So Hot and So Cold: The Top 3



Challenge 10 sponsored by Gel II asked our Top 3 to take a cue from Gel II’s temperature-activated, color-changing Reaction line of gel-polish, and hand paint a tropical/hot inspired nail design on one hand and a cool/arctic design on the other using gel-polish, nail polish, and acrylic paints.


This week’s guest judge was Doug Smith of Gel II. Permanent judges include CND’s Jan Arnold, NAILS Next Top Nail Artist 2014 winner Ryoko Garcia, NAILS editor Hannah Lee, NAILS senior editor Beth Livesay, and the rest of the team at NAILS Magazine.


Since there are only three competitors left, we aren’t announcing the top and bottom results until tomorrow. But you can read below for the judges’ comments on all three finalists.


Danielle Costantino: The judges think you did a nice job recreating the popular Disney character, but we’re disappointed that not enough of your own creative juices went into conceptualizing these hot/cold nails. It reads more like a Disney nail challenge than a set inspired by color-changing hot and cold theme. The painting on your snowman is nice, with good shading, but Frozen just seems so expected and literal. We would have liked to have seen more contrast in colors for the two different hands. As it is, they blend together and it doesn’t stand out as being one hand hot and one hand cold. Your color choices would have been better if it was obvious at a glance. For your Pinterest boards, you simply pinned the Disney images that you recreated. We were looking for a wider range of inspiration and hoping you’d take pieces from various sources and create your own original piece of art. At this point in the competition we’re looking for exceptional, original art. We also urge you to work on your foundation. Make sure your nails are always a consistent shape. Good job on your demo with your picstitch images.


Lexi Martone: The judges are always impressed with your beautiful artwork and your clean execution. We wish you would have done more than licensed characters and created your own interpretation of a hot and cold scene. We like that we can see a clear difference between the two climates. We know you’re capable of creating original imaginative works of art and we were hoping to see more of that from you. Something more abstract or design-intensive would have been more powerful. That being said, we love the contrast of the flat matte over the shiny metallic and think that’s right on trend. And nice details on your layering and contrasting textures. A few of your nails felt like they were an afterthought with very simple art. We want to see you take more risks to showcase your full potential. Your Pinterest boards didn’t have much by way of inspiration aside from the cartoon characters. We want to see you draw inspiration and then reinterpret something to create your own original art. At this stage of the game, we’re expecting perfection AND originality. Great job on your demo and your tight write-up.


Simone Gilbert: The judges think your background color fades are lovely. We love the way you created a rich, warm blast of tropical sky and the cool, starry Northern Lights. But we were disappointed to see sunsets and silhouettes. We would have preferred to see more detailed use of brush strokes and more dimension rather than just flat black shadows. A little shading in varied grays may have given more depth to this design. You have addressed the tropical/arctic theme literally (maybe too literally) but we were hoping for something fresh and unexpected. Sunsets and silhouettes are way too cliché and 1980s to be in the finals of this competition. We also noticed in your tutorial that your nail shapes aren’t consistent and looked crooked and flat. We aren’t sure if you sculpted these on your own hands, but something is off with your nails. You’ve done so well all season, we wish you had thought more outside the box for this final challenge. Your Pinterest inspiration boards were great and we really appreciate that you drew inspiration from a variety of sources to create your look.


Check back tomorrow to find out who won this week’s challenge and who’ll be packing up their paintbrushes.