With all the amazing nail polishes out there and the super duper incredible nail designs I see all over instagram I was determined to learn how to be my own manicurist and was equally determined to develop some mad skills when it comes to nail polish (that last part is still a work in progress). To start off I decide to try out all the cute press on / glue on nails, it seemed logical, looked easy, it's fast, basically no dry time and they are available at the local drugstore, beauty stores, etc...plus they were not a long term commitment.
Pookie and I found these at Claire's and I think they were buy one set get one set half off. Roughly nine dollars-ish for two packs. They came with glue and went on like magic. Unbelievably easy and to my shock they stayed on! I blame this particular experience with the crazy that came after.
Since the glue on / press on nails were a HIT, we (Pookie and I) advanced to the sticker decal thingys. This wasn't my first attempt at nail stickers but was my first time trying them out with a pattern. After the first two nails, I was moving along and had them all done in under ten minutes, not to mention I had no rips, bubbles or mishaps. They stayed on for a week easy with out any wear and tear and probably would have been find to wear a little longer but I was in the mood for sparkle and moved on to the next batch of nail goodies.
Sidenote: I will definitely look for more of these I believe they were from Walgreens and either Sally Hansen or Kiss brand ( I can't remember....I've inhaled to much polish remover fumes). I think they will would look fabulous with an all chocolate or creme monochromatic outfit this fall.
Since these were a breeze to apply I have since ordered Jamberry nail stickers and will be trying those out very, very soon.
At this point I had tried glue on/press on nails in patterns, nail decals/stickers in animal print, naturally the next stop was GLITTER. These were from IMPRESS (available at Walgreens, Walmart, drugstores, approx $7) and the color was vibrant with lots of sparkle and easy to apply. I didn't obviously do a fabulous job on my birdie finger (it looks a little wonky in the photo). I tried these two ways - they come with little glue tabs already attached and you peel and press immediately on to your nail. Easy enough, but that kind of scared me...the staying power didn't fill me with confidence that I wasn't going to look down and be missing half my
nails. To experiment I applied half the nails with the glue tabs only and the other half I pulled the glue tabs off and added my own liquid nail glue. The ones with the additional liquid nail glue lasted longer. My suggestion is add the additional liquid nail glue ( you will need to purchase separately).
These were either IMPRESS or KISS brand ( I can't remember) and I was not a fan. The only reason I wouldn't buy these again was that they were a medium length, I missed that in bold letters on the box when I was purchasing them so I thought I'd try them anyway. They held up fine, I strictly prefer a short length and that's the only reason I would not purchase these again. They were a little busy...how can I even type that after blue glitter nails, leopard print and pink, black and white stripes, polka dots and bows.
A look at the packaging. The brand IMPRESS comes in a box, but once opened it looks like they are inside a nail polish bottle...the packaging alone sang to me - SOOOOOOOOOOOOO CuTe!
I mastered the glue on/press on nails and nail stickers, because it's so hard...NOT! Next up, real big girl nail polish! Nail polish SCARES me, I had a very bad experience with nail polish once and since it kind of left a very bad impact (or my mom would say I learned a vaulable lesson).
What happened you might be wondering - short story: In high school parents were out of town and I was home and decided to paint my nails. Before leaving my mom told me not to paint my nails in the family room. I decide to paint my nails and that I wanted to watch a movie while applying the polish and waiting for it to dry so I'll paint them in the family room (who's gonna know). Three or four finger nails into painting my nails, the RED nail polish I was using slipped out of my hands and went ALL over my Mom's new WHITE carpet!
At that point I may have blacked out, after my life flashed before my eyes.
In a panic I grabbed the nail polish remover ( that was next to me) and poured it all over the carpet and begin to scrub....OH DEAR LORD never, never, never do that! It looked like someone had been murdered on our family room floor.
Let's recap, I was told not to polish my nails in family room (check), Red polish spills everywhere (check), nail polish remover makes the whole situation ten times worse (check, check)...and my parents are due home in a few hours!
Panic can not begin to explain my level of FREAK OUT at that point.
I forgot to mention, it's a SUNDAY. I started calling carpet cleaning companies looking for a possible solution and after about ten, YES I found one and for several hundred dollars he will come out and try to see what he could do (remember my parents are only hours away).
I'm in high school I did not have several hundred dollars. Enter - more super duper freaking out!
I called one of my Aunts and first asked her to promise not to ever repeat what I was about to ask her even if the answer was no. She agreed, I explained, and she came over brought me the money and never told my parents. I swear for months I couldn't walk in that room. I will never forget how super cool my Aunt was about the whole thing and how she kept her promise, my parents found out when I was in college and we all laughed about it.
Since then I rarely bought nail polish, I'd use something at the nail salon or went with clear. When I did paint my nails again there were tarps involved and the result has always been the same - not great! So after the glue on/press on and nail stickers I natural thought I need to get a handle on real nail polish and try again. As you can see in the picture I'm not going to be a professional manicurist anytime soon but progress has been made. I'm not wild about the overall black sparkle color I tried but I'm not stressing because 98% of the polish is actually on my nails and not my skin. In the picture they look thick and lumpy but in person I promise they are not. I did use an E.L.F. tiny crease brush dipped in nail polish remover to try and clean up the edges.
The picture above shows the products I use to paint my nails and listed in order of use.
1. Basecoat, apply one coat - Orly Bonder Rubberized Basecoat (available at Ulta).
2. Apply two coats of nail color - the black sparkle in the photo is L'Oreal #139 Rough Around The Edges (purchased at Walgreens) and the gold glitter polish ( that I LOVE) is by ORLY and the color is Halo (purchased mine at Ulta).
3. Seche Vita Dry Fast Top Coat, apply one coat - it is fast drying I purchased mine at Ulta but have seen it as Sally's Beauty.
4. Once that has all dried I apply two coats of American Classics GELOUS to give the finished results a gel look and shine.
5. I do like to add a cuticle oil to my cuticles at night before bed or on long rides to horse shows and I have to say I have not found a cuticle oil that is amazeballs. So far all my experiences with cuticle oil have been great but I haven't tried anything yet that has moved me to buy a second bottle. The one pictured is from Sally's Beauty Supply is smells nice, feels good and works, its by California Mango and is called Mango Magic Cuticle Oil.
6. Not pictured ( I forgot) is my Sally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover, I use the cuticle remover before I ever get started with my nails, even before press on/ glue on nails or nail stickers. It takes a minute and I think it helps.
7. Nail polish remover I use to remove basic nail colors (without sparkle or glitter) is by Zoya, the 3-in-1 formula (polish remover, nail cleaner and nail prep, available at Ulta). Nail Polish I use to remove sparkle or glitter is from CVS or Walgreens either stores genetic brand 100% acetone nail polish remover. Its harsh, but lets be real, to get glitter nail polish off it has to be. A little tip to remove glitter polish - apply acetone to a cotton ball, apply to nail, put a band-aid on top and stick to finger, wait, and wait, and wait...remove band-aid and cotton ball and the polish should come off much easier.
Hope that helps you out. If you have any nail products you'd like to share with me or helpful nail tips please leave a comment.
Have a great weekend.
* Lesson learned - never polish your nails in the family room if you don't have several hundred dollars handy.