Category Archives: Nails

NY Fashion Week Catwalk Nails

We have now officially entered into autumn, my favourite season. I love the transition from summer dresses and denim shorts to snuggly knitwear and oodles and oodles of layers along with beautiful soft leather boots teamed with cosy snoods as the weather begins to get colder and colder.

As the colours of the leaves on the trees change so then must the colour of our beloved manicures.  Time to say goodbye to the pops of neon, pastel tones and my favourite white manicures – it is time to make way for some new deeper and richer shades of polish and gel.

NY Fashion Week Nail Trends: Rodarte & Helmut Lang

New York Fashion Week is a trustworthy source to look to when deciding what colours to revamp your nails with.  This year we saw an influx of barely there pinks and nudes on many runways from Oscar De La Renta and Carolina Herrera to Kate Spade – super chic.  No matter what the season I always have a few nudes in stock for my clients to choose from as they are always in demand.

NY Fashion Week Nail Trends: Zimmerman, Alexandre Herchcovitch and Kenneth Cole

As always Reds and Burgundys featured heavily on the catwalks in true autumn style.  I think the deep reds are my favourite colours for autumn especially on almond shaped nails – It is just such a classic style along with the fact it matches all skin tones, what’s not to love?!

NY Fashion Week Nail Trends: DKNY

A very welcome addition to my wardrobe of nail polishes and gels for autumn 2014 will be Grey. Obviously the designers showcasing at New York Fashion Week share my love for all things grey – every shade was seen on the runways. 

NY Fashion Week Nail Trends: Vera Wang and Badgley Mischka

It doesn’t matter whether you prefer metallic or matte shades of grey, everything goes!  Grey is a lovely alternative to summer white manicures or black winter manicures, it’s somewhere just in between.

NY Fashion Week Nail Trends: Tadashi Shoji

The final major colour scheme seen on the catwalks in New York was full throttle heavy metal – from silver tips to all out rose gold, every shade and tone was being showcased. 

For those of you who like something a little bit quirky on your nails this is the style for you. Get creative and paint a natural nude on your nail plate and finish the look off with a slick of gold along the tips – perfect for a night out with the girls. 

The best bit about this look is when the tip of your nails begin to chip you can simply patch it up with a dot of the metallic polish you used and due to the nature of the metallic shades you won’t be able to see where it has been repaired once your top coat has been applied.

NY Fashion Week Nail Trends: Mara Hoffman and Dannijo

I have currently got a Bio Sculpture gel overlay on my nails in one of their most popular colours – #74 Real Red – but now I can’t wait to get inventive and make some metallic creations! It’s all about having fun with your style, so don’t be afraid to have a play with your nail polishes to create something new.

Article by Louise Henry

Louise joined The Beauty Cloud team in May 2014 as our Nail expert.  She is a fully trained & qualified Nail Technician running her own little nail bar in Bangor, The Nail Room at Salon75. 

Any questions, email louise@thebeautycloud.co.uk or find her on Facebook

Celebrity Nail Watch – Lily Allen

I have been LOVING watching Lily Allen play around with her fresh new style.  She is looking amazing (particularly considering she has recent had 2 children) and I love that she is fearless when it comes to colour.  She’s been experimenting with some wacky nail art on some super long extensions and, once again, I have been creeping about on Instagram taking notes on her latest manicures to share with you guys!

Lilly Allen Nails

These bad boys are neon hippy crazy and I absolutely love them!  I’m sure they took a few hours to complete!  The tie dye nail art is really effective in these neon colours and, believe it or not, it’s actually really easy to do at home!  To Copy the design on Lily’s thumb first you need to pick the 3 or 4 colours you want to use and draw some vertical lines on the nail using these polishes – make sure you use quite a lot of product when drawing these lines as you don’t want them to dry straight away!  Once you have drawn the lines take a cocktail stick and drag horizontally straight through the lines of polish – this will mix the colours together and create the tie dye effect.

When you have mastered the technique you can start experimenting and move away from vertical lines… give some horizontal lines a try!  You can also use more colours or, alternatively, use only 2 colours to create a similar swirling pattern design like the one on Lily’s ring finger.  You can even add some glitter to the finish design to add a bit of extra sparkle!

