Sunday, December 19, 2010

Candy Cane Lane

In keeping with the Holiday spirit, I have condensed the Twelve Days of Christmas into six days, where each day there will be a different nail design, up until Christmas Day.

First up, Candy Cane Stripes!

image from

The two nail polishes used in this manicure were OPI Alpine Snow Matte and American Apparel Downtown LA.

Paint on your base coat color. For the candy cane stripes, it makes it easier if you paint the white layer on before the red layer, rather than trying to layer white over red.

I used a matte white because of its quick drying time, and the stark whiteness of Alpine Snow Matte, to better contrast the bright red polish I am layering on top.

For Step 2, using your scissors or an X-acto knife, cut very thin strips of blue painter's tape, trying to keep each strip relatively even to all the rest.

One the nail, lay down the tape strips so that the white/negative space inbetween the tape will represent where the red polish will be. The idea is to have a repeating pattern of one large red stripe surrounded by two smaller red stripes on both sides of the large stripe.

Depending on how long your nails are, you can repeat this pattern up and down the length of each nail to have a complete candy cane effect.

Paint the red nail polish following the length of the tape to get an even coverage. It is fine to completely cover the nail (with the tape on) in the red polish, just as long as you make sure to press down firmly on all tape strips so there are no gaps where polish can squeeze under. When pealing off the tape, make sure to do so right after painting, removing the tape by pulling it in the same direction in which it is on the nail.

For Step 3, simply add top coat.

I did not wait long enough after painting my layer of red polish, so I had a bit of streaking where the red overlaps the white, but this will not be a problem if you give your second layer of polish (the red layer) enough time to dry. Rather, while you can sometimes layer top coat over polish that is a bit dry to speed up the drying process, here I would recommend to wait until the second layer is completely dry before adding a top coat.

And here is the final look....

Days 1 and 2 of Christmas are complete! I hope you've enjoyed this Candy Cane look. Feel free to experiment with the size of striping, the number of stripes, the colors used for your candy cane stripes, or anything else you feel like trying.

On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me,
a partridge in a pear tree.

On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me
two turtle doves
and a partridge in a pear tree.


  1. this is so pretty and christmasy! i love it! *sigh* i love your nails :)

  2. nice! Im thinking of using a striper for mine. Im not that good with the tape yet. It just means mine will be wonky :P

  3. Very nice! I just did a candy cane design using blue painter's tape as well. However you are much neater then me.

  4. Thats absolutely gorgeous! :)

  5. Looks awesome, ready for christmas whohooooo :) *wants blue tape*

  6. Wow these came out just like candy canes! awesome. :)

  7. Fabulous. Your nails look positively edible. Mmmm... Candy canes...

  8. So festive and fun! I haven't used painter's tape yet, but really want to since you do such a great job with it!

  9. wow this is so awesome! they really do look like real candycanes :)

  10. I'm definitely going to try this, great tutorial.

  11. @kelliegonzo: Thank you so much! (I love your swatches, btw.)

    @Lisa: I've seen some very good nail art done with a striping brush, but alas, that's why I have to use blue painter's tape...I'm not so good with free handed nail art. I'm sure your candy cane stripes will come out lovely, and I'd love to see if you do try!

    @Cores da Ju: Thank you for the complement!

    @Carolina: Thank you!

    @Jin: I just checked out your Candy Cane manicure and I don't know what you are talking about when you say it isn't neat - it's beautiful (love the extra touch of the flowers)!

    @Honi: Thanks! And thanks to the link to your blog!

    @Iris @ Thanks! I'm certainly feeling festive with wearing Christmas styles around on my finger tips!

    @Rachel Marie: Thank you! I wasn't sure if they really looked like Candy Canes or whether they just looked like they were red and white stripes. I'm glad they resemble the candy they're supposed to!

    @Ice Queen: Why thank you!

    @Freshie: Thank you! I greatly recommend trying the painter's tape. It's lots of fun once you start trying it!

    @Amanda: Thank you! I'm glad they actually look like the candy I was trying to resemble!

    @Ash-Lilly: Thanks! I do hope you try it!

    @Polish&Konad: Thank you!

  12. What amazing and christmasy mani. Thanks!!


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