Monday, September 19, 2011

A Post by the Boyfriend - AJ's Guide to Frankening!

Good afternoon my fellow Lacquered Lovers! So after my post about cutting all my hair off this morning, I figured you guys could use a treat! So, the amazing boyfriend (or AJ as he is known in real life) decided last week that he wanted to start to "franken," or make his own polish colors! Below, he gives you a step to step guide (with pictures!) on how to do it with his newest color, In It To Win It! I hope you all enjoy his post!


I stare on as the collection grows. Newer, prettier colors in bottles that come in more fun-shaped bottles with crazier applicator wands arrive by the truckload every day. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but I couldn't help but feel that there was something about the nail polish world that didn't sit well with me. It lacked something so rare, unique, precious, really really awesome, and (of course) modest. After some concerted thought, it dawned on me: there wasn't a polish that screamed, "AJ!" I hadn't applied my unique touch to the field. It wouldn't be fair to let untold millions of lacquered-fingered followers live their lives without knowing what I'm capable of. And, in all truth, what they are capable of, as well!

In this post, we will investigate the world of "frankening". Frankening is the act of creating your own unique nail polish. The pros: your nails are one of a kind, never replicated, never duplicated, and never to be found in stores. The cons: I can't think of any, either. I actually started completely on a whim. Carly had come back with a haul, or maybe had mentioned her encounters with ManGlaze, and I jumped to my feet and said, "well, if they can do it, so can I!" A few hours later, after a quick trip to Rite-Aid, we were stocked with a few ninety-nine cent bottles of base coat and a slew of glossy, shimmery, sparkly colors to make you go, "ooh" before you went, "aah". After a little experimenting, we granted ourselves Ph.D.s certifying ourselves professionals in the art of polish production. We decided to share the wealth. You lucky readers, you!

What follows is a step-by-step guide to creating your own nail polish. You will note that, in our how-to, we created a holographic color. We did so using materials that aren't necessarily "street legal", and so their mention in the process is excluded. ONLY MAKE HOLOGRAPHIC NAIL POLISH AT YOUR OWN RISK! In this tutorial, the base polish used was Revlon "60-Second Fast Dry" Grape and we used NYC base coat.

Above: Revlon Grape (on the right)


bottle of discount top coat
bottle(s) of nail polish (note that the color(s) used, when mixed, may change and become brilliant! Mix a couple dollops together and try a few swatches on newspaper or nail wheels to get an idea of the color you want to make)
the SECRET INGREDIENT (for holographic nail polish)
discount eye shadow powder/palates
a plastic straw
a pair of scissors
napkins and nail polish remover (for clean-up!)

STEP ONE: Clear off the surface you want to work on and put down some napkins or newspapers that you can pour out polish onto. Be careful not to get polish on finished furniture or upholstery!
a surface to work on that can get messy

Above: Frankening Station

STEP TWO: Bend your straw in half and clip the end on a diagonal. Clip the other ends of the straw on a diagonal. You now have four pointed scoopers you can use to break up eye shadow with to add shimmer and pigment to your nail polish creation!

Above: Clip the Straw

STEP THREE: Take the polish you want to use as your base color. Pour out about one-half to two-thirds of the bottle on your newspaper or working surface. This is a great opportunity to mix polishes and play with different combinations until you get the perfect blend of awesome! Be sure to mix colors together well so you know what the final product would look like in the bottle. Pay attention to proportions -- i.e., if you use just a little bit of that sparkle to get your original polish creation just right, remember you'll have to use a little bit more than you use in your swatch to get the same distribution in the bottle.

Above: Seeing the color and pouring some out

STEP FOUR: Pour in your pigments and polishes! Using the base color bottle as the cauldron, start reciting all the lines from True Blood and Macbeth that you can remember while you whip up your new potion! Note that if you are making a holo, the best time to add the SECRET INGREDIENT is just after you pour out half of the original bottle of polish, before you start adding any new polish. Be sure to leave about one-quarter of room at the top of the bottle. You can also add the eye shadow pigment now, too, if you would like. Make sure you grind up the eye shadow so that it's as fine as possible or else your polish will get lumpy! Be careful not to overdo the eye shadow -- too much makes your polish VERY thick!

Above: Adding in pigment

STEP FIVE: Add a little top coat. You'll want to make sure your polish creation is going to be adhesive, and the clear top coat also gives you more volume without going overboard on pigment. As you use your new nail polish time and time again, you can keep your supply stocked by adding a little top coat every now and then.

Above: Pouring in Top Coat

STEP SIX: Shake, shake, shake! And just when you think you're done shaking, shake it some more! I hope I don't have to mention to make sure you've screwed the top of the bottle on very tight so you don't get polish all over you, and be sure to keep your whole hand wrapped around the nail polish bottle so it doesn't go flying out of your hand. Try rolling it between your palms to get good top-to-bottom distribution.

Above: I don't have a picture of AJ shaking but this is him working on a Franken!

STEP SEVEN: Try your new polish as a mani or pedi and make your friends jealous! You are awesome. Look at that great new color! Don't be afraid to tell everybody that you're wearing the newest, coolest polish ever made, but also be sure to tell them that they can get in on the fun, too! Send them over to Lacquered Lover and make sure you tell them to follow!

Above: AJ painted his new polish, In It To Win It, on my toes!


If your polish is too thick, try using a little nail polish thinner.
If you don't like your polish after applying it at first, try adding a little sparkle or more color! Pour out a little of the color you don't like and try to play with the ratios.

If you end up with nail polish all over the bottle, especially under the lid or on the screw-top, be sure to clean it with nail polish remover or else you'll never be able to share your crazy new creation with anyone when it seals shut!
Revlon makes "60-Second Fast Dry" polishes that are great for holo-ing...

Have you ever made your own nail polish? Do you have any tips, tricks, or suggestions that you've discovered in the act of frankening? Any must-try combos? Be heard below!


  1. Hi AJ!! I love this new franken of yours! Great job!!! And hello to Carly too and I love her new hair cut!

  2. What a nice boyfriend you have :) I really like the franken and would love to see more pictures of it!

  3. Everybody loves AJ! You're the most manly girly man I've ever seen lol!

  4. awwiez, aj you're awesome! love this color!
    i wonder what this secret ingredient is...i JUST wonder...LOL!

  5. Frankening seems so hard - but it looks fun!

  6. WOW! awesome job AJ! I wish my hubby was that creative!

  7. He did an awesome job. I like this color !

  8. wow thank's for the tip mr. franken man. awesome! mm i need to try eye pigments. i love guys that wear polish. ooh and guys who make their own polish! even more hoooot. it shows they aren't afraid to be creative.. i looove this post. so cute. hehe.

  9. Hahahahahahaha Carls Aj is awesomesauce for doing this!!


Thanks for reading and commenting Lacquered Lovers! I love hearing from my readers! If you'd like me to check out your blog, feel free to email me! Any comments with links to posts will be deleted but I'm happy to answer any emails!


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