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Monday 8 July 2013

How to | Konad

 OPI Strawberry Margarita

In the past couple of years, nail art has becoming more and more popular with the introduction of the infamous 'crackle' polishes and recently, the release of magnetic nail polish.  About a year ago, I discovered Konad, a company which sold the tools needed to create your own nail art using a simple stamping system. The tools you need to do this process are fairly cheap too, I got this set which contains everything you need for only £15. 

The special tools needed to use Konad to stamp your nails are an image plate (with the designs on), a scraper (to scrape excess nail varnish off the image plate), a stamp (to stamp the image onto your nails) and Konad Special nail polish.
What else you need:

As well as the special stamping items, you ill also need a base colour for your nails, the one I'm using is OPI's Strawberry Margarita. You will also need nail polish remover in order to clean the stamper and scraper after use and also to clean around the edge of your nails. 

Step One - Paint your nails using a base colour:

You will need a base colour in order to stamp your designs onto. I used OPI Strawberry Margarita because its a bright pink which reminds me of summer. You can use a top coat if you wish, personally I don't use one as it isn't necessary.

(Tip: Put down a piece of paper while Konading so you don't get marks all over the surface) 

Step Two - Cover the image plate in Konad special nail polish:

 After painting your nails in your base colour and letting them dry you will need to choose a design from the image plate you want to stamp on your nails. Konad sell image plates for £6 each, however I use this set from Bundle Monster which has 25 image plates for £17. I have both these and Konad plates and find there is very little between the two. It just depends on the designs that you prefer. I chose Image plate 205 from Bundle Monster for my design.

The first thing you need to do is cover your desired image in special nail varnish, completely covering the whole design (unless you only want to stamp part of the design). You don't need to be neat with this as the next step will get rid of the excess polish. 

Step Three - Scrape off the excess polish

 The next step is to scrape off the excess polish from the design so the design will be clear on your nails. Simply take the Konad stamper and scrape the excess polish onto the piece of paper.

 Step Four - Stamp the design: 

 The next part is the most fun part, but also the part where mistakes are often made. You will need to stamp the design from the image plate onto your nail. You need to make sure to not be too firm or wait too long when doing this or the design won't transfer properly. I find the best way to do this is to roll the stamper over your nail from left to right. When stamping the design onto your nails be sure not to drag the stamper away as this will smudge the design. Simply lift the stamper away and your design should be intact. If you do go wrong, use a bit of nail polish remover and gently remove the design, being careful not to take off the base colour.

Step Five - Clean the excess nail polish from around your nail:

 Sorry for the blurry close-up photo, it was very hard to try and clean my nails and take a picture of it with only one hand! After you've stamped the nail design onto your nails you will have excess nail polish around your nails. Simply take a cotton bud soaked in nail polish remover to clean up the nail.

 Step Six - Clean up the stamper and repeat Steps 1-5 for the rest of your nails

Clean up the excess nail polish from your stamper and continue steps 1-5 for the rest of your nails.

Step 7 - Add a topcoat to your nails

Finally, add a top coat to seal in the design and to make sure it lasts longer. I use the Konad top coat as this ensures that the design doesn't smudge and it also provides a very glossy finish. However, this is not required and popular top coats such as Seche Vite work just as well. You need to make sure that you use a light hand though, as too much pressure and the design will smudge.

Step 8 - Admire your nails!

The final result

The final effect of this is truly beautiful and I always get so many compliments on my nails whenever I use this. It looks like it takes ages and that you've spent the day in the salon getting your nails done, however, I find this now only takes me about 10 minutes to do. I think the small price for the essentials really are worth it as the only thing you need to repurchase are the special stamping nail polishes. I really love the effect that this creates and it is definitely one of my must-haves for any nail polish lover! You can purchase the tools needed to achieve this from Konad.

Has anyone else tried Konad? If so, what did you think of it?

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