♡ ♡ ♡ NAIL POLISH BASICS ♡ ♡ ♡
- That's like asking me what my favourite kind of kitten is... I LOVE THEM ALL. But my fav types of nail polish are holos, holo glitters, flakies, and multi-chromes. See some of my absolute fave nail polishes here!
- Are you an alien? Holo is short for holographic, which means sparkly and reflects rainbows of awesomeness and magical wonder no matter what base colour it is! Just check the holo tag on my blog to see what I mean. Chances are 80% of things I swatch are holo anyways.
- ONLINE! No, there is rarely epic nail polish sold in drug stores, sorry. For standard polish like OPI, China Glaze, Essie blah blah blah yes these are sold at drug stores but they all so basic. My favourite place to get amazing quality holo/glitter/multi-chrome/otherwise awesome nail polish from is Live Love Polish an online shop and yes they ship internationally! My kitty Menchie has her own page with her fav polishes for your quick and easy reference to the good stuff!!
♡ ♡ ♡ BASE COAT, TOP COAT ♡ ♡ ♡
- What's your favourite quick dry long-lasting top coat?
- Recently I've been loving SuperChic Lacquer's quick dry top coat! It dries super quick but is also a decent thickness and super glossy - it's great for glitter manis and for working with nail vinyls! See my Gradient Guide for tips on using a quick dry top coat before using nail vinyls and other tape.
- Essie's "Matte about you", but I haven't tried many others (just Revlon).
- Depends what I'm doing! Most of the time I use a peel off base coat since I switch my polish so often, especially when swatching. Watch a video on using a peel off base coat here. Peel off base coats aren't just great for glitter, I use them for swatching multi-chromes or other polish too and thus use minimal amounts of nail polish removal for the little pieces that are left behind!
- "Ready for Takeoff" by UNT - this base coat applies clear and dries faster than glue-based peel off base coats (e.g., DIY PVA/Elmer's glue base coats, OPI's Glitter Off), and is actually WAY BETTER at peeling off in one piece. It even peels off non-glitter regular polish! I will be making a video on it eventually, but for now just trust me :p
- "Stuck on Blu" base coat by Glisten & Glow - be sure to use the 'Fab 5 wrap' technique as explained here to keep maximize your mani wear! (see my long-lasting results here and here)
- Noneeeee!! I used to use OPI's Nail Envy but then it made my nails so hard they would snap/crack/break more easily. Read here and here on why I no longer use a nail strengthener.
♡ ♡ ♡ NAIL CARE ♡ ♡ ♡
- How do you keep your nails/cuticles/hands so awesome looking?
- In a nutshell, pure nail oil for nail strength, flexibility, and supple and tight cuticles. I apply this oil 3-8x a day, avoid water, and moisturize my hands a lot. No strengthening base coats (don't need 'em! They only make my nails too hard and prone to snapping/breaking). See my Nail Care page for more.
- Same answer as above: nail oil oil oil! Apply it 3-8x daily, avoid water, stop using strengthening base coats, and read my Nail Care page for more.
- Bliss Kiss pure nail oil from Nail Care HQ. It's one of the highest quality oils out there and a little goes a long way! My nails have never been stronger since using it.
- Read my how to grow your nails post :D
- I have no idea. But, it doesn't even matter. Watch my video on why yellow nails don't matter here.
- Things I have tried didn't really work, or they would require eating at the top layers of your nail to shed the yellow tint which is something you DO NOT want to do unless you want brittle thin breakable nails. I have come to accept that yellow nails come the the territory of polishing my nails up to dozens of times a week, no matter what base coat(s) you use.
- From edge to centre using a glass nail file from Nail Care HQ. Glass files are more efficient at filing down the nail and leave cleaner edges with lesser splits.
♡ ♡ ♡ NAIL ART THING-A-MA-JIGS ♡ ♡ ♡
|Simply Peel liquid latex barrier|
- What's that peel-off stuff you use around your nails to clean up after a gradient/stamping/watermarble?
