Sunday, June 30, 2013

How Rugged is your Top Coat? (Hollywood Glamour Mani)

I never realized how funny it would be to start a blog, especially when you realize you are basically talking to empty space! I can almost hear an echo! Anyway, for those of you who are reading, you will be glad to know that I survived Rugged Maniac! Don't ask me how, but I am currently at my computer (covered in bruises, aches, and pains) in full blog mode, so that must mean that I somehow survived the race! My friends took some pretty awesome pictures of me covered in dirt and mud, so as soon as I get those, I will be sure to post a few. Anyway despite the heat, the race was totally awesome and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a really good work out and a fun time with friends!

But now, let's get to the nail stuff! So I know a few days ago I said I wasn't going to do my nails because I was participating in a 5k obstacle run. However, every time I looked down at my bare nails I felt  naked! I changed my mind and came up with this design on Friday night. 

The color I used for my base coat is Maybelline Color Show's, Twilight Rays. This polish is awesome  and its from one of my favorite collections (Maybelline Color Show). Simply put, Twilight Rays is a black nail polish with tiny flakes that shift from gold to rose gold.  On top of Twilight Rays, I stamped the star design using Konrad's gold polish which matched the sparkles in Twilight Ray's perfectly. The star designs come from the Salon Express's nail plates (SE-20). For my ring fingers I used Paris from Sinful Colors, and finally on top of the gold glitter, black nail tape which I purchased on amazon.

I love using nail tape (especially for french manicures) because it creates clean crisp lines, really making a manicure look professionally done. One complaint I have about most nail tapes is that the colors  tend to bleed once a top coat is placed over them. Has anyone else ever experience this? You can sort of see this in the photos. I used black nail tape for this manicure which turned into a sort of silvery gray after I painted on my top coat. The only tape color that does not bleed is the silver one. I think this might be because most nail tapes are manufactured in silver and then painted with other colors. Also, while nail tape is an actual tape (one side of it is sticky), it doesn't tend to stick to nails for very long. I have found that with only one coat of topcoat, nail tape will begin to peel at the edges after the first two days of being worn. To get it to stay longer, I sometimes apply nail glue to the edges or extra top coats to prevent the nail tape from peeling up.
Anyway, to make this mani a little more interesting, I thought I would do a little experiment to see what top coats in my collection would survive Rugged Maniac. I am pretty picky when it comes to top coats and try to stick to well known, reputable brands. Therefore, in my collection my favorite topcoats are by Seche Vite, Revlon, and Sally Hansen. I tend to use Seche Vite a lot because it dries super fast and with a nice glossy finish.

Unfortunately, I ran out of my Revlon top coat so for this experiment I used Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat and Sally Hansen No Chip Top Coat. For my pinky and middle fingers I used two coats of Seche Vite and for my ring and pointer fingers I used two coats of Sally Hansen. This is another picture of my nails on Friday, before the race.
Both top coats gave me a nice shiny, glass finish.....and this is a picture of my nails on Saturday night, after the race.
As you can see in the photos, I would say both top coats had an equal number of chipping and wear around the tops of my nails. There are chips on both the pointer finger and middle finger of about equal size. In all honesty, both top coats held up pretty well through the water obstacles, mud pools, and mud crawling I had to do for the race. All in all, I would say both of these top coats are pretty darn rugged!

Sinful Colors - Paris
Maybelline Color Show - Twilight Rays
Konad - Gold 
Nail Tape (Amazon)

Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat 
Sally Hansen No Chip Top Coat


  1. Ii love the design!

    A tip for nail tape when doing stripes: I paint whatever colour I want on my nail then I put on the nail tape in whatever pattern I want then paint the second colour over the top then immediately remove the nail tape. You see the undercoat lines through the top coat polish. Example, you paint the nail with Twilight Rays, put on the nail tape, paint the Paris on top then pull the tape.

    You should use tweezers to remove the tape and have a paper towel handy to put the used tape on. I've never used nail tape on a design like you did here so I don't know about the staining.

    And lastly, you don't need 2 coats of seche vite. One will do and more just makes your nails look thicker.

    You do a really nice job on your nails!

  2. That's a really good idea.I'm definitely going to try using the tape to do designs. Thanks!