Nails of the Week: Patches


I don’t think I’ve done a post about nail art before and as I was pretty happy with how this turned out I thought I’d do a post on it. I’m not sure how Nails of the Week will work as a title, partly because these often last a couple of weeks, but I don’t do them often enough to do a nails of the day type post so it’s a work in progress title. The idea is from an old BubzBeauty video on YouTube which you can find here but instead if just normal nail varnishes I used a combination of gel and nail art pens. I have tried mixing them before but I didn’t get the right technique or combination and now I have I will definitely be using it more. This post is probably more about the combination of products used than the design but I will be doing future posts on my own designs and ideas, I just wanted to start with one I know works consistently.

I really like this look as it’s one that’s surprisingly easy when it comes to application and I’ve managed it even when my hands are fairly shaky with pretty good results. It’s amazing the difference adding the black outlines makes when it comes to that step. If you use gel and want to do nail art, even a different pattern, but it’s failed in the past it might be the best way to try it. This is done with a combination of Red Carpet Manicure gel nail varnishes and some Rio nail art pens I have had for years.

I have done this design twice recently and posted both on Instagram. The first was with brighter, more spring like colours, and a larger range, and the second was done with colours to go with my dress for graduation so used less. I’ve included photos of the first design, the one shows it freshly done and the other shows it after two weeks and, although there is a bit if wear on the tips and maybe some other places, I think it still looks good at the end when I took it off.

Processed with Moldiv

The products I have chosen are the Red Carpet Manicure gel nail varnishes in Sorbet Soiree (turquoise), Sands of Time (Nude beige) and Peach Chiffon (peach) as well as the Rio nail art brushes and pens which came in a set of seven (I think) and I’ve had them for years. I think they’re available in a lot of places and I have seen more recent versions in Argos if you want to get them from this brand. I have tried Models Own nail art pens (well, the black one anyway) but I just didn’t get on with it as well, though they do have a great range of colours so I’ll be trying them again in the future when they’re on offer I think. Red Carpet Manicure are available from Marks and Spencer’s, Asos and Sally’s in the UK and they normally cost around £12 – £14. Unfortunately the Sorbet Soiree and Peach Chiffon aren’t available any more from those sites as they were in a Spring range last year but they do have similar colours available now. I chose Seche Vite as my top coat as I have it, that’s pretty much the only reason as I have had other top coats I have liked more in the past.


The first thing you have to do is the gel part, you do the base with two coats as you would normally and then add the areas you want as patches. It is best if you can choose colours that work with one coat so your bails done get really thick but the Peach Chiffon colour needed two on top of Sands of Time and it still worked fine, just made the nails a bit less flat. The Sorbet Soiree turquoise was nice and opaque so one coat was enough. Then you set all of this with the top coat before you use the nail art pens or nail varnish.

Processed with Moldiv

I chose to use the Rio nail art brushes and pens as I find they’re great for control and they dry very quickly. If you’re going to use a normal nail varnish I’d choose a brand that dries quickly and it fairly thin so it’s easy to control. If you wanted you might be able to use a normal nail varnish for the patches, I will be trying this next and see how well it works for the next nail art design.

Using the pens draw on any designs on the patches, I’ve just stuck with stripes and dots as they’re easy but you could also leave them plain, I decided not to as I didn’t use many colours for the base and wanted some variation. The last step is to add the black lines around the edges of the patches and the stitches. These do t need to be all that straight, I’ve had wobbly ones in the past that look good too as it’s meant to be a patchwork look and they’re always hand made.

When you seal it with a top coat you might find that it runs a bit, or maybe that’s just my pens. It doesn’t matter if this happens, I just we t over the bits that got removed and it stayed pretty well for four days without a y top coat. I only added extra top coat today as parts of it were pealing off. This may be because I used Seche Vite but I think it would with any normal top coat on top of the gel.

When it cones to removing it I found that removing the normal nail varnish first before doing the steps you would for gel nail varnish removal helped to speed it up.

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