Oh boy, oh boy, my first real stamped manicure!  And yes, I see the chipping, but SHUSH.  This is after at least 2 days of wear, and it was a quick and sloppy application just so I could try it out, and y'know what?  IT WORKS.  I really shouldn't be surprised, since lots of other people do these successfully all the time, but it still seemed like a magic trick.
Don't be like me, though... I was too impatient and stamped my first nail too quickly after applying the base color, and it smudged.  That would be the oddly deformed silver snowflake on my middle finger...

I think I might even like how the right hand turned out better than the left hand.  This is definitely a form of nail art that's possible to do on your dominant hand with your non-dominant hand.  I approve.  My nails, by the way, took a major shrinking after I smashed my right index finger into the rim of a glass canning jar.  Ouch.  As of the last post, my nails were the longest they've ever been (!!!) and, I think, my ideal length.  Oh well, back to growing.

Both hands at once!  Seriously, I don't know how the regular nail bloggers do it -- taking pictures of your own hands, especially both of your own hands is hard!  This involved some balancing of the camera on a pile of books.  I assume a tripod is the more widely accepted technique.

Aaaand one more picture, with the image plate.  The one thing I was surprised by when I got my plates was how small they are!  I suppose I should have realized, but for some reason the size they look in pictures and YouTube videos seems larger than the size they are in real life.  The plates are about the size of my camera's lens cap!  

Cast of Characters:
  • Sinful Colors Basecoat
  • China Glaze "Midnight Mission"
  • Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear "White On" ($3ish, just about everywhere if I remember correctly.  this polish is super thick and drippy and seems like it works decently for stamping on light to medium colors.  It has a very odd brush, though, which is apparently standard for some of the Sally Hansen polishes.  I don't like it much.)
  • Jesse's Girl "North Star"
  • Seche Vite topcoat
  • Konad stamper
  • Bundle Monster image plate BM14
  • Cotton balls, Q-Tip, acetone, wooden clothespin, paper towels, old gift card/other scraper (not pictured)

NOTE:  I'm just going to do a big "How Stamping Works" post soon, so I'm leaving out all the detail.  When I get it done, I'll just link to it in all my stamping posts.

  • Start with clean, dry nails & a well-ventilated space.
  • Put on your basecoat, let dry.
  • Paint all your nails with Midnight Mission.  (Honestly, you should use two thin coats, but I only used one.  It looked a little less neat and I had tipwear faster, but I was in a hurry.)  Let dry completely!
  • Using the silver polish (North Star) stamp the snowflake design on the outside corner of all your nails and the inside corner of your thumbs. (Um.  So, the edge of the nail towards the blade of the hand, not towards the thumb.)
  • Using the white polish (White On) stamp the snowflake design again, partially overlapping with the first.
  • Apply a coat of quick-dry topcoat.  All done!