Advent Calendar Day 23 – Rudolph

I’m not all that great at painting faces on my nails, so this was a bit of a challenge for me.  I ended up finding this tutorial and just going with that.  Other than taking kind of a long time, these nails were pretty easy.


The base on all my nails is Zoya Harley, which I just discovered and now love!  For me, silver polish can be a bit too flashy, so this is definitely perfect for those days that call for silver nails.  For Rudolph, I used Sinful Colors Black on Black, Sally Hansen Slick Slate, Essie Beyond Cozy, and China Glaze Ruby Pumps.



Isn’t he cute?

I can’t believe tomorrow is the last day of the challenge, and Christmas eve!  I still haven’t decided which mani I’m recreating for tomorrow, so if you have any suggestions, let me know!

Advent Calendar Day 22 – Fruitcake

Ok, I have to admit, today’s theme totally stumped me.  How is one supposed to make their nails look like fruitcake?  Christmas pudding nails, I’ve seen, but fruitcake?  Plus, it’s not really something my family is into, so I think the last time I’ve actually seen a fruitcake outside of a box, I was like eight at the oldest.  I actually had to look up pictures.

fruit cake

These were inspired by a picture of a bundt-shaped fruitcake decorated with red and green maraschino cherries (at least that’s what I think they are).  It was kind of pretty with the shiny cherries against the dark brown cake, and I thought it would make for a relatively easy mani.

I started with two coats of OPI Get in the Espresso Lane (it’s seriously the only true brown polish I own), and then made even numbers of small dots in a circle with OPI Alpine Snow, so that the cherries would be shiny in the middle.  For the red and green, I used OPI Vodka & Caviar and Essie Pretty Edgy.  For the most part, I like how it turned out, though I would probably do a few things differently next time.

fruit cake

The last day of the challenge (Monday) is “recreate your favorite Christmas mani” day, so I’m asking all of you: which mani would you like to see recreated?

Advent Calendar Day 21 – Water Marble

I hate water marbling.  It looks amazing when other people do it, but it’s just really not something I enjoy doing, especially when the payoff looks like this.  I was thisclose to skipping today’s challenge post, but I was in a good mood, which meant that I had a picture of this gorgeous water marble in my head that was going to magically appear on my nails.  Needless to say, I don’t think Christmas magic applies to nail art.  I don’t really think it’s all that bad, though.  I actually kind of like the messed up ones best – they look like real marble.

christmas water marble

If you want to know how to do water marbles, I’m not the one to teach you, so go look up some youtube videos.

I really wanted to do a Christmassy one, so I used OPI Alpine Snow, OPI Jade is the New Black, and China Glaze Adventure Red-y.  I kind of wish I had thrown in some gold, but I wasn’t going to redo these no matter what they looked like (plus, I was out of tape, which makes clean up way easier).

christmas water marble

Ok, I don’t want to have to look at these anymore.  But, good news is, there will be another post in a bit for you to enjoy, and some more Christmas manis for the next few days!

The last day of the challenge is “recreate your favorite holiday mani” day.  I’m having trouble deciding, so I need your help: which mani do you think I should recreate (excluding this one, obviously)?

Advent Calendar Day 20 – Sweets & Candy

These are kind of “meh.”  I don’t hate them, but I don’t really like them all that much, either.  But I wanted to do peppermint candy swirl nails, so here they are.  I wish I had spaced them better to get five swirls on each nail, but oh, well.

candy nails

I used OPI Alpine Snow and Essie Headmistress.  I started with a white base and then painted on the red swirls with a medium-length striping brush.

candy nails

I probably should have gone more simple and just done a candy cane design, but I’m glad I attempted this.  Tomorrow’s Advent Calendar post is an even more epic fail – water marbles are not my thing.

Advent Calendar Day 19 – Ugly Sweater

I don’t know if this is really an “ugly sweater,” because I think it’s kind of pretty.  But it works.  I have been obsessed with fair isle patterns since I learned how to knit them (yay me!) so I wanted something reminiscent of that, but still simple.  I actually started with a little more detail on these, but covered it up because it was too much.

christmas sweater

I used Essie Size matters, which is a gorgeous berry red from last year’s winter collection, for the base.  I wanted something a bit different than the usual red and white color combo that is used for patterns like these, so I went with Sally Hansen Mint Sorbet.  This year, I’ve been loving the mint and red combo (with bits of pink) as a twist on the classic red and green Christmas colors.

christmas sweater

I think these turned out pretty well.  I really like the star/snowflake/flower on my index finger.  I used a trick I found on Pintrest of making a square first, dividing it into eight sections, and then adding the points, which made it super easy.

