MORE Gradient Nails!


Wow apparently I really *am* on a gold (and grey) kick? IDK, I just love the cool-toned low-keyness of grey combined with the crazy flash of a warm metallic? Maybe I need to get some battleship-grey silk shantung cigarette pants and a preposterously lavish gold brocade jacket? In the meantime, I’ll keep wearing this combo on my eyes … and ON MAH NAILS.


A gold and a grey, obviously. I used midtoned cool “Palisade” by Nubar as my base, and VERY elaborate gold. For that, you’ll want something that’s light on actual pigment, and heavy on shimmer / sparkles / glitters — that makes it easier to get a gradient that doesn’t look muddy or streaky. You’ll also want one or more clear top coats (I use a thick smoothing top coat followed by Sally Hansen Insta-Dri).

FIRST, do your base. I use my usual three coats of Nailtiques Formula 2, because if I don’t, my thin shitty weak-ass nails are sure to break. :(

THEN, do your grey. If you find that your whole manicure is more likely to chip or peel off in giant chunks when you have super thick multilayered polish (ugh this always happens to me), then you can paint the grey just up to the point where it’ll be totally covered with gold, and leave the very tip portions of your nails “nude.”

Let your grey dry, and do your first coat of gold. Wipe almost ALL of the polish off the brush, dab what’s left close to the tip of your nail, and holding the brush perpendicular to your nail surface, tap/blot it downwards with the cut end of the brush. This is the easiest way to get a semi-sheer (you can kinda see above where the gold is sheer enough to see the jagged grey edges through) deliberately-uneven coat on without using additional tools …

… but if you get it on a little too thickly and it’s not doing a smoothish “fade” for you, blot it a bit with a cheapo foam eyeshadow applicator! Or be like me and just use a fingertip. :/

Since you tapped that first coat o’ gold on, it’s gonna be predominantly SPARKLES and not much actual lacquer base, so it should be mostly dry almost immediately. Go back and do a second coat of the gold, this time just brushing it onto the very tips where you want it opaque — don’t cover up ALL of the gradient part you did earlier.

Then add your top coat(s) and you’re done! Except for cleanup. Which, I generally use an orange stick to scraaaape off anything I’ve slopped onto the sides of my fingers as I go along — it’s easier than using a brush + remover at the end of the process, as that usually results in me completely effing up at least three nails.

WHOA, SO GLAM. I feel totally mentally prepped for Trivia Night now. Exceeeepppppt that I haven’t picked a team name … waffling between “Tequila Mockingbirds” and “Kierkegaardians of the Galaxy,” suggestions welcome. <3