“Tie Dye” Nails done by a total amateur

how to paint your nails in a funky tie dye way

I must admit that I’m not a nail person, generally.  I keep my fingernails natural and short, because I tend to be rough on them, between projects, typing, and just general life.  But, as I have recently discovered by discovering Pinterest, apparently interesting nail polish is very hip right now, and I figured why not try something wild.  The thing about most of the nail polish ideas I’ve seen, they look awesome because some professional nail person did them, on their totally perfectly shaped nails, with their nail person skill, and probably an assistant!

So what happens when a total amateur tries one of these fancy techniques?  And if that person was me, then of course I modified things a bit, too…  Let’s find out!

You’ll need:

  • 2 colors of nailpolish (see below for details)
  • 1 top coat
  • glass of  room temperature water
  • a bunch of toothpicks
  • Nailpolish remover & q-tips for cleanup

So I’d seen some pretty marbling techniques pinned on pinterest, but those looked pretty complex.  I decided to simplify it a bit, and use colors that mixed well together, to get a tie dye effect.  I was out at Target yesterday (more on that later, I got some great crafty/foodie supplies there) so I picked up some inexpensive NYC nailpolish in a bright blue and a glittery lime green, and a top coat.  You can of course choose any combo you like, but I’d recommend some along the same spectrum (that would mix together for a good color) for this technique (like yellow and an orange red would work well).

I started out by painting the lightest color on as a bottom coat.  It was pretty sheer, so I used two coats, but if your first color is opaque you can just use one.  Then I used the technique in this video to create the tie dye effect.  But rather than using all the colors that she uses, I just alternated a drop of each of the 2 colors (4 drops total).  You’re not using as much polish in the water, so it’s a little easier to do, and you’ll get multiple shades from the two colors mixed together.

I also did two fingers at a time in several cases, just to speed things up.  Definitely tape your fingers as she shows, or else you’ll end up with a great deal of nailpolish to clean up.  Also, I’d get a friend to help you with this, primarily to clean up your fingers afterwards so you don’t risk your new nails with nail polish remover.

What do you think?  I did get a few small bubbles on a couple of nails, and I messed one (got a big glob of blue) and had to redo it.  But all in all, not that hard to do, especially with appropriate expectations to start with!

Not too bad for a girl who doesn’t do her nails.

What about you? Do you have any cool techniques to share?