Tutorial: Gradient Water Marble

Hi everyone!

It’s Water Marble Wednesday and today I have a sort of tutorial for you. I decided to create a gradient water marble and share the steps with you. This is the final look:

Painted Fingertips | Water Marble gradientDuring the 31 Day Challenge in September, I created this look in shades of blue. My blue version turned out a little better but I have still decided to show you the process for creating this version. If you’d like to see a quick video, I will be sharing one on my Instagram account later today.

First up, here’s a summary of the steps:

Painted Fingertips | Step by step gradient water marble tutorial

Now for a more detailed breakdown:

Painted Fingertips | Water Marble Tutorial: base colourThe first step is to give your nails a base coat – sorry for the lousy picture of this one. In this case, I went with a coat of the lightest green I’d be using (Essence Hello Spring!). As you can see, at one coat it looks a little patchy. That doesn’t matter because the base is only intended to help the marble look opaque and it doesn’t need to look perfect. In a case like this where one of the colours in the marble is very light, I will use it for my base. Otherwise, I will usually use white for my base. Painted Fingertips | Taped nails for a water marbleMy next step is to tape around my nails in order to make clean-up a little easier. You will need to do some clean-up anyway, so there is no need to be precise with the tape, just place it more or less around your nails.You will have to excuse my blurry picture – this is the first time I have tried taking pictures of my process, so I still need to learn a bit.

Painted Fingertips | Drip in the polishes for a water marble For the actual water marble, I use an ordinary old glass and fill it with water. As you can see by the ring of dried polish around the edge, it has been used for many marbles! I knew that I did not want my lightest colour to spread all the way to the edges of the glass, or the stripes of my gradient would become too broad to fit on a single nail. Instead, I started with a few drops of Sally Hansen Parrot to contain the rest of the rings. Painted Fingertips | Water Marble Tutorial: bullseyeI then created my bullseye by dripping in the polishes I was using from lightest to darkest: Essence Hello Spring!, Sally Hansen Parrot, Sinful Colors Hey, You!, Essence Beijos de Brazil, Essie Pretty Edgy, Essence The Green & The Grunge, and Essence Magnetics Majestic Green. Painted Fingertips | Water Marble Tutorial: Dip fingerThis is possibly the easiest type of water marble to try, because once the bullseye is created, there is no worrying about creating a pattern and swirling the polishes around. Instead, just select the part you think looks best, carefully line up your nail, and dip it in. Painted Fingertips | water marble before peeling off the tapeOnce you’ve done all your nails, it’ll be very clear why you taped them up before the time. The polish gets everywhere. Painted Fingertips | Pre-cleanup water marblePeel the tape off and you will still have plenty of cleanup to do. Painted Fingertips | Topcoat your water marbleI like to topcoat before I clean up, both to protect the actual marble from being smeared by nail polish remover and in case I go skew with the top coat. Painted Fingertips | Clean up your water marbleFinally, I clean up any stray polish with a flat brush dipped in nail polish remover. Painted Fingertips | Water Marble gradient Voila! These came out with a couple of little ‘mistakes’ (the string of lighter polish across my index finger being the main one) – mostly because it’s hard to take pictures or video while you are busy doing the nails! But overall I am happy with them. Painted Fingertips | Water Marble gradientWhat do you think? Is this a look you would try?

Since this was my first tutorial, I’d also love to hear your thoughts on the tutorial itself. I know my pictures during the process were poor quality, and I’ll work on that in the future. Did you like seeing a step by step tutorial for this look? Were the steps I gave helpful? Are there any other specific looks you’d like to see tutorials for? Please leave a comment and let me know!