BEAUTY CLIQUE > SKIN AND BODY skin and body how-to

Try a snakeskin manicure

02:00 Wed May 9 2012
Melissa Williams-King, MSN NZ Beauty Editor
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Calfornian nail artist Terri Silacci started a sizzling craze when she invented the first real snakeskin manicure - using naturally shed snakeskin, cut to fit nails and sealed with a gel varnish. Celebrities went wild for the look, but it’s a little pricey and high maintenance for most women.

We’ve found some easier options to help you nail this trendy look.

The crafty DIY approach
If you’re a dab hand at doing your own nails, you can pull this off. You’ll need two pieces of mesh, fishnet or tuile, one with slightly larger holes than the other, two makeup sponges, three polish shades and a top coat. Start with a neutral colour coat. When dry, take the largest gauge mesh and wrap it around the nail. Sponge on your lighter polish shade. When dry, take the smaller gauge mesh and repeat the process, using your darker polish shade. Don’t be too worried about precision, as a variation of colour depth just adds to the effect. Remove excess polish from around nail bed and top with a clear sealer. (There are many YouTube tutorials on this topic.)

The easy DIY approach
Sally Hansen Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips, $17.95, are stickers you can apply to your nails at home. They come in a huge range of colours and patterns, including snakeskin. (Again, if you need some visual cues, go to YouTube for demos.)

The in-salon option
While some nail technicians might painstakingly apply a snakeskin pattern for you, the quickest and most effective way to get a snakeskin effect is with Minx Nails or Sheekee Nails, which are available in selected New Zealand salons. Both these brands offer long-lasting decals in a huge array of designs. The manicurist will cut and shape them to fit, then they are cured under a UV lamp to set.

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