Monday, April 27, 2009

Nailene French Manicure Kit

I'm sure you all know by now how I feel a bout french manicures, so I won't get into that in this post. :)

Despite my feelings about french manicures, I get a surprising amount of emails and requests for them! So, when I received the opportunity to try out some french manicure kits from Nailene, I thought it would be the perfect chance to address all of those requests.

This is the first kit I tried. It includes a clear topcoat, an opaque white creme, a sheer pinky beige and a sheer warm pink with blue duochrome plus 42 tip guides.

Since guides were included in the kit, I used them for these french manicures.

Please excuse the 'bruises' on my nails. French manicures aren't ideal for hiding them!

For this manicure, I placed the tip guides on my nail after my base coat was completely dry. I painted one coat of the opaque white over my tips, waited for it to dry and then removed the tip guides. I used two coats of the sheer pink beige on top and I sealed it with the included topcoat.

Here's the same manicure with a few decals from the Nailene Bedazzle line.

For this look, I started with white tips and then applied two coats of the sheer pink with blue duochrome and sealed it with the included topcoat. Since this polish has a little more color than the other one, it caused the white tips to appear yellow. Normally, I would start by painting tips first, but for this shade I would recommend doing the tips last.

Here's what it looks like with the white on top instead:

I should point out the difficult part of doing the white tips second while trying to use the guides. I'm sure you've all experienced it before. If you try to place the guides on top of an already polished nail, they will often peel off the polish when you remove them. You can remedy this a little bit by removing some of the stickiness from the guides. Put them on the back of your hand once or twice- it causes them to become less strong and sticky and reduces the chances that it will peel off the polish on your nails. You also should wait until the base polish is 100% dry before attempting to use guides on top.

And here it is with a Bedazzle decal:

This decal was a little too stiff and wouldn't lie flat on my nail. You can see in the photo that the edges of the decal are sticking up and visible. It may have been too cold out when I tried to apply the decal- it might become more flexible if you warmed the sheet between your hands or near something warm first.

This kit was extremely straight forward and easy to use. It would be perfect for beginners and people experimenting with the french manicure look. People looking for a more natural looking french may not be satisfied with the white tip polish included in this kit because it is very bright and stark.

If you're looking for a more natural french manicure look, try using two coats of the sheer pink beige color as your tip color and then one coat of it as your base color. Alternately, you could add some white and sheer pink into the clear topcoat to create a custom tip color.

Nailene French Manicure Kits can be purchased at any drugstore.


  1. Thank you!
    I know French manicures aren't really your "thing" so this has a special significance lol. Thanks for showing the decals ^^. I was having problems figuring out what to do with them, especially as my pack contains confusing clusters and petals and various other flowery pieces. I like the ascending flower design. It is simple but elegant. I had fears that my "design" would turn into a flowery mess. And now I know that I don't have to decal ALL of my nails. I think I would prefer focusing a design on my ring fingers and thumbs. Thank you very much for your time displying all these wonderful polishes and designs ^^

  2. I think I can leave this kind of comment here - but me no likes. It reminds me of all those stupid girls with french manis with flower decal which is not at all how I picture you. Seriously. Do some color:)

  3. Agirlnamedflo, Haha thank you! Less is definitely more when it comes to decals. I'm not really very artistic so I can never come up with designs, but a nice accent always looks good to me :)

    Steppenwolf, THANK YOU! <3 I love you for saying that. It isn't me. I *hate* french manicures, so this was tough for me :)

  4. loved the sheer pink with the duochrome-looks amazing on French manicure.
    great job - very classy!

  5. If I squint a little, I can imagine the tips green or purple with the blue flower decals blooming up the side. We are of like minds about basic frenches, but you still did a nice job showcasing what the kit can do.

  6. You're first pic example looks very classy and would work well for a professional setting.

  7. Scrangie, unfortunately i used to like french manicure years ago, now i know why i abandoned then, thanks for reminding me :)

  8. I'll occasionally do a French for some kind of event where I need to be kind of neutral. I haven't had to do one since the last wedding I went to. Scrangie, I prefer the duochromey one - when I go French I always use OPI's Altar Ego, just for something that bit more interesting.