- Watch my video review of 6 different peel-off products for messy nail art clean up!
- I always use liquid latex - there are many different brands out there that currently make it, but here's two of my faves:
- Simply Peel from Nail Care HQ: I love this one because the formula is very thick making it easy to peel off in one pull, and because it dries really quick and turns clear with glitters that sparkle when dry! Read and watch the full review here.
- Liquid Palisade by Kiesque: I love the brush in this one because it's very small and you can get it in all the crevices around the nail. It also dries very fast! The only downside is that it retails for $22USD which some aren't a fan of :\ Read and watch the full review here.
- You could try, but it will probably suck to peel it off in many gooey pieces and then have little bits of glue stuck around your cuticles that you'll have to pick out and then probably end up using a lot of acetone with an angled eyeliner brush anyway. Watch the nastiness for yourself in this video! Do it right and get the real stuff.
- A latex-free triangle cosmetics/foundation sponge. See more on how to do gradients on my Gradient Guide.
|Nail art hack with oil!|
- Strangely enough I don't use nail art brushes that much cause I don't do many freehand manis (gradient everything!!) but here's some great brushes:
- Check out this oil trick to keep your brush strokes going on smooth AND to help preserve the life of your nail art brush bristles!
|Swirl vinyls from Twinkled T|
- From Twinkled T --- use my code SIMPLY for 10% off your entire order!
- P.S. They're called nail vinyls!
- STAY AWAY from the white vinyls sold on Amazon - they are extremely cheap quality, basically like hole reinforcements and do not have the flex in the vinyl that higher-quality nail vinyls do.
- No, striping tape is different in material than nail vinyls (see my Gradient Guide for more on that). But there's lots more you can do with striping tape since it's up to you to cut and place! You can buy a ton in bulk for cheap (like a few dollars) from Amazon.
- Not from Amazon! A lot of those are cheap quality and dissolve the colour once you put top coat on.
- Twinkled T has a massive selection of loose glitters, all solvent resistant and great for glitter placement manis! Use my code SIMPLY for 10% off!
- I don't use this kind of stuff often, but these places sell these kinds of 3D embellishments:
- I take my pics and film my videos with a Nikon D5300 camera body and a Nikkor 85mm f/3.5G AF-S DX ED VR lens. Prior to about October 2014 I was using the same body with a Nikkor 40mm f/2.8G AF-S DX lens.
- Personally I think they both major DSL-R brands take great pics, but it's not always about "WHICH CAMERA IS BETTER JUST TELL ME SO MY PICS WILL BE BETTER"... there is so so so much more to taking a great photo than having "the best" camera, a concept which is extremely subjective anyways.
- You actually have to KNOW HOW TO USE YOUR DSL-R CAMERA. Which means understanding how to work in full manual mode (you'll need to if you want the most control over your pics = better pics that look like how you want them to look), and then you'll need to understand all the functions of manual mode. Do you know what aperture is? Shutter speed? ISO? Do you know how they work together to take a great photo? If not then I promise you, so long as you do your homework (read up on DSL-R manual functions, watch YouTube videos on it), then your new Canon or Nikon will take great photos, whatever brand you end up choosing. If they turn out shitty and assuming you bought a somewhat recent and fully-loaded DSL-R, then it's probably because you didn't know how to use it. Tough love, eh?!
- I used just 2 x 5200k 28W CFL (compact fluorescent lighting) bulbs screwed into regular 'ol desk lamps for the longest time. Around mid-February of 2015 I added a third CFL, 5000k 43W plugged into an Illumi softbox reflective umbrella contraption on a Mantis 3m stand. I got these at my local photography store but I've seen many similar items on Amazon like this PBL Photo Studio softbox, or kits out there like this one that come with it all. I still use my desk lamps as my major source of light as they are easy to aim/angle, but the large umbrella stand thing helps give an overall greater light exposure.
