Today’s post features nail vinyls from What’s Up Nails, which Nail Polish Canada (NPC) kindly sent to me. Thank you so much for the opportunity to try these out! First off, I have to acknowledge that this post is long overdue – specifically, 4 months overdue. The vinyls arrived at my house in May, while I was on my blogging break and wasn’t even painting my nails. For my wedding, I had gotten Shellac done on my nails, and wanted the Shellac to grow out naturally after the wedding. This meant I wasn’t able to test out the vinyls until the Shellac had completely grown out. By the time our honeymoon rolled around (two months after the wedding), the shellac STILL hadn’t grown out fully! I ended up getting fed up and removing them myself right before we left for the honeymoon (please don’t try this at home) because the regrowth bothered me so much. After returning from our trip, I FINALLY had a chance to sit down to use these. Regardless of why it took me so long to get this post up, I do have to apologize for not testing these out sooner.
Nail Polish Canada not only to let me pick out one set of vinyls, but 3! I chose the regular chevron design, the mermaid scales, and the X-pattern design, which retail for $5.95 each on the website. The mermaid scales and X-pattern vinyls come in 12 squares, while the regular chevron comes in 90 strips. Since this blog post was going to be my first time attempting to use the vinyls, I wasn’t sure how adept I would be at them. I decided to first try the one that looked the most simple to use for my first attempt, which was the regular chevron.
This is what the vinyls look like up close in the packaging. Vinyls are essentially stickers that help to create patterns on the nails when you apply polish to them. Besides the nail vinyls, these were the supplies I used:
- Essie Base Coat
- Salley Hansen Hard as Nails Xtreme Wear Nail Polish in Mauve Over
- ILNP Nail Lacquer in Flower Girl
- Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Top Coat
- Scissors (optional)
In the last year and a half, I’ve cut down my nail polish collection significantly, and only have about two dozen shades remaining. Shocking for a beauty blogger, no?! Anyways, this means I didn’t have a ton of polish combinations to choose from. I ended up with ILNP’s Flower Girl, a soft pink holographic shade, and Sally Hansen’s Mauve Over, a deep mauve in a crème finish. I love Flower Girl because it looks very natural in indoor lighting, so it’s perfect for work:
But when you see it in sunlight:
Oh, the holographic glitter! Be still, my heart.
The What’s Up vinyls come with very clear instructions on the packaging, but I thought I would share some observations and tips I picked up when trying these out.
1. Apply your base coat and base colour as you normally would. TIP: The instructions suggest to use a top coat on top of your base colour, and I would highly recommend this. I first tested out the vinyls without a top coat over my base colour, and when I peeled them off my nails, the base colour came off with it even though I had waited until my polish dried down. When I tried it again with the top coat, my polish didn’t peel off with the vinyls.
2. Next step is to apply the vinyls to your nails. This is what the regular chevron vinyls look like once they’ve been peeled from the backing.
TIP: I found that when I applied the vinyls onto my nails as they come in the package, the vinyl doesn’t adhere perfectly to the curve of my nails. This leaves a gap between the vinyl and the sides of my nails, thus giving the second colour room to seep into the gap and ruin the pattern. I found that it helped substantially to cut the vinyl short enough so that the sides are just barely extended past the sides of your nails. The shorter sides really help to mold the vinyls closer to the nails.
This is what the shortened vinyls look like applied to the nail:
3. After putting the vinyls in place, apply your second polish over the entire nail. Ensure that it opaque enough to cover the first shade.
4. Immediately peel the vinyl off after applying the second polish shade. This is what my nails looked like after:
Yikes! Seeing this result, I was like “umm…so that was a big fail.” Peeling the vinyls off created ridges where the second shade ended and the first shade began, and it just looked really bad in general. I kind of wanted to see how this would turn out before removing and trying it all over again, so I waited for the polish to dry and then applied a top coat. This is what it looked like after once the top coat settled:
It’s interesting how much better it looked once the top coat was applied. It’s almost like the top coat helped the layers melt together while still keeping the distinct lines between the two shades. I felt like Mauve Over could have been a little more opaque and then lines a little sharper, but the results are more due to user error than anything. I’m the type of person who can’t do any type of nail art – I even suck at using nail wraps (my very first blog post on nail wraps was only a moderate success). Despite not having much luck with nail art, I would give the results a score of 85%, which isn’t bad for a first try! I feel like the vinyls are the type of product that you get better results from as you continue practicing with them.
My overall thoughts on the What’s Up nail vinyls are that were easier to use than anticipated. To me, they took a bit of work so I would only use it on an accent nail and not on all of my fingernails at the same time. For those interested in doing basic nail art without wanting to attempt it freehand, I would recommend giving these a try!
Have any of you ever used vinyls before? What was your experience with them?