Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Nail Files - The Science? Art? of Frankenpolish

Have you heard of Frankenpolish?

Ok, it's like this...You know how in beauty magazines we often get the whole "I used this lip color and this lip color and this one to produce this fantastic look"? Yeah, i'm usually going, seriously? You get paid beaucoup bucks to do makeup and you can't find this color already out there? Ok, maybe I'm being a bit rude, but it does bug me when the answer to what color is that is a laundry list of lip products. And you know I'm lazy...I mean I like to use my time judiciously, so I am a 1-lip-product girl. One and done.

When it comes to nail polish, you can achieve similar effects. One way is to layer. I'll be honest - other than covering a bad pedi color with a darker polish, I don't do the nail polish layering thing. Why? Um...well...you see...my technique just isn't that great. That's why I always mani & pedi at night - so I can scrape the excess off in the shower next morning and go Voila! Decent mani/pedi!! I'm just not consistent enough with the application to do the layering thing. Kudos to those who can. Feel free to stop by anytime. :)

Frankenpolish, or "frankening", is mixing multiple polishes together to achieve a new shade. I'm sure some thrifty gals out there already do this...you might not even know it has a real name. For some full scoopage on frankenpolish, I will send you to my nail expert, as always, the All Lacquered Up blog. When cincyfan describes frankenpolish, she uses specific formulas...it's a science, much like baking. For me, it's more like regular cooking - it's art. Well, maybe not art, but it certainly isn't an exact science. I like the idea of frankening because it's a great way to use those polishes that just aren't what you wanted them to be, or you've had too long to return, or you just don't wear anymore, etc. As much polish as I buy (I know it's an addiction, but it's cheaper than designer handbags)...

The process itself, for me, is pretty simple. You can get an empty polish bottle - I think Sally Beauty sells them. Or you can use an existing bottle - esp if you love love love the brush (yes, I'm talking about OPI). If you use an existing bottle, start by dumping out about half of the polish in there and then just add other shades & mix until you get something you like. I find it handy to have a white plastic plate or white paper with tape on it to test out my mixes.

HUGE caveat - please read - if you are going to do this - remember these are chemicals, folks. Be careful with mixing. And only mix polishes of the same brand. And, um, if you pour out excess polish onto a plastic plate, eventually, it will eat through that plate. (I don't even want to think about the implications of that...) So when you dump out, put down some paper towels to absorb.

This probably works best if you have a variety of extra polish to choose from. I decided to give it another go after I went through my polish again and had a huge stash of get-rid-of's. This one...I really love. It's perfect (for me). It's like a glittery version of OPI You Don't Know Jacques. (all of the following are OPI) I took last year's Brand New Skates (gray with sparkle - but never the right shade - too dark or too light or too blue), added a whole lot of this year's Holiday Glow (way too brown for me), and then a bit of Sand in My Suit (gold-tan metallic) and Up Close & Personal (gold sparkle). And here is the result:

Give it a try...


Summerilla said...

Very pretty color!! I never saw the "Brand New Skates" color but I bet I would have loved it just for it's name! I've never tried the mixing but now I want to.
I do often layer. I have a lot of colors that go on way too light and need a ton of coats and I'm too lazy for all that waiting to dry and reapplying business.... so I have the OPI "Chocolate Moose" which is a nice neutral and I use that first to give me a good base and then I use the light color over top.

I just love how much you are in to polishes. Every time I see a chip in my nail polish I think "I better fix that Heidi would never approve". It really makes me keep up with my mani/pedi maintenance and I thank you for that!

melissamolasses said...

I must admit that it never occurred to me to mix polishes. Fabulous idea for when a color is drastically different from the bottle to the toes!

May I make a request to see IRL photos of the Dream Knox sweater-jacket?

HeidiG said...

Summerilla - you would probably love Brand New Skates - I bet it would totally work with your skintone. Glad I'm keeping you on your toes (hehe) regarding polish maintenance!

melissa molasses - I will try to post pics in the next day or two of the Knox sweater-jacket. I don't have any "outfit" pics yet, just the "tried it on with my usual tee & jeans after I got home" pic. But if you really want to see it, email me at heidigblog(at)verizon(dot)net, and I'll be happy to forward the pic to you. I do love it - very warm, but not too heavy - an impressivley tight knit compared to a lot of other JC sweaters - so not so easy to pull.

Anonymous said...

Great idea to mix nail polish colors!

gigiofca said...

I love that color. Nice!

HeidiG said...

Rosa in DC & gigiofca - Thanks for visiting, ladies!