Gorse Bush…

So from the desk that I paint my nails at, I can see over in to the woods and it really is great to see the plants starting to come to life again. I was getting tired of looking out on to it’s hollowness and being able to see naked trees and grey trunks far in to the distance. It’s refreshing to see the buds popping out, the leaves starting to unfurl and the whole body of the forest start to flesh out again. (Sure, I’ve had daffodils bobbing their heads at me for literally weeks but I’ll be glad to see them go as I don’t particularly like daffodils….) My inspiration is drawn directly from a gorse bush. It is a prominent feature to my window view, and it has really exploded with colour in the last day or so, I think the warmer spell helped. I personally know this gorse bush rather well, as every now and then I relive it of some of it’s branches and place them around my garden – particularly on the parts where the soil is bare. Why? Because the gorse bush has some massive thorns which are surprisingly sharp, and this helps keep away unwanted feline visitors who like to take regular nighttime ‘dig and dumps’. Top gardening tip for you there!

Gorse Bushes

BornPrettyStore: Big Sheet Animal Water Decals…

So this ‘Big Sheet of Animal Water Decals‘ has some super cute designs, there’s something for everyone – pandas, rabbits, cats, dogs and deer! It was sent to me by BornPrettyStore to be put through it’s paces and before I show you how some of them look on my nails, I just want to break down what great value this sheet is.

Big Sheet Water Decal Animal Sheet.JPG

You get 12 designs, each with 10 fingers worth, which equates to 120 water decals for the measly price of $2.87/$1.59 sale price (correct 29/4). This means each decal is costing you $0.02, amazing right? So the first design I’m going to show you is a good example of how to make your money stretch even further by using just one decal per mani as an ‘accent nail’.

I chose to use a decal from the deer set with a white background as this allowed me to paint the rest of my nails the same colour. Then it was just a case of cutting out the decal I wanted and applying it as normal. (If you’re unsure or need a refresher about this, keep scrolling as I’ve included a sort of step by step next) Ta-da! Simple, quick mani for $0.02.

Simple Deer Water Decal Use

Big Sheet Water Decal Deer Set

So I might have go a bit carried away about how cheap it is, so lets do the re-cap on how to actually use and apply this product properly. With them being water decals you will need; a shallow dish of water, tweezers, scissors, nail file and a tissue. I’ve chosen this super cute panda set to demonstrate the application steps.

Panda Set.JPG

The first step is to cut out the decals you wish to use. With this big sheet you need to be quite accurate with your cuts as there are no borders between each design – take it slow and steady.
Make sure you remove the clear, protective layer covering the decals and trim them to size before you submerge them in the water.
Leave them there for around 15 seconds, at this point the decal should be able to slide off the backing paper with ease and use your tweezers to remove them from the water. Place them on your nail in the correct position, gently dab with a tissue to remove excess water.
Then remove the excess that may be hanging off your nail with a file.
Ta-da!

Application Collage

The length of the water decals is quite generous and easily fitted all my nails. Personally my nails are all different lengths, so sometimes I trimmed off the top part of the decal to help the design sit better meaning I wasn’t having to file off parts that I liked.

Now came the biggest test – the top coat. Unfortunately sometimes decals melt, like the design squashes and the colours bleed and things that that. However, these guys actually look better with a top coat! They didn’t melt and it actually helped to iron out some of the wrinkles. (I used Seche Vite)

No Top Coat vs Top Coat.jpg

You may have noticed that I added some glitter on to the little water orbs the pandas are fascinated by. This totally isn’t necessary but helps to demonstrate how easy it is to customize the decals!

Big Sheet Animal Water Decals Panda.jpg

Aren’t they cute! They sailed through the top coat challenge, but how about the well known ‘3 hours in a  pool, teaching children to swim’ challenge? Amazing. Very minimal chipping, and even though the top coat may be helping this I’ve previously had the whole water decal float off my nail in to the pool. (Anyone else had that kind of problem?) But not these guys, look at the results!

Minimal Chipping.JPG

I’m so very impressed with how they did over-all, and I still can’t get over the price. I had another idea about creating a pretty, but very economical gift with them. Why not pair up a set of decals, with a matching polish for base colour, and an inexpensive but cute nail file? (Make it way nicer than the one I threw in for example…) So lets add it up, shall we say $1 for the file, $4 for the polish, $0.23 for the sheet of decals and maybe $1 for the pillow giftbox – that’s only $6.23/£4.81! How about that? A gift for under a fiver, amazing! What’s nice about these decals is that they don’t look poor quality or feel cheap once applied, so there’s no way someone would know.

Inexpensive Gift Idea

Do you ever have one of those items where you just have too many ideas for it and get a little obsessed with using it in different ways? Well I’m afraid that’s what happened with this sheet of decals. I really didn’t intend to do three different designs but after cutting out the dog set purely for the example gift set, the little dachshund was crying out to me to be used. I went for some super colourful, dry brush nails and used him as a pinky accent, cute no? And it only cost me $0.02 😉

Multi-coloured Dachshund.JPG

I can’t wait to use the little rabbits they’re so cute, but the cat set…. Anyone fancy them? I’m unfortunately not a cat person. Hope you enjoyed the review and that I gave you some ideas to think about!

If you’d like to order the whole sheet for yourself or friends head on over to BornPrettyStore. Anything in your basket that’s full price will recieve a 10% discount when you use the code ‘AZYW10’ at checkout.

AZYW10

Quick Chicks…

So if anyone doens’t know, it’s easter on Sunday and so far I have produced zero themed nails for it – whoops! Even though ‘Easter’ is a religious festival, for me it’s more about spring being in full flight. So I’ve went for some Easter chicks. These guys in particular were actually inspired by the little chicks from the game ‘Harvest Moon’. If you’ve played any of the games, you’re hopefully seeing it. They were quickly and simply done to create a kind of ‘graphic’ and ‘contemporary’ look.

Quick Chicks

Ombre Lace…

So with summer approaching there’s a lot of beautiful lace/macrame designs going about. I really fancied trying it  out, but soon after starting I realised I’d made my lines way too thick to have the delicacy that others achieved. There was no way I could include enough detail either to make it look like a proper macrame hanging so I kept it simple.

There’s always time to try again!

Ombre Lace Nail Art