The body is a canvas, and it seems we are always trying to deck it up with something beautiful. Be it buying the best dresses, or having perfectly matched accessories- we do not leave a stone unturned to make sure we look good. Maybe not every single day of the year, but once in a while we make all the efforts to be the best version of ourselves by virtues of appearance. Nail art becomes a part of these efforts, turning out to be real art if done well. And let’s not forget all the appreciation and the wow’s that come your way when you have a perfectly designed nail.
But often, this can be a tedious, even costly, job. Nails aren’t the biggest of things admitted. It can be hard to make too complicated designs. Sometimes you can indeed get pretty designs done from parlours, but the cost is pretty high. It is often not possible to afford that cost. So what to do?
Instead of spending tons of time or money or both behind getting the awesome nail art done, try out simple ideas that will turn out to be wonderful, yet are easy as any simple nail painting process. Here are some ideas you can try out!
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The Loofah Hack
A loofah is great for making impressions because of the pattern it has. The perfect crisscross acts as a great stencil.
Choose two colours, preferable a dark and a light shade. The shades should go well with each other. Apply the lighter shade first as a base. Let it dry. Take the loofah. You can either cut out small pieces if it’s an old one. Place it over your nail. Then take the darker shade of nail polish, apply it on a sponge and gently dab on the nail. Keep it on one side, so that you get the effect of a gradient.
Remove the loofah gently, and you get a cool looking mesh pattern gradually fading. To make sure the nail paint doesn’t stay on your fingers around the nails as well, put a coat of liquid glue and let that dry. Peel it off once the final product is ready. To seal it in place, apply a layer of transparent nail polish once everything is dry.
The Tape Hack
This one is perhaps the easiest hack out there, but the results can be crazy good! All you need is cello tape to add the quirk. The patterns are all subject to your whims.
Take two shades that contrast each other. You can try out glittery nail polish that matches the base colour. First paint your nails with the base colour and let it dry. In this hack, it is very important that the base colour is dry. Otherwise some of it can come off when you peel the tape off your finger. Once its adequately dry, plan out the pattern you’d like, and paste the tape. It’s best to use small pieces. Make sure the tape is stuck down well on your nails, all along the curve of your nail and your finger. Then take the second shade of nail polish and apply it. Gently take the tape off, and you get a clean edge pattern nail paint.
You can even use more than two shades of nail polish, using the tape multiple times to form layers. Every time you apply the new layer of patterns, make sure the paint underneath is completely dry. In the end, just put some transparent nail polish to seal it in place, as always.
Dental Floss Hack
For this one, once again you’ll need two matching shades of paint. This time, make sure the base colour stands out, as the top coat will be dominating the nail.
First apply the base coat. Let it dry well. Then the process is very easy. Tear off a long strip of dental floss (not too long though) and twine it around your finger. Do it tightly so that it stays in place. Once you have secured the floss in place, apply the second nail polish. Then slowly and very carefully untwine the floss, without disrupting the top coat.
Once it comes off, you have a cool stripped design on your nail, perfectly resembling a t-shirt. Try it out with your stripped tees to make a cool combo. Also, don’t forget the protective layer of transparent nail polish!
Make your own stencil out of a chewing gum wrapper. It does not have to be too elaborate or complicated. Perhaps try out a simple heart shape.
Take the wrapper of a chewing gum and fold it in half. Cut out the shape of half a heart and unfold the paper, revealing the complete heart shape. Make sure it’s small, because too big, it might not look good on the nails. Paint your nail with a light shade of nail polish and let it dry well. Then place your DIY stencil on your nail. Secure it well on your nail and make sure it does not move. If needed, ask a friend to help. Now take a darker, corresponding shade of nail polish, and paint over the cut out.
Slowly peel off your stencil to reveal the design on your nail. You can use the stencil multiple times to repeat the same design, perhaps even with different shades. Apply the transparent coat at the end.
Band Aid Stencil
This one is a popular hack because the net result is not just cool, it is also very popular, and often parlours to it for a much higher cost.
The base can be transparent nail polish in this case, or any shade you want. But it’s best if it is a light and more natural shade. Take the band aid and paste it on your nail, a little below the top of the nail, right from where the skin starts beneath your nail. You will see, the arc of the band aid runs almost parallel to the arc of the top of your nail. Now take another shade, for example, white, and paint the exposed part. Now peel off the band aid to reveal a clean edge. Finally top it with the transparent nail polish.
Bobby Pin Polka Dots
This one also closely resembles cloth prints, and would be perfect for your tees or dresses. It is simple and sweet.
Take a light colour for base, and a dark colour for the dots. Make sure they go well together. You can take different shades of the same colour. If you want, you can use more than two shades for this one. Paint the base with the lighter colour and let it dry. Take a bobby pin and dip the round head in the darker shade of nail polish, or just put a drop of it with the brush. Gently dab the head on your nail, and you have cute circles! Add as many circles as you want and let it dry. Apply the transparent nail polish in the end.
The Sponge Scenery
Are you a fan of galaxies or sunsets? Or do you simply love a hoard of colours on your nails playing around. Then you can simply use a sponge to make a beautiful gradient of colours.
If you are trying out the galaxy, use light blue and dark blue nail polish for base. First apply a transparent layer and let it dry. Put some PVA glue around the nail as well. Now take a clean sponge. First put a line of light blue nail polish, and right beneath it, the dark blue one. Dab it slowly on your nail, the lighter colour on top and the darker one at the bottom. You can add some purple as well right at the bottom line. Let it dry. Sprinkle some white nail polish for stars. Once everything is dry and set, apply another layer of transparent nail polish. The process is same for sunset scenery as well, only without the white sprinkles.
Painting Nails without Nail Polish!
This one is not just cheap, but allows you a lot of opportunity. Missing on a variety of shades of nail polish? Can’t find the shade you wanted to wear? Has your nail polish dried up? And you don’t have the time to get more nail polish!
These emergencies call for some creativity. Take some water colour (yes!), preferably liquid colour. Paint your nails whatever way you want. You can simply choose one colour; you can mix various colours; you can try out any of the above mentioned hacks as well. Once you are done, make sure it dries up well. It is best to use acrylic pain, or ones that do not dissolve once dry. Apply two coats of transparent nail polish over the colours. Now they’re water proof and much more long-lasting. This one can save you in urgent cases.
No Water Colour either? Let Your Make Up Help Your Nails!
This one can even get you a matte affect. All you need is transparent nail polish and eye shadow.
Take a little amount of the eye shadow; crush it down to a fine powder. This one can be used to put in good use broken or almost exhausted eye shadow. Then put some of the transparent nail polish and mix thoroughly. You can use a toothpick if you don’t have the necessary tools. Adjust the amount of transparent nail polish to keep the mix smooth. Apply it to your nails, and top it with another layer of top coat once it’s dry.
Admit is, nails can enhance your look greatly if done well. Take the time to choose the right shades, ones that not only match with each other, but also with your clothing. Choose a design that goes with your style. Most importantly, always take care of your nails so that they look good in any design. Shape them regularly and make sure all the nails are of even size. In the end, it’s about the look that decides the outcome.