January 04, 2014

Striping Tape - Episode I

Hello readers! I've had some striping tape sitting around for a few months but hadn't worked up the time/nerve/courage to actually give it a try. In honor of my 'Moar Nail Art!' new years resolution I decided to take the plunge. The results were... better than I anticipated. Based on reading other nail blogs and forums there were two key tips that stood out. 1) Wait until your nails are 100% completely dry before taping. Not dry to the touch or just after using a fast drying topcoat. Dry all the way through. I used a mani that I had already had on for a few days already as my base colour, so no issues there. 2) Make sure you pull the tape off while the polish is still when for crisp edges. Ok, I think I can handle that. I used Enchanted Polish Octopus's Garden as my base colour and China Glaze Cords as my taped accent colour. Here's what I came up with and how I did it.

 1) Tape a star pattern onto your nails using three pieces of striping tape.  For my design the pieces didn't really need to extend up past the top of my nails, but I found that made it easier to pull them off later.  I also taped up both hands right from the start.

2) Use your accent polish (CG Cords for me) to fill in the three triangles at the bottom of your nail. Then while the polish is still wet, peel off the striping tape.  For this design I found painting a whole hand and then removing the striping tape from that hand after worked alright.  Then, just repeat for the other hand.

3) I wanted to go a little further with my design so I used a small nail art brush to paint a smaller triangle of the base colour (EP Octopus's Garden for me) inside the center taped triangle.

4) Wait for the polish to become tacky/not easily smudge-able and then add your favorite top coat.

I really happy with this, especially for the first try.  As long as you make sure that your base polish is 100% dry and you peel the tape off while your accent polish is still wet striping tape isn't so hard.  I could see it being a small nightmare though if you didn't adhere to those two guidelines though.  Have you given striping tape nail art a try?  Do you have any must know tips to make it any easier?  I need to scour the interwebs now for other striping tape designs that catch my eye and can go on the "nail art to try" list.

Happy Polishing!

- Michelle


  1. Turned out great!!!

    I have a little striping tape...maybe I will practice before removing current mani. I had great success with my first water marble attempts last year. Then I whiffed some gradients and didn't keep trying any other techniques. I think I just need some practice and more layers of gradient and top coat, instead of scrapping it too soon. :)

    1. I gave it a try on one nail. I just had to nubbinize, so I just put on 3 coats of Sinful Colors Hottie last night. I taped a similar pattern and put on one coat of Sinful Colors Blue By You. One of my lines wasn't pushed down enough and a small spot filled it, but it's a neat effect with the glitter underneath....I'd do it again as accent nail...I don't know if I'd have patience to try to do all nails the same and they'd be "off" .....

    2. I have failed miserable at water marbles but can do a decent gradient. Seems we're nail art opposites :P.

  2. I used striping tape for my Christmas tree nails, it was my first time using tape, and it turned out great! I just made sure that my tape was stuck all the way down to my cuticles so that I didn't get any weird edges. The tape can lift pretty easily so checking before you lay down color is a good idea.

  3. Incredibly mani! I love the colour combination!

  4. Love it, I just had to bookmark this post to copy it someday :-)