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Transparent Truth About Sheer Nail Polish

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
The Transparent Truth About Sheer Nail Polish

QUESTION: Is there a trick to getting sheer nail polish to look pretty, not streaky? Whenever I apply, my nails look striped and awful.


ANSWER: Soft, sheer nail shades are staples in many women's manicure routines for good reason. Such colors (like the famous Essie Ballet Slippers) give nails a healthy appearance, look professional and appropriate for day and evening, and work with all types of clothing styles. Getting a sheer manicure at the salon is foolproof, but achieving the same even, smooth effect on your own is a lot harder. The biggest problem: streaks. But there is hope! Here, a step-by-step guide to help you give yourself a streak-free, sheer manicure:
Step 1: Use the right base coat. Many base coats are clear, so while they help polish stick and prevent it from staining the nails, they don't give you an even-toned surface on which to work. Instead of clear base coat, try a shimmery pearl base coat (Seche makes a good one) or a ridge-filler/base coat in one (ridge fillers like OPI Ridge Filler come in sheer colors and often contain fibers to smooth the nail bed).

Step 2: Pick a thin polish. Avoid thick, gloppy polishes when shopping for sheers; instead, go for a thinner, more liquid formula. This type of polish will glide onto nails better than a thicker one.


Step 3: Prep your polish brush. To begin painting nails, dip your polish brush into the polish. Lightly run one side of the brush along the neck of the bottle; the other side should have a small blob of polish at the tip; this is just what you want.

Step 4: Sweep from cuticle to tip. The keys here are a light touch and a quick hand. Lightly place the brush in the middle of your nail, at the base right next to the cuticle. Sweep the brush up to the tip of the nail. Repeat two more times, one on either side of the first swipe. Don't continue to go over already-painted areas; this causes the polish to become thicker (read: more opaque) in certain spots, lending a streaky appearance to the finished product.

Step 5: Do a second coat. The more coats you apply, the better your chances of getting a streak-free look. You can even add a third coat if you like!

Step 6: Protect with top coat. Adding a final layer of top coat can sometimes smooth out any stubborn streaks. From More Magazine
post #2 of 10
Great post Diane! I've found Club Monaco's n/p to be the best "liquidy" on the market, but since Sephora no longer carries them, I've moved to Essie. OPI is way too goopy for me.
post #3 of 10
Diane, you are an excellent artilcle poster! Keep up the good work!

Its appreciated

Originally Posted by Diane
The Transparent Truth About Sheer Nail Polish

QUESTION: Is there a trick to getting sheer nail polish to look pretty, not streaky? Whenever I apply, my nails look striped and awful.


ANSWER: Soft, sheer nail shades are staples in many women's manicure routines for good reason. Such colors (like the famous Essie Ballet Slippers) give nails a healthy appearance, look professional and appropriate for day and evening, and work with all types of clothing styles. Getting a sheer manicure at the salon is foolproof, but achieving the same even, smooth effect on your own is a lot harder. The biggest problem: streaks. But there is hope! Here, a step-by-step guide to help you give yourself a streak-free, sheer manicure:
Step 1: Use the right base coat. Many base coats are clear, so while they help polish stick and prevent it from staining the nails, they don't give you an even-toned surface on which to work. Instead of clear base coat, try a shimmery pearl base coat (Seche makes a good one) or a ridge-filler/base coat in one (ridge fillers like OPI Ridge Filler come in sheer colors and often contain fibers to smooth the nail bed).

Step 2: Pick a thin polish. Avoid thick, gloppy polishes when shopping for sheers; instead, go for a thinner, more liquid formula. This type of polish will glide onto nails better than a thicker one.


Step 3: Prep your polish brush. To begin painting nails, dip your polish brush into the polish. Lightly run one side of the brush along the neck of the bottle; the other side should have a small blob of polish at the tip; this is just what you want.

Step 4: Sweep from cuticle to tip. The keys here are a light touch and a quick hand. Lightly place the brush in the middle of your nail, at the base right next to the cuticle. Sweep the brush up to the tip of the nail. Repeat two more times, one on either side of the first swipe. Don't continue to go over already-painted areas; this causes the polish to become thicker (read: more opaque) in certain spots, lending a streaky appearance to the finished product.

Step 5: Do a second coat. The more coats you apply, the better your chances of getting a streak-free look. You can even add a third coat if you like!

Step 6: Protect with top coat. Adding a final layer of top coat can sometimes smooth out any stubborn streaks. From More Magazine
post #4 of 10

Re: Transparent Truth About Sheer Nail Polish

thanx for sharing
post #5 of 10

Re: Transparent Truth About Sheer Nail Polish

Great article!
post #6 of 10

Re: Transparent Truth About Sheer Nail Polish

Thank you
post #7 of 10

Re: Transparent Truth About Sheer Nail Polish

Good advice.
post #8 of 10

Re: Transparent Truth About Sheer Nail Polish

Thanks for posting this article! I'm definitely going to keep this in mind next time I try the sheer nail polish.
post #9 of 10

Re: Transparent Truth About Sheer Nail Polish

Thanks.... Great Info
post #10 of 10

Re: Transparent Truth About Sheer Nail Polish

Thanks for the post!
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