Thursday, March 11, 2010

A boring (but cute) French (with a lil sparkle) that most of you will hate!

Last night I took off my polish and was trying to figure out what to do. I was feeling like I just wanted something soft and cute and pretty, but I'm really hating the way my nail-whites are looking as of late. (I think its because of this new vitamin regimen I have to do.) So I decided it was time to cover them up! I haven't done a French in forever, so I was pretty dubious.

I know that most people in the polish community think French manicures are boring, safe and lame. That's OK. Maybe I am those things - I'm certainly not a glitter-bomb holo-wearer. Even though not many people will be interested to see this manicure, I thought I'd share anyways. (What the heck right??)

I used:

Essie Waltz: 2 coats (for tips)
Essie Mademoiselle: 2 coats
Essie Tennis Corset: 1 coat

It's been overcast so its hard to see the gorgeousness that is Tennis Corset! Here is a better close-up shot:

A night shot from when it was freshly done:

I did this free-hand (I don't like guides...too fussy) so maybe it's not perfect but I really do like the way it came out! Exactly what I wanted - soft and easy, but with a little bit of sparkle. Plus it was really quick. I really loathe spending copius amounts of time on a mani (probably the reason I haven't ventured into Konad-land yet) but this was surprisingly fast!

Essie Waltz is my favourite for French tips because its not really stark so it looks more natural and less porn star. It's also easier to work with because errors are less obvious! Tennis Corset is a milky sheer white with the most amazing gold/green/red microglitter (not quite a shimmer, but not quite a glitter - shitter? (hah!) yes...glimmer is better). I didn't want my nails to look totally white, so using Mademoiselle under it adds a nice pink tint to my nails and goes on non-streaky so it's perfect.

Tennis Corset is one of my favourite polishes of all time - it is in fact the only one I have a back-up of and that's probably a good thing seeing as I haven't had it very long and I'm already 1/4 of the way through my first bottle! It adds that perfect secret sparkle and I can see myself wearing/loving it for a long time to come - even when I have a 'real' job ( that's ever going to happen...let me dream) because it is just subtle enough. It's great layered and I love it on it's own. Again, maybe this makes me boring, but hey, we like what we like!

So to combat my boringness, I am going to tempt you with an Essie Whack-a-Lemming I want to show you soon - my approximation of Essie Starry Starry Night!

Do you guys ever do French manicures? Do you use guides? What are your favourite colours for a French?


Like this? Click below to let us know!


TipsToToes said...

I love this! Stark french manicures look bad to me, but I like how this is soft looking and shimmery.

daydream222 said...

I've actually never done a French mani but your beautiful Frenchie makes me want to try it! Seriously, so pretty and soft and feminine. Love it.

sai said...

Nice manicure;)

I like french manicure but I seldom make it because my nails were so yellow...if I use a sheer base colour...all the yellow comes out=(

mKat said...

I think it looks pretty!

And yes... LOL all I ever did was french manis before I joined PoP. My go-to look was a french mani w/ a simple white nail decal on the ring fingers. Easy! (And it matched everything). I do use guides though...because I'm anal like that.

Stephanie said...

I really like this :) I rarely do French manicures, but when I do I usually use a white striper just to make life easier. I like to put something a little shimmery overtop to dull the white. Wet n Wild has these "Rock Solid" colors like Pink Diamonds or White Diamonds (or something like that) and they look really pretty on a French.

Grace said...

I used to do french manis all the time (always using guides because I have the shakiest hands in creation), but I haven't in a while. I have long nail beds and keep my nails pretty short, so not much of a free edge to bother with. I do love my milky pink sheers and Mademoiselle is an old favorite (though sometimes I go with Sugar Daddy for a cooler pink or Vanity Fairest for a little sparkle).

kittytokaren said...

Ah! I'm so surprised to get so many responses on this one!! Thanks for not revoking my blogger card for showing a French ladies!! <3

@TipsToToes - I don't like a stark French on me either...I already have blonde hair - I don't need to look any more like Barbie...and thanks :)

@daydream222 - Try it! It actually feels refreshing to me :)

@sai - I would try a rose-coloured sheer like Essie Anniversary Gala or something with a stronger pink tone than Mademoiselle - it would definitely combat against the yellow and could look quite nice!

@mKat - Thanks! I've never gotten along with guides - I feel like I do a better job working with my nail shape free-hand. Plus I always use something like Essie Waltz which is super forgiving.

@Stephanie - Yay! I'm glad you like it! I've never tried the striper - it scares me! And those WnWs sound really pretty!

