I stumbled upon a tutorial on Stylelist, inspired by the nails on the Jen Kao Spring 2012 runway, and just knew I had to give it a try. So, let’s just see how easy it really is!
Aside from the prep work (emery board, nail polish remover, you know…), you’ll need a base coat, two nail lacquers in the same color family, one light and one dark, and a clear top coat.
Step 1: Trim and file nails into your desired length and shape. As you can see, I like mine as short as can be! Then apply a base coat.
Step 2: Start with the darker shade (I went with dark purple), and paint from the cuticle base up to the halfway point of your nail. Don’t worry about making a perfect line. Remember, you’re going to smear this at the end, so embrace the sloppy factor.
Step 3: Swipe your lighter shade (I love this greyish lavender from OPI) from the middle to the tip.
Step 4: This is the most important, and fun, part! Before your polish has dried (this is crucial!), brush a layer of clear top coat from cuticle to tip to blend the two shades. Let dry.
Voila! Ombre nails, without an airbrush or a salon.
Feel free to experiment with different color combos; I know I’m already eyeing some of the greens I have in my collection…
(Runway photos courtesy of CND)