Negative space nails – a manicure in which areas of your nail are left bare or a design is cut into the polish itself – represent *the* trendy nail art technique of the moment. This is probably because it creates a super cool effect (so long as you don’t mind bits of your bare, stained, chipped and gouged nails being exposed to the judgemental eyes of the world), but also because it’s indisputably HARD, and nail art enthusiasts are nothing but a group up to an annoyingly difficult challenge.
Speaking of challenges, these nails, my second attempt at a negative space mani, represent my entry in the Oh Mon Dieu nail art challenge for day 23’s theme of negative space. Yet for all my tough talk about how difficult and time consuming they can be, it was probably the easiest-going manicure I’ve done in months. Isn’t that always the way? You fret about the hard ones and slack on the easy stuff, only to discover that you rock at the advanced difficulty, but have somehow forgotten how to use a dotting tool.
For these negative heart nails, I used a favourite glitter polish, KB Shimmer’s Make My Gray, for a pop of colour, adding Bourjois’s watermelon-hued Rose Imaginaire to my index and ring fingers. Once dry, I softened up the polish I wanted to erase by dipping a detail brush in acetone and marking out the little hearts. Then, using the pointed edge of an orangewood stick, I carved out the hearts, scraping up any excess polish as I went. Finally, I cleaned up the smudges left behind in the bare areas with a detail brush dipped in acetone, sealing the whole thing in with a coat of Seche Vite to smooth down any lumps and bumps.
It goes without saying that the next time I try a negative space mani, it will be a crapfest of epic proportions, but for now I’ll revel in the unexpected easiness of these nails – negative space nails with virtually no negatives!