June Nail Art Challenge #4: Purple!

Hello, dear readers! For this prompt, I decided to re-do a mani I did almost exactly two years ago. (Now I actually live where there are fireflies, how funny is that?)

6.14.16 Fancy Finger Guns bottles

I was reminded of this old manicure when I saw a lone little firefly floating around outside my window this weekend, and I thought it would be fun to re-create with the purple theme in mind. I used a gradient of Giver’s Theme, Funkey Dunkey, and just the littlest bit of Russian Navy (which I think technically is an indigo, but it always looks purple to me) for that just-before-nighttime sky coloring.

6.14.16 Fancy Finger Guns around bottle

When the gradient was dry, I used a nail art brush dipped in black polish (I used an old Sally Hansen) to make the tall grasses at the tip of my nails. I like this a lot better than what I did on my previous one – I used two different greens to make the grasses, but it kinda looked cartoon-y. I much prefer the black – it really looks like a silhouette of the grass as the sky darkens to night.

6.14.16 Fancy Finger Guns diagonal

The last time I did this mani, I didn’t like how I had too many of the larger orbs and it looked kind of cluttered, so I did only one or two at first on each nail, then added one or two here and there until I liked it. I’m really pleased with the end result (and that the yellow I used – China Glaze’s Happy Go Lucky – didn’t smear when I applied top coat like Zoya’s Pippa did on my previous mani).

6.14.16 Fancy Finger Guns curled

Oh, I almost forgot to talk about CMAFest! We ended up doing some of the free concerts during the day on Saturday (Jamie-Lynn Spears (!) who did a little medley of ’90s songs including obviously a little Britney, and my sister’s new fav singer on the scene, Russell Dickerson), but DUDE, it was so hot. Everyone was walking around sweaty as hell, but luckily they had a lot of water stations set up, plus those little paper fans everywhere, otherwise I would’ve died. My sister had a friend in town for CMAFest but she and her friends were leaving early, so they nicely gave two tickets to my sister and I, which meant we got to go to the closing show on Sunday.

I am not a country music person, but it was cool to be in the stadium (where the NFL team plays) with 50,000 people all stomping and singing along to each performer. We saw Little Big Town, Thomas Rhett, Keith Urban, and Luke Bryan, with hilarious introductions by the Property Bros – who apparently are now a band and performed earlier in the day?! Can’t believe I missed that one. Anyway, besides the humidity and the shitshow of getting a Lyft after the show (we left early but it still took almost 45 minutes because there’s never clear instructions for the drivers with all the crazy street closures and stuff around these kind of events, and our guy said they held the cars for almost 20 minutes before they let them all to the pick up area?), it was a really fun night!

Thanks for reading, everyone! See ya next time – A x

Advertisements

May Nail Art Challenge #7: Pastel

Hi everyone! I hope you’re having a lovely weekend. It’s absolutely gorgeous here today, the pool at my apartment complex was crazy busy ha. I originally wasn’t excited about this prompt – usually the only pastels I like are neon – but I actually love the way it came out, which is really nice after a few “meh” manis.

From left: China Glaze Pelican Gray, CG Sweet Hook, CG Diva Bride, OPI Gelato On My Mind, CG Re-fresh Mint

From left: China Glaze Pelican Gray, CG Sweet Hook, CG Diva Bride, OPI Gelato On My Mind, CG Re-fresh Mint

I was already wearing China Glaze’s Pelican Gray, so I decided to top that with some pastel colors and thought pastel mermaid scales might be pretty. I think the decals I used were from What’s Up Nails – they were pretty good! I still had to manually pop out some of the inside of the scales, but they stayed on the vinyl for the most part, and they gave me really nice, crisp lines except for one or two places where I didn’t press down hard enough.

My cuticles look fine in person, but they look really bad here, stupid camera magnification!

My cuticles look fine in person, but they look really bad here, stupid camera magnification!

Once my decals were in place, I wet a makeup sponge, wrung it out so it was only a little damp, then placed random dots of my four pastel colors and sponged it on. The pink and mint are some of the colors I won from China Glaze – I only kept them because I didn’t have a pale pink or mint and thought I should probably have them for nail art purposes, which is a good thing because I already used it for this mani! Despite being pastels, the colors only took two or three light sponging passes to be nice and opaque.

5.22.16 Fancy Finger Guns bottle

I love how this turned out! The only thing I wish I could’ve changed it noticing the decal on my pinkie wasn’t down all the way – you can see the middle scale is kind of messed up – but I think this is a really pretty, springy mani! I kind of want to do everything mermaid scales now that I know how good the decals are.

5.22.16 Fancy Finger Guns diagonal

Thanks for reading! See you soon with the second-to-last nail art challenge for May – A x

May Nail Art Challenge #3: Sunset!

