Sunday, April 29, 2012

It's a monster flashback!

Here's another flashback, this time one of my favorite manicures of all time! I still get tempted to do another manicure like this, although I get sidetracked with all the other designs I want to do. Sometimes it's frustrating being creative!

Anyway, I hope you enjoy these monsters, because I know I did!


I have just finished the silliest set of nail tips that I think have ever existed. Rhinestones? Heck no, that's too elegant! Roses? BORING. (Not really, but go with me on this!) I wanted something different, something that really expressed my inner self. I wanted monsters! But not just any monsters. No... I wanted monsters with WIGGLY EYES!

That's right. These nail tips have monsters on them, and those monsters have 3D wiggly eyes that actually move! Some of them look excited, some of them look menacing, but most of them look kind of confused, and I really like that! They're silly, and they're weird, and they're in halloween colors to boot! Purple, green, and orange combine on a stark black background to make these monsters really pop.

Now, I started these ages ago. I got the test one finished way back on August 6, believe it or not! They clearly didn't take that much time to complete. But I got the bases painted and then had a huge moment of fear: could I finish them? Could I make them as cute as I hoped they would be? And those nails sat, and waited, taunting me simply by being unfinished. It was almost depressing!

Then one night I realized that hey, it doesn't matter if they're perfect. They don't have to be perfect because they're monsters! That moment freed me from the fear I was fighting with, and I was able to dive in and get back to work on them. The more I worked, the happier I got, until finally I was giggling as I painted on the goofy details, the pink hair bow, or the goofy teeth on the orange guy with eye stalks. They're not perfect, but they're cute, and that's enough for me. Anyone who wants perfect monsters can paint their own!

By the way, I think you should enlarge the image above, even if you don't click any other images on this blog. It's silly, and you can see all the little guys in their full glory. They're pretty nutty, really, and I love them all! I may have to make my own set of these, especially if someone buys them.

Wait, buy them? That's right, this set of nails is also up on Etsy for $24.95. They'll come nicely and safely packaged so that you don't have to worry about them being squished by the post office, and then you'll get to love the little guys while I miss them.  These guys found their new home ages ago.

It's ok. I can make more. Already, my mind is filled with googly-eyed critters, and I'm wondering what to make next...

So, what do you think? Any other critters you'd like to see?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Flashback: More splatters, on black!

Ugh. Still dealing with computer issues. I'm typing this from my husband's computer. *sighs* It will get fixed, I promise... but til then, look at this gorgeous set of nails I did way back in July of 2010!


You know, I admit it. I am totally a child of the 80s. I love neon, I love wild prints, and I love paint splats. This set of nails reminds me of a sweatshirt I had in grade school, only the shirt was white instead of black. But what better color than black to make colors pop?

You can see how vivid the colors are. I can't lie, I want to keep these all for myself! So much fun, but at least I can redo them if I decide to!

This set of nails is made with a custom-mixed rainbow of acrylic paints, so that they have the same level of intensity. I love the black base, and the topcoat makes the colors so intense and glassy!

I won't lie, I can see doing this design with shimmers, metallics, glitters... monochromatic colors, analogous colors... I think it'd be fun no matter HOW I mixed it up! It's just downright FUN! Oooh, imagine white splats on a black background, with the occasional splat of red! There are so many ways to do this, and I don't know if any are better than the others. You'll definitely see this pattern again, if only on Etsy! Speaking of Etsy, these will be going up as soon as I finish this post.

I'm so excited to add that I've got some surprises coming up soon! I'm planning some videos, both of some of those dramatic, color-shifting polishes in the sun as well as some technique videos. If you have anything you'd like to see, feel free to leave requests in the comments!

And oy, I've just looked at the clock to see that once again, I'm catching 7:30am from the wrong side. I think I need to go to sleep. Man... one of these days I'll get my internal clock set right again.

...maybe. :D

I really am going to get things fixed around here, I promise!
See my disclosure statement for more information.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

It's a work in progress...

