Wednesday, August 17, 2011

on 54 comments

My take on dry water marbling

Ok, let's just get this straight.  I am the queen of suck when it comes to doing water marbling.  I shit you not when I say I get it everywhere and end up with a god awful mess both over my fingers and on the actual nail itself. In fact I'm sure I've told you this before!  The truth is, I had decided never to do another water marble again.

Then I saw the most amazing water marble ever done by Christine from Let Them Have Polish.  When you see something like that, it makes you want to try again.  Then I read a tutorial on dry water marbling by the Enamel Girl.  I really liked this idea, but wanted to make a few changes.  But first I will show my final products.  I tried this twice and therefore have two finished manis.




I know these are are far from good, but they are way better than anything I have achieved with water marbling before.

The biggest problem I have with water marbling is, first getting a nice image in the water, then trying to position the best part of that image correctly on my nail.  I also feel bad about the amount of nail polish that water marbling uses and surely I don't even need to mention the clean up.

My new technique allows me to pick and choose which parts of the design I like best, which fingers I want those design bits on and use one marbling design for multiple fingers.

What I did was create the usual water marble in the cup of water, use a plastic bag to pick up the design, let it dry, cut out the bit of the design I liked, apply it like a foil to my finger.

Here are some step by step pictures.

First make the best design you can with your polishes in the water.  I'm not going to go into how to do this because there are other bloggers out there that explain this, and do a far, far better job than me.

Cut out a piece of plastic from a zip lock bag that will fit inside your cup of water.  I also leave a little tag of plastic which makes grabbing it out easier.


Place you plastic over the pattern on the water.


Lift out the plastic with the image now attached to it.


Here is the underside of the image, straight after taking it out of the water
.

Lay your piece of plastic on a tissue or some paper towel. (see my blue set of pictures below for an additional step I learned here)


Allow the polish to dry on the plastic, then cut out the bits that you want to apply to your nail.


Now, on a painted nail, that has been drying for at least 5 minutes (you really only need one coat just to make it grab, if you have more than one coat let it dry longer), place the piece of plastic on your nail with the polish facing down.


Firmly press the polish down around all the edges, then grab a corner and rip it off quickly.  The polish will remain on your nail and will have smooth and shiny finish.


Here is a second lot of pictures I did with the second mani. See how I suck at doing the pattern in the water!


Plastic goes in, lays flat on top of the water and is then lifted out.


Here is the plastic resting on a tissue. See the water drops on the design.


Here is my additional step, grab a tissues and gentle blot the water drops off the plastic. This just makes the design a bit cleaner in that you don't see water drops.  Don't forget though that where you blot off the water will actually be against you nail, not on the top, so you don't see it much anyway.


The finished piece of designer plastic after it had dried.


Lazy me just applied this over my existing mani.  I just did a quick top coat, and let it dry for five minutes.


Pushed onto my thumb nail.


Rip, just like waxing your leg.  See how it just peels off the plastic.  Obviously some clean up is required.


My other fingers ready to go.


Some errors I made were:
  • Not waiting long enough for my underwear to dry (I mean the base coat of nail polish here ok).  It only needs to be slightly tacky, not wet.  If it's even slightly wet still, the polish wont transfer off the plastic.
  • Not waiting long enough for the polish on the plastic to dry.
  • Not waiting long enough before applying Seche Vite top coat.  My polish was still moist from being in the water, so I got bubbles with my top coat on some nails.
  • Cutting the plastic designs too small for my nail.  I know, dumb beginners mistake this one. I did that on the ring finger on the pink design
So basically, being a little too impatient was my biggest downfall.

Now this was only my first (and second) attempt at doing this, and I was so happy that I had something I could leave on my nails. Plus it was a pretty clean exercise.  I also like that I can do up the marble designs transfer them to plastic then leave the plastic designs in may box with nail art stuff and apply these at a later date.

Sure I know I leagues away from anything like that amazing marble linked above, but I think I could create something better with practice.  So if you totally suck at doing water marbling the traditional, maybe you could try it this way?  What do you think?

