Nail art can be a beautiful and stylish addition to a manicure that doesnt have to be expensive.
These days a variety of products are available to enable you to decorate your nails at home.
These consist of stainless steel disks with designs etched in them that can be transferred onto the nail. A special thick nail polish (regular polish doesnt work properly) is used to cover the design and the excess scraped off with a flat tool. The design can then be picked up with a stamping tool and applied to the nail. The designs available are extensive, from patterns to animal print to flowers to cartoons, and range in size so they can be applied to the whole nail, a small area of it, or as a patterned French tip. Stamping allows the nails to be decorated with very intricate designs for an impressive look with minimal skill and effort needed. The most popular brand of stamps is Konad and these are widely available online.
Nail Art Pens
Nail art pens consist of either a fine tipped pen or a squeezable bottle with a fine nib. They are available in a wide range of colors and the polish can simply be applied on top of a dry coat of nail polish. The designs that can be created are limited only by the imagination, however this does require steady hands and some patience in order to hand draw each nail individually. Nail art pens are manufactured by many nail polish companies such as Sally Hansen and Migi and can be found online or in stores.
Crackle or Shatter
This top coat has come back into fashion lately with OPI as the latest company to produce their version. Most only produce black, but for a wide range of colors try the Mia Secret range. Crackle polish is applied over a dry base. Its best to use a contrasting color to get the most impressive effect and it is very important to wait for this to completely dry. A thin layer of crackle polish can be applied over the top, which will produce a crackled effect as it dries. It works because it contains an incompatible solvent which makes it dry unevenly leading to cracks. This does however give a poor finish so it is a good idea to use a clear top coat for a smooth finish and to make it last as long as possible. The thickness of the crackle coat can be varied to get the desired look, and an attractive leopard print effect can be produced using an orange base coat with black crackle over it.
This look involves a gradient from dark to light and while often done in salons with an airbrush, can be done