I know, it's been entirely too long without new content. I'd love to blame it on something interesting (like all the craziness that's been going on at my house...) but one of the main reasons is because I'm sort of obsessing over a new technique.

I'd read about it online, and wasn't quite sure how it would work. So, for the past week I've been experimenting lots, trying to figure out why it works, how it works, and how I can present it so that other people can get some useful tips to make it work for them. Unfortunately, I've only got it working maybe 3 out of 5 times, so that's not enough for me to write a tutorial on it.

However, that doesn't mean I can't show a quick teaser, to give you an idea of what I'm doing. It's interesting, and gives you a glimpse of what my nails look like when I'm in the middle of developing a process. So, without too much more blabbing, here are the pics. I'm getting closer to making it work!

Sometimes blogging is hard!
See my disclosure statement for more information.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Blast from the past: The one where I got glitter up my nose.

Still fussing with computer problems here, so I'll share another old post that makes me smile. The nail art in this one is a bit of a fail, but the story I share is...

... well, I'll let you decide.


I'm taking a break from the batch of nail tips I decorated, but don't worry. You're still getting the holiday nail art, but today it's more of a cautionary tale, although I'm not quite sure what I'm cautioning you against. I think it's a simple Don't do this, because it isn't pretty!

But first, let me show you yesterday's adventures! I finally sold the monster nails, so I treated myself to a sample pack of glitter! Unfortunately, it came packaged in cute little baggies, which doesn't work for me. I debated for quite a while in Michaels, trying to figure how I was going to store this stuff so that I could use it!

Then it hit me. I saw a set of paint pots for $2.75 hanging in the section with palettes and containers and things for painting. Have I mentioned I'm frugal? Yea, I don't want to spend $10 on something to store my $4 glitter, so this was just right for me! The only issue would be transferring the glitter from the packets to the pots, but I could be careful, right?

Right. The thing I forgot to take into consideration was that this is microglitter. It's so incredibly fine that it can waft into the air like a dust cloud, gently drifting and lazily gliding on air currents in the room. How do I know this, you ask yourself? Lemme tell you...

Because I'm so frugal, I wanted to get every last speck of the glitter out of the packages. I spent good money on that stuff, and I don't want to waste it! I cut the edge of the first bag off (emerald green, ine you were wondering, and haven't seen me since the incident!), gently tap-tap-tapped it into the pot, being careful not to spill any. Then, I lifted the bag up with the cut end pointing up, intending to tap it on my finger to pull down the glitter stuck to the edges of the bag. It worked perfectly while the bag was closed!

Unfortunately, I didn't think this through carefully enough. When I tapped the bag on my finger, instead of this causing gravity and inertia to pull the glitter on the edges of the bag down to the bottom it turned the bag into a very small bellows, sending a tiny mushroom cloud of green glitter directly into my face.  It felt like it was in slow motion, this tiny cloud expanding toward my face, enveloping my head in its sparkly green goodness. Except it wasn't quite goodness that enveloped my head. It was glitter, and glitter never goes away.

I won't waste your time with the tales of how I finally got all the bits of glitter picked up and shaken out of my hair. Let's just say it included lots of masking tape, lots of cursing, and lots of my family pointing and laughing at me. I deserved it, clearly, but really... how was I supposed to know this was going to happen?

I finally got the glitter packed away and most of the random glitter fallout picked up. What am I saying... I know I'm going to be finding glitter in random places for the next 15 years. Glitter is like herpes- once you get it on you, it never goes away.

And on to the nail art, since I've shared my secret shame. Unfortunately, this isn't much less embarrassing. I had visions of a cute, sassy Konad look that would be fun to wear. What I ended up with was more like the 80s threw up all over my nails. It's not horrible, granted, and it's better than I could do when I first got the Konad stuff. But still?

This isn't good. Not by a long shot. And the more I did to it, the worse it got.

It all started with the package I won from Scandalously Polished over twitter. I had no idea what to expect, so I was absolutely BLOWN AWAY when I saw it was 10 polishes and 4 nail foils! CRAZY! She is super awesome, and if you haven't seen her blog, then scoot over right after you read this and say hi!

