2015 Nail Game Strong

Happy New Year! Ready for 2015! New goals & inspirations.

My client of about 2.5 yrs now (and now one of my good friends) has always done the same nail design since coming to see me for the first time in Hawaii. She always did the iridescent silver glitter gradation. A few times, we used gold, or this past Christmas we used some red, but silver glitter was her favorite & regular. But today…our first new set of the year, she decided to change up her nail M.O. and do something different.
She chose a very chic design with simple colors & clean lines.

It had been a while for me to actually do some nail art, and it was so much fun! I love the design on her– more importantly, she loves it!

Her usual “mermaid glitter” is just going to have to take a vacay for now.

Natural nail gel overlay: CalGel #46 & #04


The line down the middle going up from the tip of the triangle at the base of the nail gives the illusion of lengthened nails.

I am so excited we got to try something new. It’s not too crazy of a design; simple, but not boring. Very chic!

If you’re a creature of habit– especially with nail designs, why not change it up a bit and welcome 2015 with fresh nails!

Thanks for visiting, and remember to keep your claws modish!


P.S. If you’re in need of amazing mermaid jewelry to accompany your modish claws, check out her shop: Misha Hawaii on Etsy.
Instagram: mishahawaii
You’ll love it! ♡


☆To view a collection of my work over the past few years check out #sbaeknails on Instagram


Alien Attacks

Just before I moved to the Bay Area in February, I had one of my former co-workers at the nail salon in Hawaii treat me by doing my nails for me. This was the last time I had serious claws. We went all out!

I had selected several nail designs I liked, and used them as inspiration. I’m really into aliens and super natural. I think alien shapes and images make for cool designs– clothes or nails. Eyes & Evil Eyes I am obsessed with! I even have an evil eye bracelet tattooed on my wrist, I have Evil Eye jewelry, & I’m always thinking about what “eye” things I can get. I’m also totally & beyond into triangles. They are definitely my favorite shape. Gold is my favorite metal color, and I just loved the pink & purple colors of the 3D cone shaped stones. They were perfect with monochrome color scheme I went with.
Shadé did such an amazing job on my nails!




This nail set was a natural nail overlay using CalGel and Trump Gel.

These nails don’t necessarily have an obvious theme, except monochrome, lines & outlines. Don’t be afraid to mix-and-match and flirt with the “weird”.

Thanks for visiting, & remember to keep your claws modish.


Happy Holidays!

It’s been a while! 2014 was a crazy one! I moved to CA and am starting everything from scratch. I haven’t been doing nails at all! Terrible– I know! But I finally got around to doing it just in time for Christmas.







If you noticed, my nails are short! My claws have been filed down to little shorties since June! It’s crazy but with my new job, it’s just impossible to keep my beautiful class intact.

This design was created using CalGel and Trump Gel. This nail set is a natural nail gel overlay. Gold & clear iridescent glitters with different sized gold hexagon Splash! brand holograms.

I’ll try to do better about doing nails & posting! Thanks for visiting! Happy Holidays & remember to keep your claws modish!



Happy Fourth of July

Happy Fourth of July to all the bloggers out there! Quick post today.

A set if gel nails for my client who has numerous parties to attend this Independence Day weekend!



All the art was done by hand using Trump Gel.

Have a happy and safe Fourth of July! Thanks for visiting, and remember to keep your claws modish!



So, another design trend that is still on the scene and doesn’t seem to be leaving is: galaxy nails.

I swear, they have been in and are still in. I think they are going to be a trend though the summer and all the way to winter. Just with more bling in the winter.

I find it to be easier to do with gels rather than regular polish. But it can be achieved quite easily with both mediums. However, I think it stands out better with gels.


This set of gel nails for the hands are actually sculptured nails. I used the soak-off hard gel by Trump Gel to sculpt the nail. We extended her natural nail about 3x it’s natural free edge length. Pretty awesome. These lasted
her about 4.5 – 5 weeks.

20130628-213129.jpg The toes were actually also done using Trump Gel. This was a natural nail overlay pedi. For this galaxy nail client, I through on a hint of more pink-ish glitter and we also added some AB Swarovski stones to add more oomph to it.

Try out this trend for the summer. You can even use a different base color instead of black. Say a navy, or you could even try out a purple. Have fun with it.

Thanks for visiting, and remember to keep your claws modish!


Bling On!

The season for glitter, sequin, and all things blingy is just starting to come through. Buuuuttt…unlike fashion, blinged out nails are always in. Always.

Whether it is a trip to Vegas, a birthday celebration, a wedding, or just because…well…you love bling, glitzy, shiny, and sparkly nails are the perfect accessory.

Personally, I love all things shiny. Whether it be stones, sequin, glitter, or holograms, I just need to have it. Glitz is my addiction. Pair that with my obsession with nails, and I might as well be a serious junkie. So, when I meet clients who love shiny things as much as I do, I get beyond excited.

Stones and– especially charms, can tend to become a challenge as far as getting them to stay on. It can be an even more difficult task when you are using regular polish instead of soft or hard gel. Here are my tips and methods for applying and keeping stones and charms on using polish and glue:

1. Apply top coat over the second coat of polish. You can use base coat if you have multiple stones to place and want to move them around. Base coat seems to slide the stones or holograms with more ease then top coat.
2. Place your stones/charms/holograms where you like. Once you are sure of placement, press down firmly.
3. Apply a coat of nail glue over of and around the edges of the deco piece.
4. Let dry and apply top coat. If you are worried, apply a second coat of glue to give yourself a peace of mind.
5. If you really want to upkeep and ensure that your bling stays intact, apply top coat once a week.