EDIT - check out my later dry water marble here, it's much neater and shows how you can get better with practice.

54 comments:

  1. What a great idea. Good on you for giving it a go. I love how marbling looks, but I've never tried it an probably never will. I'm kind of impatient that way. And lazy. Let's not forget that...

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  2. Cool bananas! Never heard of this technique before!

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  3. Very cool idea! Thanks for sharing:)

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  4. Definately give this a shot, if only I could actually get the polish to float in the water.

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  5. They look great! Especially like the first one

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  6. That's a really neat idea for marbling. I've been scared to try it because I know I'm going to end up with a giant mess, but this looks way less intimidating!

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  7. Great idea and far less intimidating than water marbling! On my list of things to try.

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  8. Awesome! I have never seen this technique before!

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  9. I so totally need to try this.. Are you on the nail board btw?

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  10. YAY, when I saw Enamel Girl's post, I was so hoping someone else would blog about their trying it!

    You even went a step further by still using the water, that's so cool!

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  11. First of all, that is really cool!! I enjoy regular water marbleing but hardly ever do it since it is so time-consuming.

    Second, I received my color-change pigments today, so thank you so much!

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  12. The mess and waste of water marbling has kept me far away, but this just might change my mind... wish me luck! hehe

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  13. It looks great.. And that second picture - love it!

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  14. Thank everyone - I've love to see links to anyone else's blogs that tries this.

    ReecesPeeces - Yep I'm there now, just a bit shy about posting :/

    Amy - glad your pigments turned up - send me a photo of something you make :)

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  15. I still think this is amazing! Thank you for linking the tutorials!

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  16. Wow, good idea!
    I suck at marbling, so this might help.
    Must try, thank you! =))

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  17. This is such a great idea! I suck at water marbling but I'm going to give this a go. Thanks a million for the tutorial!

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  18. Nice manis, I love the colour combo of the second water marbling!

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  19. this is a brilliant technique..i must commend on the awesome amount of time you spent on doing this tutorial.. thank you for enlightening us

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  20. that's pretty frickin' awesome!!!

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  21. I know what my next mani will be! I hate water marbeling for all of the same reasons you mentioned but I think I can tackle this one! Thanks for the awesome idea!

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  22. I always thought that this technique is to messy for me but with tape looks a bit easier so maybe you convinced me to try it next time, thanks

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  23. What colors did you use on the second one, so pretty!

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  24. Nailed it - Kleancolor Metallics, Green, Yellow, Aqua and Sapphire. The Kleancolour metallics are awesome.

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  25. It think that your version of dry-water marbling is great. I wanted to try water marbling but I always thought it was a waste of nail polish. I will try your technique because is very neat.

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  26. What a cool idea! I've never heard of it before. My first and only attempt really sucked as well haha but I will practice like you did and hopefully get better!

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  27. This is the best post ever! I really like water marbles on others, but it is always getting so messy and I don't want to clean up so much. This is totally the solution for it! I will try this out very soon.

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  28. Well... sooooo... I went home yesterday just dying to try this out. It went so horribly wrong that I don't even now where to beguin!
    It just would not stick to my polish! Then a put a layer of topcoat on and waited. Still did not work. It just would not stick to the nail. Bummer!

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  29. Beatlemarta - Maybe you should try not waiting too long for your polish to dry, and trying to catch it when it is just tacky, but not wet. It's cold here in Canberra, winter/spring, so maybe where you are it is hot and your polish is drying too quickly?

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  30. Hummmm... maybe so. In Portugal we just now welcomed Autumn. I'll give it another try then! Thanks a lot!! :)

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  31. Oh my word! That is an amazing idea!!! And to think I found your blog via a google search on peripera nail polish :-S Now following you!

