18 June 2013

DIY Nail Polish - Frankening

Have you ever thought about making your own nail polish? Maybe you've mixed a couple of your store bought polishes together to create a new color or even tried to add a little bit of sparkle?

I became very interested in franken polishes about a year and a half ago, and I did all of this research, bought some supplies, and created a couple of pretty decent polish combinations. Then, I got pregnant and the hobby took a back seat. I don't really have time to paint my nails, let alone make the stuff, so I'm passing on some of this secret knowledge to you ;).

What is frankening?
Frankening is essentially making your own polish using a base, pigments, glitters, or even existing polishes. Think Frankenstein! Let your creativity run wild!

Supplies needed for frankening?
If you're starting off with a "blank canvas" you'll need a suspension base and empty polish bottles. This base is specially formulated to hold up, or suspend, the pigments and glitters you put in.
One of the most common questions asked is "Can I used a clear polish as a base?" Honestly, I wouldn't recommend it. I've tried it, and the glitter and pigments didn't mix well and settled to the bottom. But feel free to experiment.
Next, you'll need glitters and pigments. What kind, you ask? Well, you'll need solvent-resistant glitters and mica pigments that are made for mixing in solvents. You can't just buy glitter from the craft store, because regular glitter will bend and the color will bleed off, making a pretty ugly mess.
Also, you'll need stainless steel mixing balls. These won't rust.
Then you'll need mixing materials such as a funnel to pour your base and ingredients into the empty bottles. You could also use some wooden sticks, mixing trays, and other supplies that will make your experiment easier.

Empty bottles, Glitter, Suspension base

Now that you have all of your supplies, it's time to start creating!

Where to buy?
For US, I bought my suspension base from Wonder Beauty on Etsy here. I purchased the bases in ready to go bottles (as pictured), because I thought that would be easier for me. They have other selections as well, so just have a look around.

If you're in the UK, there's a site called Mica Moma that sells frankening supplies. I've never purchased from them, but have a look around.

As for solvent resistant glitters, pigments, mini bottles, and stainless steel balls, I got mine from a bunch of different places, but I can only remember a couple. There are Glitties and TKB Trading. If you do a google search, you'll find a whole bunch of different places that sell frankening supplies.

Here are some polishes I created with friends.
My franken polishes!

Have you ever made your own polishes? Would you ever?

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