I'm sure you've heard of and seen images of the monarch butterfly migration. It is truly an amazing feat, and when these gorgeous butterflies congregate in the forests of Mexico I imagine it is breathtaking. I wanted to do a monarch butterfly inspired mani today, and although it may be a bit abstract, I think I accomplished my goal.
The idea started last night when I was planning what I would do. I wanted to use my MoYou plates, which I've been practicing with here and there since my first attempt, and I chose the butterfly image from the Pro Collection (#05). From there everything else just fell into place, and I decided to attempt my first ever gradient manicure! I started with one coat of white to make sure the colors would pop, and then two coats of Sally Hansen Lemon Shark. After this, I applied some Elmer's glue around my nails to (hopefully) make the clean up easier. Like I said, this was my first gradient mani so I didn't really know what would work best for me. I thought this looked kinda funny, and kinda like breakfast, so I had to document it. :P
Then I used a makeup sponge with Lemon Shark and Sally Hansen Sun Sheen on it to sponge on the gradient. I had looked at a lot of different tutorials and videos, but I basically ended up doing what Sammy over at the Nailasaurus suggested. After the sponging, it looked pretty good if I do say so myself.
To really make the gradient nice and smooth (and to add some sparkle on top of Lemon Shark so it would go better with Sun Sheen which is very sparkly), I applied a thin coat of Spoiled by Wet n' Wild Vitamin C. This polish (not pictured below) is sparkly orange and fairly sheer so it just made the yellow a little more orangey. Once that dried, I stamped on the butterflies using OPI Black Onyx. I think I will end up investing in Konad black and white polish as suggested by many reviews and tutorials I've read. The stamping turned out fine, but it's not as opaque as it could be and the polish did this weird oil and water type separating thing. The only other issue with the stamping isn't related to the polish, but just to the size of the image relative to my nails, and the position of the image once I stamped it... like I said at the beginning, I think it ended up being a bit more abstract than an obvious "Hey, you've got butterflies on your nails!" but that's fine by me :)
I hope you like this as much as I do!