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Tutorial #005: Ombre Nails

Ombre nails are some of the most awesome patterns a person can do. You wouldn’t know it by looking at them but they’re easy to achieve, even for a beginner. In fact, they’re hard to mess up as long as you use the right polishes and good sponges.

Keep on reading for the actual tutorial and tons of photos of other ombre manicures!

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Manicure #007: Striking Stripes

This manicure was freehanded and took about half an hour. The base coat is Sand Tropez by Essie and the other stripes include Play Date (Essie), Big Spender (Essie), and Smokin’ Hot (Essie). At first I really wanted everything to be perfect so I actually used tape for the first stripe (the lilac color). I quickly realized I wasn’t going to have enough patience to let everything dry between stripes and decided to do it on my own. I actually kind of like the subtle imperfections but I wish–as always–I had done a better job with cleanup. I don’t know what my deal has been lately but I feel like my nails just look messy no matter what I do. I think it has to do mostly with my cuticles needing some serious help. They’re dry, uneven, and all around crappy looking. Tomorrow I’m heading to Sally’s Beauty Supply to find some cuticle remover and I might even push them back. I’ve read it’s best to avoid doing this too much so I’ll try to keep it to a minimum but I don’t think there’s any avoiding it if I want to keep things even. Anyway, here are lots of photos of this manicure. Please tell me what you think!

Are you sick of it yet? =)

Manicure #006: Tape Happy Two

Today’s manicure is brought to you by Big Spender (Essie) and Mint Apple (Sinful Colors). I had originally planned on doing more with it but the Mint Apple proved difficult. It’s hard to explain but it’s one of those polishes that just ends up really thick, even with just one coat. Because it was so goopy (new word time!) I knew that unless I let it dry for a few hours or a day it would end up peeling off with another layer of tape. Oh well, it looked good anyway, right? I wish I had cleaned it up a little better though. I was working with regular light and didn’t have the overhead on like an idiot so I missed a few things that I never saw until after the photos were taken. Ah well, such is life. Try to imagine this mani without the crappy cuticles and random spots of polish!

This manicure and the last both used Scotch tape. I don’t know why but that’s my favorite kind of manicure to do right now. It’s so fun and easy, not to mention it’s really a quick way to achieve perfect lines (which is good for someone who is so picky like me). Obviously this particular mani isn’t 100% perfect but that has more to do with me being a newbie than anything else. I have confidence that once I get a little more practice I’ll be able to do something damn near perfect… or I hope so at least!

Polish Review #006

Today’s review is going to be on Essie’s Big Spender. I’ve basically reached the conclusion that all Essie polishes are simply fantastic and nothing less. Obviously this is a well established opinion among many bloggers and nail aficionados alike but I’m here to say it yet again nonetheless.

First of all, I love Essie’s brushes. They’re narrow and their formula does not glob up (so to speak) at the end of the brush. Once you apply it you can push down slightly and the brush fans out creating a very straight line that helps get perfect edges near your cuticles when utilized properly. I’m far from perfect when it comes to painting nails as you can probably see but the Essie polishes help make it look like I might even know what I’m doing, haha.

Secondly, their formula is amazing. Once again I know I’m stating the obvious but still… This stuff is wonderful! It goes on so smoothly and you could definitely get away with one coat if you’re in a hurry like I often am. Here’s a photo of my pointer finger after just one coat:

I swear on everything that this photo has not been retouched save the watermark and a little sharpening (the lighting was terrible and made it difficult for my phone to take a good photo that wasn’t blurry). I actually only used four brush strokes to achieve this. After a second coat the deal was sealed so to say. I knew I was in love after I finished my first nail!

Lastly the color is absolutely gorgeous. Big Spender is an extremely rich fuchsia color and it has tons of shine. You won’t even need a topcoat. I used one for a quick dry and longer wear but my nails would’ve looked just as good without.

This last photo is as true to the color as it gets. It really is that beautiful! This polish has now become one of my top five out of the 60 or so bottles I now own and love. Speaking of which, this morning I bought two bottles of Essie, three bottles of Sinful Colors, and two bottles of L’oreal polish. So far I’ve tried one of each and have to admit that I am not impressed by the latter two. I’m still going to give them a chance by trying the others out and I’ll post more about them later on.

Thanks for stopping by!