Wednesday, September 30, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 30: Inspired by a tutorial

Truth be told, I absolutely did not want to take off yesterday's nails. Especially because I knew I was exchanging them for something I definitely wasn't gonna like.
Here's the deal: I don't watch/read nail art tutorials. Simply because I don't need instructions to achieve a specific look. I can tell just by looking at a design how it's done and what I need to pay attention to. So this prompt SUCKED for me. I chose to go with a splatter design, simply because I've never done splatters and actually posted them anywhere. It's not a new technique for me at all.

Also, I didn't love this mani. I actually hated it. I don't like the way it looks in person. In the pictures I took however, they weren't quite that bad. My camera picked up the colors more saturated than they actually are and apparently, that made me approve of them.

Colors used:
essence - born to be wild (dark shimmery green/teal)
essie - aruba blue (royal blue)

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 29: Inspired by the Supernatural

Boy. This was such a fun one to paint! Sure, it took me forever and a day, but I absolutely love the final result! So, if you couldn't guess just by looking at it, this mani was inspired by a phoenix. I picked this picture as inspiration and tried to re-create it as accurately as possible. I chose to go with a simple black base, because the phoenix itself already took me way too long anyway.

This might be one of the most intricate manis I've ever done! Check below for some bonus work-in-progress shots!

Colors used:
black, white
China Glaze - Happy Go Lucky (yellow)
flormar - 421 (orange) [destashed]
ArtDeco - 80 (darker orange) [destashed]
essie - forever yummy (light red)

Make sure to click on the pictures to magnify them! 

Monday, September 28, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 28: Inspired by a flag

I'll admit I took the easy way out with this one. This was based off the flag of Wales. The original flag has a red dragon-like creature on it too, but after all, the prompt was 'inspired by a flag', not 'recreate a flag'... So yeah. We're in the last couple days of the challenge and it's starting to wear me out a little. I still enjoy doing it, but everyday has taken a toll on my creativity and the health of my nails.

Colors used:
Catrice - Miss Piggy's BF (green) [destashed]
matte topcoat

Sunday, September 27, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 27: Inspired by artwork

I had a lot of fun with today's mani! The piece of art that inspired me was Claude Monet's Twilight, Venice which is also called San Giorgio Maggiore At Dusk.
I was originally going to do the Mona Lisa, but let's be honest, that's impossible.

Here are the colors I used:
Bonus picture - part of the mess I left
behind after I finished this mani
Sally Hansen - Lemon Heaven (pastel yellow/cream) [destashed]
essie - forever yummy (medium red)
Artdeco - 80 (dark-medium orange) [destashed]
essie - vibrant vibes (light green, pastel)
OPI - Bastille My Heart (darker red)
China Glaze - Happy Go Lucky (yellow)
Formula X - Dynamite (darker yellow)
essie - make some noise (medium electric blue)
China Glaze - Bahamian Escape (light blue)

Saturday, September 26, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 26: Inspired by a pattern

So, I'm pretty sure I've officially lost my motivation for this challenge. Luckily, there's only 5 days left. I don't hate this design, but I've been feeling very uninspired for the last couple days.

Anyway, this mani is inspired by the herringbone pattern, just in case you couldn't tell. As always, I don't do well with freehanding lines, but I like to challenge myself so I've been doing it quite a lot nonetheless. There's actually a small black fiber stuck to my pinky, which you might see if you magnify the picture.

Colors used:
essie - spin the bottle (nude)
essence - wonderfuel (purple with light blue/cyan shimmer)

Friday, September 25, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 25: Inspired by fashion

I am officially calling these 'snowed in rainbow pinwheels'. I swear, the gradient/faded edges look just like a dusting of snow (or powdered sugar) to me. It wasn't intentional though.
The lines on these aren't the cleanest, but considering the short time I actually spent on them, they're not too bad.

