Wednesday, 12 March 2014

I'm not sad, I'm just Distressed - LNTC

Hey y'all!

Today's Llama Nails technique is Distressed, which is possibly one of the easiest nail art looks to pull off, since it doesn't require ANY tools and absolutely NO precision!  I did a distressed look back at Halloween for another Llama Nails challenge, so I was quite happy to have another go at this simple technique.  Chalkboard Nails has a great tutorial if you're interested in seeing a bit more description, but seriously, this is so easy it hardly requires instruction!

To get this antiqued look, I only needed five polishes and absolutely NO tools!

From left to right:
Models Own Hayley's Comet
Maybelline Blackout
Barry M Silver Foil
Models Own 25 Carat Gold
Not shown because I have the dumb:
OPI Matte Top Coat
I started with a base of Blackout, followed by one coat of Hayley's Comet to get a gorgeous teal green base for my art.  Then using 25 Carat Gold, I wiped both sides of the brush off inside the neck of the bottle to get a mostly dry brush, and randomly stroked hints of the gold over all my nails, actively NOT trying to get any coverage and leaving a sparse, speckled appearance.

I repeated this process using Blackout again, and then Silver Foil.  The result is a very brush-strokey, mottled, distressed finish. 

I decided it was far too shiny to look as aged as I wanted, so I matted it with the OPI Matte.

I created the accent nail by placing two gold grommets on my ring finger, pressing down as best I could into the wet polish, and sealing it with another coat of OPI Matte to kill some of the contrasting shine off the gold and leaving a wet center in those rings to which I could affix the cobalt blue rhinestones.  The rings obviously aren't bent around the curve of my nail, so if I'd been wearing this out I probably would've opted to either try to bend them or affix them with nail glue instead, because they'd probably pop off fairly easily.

In the pic above, you can see a white spot from my matte topcoat, which I had thought I had corrected when I thinned the bottle down with thinner.  This resulted in a less-matte, but almost more waxy finish which I like, but obviously I didn't manage to kill all those little dried white clumps, so a new matte topcoat is still on my "to buy" list. 

I hope you like this look as much as I do!  It reminds me of aged bronze when it starts going a bit green.  As I said before, this is one of the simplest forms of nail art, and depending on your color selection, the variety of looks are endless!  All of my strokes are oriented vertically on the nail, but you could easily change it up by going horizontally on some, or using fewer colors, or mixing matte and gloss finishes!  If you decide to try, I would LOVE to see what you make of it!

For more inspiration, check out the other looks created by the Llama Nails bloggers below, and have fun with it!  I hope you're all well and I'll see ya next time!


  1. I have seen so many "distressed" manis but this is one of my absolute favourites! The colours and the gold with the matte effect make it extra special. Plus the amethyst crystal totally makes the nails look lie a beautiful cavern wall full of gems :) Love love love! :)

    1. Thank you Sam! High praise from a woman whose work I admire a lot!

  2. I am so in looooove with this mani!!! You picked great colors and the matted gromets.... OMG to die for!!! I almost lost it when I read "Not shown because I have the dumb:" LOL!!

    1. Thank you so much Angie! Unfortunately I have "the dumb" a lot lately... hopefully I'll get my head back on straight!

  3. What a cool look! And I love that accent finger- very clever use of grommets!

  4. So beautiful!!! I love the green/gold combination!

  5. Sure is looking so peacock-ish! Great work you did there!

    1. Thank you! Tis a wee bit peacocky, I agree. Peacock and steampunk... Peapunk? LOL


I love reading your comments and reply whenever I have time. Thanks for reading and interacting with me!