A Twist on the Ombre or Gradation Manicure
Have you seen the ombre manicure that was featured in InStyle Magazine? In my post on multi-colored nails we saw CND’s version for the Kai Kuhne runway last February that they called a gradation. Either way I think it’s a fun play on the concept of a gradated manicure and much easier to replicate at home.
You may remember that I wore a gradated CalGel manicure at NY Fashion Week last season and while I loved the style, it’s not exactly DIY friendly. So I put my twist on ombre multi-colored nails with, what else, a green version. Check it out!
Products and Tools: Tips: Note: Because this is a demo I only mixed colors for my middle and ring fingers and left my thumb out. You will want to mix three shades for a full manicure. Ring finger mix: Start with 7 drops of Milf and add 1 drop of Orbis Non Suficit. For me, the color was darker than I wanted so I added one more drop of Milf.
The idea here is to custom blend varying shades of the same color, working across your hand from lightest to darkest. However I went a different route than the method suggested by InStyle. Rather than combine pure white polish into a dark lacquer, having to create 4 separate mixes, I chose a light green and a dark green with similar color traits and blended them to create the mid-tone hues. I selected Illamasqua Milf and RBL Orbis Non Suficit because they both have a slightly grayed, dusty quality to them and I wanted a muted look.
Illamasqua Milf Nail Lacquer
Rescue Beauty Lounge Orbis Non Suficit
Acrylic pigment jars (easily found on eBay or at craft stores)
Toothpicks (for mixing)
Clean nail polish brush. I used one from an empty polish bottle I bought for frankening.
*Have your nails prepped with base coat applied before beginning.
*Apply the polish as soon as it is mixed. Exposure to air will cause it to thicken quickly and dry shortly after.
*Mix the lightest color first and apply immediately before moving on.
*Clean your brush with remover between colors to avoid streaks from previously mixed polishes.
*Regarding my formulas below, I remove the brush from the bottle without wiping it against the sides and the amount that drips off equals one drop.
Products and Tools:
Note: Because this is a demo I only mixed colors for my middle and ring fingers and left my thumb out. You will want to mix three shades for a full manicure.
Ring finger mix: Start with 7 drops of Milf and add 1 drop of Orbis Non Suficit. For me, the color was darker than I wanted so I added one more drop of Milf.
So what do you think of this look? Is this something you’d be willing to try at home? If you’ve done a similar manicure, what shades did you use? I actually received a message from a reader, Sarah, who blended a gorgeous grayed purple version using OPI Siberian Nights and China Glaze Agent Lavendar. Share your creations in the comments!