Marvellous marbling

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Colours used - Barry M Nail Paint in Fuchsia and Bright Purple, Models Own Pink Blush, Topshop Stolen Sapphires

In my ongoing quest for crazy-amazing nail art, I decided to give water marbling a try. I'd been meaning to do it for ages, but it looked quite messy and time consuming so I kept putting it off. However, after MJ posted her amazing Topshop-inspired nails, I knew I had to give it a go, so after watching a couple of Youtube tutorials, I got to it.

I think the results look cool, (my favourite is the middle finger of my left hand - look how swirly it is!) but it really is quite a massive faff. There are absolutely loads of tutorials on Youtube, so if you do want to try this for yourself, I'd suggest checking those out, but basically, you take a bowl of water, drip some different colours of nail varnish into it, swirl them around with a toothpick (I actually used one of those mini umbrellas you put into cocktails because we didn't have any toothpicks...) then press your nail onto the surface of the water, so that the design sticks to it.

The most difficult thing about this method is that you have to work really quickly. The nail varnish dries on the surface of the water and forms a kind of film after about a minute, so you can only do one or two nails at a time, then you have to clear the water of any remaining varnish (using a toothpick/cocktail umbrella) and start over with more drops. Also, I found it really tricky to actually get the drops of nail varnish into the water - they just wouldn't drip! I ended up sort of waving the brush over the surface of the water to encourage a drop to fall from it, but in my panic and/or enthusiasm I managed to throw the brush onto my bed, thus resulting in a massive blue splodge on my bedcover. Doh!

Also, as you can imagine, it gets quite messy. You can't really avoid putting your finger into the water, so you end up having to do a lot of clean up afterwards with nail varnish remover. You can wrap sticky tape around your fingers as a guard, but I couldn't be bothered with that because I'm silly.

All in all, I really like the effect, especially because every nail looks different and unique, so I'd say it's definitely worth giving it a try, but only if you've got a lot of time, patience and tape on your hands.


  1. Wow, that looks absolutely amazing! Sounds tricky though, I think I'll just live in envy of your nail skills

  2. This looks so, so good! The whole process of it really does sound like too much effort and I am just lazy so I can't be bothered! Maybe one day I'll do it, if I'm really bored! Love the colours you've used x

  3. That looks really good! I'm thinking this is something to try out on a night in with the girls! xx

  4. This tutorial looks a lot easier than I bet it is! I'm sure I'd get frustrated with it but you've done an ace job! jazzy ♥

  5. so crazy good! I'm deffo trying this


  6. I wish I could wear nail varnish, for some reason it makes my nails feel all claustrophobic and sort of sweaty (gross I know_ - yours look awesome though.

    And YES to the early noughty clips, i remember "hair accessories" were always a must have before I got into make up.

  7. Argh these look so good! I had a go once but my nails looked like crap, I obviously don't have the knack. Very impressed with yours!

  8. They look great!! Well done. Check out my blog let me know what you think.. xoxo


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