I’ve always wondered how manicurists do their own nails at home (whenever I see them at work/in the salon, their nails are usually bare or layered in a clear coat—that’s it). So we tracked down a few of our fave nail artists and asked them to turn their polish brushes on themselves to show us how they gussy up their talons on their off hours. Surprisingly, they didn't even THINK about applying pale pink!
Kimmie Kyees’ “Snap, Crackle, Pop”
Kimmie Kyees’ client list is a versatile bunch—Rihanna, Britney Spears, Eva Longoria, Katy Perry, Mary J. Blige and Salma Hayek (to name a few). But the one thing these stars all have in common is their cutting edge nail designs, often dictated by Kyees. Remember when Katy Perry painted a mini-portrait of her now-hubby Russel Brand on each digit? Riiiiiggght.
Nail the look: Step 1. Grab three shades of glitter polish (i.e. pink, blue and silver), and paint each nail with a diagonal swipe of each color. “I made sure that I mixed up the order of the colors so that the crackle would reflect the variations,” Kyees says.
Step 2. Add a topcoat when nails are still a little wet to blend the glitters together a bit, and then wait a few minutes until dry.
Step 3. Apply one layer of black crackle over each nail for the rocker-chic effect.
Julie Kandalec’s “Metallic Dip”
After finishing beauty school at 17 (you go girl!), Julie Kandalec studied painting, drawing and dance. Who said manicurists aren’t artists?! Kandalec’s work can now be seen on the fingertips of stars like Brooklyn Decker, Eve, Kim Cattrall, Mia Wasikowsa and Rose Byrne.
Nail the look: Step 1. Polish your nails with two coats of a deep shade, like Essie in Dive Bar. The richer the shade, the more the glitter will stand out, says Kandalec.
Step 2. Use a solid metallic polish (like Zoya in Trixie) to paint the tip of each nail, French manicure-style.
Step 3. Next, take your favorite glitter polish and brush it from the tip of each nail (over the solid metallic swipe) back towards the cuticle. “Place most of the glitter on the tip of the nail and taper it off as you move the brush down the nail,” says Kandalec.
Beth Fricke’s “Pretty in Pink…and Glitter…and Black”
Beth Fricke’s portfolio includes covers for such big-wig mags as Elle, Harper’s Bazaar, Glamour and Nylon. Plus, she’s played handsies with celebs like Drew Barrymore, Heidi Klum, Miranda Kerr and Mariah Carey. Yeah, she’s kind of a big deal in the nail world. It’s no wonder that with her busy schedule she made sure that her mani could do double duty—first for this story, and second for her agency’s annual Glitter Party.
Nail the look: Step 1. After a thin layer of base coat, apply two layers of a glittery pink or rose polish. “I don’t normally like glitter polish, but it really pops under a flat shatter color,” says Fricke. And, P.S. Fricke swears that those crackle/shatter polishes work better over a rough surface (like glitter).
Step 2. After the glitter polish is completely dry apply an even coat of OPI Black Shatter polish, which will fragment as it dries.
Step 3. Once it has cracked to your liking, seal it all (and boost shine) with a clear topcoat.