In that package was a polish from H&M called Bella's Choice. I'm going to assume this has something to do with that vampire thing going around... Dusk or Nightfall or Twilight or something, yea? Whatever... it's an absolutely gorgeous turquoise creme that I couldn't wait to put on. I was hoping it would look wonderful on me!

In truth, not so much. It made me look somewhat ill. My husband looked at it and called it "that puke polish you're wearing." I wore it grocery shopping and the cashier caught sight of my nails, did a double take, then quickly looked away with a strange look on her face. I think she didn't want to ask if I was feeling ok, but you could tell she didn't think it looked good. I like the color, though, so I figured maybe if I stamped over it, I'd be able to wear it.

Enter the second color she sent- H&M Goddess on Stage. This polish is magnificent, y'all. I really don't even have the words to describe how amazing this is. Creamy, gorgeous, just luscious. I thought it would play nicely with Bella's Choice and make something wearable for me. But it actually stamped sort of sheerly, and in my stamping ineptitude I ended up missing spots and stuff.

No big deal, I thought to myself, I can just fix those spots with a brush. Sure, except that I couldn't copy the consistent thinness of the stamped image, leaving me with heavy purple spots on the edges of the print. Oh yea, that looks GREAT.

Maybe I can add some color to the spots, to draw the eye away from the dark edges, I continued thinking to myself. I pulled out my pink and white creme polishes and added some to the dots, but that wasn't enough, in my opinion. My husband did think it made everything look better, even better than the stamp alone. "It covers the puke nicely!"

Thanks hon. I feel much better now.

As a finishing touch, I added lime green and yellow creme dots to the remaining spots and covered it all in Seche Vite. And you know what?

It wasn't horrible, but I don't think I'll be wearing this one again. There are just too many things here that just didn't work well together, and I'm just... no. No. Never again!

Do you have any horrible stories about manicures that just didn't work as well as you hoped? I'd love to hear them to make me feel better about this one!

I'm STILL finding green glitter places...
See my disclosure statement for more information.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Blast from the past: my fake-nail-painting setup!

Here's another flashback for ya... years ago I was asked about the setup I used to create the sets of artificial nails I would make. I wrote this post in 2010 to demonstrate it. Oddly enough, it hasn't changed much since then!


First off, let me say hello to all the new people following and visiting the blog. It makes me so happy to see new followers! I feel like I'm not talking to myself here, which is always a good thing!

So, I was talking to KellieGonzo about my setup for painting nail tips over Twitter. (I'm not all that interesting, but yes, you too can follow me- I'm MsLaynie on there.) I realized earlier tonight that my setup may be slightly different than most people. She wanted pictures, and that started me thinking it might be good to share with you folks.

See, I've got fibromyalgia, so I end up having to change positions a lot. Really a lot. Like, sitting in a chair makes me feel really icky, so I tend to work in places where I can sprawl and shift- the floor, my bed, etc. But this means I have to come up with creative ways to do things. I'm good at that, though!

So, without further ado, let me share with you my uber-high-tech, super expensive nail painting setup. Take a deep breath, guys, it's pretty spectacular.

1. Box o' paints & polishes
2. Notebook/sketchbook
3. Cotton rounds
4. Paint
5. Scissors
6. Mixing/measuring device
7. Suspension device
8. Rinse water for brush
9. Brush pad
10. Paint conservation system
11. Brush
12. A single cotton round
13. Masking tape
14. Drying/manipulation sticks

1. My box of paints and nail polishes. (I have a couple of other boxes filled with various bits, but they're smaller. They're also not in this pic.) I use everything from artists' acrylics to the 97 cent Folk Art bottles you can get at the big box stores. Most of them (especially the polishes) I've had for absolute ages, picked up a piece at a time, because I am both cheap and poor.

