NOTD: Snakeskin

This is my baby girl, Nenya.

She’s my 20 year old ball python. I’ve had her since I was about 16, she was my first real pet who was really mine. Growing up my mom and our family had a few snakes–a rosy boa, a burmese python, and I don’t remember the other one. We also had an iguana growing up, named Spike Lee. I love scaley babies! Just as much as I love fuzzy babies 🙂 I know some people are scared of snakies but my babies are handled often and are very well-tempered. I have two ball pythons, Nenya (the girl, above) and Kirby, the boy, who I got a few years after Nenya. They’re in loooove 😀 Most of the time adult snakes won’t do well living in the same cage but these two have always worked well together.

Left: Nenya, female. Right: Kirby, male

I’m trying my best to take part in a 31-day challenge that a blog I follow is doing and I’m keeping up pretty well. Today is “animal print” day and I knew I just had to incorporate my first baby into it. I considered stamping but it just wouldn’t do. Thankfully my baby shed during the night and I had some healthy, fresh skin to use. I originally saw the idea using faux snakeskin and the tutorial said to put the faux snakeskin on the nail and then paint over it. Wait, what?! Ridiculous, I say! My baby’s skin still had some pigment to it so I just had to do a base color beneath it and it looked fantastic if I do say so myself. Don’t you agree??

It was tough to put on the nail, next time I’ll have to trim it down to a more reasonable size, but I think the end result was totally worth it. My pinky and middle fingers turned out best, that was done using the skin from Nenya’s head and it has larger scales. It’s also a much smoother texture. One thing I really liked about this is the skin was so easy to fully cover the nail. Normally I have trouble getting flat things to sit nicely on my nail because of the natural curves but since snake skin is intended to move a lot it was just a matter of stretching the skin in some spots.

If you’re interested in trying this (and I know you all are ;-D) here’s a basic tutorial

  1. First, get snake skin! Trim your skin down to approximately nail-sized pieces.
  2. Paint a nude color onto your nail and let it dry completely.
  3. Take a slow-dry topcoat and apply a thick layer to one nail. Lay the snakeskin onto your nail and using the large end of a dotting tool press securely onto the nail. You can gently press with your fingertip to ensure adhesion since snakeskin is (of course) waterproof and you won’t mess it up, just be gentle.
  4. Let it dry and carefully trim away the excess around your finger. I used an Xacto knife around the nail bed (very carefully) and nail clippers at the tip. I used a nail file to get the last bit of stragglers at the tip, though there’s still a tiny bit of unevenness. Move on to the next nail and repeat so your first nail can dry.
  5. After you’re done with all the nails, wrap your tips and use a quick-dry topcoat to seal and give a nice, glossy finish.

I can’t say for sure how long these will last but even if they only last today they are awesome and a definite conversation piece. It totally blows snakeskin stamping out of the water.

  • NYC Bryant Park
  • real snakeskin
Edit: so I, being the silly person I am, took a shower about 3 hours after doing these rad nails. They still look ok but some of the scales at the tip have peeled off. Washing my hands a couple times had no real effect on them but if you want these for a special occasion or you just want to have them all-day I suggest taking a shower first.
Advertisements

5 thoughts on “NOTD: Snakeskin

  1. Catherine says:

    This – is – awesome.

    I saw the name of this mani and thought “Oh cool, I wonder how close she got her stamping to look!” Then I saw the actual snake, “Oh cool, a pet snake to compare the final look to!” Then I saw your nails, “Woahhh those came out really great — wait… is that? oh snap!! It is!!”

    I’ll have to try this! One of my prof’s daughters has a pet snake… time to get some shed skin before the semester ends 😀

  2. […] as much as I loved my snakeskin manicure, the scales started to come off after my shower (shame on me for not showering first!) so I decided […]

  3. Kellie says:

    I have to ask…where does one get snakeskin??

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s