Saturday, June 21, 2014

Gradient Manicure

My husband and I are both on summer vacation right now, which you would think would mean we are doing tons of fun stuff but in reality, we are trying to save some money by staying at home and being bums.  It was awesome for the first two days and now I'm just kind of bored and don't know what to do with myself.  I'm really not used to having this much free time after this busy school year.

Fortunately, I already have a ton of nail polishes, stamping plates, and polish supplies (free entertainment!) so today I kept myself busy by doing a really fun gradient manicure.  It works out perfectly, since this evening we are actually going to get out of the house and go to dinner with some friends so now I'll have fancy nails for our leave the house day.  I actually really love painting my nails and the fun artistic outlet that goes with it, but during the school year I don't usually have time to paint them and if I do, it seems a bit pointless because teaching can be hard on polish.  Many hours spent typing, and picking up and pulling out and putting down textbooks, chapter books, and other random supplies leave my manicures chipped after one day.  But sitting at home perusing Pinterest all day is pretty gentle on the nails. ;)

You can see the shimmer if you enlarge this photo.
I decided to start back into the world of nail art by doing one of my favorite manicure techniques: gradient!  I love the fun and interesting effect this technique gives and it's pretty easy to do, although clean up can be a bit of a pain.  I decided to go with a fun summery look of bright pink and orange.

After applying a base coat, I used two thin coats of the pink shade seen here, which is Wet N Wild Fast Dry in How I Met Your Magenta.  It's a bright pink jelly with gold shimmer.  On it's own, I'm not too crazy about it.  The formula applies easily and it does dry quickly if you use thin coats but after three coats, you will still see visible nail line.  But it works great to do a gradient.  After it was dry, I used The Nailasaurus Gradient Tutorial method to gradually make my nails shift to orange at the tips.  The orange polish I used is Essie in Braziliant.  This is a pretty bright orange with pink shimmer and it's a lot more opaque than the pink shade, which is why I did it at the tips... because I hate visible nail line.

After I was happy with the sponging, I applied a topcoat.  Finally, to clean up the mess I made around my fingernails by using the sponge, I just dipped this brush in 100% pure acetone and it cuts through left over polish like a hot knife in butter.

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