Hi everyone! I have a new manicure today that features gradient French tips done using the “glitter sandwich” technique, which is an incredibly simple and easy process. It’s so simple and easy, in fact, that I can make glitter sandwich nails even when my life gets crazy, as it will be for this entire month! Like I said in my last post, don’t expect elaborate or frequent nail art from me until November because I have a TON of things to do until then, and nail art is simply not high on my priority list. Nail art for me is a fun hobby – and a welcome respite from work-related stress – but I know my limits, and will have to cut back a bit temporarily.
I removed my previous manicure a little sooner than I may have liked because I had to go to an event this weekend with a conservative dress code, and I just didn’t feel comfortable going in gray and red nails. This glitter sandwich manicure is a relatively subdued and demure way to wear nail art, while still being fun and sparkly. And, of course, the fact that it is soooo easy to do is quite appealing. I’d highly recommend trying to do a glitter sandwich manicure if you’re a nail art beginner, and/or you want your nails to look subdued while still trying out glitter in nail art. The glitter sandwich was actually one of the techniques I learned in the very beginning of my nail art hobby, and the very first photo I ever took of my nails uses this technique. I’ve included the photo in this post as a throwback, just so you can see how far I’ve come. I’m almost too embarrassed to post it, but I’m gonna do it!
Glitter sandwich manicures are for sure one of the easiest nail art looks to accomplish ever. You don’t need much precision or control with the implements you use (in this case, a Q-tip); the equipment you need is minimal; and there are only a few, quick steps involved in creating this cute look. It’s so easy I didn’t bother making a tutorial for it, but I will describe how to do it. The things you’ll need, other than base coat and top coat, are: a sheer polish, a glitter polish, and a Q-tip. That’s it! I used L’Oreal Wishful Pinking as the sheer polish (my favorite French manicure-type polish), and Spoiled Jewelry Heist as the glitter. Spoiled, which is made by Wet n Wild, makes some pretty great cheap glitter polishes, and I highly recommend them as toppers for other polishes. Jewelry Heist is a pretty blend of gold and rosy pink hexes, lilac small hexes, and small iridescent squares. I like this glitter polish for its mild color palette; jarring glitter can be rather off-putting to me.
You begin by painting a few coats of the sheer polish. Paint one less coat than you normally would if you were going to paint your nails with only that color. Since I usually paint 3 coats of L’Oreal Wishful Pinking on, I would start with 2 for the glitter sandwich. Then, take the Q-tip and paint some of the glitter polish onto it. Use the Q-tip to dab the glitter onto the tips of your nails, concentrating most of the glitter at the tips. The best way to diffuse the glitter upwards is to begin dabbing the glitter on at the nail tips, when most of the glitter is still on the Q-tip, and then move up the nail once most of it has been deposited. Once you’re satisfied with the amount of glitter on your nails, put on one more coat of sheer polish, and you’re done! The final layer of sheer polish has the effect of muting the shine of the glitter to the point where it’s not blingy, but the glitter can still reflect light softly when illuminated. It also serves to blend the glitter nicely into the base color. To show you the difference that the final sheer polish layer makes, I took a photo in which some of my nails have the sheer coat, and some don’t:
Big difference, right? I vastly prefer the glitter sandwich effect to having the glitter be in-your-face. It’s really soft and subtle, while still catching the light and being, well, interesting.
As I said in the beginning of this post, the very first manicure that I photographed was a glitter sandwich manicure, so glitter sandwiches and I go way back. Back to March of 2013, apparently, because that’s when I took this photo. I actually used similar polishes to the ones I used in my current manicure: L’Oreal Wishful Pinking (can you tell how much I love this polish?) and Spoiled I Have No Reception (small silver glitter). My nail art game and cuticle health have improved by leaps and bounds since a year and a half ago, so looking back at this photo is a little jarring for me. I kind of cringe every time I look at this photo since my cuticles terrify me. Brace yourselves!
AAAAHHHH (*screams*)!!! EWW THOSE CUTICLES EWWWWWW!!! Those things are NASTY. Uggghhhhh (*shudder*). Yep, this is Emi’s Manis circa a year and a half ago. Things have only gone up for my nails since this point. While my polishing job doesn’t look too terrible, my cuticles look like something out of a horror movie. I hadn’t discovered cuticle care yet, if that isn’t obvious; now I use Burt’s Bees Lemon Cuticle Balm to prevent this awful skin damage. And I’m sure that my nails underneath the manicure look just as terrible as my cuticles. This is back when I used to remove my nail polish by chipping it all off, which is one of the worst possible thing you can ever do to your nails, so they would flake and peel all the time. My nails at this point were also considerably shorter than they are now; you can’t see it as much in this photo, but in other ones it’s more obvious. I used to keep them short and stubby, but I grew them out gradually since I liked the look of slightly longer nails that extend past my finger tips by just a bit. I grew them out gradually enough so that my nail beds have actually grown out a little bit to support the increased length. I like the length they’re at right now: not too long, which would impede the functionality of my fingers, but not too short either. I’m quite happy with my nails now, thanks to me being more vigilant with nail care, and exerting more impulse control when it comes to chipping nail polish.
My, my. I have come far indeed.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this post, and that I didn’t scare you with my old photo! Thanks for reading!