All posts for the month March, 2015

Easy Tie-Dye Nails

Published March 30, 2015 by beginnersnailart

Hi everyone. This week’s design is a fun and easy design that was inspired by HelloMaphie. You can find her original design here: 

 I’ve done this design using polish but it’s a great option for gel polishes too. So if you’ve picked yourself up a Technic gel polish kit you can recreate this design with the gel polishes, just skip the base and topcoat and remember to clean up around your nails with acetone polish remover before curing. 

 All you’ll need are two polishes of your choice and a fan brush. I’ve used Technic’s Party Brights in Bora Bora Beach and Flamingo.

  Step 1: once your base coat dries, paint half your nail with a thick coat of one polish and the other half with the other polish.

  Step 2: while the polishes are still wet, start at the cuticle and gently move the fan brush back and forth while moving toward the tip of your nail. Repeat for each nail and let it dry for 10 minutes.

  Step 3: repeat steps 1 and 2 on each nail to make the colours brighter and more opaque.

  Step 4: while waiting on the polish to dry, use a thin brush and polish remover to clean the excess polish of your skin.

  Step 5: once the polish is dry, do any final cleanup needed, apply topcoat and you’re done!

I hope you liked this bright and easy design and give it a try with your favourite colours. 

Thanks for looking, 

Kirsteen x


Ombre Leopard Print

Published March 23, 2015 by beginnersnailart

Hi everyone. This week’s design was inspired by a bright coloured, leopard print Vans backpack I saw someone with not long ago. I loved the combination of the print over these colours and had to try it out.

Unfortunately I couldn’t find a picture of the bag anywhere, or I would have added it here. If you want to recreate this look you’ll need a white base polish, a purple, pink and mint for the ombre, a black for the leopard print, a makeup sponge, and a fine dotting tool (or toothpick).

Here I’ve used White, Bora Bora Beach, Candyfloss, Pool Party and Jet Black.

Step 1: apply two coats of white polish, then a layer of topcoat and let it dry (the topcoat will stop the sponge lifting the white polish).

Step 2: paint the three colours onto your sponge (purple at the base, mint at the tip) and dab it over your nails: remember to reapply polish after each nail.

Step 3: repeat Step 2 another one or two times, until the colours are opaque and bright (while its drying use a cotton bud and polish remover to clean up the mess).

Step 4: dip your dotting tool/toothpick into your black polish and paint on the leopard print.

Step 5: wait at least 10 minutes for the black to dry, clean up around your nails and apply your topcoat.

I really hope you liked this design and give it a try. If you’d like some extra hints and tips for ombre and leopard print, see my Back To Basics post.

Thanks for looking,

Kirsteen x

Washed-Out Neon Nails

Published March 16, 2015 by beginnersnailart

Hi everyone. The cold and wet weather is still hanging around, so I needed to brighten things up. I didn’t want to go full blown neon just yet, but this washed-out effect is the right balance between bright and subtle. It’s a perfect mani to take you from winter to spring, and the best part is there’s no tools needed (so it’s quick too!).All you need to recreate the effect is the polish brushes. For polishes you’ll need a white base (to make the colours stand out better), and between three to five bright pastel polishes of your choice. I decided to use five polishes.

All the polishes I used are from Technic. I used White for my base; and for the pastels I’ve used are their Pretty Pastels in Pool Party, Mr Blue Sky, Picnic, Bubblegum and Canary.

Step 1: apply two coats of your white polish and let it dry.

Step 2: take your first colour and wipe most of the polish off the brush on the side of the bottle.

Step 3: paint what’s left on the polish brush onto patches of each nail (if it’s too pale add more polish a little at a time until you feel it’s bright enough).

Step 4: repeat steps 2 and 3 with each of your colours, making sure there’s no white showing through.

Step 5: clean up around your nails, then apply a thick layer of topcoat to blur the colours, and your done!

I’ve left my nails like this, but this would look great under black crackle polish, animal print, polka dots or stamping.

I hope you liked this design, thanks for looking!

Kirsteen x

Dry Marble Nails

Published March 9, 2015 by beginnersnailart

Hi everyone. This week’s design is a lovely marble design, no water needed. I have done water marble a few times, and as much as I love the result it’s really time consuming and messy. This dry marble is quick and mess is minimal.

You can use any colour combination you like and the polishes always blend well. You’ll need a light coloured polish, one or two medium polishes, a dark polish, and ten small squares of cling film (plastic wrap). I’ve seen a lot of people do dry marble by swirling the polish with a toothpick or thin brush, but I prefer this method as the cling film lifts off the excess polish so it doesn’t take forever to dry.

I’ve used three polishes today, Pool Party, Seashell and Sea Foam, all by Technic (and of course the cling film). I wouldn’t recommend using any more than four polishes or it will look muddy.

Step 1: after your base coat dries, paint your nails with one coat of your light polish and let it dry.

Step 2: place blobs of each polish on your nail, lightest to darkest; lay a peice of cling film over your nail and pat it down; gently peel it off and scrape the polish off your skin with a toothpick (this step works best if you go one nail at a time).

Step 3: repeat Step 2 for each nail and they’ll look something this this. Once they’re all done use a cotton bud or thin brush and nail polish remover to clean any remaining polish off your skin.

Step 4: once you’ve cleaned up, apply your topcoat and your done!

