I was swatching the base polish I used for these nails, Picture Polish’s shimmer-flecked nude, Cherish, when I thought lovely and delicate though Cherish is, it’s really kind of boring. So then I added a couple of coats of Revlon’s Moon Candy iridescent flakies in Eclipse, which I thought would give the nude base a shimmering, opalescent look. Which they did, very much so, although, parenthetically, FRUSTRATION, THY NAME IS FLAKIE! The darn things NEVER want to lie flat on the nail, even after multiple layers of a high gloss top coat, and nearly all of them have issues hardening up, another problem that trumps a quality topcoat. But pretty? SO pretty, and worth their inherent frustration, at least in the short term.
As the final, finishing touch, I dropped a gold-toned, “gemstone” encrusted star charm from Daily Charme onto my ring finger, its opalescent stones perfectly mimicking the delicate, colour-shifting flakies (which themselves occasionally flash gold, depending on the quality of the light.)
Early on in my nail art adventures Mr. Finger Candy floated the nice, but ultimately impractical, suggestion that I concentrate my polish buying power on one single brand. He didn’t know at the time – hey, neither did I – that there are roughly 8,657 different nail polish manufacturers out there, each one trying something just a little bit different from the somethings their neighbours are trying. It’s like a super glittery version of the Wild West, with your wallet acting as the spoils of a victorious high noon shoot-out. A nice idea (and I am nothing if not brand loyal; I’ve used naught but Clean & Clear face wash for the past 20 years), but one manufacturer cannot satisfy all polish needs. Besides, would you really want it to? Life’s not worth living if you don’t have choice (having said all that, too much choice is practically debilitating. Am I the only one who feels like she’s having a panic attack in the yogurt aisle at the grocery store? Why is there so much yogurt? Why is all of it suddenly Greek? Why do half the brands contain Aspartame? What happened to basic old fruit-on-the-bottom yogurt? Wither the yogurt? WITHER THE YOGURT?!?)
Tangents about dairy products aside, this manicure, a well-hidden teal and purple gradient topped with three different brands’ worth of iridescent flakies, really employs that whole “polish for the people” philosophy. Sure, it would have been nice if I could have gotten this effect out of one bottle of polish (which I clearly don’t own, or else I wouldn’t have been cherry-picking), but I like the every-manufacturer-for-themselves approach, too – it’s always satisfying to know I can cobble together a current look from polishes I already own without yet more financial and storage outlay.
For these super flaked out nails, I topped a can’t-see-it-at-all gradient of Nails Inc.’s blackened teal, Kensington, and China Glaze’s dark plum, Urban-Night, with one coat of China Glaze’s orangey-gold flakie, Luxe and Lush, one coat of Revlon’s blue Moon Candy flakie, Eclipse, and one coat of Nails Inc.’s yellowy-green Special Effects flakie, The Wyndham. It would undoubtedly be easier to just purchase a bottle of rainbow flakies – same effect, less work, less polish! – but if you’re on the fence like I am (I’m just not fond of iridescent flakies; they wear terribly, never seem to fully dry and stick up in maddening lumps) you probably already have the components available in your stash to achieve a very similar look, spread around though they may be!