Did anyone expect to see so much amazing nail art at the Olympics this year? The athletes have official team and country uniforms, but so many of them are showing their spirit and style on their nails, and I can’t get enough of it. Take a look at just a few of these sweet manis…
(Photo source: Buzzfeed)
Pretty killer, right?
For a few of my own ideas, head on over to SheKnows where I’m sharing five Olympic-inspired designs.
If you love duochromes and metallics, New Bohemian, the latest collection from China Glaze, is for you. CG is almost impossible to find in NYC, so I was excited to to get my hands on two of these new “luster chromes” this morning.
First up is Want My Bawdy (that name, seriously?) – a bold sapphire with a shimmery finish.
The duochrome effect barely shows on the nail, but I still love it. I’ve been wearing a lot of saturated blues this summer (Kure Bazaar Mon Bleu and Nails Inc. Baker Street, mostly), but the finish on this one is unique. It required three coats and is a little on the runny side, but this one is still a winner in my book.
The other color I have to show you today is Rare & Radiant. I don’t know about radiant, but this shade certainly isn’t rare! It’s essentially Chanel Peridot or OPI Just Spotted the Lizard, to name a couple.
I have friends who love this shade, but it’s not for me. The brush strokes are quite visible since it has such a metallic finish, but aside from that it applied nicely in two coats.
What do you think of these new colors? Let me know in the comments!
French manicures have been a nail salon staple for ages. The traditional pink and white look isn’t quite a fashion faux-pas, but it can still feel pretty dated, especially for the style-minded gal. Here are a few ways to pay homage to the classic design while adding a fun, modern twist.
Saturated Statement Colors: There’s nothing stuffy about a French mani in edgy, on-trend shades. You can use a circular reinforcement sticker to create a perfect line, but I like to go freehand. For better control, try creating several short vertical lines across the tip of the nail rather than one long horizontal stroke. I turned to the Fall 2012 Pantone Color Report for seasonal inspiration, settling on two coats of Kure Bazaar Afrika with a cobalt blue tip in Nails Inc. Baker Street.
Seeing Spots: For a whimsical look, dip the end of a paper clip, Q-tip, or dotting tool in polish to create a line of polka dots across the tip of each nail. This works well on short nails like mine since the look doesn’t require much of a nail tip.
Glossy vs. Matte: Have you tried a matte top coat yet? If not, run, don’t walk! Try Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics Flatline or Essie Matte About You to give any polish a matte finish in an instant. For this subdued yet unexpected French, I added a matte top coat to the bottom portion of my polished nail, leaving the tip glossy to create a contrasting finish.
Chevron French: Painting chevron stripes onto the tip of each nail is an on-trend way to jazz up this traditional mani. I began with Cult Nails Mazo, a light nude with gold shimmer. Starting with my lightest purple polish, I made two angled lines to create an upside-down ‘V’ shape at the tip of my nail. I continued with two additional polishes until I was happy with this modern take on a classic.
I swatched Afrika from the French nail polish line Kure Bazaar a few weeks ago, and I’m finally wearing Mon Bleu on my nails today. What’s unique about this relatively new brand is its 85% natural formula, originating from wood pulp, wheat, cotton, potatoes, and corn.
Mon Bleu is a rich cobalt blue that applied in two easy coats. It’s a touch darker, but this shade looks a lot like Nails Inc. Baker Street, which I think suits my skin tone a bit better than Mon Bleu.
Sadly, this polish got chippy on me quite quickly. I painted my nails last night and snapped these photos before yoga class this morning, and I already have two pretty significant chips. The orange polish I tried from this line chipped quickly, too. Even so, the colors are stunning…
Is durability and wear-time something we have to give up if we want to transition to natural or at least less toxic products? Unfortunately, that has held true for me thus far.
Perhaps if I’m going to use polish with a natural formula, I need to switch to a natural base and top coat, too? (I used OPI Natural Nail Base Coat and Sally Hansen Hard as Nails with this mani). I’d love to hear your thoughts!
I spend a decent amount of time looking at Etsy shops – the good, the bad, and the very ugly. It takes a lot to stand out, particularly in the over-saturated jewelry market.
I came across the Milan-based shop cartonBois last night, and it is so well-styled that I have to share it with you.
Artist Grete Bottamedi says her jewelry is for “metropolitan warriors,” inspired by primitive art and tribal designs.
I dig it.
(Cross-posted from my article for the Birchbox Blog – go check them out!)
Do you want fool-proof marble nails in just a few minutes? Get thee to the kitchen, because that roll of plastic wrap is about to become your new best friend. This mani is hard to mess up, and you probably have everything you need on hand so you can try it today!
What you’ll need:
-Two nail polishes. Try experimenting with similar shades, contrasting colors, or different finishes to see which look you like best. I’m using light grey Zoya Dove with a dark blue polish, China Glaze First Mate, on top.
-A glossy top coat. I’m using Sally Hansen Hard as Nails.
-Plastic wrap – the roll in your kitchen will be just fine! Cut 10 small pieces (one for each nail), and don’t worry if it crumples or sticks together. That’s the whole idea here!
Step 1: Paint your nails with your base color (in my case, the light grey). Make sure to let the polish dry completely before moving on.
Step 2: Working with one nail at a time, apply a coat of the second polish over one nail. Grab a piece of plastic wrap and move on to Step 3 while the polish is still wet!
Step 3: Immediately blot the top of your nail once or twice with a crumpled piece of plastic wrap. When the sticky wrap touches the wet polish, it will pull up a bit of the color, creating a marbled effect with the base color underneath. If you pull up too much of the wet polish, just add a little more color and dab at it with plastic wrap again. Continue until you’ve completed each nail.
Step 4: If you ended up with some polish smudges outside the lines, dip a Q-tip or a small brush in nail polish remover to clean up around the edges. The surface of your nails may be a bit bumpy, so finish your marbled mani with one or two layers of top coat to achieve a smooth and shiny surface.
I love the amazing results you can get from such a simple technique – no steady hands or artistic skills required for this nail art look!
Good cards are hard to find. I often leave the drugstore empty handed, as their cards are always too silly, too mushy-gushy, a little offensive, etc. To the rescue: this North Carolina-based Etsy shop, which features hand-lettered cards and notebooks that are beautiful, fun, and a little bit quirky.