When dealing with gels, your bling tends to have a longer lifespan. However, it can be tricky, because the application of gels can change the shape and look of the stone. Here are some tips for applying your bling using gels:

1. Apply a thin light coat of clear gel and place your stone/holo/charm.
2. Make sure you are completely certain of the placement and positioning, then cure.
3. Dab around the object(s) with clear gel and make sure you fill any spaces/cover any sharp edges of the charm, then cure.
4. Apply a thin coat of gel over the deco, and cure.
** Some larger or slippery charms may be better applied with acrylic. Apply a layer of acrylic over the gel, place the charm, then cure. Steps 3-4.

My client was going to Las Vegas to celebrate her “Dirty Thirty”! She just wanted glitzy, unique, funky nails. Her birthday suit was a lacey black romper & gold accessories. So we incorporated lace and gold in her nail design to compliment her outfit. This is a natural nail overlay using Trump Gel, and glitter was Eriko. Stones are Swarovski.

This is another natural nail overlay. The soft gel brand is CalGel, glitters were Eriko. Swarovski stones.

Again, another natural nail overlay using CalGel (mixed #46 & #51), color gradation with clear Eriko glitter (#001) all over. This design is one of my favorites. It is subtle, but the accents with the stones and bullions give it some oomph. Stones are acrylic stones.

This was done with just polish and glue. I love the color scheme and the way they shine. Most of the stones are acrylic stones. Some are Swarovski.

This is a foot gel design. It is CalGel with Purnelle glitter. The flower on the big toes are charms, and the smaller ones, I made using holograms.

This client is one of my favorites. She is the sweetest person ever. She told me that she always felt her toes and fingers were “beastly.” But after doing this very first design for her, she could not stop smiling, and came back to tell me she bought bunch of new open toes and had so many compliments on her toes! She wasn’t so self conscious anymore. This was done using polish and glue. The crystals are all Swarovski.

Natural nail overlay with CalGel. Glitters came in a tower of like six colors from Claire’s. Stones are all acrylic; I bought them in a pack from Walmart. These are my nails.

My client wanted a “cool summer” look. Natural nail overlay using Trump Gel. Color gradation with Purnell glitter all over. I’m sorry, I can’t remember the color numbers. The stones are Swarovski.

Another natural nail overlay. Trump Gel Actually, this is a 2-week fill. The original design is all10 fingers with the black “heart” design. she came in for a fill and wanted to juste pump up the design a bit. We through some Eriko holograms on it.

This is a tip & sculpture gel extension overlay using CalGel #05 & #04. For the sculpture, I used Bio Sculpture Gel. Deep French with acrylic stones, and charms from Korea. This is a girl who just loves the bling. She asked me to “go all out.”

Which style is most you? How much bling is for you?
Whatever it may be, keep in mind that it’s always in season for glitzy nails.
Bling on!

Thanks for visiting. Hope you enjoyed it. And remember, don’t forget to keep your claws modish!


Sketches & Ideas

So…I’m supposed to be studying for my LSAT (which is in like…3 weeks)…but all I can think about is nail designs. Eek!

I have a very special “client” who has asked me to get her nail game on point. She is one of my best friends since childhood, and she made a surprise visit back home to Hawaii from San Francisco for two weeks. So, of course I am going to go all out and give her exactly what she wants!

Nails I did for her last time she was in Hawaii. Lavender purple color gradation with clear glitter over. Skull & lightning bolt charms. I used CalGel (mixed #06 & #01). The glitter was Eriko #001.

And on top of that, I have to go back in to the salon in a couple days (I took the entire month off to study), for a day, to meet the needs of some regulars who apparently, will just die. Ha! Nail junkies, I tell you. I love it. And I appreciate their fierce loyalty.

I don’t know if many people take the time to do this, but if I know ahead of time that I will be doing a new set, I like to sketch out the design(s). It is easier to visualize the end result– not to mention it is a great road map to use when you have finally decided to get started. I will do this for some of my more “difficult” clients who regularly come in and ask for the “just surprise me” option. But I usually do this, mostly, for my own nails. Because I found that the part about doing my own nails that takes so long is the deciding of the design. If I sketch it out, at least I have a guideline to follow.

My nautical spring nail set I did back in May, based on some sketches. This is a natural nail overlay using CalGel.

Summer leopard I did for myself. Again, natural nail overlay using the soft gel, CalGel (mixed #46 & #01 for the nudey color, & used #04 for the black– no pigment). I drew the leopard print with the gel to give it a less defined, and more blurred look.

Some design ideas I had for one of my regulars back in 2011.

All of these really helped me move quickly and figure out what exactly I wanted to do. Not only that, but once I got the ideas out, I could focus my energy on the best and fastest way to executing these designs.

While taking my “study break,” I decided to sketch up some ideas for my biffer’s nails. She gave me a color palate, a theme, and sent me some photos she liked. So, at least I wasn’t in the total dark. What I came up with:


What do you guys think? Which one is a your favorite? Any suggestions? I wonder which one we will end up doing…
Definitely will post photos of the final nail set!

Ok, back to the studies. Thanks for visiting.
And remember to keep your claws modish!