New Nails, Who Dis?

This is a story about the “other thing” I’ve been doing with my time (besides making masks) that isn’t making cookies. But don’t worry, I figured out a way to work in some cookies for you.  Keep reading and you’ll see!

Sometime this summer, I found a new obsession.  It was mid-pandemic, cases were down, but our kids are high risk so we weren’t going out on vacation, or to the water park or even to TJ Maxx. Also, work is and has been crazy.  Feels like for well over a year, but honestly, more like a decade. I was feeling a little….restless.

Anyhoo, somehow I stumbled onto the idea of nail wraps- basically stickers for your nails.  Now I can’t remember how I found out about them or why exactly they caught my eye. Certainly I missed the whole Jamberry craze back in the day.  But they caught my eye in a big way. and when they did, I remembered admiring a client’s nails in a meeting, and thinking my nails could never look that cool, because I’m hopeless with polish.  And every time I got gel nails for Cookie Cons, they would look great for a few weeks, then my nails would get shredded when the polish was removed.  And time for the salon was nil, even before the pandemic. So was there really something that would give little ol’ me cool nails? It turns out that indeed there was.

Nail Art Cookies!

I joined an Instagram collaboration called #SweetNailsCollab that went live February 20th, hosted by @burntcookiesbymurrah, and decided to make cookies that reflect not just the one set of nails I wore for the photo shoot, but all sorts of nails that I have or want. It was the perfect opportunity to share my journey while also sharing some cookies! The sweet colors, cool patterns and textures that we put on cookies are getting put on nails as well. In fact, I remember a cookier saying that she looked at nail art for inspiration, and at the time I wondered what she was talking about! Now I know, because I’m living in both worlds too!

Back to the beginning, I got online, looking for tips and brands of nail wraps, and found a blog that said that Dashing Diva wraps were pretty great. So I tried them first.

My first set of nail wraps, Dashing Diva Gloss. Note that I have unphotogenic hands throughout this post, but at least my nails are nice?

Dashing Diva are pretty great!  They lasted a week looking good, and I was hooked!  I quickly discovered that if you used a coat of their base coat, they last for almost 2 weeks, and your nails are protected when you take the stickers off.

There was only one problem with Dashing Diva wraps- they were lasting too long!  Okay, so not really a problem problem.  But I was having so much fun, and I didn’t want nails that lasted two whole weeks!  Just like with cookies, I like my art impermanent and I wanted more and new.  Soon I was trying all kinds of nail wraps! OhoraEvil Nails, Sawyer and Scout, and one of my favorites for regular (cheap but work great with a top coat!) wraps, Lovely Hello.  And diving off the deep end into….holiday nails?!?! I mean, I don’t even recognize myself anymore.

So many nail options! I **may** have gone overboard a smidge.  And, I’ve started moving into press on nails, which have come A LONG way since my youth.  In fact, I’ve looked at so many nail brands, I started getting ads for the wholesale companies that will make your own brand of nails.  I’m not quite there yet, but don’t tempt me anymore, IG ads.

This brand of press on nails, Mejosi, is one of my current favorites, because they come in all kinds of cool styles and are reusable, with great sticky tabs included so you don’t have to mess with nail glue. Don’t laugh, but these are my first ever leopard print cookies, made to go with these nails. Need to work on my consistency, apparently, but I do love the effect.

The light was fading fast when I took this picture, but you don’t need much sun to light up these sparkly gems! More Mejosi nails, and I finally tried that crumpled parchment on royal icing technique, which is easily the coolest thing Haniela has ever done, and she’s done a LOT of cool things! I wore a third set of Mejosi nails to show off these cookies- I love matte nails and I love the colors of these with the glitter accent.

Ah, the French Manicure.  Still one of my favorite styles. I got married in a French mani/pedi, and on our honeymoon flight, realized that lady next to me in line to board must be a newlywed also. We had the exact same nails. 

The thing about French manicures is that my nails are all over the map, some wide, some long, so traditional French press ons or wraps don’t work because they look uneven.  That’s why I love these Incoco strips, where you do the white tips, and then a clear overlay. They are fussy to do, but the results are worth it!  LOL- I’m realizing this is basically just a walk down nail brand memory lane, or as my mom calls it, a “shopping opportunity.”

Dashing Diva Magic Press nails are also some of my faves, shown here with some jeweled accents.  I busted out some edible gems to decorate the accompanying cookies. Impress press-on nails are also amazing and have fun colors, patterns and gems.  For both of these I wear a layer of Dashing Diva (DD) Red Therapy Base Shield for press ons, and it helps them stick and protects my nails. They also have great solid colors, which never chip or peel!

Gotta mention Colorstreet in all this! Colorstreet is actual nail polish tabs, and while many of the wraps I use are made with real nail polish, most also have a plastic layer in there somewhere, and Colorstreet really doesn’t seem to. They go on easy, and they come off with nail polish remover (Most others peel off with the help of remover).  They definitely wear better than regular nail polish.  I did try modern nail polish as part of this journey, thinking maybe it would work better than it did for me in junior high. Alas, no! So back to wraps for me. Colorstreet don’t last quite as long for me as Dashing Diva, but they do feel very nice on, and you can layer them.  You can buy them from their website, but it’s usually better to buy them from your friend who sells them. For me, that friend is @nailsbymurrah, that same Murrah that hosted the nail/cookie collaboration!  If you want Colorstreet, you can check them out here.

Too Cool For School

Back to the Future!  I may never be cool enough (or young enough) to wear these pierced nails by Rave Nailz, but still I kind love them.  And same goes for these crazy rose gold holographic ones by Marmalade Nails. But they do make for great cookie inspo. I did actually buy those Clutch Nails with the tattoos, but I’ll definitely have to save them for a walk on the wild side! 

Point is, I’m going to keep stretching my creative muscles. Sometimes it’s with cookies, sometimes it’s trying to find the perfect mask pattern (new post coming on that one.) and now sometimes it’s with nails.  I won’t turn this into a nail blog, I promise! In fact, I have cookie posts to catch up on, with some great background on my Christmas set.  The job of being the breadwinning architect firm owner person is where all my time really goes, so thank you to everyone who tags along on my hobbies, and I look forward to more cookies and someday, seeing you all at Cookie Con or on the street.  Be sure to check out my nails when you see me. 😉

PS: if you made it to the end of this blog post and you are interested in trying some new nails, and you live in the US or Canada, post a comment and I’ll do a drawing in a week to send someone new nails! (EDITED TO ADD that the giveaway is complete, but please to do leave a comment! They make my day/week.)