Tutorial: Advanced stamping aka DIY decals

Hello fellow addicts,

Today I have something different, it's my first time creating a tutorial, I hope it all makes some sense.

Advance stamping, reverse stamping, DIY nail decals or wraps... Whatever you may call it, it all boils down to more or less the same thing (correct me if I'm wrong). It's nothing new and there's probably heaps of tutorials on the internet already, but I still wanted to show you how I do this. Personally, I like watching/reading a few different tutorials about the same technique, since one person might do something differently and you can pick the best from everyone's knowledge to get the best results possible! Maybe you could still learn something new from my tutorial, who knows?

First, assemble your tools. For this you will need:

  • Stamping plate: Preferably with an image that you can colour in later
  • Stamper and scraper
  • Stamping polish (or any polish that works for stamping)
  • Different coloured polishes to colour your image later
  • Top coat
  • Nail art brush, dotting tool, tooth pick or whatever you prefer to paint with
  • Baking sheet
  • A pen or pencil to mark areas on your baking sheet
  • Tweezers
  • Nail polish remover and ear buds for clean up
I've decided to show you how I made the hearts design from the Bornprettystore review which was my previous post.

Step 1: Grab a sheet of baking paper and roughly draw small areas. I made a square for the full nail design and small circles for the single hearts. You'll want to draw them slightly bigger than your nail or in case of the single hearts, slightly bigger than the stamping design.

Step 2: Flip over the paper, so your drawn lines are on the back. This is important or else you'll get pen markings on your stamper! (It's OK, the pencil markings will come off if you use some tape).
Next will in the shapes with a generous amount of top coat. I used Essence Gel-Look top coat, it's slightly thicker which is ideal for this technique.
Now set it aside and let it dry while you have a snack or paint your nails with a base colour.

Step 3: Once the top coat is dry (I let it sit for about 30 minutes) you can start stamping your designs onto the sheet. This is one of the reasons you drew bigger areas, so it's easier to aim and also the lines let you see where your top coat even is.
As you can see I messed up one of the images, I'd recommend making more decals than you'll actually need, in case you mess up one or the other.
Again, let this dry. Normally it dries quite fast, I'll let it sit for 10-15 minutes at least.

Step 4: Now comes the fun part: Colouring in your decals! Take a nail art brush, dotting tool, tooth pick or whatever you are comfortable with and fill in all the spaces in your design. You don't have to be super neat, it's OK if you cover some of the black lines since we'll be flipping the design over later anyway.
And yet again, let this dry. I normally wait anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour so I don't smear my designs. I didn't take a photo for this next step, as you can't really see a difference, but finally add another generous layer of top coat and let everything dry one last time. Normally I'll just put the sheet aside and call it a day, so it has enough time to dry completely.

Step 5: Using a pair of tweezers, gently push the sides of the image off the baking paper (another reason why we made bigger areas to stamp on). Once you lifted a bit of the edges, you can use your fingers to gently remove the decal from the sheet. Be VERY careful as the decal is thin and very fragile, it could also warp it you pull it too hard!
Normally I will kind of roll the decal onto my finger, like you can see on the photo above.
Lastly, trim the transparent edges with a scissors or you can just stick the whole decal on your finger and remove the excess with nail polish remover.

To apply the decals, simply paint a layer of topcoat and let it dry until it's just a little bit tacky, then carefully place your decals onto your nail and gently press them down. Finish off with another layer of top coat and you're done!

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