Sunday, 3 June 2012


I recently discovered, and absolutely love the blog. 

They also feature Daily Nail Art which I’m finding as good inspiration to have a go at different styles featured, which I hope this blog can do for you!

So I thought I’d share the site with you, and will credit any designs that I find particularly inspirational.

Cut Out Rainbows

This design is the result of an awful lot of time after final deadlines and a fair bit of experimentation. This does take time and patience, so be prepared! But this is possibly my favourite design so far.

My Technique

The initial base coat, one layer.

I used a plain white for one coat to strengthen the colours that would be put on top.

After drying, I used stripers to apply thin vertical stripes of various colours along each nail. 

Once these had dried I then reapplied for a second coat.

After waiting a little longer than usual to ensure the stripes were completely dry (this is very important), I cut lots of thin strips of ordinary sellotape to use as a stencil. I stuck these to fabric before applying to my nails to reduce the adhesive and prevent the tape taking off any of the existing nail polish.

I then stuck these to my nails at diagonal angles, making sure they were stuck right up the edges of each nail. I decided on two strips for each nail, although you can see by the picture that I experimented with three for one nail.

Using a plain black I then applied two coats to each nail, making sure the black was a solid colour, with no visible brush strokes or rainbow colours.

After waiting for these to completely dry, I gently peeled the tape off. With any uneven lines, I used a black nail pen to straighten them up and thicken any that seemed too thin.

Once dry, I finished with a double top coat of clear.

Alternative Techniques and Styles

As I said, this is quite time consuming and fiddly, but if you’ve got a bit of spare time give it a go and experiment a bit with it!

There are nail art stencils out there that can be used just as well, but to be honest sellotape is cheaper, more easily accessed and I found it works just as well.

There’s so many different things you can do with this technique, I’m excited to try out some different ideas!

~ HS

Elegant Christmas Nails/Simple Tips

Normally with this season, I tend to go a little tacky and experimentational, but this year I decided on a classier look, with a dark green (that looks much darker than it was in the photo) base and a glittery silver tip. This is very very simple, no matter how you try to do it. It’s easy, and quick depending on the types of varnish you have.

My Technique

One coat of clear as the base.

Two coats of the main colour – I chose dark green, but other seasonal colours will work just as well.

I then used nail polish remover to take off the tips, along my own natural line, and added the glittery silver. This took several coats to build up to my desired look, so it’s entirely subjective and dependent on what you’re using.

Once dry, I finished with two coats of clear.

Yes, it really is as easy as that!

Alternative Techniques and Styles

As I said before, there’s a multitude of colours to choose from – you’re only limited by your own nail polish collection! It doesn’t have to be Christmas themed at all, I like to use this style a lot during the year.

I also like to play around with the angle of the tips. Here, you can see they're slightly curved to follow the natural line of my nails, but I also like to use diagonal sections, inverted triangles, plain straight edges - there's all sorts that can be tried out!

Another style I really enjoy using with this technique, is to make sure your nails are completely paint free, then add two coats of clear as a base, and then your intended colour to just the tips before finishing with a top coat.

This is very popular, and has been seen around for many years on all sorts of people. My favourites are neon colours during the summer, and darker tones, such as teal and navy and even just a plain black, during the winter.

~ HS

Friday, 1 June 2012

Hogwarts Houses – Part 1

I’m a big fan of Harry Potter, so I’ve attempted many different designs in this genre. This one encompasses all four houses, promoting house unity! It’s really quite, but can be time-consuming the way that I chose to do it. The colours are (L-R) Gryffindor: Red with a Gold inset (although it looks yellow in this photo); Hufflepuff: Yellow with a Black inset; Ravenclaw: Blue with a Bronze inset; Slytherin: Green with a Silver inset. For the thumb, I added an HP themed separate design.

My Technique

I chose not to use a base coat on this occasion, purely because of the way I ended up creating this style.

Using the main colour of each house (red, yellow, blue and green), I added two coats to each assigned nail.

Once dry, I then used a cotton wool pad and nail polish remover, folded in half for the straight edge, to take off two thirds of the colour of each.

I added two coats of the centre stripe over the rest of the nail, from the top of the bottom third to the tip, and allowed to dry.

Again with cotton wool and remover, I took off the top third of the colour, and used the main colour of each to add the last section of colour.

After drying completely, I finished with two coats of clear. It’s important to wait for all sections to dry entirely before adding the top coat, as it will run the colour into each other if not.

FOR THE THUMB, I used a base coat once and two coats of black.

Once dry, I used the nail polish remover and cotton wool pad to take off the tip as close to the intended design as possible.

I then used a white varnish to add the lightning-bolt stripe along the top, going slowly to ensure a straight edge.

Finished with two coats of top coat.

Alternative Techniques and Styles

With pens, stripers or even ordinary brushes, it is very easy to add the centre stripe in a variety of different ways. Take the time to experiment and practise with how you want it to look – polish remover is there for a reason!

This design was completed before my pens arrived, so the thumb would be much easier with. 

Again, it took time and experimenting to get the desired look.

Look out for my other Potter styles – there’ll be many more to post!

~ HS