As I said above you can use any colours you like, but I opted for green and gold since St Patrick’s day is next week. I really hope you liked this design and give it a try.

Thanks for looking,

Kirsteen x

Review: Technic Pro One Step Gel Nail Polish Starter Kit

Published March 8, 2015 by beginnersnailart

Hi everyone. A couple of weeks ago Technic sent me out their new gel nail polish kit to try out. I was really excited as I’m a gel polish virgin. I’ve never had any before and I’ve never even been to have it done in a salon either. So, as you can imagine I couldn’t wait to try it!

I was sent the starter kit and the current range of 12 gel polishes. The kit itself is £59.99 and the polishes are £4.99 each. If your interested you can check it out and buy here:

Here’s the kit, in which you get an LED lamp, 60ml bottle of nail cleanser, 60ml bottle of gel polish remover, 10 foil wraps, a packet of cotton strips, a small file, cuticle stick and two of the Technic Pro Gel Nail Polishes.

Here are all 12 polishes, with names. My favourite has to be Midnight Shimmer. It’s a gorgeous dark blue with a hint of shimmer through it. All 12 only need two coats and are well pigmented.

First thing I checked out was the value for money side of it. I decided to compare it to Shellac, as this is probably the most popular gel polish brand. After a quick internet search i priced the Shellac kits at anywhere between £85 and £145. The Shellac polish on their own were priced £12 to £15. So the Technic kit is definitely great value for money.

Time and difficulty were next (difficulty especially, as this was my first attempt). Time wise it’s great too. The curing time is 60 seconds, you only need too coats of each polish and there’s no base or topcoat needed. Difficulty checks out too. The polishes are a little thicker than normal nail polishes, but there not so thick that they’re hard to apply. they also apply really evenly, so no streaks!

This was my first attempt, using Coffee. As you can see I made my usual mess when applying it, but didn’t clean up before curing so it was stuck to my skin. You can see too that it’s shrinking away from the edge of my nails. This was, again, my fault. Before applying the polish you wipe your nails with the cleanser and wait 60 seconds before applying any polish. I didn’t wait at all and this was the result. I thought this would be the perfect time to test out the remover.

The kit comes with 10 foil wraps that have nail-sized cotton pads already attached. Soak the cotton in the remover and wrap the foils around your nails. Leave it for 10 minutes and the gel polish lifts off instead of dissolving like normal polish. All you do now is use the cuticle pusher to gently scrape the polish away. The kit provides enough foils for one removal. After this cotton pads and tin foil work perfectly.

The little lamp is one of my favourite things in the kit. It’s big enough to fit your hand comfortably but still compact so it doesn’t take up lots of space. As I mentioned before the polishes only need to cure for 60 seconds. Instead of having to time it yourself, press the button on top to turn it on and it turns itself off after 60 seconds.

This lovely polish is Midnight Shimmer. As I said earlier, this is my favourite polish from the range. I took this picture after curing the second coat. As you can see there’s no mess! If you’re like me and always make a mess applying polish, I found that acetone polish remover takes it right off your cuticles and skin (just remember to do it before curing the polish, not after).

This is after three days of wear, and it looks like I’ve just applied it. I was a bit concerned it would loose it’s shine with no topcoat, but it didn’t.

This is after 6 days. Again the polish was still lovely and shiney. It did start to wear away from the tips as you can see, but to test the wear I had been extra rough on my nails. There was no chipping so I could have worn it for another few days, but removed it to do my last tutorial. 

And here are my nice clean nails after removing the polish. I was really happy with how clean they were, as normally a dark blue will stain them (and my skin). The only downside I could find to this was how dry the remover made the skin around my nails, but some moisturiser and cuticle oil fixed that easily.

I hope you liked this review and give the kit a try. If you already have an LED lamp of your own, I would recommend the polishes as a cheap but good quality alternative to the more expensive brands.

Thanks for looking,

Kirsteen x

Daisy Chain Nails

Published March 2, 2015 by beginnersnailart

Hi everyone. It’s nearly spring, but it’s snowing…again. Here was me hoping it was starting to warm up a bit! So I’ve went for a cute and spring coloured daisy design to cheer myself up.

IMG_4914To recreate this design you’ll need a pastel polish for your base colour, a dark green for the daisy stems, a white, a pale yellow, a thin brush and a medium dotting tool. My pale yellow polish was a bit too pale over the white, so I mixed a drop of neon yellow with two drops of white.

IMG_4904I’ve used Pool Party for my base colour, Sea Foam for the stems, and White and Mimosa for the daisies.

IMG_4906Step 1: after your base coat dries apply two to three coats of your base colour (until opaque) and let it fully dry.

IMG_4909Step 2: dip your brush into your dark green polish and paint a thin line diagonally across your nails (alternate on each nail: bottom right to top left on one, top right to bottom left on the next and so on).

IMG_4910Step 3: with your white polish and dotting tool, paint flowers along the green lines by painting circles of five dots and fill in the middle (I’ve done three but you can do more or less depending on the length of your nails).

IMG_4912Step 4: dip your dotting tool in your pale yellow polish and place a dot in the centre of each of your flowers.

IMG_4914-0Step 5: clean up around your nails, apply your topcoat and your done!

I hope you liked this design and that its cheered you up a bit if the weather is still bad where you are.

Thanks for looking,

Kirsteen x