take deux: pastel gradient nails

Guys, I'm in love.

Well yes, with Christian, my kitties, cooking, and Big Time Rush, but besides those.
I'm in love with gradient nails. Especially these. I mean, pat on the goddamn back, Clara. These are awesome.

I used the technique outlined in my last post but with a little twist. I first did 1 coat of my base color, the light pink, then sponged a gradient of light blue to pink on top of that. It made for a flawless, smooth, perfectly transitioning gradient.

Yes, I'm proud.

I'm dreaming up all the color combos I can using this technique. Mint to lilac, orange to purple, blue to red.... I'm excited! I used:

Color Club Take Me To Your Chateau
OPI Do You Lilac It?
Essie French Affair

Damn. These photos make my heart go pitter-pat. I think I'll go change my current mani right now...


tutorial: gradient/ombre nails

Ah, such impatience the period of almost-summer and end-of-the-semester brings. Being stuck in limbo where you know your work is almost over, but you still have finals to finish. It's like waking up on a sunny morning, getting out of bed, and getting punched in the face. Yeah. Well, I'm in that period where I'll find anything to do besides study. Besides, why study now if you can study the day before the final? I retain information better that way, anyways. ;)
So when I saw a picture of a gradient manicure, I thought, "Wow! Looks time consuming! Challenge accepted!". And I did it. I've posted a lot of different color combinations of this mani on Instagram. But here's how I do it!
Gather up your cast and crew. Take the makeup sponge and run it under some water for a sec, then squeeze out the excess (preferably in a towel - it'll help it be more dry). Try to stick to 3 to 4 shades, and choose shades that will transition into one another easily. If you need help, think of ROYGBIV. And note: I like to have my lightest color be a jelly polish because I find it really blends in nicely with the natural nail. From here, apply base coat as usual.
Polishes used (L to R):
OPI Dutch Tulips
Essie Vermillionaire
Zoya Maya
China Glaze Pink Underground

Paint somewhat thin strips of each polish on the now damp sponge. Try to overlap each color slightly.

Bounce the sponge up and down on some paper. This will help take off the excess polish, and it also helps blend the colors a bit.

Then press the sponge on your nail (darkest color at the tip). Bounce it up and down a bit, like you did on the paper. It will be very sheer. If you want more a of 'stain', you could leave it at this, but I prefer bolder colors so I like to let the nail dry for a bit, and then take the sponge (without having added any more color) and continue dabbing it on my nail. So basically, I like to 'build up' the color.

Repeat steps 2-4 on all nails.

This is how your nails should look right now.

Clean up the cuticles with acetone.

Apply topcoat (it helps blend the colors even more) and you're done! Beautiful!

Thanks for looking. Check out my instagram (claralhotak) to see the other color combinations I've done!