I got a little hooked on Christmas trees after Monday’s manicure on the blog, and decided to try out a few different versions of it. All of which can be made using tape and dotting tools (or a tooth pick). And while I was at it I figured I could post a few simple tutorials of the three I ended up with. Each one takes only 5 minutes to paint once you’ve got the hang of it.
1 – Paint your nails in a base color, I picked Lime Crime Once In A Blue Mousse. Then I cleaned up my edges with a thin brush dipped in 100% acetone and applied a coat of Seche Vite top coat. Wait until the polish is completely dry.
2 – Apply two pieces of tape to form a triangle on your nail. Use nail tape or cut your tape into small strips to apply in a crisscross pattern on your nail. Make sure it is pressed down well so nail polish doesn’t get underneath it.
3 – Paint your nail polish on top of the tape. I used Pure Ice Femme Fatale.
4 – In this step you’ll remove the tape, and I think it works best if it’s removed before the polish has had time to dry. That way none of it will rip off your nail because it has stuck to your tape. Remove one strip at a time, at a sharp angle, to create a clean line. Do if fast but carefully. It took me a couple tries to get it right. One good thing about the top coat over your base polish (the blue one) is that if you get some green polish where it shouldn’t be you can dip a brush in acetone and remove it. As long as you use your brush very lightly, it should remove the green mess and a bit of your top coat, instead of your base color.
5 – Step 5 and 6 are optional, I just wanted to create an accent nail. First I put the scotch tape back to frame the tree.
6 – Then I applied glitter over my tree to look like ornaments – I used OPI You Glitter Be Good To Me. After removing the tape and letting the polish dry, I used a dotting tool to apply a little bit of white polish (Essie Blanc) to the bottom of my nail.
After another layer of top coat, you are done! Turns out I forgot to take a picture of the manicure after I added the snow.
The second version is painted pretty much free-handed, but you’d be surprised at how east it was!
1 – Paint your nail in a base color, I used three coats of Lime Crime Milky Ways.
2 – Use a tooth pick or your very smallest dotting tool to paint the design – I have one that is pointed instead of rounded. I actually practiced once on a paper plate before doing it on my nail. You will only need a little bit of polish on your tool each time, and you should wipe it off often, so that the edges of the tree don’t get too thick. I started with the top of the tree, painting an upside down V, with the ends turned up. Then you just keep adding to it with thin strokes out to the sides. It does not have to look perfect, and it is easier if you make the tree thinner first and add to it gradually. I added the star by putting a large dot of gold at the top and then dragging my tool through the polish to create the points. I used Julie G Gift of Gold, and thought it looked best after two layers.
3 – I used the same dotting tool to randomly place a bit of snow (Essie Blanc) on top of the tree. I used a rounded dotting tool for the snow around it and on the ground, and I needed two layers for it to show up this well. Then I finished it off with Seche Vite after I was sure everything was dry.
TIP: Put some of the polish you are using on a paper plate so that it’s easier to dip your tool in it and see how much you are using.
This last tree is by far the simplest, and took me only a minute or two to finish. But I think it’s very cute.
1 – Start out with the same base coat and let it dry. Use a dotting tool or a bobby pin to apply the first color – Lime Crime Pastelchio. Make sure the dots aren’t very close together since you’ll want to fill it up with other colors.
2 – Next I used Pure Ice Femme Fatale for a few more dots.
3 – Then I finished it off with a few glittery dots of Julie G Rock Candy and Mistletoe, before adding a coat of Seche Vite.
And here you have all three of them together. Which one is your favorite?