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  32. Genius! I can't wait to try this as I, too, am water marble challenged :-p

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  33. I tried my first ever water marbling with this tehcnique and so far it was a success! :) Well, I haven't actually transferred the designs to the nail yet, so we'll see how that goes. Anyway, thanks for sharing. This was the inspiration I needed to try water marbling. Previously I just figured I'd be wasting a lot of polish, but with this technique I didn't. :)

    I have a question: what can you do to prevent air bubbles forming between the sheet of plastic and the polish? Blotting the plastic with a tissue doesn't help since the bubbles are under the polish and I only managed to make them worse by popping them with the tissue. :P They weren't there when I drew my design in the water so they must form when I dip my plastic in there. How do your dip your plastic in the cup, is it level with the water or at an angle?

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    1. Interestingly I never got any air bubbles, only the water bubbles on the top, which I blotted with the tissue. I usually place the plastic onto the paper from one side and lay it across to the other side, not just placing it on top. I don't know if that will make a difference.

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    2. Ok, thanks. It must be the angle then.

      I just transferred my first design on my nails and made quite a few mistakes. :) First the under coat got too dry so the design didin't transfer completely. I tried patching the bald spots by adding some polish there and pressing the design again, but you can tell the difference when you look closely as the two designs didn't quite match.

      Doing my other hand I didn't wait long enough for the under coat to dry, so on one nail I lifted out all the polish after pressing the design on.

      THEN I was pressing the wrong side of the plastic to the nail (wtf, really :D) and obviously the design didn't transfer. So I pressed harder, and the under coat got smeared. x)

      And then I got a cat hair stuck between the under coat and the design, haha. :D

      But still I think these turned out OK for a first try. I'll definitely do some more of these. Thansk again for sharing, and BTW you have a very nice blog overall. :)

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    3. Thanks for sharing, this made me laugh!
      I often still make the too dry and too wet mistake and I'm always one to get a cat hair in my polish too! :D

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  34. I really love the idea of this method, and I'm wondering whether one can make the water marble pattern, let air-dry, and save it to transfer to the nails at a later date . . . I may try this and see if it works^_^v

    Thank you so much for the great tutorial!

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  35. For the LOVE!!! I am going to be FOREVER grateful to you for this post!! My kids always want me to marble. but i HATE!!!! the mess!

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  36. I really love your method and would love to try it. Out of curiousity, what did you use to clean up the excess from around the nail? Does it just come off with nail polish remover on a qtip or do you need to be agressive?

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    1. I just did clean up with a brush and some acetone, it's not too bad. A brush is easier to use than a qtip, unless you get those pointy one.

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  37. Wow I have always loved the marbled effect but been to scared to try it out. Great job and thanks for the links :D

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  38. This is such a fantastic idea! I would have never thought of this! I love water marbling but always hesitate to do it because I hate clean-up.... Thanks for the idea!

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  39. Thank you so much for this technique! I used it and totally loved it. It wasn't coming off cleanly, so I ended up doing a crazy collage instead. I don't think i'll ever do normal marbling again - too many great moments lost to the finger-skin/tape!

    I hope you don't mind, but I linked to you from my blog (in my first post!).
    Check out my attempt at http://turquoiseopal.blogspot.com/2012/07/hello-nail-polish-bloggers-of-world-i.html

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  40. this is absolutely brilliant! Thank you so much for the tutorial! I have tried and failed miserably at traditional water marbling, this tutorial gives me some hope, at last!

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  41. OOh, this is great! I'd really like to try a marbled pedicure, but the idea of trying to water-marble my own toenails sounded slightly insane. Now I can try it!

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  42. hey.. wat kinda polishes do u use? pls recommend sum cheap ones..

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  43. Soooo cool! This is a great technique! I tried the regular water marbling once. Once. It was sooo bad. I will definitely be trying this! Thanks!!!!!

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  44. I have to try this! I fail at water marbelling too! Thanks for posting!

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  45. Nice idea. saves the fingers from water marble mess

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  46. This is exactly how I do my water marbling! Great minds lol, except you're three years in front!

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I live in Canberra, Australia with my husband, Mr Five and Miss Three. My blog is all about nail polish, and a few other bits in between. You can contact me at morenailpolish@iinet.net.au