Here's the t-shirt I based this mani on: 

Colors used:
black, white
OPI - Bastille My Heart (dark red)
Formula X - Dynamite (dark yellow)
wibo - Nr. 2 (rosé) [destashed]
Maybelline - Lavender Lies (muted light purple)
Manhattan - 10B (dark blue) [destashed]
flormar - 421 (orange) [destashed]
OPI - Jade Is The New Black (medium green)
butter LONDON - Slapper (teal)

Thursday, September 24, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 24: Inspired by a book

So today, I have my first fail of the challenge. Don't get me wrong, I don't dislike the design. It's wearable and I didn't have to deal with any major crises. However, this wasn't my most inspired mani. It feels like I kind of rushed through it and kept it very very simple.

Anyway, today's design was inspired by The Cat In The Hat by Dr. Seuss. To be fair, I haven't read this book at all, so I based this design off the book cover. My index and middle finger represent the pattern on the cat's hat and my ring finger and pinky loosely represent the color scheme - red, blue and white.

Colors used:
black, white
essie - forever yummy (red)
b pretty - sky (blue/teal) [destashed]

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 23: Inspired by a movie

Today's manicure is inspired by the movie Finding Nemo. This was the first movie I ever saw in the cinema, back when I was 7. I will try to take you through every nail, explaining what I wanted to depict and which colors I used. Make sure to click on the pictures to magify them!

Let's start with the pinky! This is a purple to yellow gradient with yellow polka dots on the bottom three fourths of my nail. This was inspired by the character Gurgle, who is a purple royal gamma fish. I didn't really have a blue-based purple in my stash that was bright enough to resemble his actual colors, so I used essence's amazed by you [destashed] instead. It's more pink/red-based, but it worked well. The yellow I used is Formula X - Dynamite.

The design on my ring finger was inspired by the character Gill. He is a white moorish idol and I tried representing his appearance by starting with a sideway gradient from yellow to white. The yellow is the same as above, the white is essie - blanc.
I then painted on some dark purple on either side of the gradient. The purple I used is OPI's Russian Navy. The last step was to paint on his scars with the white polish.

The middle finger represents Dory. I started with two coats of Manhattan's 10B [destashed]. I then painted on the black markings with essie - licorice and finished the design by adding her back fin with China Glaze's Happy Go Lucky. This is a lighter and cooler yellow than Dynamite.
I ended up shading/highlighting the lines where the blue and the black meet with essence's blurry up!, which is a white jelly polish.

The index finger was obviously inspired by the title character. I started off with two coats of Artdeco's 80 [destashed] then added the detail with black and white polish. Unfortunately, my bottle of essie's blanc has gotten a bit goopy, so this finger and my thumb ended up a little thick in places.

The design on my thumb was inspired by the character Deb. Deb is a blue and white striped damselfish. I started this just like my middle finger, then added in the white "stripes" and lined them with essie's shelter island. This finger also had the issue of being a little thick in places.

This isn't really something I would actually wear outside the challenge, but it was a lot of fun to create for sure!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 22: Inspired by a song

Today's prompt is 'Inspired by a song' and the song I chose is Anthem by Leonard Cohen. Actually, this mani is inspired by a line in the song, not the whole piece.
The line that inspired this mani goes as follows:
There is a crack, a crack in everything; that's how the light gets in.
And so obviously, I had to turn this into a glow-in-the-dark mani. I managed to get a much stronger glow this time, mostly because I used a different polish.

The white base might've contributed too. I 'charged' the polish with flash before taking this picture.

Colors used:
China Glaze - Concrete Catwalk (dark charcoal)
glow in the dark top coat

Monday, September 21, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 21: Inspired by a color

We've reached the 'inspired by...' prompts, which means we're two thirds through with the challenge! These last couple prompts tend to be the ones I dread, because I don't watch enough movies or read enough books to actually do manicures based on one of them. Nevertheless, it needs to be done, so I will try and find a way to make it work.

Today's prompt is 'Inspired by a color' and I chose London Town by Sundown by Catrice.
It's a beautiful shimmery dark red and I used it as part of the gradient. It ended up showing through on my index finger only though.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 20: Water Marble

Yay, watermarbling! Yes, I had a really hard time with watermarbling this time. Mostly because I hadn't done it in about a year, so I initially felt a little lost, but eventually I got there!

