Thursday, April 25, 2013

Kaleidoscope Manicure Tutorial

Kaleidoscope Manicure Tutorial

I've been super obsessed with digital and kaleidoscope prints for a year or so and the recent influx of these prints to the mass market hasn't exactly helped with this fascination. One day it dawned on me that I could totally transfer this print to my nails. So I did it!

This manicure happened to be what I was wearing at Lucky FABB and it was a big hit; I had many requests for a tutorial on just exactly how I did it. It wasn't quick and it wasn't easy, but it turned out to be by far one of my favorite manicures. EVER. So I did it again just so I could share how it's done with you! Read on to see exactly how I did it.

My #luckyfabb mani? #diy mirrored print nail wraps. #notd #nailart #nailpolish #nailstagram #nailsofinstagram #instamani

I knew I wouldn't be able to simply paint it on my nails so I did some research on how to make my own nail strips. After a bit of web browsing, I decided on my technique. I'm not sure if any of this is the best way to do it, but I'm done it twice now and it's worked well each time. To get this look, first gather all the necessary supplies
  • Plastic zip baggie
  • Sharpie
  • Clear nail polish
  • A base color
  • Assorted polish for the kaleidoscope design
  • Nail art brush or dotting tool
  • Tweezers
  • Nail file
  • Cuticle nippers or small scissors/clippers

Start out with two coats of your base color.  Once the base dries, cut the plastic bag at the seams (you really only need one side of the bag) and put it on top of your hand. Use the Sharpie to trace a rough outline of the shape of each nail; there is no need to be exact with this you just want to be close. After flipping the bag over to the non-Sharpie side (you don't want the black to become a part of your design!), paint a coat of clear polish over each nail shape, taking care to cover the entire space to the outside of the black lines.

When the clear polish dries, take a nail art brush or dotting tool and get creative. Paint small, floral-like designs on top of the clear polish. In between each color, fold the bag in half down the middle of the black outline. With each new color, comes another fold down the middle and be sure to lightly tap or press with your finger to transfer the design. If the design sticks to itself, use a pair of tweezers to gently pull the two halves apart and lay the strip flat. For the best overall outcome, try and make each nail design a little different.

Once your ten mini masterpieces are all dry, it's time to lift them off the plastic backing. Some may have fallen off while you were working on other nail strips and that's okay. Others will be easy to pick up with your fingers or a pair of tweezers. For the ones that need a bit more convincing, I found that gently running your finger nail along the underside of the the bag until the edges lift (demonstrated in the video starting at 1:47). When peeling off the strips off the plastic, be gentle so you don't tear it!

You're in the home stretch now. Get your first nail tacky by painting a coat of either your base coat or clear; it shouldn't really matter which. Let it dry for 10-15 seconds and then place your handmade nail strip on top of the nail and carefully press it down flat across the surface of the nail. Use your nail file to file down against the end of the nail. Use the clippers to carefully remove the excess around the rest of the nail. Repeat on each nail and finish up with a top coat to seal it all down.

Then you're done! Now check out highlights of my technique in this video!

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The colors used are as follows:

And the finished product once again! If you try this, I'd really love to see how it turns out!

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Ali Cat said...

Great tutorial. Really clear and easy to replicate.

Gotham Polish said...

I love this! Have a great weekend Adiel :)

Cara Northcutt said...

I definitely need to try this. Love the outcome!

xx Cara