    Also, this may sound really bonkers but for those of you needing a tip guide, try using a Post-It note. The glue isn't anywhere near as sticky as on the stencils you can get, and you can bend it nicely to grip over the nail and it peels off easily. It only really works if you have square shaped nails though rather than rounded.

  9. Nitzan, thank you!

    Tarotbydiana, now that would be cool. I can handle the 'funky french' but not this! Thank you for being awesome!

    Indi500fan, thank you! I suppose that's one way to look at it, lol :)

    Phdskin, skanky to the max! I couldn't wait to take this off, LOL :D

    Helen, Post-Its!! That's a fantastic idea!! Thank you for the 'tip', hee hee, get it, tip? :D

  10. lol scrangie your funny..."tip"

  11. Even though I hate french manicures because they are really passé in my opinion, these actually look very nice on you, Scrangie! Especially the duo-chrome one. I like that you didn't make the white tip thick and fat on the nail too :]
    I prefer a nice thin white tip.

  12. I have mixed feelings on French manis - I think the look good on medium length nails, and if done really well, otherwise I don't like them at all. You pull of all these looks, I wish I had the skill to do them on myself... I can only do them for my sisters nubs which is no fun!

  13. These french tips look better than the nail salon tips. You are an artist, Scrangie, and I appreciate that. The nail salon (not all, but most) french tips look rushed: white plastic tip with clear coat. BORING!

    To me it's like 'hurry hurry, you pay now you pay now, you get out.'

    Ok, Ok, I'll take a french mani over a skanky set of dry, man nails. But, I'm a manicure snob.



  14. Danielle, tee hee :D

    GerryBerry620, awwe, thank you! I have seen some nice french manicures in my lifetime, and I actually used to have french gels for a while! I think they are too porn-star for my liking :)

    Michelyne, awwe :) Well, you're not missing out on too much. Color is a LOT more fun!

    Scott, hahah that's exactly right! Thank you! I have really grown to hate salons, so dirty and so careless! People are starting to realize that they have the freedom to do their own nails, and that's a good thing!

  15. are the guides re-usable? or just use one time and discard?

  16. "I think they are too porn-star for my liking"

    God, this is EXACTLY what I think of them! I actually once heard some random man making the exact same comment (men feel this way about Ugg boots, too, apparently).

  17. I don't mind French manis, but they really aren't my thing. I like funky frenches with different colored tips, but I'm still picky about those.

    I kind of like the off colored tips better than the bright white ones though.

  18. Every french turned out beautiful! I've ordered these tip guides to try them out. It seems on your pictures that they actually work. I like the first one with the blue flowers on. But I stay put with my oppinion - no french on my nails, just funky french. :)

  19. Am also laughing at "porn star nails". I'm not sure if you have the same WAG culture over there (footballer's Wives And Girlfriends) as we do in the UK - think Victoria Beckham - but no WAG here would be complete without a full set of thick acrylic French tips. Ugh.

  20. Fudge, I successfully re-used them twice. They become less sticky each time, but still work fine for me. :)

    Twitches, haha I'm not alone! It's part of the porn star / stripper uniform I think. LOL

    HoneyHoneyNY, I love funky frenches. I've been seeing girls with a clear base and hot pink tip- love it!!

    Alexlyndra, awe, thank you! The tip guides are useful for funky frenches too :)

    Helen, LOL! I know exactly what you're talking about. We have something similar here but not to the extent that you guys have. Although, I do get most of my education in British culture from British TV... (And am a huge Little Britain fan, lol)

  21. I fail to see what is 'natural' about a french manicure. To me they scream 'FAKE'. Might as well dye your hair purple and try to tell people it's your 'natural' color. No dig on purple hair by the way, my 53 year old hair has bright/dark red violet streaks.

  22. Sandi, haha I agree! However, there are some styles of french manicures that really do mimic the look of a naked nail- some people call them American manicures, I have no idea why. But yeah... french manicures... ick. (My hair is purple too!)


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