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30 Aug 2016

  • 11534 Rank

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Published on: 14 Feb 2017 by rudyard

Essential Nail Art Tips and Tricks

If you love a new look for your nails on a weekly basis, or you're short on time or cash for dashing out to the nail salon, here's some great nail art tips and tricks that we've come up with for a professional finish, done by your own fair hand!

The Prep work

Start with a clean finish. Line your nails with Vaseline or petroleum jelly using a cotton bud so that it's easier to clean your hands and nails once you've finished painting them. 

To prevent chipping, paint your nails with two base coats - one covering the whole nail and one covering the top half of the nail as this tends to chip first.

Don't shake your nail varnish bottle! Instead, roll it between your hands as this prevents bubbles forming in the bottle which are hard to get rid of once the varnish is on your nails.

The artwork

For the more intricate designs use a gel pen from a craft shop. For designs with the ultimate in stand out a fine black pen works really well. Give the ink 30 minutes to dry properly before applying your top coat to seal in the design.

Polka dots are easy if you use the end of a Kirby grip. Simply dip the larger point in the nail varnish pot and apply in the design you like.

Similarly, you can use a join the dots approach for lines, zig zags and grids. After applying two base coasts, use a gel artwork pen to lay out a balanced design then join the dots with zig zag lines, chevrons or grids. Then simply paint over with a final top coat. 

For a stone look, paint your chosen base colour first then scrunch up a food bag and apply your chosen top coat colour to the scrunched up bag. Rub the bag over your nails for a natural stone-look finish. Paint a clear top coat on and your're good to go! 

If you love this seasons's rhinestones, use a waxy pencil with a little bit of grip to apply as many rhinestones as you wish to your nails. Simply paint your base and colour coats then apply the rhinestones using the semi-sharpened pencil. 

For the ultimate in clean but glamorous nail art, first do a French manicure on both hands but skip the top coat at this stage. Use a glitter pen to add a fine glitter edge along the bottom of the clean white line before applying your clear top coat. This takes you from office to night out in minutes, and it looks like you've just walked out of the beauty salon!

Lace is a great choice for an elegant look. Once you've painted your base colour and it has dried, place some lace ribbon over the nail and paint over in a contrasting colour. You can even add a rhinestone to the top for extra elegance. 

For block neon coloured nails, use a white base coat instead of a clear one to give extra oomph to your nails. 

A fanned nail brush should be an essential part of your nail kit for a natural striped look. You can use the brush to paint as many contrasting colours over your original coloured base coat as you wish. 

The Finishing touch

Once you've finished your nail art manicure, dip your nails in ice cold water with ice cubes in it to seal in the design. It'll last longer and dries much faster. 

So, what are you waiting for? Grab your nail varnish and get creative!



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