Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Tutorial: Matte Black Kaleidoscope Nails

For my birthday party this past weekend, I wanted to do something a little fab and a little flashy with my nails, and I figured glitter was the way to go. I'm not normally a huge fan of shiny, sparkly things, so I wanted to keep the glitter to a minimum while still using just enough to keep my nails from looking boring and blah. Since I was celebrating at a shadow-cast screening of Rocky Horror, I decided to do a design inspired by Columbia, my favorite character from the film. The glitter polish I used was "Rainbow in the S-Kylie" from Nicole by OPI, and with all the different colors it reminded me of the sequined bustier top she wears for the majority of the movie.

This tutorial again uses the stiletto-shaped press-ons from Nails Gaga that I used in my last nail tutorial. To obtain this look, you'll either need to purchase a set (or a similar one), or shape your natural nails accordingly. I have written the tutorial assuming you'll be using press-ons like I did, so if you're going au naturale you can just skip the first few steps. 

Press-on Nails
Nail Polish: Black, Dense Multi-Color Glitter, Matte Top Coat
Scotch tape
Nail stickers (I used these ones)
5 pens, pencils or nail dotting tools
Nail glue (I recommend this one)
Nail file
Cuticle stick

1. Pick out the nails you need in the appropriate size for each finger (duh). 

2. Roll 10 small pieces of Scotch tape so that they are sticky on both sides and press one onto each end of a curved object, such as a nail dotting tool, pencil or pen. Stick one nail to each piece of Scotch tape, as shown, and press down firmly to make sure they stay in place. This will make painting the nails a lot easier and you won't have to sit around waiting for your nails to dry after each coat -- and there's a lot of coats involved in this tutorial!

3. Paint two coats of black onto each of the nails, allowing the first coat to dry before applying the second.

4. Apply matte top coat to all but the ring finger nails. Allow it to dry completely.

5. While waiting for the matte coat to dry, start loading up your ring fingers with the glitter polish. It took me about four coats to get mine nice and opaque, and I let each dry all the way through before adding another. You want the glitter to be so dense you can barely see the black through it. Depending on the brand you use, you may need to use more or less than I did.

6. Once your matte coat is fully dry, apply a rounded nail sticker just above the moons of each of the remaining nails, as shown.

7. Apply a thick goat of the glitter below the stickers, and immediately peel the stickers off. This will give you a clean, crisp line where the glitter is settled at the moons of your nails while leaving the rest nice and matte. (Sorry I didn't get a photo of this step!)

8. While your press-ons are drying, trim your natural nails and clean up your cuticles. 

9. Rough up your nails a little using the nail file. Be careful not to be too aggressive in filing, you just need a little bit of texture for the glue to adhere to. Trust me, it will make your nails stay a lot longer!

10. Apply a small amount of glue onto one of your pinkie nails. Apply the matching press-on and slide it down so it presses back against your cuticle at the base of your nail. Hold it down for a few seconds to make sure it sticks. Repeat on your other pinkie. 

11. Repeat step 10 until all of your nails are applied, working from your pinkies inward toward your thumbs. Congratulations, you're all done!

I apologize for the shit photo quality in most of this post. I did my nails the night before my birthday, and the lighting in my house is abysmal at night! 

I know it probably sounds like I'm totally shilling these stiletto press-ons by Nails Gaga at this point, but guys, they are seriously the best. I've now given myself three manicures using them, and each has lasted just under two weeks without a single nail breaking! I can honestly think of very few other things I've spent $10 or less on and been so pleased with!

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