@Grace - Yay for Mademoiselle! I have longish nailbeds too and if I'm being totally honest I made my whites larger in my French than they really are in reality...I'm a cheater.

<3 kittytokaren

Thess said...

Yep, I like it!
It is a neat, fresh and very calm manicure.

Get Nailed said...

I think this is SO cute. It's not very often you see a polish-freak with a french like this and NO stained nails underneath!

Kacey said...

Perhaps I'm in the minority here, but I love French manicures (along with the bold stuff too). It looks lovely on you! So fresh and simple :) I've been looking for my perfect french combo and have already settled on Mademoiselle... How does Waltz compare to Marshmallow?

Niki* said...

I think it looks pretty rad for a freehanded french :)

kittytokaren said...

@Thess - thanks, glad you like it!!

@Get Nailed - My nails aren't actually stained (thanks largely due to my usual basecoat - Barielle Hydrating Ridgefiller - I stopped getting stains once I started using that) but even if they were, you probably wouldnt see it. For this French I started with a base of Barielle Natural Nail Camouflage (I always wear it with sheers - they go on less streaky for some reason), then 2 layers of Mademoiselle and one of Tennis Corset - so it would be pretty hidden!! And thanks! I think its cute too!

@Kacey - Yay a french lover!! I don't do it a lot but when I do I always really like it! In my opinion, Marshmallow is more pearly/iridenscent than Waltz (just a little bit), whereas Waltz is more of a creamy colour, but still sheer. I prefer Waltz because it looks more like my natural tips, and my Waltz is old formula and I like how it applies, but tons of people love Marshmallow.

@Niki - Thanks friend! :)

<3 kittytokaren

Rhea said...

It looks really elegant! I like to do french manis occasionally.

Olivia C. said...

I love this- I have always loved French manicures, haha. :)

The Glitterati said...

Love love love! To me, this is barely even a French, it just looks like you have great nail beds, and slapped on a sheer. (Or maybe that's just how a well-executed French manicure looks!) Not having the perfect guide-line adds to the natural effect.

Thanks for the colour rec's too, I keep saying that one day I'll try my hand (har) at this, and the recs take out some of the legwork.

kittytokaren said...

@Rhea - thanks!

@Olivia C. - Really??? I thought there were very few French-lovers left! :) I think it can look super elegant!

@Gliterrati - I don't know if thats the proper way to do a French, but thats definitely what I was going for! For the whites I just followed my natural shape - you're right, I think that helps make it look more natural! And I vote yes to trying your hand (hehe) at a French - Essie is always a great bet for French shades.

<3 kittytokaren

mKat said...

...There's nothing wrong with porn star nails. :P

kittytokaren said...

Hahaha cause I really need to add porn star nails to my blonde hair and D's...I think my PI would respect me even less (if that was even possible)!!

Heidi said...

My nails are too stubby to pull off a french, but "back in the day" when they were long I enjoyed wearing one from time to time.

I find that I go through phases with my polishes; I just exited the blue phase and seem to be in the pink phase, because that's the color I'm always drawn to now. I also go through some intense Konading phases where that's all I want to do, then I don't want to see any nail art for awhile.

Personally, I don't think it matters what's in or what's out of favor; wear what makes you feel good!

kittytokaren said...

@Heidi - Couldn't have said it better - you are always so eloquent in your comments!!

mKat said...

@Heidi... I hear you. There are days when I don't want to bother with polish at all. :P

PolishedSheep said...

I really like it! I like both: Glittery and bold colors and french/soft. But I never managed a good french myself, somehow it's never accurate.

Your freehand looks by far better than my jig-tries. I won't even speak about my freehands ;)

SalvagedExpression said...

It looks so natural. Great job!

kittytokaren said...

@PolishedSheep - I get in modes where I like one style for a while (soft colours), then all I want to wear is darks, or bold colours. This was easier than you'd think...Waltz is really forgiving.

@SalvagedExpression - Thanks!!

gildedangel said...

That is super cute!

Arrianne said...

Sometimes I just wanna have porn star nails. =) I think Tennis Corset is really pretty. I prefer my french manis a little more jazzed up, (porn star-ish?) but this is a nice soft one. I'm just not a big sheer wearer. If you're gonna paint your nails you don't want them to look basically like your natural nails, na whatim sayin?

kittytokaren said...

@gilded - thanks love!

@Arrianne - Hey, some people can rock the porn star nails look - I am just not one of them! It's like large floral patterns - I just can't carry it off. Trust me, my natural nails look nothing like the above photo at the moment *sigh*...they need some major help! I'm planning on pampering them a little today! :)

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