2. My notebook/sketchbook/life on paper. I keep it nearby me at all times, no matter where I am. Usually it's either in my purse or on my lap. You can see some sketches on it if you squint. It basically contains the part of my life that isn't in my planner. I end up filling about a notebook every couple of months with everything from to-do lists to sketches and dreams. Occasionally I photograph the sketches. If you're interested, I might share!

3. My cotton rounds. I love these so much more than cotton balls, and I'm not even sure why. I use them for a billion little things, from cleaning my face to taking off my nail polish to ... well, various craft projects. Don't ask, it's safer that way.

4. This is one of the acrylic paints I work with. I absolutely love to mix my own colors, and since acrylics dry slower than nail polishes, I like using them for nails. Plus, I can easily do all sorts of funky things, like gradients and funky rainbows. Plus they're inexpensive!

5. Scissors. I do very esoteric things with them, like cut things. It's all very technical.

6. Ahhh, my trusty mixing/measuring device. Mere mortals call it a plastic spoon, but it's really versatile. Both ends can be used for scooping, measuring, burnishing... many things in life can be made more pleasant with a plastic spoon. Plus, those of us with chronic illnesses can appreciate always having an extra spoon around...

7. I love this one. I believe in recycling, so when I realized I needed something to hold my nails with while they dried, I grabbed a piece of Styrofoam. (I have a stash of things like Styrofoam, flattened boxes, and packing peanuts in my closet. Packrat? No, not me!)

It was much too large to use as it was, so I broke it into several smaller pieces, just perfect for holding a batch or nails or two. Unfortunately, the pieces were now too small and lightweight to actually hold the skewers (14) and keep them from tipping over. So, I reached for my masking tape and taped one down to a plastic tray I had on hand. Et voila, we have a stable (if ugly) contraption.

8. Another recycling effort. Clearly, anyone painting with acrylic paints needs a container of water to rinse their brushes in. Usually I'd use a plastic tub from something like butter or yogurt for my water. But since I work in such an unorthodox fashion, I need something that won't spill.

That's when I decided to pull out a large prescription bottle from my stash of odd recyclables. Again with the chronic illness, I have a LOT of these. I use them for lots of things, from organizing different types of hairpins (I have hair to my hips, I need pins to wrangle it with!) to beads and buttons. I figured it was worth a try...

Sure enough, they're waterproof! So, I fill one 2/3 full of water, and it's a nice, safe container I can keep closed while I don't need it, and can open easily when I do. It works out like a dream for me, even if it is a bit... odd.

9. My brush pad. I know, I know, it looks like a panty liner. But don't be so quick to judge, it could be lots of things... it could be... umm...

Ok. It's a panty liner. But hear me out on this! Again, if you're painting, you need something to dry your brushes on, something to dab your brush on to take off a bit of paint, etc. I get so tired of using a paper towel or a rag, because I always end up getting water and paint on my hands, and it just bothers me. Plus, I set my rag down and then I've lost it, even though I haven't moved.

Then I started thinking. I need something absorbent... something I won't lose all the time. Something that won't stay wet and bother me... I remembered a pack of panty liners I had stashed in the bathroom cabinet. Why not, I thought. So I stuck one on my box of rhinestones and WOW, it works like a DREAM! Seriously, if you paint, you should try this. They're super absorbent, they stay in one place, and they dry your brushes really nicely. It's even good for wiping off your nail polish brushes, if you're mixing glitter into clear polish or something (see the flakies). I'm really happy with this, even though it is kind of embarrassing.

10. My paint conservation system. Have I mentioned I'm cheap? Because I am. I hate wasting paint, even though I know that paint layers work better when those layers have time to dry. But if the layers have time to dry, so does the paint, especially the blob of paint I've mixed up specifically for this set of nails.

I started using the disposable paper cups when I was doing a set of glitter nails. The glitter went EVERYWHERE, and made a huge mess. Then I realized I could put it into a paper cup and then toss it once I was done. I've been using the cups since then. (All two days, WOO!)