My first idea with these was nude-gold-black. It didn't work out because the one black polish I have right now dries super quickly, so the drop I put in after it didn't spread out at all. Then, I decided to just do nude and gold. I also had some spreading and drying issues with that, so this was my final attempt. Thankfully, it worked out well. Unfortunately, I got a few white spots on my final manicure, because I had tiny bubbles that popped when I applied my top coat, but they're not too disastrous.

All in all, I'm super happy with these. I love the effect they create and it's fairly easy to do (as soon as you know which polishes work well).

Colors used:
China Glaze - Rose Among Thorns (fuchsia/hot pink)
China Glaze - Concrete Catwalk (dark grey)

Saturday, September 19, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 19: Galaxy Nails

WARNING: Picture-heavy post!

I have done countless galaxy manicures in the past, so I decided to switch it up with these. First of all, I let my mom pick out the colors I was gonna use. She picked out a lot of seemingly random colors, but to my surprise, they all worked perfectly together. I ended up adding one color to make it a little more 'complete'. All in all, these were a lot of fun to make and to look at. And the best part? They glow in the dark!

I am also officially calling these rainbow galaxies, because that's how they ended up looking to me. I really truly love these and just a single picture does not do them justice. They're really sparkly!

Here, have some pictures.

Make sure to click through these pictures to magnify them!
The glow wasn't the strongest unfortunately, even after charging the polish with flash. It would have possibly worked better if I put the polish over an actual white base.

Colors used (in no particular order):
black, white
Manhattan - 10B (dark blue) [destashed]
flormar - U09 (sparkly medium purple)
essence - i don't need money, honey! (teal foil-effect polish) [destashed]
butter LONDON - Shag (shimmery medium brown)
MaXFactor - Deep Coral (dark orange/red)
flormar - S02 (shimmery green jelly)
OPI - Bling Dynasty (yellow gold)
OPI - Ski Slope Sweetie (white glass fleck polish with cream shimmer) [destashed]
essence - let stars rain down on me! (small holo glitter) [destashed]
claire's - White Out (white jelly, glows green in the dark) [destashed]

Friday, September 18, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 18: Half Moons

Boy, I do NOT like half moons. I don't even know what it is about them, they just tend to look really weird on me. Also, I've had 4 other ideas that absolutely did not want to work out. I do like the contrast between the metal polish and the muted blue.

I don't know if my half moons are the right size or shape, but at least I found a way to make it work out somehow.

Colors used:
essence - miss captain (muted blue-grey)
essence - city girls rule! (silver) [destashed]

Here are my failed attempts - enlarge at own risk.

Thursday, September 17, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 17: Glitter

Alright. First things first. I love glitter. A lot. What I don't like is removing it. That's why I chose to go with these two polishes for today's mani. They both have glitter in them, but they're not too gritty and are fairly easy to remove.

Another thing I would like to say is that this mani absolutely doesn't fit well for September/fall. This feels like a very cute Valentine's Day manicure. I guess I'm just 7 months behind.

With that being said, I do really like this manicure. Both these polishes are lovely and apply really well.

Colors used:
OPI - DS Reserve (burnt rosé)
OPI - DS Mystery (very dark purple)

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 16: Geometric

I loved today's prompt of the challenge! I also love how the finished mani looks! There's something about the way creme polishes and liquid metal polishes complement each other that really amazes me.

I didn't have any specific inspiration for this, but I have a feeling this will be one of my favorite manis of the challenge.

Colors used:
don't sweater it - essie (taupe)
Liquid Metal Gold - claire's [destashed]

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 15: Delicate Print

Alright. Delicate print. I was a little lost trying to figure out what to do here. I ended up doing lace, because I'm boring. Sorry.

Last time I did the challenge I meant to do a lace design, but it looked TERRIBLE. I'm not exaggerating, I promise. This one is so much better. It actually looks like lace. The one I did back in 2012 looked more like a mesh type pattern. And a very hideous one too.

In this mani, I combined a lace pattern with small polka dots on the rest of my nails. I really like this combo!

