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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

At Your Fingertips

There's just something about having a great manicure. Sometimes, I feel like an outfit isn't complete without freshly painted nails... During summer months, I sport a lot of vibrant and neon colors - purples, yellows, greens and reds. But as the weather turns cold, I turn to darker browns, blacks, reds and yes, purple.

Recently bored with just a plain ol' polish change, I stumbled across nail mecca Valley in NYC. I have yet to experience their nail splendor, but their designs inspired me to break out of the norm. Typically, I paint all of my fingers the same colors, EXCEPT for my ring finger. To me, that's been my signature as of late. But as I perused Valley's nail art, I figured I might as well try to replicate some of the designs on my own.

Why not rock some zebra print with a pair of skinny jeans, black blazer and wedges? Kid Sister pulls off nail art like a pro. After all, nails can be an accessory, too!

After perusing for nail tutorials, I tried my hand at nail gradient art. Surprisingly, this intricate design is relatively easy to do!

I think it turned it pretty well for my first try.

To replicate this gradient look, you'll need tonal colors that you'll be able to layer, yet see each color, and a makeup triangle sponge. I opted for purples and pinks. I used the colors in order as they appear in the image. Basically, three to four colors will do.

First, start with a base coat of light polish on all of your nails. After it dries, start with the second lightest color (yet darker than your base coat). Apply some of the polish on a corner of the sponge and dab on each finger, starting halfway on our nail, slowly building up to the top. You can apply two coats if necessary.

Repeat the same process with the second darkest color, but layer this color halfway on top of the previous layer you just completed, moving higher toward the tip of your nail. Finally, add the darkest color to the tip of your nail. Complete it with a shimmery topcoat, and bam! You're done!

Or, check out this video.  Good luck!