Nail polish blogs for the dexterously challenged t-rex.
September 15, 2015 7:20 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for blogs or youtube channels that feature nail designs in the intermediate skill level range. On a scale of 1 to 10 I am looking for 5-6.

Most of what I find on the internet is either really high level detailed art or things that rely on being able to draw straight lines (lol wat) or boring (look at this lovely single color shade from this here $18 bottle). Or just pictures of a finished product with no explanation of how they got that way (I'm looking at you, pintrest). I love playing with nail polish, but questionable skill level aside, I'm just flat out not going to spend more than an hour on any particular design and I'm ok with that.

My goal in this is to find interesting color combinations, simple but unusual techniques, and something just a shade of complexity up from layering a glitter over the top of your regular manicure.

You know how you can do an ombre effect by using a sponge to dab on polish colors? That is exactly the kind of thing I'm looking for.

Blogs, youtube channels, or even just links to specific posts you're aware of would be fantastic.

Yes, I'm familiar with r/redditlaqueristas and water marbling.

posted by phunniemee to Grab Bag (15 answers total) 26 users marked this as a favorite
You might like The Nailasaurus -- she has a few tutorials.
posted by supermassive at 7:32 AM on September 15, 2015

Drama Queen Nails and Nail Nerd are great. And I like these tutorials on how to make DIY nail transfers/decals with parchment paper.
posted by divined by radio at 7:58 AM on September 15, 2015

XOVain might have some tutorials around that skill level.
posted by kinddieserzeit at 8:00 AM on September 15, 2015

Not a blog, but a hint for those straight lines: cut scotch tape in little strips and lay it down on your nail. Paint over it, and boom! Straight line. Peel up the tape carefully when the polish is 90% dry.
posted by stoneweaver at 8:03 AM on September 15, 2015 [1 favorite]

Seconding Nail Nerd. I know you said you already know of r/RedditLaqueristas, but you might find this curated list of tutorials from the sub helpful.
posted by rachaelfaith at 8:03 AM on September 15, 2015

You know about water marbling, but did you know you can leave the polish to dry on the water for a few min and then pick it up as a sheet to apply to your nail? way less messy.
Also, if you lay down a color, let it dry, then do a clear top coat and put a few drops of another color on while the top coat is wet, you can drag it around with a toothpick or pen and create pretty marbling/designs as well.
Here's a video (loud annoying music- mute it!) that shows that and more.
posted by rmless at 8:09 AM on September 15, 2015

Also, if you want to make designs and then transfer to your nails, you could get one of these mats, which make it easier because you can concentrate and work on a flat surface and not worry about your non-dominant hand etc
posted by rmless at 8:23 AM on September 15, 2015

I've tried painting decals onto plastic before but it's all fucked up horribly. I had never heard about the parchment paper thing before. This is awesome.
posted by phunniemee at 6:38 PM on September 15, 2015

In addition to the Nailasaurus, check out Nailstorming, Yagala S, and Simplichic on YouTube. Lots of good stuff there. Sveta Sanders is a wizard - her Instagram is very inspiring.

If you don't want to shell out for the Uber Chic mat, a silicone baking mat will do in a pinch. I picked one up at the dollar store.

Have you looked into nail stamping?
posted by Aunt Slappy at 7:53 PM on September 15, 2015 [1 favorite]

Really, check out nail stamping. With just a few tutorials from YouTube I am now able to make my nails look like something you'd pay good money for. Even my right hand, and I'm as far from ambidextrous as it gets.
posted by TooFewShoes at 12:31 AM on September 16, 2015

Does anybody have a low cost stamping system they'd recommend?
posted by phunniemee at 7:07 AM on September 16, 2015

i like miss jen fabulous:

she has a lot of videos that are specifically geared at people who are nail art newbies.
posted by mermaiden at 1:42 PM on September 16, 2015

I actually just bought a stamping set. I got this stamper and these plates, which are a random assortment, NOT necessarily what's shown on the product image page. The plates were a little cheaper when I bought them, so it was like $20, all up, but I figured it was a relatively low-cost entrypoint.

I'm sort of a disaster a lot of the time, but have stamped my nails three times and gotten nothing but compliments. The best part is that it takes hardly any time at all--putting on the base coat takes however long that usually takes you, but the stamping only adds maybe ten minutes, and they're so thin that they dry in seconds.
posted by MeghanC at 4:50 PM on September 16, 2015

Ooh, check out Jaunty Juli, Mr. Candiipants, Chalkboard Nails, Wondrously Polished, Chelsea King, and Fat Junkie Nail Art. All have some good nail art tutorials that are pretty beginner-friendly.

I recommend against Miss Jen Fabulous. Her tutorials are decent, but she's pretty well known in the nail art community for ripping off other artists' designs, not crediting them, and deleting any comments pointing out the original source material.

Also, shameless self-plug: I'm a nail artist and you can find my tutorials here. Some are for more complicated stuff, but others (this one?) are probably close to what you're looking for.
posted by bookish at 5:31 PM on September 16, 2015 [3 favorites]

I have stamped my nails! They came out surprisingly well for my first ever go at stamping like, every single one of them is off center and several are a bit smudgy and I even got a compliment on them today. SO COOL, SO EASY.

I also tried the parchment paper nail stickers and boogered things up pretty bad so those will definitely need another go at some point in the future.
posted by phunniemee at 5:55 PM on September 22, 2015 [3 favorites]

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