Yes, “preppy tweed glitter.” Not words often heard together, but that’s what I’ve got up my sleeve today!
I’ve had a few questions lately about how to mix up glitter polishes. Right now, there are quite a few independent nail-polish frankeners selling small batches of polish online, particularly on Etsy. I’d probably be joining the fun, but I always seem to find myself living in an island country where most mail goes by air. It’s illegal to ship polish by air and there are steep fines for getting caught, and sea-mail takes months from Asia to anywhere. So for now I’ll just have to content myself with mixing polish and showing it to you guys!
Sometimes I want a glitter effect which is more muted rather than really super blingy or futuristic. For example, I like doing plaid and argyle designs, but doing them over a really shiny glitter would distract from the plaid detailing, so I need a glitter which will complement rather than compete with the design. A lot of times I’m looking for a kind of speckled base which is almost tweed-like in texture and color variation- especially in fall!
Probably easier to show you than explain!
When I make glitter polishes, I generally use a glitter polish as part of the base. In this case, I used China Glaze Ray-Diant, which I love.
Here’s what I got when I made a mix of 2/3 Ray-Diant, 1/3 clear polish, and various sprinklings of glitter:
The two in the middle probably would have benefitted from another coat, but I sometimes leave the glitter a little sparse if I’m going to be doing a lot of overpainting or decorating on the nails. The more glitter is applied, the harder the polish is to remove. Be warned.
If you have a glitter mix you want to add color to, you can also tint it a bit (as in the bottom swatch.) I wanted a deeper burgundy tint, so I added a few drops of LA Girl Plum Wine to the mixed glitter polish. You can tint with any color you like and it will generally give an interesting, slightly “milky” effect to the polish. I do recommend using the most translucent polishes possible. If you add an opaque colored polish to a glitter polish, you will get a clunky mess.
An alternative to tinting the glitter polish is to simply paint the nails with the opaque base color of your choice, then add a glitter topcoat. I do this sometimes, but I prefer to tint a glitter polish because it adds an interesting depth to the polish, since the glitter can show through under the surface.
I like this look in general when straight-up glitter would compete with a design too much, or just when I’m looking for something a little different. As always, experiment and have fun!