Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Dry Marble Tutorial

Hello loves, how is everyone today?  It's a beautiful day here in PA so I can't complain. I am getting tired of the same old nail art so I decided to try something I have never done before. Now I am an old hat at water marbling, I have probably done over 200 different combinations, and while it is gorgeous, it is getting a little "blah" for me. But dry marbling? What is this I hear of? And why haven't I ever tried it? Well alas, it is pretty darn simple to do for all you water marble haters out there. It is a bitch, believe you me, there are days I want to break a bottle (liquor not nail polish,  I'm going for the beat down) over the head of the person who invented it. And it is much, much cleaner. You won't have polish covering 90% of your hand when you are done. (but if you do, I can't be held accountable). 

Ok, on to the pics then I'll tell you how I did it....

Colors used:  Essie Licorice
                                     Sally Hansen Lacey Lilac

Pretty cool right? And I promise it is not hard.  Here's what I did. 

  1. Paint your nails with your base color. It is supposed to be thick, but putting it on thick from the get go was not working for me so I did a very thin coat on all of my nails and cleaned up my cuticle area with a brush and some acetone. 
  2. Once that was dry, I went ahead and did a second pretty thick coat on one nail. Immediately after putting that 2nd coat on, I grabbed my lighter color (lavender in my case) and put a few dots on top of the nail, not too thick not too thin. It should be enough to spread out a little bit but not too much that it runs off the nail. 
  3. Using a safety pin or a toothpick ( I like to use a toothpick), GENTLY swirl the dots that you just made with the base color.  If you do this too hard, you will have lines on the nail with no polish. I found that the less I swirled, the better it turned out. A few swipes will do you just fine.
  4. Repeat these steps, doing each nail individually. The polish has to be very wet for it to spread correctly so you have to move quickly. 
  5. Use a nice thick top coat to blend everything together. A few of my nails didn't look too great but once I applied topcoat, it was like magic. Everything came together just perfectly.
  6. I did find that using a dark color as the base and a lighter color for the "swirls" worked really nicely. 2 bright colors didn't have as much "POP". Using a light base and a dark 2nd color also looks really pretty.
  7. Don't get discouraged....I think I did my ring finger on my right hand 5 times. (I did both hands and kept this on as a mani, thats how much I loved it).  Every nail is not going to turn out the way you want the first time, at least mine didn't. Don't give up, nail polish is finicky, it will happen.
This is a really cool alternative to water marbling with a similiar effect. I think I actually like the finished look of this better. 

Of course I did not create this design or concept. I am simply showing you my way of doing it with some tips that I hope will help you. If anyone knows the creator of this, please let me know so I can give credit where credit is due. 

Last but not least, I promised my little guy Nicholas (everyone wave hi) that I would post a picture showing the beautiful necklace he got for me with his own money. He used up all of his savings to get this for me (which wasn't much, bless his little heart).....he really is the sweetest little guy.  Have a look at momma's bling!!

There you have it kids...my version of the dry marble and a little bling bling to close things out.

Send me pics of your dry marble, I would love to see the different color combo's everyone uses.




  1. Wow! I had no idea that this wasn't a water marble until you said it. Great mani!

  2. Thank u so much!! It looks very similar right? I can't believe I haven't tried this before!!

  3. I have never been able to do water marbling at all so I am going to try this. I've seen this around the blogosphere for a while but can't really say I know who came up with it. Yours turned out so well! I used to hoard marbles when I was a kid (I always wanted to play with the boys but they didn't like me because I was so bossy) so this reminded me of some of my favorite black marbles.

  4. Water marbling is definitely an art. I honestly have no idea why I love it so much. It's a pain for sure. This was so easy!! Now that u mention it, it does look like the marbles we used as kids. Lol