Showing posts with label From the Readers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label From the Readers. Show all posts

26 October 2014

From the Readers: Fall Nail Art

Hi everyone! A few weeks ago, I put out a call for readers to submit their fall nail art. After much delay I went through the fall nail art designs many of you submitted. I had close to 50 submissions and believe me, every one of them was good. Narrowing it down was extremely difficult, but I finally was able to decide on eight fabulous designs to feature! If you weren't selected, please remember that I hope to do this in the future, maybe even make it a bi-monthly feature. So please submit again, because I'd love to feature as many people as possible.

Make sure to check out the full post, and to visit each nail artist's blog or Instagram. They are all very talented and deserve a like or follow!



27 September 2014

Submit Your Fall Nail Art For the Next "From the Readers" Feature

Hi everyone! Last year, you may recall that I did a "From the Readers" series on easy nail art tips and techniques. And it was great, it was awesome, and I never did it again! Why?! I loved the amazing submissions and the response, and I've been thinking for a long time of reviving that idea. How would you feel about a quarterly or bi-monthly "From the Readers" post?



09 July 2013

From the Readers: Your Easy Nail Art Tips and Techniques, Part Three

This is a short series of posts where I take a look at some easy nail art tips and techniques sent in by readers and followers of this blog on Facebook and Instagram. Make sure to check out Part One and Part Two of this series for some background info as well as more great responses!

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Hi everyone! I meant to have this earlier but I got lazy about blogging over the weekend. That and I got sucked into watching Arrested Development, like the whole thing!

The suggestions I've grouped for today's post lack a cohesive theme. So I guess what groups these suggestions is the fact that they tend to be more unique. So today's post will be a hodge-podge of ideas, but I think for that reason, this post contains some of my favourite ideas. Along with many ideas I hadn't previously considered. It's not the most clearly organized, but trust me, it's worth a read through.

KISS (Keep it Simple Stupid)

Out of all the possibilities for easy nail art, one thing we haven't looked at is stripes. If you have a steady, or sort-of steady hand, it can be very easy for a full mani, or an accent nail.

That's why I love Kelli's suggestion. She blogs at The Nail Polish Challenge (blog): "I think that freehand stripes and striping tape are simple and look GREAT! My readers especially love my striped manicures, and they usually take so little time."

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Monica, who didn't submit a picture, had the following suggestion: "The most easy nail art that comes to mind is dots and stripes. I also like galaxy, leopard and zebra print." I tend to think of galaxy manicures as more complicated, but if you limit the colours you use, they can be very simple. And it just requires some sponging and a few dots for stars.

I also tend to think of stained glass manis as more complicated, but as @pinkinpolish (Instagram) demonstrates, they can be very easy if you go with a simple design. As she says: "Stained glass manicures are really cool and easy to do. I used @blueemster 's pictorial on IG to make an accent nail. They look intricate but aren't especially complicated."

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One thing we haven't really looked at much is using a makeup sponge. I tend to think of it for gradients, that's why I love this "Carolina Blue Sky" manicure by Shanna at @polishedaway (Instagram): "I call it that because I live in NC & am a huge UNC Tarheels fan ;) I used Essie's "Bikini So Teeny" for the base (any light blue would work, of course), & use a small piece of a cosmetic sponge to dab white on to form the clouds. It's super easy, but really pretty :)"

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Easy For You Maybe! ... But What About the Rest of Us?

The thing I love about this series is the chance to show you stuff that I haven't had the chance to try. For example, Arvonka who blogs at Nails by Arvonka (blog) suggests glitter placement, which is something I haven't done yet: "When I don't have much time to do some nail art, I always go for some glitter. The placement is so easy and quick and it looks gorgeous in my opinion :)"

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One thing that hasn't been pointed out, is that what is easy for one person is not so easy for someone else. So some of these techniques might become your go-to easy nail art techniques, others might be more time consuming.

One tip that made this clear to me was from Pamela (Instagram): "Reversed glitter gradients are my go-to's. Then stamping would be a great choice since its really not time consuming. Gradients are very easy and quick when you know how to do them. Also stud placement is a great option for simple 'nail art'. But I think the winner of easy, fun and quick nail art is.. Splatter!"

