’ve always known what I’m doing for this one (and it, in fact, also honors my grandmother, so that’s cool.)