Red and Green Christmas Nails

Hello, loyal subjects!  Today I shall teach thee how to create these super festive Christmas nails!

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I really had fun wearing these!  They are pretty simple, but unmistakably Christmas-y.

Here’s what you need to do….

Start with a base coat like always, and  then paint all of your nails except for your ring finger white. Apply a quick dry top coat to your middle finger. Now, we’re going to deal with every finger except the middle finger because we need to wait for the polish to get REALLY dry.IMG_6585

For your ring finger you will need some kind of red glitter polish.  I used Funky Fingers – Ninny Muggins.   To get the glitter fully opaque, I brushed some of the IMG_6586polish to a make-up sponge, waited for a few seconds for the base polish to be absorbed into the sponge, and then I dabbed the glitter onto my nail with the sponge.  When you do this, almost all of the glitter will transfer from the sponge onto your nail.  This allows you to build up the glitter to full opacity with out having too much of the thick clear base polish. IMG_6587   You may need to do this a few times until you get enough glitter to fully cover your nail.  I use this little trick whenever I want a really sparkly over-the-top glitter accent nail!

IMG_6583For your thumb, index finger, and pinky finger, take your largest dotting tool and add three or four dots to each nail.  Space them out pretty well, so that you have room for some large red dots.  And that there is your next step:  take your largest dotting tool and add three or four large red dots to each nail.  After you are done with your large dots, fill in any remaining space with IMG_6584 smaller red and green dots.  Really, there’s no science to this.  Just fill things in the way you like them.

These polka dot nails look cute, right?  Dots are always a great look!  You might be seriously terrible at painting tiny designs on your nails with a detail brush, but get a few dotting tools, and you can make your nails look super cute!

IMG_6577Okay, onto the middle finger.  You can always just paint a little free hand Christmas tree with a little brush.  I decided to make it difficult, so I decided to make my own little Christmas tree stencil.  I started just by sketching some little trees, mostly to figure out what size would fit best on my nail.  It took some trial and error, but I finally figured out a good height and width for my little trees.

I then applied some painters tape to wax paper and folded it in half.  I used my little drawn tree IMG_6575as a guide to trace half a tree onto the tape, with the crease running down the center of the tree.  I then cut the tree out of the tape.  This took a few tries to get right, but I had a whole roll of painters tape, and a whole roll of wax paper, so no worries.  I eventually cut out two trees that were pretty similar!  Huzzah!IMG_6582

Now we come to the most important step of all: wait for the white polish on your middle finger to dry COMPLETELY before you stick your tape stencil onto your nail.  Bone dry.  Like absolutely dry.  This little picture shows what happens when you don’t wait long enough.  Yeah, I know.  Tragic.  And once you do this, IMG_6590there’s just nothing you can do.  You remove all of the polish from that nail and start the heck over.    And you have to make another little Christmas tree tape stencil since you gooped one of them up.  So that’s what I did.  And this time I waited a REALLY long time for the polish to dry before I applied my tape stencil.

So once your white polish on your middle finger is COMPLETELY AND UTTERLY DRY, peel your little stencil from the wax paper and stick it to your nail.  Make sure that your tree is centered on your nail, and press the painters tape down IMG_6599really well.  You don’t want any of the polish to seep under the tape.  Once you have your stencil where you want it, apply a generous coat of green polish over the stencil and then immediately and carefully peel the stencil off your nail.  You will be rewarded for your patience with a cute little tree with nice crisp lines!

Apply a top coat to your nails and you are ready to go!  Please let me know if you recreated this design.  I’d love to see it!

Thanks for reading, and Merry Christmas!  Have a wonderful holiday season!

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Nativity Nails

I love nativities.  I have a beautiful olive wood one that I inherited from my grandparents that I love!  I’ve got a big one in the front yard.  I’ve got lots of little nativity ornaments on my Christmas tree.  For me, these serve as a great reminder of the reason we celebrate Christmas: Christ’s birth.  Because of this, I really like to take a break from the Santa/snowman/candy cane manis and replace them with some nail art that reflects the true meaning of Christmas.