Lilly Allen, Embellished NailsEmbellished nails, see above, are also quite easy to replicate using a steady hand, some nail art studs/crystals/pearls, a splash of nail glue and a bit of imagination.  Prep your nails, apply your chosen base colour and allow it to dry, then go crazy with the nail art studs!!  Remember to finish with a slick of top coat.

Lilly Allen, Ombre Fade NailsIf you aren’t a massive fan of intense nail art designs then an ombre fade pattern, shown in the picture above, is a great choice – especially for shorter nails.  If you’re feeling adventurous you can add some glitter or a few studs to complete your ombre fade look.

LA4Unfortunately there is absolutely no point in me giving you a step by step tutorial for the nails above.  The truth is, there is no easy way to complete a nail art design like this!  You just need to have the patience to play with some nail art pens and polishes for a few hours and still have enough patience left over to embellish the set of nails with some studs and crystals!

 

Article by Louise Henry

Louise joined The Beauty Cloud team in May 2014 as our Nail expert.  She is a fully trained & qualified Nail Technician running her own little nail bar in Bangor, The Nail Room at Salon75. 

Any questions, email louise@thebeautycloud.co.uk or find her on Facebook

Shine Bright Like A Diamond!

 

ASU Nail and Beauty Supplies

I was recently asked if I would like to attend a training course for ‘Swarovski  Bling toes’ down in Dublin at a nail and beauty training academy called ‘ASU’. I jumped at the chance!

The training academy was fantastic.  They run courses like clockwork every single month for dozens of different treatments. You don’t actually have to have any previous beauty training behind you to attend any of these courses which is great for beginners and enthusiasts.

The staff were amazingly friendly and extremely professional – these girls really know what they are talking about!  The downstairs of the academy consists entirely of an ‘Aladdin’s Cave’ showroom where you can purchase all of the fantastic products and accessories they have to offer. I could have spent an absolute fortune!

For more information about the professional products which they sell, and to see a list of training courses that are on offer, have a look at their website www.asunailandbeauty.ie.

Once we’d been shown around we made our way upstairs to the classroom, took a seat and had a read through the Bling Toes Manual and other paperwork that had been given to us whilst we tentatively waited for the training to begin.

Workshop materials at ASU Beauty Training Academy

Our educator on the day was a lovely girl called Laura who couldn’t have been more helpful or knowledgeable about the course.  The class began with a bit of information on the treatment itself, the products involved and the importance of client consultation prior to completing the treatment on any customer.  Once Laura was happy we were all up to speed with the necessary info she got straight into a demonstration of the treatment which we all eagerly watched, taking in all of her advice and helpful tips along the way.

Workshop in action at ASU Beauty Training Academy

Finally it was the moment we had all been waiting for… it was now our turn to have a go on each other’s tootsies, so we paired up and got busy!  My partner went first while I kicked back and watched her showcasing her newly learnt skills.  Having the treatment applied is a really relaxing experience…  I could barely keep my eyes open.  This procedure is all about pampering and really is the ultimate treat for your feet!

Swarovski  Bling toes workshop at ASU

This lavish pedicure is created by the individual placement of genuine Swarovski crystals being set into a clear gel overlay on to every single one of your toenails.

We used the smallest crystals to give the maximum sparkle. The nails last up to 6 weeks so would be ideal for any brides wanting a bit of extra bling on their wedding day, lasting right through to their honeymoon or even just for those of you who are like me and enjoy a bit of everyday sparkle in their life!

Swarovski Bling Toes Workshop

I was disappointed when my treatment was finished but was keen to give the technique a go for myself!

6xI was impressed with the quality of the gel that we were provided with in our kits as it was very easy to work with.  Once the crystals were applied to the gel and cured under the UV lamp they were stuck there for the long run!

