Monday, August 11, 2014

MAKE STUFF - Pastel Geometric Nails

About a year ago, I was so not into nail art. Amy started long before I did, and I would always look at her masterpieces and think, "well, like most things Amy does, that is artful and interesting, but I just don't know where she finds the time to be spectacular in this way, in addition to being practically perfect in every other way, too."

But then I bought a real pretty robin's egg blue color .... and then a neat, weird yellow ... and then one day, I did a very simple design: half one color, half the other.


So, even the phrase 'nail art' makes me feel sooo uuuber ultra girly, which has never been my lot in life (I know, I know -- this website is VERY pink). But dude, why was I passing on an opportunity to have another little bit of art in my life? Why not have a little painting on my fingertips? My pal Steph and I went to a beauty supply shop and got this striping tape. You can get the effect with normal tape as well -- I've used painter's tape in the past -- but then you have to cut it up, which doesn't always end up even. Which could be fun! Get nuts, get wild.


You gotta be crazy patient, or the tape will peel up the wrong layers. I usually paint the bottom layer one day, and then the top coat the next, and then let that sit for at least a half hour before removing the tape. Luckily, your nails aren't wet during this time, so you can still be a useful and productive human while you wait.

When you lay down the tape, leave a little bit on each side of your nail. This should poke out after you paint over it, so that you'll be able to grab it and pull it off.


  • striping tape!
  • about three colors for the peek-a-boo design (I recommend three pastels! I did red this time and kinda wish I hadn't ... once I did lavender, yellow, and robin's egg blue, and that was the bizniz)
  • one top-coat color (I like white in these bright summah months)


1. Paint your bottom coat! This doesn't have to be very exquisitely done, as it will be mostly covered up. It also doesn't really matter what order you do them in. I don't even bother waiting more than about a minute in between applying each of these colors.

2. Wait for a very, very, very long time. Hours. Maybe overnight. Again, though, you don't have to be precious with this coat. If it gets messed up, then you'll just adjust the tape so that the weird stuff doesn't show. But you really want it to be fully hard and totally sealed off before putting on the tape. Seriously, I did the dishes and repotted a basil plant when I was in this stage. Do whatever you want.

3. Lay down the tape. I am not great at making things look precise or even, but I'm pretty good at making things that are 'off' look as though they're supposed to look that way. So I'm not one of those girls that makes neat and orderly stripes with this tape ... just like in improv dance, I establish a few ground rules, and then make sure that every nail looks a little different from every other one.
These are my ground rules for each nail:
  • three pieces of tape
  • the tape must cross at least twice

4. Paint over the tape. I usually only do one coat so that the tape doesn't get too buried.

5. Wait a long time again! At least half an hour, and ideally longer. But this time, this WILL be the final look, so be a little nicer this time.

6. Remove the tape!

7. Finish it off! Do a clear cover coat or fifteen. Sometimes I dip a q-tip in remover and clean up the edges, but sometimes I don't bother.

8. Show them off to yer pals!! Or your mom or the cashier at the grocery store. Whoever you choose, they will be impressed.

Okay there you go! There are so many ways you can change it up.. the bottom could be solid, the top could be multiple colors ... you can do something more organized with the tape design. Has anybody done anything like this before?


  1. That's nice! haha I would definitely need patience for each step.

    :) Semirah

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