watermelon mani

i’m still into my ‘let’s pretend it’s spring by wearing bright and perky manicures’ phase. it’s not ideal, but it’s necessary. i’m giving london two more weeks to get its sh*t together before i’m hauling ass back to sydney, where it is currently 29 degrees. in autumn.

in the meantime, i’m channelling summer with this fruity little number. ain’t she cute?watermelon nail art manicure

watermelon nail art manicure

i was having a little play with polka dots (you know about my obsession – and here’s a secret, you guys only see about a third of the polka dot manis that adorn my nails. that’s how common they are) and randomly tried black dots on this punchy watermelon pink.

watermelon nail art manicure

the effect didn’t look too different to watermelon seeds, so i just went ahead and added a white and green stripe to the edge of the nail. ét voila: a cutie patootie take on my favourite fruit.

watermelon nail art manicure

to avoid smearing, keep your two coats of pink as thin as possible and really, truly wait for them to be completely dry before going about your dotting and striping.

i do the whole end of the nail white, then add the green on top as its easier than trying to paint two really thin stripes side by side. but keep in mind that by this point you’re working with four coats of nail varnish – thick and gloopy if you don’t allow them to dry properly.

watermelon nail art manicure

so remember: two coats of pink. dry completely. black dots and white stripe. dry completely. green stripe. dry completely. top coat. time consuming, but worth it – you don’t want to get to the very last step and ruin it all by smudging. be patient.

watermelon nail art manicure

gel nail manicure

i feel like i spend half my life painting my nails. seriously. no matter how carefully i apply base, colour and top coat, my naughty nails always chip, crack and crumble.

living in los angeles i took full advantage of the salon culture indulging in gel manis and pedis regularly – my nails have never been in such great shape. my salon of choice was a little place in venice. they accepted walk-ins and while having my nails pampered, i would enjoy a neck and shoulder massage too. i got a little greedy.gel nails, shellac nails, gel manicure, stanley house hotel spa, manicure, gelish nails

i have yet to find a salon in london that is both convenient and reasonably priced (and let’s not forget clean and hygienic), but i haven’t given it too much time.

on a recent trip to my favourite spa back home i decided to remedy my misbehaving paws by having a gel manicure.

in the past i have had shellac and gelish nails but stanley house spa use a version called gel fx by orly.

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after nails are prepped the gel base is painted on and heated with a uv light, the varnish sets and forms a chip resistant barrier. the colour is then applied in two thin coats and your nails set under the uv light. super shiny, hard-wearing and they last at least two weeks. gel nails are the perfect solution to naughty nails that crack and chip easily. you can paint over them with a different colour if you get bored too.

i chose the plum noir varnish and in just 20 mins i had a gorgeously glossy new set of nails that have lasted a whole week without chipping. on most people it will last for two. gel fx by orly, gel nails, gelish nails, shellac nailsgel nails, shellac nails, mac viva glam III lipstick, gel manicure, stanley house hotel spa, manicure, gelish nails

if you live in the nw i would highly recommend paying a visit to stanley house – i’m extremely impressed with my manicure, the colour selection was bang on trend too – it even matches my current favourite lipstick (mac’s viva glam iii, if you must know).

londoners – if you have a fave salon that does great gels i need to know about it, i’ve gotten used to good nails again. gel nails, shellac nails, gel manicure, stanley house hotel spa, manicure, gelish nails

sparkle and sapphire

this sudden burst of winter wonderland delight in london has me really very distracted. i catch myself gazing out the window at my dazzling white garden and dashing out frequently for crunchy walks through snow-covered parks.opi light my sapphire and barry m multi glitter sparkle manicure, peanut buttered blog

this daydream state is not conducive to getting much work done, nor thinking up brilliant ideas. usually i ponder long and hard about what new theme or design i can come up with for tuesday talons, or spend hours trawling my favourite blogs and pinterest for fresh inspiration. not this week, though – not when there are snowball fights to be had.opi light my sapphire and barry m multi glitter sparkle manicure, peanut buttered blog

and so to an old standby – half moons and glitter. and why not? old standbys are comfy and familiar, and my well-practiced hand can paint and shoot in no time before running outside again for more snowman making.opi light my sapphire and barry m multi glitter sparkle manicure, peanut buttered blog

i went for winter-appropriate light my sapphire by opi. two coats and allow to dry, before using a very thin brush to apply half moons in silver multi glitter by barry m. rather than shaping perfect moons on my thumbs, i dragged out the sparkle polish to create a faint elongated gradient (pictured below). top polish, allow to dry, and off you go!opi light my sapphire and barry m multi glitter sparkle manicure, peanut buttered blogopi light my sapphire and barry m multi glitter sparkle manicure

meet you outside in ten for a snowball fight?opi light my sapphire and barry m multi glitter sparkle manicure

p.s. come say hi – @peanut_buttered @andreamagrath or we’re on facebook.opi light my sapphire and barry m multi glitter sparkle manicure