SmartFem® Magazine for Women - Phoenix, Arizona                   -- Subscribe to SmartFemNews Feed

Manicure Madness


With the advent of Pinterest and Tumblr and various other social media outlets the creativity of the world has dramatically erupted and I have to say, our world is way prettier because of it. Not that all these innovative and unique ideas and people didn’t exist before these site, but I definitely believe that they have helped to publicize and really help to spread the ideas.

But with all these new nail trends comes quite a challenge: recreating them yourself when your in a hurry! I know that I don’t exactly have a ton of time to handcraft an intricate design on my nails, let alone the fact that I am still quite shaky when not painting with my good hand. So I have crafted two of my own go-to nail designs that are simple, quick and super fun!

“Marcia, Marcia, Marcia!”

My first nail design that I tend to go with is the classic Marcia, Marcia, Marcia! This is a demure manicure perfect for those who are keen on the finer details in life. I am adorned with the color pink, so I chose a faint shade of pink for my base. It is a matte, which is nice to have for a solid foundation. I painted two coats of this color.

Then I decided to add a chic stripe on the left side of each of my nails. Again, I went with a sparkly pink to keep in line with my color scheme, but you can always add another color here as color-blocking is huge! The first coating was pretty, but I really wanted to sparkle, so I added another coat to each nail. Of course, I always like to showcase my ring fingers – I think it is just the perfect accent finger. I chose to paint the entire nail with the sparkle that I used on the other fingers. And again, I went with two coats for that super glistening finish.

But I wasn’t done there. I still felt it needed a little something to really take it up a notch, so I went with an even darker shade of a sparkling pink nail polish (yes I own quite a lot of this color) and created a super-thin line on the edge of my nails where the sparkle line was. I topped the Marcia, Marcia, Marcia off with clear to seal in the sparkling perfection!

“Staircase to Success!”

My other go-to look is what I like to call the chic Staircase to Success! Yes, that is quite the name for a manicure, but it certainly deserves it. This powerful manicure has structure and elegance, and of course includes a dash of sparkle! I decided to go with a black and grey color scheme for it this time, because it went with my outfit of course.

The base of the manicure is a shimmering silver/grey polish. I like it because it is sleek but not too much, so it can certainly still be professional. It is a sheer color, so I went with two coats for my base, but it certainly could have worked with one. I then began to build my staircase with a shimmering black nail polish. The shimmer makes the polish not as black to me. On my pinky nail was the smallest line of black, then I began painting more and more of each nail, having my thumb nail completely covered with the black polish.

A good height key for this would be your middle finger completely split in half with grey and black. For the stairs I went with two coats yet again to really make sure the black was a punch of color and stood out. Be careful on that second coat though, it can be easy to get carried away and paint over that first line you created. To finish it I wanted to set apart my ring fingers again, so I decided to paint over the black stair on those nails with a sparkling black nail polish. This is an extremely subtle detail on the Staircase to Success that to the average eye one might not notice, but if you look closely you can see the glimmer on those nails!

Customizing Your House Key with Nail Polish


In the consumer world we live in sometimes it seems easier and faster to simply purchase items rather than making your own, but that leads to mass amounts of items and keeps you from being the original and unique self that you are.

One thing that we used to customize at home was our house keys. I remember getting my first one and being super excited to decorate it and make it unique and then showing it off at school – which in the end led me to losing it, but I did enjoy it while I did have it! Now it is simple to just run to any grocery or home repair store and pick up one of the many keys they have on stock, but then all the fun of creating your own special key is taken away.

So I have created a custom key that only I can have and I just love that! Below I have photographed my step-by-step process of creating my candy-stripe key that I made with something most of you probably already own, nail polish!

Step 1: First make sure that your key is extremely clean. You don’t want to start painting it with any dirt on it, so make sure you have a clean slate to begin on. Then I added a thin coat of clear nail polish to create the base level of your key.

Step 2: I then began to coat the entire key with a silver nail polish. This is a metallic shade so it glistens in the lights, but matte colors are great for this as well. The color I chose was unfortunately quite sheer so I painted three coats of the silver, allowing ample drying time between each layer.

Step 3: This is where the real fun begins! You can basically do any design you would like on the key now that you have a solid coat for the background. I chose to play around with some sparkly pink stripes, but anything from polka-dots to hearts or other shapes can be super easy to create and lots of fun! After the pink stripes I thought it needed just a little bit more pizazz, so I added more sparkle, of course! I lined the edges of the key with shimmering black nail polish.

 

Step 4: Now that all the colorful additions are done on your key, make sure to let the paint sit and dry for plenty of time. After that it is time for the final clear coat to seal the polish in. I layered it on a little thick for this coat just to make sure it was nice and smooth. I recommend leaving it for an hour to fully dry before using it, and then of course enjoy it and make sure to show it off to all your friends when it is complete!