B-Girl Style

sm-17-august-2016

This is Gelish B-Girl Style, which is a beautiful pink that reminds me of bubble gum.  On the two middle fingers I used Born Pretty Store Mirror Powder in silver.  It was supposed to have a mirror-like finish, but it didn’t really work for me.  As you can see, it looks like packed glitter rather than chrome, and it left pigment in my Top It Off brush which then transferred to other nails.

This photo was taken a few days after application and you can see it’s already beginning to chip.  I was ready for a new manicure by this point.

With all that said, I do plan to give it another try. I only paid $2 for the powder, so it is worth it even if it only lasts for a couple days.  I also need to practice getting the chrome finish and cleaning off the leftover pigment before top-coating.

On a side note – are you like me, wondering what “B-Girl” even means?  I guess I’m old, but I had to look it up. In this case the B stands for “break”, as in break dancing.  I kinda assumed that’s what it meant, but needed confirmation from the ultimate authority (the internet).

Blackboard Nails

chalkboard nails

For these nails I used Gelish Black Shadow, and stamped on them with white Konad special stamping polish and Bundle monster stamping plates 311, 401, 409 and 411. On some of the nails I used a 2 coats of Gelish A Pinch of Pepper, although the black glitter is not visible.  Finally, to give the nails the “blackboard” look, I used Gelish Matte Top it Off.

Feather Nail Art

S&M-10-June-2014

On the feature nail the base color is Gelish Tassles, and on the other four nails of each hand it’s Want to Cuddle?.  The feathers are embedded in the Top It Off, 2 coats.  I got the feather from the Born Pretty Store.  After the feather was lying flat and cured, I added a little Am I Making you Gelish? at the base of the nails, and then added medium and small rhinestones.  The issue I had was (once again) the deep curve of my natural nail preventing the 3D nail art from lying flat. I had  to pull the feather pretty far forward on the nail, leaving a gap at the lunula area, which I decided would be best filled in with sparkly things!!

S&M-10-June-2014-B

Night Reflection

Night Reflection

For this design I used two coats of Gelish “Night Reflection” and “The Great Googly Moogly” from the Aurora Collection. Then, I stamped with the special black Konad stamping polish and Bundle Monster plate BM-314.  (Yes, you can stamp the ring, as well!) The dark purple makes a great contrast with bright green glitter.  The ring and nail art are even more impressive in person!

If you’d like more information about how to make your own nail polish jewelry, try Sweeter Lemon or Rebecca Likes Nails for a tutorial.  I’ve read that you can find the supplies to make your jewelry at Etsy.com, but I purchased all mine at Fire Mountain Gems and at our local Michael’s craft store.

Wear test – Gelish Top it off vs. RNP top coat

top coat wear-test

In response to a co-worker’s question about 1) using gel top coat on RNP and 2) the wear time of that vs. RNP top coat, I conducted a wear test on these products for one week.  Here are the results, and they’re pretty much what you would have expected…

Products:

On my right hand (left hand in the above pic)-

  • Beauty Secrets base coat (Sally Beauty Brand)
  • OPI “You’re A Doll” on pink, ring and pointer fingers, stamped (I can’t remember what I used to stamp)
  • OPI “Brand New Skates” on the middle finger
  • Kiss Colors “Soft Gray” topped with China Glaze “Haute Metal” on the thumbs
  • Gelish Top it Off

On my left hand-

Method:

I gave myself a manicure with RNP per the above and allowed it to dry overnight.  Approximately 10-12 hours after the manicure I applied RNP top coat to the nails on my left hand and gel top coat to the right. As you can see, I experienced no crinkling or warping of the RNP under the gel top coat.  I believe application was successful because I allowed the RNP to cure sufficiently before applying gel top coat. I did not do any maintenance to the manicure for 1 week. Note that, early on in the week, I had an unfortunate run-in with a Tupperware container and bent but did not break the pointer and middle finger nails on the right hand. This caused some chipping on the right middle fingernail that otherwise would not have been so pronounced.  Also, I broke the Tupperware container lid!

Results:

As you can see, wear was slightly worse on the nail tips on my right hand, though there was tip wear on both hands. This was to be expected since I am right-handed.  Overall both manicures were durable with minimal tip wear for the 7 day test period.  Gel top coat appears to have performed only slightly better than regular top coat would over RNP.

Final thoughts:

To answer the questions posed at the beginning of this post: 1) Yes, you can apply gel top coat over and RNP manicure, provided that you allow the RNP to cure for several hours first. 2) Gel top coat performed slightly better than regular top coat did (especially if you take into consideration the Tupperware container incident). Gel top coat is also more flexible than RNP top coat.  I wonder if the chipping caused by the incident would have been as bad if the whole manicure on my right hand had been gel.

If you don’t want to stop using RNP or are interested in getting slightly longer wear with your RNP, I would recommend trying a gel top coat with it.  However, you can’t expect it to be as good as the wear time you would get with a gel manicure.  For that reason I would suggest that, if you’re not heavily invested in RNP, start transitioning to gel polish… unless you like changing your RNP every couple days to match your outfit, mood, occasion, etc.  If you’re looking for 1 week+ wear time, gel is the way to go.

Precious Metals

This is Dashing Diva Design FX in Precious Metals on the middle nails + China Glaze Magnetix II Gold Fusion on the others. I used the grid pattern on Magnetix II magnet.

I’m conducting a wear test on the Dashing Diva Design FX, and this is day 1.  On day 1 I did some typing, light cleaning, and cooking/cleanup.  Dashing Diva claims that you can get up to two weeks of wear from these if you use their gel topcoat. I applied the decal then one coat of Gelish Foundation followed by one coat of Top It Off, and I want to see if I can get through at least a week with these.