Here’s a little fact about me– my toenails are ALWAYS painted. Okay, maybe not always. I did take the polish off before my scheduled c-section because they told me to (and I am a RULE FOLLOWER), but, other than that… yeah, pretty much always painted.
My fingernails are often polished up purty, too, but not with the consistency of my toes.
Why do I always paint my toenails? Well, the simplest and most honest reason is just that I enjoy it and I like the way they look. Toenails are fun because the polish tends to last much longer than on fingernails. Finally, my feet are sort of abused– I walk, run, hike, and make them endure flip-flops and high heels all.the.time. As a result, they’re not always in beautiful condition. Pretty, colorful toenails help me feel a little better about them.
While my fingernails pretty much just get a couple coats of some color or another, I sometimes like to mix-it-up when it comes to my toes. As I mentioned earlier, the color on toenails doesn’t chip off as quickly, making the effort not quite so futile. Also, since you’re working on your toes, you can use your dominant hand the whole time– definitely helpful when it comes to detail work!
Polka-dots are easy peasy and a great place for anyone to start, even if you’ve never done anything in the way of nail art before. They’re fun and girly and not-too-crazy.
Want to give them a try?
Here’s what you should have handy:
- a pale, opaque polish (if you want a surefire perfect base, go for a color labeled “French Tip White”– it will be a perfect thick, opaque, simple white)
- a bright, opaque polish (any color will do, but try to avoid shimmers, sparkles, and sheers)
- a clear top coat (optional, but it’ll help your hard work last)
- a toothpick (any kind, even the frilly kind, as long as it’s wooden)
- a small piece of aluminum foil (I usually use about a 4″ strip)
- something to separate your toes (if you don’t have actual “separators”, just use a paper towel threaded in and out between them– it works just as well)
All set? Let’s get started:
1. Separate your toes. This will help prevent excessive smudging.
2. Polish all ten toe nails with the pale, opaque shade. If you’re a speedy painter, allow them to dry for about three minutes before attempting another coat. If you’re a little slower-paced, you can apply a second coat right away.
3. Allow the pale shade to dry about five minutes. While that’s happening, fold your foil into a small square, about 2″ x 2″. Hold the brush from the colored polish over the foil and allow a few drops to fall onto it, forming a little “polish pool.”
4. Cut the tip off of your toothpick, leaving a blunt, round end.
5. Once the five minutes have elapsed, dip the blunt toothpick in the brightly colored polish pool and touch it to your toenail, creating a polka-dot. I can usually get 2-3 dots from each dip. Repeat until toenails have the desired number of polka-dots and you’re pleased with the layout.
6. At this point, you should give them another 5-10 minutes to dry. You can walk around and do things in your home, but don’t go trying to put on socks or any such thing.
7. Once the dots are completely dry to the touch, apply a clear top coat to seal and protect them. And you’re done!