How to guide: Sunset perfect nails

Sunset Nail of London
Image credit: Anna Carruthers
  1. Start with a clear base coat to prevent any unfortunate shading.
  2. Apply a plain white (Revlon’s White on White, £6.49) over the whole nail. This step is optional as the white will not actually be visible but it will make the overlaying colours more vibrant.
  3. Cut up a piece of make-up sponge to roughly to the size of your thumbnail. On the sponge, stripe an orange (Barry M’s Block Orange £2.99), next to that of a pale red (Maybelline’s Sparkling Strawberry £4.29) and a bright red (Rimmel’s Double Decker Red £2.99).
  4. Gently dab this all over the nail in order to create a sunset. The first application may be too pale so wait until it is dry and then sponge on more.
  5. If you wish to go for a night time rather than sunset effect, simply use different shades of blue.
  6. For the detail use a plain black polish (Nail Inc’s Black Taxi £11.00).
  7. The buildings will of course vary according to which city you decide to depict but the technique remains the same
  8. For any block buildings a single swipe of polish with the provided brush will suffice. To add windows use a dotting tool/cocktail stick and dot on uniform blobs. Do not add too many as this detracts from the overall silhouette effect
  9. Adding a curve such as on the roof of St Paul’s Cathedral or the London Eye is best done with a striping tool, which can be bought cheaply online. The advantage of using a striper over a cocktail stick is that the line remains unbroken for a longer period of time and appears much smoother on the nail.
  10. TIP: When drawing buildings and landmarks, try to preserve the background and make the sky visible through structures such as the London Eye. Too many skyscrapers will severely degrade the nail colouring and will ruin all the effort you have thus far put into creating the gradient.
  11. When you have finished with the buildings apply a clear top coat to add gloss and make your design last longer.
  12. Have a Happy New Year!
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