I had a couple ideas rolling around in my head, so I decided to make my right and left hands each a little different.  Here’s my left hand:

IMG_4090The black is craft paint.  The rest is nail polish.  The star glitter was fished out of a glitter polish from a Wet n Wild Fergie polish.  I love these nails!

Here’s my right hand:

IMG_4091I don’t do a lot of these vertical type manis, but I thought this would be a good opportunity.

Here’s a close up of my Baby Jesus nail:

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Except for the blue base color and the sparkly background “light”, this was done entirely with craft paint. It always creeps me out a little to see a picture of my nails this close up.

And here’s the reason you should keep practicing your nail art:

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These are the nativity nails that I did last year.  I have since had a TON of practice, learned a few tricks and techniques, and gotten a finer paint brush.  Sometimes progress comes in such tiny steps that it’s sort of hard to see, so looking back a full year to see my improvement is really encouraging.  I’ve still got lots of room for growth!

Thanks for reading!

Candy Cane Water Marble Adventures

I’m finally getting around to my first post this week.  Pathetic, I know, but this time of year gets a little cray-cray.  I’ve seen lots of cute red and white water marble nails on instagram and that inspired me to take another stab at water marbling.  I painted my nails white, and then I made my “bullseye” with alternating rings of red and clear polish.  Here was my first attempt:

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The results were “meh” at best.  My top coat streaked the polish, plus I somehow buggered up my middle finger.  I did, however, like how this finger turned out:

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Hmmm…. the picture looked much clearer before I zoomed in.

Anyway, a few days later I decided to take another stab at it.  This time I opted for a white polish with a frost finish for my base color.  I also decided to create my “bullseye” using red, then clear, then green, then clear, then red…

Here are those results:

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I was much happier with these!  I don’t usually love a frost finish, but I think it’s perfect for this look!  Here’s my favorite nail:

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This one felt like a victory for me!  I wish I had a peppermint scented top coat.  That would be so perfect!  Anyway, thanks for reading!

Advent Nails

I’m guessing that some of you are super familiar with Advent, while others of you are like, “Wha…?”  Advent, which simply means “arrival” is celebrated by Christians for the four weeks leading up to Christmas, Jesus’ arrival.  (Yeah, we all know that He wasn’t actually born on December 25, but that’s when we celebrate His birth anyway.  Can we please avoid arguments about that?  Thanks.)  Anyway, each of the four weeks has a theme.  Week 1 is hope, week 2 is peace, week 3 is joy, week 4 is love.  Lots of churches, including ours will light one candle the first week, 2 candles the second week, etc., and read scripture and/or sing songs that revolve around the week’s theme.

My hubby and I were asked to light the candles and read the scripture for this past week, so I figured that I should have appropriate nails.  Here they are:

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The gold is Wet n Wild Fergie – Gold Album.  I topped it with a multicolored glitter polish.  The purple on my middle finger is Gap – Pop Star.  I’m pretty sure this polish is more than a decade old.  The background color for the candles is Wet n Wild – Echo Dark that I used most recently for a matte jelly sandwich in this post.

Here’s a close up of my ring finger:

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Everything on this nail, besides Echo Dark is craft paint.

I’m really happy with how these turned out!  They are so festive, but are a nice change of pace from snowmen, reindeer, and Santa.

Thanks for reading!

Sparkly Red Snowman Nails

Let the Christmas manis begin!  Here’s how I kicked things off this year:

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The red and white are nail polish, but all of the details on the snowman are craft paint.  Here’s a better view:

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I was tempted to add stripes to his scarf, but I just didn’t quite trust that I wouldn’t screw up the whole thing.

Oh, and I must tell you about this amazing red polish.

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It’s Broadway Nails – Hot & Sexy.  It’s a red micro glitter in a red jelly base.  When you apply it to your nail, the glitter sort of sinks down so that the surface of the polish is incredibly smooth and shiny.  You know how some micro glitter polishes have a textured finish and if you want them to really be sparkly, you need to add like, four layers of top coat?  Well, this is not like that at all.  The sparkle on this polish has such depth!  I’m really going to have to fight the urge to make this the base of every Christmas mani.

That’s all for now!  Thanks for reading, liking, following and commenting!