This brings me to the little tool I was most excited about… the wax pencil AKA The Amazing Picker Upper’!  I have spent years using bits of blue tack, dampened cocktail sticks and various other makeshift tools to lift and apply crystals to nails.  This pencil actually revolutionised my work… I’m not exaggerating!!  It is literally just a pencil with white wax down the centre instead of lead.  All you need to do is touch the top of the crystal and it sticks to the end of the sharpened wax ready to be applied to the nail.  You can purchase these from ASU for ONLY €1.50! This pencil made the whole process of applying the bling toes much easier and allowed you to get into a soothing rhythm.

Swarovski Bling Toes WorkshopOnce everyone had completed at least two big toes Laura began talking us through the in’s and outs of after care for your Bling Toes and demonstrated how we should safely remove the crystals from your clients nails.

The final part of our training, which I thought was very helpful, covered how we should price the treatment in our salons and even how we should go about marketing the treatment.

Sometimes beauty training courses can be very daunting but I can honestly say I didn’t feel one bit uncomfortable or nervous at ASU.  The staff couldn’t have made us all feel any more welcomed or valued.  The training course itself was superb, covering every possible aspect of the treatment and I loved every minute of it.  I will definitely be back down to do a few more courses in the ASU academy and I couldn’t recommend it enough to any of you who are considering signing up to a training course, whether it be just as a new hobby or even as a new career.

Article by Louise Henry

Louise joined The Beauty Cloud team in May 2014 as our Nail expert.  She is a fully trained & qualified Nail Technician running her own little nail bar in Bangor, The Nail Room at Salon75. 

Any questions, email louise@thebeautycloud.co.uk or find her on Facebook

Glitter Fade Nail Tutorial

In the wise words of Jessie J; I’m feeling sexy & free… Like Glitter’s raining on me!

I have a confession to make… My name is Louise Henry and I am a glitter-holic.

Glitter makes everything better, you can never have too much – especially when it comes to your nails. It is such a simple solution to cheering up plain nails and it is super-duper quick to apply.

There are many different methods of applying glitter to a manicure or pedicure but my favourite is probably the glitter fade.  It makes it look like glitter is raining down over your nails.  You can use it to add an element of sparkle to pale pink bridal nails or bling up a set of neon holiday toes. It’s SO Versatile!

All you need is your nail preparation kit along with a base coat polish, your chosen colour of polish, an extra sparkly glitter polish & your top coat.  I would recommend Barry M’s glitter polishes – very reasonable prices and great finish.

Glitter Fade Nails

Prep and prime your nails as always.  Once your nails are prepped apply your base coat and 2 layers of your chosen colour… don’t be afraid to be a little adventurous!  Allow these layers of polish a good 15 mins to dry as you don’t want to smudge them when applying the special layer of glitter.

After you have allowed your coloured polish to sufficiently dry you can go all out with the glitter.  Using the nail polish brush, apply a thick blob of glitter polish either at the cuticle end of your nail or else at the free edge of your nail, doing only one nail at a time as you need to move quickly – when I say blob I really mean it, keep that polish thick and the glitter dense!

Now you need to wipe ALL the excess polish off your brush & using this brush slowly wipe the glitter down the nail in small strokes, allowing the glitter to rain down your nail like a sparkling snow fall.  Be gentle with this part as you don’t need much pressure.

Repeat this step on all of your nails. You will get more confident as you go along.  Don’t be too fussy as the glitter does most of the work and that’s the joy of this style of nail art!  Once all of your nails have been adequately jazzed up, pop a thin layer of shiny top coat on and a slathering of cuticle oil… now you can sit back and admire your handy work.

Glitter Fade Nails, The Nail Room, Studio 75, Bangor

Easy peasy lemon squeezey, amazing isn’t it?!

Send me in some of your attempts via facebook/email or tag me in your pictures on Instagram, I’m happy to help if you have any trouble following the guide.  I’ll leave you with a few pictures of some glitter fade gel manicures I have done on my clients. L xx

Glitter Fade Nails, The Nail Room, Studio 75, Bangor

Article by Louise Henry

Louise joined The Beauty Cloud team in May 2014 as our Nail expert.  She is a fully trained & qualified Nail Technician running her own little nail bar in Bangor, The Nail Room at Salon75. 

Any questions, email louise@thebeautycloud.co.uk or find her on Facebook