Colors used:
Catrice - Auber-Genious (muted dark purple)
claire's - Liquid Metal Silver (silver) [destashed]

Monday, September 14, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 14: Floral

Okay, so I might've pushed the boundaries a bit today. Floral usually means a pattern containing flowers, but I did something a little different today! I extended the nail art onto my fingers. I ended up leaving the stems and leaves a little less detailed as planned.

Colors used:
essie - spin the bottle (nude base)
essie - forever yummy (light red)
OPI - Bastille My Heart (darker red)
OPI - Every Month Is Oktoberfest (dark red/grape)
Misslyn - double chocolate (dark brown) [destashed]
essie - vibrant vibes (light/lime green)
Catrice - Miss Piggy's BF (medium green) [destashed]
OPI - Jade Is The New Black (darker green)
format - 455 (blackened dark green)

Sunday, September 13, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 13: Animal Print

Alright. I know that leopard print is overused in nail art. That's why I tried different animals and patterns, yet none of them worked out the way I wanted them to. So I ended up really frustrated and decided to just go with the leopard print. It's not intricate and it isn't challenging, but it worked.

I took this as an opportunity to use polishes I've never used before. Coincidentally, both of them are by essence. Also, I used up my black nail polish in this mani.

Colors used:
essence - miss captain (dusty grey-blue)
essence - amazed by you (violet) [destashed]

Saturday, September 12, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 12: Stripes

 I love stripes. Unfortunately, I suck at freehanding them. Regardless of that, I tried my best with today's mani.

I started off with a medium gray base, then sponged on black white and dark gray. I love the way the base turned out. It looks a little like spray paint. (Bonus picture at the bottom)

Then I started painting on the lines. I'm actually quite surprised how well I did with these. They're not perfect and they're also a little uneven, but I still really love the look of this mani.

Colors used:
street - LOOK (medium gray base) [destashed]
Concrete Catwalk - China Glaze (dark gray)
black, white

Friday, September 11, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 11: Polka Dots

Wee! Color prompts are officially completed and that means we are now tackling style-related manicures. In celebration of that, I filed down my nails a bit (they've been getting on my nerves).

I've been doing polka dots a lot lately, so I wanted to change it up a little bit on today's mani. I ended up using three different colors for the polka dots and it ended up looking very suitable for fall (which I love by the way).

Also, some of the dots are a little uneven and I apologize for that. I recently misplaced my dotting tools so I had to improvise a bit. I did end up buying new ones today, but the mani was already done at that point.

Colors used:
spin the bottle - essie (nude base)
Sunbaker - Butter London (orange) [destashed]
Bastille My Heart - OPI (red)
British Racing Green - Butter London (green)

Thursday, September 10, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 10: Gradient

Glitter gradients!

I've done gradients in the past. Some of them turned out great, some of them didn't. I don't know why, but gradients are still something I respect very much.

This one was a lot of fun to do! It isn't the cleanest, but probably the best I can do. I decided to add some gltter on top as well, simply because it looked a bit boring without it.

Colors used:
essie - vibrant vibes (lime green)
Catrice - (S)wimbledon (turquoise)
essie - all access pass (purple)
s-he - 107/001 (fine silver glitter)

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 9: Rainbow

Ah yes, the rainbow prompt. I spent a lot of time trying to figure out what I was gonna do for today. This is what I ended up with.

I'm not really sure what to call these or how to even describe them. Messy rainbow nails? Fake splatter rainbow? Something along those lines.

All I did to achieve this look was dab on nail polish with the original brushes and then add some smaller blotches with a dotting tool. Easy, right?

Colors used:
essie - forever yummy (red)
format - 421 (orange) [destashed]
China Glaze - Happy Go Lucky (yellow)
China Glaze - Entourage (green) [destashed]
essie - make some noise (blue)
essie - all access pass (purple)

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 8: Metallic

These nails though. I really loved making these!
I used two polishes from claire's Liquid Metal range that I bought earlier this year.

Don't get me wrong, I love liquid metal polishes. I love their look. But can we just agree they are really weird? Now, I don't know if this is the case with all liquid metal type polishes, but the way these apply seems a little odd to me. It's almost like it's a silver polish with pigment that sits on top and doesn't mix.

