Nail Design

Embedding Christmas Ornaments in Acrylic Nails

by Tim Crowley | November 21, 2011

In keeping with this holiday season, skilled nail tech and team Odyssey competitor Tammi Merritt shows how she uses pieces of broken Christmas ornaments to make shimmering and sparkling nail enhancements. Merritt warns techs though to be careful when using the small pieces of grandma’s favorite “accidentally broken” ornament, as they can be sharp and scatter easily.


1. Prep the nail plate and apply your form. Merritt used a cover pink with the reverse method to create the illusion of a longer nail bed, but these can also be done with a traditional application technique.


2. Put on a very thin layer of transparent acrylic along with a thin layer of a black, starting at the free edge and blending down over the transparent color to create more interest.


3. Begin applying pieces of the ornament. You can pick them up with a small wet bead of acrylic or place them with tweezers onto a spot of wet acrylic. You may need to break the pieces up even smaller by using pliers or rolling something heavy over the larger ones. Just be sure to do this in a deep cardboard or plastic box to contain any small pieces.


4. Once all of the pieces of broken ornament are applied, cover the entire enhancement with clear acrylic. Or you can try using a clear gel to cover the enhancement and encase the glass pieces. Gels allow the detail to really show through, especially if the ornament has color variations or a design.


5. File, shape, and buff the nails.


6. Apply top gel and cure under a UV lamp for two minutes, and enjoy the new life you brought to something that was once broken and otherwise headed for the trash.

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