You can find Pamela's splatter design here (link). It's worth the effort to take a quick look!

I've complained before about how hard splatter technique is for me, but this gorgeous design from Pamela makes me want to try again.

It's That One Technique Called...

The Nailshow (blog) submitted this fun idea for a freehand zig-zag pattern: "You only need a small paint brush and some fun colors to work with. For an even more bright manicure, use a white base colour to really make the neons pop. You basically make a chevron pattern, but work with small brush strokes horizontally next to each other. Alternate the colour every line, and immediately apply the topcoat because this will make the colours blend together and give a little bit of extra smudge! And tadaa, the neon party has appeared on your nails!"
What I like about this design is that you don't need a steady hand, and you don't have to worry if the topcoat smudges your design.

Michelle at The Lazy Laquerista (blog) had a lot of suggestions, some which have already been covered, but one great one was to add a sheer shimmery top coat. You can see that in these "nebula nails."

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Yulia of Vicerimus (blog) offered a few suggestions, which I've decided to quote in full, just because I find them very helpful:
  • Stamping. It really is easy provided that you use a quality stamper and plates. They don't have to be fancy or expensive - Bundle Moster has a few for a bargain price, as well as Cheeky, Mash etc. to name a couple of. And i swear by my silicon-made stamper. Trick for easy clean-up: cover the skin around your nail in PVA glue (or school glue), and when you finished your mani and it's dry, just wash your hands - the glue will come off along with the unwanted polish.
  • Don't limit yourself to using nail polish and acrylic paint in your nail art. Anything that paints will do, like markers, highlighters, pens etc. I used a gel pen I had back from my secondary school days in my Bayern Munchen mani (see submitted photo)
  • Opposing colors look AWESOME. Think violet/orange, blue/yellow etc.
  • Having trouble coming up with a color combination? http://colorschemedesigner.com is your friend
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I really love this design she did using gel pen, it's one technique I've been meaning to try!

Sarah Loves Glitter also offered a lot of suggestions, and surprisingly many of them were unique and hadn't be suggested by anyone else. I don't know why I didn't think of some of these: 
  • half moons are really easy to do with hole reinforcers, and you can change up an old mani by just picking complimentary colour and painting over. (also, you can wrap your tips again to prolong wear)
  • saran wrap mani over an old colour can be pretty speedy.
  • adding some leapord print or zebra stripes.
  • I love to add a coat of Spectraflair top coat to turn an existing swatch into a new holo colour!
  • I also seem to do a lot of ombres when I'm pushed for time. Not sure if they're technically nail art but you use 5 colours, so I guess that kinda counts.
  • I also have a habit of wearing my mani glossy for a day or two, then mattifying it when I get bored.
Before I wrap up this post I wanted to also thank Meg, who suggested stamping (something I've never tried), and Stephanie330 (Instagram), who suggested lava nails and plumeria flowers. Also two designs I've never tried.

If you're still reading, thank you!! You are obviously very dedicated. I just wanted to thank everyone who submitted to this small project of mine. And I'd love to hear your feedback. Would you like to see something like this again? Yeah or Nay!?

30 June 2013

From the Readers: Your Easy Nail Art Tips and Techniques, Part Two

This is a short series of posts where I take a look at some easy nail art tips and techniques sent in by readers and followers of this blog on Facebook and Instagram. Make sure to check out Part One of this series for some background info as well as more great responses!

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Hi everyone! Before I get into today's post, I'm sure you've heard over and over that Google Reader is gone tomorrow (July 1st, 2013). I'm sure everyone who uses it has probably already switched to some other reader, but I just wanted to remind or let you know the ways you can follow me. Keep in mind this doesn't effect Google Friend Connect, which for now is safe. I've added little side buttons/widgets on my blog so you can subscribe by RSS, email, or Bloglovin'. You can also follow me on Facebook, and I update that after each post. There's also Instagram and Tumblr, and while I try to keep on top of those, they don't get updated immediately like Facebook does.

...Okay, now that that's out of the way, I wanted to thank everyone for the great response to Part One of this little series. For the second part of this series I wanted to focus on glitter gradients, French tips, and skittle manis. I feel like I'm repeating myself, but I'm really amazed by the variety in the responses. Like I expected, there is a lot of overlap in terms of the techniques, but everyone has their own way of doing something. I think that was very apparent in the last post, especially with the dot manicures.

