Thursday, 21 February 2013

Foil nail art.

For Christmas, I received nail art supplies in abundance. One present from my Mummy was a nail box by 17 equipped with polish, files, scissors, gems, orange sticks and nail foils. I have only ever had foils on my fingernails on one occasion; where I spent a ridiculous amount of money having the silver chrome Minx foils applied for my Aunts 50th birthday, where we spent the weekend in Rome. Blingtastic, yes. Were they worth the money? Absolutely not! Did I like them? Yes, in a way. I liked the look, the random compliments from passengers on my daily commute, and on my travels in Rome, but I was disappointed in the way they were applied, by an apparent 'professional'. The overall finish left my nails with bumpy ridges, and it just looked like a rush job, even though I was sitting there for well over ninety minutes.

I did vow never to get them done again, not at the salon I went to anyway. However, that all changed when I opened the nail box on Christmas day. Part of me wishes I had waited for a special occasion, and used them for a night out or for a real reason to get glammed up. However, the impatient child within me decided to just give them a go, as I was bored at the weekend whilst the boyfriend was working (the joy of being a sports betting trader's girlfriend.) The nail box contained three different designs; a glitter gold, a shiny/matte gold and the black and silver star design, which is the one that I opted for.

First, you need to make sure all nail polish has been removed, and there is no natural oils on the nail before application. This will just make the foils slide right off the nail, and won't last at all. I used the buffer cube, the one where you use different side of the file to remove ridges, flatten the surface add a shine etc. I then filed and shaped the nail to my desired shape. I always opt for a square finish; this is just my personal preference, as I have quite long fingers and I feel it just adds a nice shape to the hand. I also think it looks more elegant, but each to their own.

It is also best to trim the foils too before application; just so you don't have too much overlay to work with. Peal the foils off the plastic backing and place over the nail. I rubbed over the nail for approx 2 minutes with my fingers. I did this to warm up the adhesive to make it stick. This also helps to get a smooth finish and clean any bubbles that may have occurred. The instruction in the box (and also at salons that provide Minx) advise you to file off the excess foil until it is the same size as the natural nail. From my previous experience with foils, I opted not to do this. I didn't want a rough finish which can often happen when using a nail file, so I used very small nail scissors to trim the foil to get a nice neat finish along the tip of my natural nail. As I have square nails, this was very easy to do, as it was basically cutting in a straight line. I can envisage a nail file may be the best option for almond or round shaped nails.

I did one nail at a time; as there is no nail polish, you don't need to worry about smudges or mishaps with wet nails. Once I had completed all ten fingers, I then used a hair dryer on a high heat setting to blast the foils to again heat up the glue. This makes the foils extremely warm (please be careful when using your hair dryer, as your fingers can get extremely hot!) This also gives you a good opportunity to stretch the foils to completely cover the nail if they are not the right size for your fingernails. In my case, they seem to fit my nails perfectly. They were like they were custom made for my fingers.

Overall, I was very pleased with the finish, and teamed up with a glam outfit, these foil designs would really complete a going-out look. I can safely say I have done a complete U-turn on my stance on foils, and maybe doing a DIY job is the way to go for me. I shall definitely be applying the other set of foils in the not so distance future, but I shall be saving them for a special occasion.

They didn't last too long on the nails though, which is disappointing. This may be my own fault, with my almost OCD compulsion to have everything clean, so I am always washing my hands and/or having showers, but they lasted approx two days before they started to peel at the edges. Minx on the other hand, did last for around five days before this happened, so maybe it is a design flaw by the makers of 17. However I must say these foils are easy to apply and look great for a one-off night and I think anyone who loves to have fashion at and on their finger tips must give them a go at least once.

Let me know your experience of using foils, and if you have used a different brand of foils, post in the comments box, I'd love to give them a try.

Until next time...