Anyway, I'm not complaining. I just find the way these apply and dry rather interesting.

Colors used:
claire's - Liquid Metal Teal (green) [destashed]
claire's - Liquid Metal Purple (purple) [destashed]

Monday, September 7, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 7: Black & White

Well, this was fun. I've always loved black & white patterns and nails, so I really enjoyed this prompt.
Also, I've said this a couple days ago but I absolutely suck at freehanding lines, so these were kind of difficult to paint. I got through it though, and they don't look too shabby.

It doesn't quite look like it, but the base is actually black. I'm not sure why, but in the pictures I took, the base looks navy rather than true black.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 6: Violet

I'll admit these aren't the most complicated nails I've ever done. But they still look fun! I've used the dry brush technique to achieve this look. Head on over to Chalkboard Nails to read more! (Yes, I realize I use her ideas A LOT, but that is because she is the queen of nail art in my opinion!)

I used almost all my purple polishes for this mani, so forgive me if I don't list all of them here!

Saturday, September 5, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 5: Blue

This was a fun one. The plaid is actually freehanded, which took way longer than I'll ever admit. On the other two nails, I did a side-swept look that was inspired by the queen Sarah from Chalkboard Nails. I ended up making vertical sweeps too.

Colors used:
China Glaze - Bahamian Escape (light blue)
essie - shelter island (slightly darker blue)
essie - make some noise (medium blue)

Note: make some noise actually stains a lot. I don't recommend this if you don't know how to get rid of stains on fingernails and cuticles (or just don't want that kind of mess).

Friday, September 4, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 4: Green

I suck at freehanding lines. Always have, always will. I tried my best with these.
This mani has been in my head for quite some time, but I never actually got 'round to doing it. Until now, of course. This was inspired by me changing my RAM earlier this year. I guess I have always loved circuit board patterns.

Colors used:
OPI - Jade Is The New Black (dark green)
China Glaze - Entourage (light green) [destashed]

Thursday, September 3, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge: Day 3: Yellow

Today's prompt of the challenge is yellow and while I normally don't like that color, I really like these nails. They're not super intricate, but they look really fun! The yellow I used is retina-tearing. Figuratively of course. I always feel like I have text markers as nails whenever I wear this color. It even glows a little in the evening dusk.

What I find great about this mani is the contrast of the neon yellow and the black. I did my best to keep the "lines" as clean and straight as possible, without using tape.

Colors used:
- essie - funky limelight (neon yellow) [destashed]
- black

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 2: Orange

So today's prompt is orange and let me just tell you: I'm not a fan of the first couple days of this challenge. I'm not exactly sure why, but I have a really hard time being creative during the first third.
With that being said, this mani isn't really my best piece of work and while I don't think it's horrible, there's something about it that bothers me.

Another thing I need to say about this is that these are in fact three different shades of orange. I couldn't quite capture the colors correctly for some reason.

Colors used:
MaXFactor - Deep Coral (dark orange)
flormar - 421 (orange) [destashed]
iQ - Nr. 2 (light orange) [destashed]

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Day 1: Red

Today's theme of the challenge is 'Red'.

I first did this design back in July and I thought this was the perfect way to get started with this challenge. This design was actually inspired by a skirt from The Sims 4, which is probably a weird place to get inspiration from.

Here are the colors I used:
- essie - forever yummy (light red)
- OPI - Bastille My Heart (dark red)
- OPI - Every Month Is Oktoberfest (red-bronze)
- black

31 Day Nail Art Challenge - Information post

It's September again!
And that means that, like every year, Sarah from Chalkboard Nails does the 31 Day Nail Art Challenge! In case you guys don't know what that means, I'll explain it to you.
The challenge consists of 31 days during which you have to do one nail art design per day. The themes for each day are as follows:

I actually did this challenge when I first started getting into nail art, but I was 15 then and didn't really know what I was doing. Let's hope I do now.

Like every year, anyone who's interested can join the challenge. If you do, remember to tag your pictures with the hashtag #31DC2015 !