I Heart Glitter Gradients

Glitter gradients you may have guessed are my go-to easy nail art technique. I have to make a conscious effort to not do them too much and to find other ideas for nail art, mainly out of fear that my blog readers will mutiny! So I love the different approaches everyone has to this beautiful technique.

Marisa of Polish Obsession (blog) not only did a glitter gradient, but she also did a regular gradient...love it! In her words: "What I find simple to do is a gradient. Either with two colors using a makeup sponge, or by adding a glitter gradient to an old mani. The mani I'm sharing has both ;0)."

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Chantal who blogs about nails, beauty, and more at Chantal's Corner (blog) had this to say about glitter gradients: "My favourite go-to nail art is a glitter gradient, and my second is dotted nail art. I unfortunately don't do either very often, but if I'm short on time and I do want to add a little something, those 2 are my top go-to. I also use glitter gradients to cover up nail chips or shrinkage (from top coat)."

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I really love the colour combination on this one. Not only is a glitter gradient a good way to cover chips but I find that my glitter gradient manis tend to last longer in the first place. That is when you do them on the tips of the nails. I think it's the extra layer(s) of polish.

Q at Squeaky Nails (blog), had a lot of suggestions but in the end submitted a glitter gradient: "As far as techniques that don't require that much time go, I'd say go for tape. I love how quick and easy it is, and you can do so many awesome things with it! Maybe combine a few contrasting colours, or different finishes even? A matte/shiny tape manicure can look SO good! Leopard/animal prints are also a fave of mine, and really quick to do! I also love to see glitter gradients of any kind!"


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I love how delicate this is! I've been a fan of Q's blog for awhile, ever since she wrote to me and asked me to check it out. She has great pictures and not enough followers IMO. :)

Funky French Tips!


No I'm not talking about odd advice from French people. Funky French tips or a funky French manicure is when you paint the tips of your nails a different colour, or maybe you do some stamping on the tips of your nails, something that contrasts the rest of the nail. I've never tried it but these two bloggers have it down pat!


Inky from Inky Wiskers (blog) suggested a "fun chunky glitter with a double line French tip in colors that go with the glitter."


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I love this idea, and I also love the pink polish she used as a base...wow! :)

Christine who blogs at Polished Marvels (blog) also suggested French tips in either a contrasting colour or with glitter. I've been following Christine's blog for awhile and I always love her manis (and she has the best collection), so I was happy when she submitted this very classic design.


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Another Favourite - The Skittle Mani

A skittle mani is when all nails are different but there's something to tie them together, maybe a common colour, or a similar design. They can be as intricate or as easy as you want, but I think that the technique (if you can call it that), lends itself to some very easy nail art. 


Reader Shelby G doesn't have a blog but is wanting to start one later in the year. I think she's off to a good start with this really nice design. She also offered the following advice: "Skittles manicures are so easy and look impressive. I've been using black, white, and one additional color for the past couple days and they are so easy! Obviously very minimal skills are needed, you only need a good aesthetic and a steady hand. Add a couple studs and you've got a work of art :-) "


Photo credit: Shelby G

Reader Mnemo also had a similar suggestion, pointing out the skittlette technique ala Marta of Chit Chat Nails. If you are not familiar with Marta's skittlettes, then you should really check out her how-to post (link).

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So stay tuned for one more "From the Readers" post. What did you think of today's designs and suggestions? Do you find these posts helpful?

27 June 2013

From the Readers: Your Easy Nail Art Tips and Techniques, Part One

Hi everyone! A few days ago, I appealed to you as readers and followers of this blog to send me your easy nail art tips and techniques. When I first came up with the idea, I thought that I'd leave the survey up for some time - maybe a month or so - but after just a few days, you gave me more than enough content! So much that I've had to break the responses up into three blog posts so that I don't overwhelm everyone with one or two *massive* posts. 

I received so many interesting and unique ideas that I wanted to give everyone a space on this blog. Also many respondents decided to submit photos of their own work, and let me tell you, I love all the beautiful nail art everyone has done! Before I get into the responses, I want to point out that I received photos from people at all different skill levels. Some have been photographing their nail art for quite some time, others are very new, so please be supportive of everyone regardless of skill level, please and thanks. :)

Note: the links to the original blog post are in the caption of each photo. Make sure to check out these awesome bloggers and Instagramers!

