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When the color tides in the beauty world are calm and neutral, you'll see women sporting similarly painted nails. Nudes, grays, sheers and pared-down minimalistic looks take over and color appears in little sophisticated pops -- think classic red. However, when color shows up on the runways, big color splashes show up everywhere from eye shadow to nails. What's more, instead of one bold pop of color, a more laid-back, anything goes vibe means playing with two colors at once will double your fun.
The problem with free-handed color-blocking is that creating straight lines is difficult for anyone. Before you begin, pick up a package of French manicure strips -- they're skinny adhesive strips that won't pull off nail paint when applied. Choose two contrasting nail polish colors. Paint your nails with the first color and allow them to dry thoroughly. Next, lay a manicure strip over your nail anywhere you please. With your second color, paint the area on one side of the strip. Remove the strip and allow your nails to dry. Perfect lines every time.
The crackled, mosaic-like finish looks like it takes hours, but thanks to some pretty smart nail polish, it's an easy process. First, choose your base color -- think black. Next, find a bottle of nail polish that creates a crackle effect -- search for buzz words like "shattered finish." After painting your nails with your black polish and allowing it to dry, add your crackle nail polish on top -- go with something totally different, like hot pink. This second polish dries into a shattered look. Looks like a masterpiece but takes no time at all.
If the idea of a French manicure appeals to you, but you've always been more of a color-outside-of-the-lines type of girl, go for a less involved look that you can throw together without much preparation or concentration. You'll need two varying colors. Start with a dark color such as deep matte brown. Paint your nails and allow them to dry. Next, grab a bottle of glitter nail polish -- not the shy shimmery kind, but the super-populated there's-glitter-everywhere variety. Think light metallic purple. Paint the tips -- the top one-third or so -- with the glitter and keep the line soft and organic. Foolproof!
Colorful French Manicure
The French manicure -- a total classic. Whether you have always loved a thick white tip or a skinny little white line, you may be asking yourself how to merge your love for this aesthetic with the bold two-color nail art you so desperately desire. Easy! First, paint nails with one color and let them dry. Now you have two options. First, you can use French manicure adhesive strips to create a clean line and use another bottle of nail color. Or, buy a manicure pen and hand-paint a line in a contrasting color. Ooh la la!