Or one unicorn, singular.
Galaxy nails were the order of the day for September 19th in the 31 Day Nail Art Challenge. I don’t do many galaxy manicures – it’s mostly just a lot of sponge painting and glitter, and I’ve got enough of that in my repertoire already. Also, I find space to be singularly uninspiring. I prefer the more watery “space” that’s up to 2,500 kilometers straight down.
All that to say I didn’t exactly give this manicure my all, which is of course why it turned out better than any galaxy mani I’ve ever attempted before. For these fluky nails, I brushed on two coats of a black creme polish before randomly sponging on three frosty lacquers in hot pink, baby pink and dark teal. The frosty polishes were a good choice, adding a hit of twinkling shimmer. They also layered really nicely over the black creme, blending together into a bruise-hued mass of cosmic clouds.
I then brushed on one coat of Enchanted Polish’s fittingly-named Instant Galaxy, a holographic topper speckled with iridescent blue glitter. After that dried, I brushed on a smattering of holographic stars with Liquid Sky Lacquer’s megawatt silver holo, Dream. Finally, I set a prancing silver unicorn charm from Daily Charme on my middle finger (not my usual accent nail choice, but this particular space unicorn is on the larger size, and I didn’t think my ring finger would accommodate his galloping girth.)
Here’s a small lesson in why you should never overthink things. I’ve had the idea for these Aurora Borealis nails simmering away on the back burner of my mind for an eternity now, because I rather incorrectly assumed that they were going to be super difficult. A galaxy manicure background AND what I thought was going to be some labour-intensive watercolour-type work? Count. Me. Out.
Then I actually took stock of the nail art tools and techniques I had at my disposal, and realized that I was needlessly fretting. That galaxy manicure background? As easy as swiping on a single coat of Enchanted Polish’s Instant Galaxy, a holographic glitter topper that makes every dark polish it touches look like the twinkling night sky. And as for the watercolour work I was contemplating for the hazy, diffuse look of the Northern Lights themselves, I decided my free-handed colour-blending was already pretty perfect – no need to involve excess brushes and acetone and what’s sure to be a lot of swearing if we don’t need to, right? So fret not, nail art enthusiasts (or at least fret less) – sometimes even the seemingly insurmountable obstacles turn out to be nothing but tiny little anthills of annoyance once you really get down to it. You’ve got the power!
Galaxy nails (a type of design that makes your nails twinkle like the cosmos) are a mainstay of the nail art world. Indeed, it was after only my third or fourth attempt at nail art, period, that I decided to just jump in the deep end and lay down some sponged-on space nails, technique (or lack thereof) be damned! But it turns out that galaxy manicures are actually pretty easy, and somewhat blunder-proof – after all, the cosmos is just a higgeldy piggeldy mess of colours, lights and sparkles to begin with (Finger Candy: Come for the nails, stay for the faulty science!)
One of the trickier parts of the galaxy look, though, is duplicating the tiny, ice cold pinpricks of light that dot the night sky. Glitter polishes can really pull their weight as starry sky stand-ins, but if you use too heavy a hand, you’ll muddle the look.
But a polish like this one, the aptly named Instant Galaxy, is the perfect backing for spaced-out nails – one light, even coat over a dark polish truly does produce a perfect instant galaxy. Here I’ve shown Instant Galaxy, a holographic topper speckled with tiny ice blue flakies and holo micro glitter, over a basic black creme in both the shade and the sun. In the shade, this polish produces a gorgeous, lightly speckled effect where the flakies glow from within like the first ice chip stars in the velvet night sky (cripes, now we’re getting into overly florid poetic recitations; looks like you’re all getting a full Finger Candy education today, my friends!) I also think this combination in the shade can look a bit like granite – it would be cool to try it over a darkened green or brown or blue. But the really nice surprise with Instant Galaxy is that in addition to being a gorgeous shimmer topper, it’s also a MEGA holo that will turn any polish it touches into an instant rainbow.
All the way around, Instant Galaxy is a pretty perfect specimen (and now we’ve circled back to the science again. But hey, don’t worry, gang, I’ll cut you some slack on tonight’s homework, just because I’m nice that way. Class dismissed!)
Out of focus holos are the best holos!
Having lost my dear old cat, Porky, to old age not two weeks ago, I initially wasn’t super keen on tackling a manicure to fit day 15’s theme of cats in the Oh Mon Dieu Nail Art Challenge. I have lost pets before – my childhood Cocker Spaniel, Boo, my young adulthood cat, Puddin’, my goldfish, Fred – but none have hurt like this. She was just such a major part of my life for so very long – 15 of her 22 years – and there’s a weird part of me that doesn’t know how to be without her.
All that to say I’m not quite ready to put brush to nail to create a wonderous bit of nail art honouring my kitty. Or any kitty, really. 😦 So what better time to bust out some glittery kitten nail stickers to do all the heavy lifting for me? I bought these particular stickers through Daily Charme, and they’re adorable – the cutest little glittery cats, shooting stars and tantalizing fish bones. I’m typically not one to think there’s too much of something, particularly when that something is either holographic glitter or cats (or in this case, in the best of both worlds, BOTH) but with the holo base I used here, Enchanted Polish’s Instant Galaxy holographic topper over a plain black creme, I think there may be a touch too much going on. You can barely even see Darth Kitty hiding out there on my middle finger! It’s just a lot to process, what with the glimmering rainbows, hand-painted holographic stars and glittery kitties floating in space. Huh, didn’t think that’s a sentence you’d ever hear me say – too many glittery kitties floating in space? 😉