So, I'm using my glitter paint again tonight, except that this time, it's mixed with acrylic medium. And uhoh, there's that drying issue I mentioned. Then it hit me- maybe if I stuffed the dosing cup from a bottle of cough syrup into the top of the paper cup, it would keep the paint from drying out. It took a bit of fiddling to get the dosing cup in, since the top of the paper cup was just a smidgen smaller than the dosing cup.

But would you believe it worked? The odd little contraption kept my paint nice and moist for a good three hours, plenty of time for me to finish the nails and make me VERY happy! So hey, it might be weird, but it works!

11. One of my brushes. Note the price tag still on the brush. I've only had this one for about 6 years. I think I paid about $3 for it. It was a splurge, what can I say?

I've got about 15 brushes ranging in age from a year and a half or so to maybe 13 years old. I've also got some paints (and nail polishes, would you believe!) that date back to when I was an art major in college. Wow, that's a long time.

12. A single cotton round. I don't know why it was there.

13. Masking tape. I use this for everything from taping down Styrofoam to picking up stray glitter to cleaning off my plastic palette when the paint remnants get too thick. It's pretty cool stuff!

14. Finally, we get to the end. I've tried several ways of holding the nail tips to paint them. Double stick tape sort of works, but I end up missing the sides. Don't even THINK about holding them in your fingers! After much head-scratching, I decided to try this, and for now it works better than anything else I can come up with. If I can figure out something better, I'm all for it.

For some reason, I keep a vase of bamboo skewers on my bedside table. I use them for all sorts of crafty things, and this is the latest. I take a tiny blob of poster putty, smoosh (technical term) it into a little tube shape, and stick the nail onto the skewer with it. I do 3-4 nails per skewer, and I'm OCD enough to put them in size order from smallest to largest. Then I can hold the skewer and paint the nail however I like.

Once they're dry, I stick them into the Styrofoam and let them dry. No issues with holding your hands super still to keep your manicure neat. I tell you, nails are SO much easier to paint when they aren't attached to fingers!

And if you're still reading this (wow, thank you!!) then I have a sneak preview for you... These are the nails coming up. Deep turquoise glitter, hopefully with a glassy shine that makes me think of deep water. I did a test nail with this combination and fell in love!!

So, basically, I'm using quite a mix of recycled and just-plain-weird items. What about you? What's your setup like for when you do your nails, or if you paint other things? I'd love to hear how other people manage their setup!
Never let it be said that I'm not creative...
See my disclosure statement for more information.

Friday, April 20, 2012

There will be a brief break in normal posting...

Ugh. I'm having computer problems, so until I can resolve things new content may be a bit spotty. That's not a bad thing, though... I figure this is a great time to look back at some of my favorite posts from the past. Since I have so many new readers, maybe this will expose them to some fun posts they hadn't seen yet!

Bear with me guys, this should be resolved soon. Until then, let's take the time machine back to July of 2010! *makes wibbly wobbly timey wimey hands*


A while back, I was admiring the splat Konad plate (M21). It's extremely cute, and I was sad because I wanted to do something similar on my nails, but I don't have any Konad supplies. Then I saw someone on YouTube (I think?) paint their nails using a brush to get the splattered paint effect. So, I decided to give it a shot on my own.

First off, I started with two coats of Gosh Holographic. I absolutely adore this polish... I love it so much! I need to take some video of it outside, so that you can see the amazing holographic qualities it has. But for now, trust me... It's INSANE!

Unfortunately, using the holographic base for this design wasn't the best use for it. The splats covered up so much of it that the holographic beauty was lost, to a degree. It's a shame, really, because I really, REALLY liked the idea of having that rainbow goodness under the splats. But it's ok, I guess. I've learned that holos aren't necessarily that great under busy manicures. That's a good lesson to learn, so I won't be wasting any more of my precious Gosh Holographic under it!

After that, I started to add splotches with a tiny paintbrush. I used three coordinating shades (two pinks and a red), but I think next time I'll go for more variety in the colors. I used Love My Nails in Delicious (a moderately deep, somewhat dusty pink), Heaven Nail Lacquer in Ruby (an amazing red jelly with intense glitter), and Nail Fantasies in Peppermint Patty (a super hot pink). I basically did one or two splats per nail, alternating the colors somewhat randomly. I also tried to make some somewhat rounded blobs on some of the ends, just for fun.

