12 August 2014

The Digit-al Dozen Does Summer, Day One: Shimmering Sands

Hi everyone! I love Digit-al Dozen week on the blog - don't you!? I've been doing so much swatching that I miss nail art, so a whole week of it sounds perfect. This month's challenge is summer, so think vacations, beaches, mixed drinks (non-alcoholic if you prefer), bright colours... To be honest, I have no idea what I'm going to do for the rest of the week, but I'm loving this first design.

Shimmering sands beach nail art
Shimmering sands beach nail art


About this design:

The inspiration for doing beach nails came from some seashell studs I got from the Winstonia Store. I recommend that you NOT get them from there (more on that later). I know I'm not the first person to do beach nails, but I didn't really look at any design/nail artist in particular. I just knew that I wanted a layered gradient with some glitter to make it look shimmery (hence the name). I also wanted to incorporate some of the studs that I have in my collection.

Shimmering sands beach nail art
Shimmering sands beach nail art

To get this look:

I started with a blue base; to get a gradient that looked natural I worked with torn bits of makeup sponge and built up the sand gradually. For the sand, I layered the polishes in the order listed, starting with the Butter London and ending with the Renaissance Cosmetics glitter.

For the studs I attached them with small dobs of top coat, and sealed them with a layer of top coat - except for the larger opal stud, where I painted the top coat around it.

Shimmering sands beach nail art
Shimmering sands beach nail art


  • Base: Essie Hide & Go Chic
  • Sand: Butter London Yummy Mummy, OPI My Vampire is Buff, Zoya Godiva, Renaissance Cosmetics Gilded Pleasure
  • Water: Aly's Dream Polish Ocean
  • Studs: Shells (Winstonia); small 2mm gold round (Shop Nailasaurus); 1mm gold rounds, white opal Swarovski rhinestones (The Nail Room)
  • Top Coat: KBShimmer Clearly On Top


Shimmering sands beach nail art
Shimmering sands beach nail art

I really am enjoying the sea shell studs - I hope they stay popular for awhile. But why do I regret getting them from the Winstonia Store? Well for starters, they are very expensive - $4.25 for 10 of them. You are better off getting them at the Born Pretty Store for cheaper (and you can use my coupon code). Second, after a mixup where they only sent me 9 studs, they offered to refund me for the extra stud. That would be fine for any other product, but what if I wanted to wear a stud on each nail? There's 10 studs for a reason!! I think I'm a pretty lax customer, but I do have my limits. :)

Shimmering sands beach nail art
Shimmering sands beach nail art

Final Thoughts: 

I love the addition of the studs - it reminds me of coins or glistening jewels. The larger opal rhinestone looks somewhat awkward in the photos, but in real life you see the shimmer more, and it works with the whole look.

What do you think of this design? Do you like using nail studs?

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21 comments:

  1. These are so stunning! There is so much detail and dimension to them but they aren't gaudy or outrageous. Love them!!

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  2. What pretty beachy nails! I love all the studs and embellishments too!

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  3. These are absolutely amazing! I love the textured look- it really mimics the look of sand perfectly, without looking gross. I don't think I could handle having this much texture on my nails, though, haha!

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  4. This looks stunning! Sorry about your issue with the studs. Your water looks so beautifully blue! :)

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  5. These are beautiful! The glitter that you added really makes the sand look real. Those opal rhinestones are really interesting too!

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  6. These are pure perfection! Perfect polishes for this look...and you placed the 3D elements flawlessly!

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  7. I'd never thought of using opal studs (or pearls) on a beach mani but they're totally perfect.

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  8. these nails are freaking awesome! I'm not a fan of overload nailart but this one looks fantastic! so creative <3

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  9. This is the prettiest beach mani I've ever seen!

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  10. i love all the textures in this, that's what makes it a winner xx

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  11. Beautiful! The texture you've created in the sand really makes this stand out :)

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  12. I also did a beach mani! :) But I love how you added the sparkle, Guilded Pleasure is perfect!

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  13. I love it. There are lots of beach manis out there, but this one is still different. I like the way you textured the sand and did the gradient for it most of all.

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  14. Stunning beach nails! I want to try those shells sometimes; I'll keep your tip in mind!

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  15. Oh my gosh, these are flawless!

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  16. I love this! Beach mani's are my faves!

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  17. *heavy sigh* these are just SO beautiful and amazing and perfect! There's so much happening and the scale is so right on!

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