Saturday, June 23, 2012

review: Sally Hansen Nail Polish Strips

review: Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips in "All-A-Flutter"

I like the idea of these, but I've always been skeptical that they would fit my wide nails, and at $8/box I wasn't willing to give it a try.  But today I saw this Spring pattern on clearance and decided to risk the $2.61 :)

they're very easy to use with the included instructions, and because my nails are quite stubby at the moment I cut each in half so I did all 10 of my nails with only half the box.  It comes with 8 sizes (2 each), of which 5 should match your nail bed size.  The largest wasn't quite wide enough for my thumbnails, but it looks fine.

The hardest parts were separating the layers and applying it straight.  some nails I didn't get it centered until the 4th try, but as long as I didn't push it down until it was right, it was surprisingly repositionable.  And unlike most nail polish, my right hand looked pretty much as good as my left, though I accidently applied two nail sizes reversed.

If you want to cheat and get two nails out of each strip, cut it with scissors after verifying that it will be long enough for each nail.  trim the tab end with the scissors, because the tab does not come off cleanly.  peel the layers and hold the strip on the straight cut side and proceed as directed.

I just did them so I can't verify to how long they'll stay put.  I'll try to remember and report that later :)

I will want to experiment with applying these over polish, on part of the nail only, etc.  maybe I'll be nice and put one of the tiny ones I have left over onto my daughter's nails (most polish only lasts 30 minutes on her :)


 4 days later they were virtually perfect, just a slight wearing off at the tips.  And I was not babying it either - that's after dishes, laundry, cooking, and endless handwashing.  But I was getting restless with the pale butterflies, so cleaned one hand off last night (and even with acetone polish remover, was quite reluctant to come off!)
Most of my nail polish would be horribly chipped by the 3rd day.This makes me think that a more generic pattern/color of polish strips might actually be worth it if it lasts the 10 days the box claims.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

how to paint your nails like they haven't been painted, in 4 easy steps

This is how I do a french manicure.  Nothing official about it (never been taught how) but this method works for me.

start with clean, polish free nails (duh)
1) apply white polish to tips only.  sweep across with small tipped brush (like on nail art bottle or mini bottle).  when I'm doing my right hand I sometimes just roll the finger nail under the brush rather than pulling the brush (did that make sense? :)  don't worry about polish that ends up off the nail.  If it comes out really crooked, you can just remove that nail's polish and reapply. (an advantage to doing this step first)
2) apply thin coat of nude polish (light milky pink or peach color).  this evens out the nail's color and protects the nail. again, don't worry about stray polish
3) apply clear polish as top coat.  sometimes I'll use a sparkle polish for the top layer, but I usually regret doing anything else :)  I like seche vite because it dries fast, seems to harden the polish underneath, and is super shiny.  but it literally stinks!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Summer nails: watermelon!

whimsical nails done to celebrate the end of the school year and the start of Summer: watermelons!

I primed the nails with clear, then painted the whole nail Maybelline Express Finish in "Racy Red", two coats.  then I drew white stripes on the nail bed (wide enough to paint the green stripe over it, because the green looked brown directly over the red).  Then I painted dark green (SH "Emerald City") over the white and black dots over the red (Sinful Color's Nail Art in "Time Off".  Once everything had dried thoroughly I coated it all with Seche Vite, which gave it a lovely juicy shine :)

the right hand was just Racy Red, I painted my big toes as watermelons and the rest of my toes Racy Red as well.  I considered painting the edge white and green instead of the nailbed side,but figured this way would look better as it wore off.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Spring/Easter nails

inspired by the egg hunt we're doing with the moms club tomorrow :)

All polish, done in various shades of Sally Hansen polish and Sinful Colors nail art polish. sealed with seche vite .  sorry the pic quality is so crappy.

Monday, March 19, 2012

More Irish nail designs

these were just going to be green sparkly (Nicole by OPI's Brilliant Idea over Maybelline Express Finish's Go Go Green) but a layer of Essie's Shine of the Times added specks of orange gold from certain angles.  Fun combo of colors/effects

For the thumb: I accidentally rubbed off a section of polish, so I painted it black and added detail with same Essie over black and some bits of shine from SH's In The Spotlight :)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

St. Patrick's Day nail art

Here's my St. Patrick's Day themed nails.  Don't love the finger designs but they came out nice enough.  The one on the right is supposed to be a harp, hence the music notes because it didn't come out very obvious :).  The thumb is pretty cool though the picture above doesn't do it justice.

Basic manicure plus black sharpie marker and various Sinful Nail Art colors (orange, green, gold, black) plus some OPI glitter polish for accents.  sealed with Seche Vite topcoat

Monday, March 5, 2012


took a few tries to get the "cake" portion color right, probably should have practiced it on paper first :)  cherry is sparkly red applied with end of a bobby pin.  sprinkles are dotted with the pointed side of an orange stick, and black lines are drawn with black Milani Nail Art polish

this design exists all over the net, but I thought it would be better the other way up (frosting along edge of nail.)  After doing thumb that way, I decided they all had it right, even if my nails are pretty stubby right now :)