Week #20 – Nautical nails
Farewell, my lovely Nancy, for it’s now I must leave you,
All on the salt seas I am bound for to go;
But let my long absence be no trouble to you,
For I shall return in the spring, as you know…
This week we’re serving up some serious maritime realness!
Standard skull with crossed sword and bone, the desert island and sunset (a classic 90s nail motif) a ship, circled in rope over a parchmenty effect (white dappled with yellow powder) an anchor, and some merpeople!
So far the sunset proving by far the most popular (when fingers placed together it forms a whole island, like two pieces of a jigsaw – the merpeople compliment each other in a similar way).
I am proudest of the ship, though, as I thought that one could go very badly.
Skull and crossbones is black painted over a white background, oddly, just because I thought this would be easier.
[click on above image for mind-blowing HD]
You love it, we love it.
Goin this way, that way, forward and backwards, over the deep blue sea,
A bottle of rum to fill my tum and THAT’S THE LIFE FOR ME!
A reader has told us about a new technique using loose powder makeup to create an airbrushed, sunset effect. We call it the Powder Gradient. We’ve gone for a festive red, as there have been no red nails on the blog so far.
WHAT WE USED:
We used a red Mary Quant nail polish, about 30 years old. In spite of its vintage age, it was a joy to use, going on way more evenly than any polish I can remember using. and also drying quite quickly.
The gold is a simple loose powder meant for use as an eyeshadow or highlighter.
The black is liquid eyeliner in a design inspired by Illamasqua.
A top coat of Seche Vite.
THE TECHNIQUE: Apply both layers of colour. When colour is still wet, use an eyeshadow brush to collect a generous amount of the powder. Hover brush just over desired area (base or tip) of nail, and tap like cigarette to drop powder.
Drop powder from a greater height to allow it to spread more.
Blow the powder gently in an upwards/downwards direction as desired, again to achieve that faded effect.
When the nail polish is slightly drier, you can use the brush to fill in any awkward gaps in the powder (if this is done when the nail is too wet, you’ll get a gritty, uneven surface)
TIP: The nail varnish must be wet for the powder to stick, so do your second coat, and then the powder sprinkling one nail at a time. Also, when painting your second coat of red, make sure you’re brushing up to the bottom of the first coat, otherwise you’ll have a thin strip of the exposed dry 1st coat at the bottom of the nail where the powder won’t stick. There will therefore be a whisker of the base colour peeking out of where your gradient is supposed to start, making the whole effect look somehow ‘fake’.
We learnt this the hard way.
Further design is painted with black eyeliner, which has the benefit of being fast-drying. I saw this design in an Illamasqua flagship store.
A bit too Christmassy?
Finish with a generous top coat, as always.
Above: no top coat yet.
TIP: Avoid the temptation to rinse off the powder on the skin around your nails until they are dry enough, especial if you use a towel. There’s a sad, sticky moment waiting to happen.
We are in love with this technique. When done well the Powder Gradient can make a nail look professionally airbrushed, from a distance. Up close, the glittery texture of the powder will be stunning to behold.
Lower score, as we feel this colour combination is too Christmassy, and the added black makes it altogether just a bit too aggressive.
Great technique but will try to put it to better use.