Advent Calendar Day 18 – Something Classic

I had a lot of ideas for today, but I ultimately decided to take my inspiration from Victorian Christmas, and this is what I ended up with.  For those of you who don’t know, Christmas as we know it (big and commercial) began during Queen Victoria’s reign.  It was very traditional and elaborate.  So I went with muted colors and a somewhat simple design.

victorian christmas

The polishes I used are Orly Decades of Dysfunction, OPI Thanks a Windmillion, Essie Size Matters, and Finger Paints Tough Art to Follow, with some Sally Hansen White On and Orly Mirror Mirror mixed in to help mute or lighten some of the colors.

victorian christmas

I really love how these turned out!  I might just be doing these again before Christmas.

Advent Calendar Day 17 – Inspired by a Christmas Movie

When I was probably about eight, I was home sick from school and spending the day at my grandparents’ house while my mom ran errands.  My grandma sat me down and made me watch A Christmas Story, and I have loved it ever since.  Definitely one of my favorite Christmas movies!  I knew immediately that’s what I wanted to do for this challenge.

a christmas story

On my pointer finger, I stamped a fishnet pattern and then painted on the black outlines to portray the infamous “leg lamp.”  On my ring finger is my personal favorite part of the movie, the pink bunny suit.  I wanted to keep it a little simple, so I painted icicles on the rest of my nails (“You’ll shoot your eye out kid!”).

a christmas story

What’s your favorite Christmas movie?

Advent Calendar Day 16 – Inspired by a Christmas Song

This one was kind of a no-brainer for me.  It was inspired by my favorite Christmas song, that I have loved since I was a kid: “I Want a Hippopotamus for Christmas.”  It’s such a cute song, and I thought it would be much more creative and interesting than if i had gone with my other idea: “Silver and Gold.”

I want a hippopotamus for Christmas

The base is Essie Mojito Madness.  The hippo is all polish (no acrylic paints).  Let me know if you want to know about a specific color.  I really like how this turned out, especially since I am terrible at drawing faces.

And here’s the song.  Isn’t it amazing? 🙂

P.S. Because of my love for this song, I have received more than a couple of hippo toys over the years haha

Advent Calendar Day 15 – Something Cozy

I actually had a bit of a hard time coming up with something for today’s post.  For me, cozy means a cup of tea in front of the fire with a blanket and a book or some knitting (if you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably seen some of my knitting).  So I decided to attempt something I’ve been wanting to try for a while – knit nails!  I really wanted to use this stamping plate (isn’t it awesome?), but it’s not here yet.  So I attempted some freehand “knitted” nails.  I kind of love them.


After several attempts, I discovered that the best way to do these is to paint the lines in between the stitches, rather than the stitches themselves.  So I started with a base of OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls and then painted on the lines with Orly Mirror Mirror.  What is cozier than a white winter knit?

I have to say, this is one of those times where these look a million times better from a normal distance, rather than a close up picture.  So take a few steps back to fully enjoy the effect of these.  Also, try not to focus on the lines, focus on the white parts so you can actually see the “stitches.”


I am so glad I gave these a try!  I’ve been planning them in my head for months, but was never brave enough to do them.  They did take forever, though, and I am crazy excited to get that stamping plate!  No joke, I will probably use it like every day for a few weeks.  Sorry 🙂

Edit: Today the nail blogging community is doing white nails in remembrance of the tragedy in Newtown, CT yesterday.  Since these are white, I thought I dedicate them to children who lost their lives yesterday, and to their families and friends whose lives will never be the same.  Please don’t make this political (at least on this blog) – just be content with remembering the innocent lives that were lost.

nails for newtown

Advent Calendar Day 14 – Glitter

You all know I’m not a huge glitter fan, but since I do have at least three glitters that are definitely “Christmas glitters,” I was actually excited to use them for this challenge.  I couldn’t really get a good picture of this (sorry!), but it looked great in real life.  Kind of reminded me of Victorian Christmas colors.

christmas glitter

For the base of these, I used OPI Thanks a Windmillion.  The glitter is F4 Polish Miracle on 34th Street (named after one of my favorite Christmas movies).  I probably should have stopped at one coat, but I wanted to do a gradient, so here it is.

christmas glitter

What is your favorite “holiday” glitter?