OKAY Y’ALL here it is. a tutorial for cloudy/starry sky nails because they’re my favourite but they’re also pretty simple!! this might be long sorry!!
things you will need:
1. top coat - seche vite is best but use whatever you’ve got (the thicker it is, the better though)
white polish for the base - opi “my boyfriend scales walls”
star glitter - i took mine out of revlon “celestial fx” but if you have loose star glitter that will also work. alternatively if you don’t wanna use glitter you can paint the stars by hand (i would recommend using acrylic paint for this)
2. for the gradient - opi “pink friday”, chi chi “glamourville”, essie “mint candy apple” (you can use similar colours or really w/e colours you want)
3. silver polish for the clouds - sally hansen “celeb city”
glitter polish - sally hansen “disco ball” or w/e glitter you prefer
not pictured - sally hansen “white out” for clouds and stars
4. my bottle of “disco ball” had gone really yellow and gross so i ended up using inm “northern lights” holo topcoat instead. china glaze “fairy dust” is basically the same thing as this
5. tools - dotting tool, clean up brush + small dish for acetone + paper towel, toothpicks, makeup sponge
not pictured - acetone, plastic baggy
to make the stars:
6. using toothpicks, pull a bunch of stars out of the “celestial fx” polish and wipe them off with paper towel (or your fingers!!). stick em onto a plastic ziploc baggy or something similar
7. this part is fiddly but still way easier than painting the stars by hand!! dab white polish onto the stars gently, just using the polish brush. most of the time you will end up with a little puddle of polish around it. when the star is covered, you’ll need to move it out of the puddle to dry!! otherwise when you try and pick it up, it won’t be star shaped, it will be puddle shaped. lame.
painting yr nails:
8. start off with a white base. you’ll need this because the gradient is going to be pretty sheer and this helps to make it opaque way quicker!
9. cut a piece of sponge slightly larger than your nail.
10. this is how you will make the gradient!! basically paint the polish onto the sponge in w/e way you want it to look. make sure to overlap each colour a lil bit, otherwise it will be harder to blend
11. i put washi tape around my cuticles because sponging gets MESSY and it’s a pain in the butthole to clean it up! this is optional though
12. this is the colour sponged onto the nail once. as you can see it’s like nothing so you might have to sponge many layers!! just keep re-applying polish onto the sponge and repeat the process until it is opaque enough. move the sponge up and down a little bit as you press it on to help blend.
13. here i decided i was happy with the opacity. this was probably 10+ layers of light sponging. it’s better not to overload the sponge with polish because when you press it down, it will squelch out everywhere. you might have some weird sponge texture going on here but don’t worry!
14. tape removed!! very minimal clean up required. just dip your cleaning brush in acetone and gently swipe around the edges of the nail!!
15. apply your glitter!! mine is barely visible here sorry u__u
16. now apply your top coat BUT you need to work fast and also stick the stars on! if you put them on just after the top coat and very gently press down, they should adhere nicely and not stick up too much. it’s best to do one nail at a time, and you can pick the stars up with the end of a toothpick (i just lick the end a little but if you don’t wanna be gross just dampen it with water or acetone, it doesn’t need much to stick). i prefer to do the stars before the clouds because otherwise i don’t leave enough space to stick them on!!
17. next is the silver lining of the cloud!! (or you can skip this and just have white clouds) drop a little bit of silver polish onto the plastic bag your stars were on, then dip your dotting tool in and make cartoon cloud shapes (basically a bunch of overlapped dots in a vaguely oval arrangement). i put the tape back over my cuticles because the silver i used is very annoying to clean up but ya don’t have to do that of course
18. now blob some white polish on the bag and do slightly smaller circles on top of the silver ones you just did!! if you have a dotting tool set you can use a smaller size for this. if you are using something else like a pin or bobby pin or something for the dots you can put less polish on your tool and just use a very light hand when dotting.
19. now clean up if you made a lil mess, then top coat and you’re done!!!! wow!! you may need to do more than one layer of top coat to seal in the stars fully, because of their pointy bits they are extra annoying and extra likely to catch on stuff so you wanna make sure they’re covered.
SORRY this was super long!! message me if you need clarification!!