Monday, 27 January 2014

Tortoiseshell Nails


Today's nails are something I've wanted to try for a long time, and eventually decided to do after watching this fab tutorial by xameliax, which was featured earlier in the week on One Nail To Rule Them All, one of my favourite nail art blogs. Amelia used the cling-film method to create layers of colour to replicate tortoiseshell, so I decided to do the same. 

I used four shades, which were Forever (seventeen), Mocha (Barry M), Orange Soda (seventeen) and Rich In Heart (Sinful Colors -a really dark brown/red)

I began with a coat of Mocha, which I decided was the 'brownest' ....I don't have many brown polishes! Once fully dry, I then painted on a layer of Orange Soda. I used a ball of cling film to dab at the newly-applied polish to lift bits off and rough it up a bit. I did this finger by finger. I then did the same with Rich In Heart, and then Mocha again. I also added dabs of Forever (the palest shade) but I'm not sure you can see it much! I just kept dabbing layers until I was happy with the ratio of shades. 

I then used a brush dipped in acetone to mush it up even more, just painting/swiping random parts on each nail to mix the colours and make them look a bit softer. I added two coats of poshe fast-drying topcoat to make them all smooth and shiny. I also needed to clean up around the edges with a small brush dipped in acetone as it was quite messy with all the dabbing! The dark colours were such a pain to clean up, I thought I had done okay but you can still see a bit of mess in my photos - oops!

I'm desperate to add some gold studs, but I've got work this week and I don't think they'd be allowed, and they'd also be more likely to ping off at work. 

I'm reasonably happy with how they look - I think if I'd have had a more red-brown shade, they would have been a better colour overall. I don't know if they look like tortoiseshell but I do like the effect that all the layers have created, and would love to try this with brighter, more clashing colours!

 above: right hand, no flash

 above: left hand, no flash - I especially like how my thumb and ring finger have turned out on this hand!

above: right hand, with flash

above: two more pics, one of each hand, from my phone that show them off in different lights!


  1. OH.MY.GOSH.!!!!!i LOVE these!they are so freakin cool girlie!!!:-)so glad you tweeted me so i found your blog too!!:-)xx

  2. I think they definitely look tortoiseshell- really pretty :D
    L xo

    1. Thank-you - I'm so glad you think so! I keep looking at them and can't decide what I think! xx

  3. Really pretty!

  4. You constantly amaze me with all the intricate nail patterns. How can you bear to only have each design on your nails for a day or two? But then, at least you don't get fed up with your nails.


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