Hello, friends! I hope your weekend is going wonderfully. Today was really warm but breezy and gorgeous so I’ve been outdoors almost all day, and I have a friend in town, so it’ll be fun to show her the honky tonks on Lower Broadway tonight! Before that, though, I wanted to get this post up!

From bottom: China Glaze Son Of A Peach, Neon & On & On, You Drive Me Coconuts, Morgan Taylor Anime-zing Color

From bottom: China Glaze Son Of A Peach, Neon & On & On, You Drive Me Coconuts, Morgan Taylor Anime-zing Color

I was a little lazy with this prompt – I was going to do something more interesting than “tropical sunset,” which basically everyone does, but…I wasn’t feeling doing anything too involved, and gradients are already a decent amount of cleanup, so here we are. I almost used all China Glaze polishes, but at the last minute I remembered the faboosh almost-neon purple of my Morgan Taylor Anime-Zing color, so I threw that guy into the mix!

5.7.16 Fancy Finger Guns around bottle

I did something I almost never do and did a white base before sponging on my gradients. I don’t generally like doing a white base – it’s too easy for the white to peek out along your cuticle, which bothers me to no end, so I usually just do a base coat of the lightest color – but I couldn’t tell which color would be lightest so I decided white would be easiest. I wish I had managed to blend the purple in a bit better, but I think this is a super fun combo, and it was BRIGHT. It’s difficult to capture neons on camera – and every time I managed to brighten the other neons to their full brightness, Son Of A Peach came out too yellow, which is why these photos are a bit dark – but if you’re looking for a fun not-highlighter-yellow neon, any of these will do (although be warned: they chip quickly, sometimes within 24 hours :/).

5.7.16 Fancy Finger Guns diagonal bottles

Doesn’t this make you want to have a fruity drink on the beach? Mm I might go make one right now! Thanks for reading! See you in a few days for my next challenge – A x

Holiday Nails #3: Dotted Cranberry Gradient

I wanted to do something a little holiday-esque but not overtly Christmas-y, so I decided to do something with red and gold – always very holiday!

OPI Color So Hot It Bers, China Glaze Velvet Bow, OPI Goldeneye

OPI Color So Hot It Bers, China Glaze Velvet Bow, OPI Goldeneye

I ended up doing a gradient to go under the gold dots. I used OPI’s Color So Hot It Berns (CSHIB) and China Glaze’s Velvet Bow and then – curveball! – ended up throwing on a matte top coat. I always want to do matte nails but forget, so I’m glad I finally remembered this time! I love how it looks with the matte gradient under the shiny metallic dots.

12.8.15 Fancy Finger Guns around bottle

For the dots, I put a little dollop of Goldeneye on a piece of paper and gently dipped my smallest dotting tool in it, added a dot to my nail, and repeated the process. I wanted to get the dots uniform, which is why I added more polish each time, but a few of them still kinda blobbed. It doesn’t look too bad, though.

12.8.15 Fancy Finger Guns up

I kinda wish I had done a slightly lighter red instead of Velvet Bow, but I don’t think I actually have one! I’m not really a red person, so I only have a few, and I basically only take them out at this time of year, ha. I do think the gold dots help elevate it to festive instead of dark/goth, though. What do you think? Let me know in the comments! Thanks for reading, I’ll see you next time – A x

Halloween Mani #11 – Water-Spotted Gradient!

Hi everyone! I’m chugging along with my Halloween manis, and this might be one of my favorites yet!

10.28.15 waterspot bottlesJPG

First, I put some of my latex stuff all around each nail for easy clean up, then I did the gradient – after two coats of Cotton Buds was dry, I did a gradient with CB and Arizona over top each of them, with Arizona at the top.

10.28.15 waterspot around bottle

I gave that about ten minutes to dry, then did the water spotting. So there are way better tutorials elsewhere, but the basic rundown is: I filled a Solo cup with lukewarm water, added one drop of Black On Black, and when it spread out I sprayed a little tester perfume spritzer in the middle so the polish got cool, weird spots and swirls, then lowered my nail into the polish and swirled away the excess with a Q-tip. After pulling my nail out of the water, I removed the latex (which meant I barely had to do any clean up – thank Yeezus someone thought that up!) and let it dry for a few minutes before adding a layer of top coat.

I was annoyed by how much the black almost completely covered my pointer finger, but now I kinda like how different each nail's coverage is.

I was annoyed by how much the black almost completely covered my pointer finger, but now I kinda like how different each nail’s coverage is.

This is a really fun look, but man, I need to find another way to do it – spraying that perfume makes the whole area smell SO strongly for a full day after, but I’ve tried it before using just alcohol and it didn’t do anything. Hmmmm must research.

Eeeeee only two manis left! They’re also a bit more work than my last few, so wish me luck! Thanks for reading, see you next time – A x