NOTW: OPI Light My Sapphire + Nail Art Fail

Friday, September 14, 2012

As much as I've been drawn to this season's hunter green, I can't fully rid myself of my attraction to deep blue nails. Typically I'd save these icier, darker colors for post-festivities winter, but I thought I'd change things up a bit before the slew of rich autumnal maroons and burgundys. 

I know a lot of blue nail fanatics tend to go for the lighter hues, leaning more towards cornflower and pastels, but I've always preferred the darker, inky tones, and Light My Sapphire is quickly becoming a favorite. It's not so dark that it looks black, but is more of a slightly darkened, cool, navy. Since I've featured quite a few deep blue polishes, I'll do a bit of a comparison. Light My Sapphire is darker than Butter London Big Smoke (post), frostier and cooler than Sally Hansen Thinking of Blue (post), and lighter and slightly warmer than OPI Roadhouse Blues (post). 

Not the most unique of nail polishes, especially if you're a fan of blues, but I love the level of frostiness in this. It's not quite as noticeable as with Big Smoke, but it really perks up what would be a much flatter creme. And while I'm not typically one for matching my nail color to my clothing, I wore a navy shift dress to work this week, and got some compliments on how my nails worked with the outfit. I suppose that's the trick, then? To wear a similar, but not exactly dead-on color?

I painted my nails on Saturday, and just last night, when they were looking a little scruffy, I decided to spruce them up with some DIY nail art. As funky and interesting nail designs go in and out of season, I've never felt particularly drawn to them, but something about this fall is different. Suddenly, a basic manicure even in the most beautiful and interesting color I own feels boring. I actually blame it on the latest issue of InStyle Makeover (typically a filler magazine for me, but this issue was excellent!) with their enticing pages of the modern French manicure. You've seen it before now, and Lisa Eldridge did a whole video on it months ago. A far cry from the outdated thick strips of white, this version feels so fresh and interesting--and the color possibilities are endless!

Since I already had a blue base, I decided to go for a yellow French tip. It's quite "out there" for me, but figured with the right equipment, I might be able to pull it off. I had purchased a pack of Perfect Tip stickers (without which I could never have painted a reasonably steady tip), and figured the whole thing would be a breeze.

What I didn't know is how damn impossible it is to get those stickers on straight, and at a uniform length away from the tip. I kept having to peel them off and start all over again, and it was this part of the process that took the longest and involved the most sweating and cursing. I did, eventually, get them on reasonably straight (though not at all uniform). Out came the bright yellow (Maybelline Fierce N Tangy), and from there the whole thing just went to sh*t. I hadn't realized that it would take a strongly pigmented yellow to fully cover such a dark blue, and the Maybelline streaked endlessly. 

This was the point where I probably should have just given up completely, but I was determined to keep going, and glooped on the yellow until I had opaque tips. Waited about two hours for all those layers to dry, and then peeled off the stickers to reveal a hideously lumpy, bumpy, and entirely uneven modern French manicure. 

As I should have guessed, my crooked placement of the tip stickers completely ruined what could otherwise have been a pretty effect. Some yellow tips are thicker than others, and I don't think a single one of them is that perfect French curve. 

There's a reason I'm only showing you iPhone pictures, by the way--the slightly grainy quality is what I was after in this case! But despite how poorly this turned out, my thirst for DIY nail art hasn't been quenched at all. In fact, I've just purchased some nail art accessories which you're sure to see on the blog just as soon as they arrive!

And for anyone saying that my DIY French didn't turn out that badly, remember that the picture quality hides some deficiencies. 

Or as my friend aptly put it, "Well, from far away, it doesn't look like complete shit."


But I'm already looking forward to my next (hopefully improved) attempt!

Have a terrific weekend!

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