Today on the T I looked across the aisle and saw a girl with a nice pink mani with sparkly index fingers. Are accent nails still a thing? I thought. I guess in Boston slapping on a sparkle top coat still counts as fashion forward but I’m looking to push the accent nail envelope right over the fucking EDGE.
Sometime in the last year, I decided to force my psychic angst through the pinhole of taking really good care of my nails. You can catch me at all times scratching the gunk out and pushing back my cuticles like a bored gun moll waiting for her man to finish up the execution. And since I have ample time during break to go beyond two coats of Wicked, I’m honing my French mani skills!
A pink and white French will cost you like $20, but with a little practice and a lot of Scotch tape, you can do it yourself.Notes on tape manis: after many ruined base coats, I read that you should take some of the stickiness off the tape by sticking it to your palm a few times. A whole new world!
In keeping with my St. Tropez Faux Fancy theme this winter, I tried a resort-y understated mani with a coral accent nail! I used all Essie everything in Limo-scene, Sand Tropez, and Action.
The success of the ~*tRoPiCal EsCaPe*~ nails gave me the confidence to take on two other internet manis that I have long admired. When I told my friend at the nail salon that I wanted a black and gold French before school, she fully laughed in my face and turned to the little girl next to her at the dryer to tell her about my whims. The black on black French is a classier alternative, and it (probably) won’t make your grandma think you’re in a Rhianna S&M sex club.
Excuse the raggedy cuticles/uneven tips. For some reason I was legitimately afraid that the Rite Aid black nail polish I used would not come off my skin. Invest in your materials! NYC Matte Me Crazy is pretty dece, but Essie Matte About You is apparently “worth every penny”. I painted the whole nail with matte topcoat and then taped the tips and used whatever regular topcoat was around, but there is probably a better strategy.
Tumblr L-O-V-Es Nebula nails because everyone thinks Doctor Who is going to jump through their window and kidnap them in his time box, but they did make me feel like I had the Aquilian Galaxy on my fingies.
Nebula nails are less artistically arduous and more fucking time consuming. By the time I put on the top coat I felt like Snooki in her 8th month of pregnancy, ie. “so over it”. It takes about 8 different sparkle polishes, which helped me justify my many impulsive glitter purchases over the break. You’ll need those triangle make-up sponges, and Q-Tips if you want to get artsy.
There are a plethora of Nebula nail tutorials out there, but after the base color and highlight you can basically go to town. For my base I used Explosive Meteorite from Brucci, then created the nebula layers by dabbing two or three brushfuls of the chosen color on the corner of the make-up wedge and applying with a light touch to the nail. Don’t be scared about fucking up, because its basically a Jackson Pollock painting on your fingers, and you can always start over.
After finishing one thumb I realized there was no way I was going to gently dab each nail with the 5 different colors needed, so instead I made the rest of them ‘milkyways’ by dabbing a bunch of golds vertically.
The next step up in the nail game are those pointy, harpie nails a la Queen Bey, but I work with children and it might be kind of frowned upon.