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four nail art looks for valentine’s day

February 6, 2012

Love is in the air, y’all. Valentine’s Day is next week, so it’s time to dust off the hot pinks you’ve had in hibernation all winter and get your nail art on.

Scotch Tape Heart Accent Nail 

I originally toyed around with the idea of using a heart-shaped sticker as a stencil, but when you go to remove the sticker, it’s almost impossible not to smudge the rest of your wet polish. So I turned to my trusty friend, Scotch tape.

Begin by painting one nail a solid color – I’m using China Glaze Flip Flop Fantasy, a nearly-neon pink. Add a good top coat to this nail. Wait a bit before moving on to the next steps if you can – you want your polish to be completely dry.

Next, cut a piece of Scotch tape roughly two inches long. Lightly fold the tape in half (don’t press it together very hard) and cut out half of a heart on the fold with a pair of scissors.

Do you remember doing this with construction paper in elementary school? It’s like riding a bike…

Unfold your tape, and voila!

Center the heart over your finger and press down on the tape to create a good seal over the top of your nail.

Carefully paint over the heart-shaped stencil in a darker color – I chose Zoya Ali.

I like the “status nail” look, so I simply painted the rest of my nails with two coats of Zoya Ali.

This look is super girly, but for one day a year, I think that is just swell.

Glitter Tips

For a simple but classy glitter look, I began by painting my nails with Essie Silken Cord, a glossy, bright red.

I don’t love Sally Hansen Gem Crush – it peeled off in full nail-shaped sheets during Thanksgiving dinner when I wore it for the first time (though picking at the remains was a welcome distraction from family dinner conversation!) It isn’t the greatest, but I decided Gem Crush in Cha-Ching! would be just fine for my glittery tips.

Cha-Ching! looks just like Getting Miss Piggy With It from the OPI Muppets Collection, which likely has a better formula.

Rather than painting one horizontal line all the way across the tip, I dabbed on very short vertical lines until I’d covered the entire length of my nail tip. You could tape off your tips if you want a perfectly-straight line, but I think painting it by hand worked equally well.

Finish with a good top coat, and that’s it! Sparkly but not too over-the-top. I think these red nails would be stunning paired with a simple black dress.

Little Pink Tuxedo

Zooey Deschanel made waves at the Golden Globes this year with her tuxedo nail art. I loved seeing nail art on the red carpet, but the black-and-white tuxedo look isn’t exactly breaking news. I did a twist on this classic look for V-Day.

I began by painting my nails with two coats of China Glaze Flip Flop Fantasy.

After adding a top coat and letting it dry completely, I used Scotch tape to section off the bottom of each nail. I painted the bottom portion of each nail with Revlon Plum Seduction, a darker fuschia color. I used tape, but if you have a fairly steady hand you could definitely just freely paint this stripe onto the base of your nail.

For more details on my Scotch tape technique, check out my modern half-moon mani tutorial here.

Next, I pulled most of the cotton fluff off of a Q-tip, making the tip very small. I carefully dipped the Q-tip into the tiniest bit of polish I could manage and dotted three dots of Zoya Ali vertically up the center of each nail. Some of my dots are smaller or larger than others, but what’re you gonna do…

That’s all there is to this pink tuxedo look! I think it’s a fun update to the overdone black-and-white design.

Vampy Valentine’s Day

If you’re not one for girly pinks, this look might be more up your alley.

I began by painting my nails in China Glaze Ruby Pumps, a vibrant, glittery red. After applying a top coat and letting everything dry completely, I put the edge of a piece of Scotch tape on top of my nail to tape off a triangle.

I then painted over the exposed nail with two coats of OPI Suzi Skis in the Pyrenees, an almost-black grey. I carefully removed the tape to reveal the glittery red triangle underneath.

Wait for your polish to dry completely, and then add a good top coat. Simple, but striking!

So grab your polishes and get in the Valentine’s Day spirit! Or you could do this instead…

I fully support that, too.

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. February 6, 2012 2:02 PM

    LOVE! I think I’ll try the first or second one for my Valentine’s look. I’d better start practicing now:-)

  2. February 6, 2012 2:08 PM

    such nail envy :) Reading your posts each week makes me want to change my own polish every day so I can give all these looks a shot!

  3. February 6, 2012 2:11 PM

    Thanks, ladies. Lianna – you were rocking the glitter status nail on Saturday! I was impressed.

  4. February 11, 2012 10:00 PM

    Thanks so much for the heart-tape idea Anna! I just got my first Konad plates and am finding none of my oodles of polishes work with it! Spent waaaay too much time trying to get one to work with the heart design to no avail. So thanks so much for this great idea! I’m rockin’ the hearts on my fingers for Valentine’s Day after all!


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