Sunday, July 29, 2012

Tutorial: Studded V-gap



Hi everyone, it's time for a new tutorial! :-) This time I'll show you how to make the studded V-gaps I used in my third day of the 31 Day Challenge. What I like about this design, is that it goes well with both subtle and bold shades, adding an edgy element. It's not the quickest look to make though, so I recommend using it on an accent nail (or two) or for a special occasion. Let's get started!


Start with the cutting of your tape strips, you'll need two for each nail you'll decorate. The way I cut the strips is by taking off a small piece off the roll which I cut in thinner strips lengthwise.
(For this tutorial I'm using colored tape because it's more visible, though I usually use regular stationery tape. It's more flexible than painters tape for example, plus the translucency is an advantage with certain designs.)
Then apply your basecolor. This can be anything as long as it doesn't distract from the studded V-gap. So make sure your basecolor isn't too dark or has a too striking finish if you want the black of the design to really pop.
Let the basecolor dry and use a fastdrying topcoat if needed. (I like to use Seche Vite.)
Now place the tape strips one by one on the nail, forming a V-shaped hole at the cuticles. Let the top ends of the strips start on the nail just below the cuticles, rather than overlapping them. This way you'll prevent polish from seeping under.
When the strips are in the right position, press them down firmly so that they stay put.

Then apply a black creme polish over the V-gap you created and remove the tape strips as soon as possible (so when it's still wet), this will create crisper lines.
Clean up excess polish on the skin in case needed.


Finally add your 'studs' along the edge of the V-gap with a dotting tool and a silver polish. Begin with the dot in the middle, to make even spreading of the dots easier. Once the design is dry, finish with a topcoat and your edgy look is done!

Finally some useful tips:
  • For my tape manis, all I use is regular stationery tape. But you might prefer something else, so just experiment with different sorts of tape to figure out what works best for you.
  • For your base color you can use any polish you like, however one-coaters will allow you to place the tape much sooner because those are usually fast drying. Of course you can also quicken the drying of polishes that require several coats to cover, by applying a fast drying topcoat. (I use Seche Vite). 
  • Your layering color(s) can be either a one- or two-coater. Because you've already applied a base color, most polishes that usually take two coats to cover now will do with one.
  • You might want to leave the cut strips somewhere else than the edge of your desk/table, to prevent them from getting stuck to the surface while you're busy. You do not want to have to peel them off with your freshly painted claws!
  • Apply your layering color in one thin (but opaque) coat, this will create crisper lines.
  • When you're removing the tape strips, try to remove them individually, if you can, because most of the time your design will come out neater this way
  • Using tweezers to remove the tape strips can prevent your freshly painted nails from getting smudged.
  • It's not always necessary to start all over if you've messed up your design, often a little touch-up with a nailart brush can solve the problem.
  • If you want to use a matt topcoat, use a regular one underneath. My experience with matt topcoats is that they smudge the design very easily, even when it's completely dry. Applying a normal topcoat first will prevent that.
  • Moisterize your skin afterwards, because the tape can really dry it out!
  • You can practice this tutorial on your old mani that you applied a day (or more) before. That way it's certain that the base color is dry.
  • Have fun and practice makes perfect ;)

I would absolutely love to see your attempt on my design, so feel free to leave a link to your creation in the comment section!



Polishes I used in this post are KOH Mediterranean Sea, Color Club Where's The Soiree? and Essence Romeo.

Friday, July 27, 2012

31 Day Challenge, day 3: Yellow


Yellow nails! These took a long time to get done because of the design on my ringfinger, so I made studded V-gaps on the rest on my fingers, which I actually liked better in the end. :-) The yellow basecolor is H&M's Lemon Tree. This was three to four coats which I admit is a lot. But the formula is great to work with, very smooth and no dragging, making it my favorite yellow next to Color Club Almost Famous. The silver I used for the dots/studs is Essence Romeo and the black is Color Club Where's The Soiree? as usual. What are your thoughts on this yellow rock look?

Monday, July 23, 2012

31 Day Challenge, day 2: Orange


Day 2 of the 31 Day Challenge! This time the challenge was to do orange nails and it was truly a challenge. I had a hard time coming up with something with orange as the main color instead of an accent color. Finally I decided to go with trusty clouds (tutorial here) combined with two shades of green, as I find orange to combine best with certain greens or blues. The lovely pastel orange is H&M's Peach Me Soon, in the middle you see Orly Ancient Jade and I've got Essence Bella on the tips. I look forward to my next challenge: yellow nails! See you soon. :-)

Saturday, July 21, 2012

31 Day Challenge, day 1: Red


That's right! I'm finally doing the 31 Day Challange! The task for day 1 is to make red nails and this is my attempt. Okay, so it's just as much grey as it is red. :-P But I decided to allow myself to have a little bit of freedom with this challenge, hope that's okay! ;-) For this simple fifty-fifty tape mani I started with a sexy red basecolor, #85 from Hema (a Dutch department store). When that had dried, I covered half of each nail with tape and painted the other half with a thin layer of China Glaze Concrete Catwalk and Tinsel Town. After removing the tape again, this is the end result; vampy and sparkly, can't say no to that! ^^
Because I'd like to enjoy the results of each challenge for more than just a day, I'm going to have to cheat a tiny bit with the original schedule of a challenge a day. As a compromise I promise to work twice as hard on each little project. ;-) Thank you for reading!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Divergence


Hello lovely readers! For this post I have this colorful divergence mani to show you. In the pictures I'm holding China Glaze Life Preserver, a dusty orange creme. Orange is probably my least favorite color when it comes to nail polish (next to browns), but I actually really like Life Preserver in this mani! It adds that bit of warmth to the whole. The other polishes you see in this tape mani are Diamond Cosmetics Don't Teal My Heart Away (absolutely smitten with this polish ♥) and China Glaze 2030, the gold chrome. Thank you for reading! :-)

Friday, July 06, 2012

Solid Gold Stripes


Hi guys! Today I'm showing you the third and last look I made with Orly Solid Gold. The polish dries fast and combines great with many other colors. For these stripes I applied two coats Solid Gold, then I placed two small tape strips on each nail, close to the tips. Finally I applied Catrice New York on top, removed the strips and added a layer of topcoat, voilĂ ! So which one's your favorite? The fifty-fifty mani, the fierce French or today's stripes? ^^ Thanks for reading!

Monday, July 02, 2012

Fierce French

The black part in this picture reminds me of the M of Maroon 5, love them! ^^

Hello everyone! In my last post I used Orly Solid Gold in a fifty-fifty tape mani. I liked Solid Gold so much that I prepared two more looks with it and today's semi-nude look is one of them. I first started with a zigzag in black (tutorial here) and when that was dry I added the gold chevrons with Solid Gold. It dries with a matte finish as you could see in my last post, but this time I went for glossy by adding topcoat. I'm not sure which finish I like most - the edgy matte one or the sparkly glossy one. They're both so cool! :-) What do you think? Thanks for reading!