Sunday, October 23, 2011

Failed attempt: Halloween Gradient Nail

Hey everyone! Today I thought I’d cross off one of my nail designs off my want to try list, and show you guys a step-by-step look at my very first attempt. Unfortunately, I made really bad colour decisions, but this post will still give you an idea of the effects you can achieve with this technique… Why mess up your own nails when you could be learning from my mistakes?

But first, because I like to brag, I want to show off how long my nails have gotten, without any polish covering them up:


I know they aren’t very long compared to a lot of girls, but this is probably the longest my nails have ever been, and I really have to thank OPI Nail Envy, partly, because it really has helped make my nails much much stronger.

So, anyways, the polishes I’m going to use for this look are Rimmel Lyrca Wear 10 +Minerals in Black Satin, Sephora by OPI in Caliente Coral, and The Face Shop in OR202, and the top coat I’m going to use is Clinique All-in-One Base & Top Coat:


I started by covering my nails in a coat of the black, and let it dry:


Next, I painted just the tip in the OPI:


And then, thinly painted about halfway down my nail with the Face Shop:


And finally, added one more thin coat of the Face Shop polish about 75% of the way down my nails, so that there is still uncovered black at the base, let dry, and finished it with a top coat. The final product:


It’s a little messy, but I’m still pretty pleased with the results. I hadn’t seen any videos where someone used black as their base, so I wasn’t entirely sure how well it would work.


  • If you’re using black as a base like I did, make sure you don’t spend too long in each coat of colour over top. I did this on both my thumbs, and it results in a weird swirling of the black and colour, as the base colour gets wetter and the two mix.
  • Be sure to let each coat dry before you move on to the next one. This is especially important for the base colour coat, and also for the first layer of your gradient, but should also be kept in mind for every other coat. One of the main issues with my gradient mani was that it took way too long to dry, and I messed it up because the top seemed dry, but it was still wet lower down.
  • I would suggest not using black as a base, or at least not trying to mix orange and black.
  • Try to get nice, even line on every coat, so that it doesn’t end up looking messy, like mine.

Do you like the idea of me posting my failed nail art attempts, as well as my successful ones, so you can learn from them, or should I pretend I’m always awesome for the sake of this blog? Let me know what you think!

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