- Yes, in Adobe Photoshop CS6. I use it to adjust light exposure levels, colour balance, add my watermark, make swatch/brush porn collages, memes, etc.
- Read and watch my video and blog post on how to make amazing nail art video tutorials! I cover everything from backgrounds to lighting to camera to editing and exporting to Instagram!
- I used to use iMovie, but recently I've switched to Final Cut Pro X because it lets me do some more complex stuff.
- I upload my full mani nail arts to my YouTube channel, be sure to subscribe so you don't miss my next full minute video!
- I also post 15sec versions of my nail art tutorials on my Instagram account.
- Right here on the o the Nail Porn page! Nail porn is like porn for nail polish freaks - multiple-angled shots of gorgeous polish bottles, seductive brush moves, and sensual slow-mo glitter shots. You can find mine along with others' renditions under the #simplynailporn hashtag on social media. Head on over to the Nail Porn page to see all my videos so far!
♡ ♡ ♡ RANDOM STUFFS ♡ ♡ ♡
- How many bottles of nail polish do you own?
- As of August 2015, over 900. Check my Stashology page to see pics of my stash, and my Google spreadsheet with a list of all of 'em!
- Don't ask people to follow you. No seriously, it's facking annoying. Also don't spam others' posts with crap about how you post great nail arts and post no ads... as I put it, what would you say to some punk who tried to sell their lemonade on your lawn? GET OFF MA LAWN is what you'd say!
- To gain followers you gotta actually do work. Put tons of effort in your designs, improve your cuticle clean-up, lighting, backgrounds and whatever else is feasible for you to do. The followers will come to you because they want to see more of your stuff!
- Once you've established an awesome account that people want to see, make video tutorials and use feature hashtags of large accounts who may actually share your video with millions of IG users! How?!?! Watch and read my post on how to make amazing nail video tutorials and fast forward towards the end ;)
- Yes, the majority of the polish I swatch and review on my blog are provided as a press sample by either the company themselves or a stockist. Please read my disclosure policy for more on that boring stuff.
- A lot of indie nail polish companies have blogger/swatcher application forms on their website. But first, are your photos ones that companies would want to use to promote their product? Remember that they have to want you to showcase their product because they want to be able to use your photos as promotional shots for potential buyers. Will people buy the polish because of your pics? Look at some of your fav swatch bloggers - what makes their photos so great, so uniform? Adapt some of these qualities and an indie nail polish company might just take you up on your application!
- Head over to the free glitter blank templates page!
- Why do you ask so many questions? Now go follow my kitty Menchie on Instagram @menchiethecat.
- Whatd'ya know I already do on the Party Mix page!
♡ ♡ ♡ BORING STUFF ABOUT ME ♡ ♡ ♡
- When did you first get into nail art?
- I started doing stripes on my nails as early as 15... which was 11 years ago (do the math and you might just figure out how old I am). But at the time nail art wasn't a "thing", it was more or less considered tacky. So I was pretty much alone painting all my nails different colours, being obsessed with Sally Hansen Prisms and people thinking I'm a freak.
- In late February 2014 - here's my very first blog post! What took me so long? I never even realized there was an online community for my passion (obsession). That and I never had time previously to realize it as I was finishing grad school and the like. So when I defended my thesis in January 2014, I knew the first thing I was going to do was start a blog. YAASSS CAREER GOALS.
- HAHA, um, NO. I'd be poor AF and living out of a cardboard box if I did. I work full-time for the Canadian government as a crime statistics analyst and yes, I spend 99% of my time off work doing da nails.
- Nothing... I'm in the stay home club.
- I gotta say the scaled gradient... represent!!!
- There's this thing called practice or whatever?
- I pull them out of my ass, idk.
- The year of the flakies.
- Can you bake me some cookies?
- I have no idea what you are talking about?
Any more questions you'd like to see here that weren't answered? Comment below and I'll add them... maybe ;)