What is nail art?

I think this question is a good place to start. Anything beyond a straightforward manicure can be considered nail art. So by definition nail art doesn't have to be something complicated. 

Christa at Possibly Polished (blog) pointed this out with her response: "A lot of my readers always ask for "easy nail art tips and tutorials", but I always wonder: What does "nail art" mean to you? I did this Tips on Tuesday post because I want my readers to know that nail art doesn't have to have fancy tools or a steady hand, nail art can simply be as pretty as a glitter accent nail and it looks so cute and fun! And it is quick and easy!"


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How much will it cost?

Nail art doesn't have to cost a lot, and it's possible to get away with minimal tools. But many who are new to nail art may think that they need lots of fancy, specialized tools. 

That's why I loved Novita's response, she blogs at Colors Frenzy (blog) and she gave a list of suggestions organized by cost: "All of these are what I think can be considered as quick and (moderately) easy nail art: (1) Nail art with minimal tool: dotticure, saran wrap. You don't need to own dotting tool to do this, good for beginner who doesn't want to invest in any nail art tool yet. (2) Cheap budget nail art: gradient, tape mani. All you need are just make up sponge (which most ladies probably already have) and striping tape. (3) Medium budget: stamping."


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I really love this two colour gradient that she did. Once you try them a few times, gradients can be very easy!

Dots, dots, dots!

Many of you suggested dotticures as an easy nail art technique. I couldn't agree more. The interesting thing was that everyone had their own unique take on the dot manicure!

Brijit of Brijit's Digits (blog) - I love that name! - responded: "Dotticures! Anyone can do them, and they're easy to do with your non-dominant hand, too, especially if you do a bit of a random placement :) Don't be tempted to pay for a super expensive dotting tool from a make-up brand - you can get very cheap unbranded ones, or even use a toothpick or the end of a bobby pin."


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I tend to gravitate towards gradient type designs when it comes to dots, so I really like how she did this one.

Linalinux (Instagram) has a really unique take on dotticures. She has done a number of designs that look advanced, but are not too difficult for someone who has done a few dot manicures before.


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Paulina of Paulina's Passions (blog) responded: "If I need a quick fix I usually got for simple dotticures or glitter gradients. If I have a bit more time, I usually do some floral :)"


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I really love this dot manicure. It's a bit more intricate, but would be easy for someone who already has some experience with a dotting tool.

Ro from It's Just a HOBBY! (blog) also had a similar response: "Dotticures are always the fastest/easiest nail art. When I'm in a hurry, dots are my go-to tools."


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Again, I really love her own unique take on the dot manicure, and I especially love the layering of orange and blue dots.

Sandwich anyone?

Despite the fact that I've bought several jelly polishes for the specific purpose of doing a jelly sandwich, I have yet to try the technique. A jelly sandwich is basically when you layer a glitter polish (or stamping, or dots) between layers of sheer or jelly finish polish.

Amy at McPolish (Instagram) explained: "My favorite easy, go-to nail art is the "jelly sandwich". It may not be super artistic, but if I am at a loss of ideas for nail art, this ones is easy and looks more interesting than just putting glitter polish over a base coat. You do need jelly or sheer polish to make it work, but you can use any glitter you want. I have even used the jelly sandwich technique over stamping or dotting to give more depth. The basic formula is to paint your nails with alternating layers of jelly and glitter polish until you are happy with the color. I typically do 2 coats of jelly, 1 coat of glitter and 1 coat of jelly on top. Using a fast dry top coat with help all these layers dry more quickly."

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Edit: When this blog post was originally published I wasn't able to include Amy's photo, but thankfully she emailed me a jpeg! Thanks Amy!

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Whew! That was a lot but I hope you can see why I wanted to include everyone's responses. Make sure you check out parts two and three, hopefully I'll be able to put them together this week! There's more great ideas to come! :D

Tell me: What is your go-to easy nail art technique? And what do you think of this idea of reader-generated posts? I love the idea, maybe not every month, but once every 2-3 months.
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