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July 25 2014

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Nail Art, The Next Dimension

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We know we’ve placed ourselves firmly in the anti-nail-art camp over the past few seasons as the late-aughts nail boom has skyrocketed out of control, but we’ll always have a soft spot for pieces of 3-D finger flair. Why? Because a while back, circa 2007—which, it should be noted, predates the current mass hysteria for crazy lacquer colors, glittery gels, hand designs, and the like by about two years—we made our first visit to Tokyo, home of the wackier-the-better manicure. There, amid all the kitsch and color in Shibuya, we wandered into a mall where we laid eyes on what, at first glance, appeared to be a standard nail salon. But upon further inspection, we noticed what looked like a candy-store’s-worth of plastic bins teeming with tiny confections, everything from beads and sequins to miniature mushrooms, anime characters, hearts, stars, pieces of pizza, and the like—the better to deck-out your plain-old polish with. While Swarovski crystals and similar forms of bedazzling ultimately caught on stateside, the tradition of sticking anything and everything onto tips is less of a common practice here, although it’ll soon be a popular pastime if Nail Rock has anything to say about it. As part of its seasonal offerings, the British brand has released Frou Frou, a collection of festive-themed appliqués: Holiday boasts candy canes and snowmen; Fruit Burst is packed with apple and orange slices; Thanksgiving includes a bounty of pies and lollipops; and Bears is as advertised. Simply apply your lacquer of choice, place pieces on top while the varnish is still wet and tacky, then seal with a topcoat.

$5.99 each, available at www.ulta.com.

Photo: Courtesy of Nail Rock

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