Overall, I'm really happy with how this came out. I think more variety in the colors would be fun, of course, but overall this was LOTS of fun. I think I'd use a dotter for some of the ends of the splats, to make them rounder. Speaking of, I'll have to make a post about my oh-so-high-end dotting tools. I spent an afternoon with glue, tape, old dried-up pens and various items to make my own! They're even comfortable to use, until I can get some real ones. :D

So, what do you think?
Wheee, it's like a T.A.R.D.I.S. for my blog!
See my disclosure statement for more information.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Another quick tip- how to remove stubborn polishes

Whew- this video took AGES to edit! I shot this over the weekend and have been editing it ever since. But finally I got it all neat and watchable, and it's under three minutes!

I wanted to share how I remove stubborn polishes, like glitter-heavy polishes, or nail decals or stones. I used to dread using those because removal left my nail beds sore and irritated. Once I found this method, it's been smooth sailing! Now it's time for me to pass this on to you, and I hope it works as well for you.

Leave me a comment if you found this helpful. Also, if you enjoy the videos, why not subscribe on youtube? A thumbs up never hurts, either... :D

Patience, young padawan...
See my disclosure statement for more information.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Princess P-Nut's Zebra Nails

Ahh, weekends! We went to our friend's house again yesterday and this time I brought my nail polishes with me! I'd planned to do nails for more than just her daughter, but the fibro monster reared its head and said, "Nope, you're done!" At least I was able to get hers done!

We decided to call her Princess P'nut, courtesy of her mom. They'd seen my video on making sponged ombre nails and P'nut was really wanting rainbow nails. She also loved the zebra, so together we picked out the colors for her gradient. She chose different colors than I'd used, and I think they worked well together!

She also chose to put rainbow sparkles over the rainbow gradient but under the zebra stripes, unlike the way I'd done mine. I used Jessica Silver Holographic topcoat for the sparkles this time. I love that polish!

Since I'd left my acrylic paints at home, I used Princess P'Nut's acrylic craft paints to do the zebra stripes. As you can see, they came out just as well as with my artist's grade acrylic. Proof that you don't need to spend a ton on acrylic paints!

However, it's obvious that even though I brought my cleanup brush, I'm just not as good at cleanup on other people as I am on myself. I clearly missed lots of stuff, but my that point I was pretty tired and shaky. Ah well, it'll come off in the bath!

Princess P'nut absolutely loved her nails, and kept looking at them off and on. I was so happy! I love sharing the fun of nail art, and she definitely enjoyed it!

The rest of the day was lots of fun too! P'nut's mom made burrito fixings, and those were absolutely delicious! Then she'd made a blackberry cobbler, and we brought chocolate chip cookies. Way too much deliciousness... but who's complaining?

I can't talk about visiting without mention the snugglebunny animals. When I first sat down, Rico ran over and hopped into my lap! He let me scritch him for 10 minutes or so, then was finished. Cats are so mercurial!

Later in the day, we all went to sit in the grass and watch the chickens play in the leaves... such cuties! My husband snapped this gorgeous shot of Rico blatantly ignoring the chickens. He's so beautiful!

There's just something about orange cats that I love. I've yet to meet an orange tabby that wasn't a sweetiepie!

Finally, I have to share this picture of Boo the dachshund. Poor baby had been lying on the back sofa cushions and ended up slipping down behind them. He tried and tried to get out, but his little legs were just too short! Meanie that I am, I just had to get a picture of him looking so dejected.

We helped him up not long after this photo was taken. Surprisingly enough, he ended up sitting on my lap for a good two hours! Normally if his favorite person is home, he's sitting with her. But even though she was home, he'd decided he was snuggling me instead!

At one point, he'd been lying with his front half draped across my lap. He stretched and rolled over onto his back, with his little front legs sort of poking into the air, and he leaned his head back and started making the cutest little wheezy whimpers of contentment! I was absolutely squeeful!

