Thursday, April 25, 2013

Nail Art Nail-Off: Newspaper Nails

If you've spent any time on Pinterest recently, you've probably seen a picture like this floating around:

From this video by Cutepolish
 Those look so cool, right?  And all the videos make them seem not that hard, so we decided to try it.  Arden's attempt first:

I started by painting my nails OPI's My Boyfriend Scales Walls (I use this so much I don't know why I keep taking pictures of it; I could easily just use an old one.)  I didn't want to wait too long for them to dry, so I then painted a fast-drying top coat (Essie Good to Go) on top.

Next, I cut out small sections of newspaper.  A cursory look at all the newspaper nails tutorials led me to think that one shortfall to most of them is that only a few words of newsprint can fit on each nail.  I decided to try to avoid this issue by cutting out pages with smaller type; specifically, the baseball highlights.

Then, I poured some rubbing alcohol into a small glass.

I then dipped a finger in the rubbing alcohol and left it there for about 8 seconds.  (A lot of the literature [read: nail blogs] disagrees on how long you should leave your nail in the alcohol.  Some sources say 5 seconds, others say 10, and still more say 15-20.  I went with just under 10.)

A words of caution: the alcohol will start to eat at your nail polish.  If you leave it in too long, it could result in holes in your nail polish coverage.

Immediately after removing my finger from the alcohol, I pressed a strip of newspaper onto the nail.  I held it there for probably 20-30 seconds, trying to press down hard on the paper to ensure the newsprint transferred.

And this is where I should show you a triumphant picture of my fabulous newspaper nail.  This is what I actually got:

Yeah, not exactly a stunning result.  Several blogs said that if your newsprint didn't transfer well, you could rub it off (adding a little rubbing alcohol helps) and then try again.  Well, I tried again A. LOT.  In the above picture, that's my 3rd attempt on my middle finger.  You can also tell that I've rubbed off a couple of bad tries on my pointer finger, and the alcohol has caused the tip of the nail to chip.

Unfortunately, I never got just outstanding results.  Eventually I gave up and put a top coat on the faint results I got:

I'm still not sure exactly what went wrong-- maybe my newspaper just isn't dark enough to transfer well?  Maybe there's a certain kind of way you're supposed to press the newspaper onto your nails?  Maybe adding the top coat on top of the white was a mistake?  Or maybe I'm just terrible at this technique?

Even in this artsy pic they just don't look good.
Lisl here:

Ugh. So I tried these late at night and I gave them one go and got crazy frustrated and left it at that.  I started with a base of Revlon Minted, and did not use a top coat (Arden and I strategized and decided the I should change a few things to see if I got any different results).  Then I dipped my finger in a small bowl of tequila (second thing I did differently: different kind of alcohol!) and applied newspaper cutouts from a different newspaper (The New York Times).

This didn't work; it just peeled off a bunch of polish from my pinky finger! See that giant smudge?  So I tried a different method: I held the newspaper over my finger and dabbed it with some tequila until it was soaked and stuck to the nail, then peeled it off after a few seconds.  This transferred the ink fairly well, but left a lot of weird splotches, and sometimes if the paper got too wet the ink would sort of travel to somewhere else on the nail.  This was annoying.

I even had trouble applying top coat.  It totally smeared the ink every where.  See my ring finger? Gross!

So, I didn't end up having the "weak transfer" problem Arden had – either the lack of top coat, tequila, or the New York Times special magic ink fixed that.  Instead, I got saddled with a host of problems of my own.  Frowny face.

One final note:  we did this post at the behest of my BFF from first grade (still my BFF now, obv) who is a dedicated follower of our blog and requested a newspaper nails tutorial in the comments section.  By the way, thanks Sarah, Arden and I had a great time.  NOT. (Just kidding Sher, I love you).

Anyway, if YOU (the reader) would like to request a tutorial for anything, we'd be happy to give it a shot, leave us a note in the comments and we promise we won't complain as much next time.  Pinky swear.

1 comment:

  1. This is so cool. I like the print on white polish. :) I'm a fan of newspaper print decor.