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#ManiMonday – Gradient Striped Nail Art with Essie Summer 2014

Essie Summer 2014 - Gradient Stripes for #ManiMonday

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Happy Monday! I hope your weekend was as enjoyable as mine. The boyfriend was away which called for a girls night at my house, some retail therapy and a Sunday Funday/Father’s Day in the pool at my parents’ house. It’s a rough life, I tell ya!

Being out in the summer sun has me craving brights which led me to the new Essie Summer 2014 collection. As I was swatching Urban Jungle, I thought of what a great base color it is for nail art and so my #ManiMonday was born.

Essie Urban Jungle is a pink-tinged, creamy white that is extremely smooth and pigmented. It’s like the pink version of OPI My Vampire Is Buff which I know nail artists, like Sarah from Chalkboard Nails, love for nail art.

Starting with a base of Urban Jungle, I applied Striping Tape (Amazon.com) in a flared pattern starting at the lower right corner of my nails. I then painted a makeup sponge with stripes of Essie Ruffles and Feathers (green) and Essie Strut Your Stuff (blue) before pressing it over the tape to create a gradient.

Outside of the base color dry time and cleanup, it’s a pretty fast and painless process.

Essie Summer 2014 Nail Art
Application Tips:

  • Pre-cut your striping tape and apply to all nails first.
  • Apply balm (I use Smith’s Rosebud) or cuticle oil to the skin before sponging to make cleanup easier.
  • Dampen the sponge, but squeeze well, to avoid it sucking up all the polish.
  • Wait for the first gradient coat to dry before applying a second or it can pull up the color.
  • Have a pair of tweezers handy to remove the tape. I like the mini ones from Urban Beauty United.
  • Use a top coat like HK Girl or Seche Vite to avoid smearing.
  • These colors can stain skin but Orly Cutique instantly removes any traces of Smurf fingers.

Essie Summer 2014 Gradient Nail Art

Essie Ruffles & Feathers and Strut Your Stuff Nail Art

Essie Summer 2014 Gradient Nail Art

The Essie Summer 2014 collection is available now at salons and mass retailers nationwide and online at Nordstrom.com. Essie nail polish retails for $8.50/ea.

Have you picked up any of the Essie summer colors yet? What are you wearing on this Mani Monday? I’d love to see so tag me on Instagram or Twitter to share.


Disclosure: Product samples were provided by reps for Essie. Affiliate links appear in this post. When you purchase through an affiliate link, you help support this site. For more info view my Disclosure Policy
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There Are 22 Brilliant Comments

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  1. Lisa N. says:

    That is a fun striping tape design. I love the gradient too.

  2. Aprill says:

    Very beautiful, it makes me think of a dress for some strange reason. :)

  3. Megan says:

    Looks nice but way too much work for something that is going to be chipped in a few days.

  4. tahkiya says:

    Thank you for the tip on the ombre colors. I could not figure out how to do that. I kept messing mine up. It didnt come to me about damping the sponge first.

  5. Medusa says:

    I’d be really interested to see a video of how you do this manicure.

  6. Tricia says:

    This is gorgeous! Blue and green together are one of my favorite color combos. I love the way you did the stripes! I’m gonna have to try this! It won’t last on me, either. I’m lucky if my nail polish makes it 24 hours. It won’t stop me from doing this cute manicure anyway, though!

  7. This is cute, love the design.

  8. LaraLeaf says:

    I love the design – the gradient over the white. Beautiful polish selection. I have been debating getting Strut Your Stuff – I love how bright aqua it is.

    My manicures last way longer than I want them to! I start getting the itch to change out my polish after two to three days, regardless of whether I swatched or did a design. However, every once in awhile, one turns out that delights me so much that I let it endure for a week. (About this time, my husband puts his hand on my forehead, asking if I am okay!) I long ago used to think that nails that chip after one or two days were the result of combinations of work-related, lack of faithful cuticle care, not making sure nails were polish-ready by swiping them with acetone first, peeling nails, etc. But I have become convinced that one major factor is just plain body chemistry. I have a friend who I know has the basic nail routine I have and she cannot go to a third day without chipping. She used to have fits when she saw me go a week w/o them. lol, Now she laughs and says mine only last two or three days anyway since I change them out so frequently! But I do feel grateful that I can go a week on those occasions when I want to.

  9. Judi Webster says:

    Love this design!!! Did gradients my last mani & got lots of compliments!! Next time will add the stripes :)

  10. Michelle Spencer says:

    I love these colours a lot. Essie is one if my favorite brands, mostly because of their small brush. Was there another colour in the collection?

  11. Alicia says:

    Looks great!!! I love these colors!

  12. Anna says:

    Gorgeous summer colours! I would have been tempted to matify them though

  13. Lena says:

    wow love this idea michelle! definitely going to try this one out!

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