So yea... yesterday was filled with lots of laughter, good food and good friends. You can't ask for more than that!

There's a reason I'm not a nail tech.
See my disclosure statement for more information.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

How to clean up your manicure to make it look fantastic

Hiya! Today I've got a tutorial that I've had lots of questions about- how I make my nails look like they're "perfectly polished." Friends have told me that I must have incredibly steady hands to polish  my nails so neatly, and yet nothing could be farther from the truth!

Instead, I've got a pretty noticeable tremor. My hands shake most of the time, and there's not really anything I can do about it. This means when I paint my nails, I get polish on the skin surrounding my nails as well. This makes it look like my nails were painted by a distracted toddler!

Thankfully, I learned how to fix it from several blogs, and I'm going to share the technique with you. It's fast and easy, and gives me that fresh-from-the-salon look. Have a look:

See? You can do this too, and with a bit of practice it won't take you long at all! Here are the details you'll need:

Acetone or nail polish remover
A paintbrush of your choice

I use a brush that came with a cream eyeliner from Black Radiance. It's almost the same brush that came with my Wet n Wild cream eyeliner, which isn't surprising the same parent company owns both Black Radiance and Wet n Wild! My brush looks weird because I taped it to a length of wooden dowel to make it longer.

I like this brush because it's nice and firm, and the angled tip lets me get into spaces I can't quite reach with a square brush. Still, brush preference is a very personal thing, and you might not like this brush. Try out several to see what you prefer!

You don't need a special nail art brush for this, either. You can use any brush you like. I've gotten brushes from art supplies and from WalMart, and they all work equally well for this.

Unfortunately, brushes don't last forever. As you can see, the fibers of the older (silver) Wet n Wild brush are kind of splayed out and going every-which-way. This doesn't work well when I'm trying to clean up my nails. The newer Black Radiance (gold) brush is also thinner, but that hasn't made much difference in my cleanup.

Unfortunately, the fibers in the newer brush are starting to get a bit wonky as well. I think it's time for a new one. Still, I think the eyeliner cost a whopping $3, so I'm not breaking the bank whenever I need a new one!

I hope this helps you, and that you can get neat nails too! Leave me a comment if you find this helpful.

Have a great day!

Polishes were provided by the brand for consideration.
See my disclosure statement for more information.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

It's a gradient day at the Zoya beach!

I'm sorry, that title is just puntastic. Anyway, I've been wearing this for a few days and I really like it! Not a whole lot of art to it, but it's sparklelicious and you should know by now how much I like the sparkles!

I started with my base coat, then did one coat of Zoya Arizona from their Beach and Surf collection. I knew I was going to be doing a gradient, so I did a base coat of my lighter color. Then I sponged on a gradient of Arizona and Reagan (also from the Beach and Surf collection).

Arizona and Reagan are both rich, intensely-saturated creme polishes. Arizona is a gorgeous, sunny orange that makes me smile, and Reagan is a deep magenta. The two blended together smoothly, creating a gorgeous transition.

I did make one booboo though... while sponging, I accidentally turned the sponge upside down when I reached my middle finger. I was annoyed, but quickly decided to call it an accent nail. :D

Once my gradient was finished, I thought they needed something else. I decided to go with glitter, adding Love My Nails Angel Baby. It's a fun mix of tiny glitter and larger iridescent rounds. Gorgeous! Also, I added a coat of my super-glitter polish for more blingy goodness to turn this into a rainbow sparkly monster!

... nooo, what do you mean I seem like I need a nap? I feel fine!!! Super! WONDERFUL!!

... Ummm, ok. Maybe I am a touch giddy. Maybe I should go back to the video I'm editing for you. I was hoping to have it up today, but that just didn't happen. I'm not that good yet. But soon.

Ok, you look at the rest of these photos while I go have a bit of a rest work on video. More tomorrow, hopefully.

Polishes were provided by the brand for consideration.
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