I mentioned in my first post of the new year that one of my goals for 2017 was to try watermarbling, and I’m pleased to say that this is one thing I can now cross off of my to-do list. With a little trial and error, and advice from friends who have done it before, I found the process to be a lot of fun, and not nearly as difficult as I thought it would be. I decided to use Fair Maiden’s Electric Mayhem cream collection for my watermarbling attempt, and was very happy with the results.
The Electric Mayhem Collection consists of: Party Animal, a bold, slightly bricky red cream; Wocka Wocka Wocka, an orange leaning yellow bold cream; It’s Not Easy Being Green, a frog green cream; Mah-na Mah-na, a bright teal cream; Gonzo the Great, a deep plum purple cream; and Who, Moi?, a bold berry pink cream.
Watermarbling: The Process
If you’ve never watermarbled before or never seen how it’s done, I highly recommend checking out some YouTube videos, as they’ll probably be more informative than this post. I’ll do my best, though. The concept with watermarbling is to fill a glass with room-temperature water, then let a drip of polish fall into the water and spread out. You then repeat with a new color, dripping polish into the center of the cup, letting it spread, and repeat, one drop at a time. You continue to do so with a many or as few colors as you want, until you have a bull’s-eye and the polish is no longer spreading out. Then, you take a watermarbling tool, toothpick, or other pointy object and draw a design. Once the design is ready, you dip your nail in, pick up the excess polish with an orange stick or q-tip, and then pull your nail out. You pick up the excess first so that it doesn’t stick back to your finger and mess up your design. Hopefully that all made sense. Like I said, watching a video might be more useful here.
For my watermarble, I dropped each polish in the cup in rainbow order to create a bull’s-eye. I believe I used 2 drops of each, for 12 total. The cup I used was probably bigger than I needed, but I was feeling the creative inspiration of Mondrian tumbler, and also figured the glass would be easier to clean as opposed to plastic. I used the watermarble tool to drag 8 equally spaced lines into the center and 8 equally spaced lines outwards. This created a really cool flower petal look, although I probably should have gone a bit more basic on the first attempt. All in all though, I was happy with how the design turned out and how the colors played off of each other.
Before creating my design and dipping my nails in, I used Ever After’s Purple Nurple Liquid Latex to coat the skin of my fingers around my nails. It applies easily and dries off quickly. Liquid latex is available from many brands, although of course I recommend Ever After’s. Purple Nurple is only $6 a bottle, and a great deal. If you don’t have liquid latex, you can use tape around your fingers to guard them, and save yourself some cleanup time. Once I’d coated my fingers, I created the design and dipped my finger in. Then I pulled up the extra polish with a q-tip, and pulled my finger out. You repeat this process for each nail, including creating a new design. I did end up redoing a few of my nails as I wasn’t always happy with the first result, but overall, I felt pretty successful. Then, of course, I had to clean up my fingers. The liquid latex pulled off smoothly and easily, and I had almost no excess to remove. What little I had I removed with a small makeup brush and acetone. I then applied Fair Maiden’s It’s Magic glossy top coat. And voila! I watermarbled!
Watermarbling: The Results
I have to say, given the struggles I’ve heard about watermarbling, I was pleasantly surprised with my results. I personally love tie-dye, and watermarbling with the Electric Mayhem Collection gave my nails a truly awesome tie-dyed look. The colors really pop, complement each other, and achieve a bright, electric feel. I only have positive opinions on the look and formula of all six shades, and will definitely be using them again, as I think they’ll be great on their own, for watermarbling again, or for stamping. If you’re looking for a sold cream collection, Electric Mayhem should definitely be a go-to.
Although the process certainly is time consuming, I hope to get faster with practice. I probably spent two-three hours to do both hands, from start to finish. That being said, my mani lasted all week, and I had a lot of fun creating it. I’m looking forward to my next watermarbling attempt, as I feel like this first try was pretty successful. It’s definitely not an everyday activity, but I’m curious to try more shades maybe some shimmers using this technique. On to the next adventure!