How To DIY Vena Cava’s Reverse Half-Moon Manicure

By Alexis Wolfer

We all want to be at the cutting edge of fashion. We want the hottest new hairstyles, the trendiest clothes and the most on-trend accessories. But when our budgets keep us from owning Vena Cava’s entire collection or building a guesthouse for Ted Gibson to move in to, we turn to our beauty routines and DIY it with a little help from our beauty-insider friends. Luckily for you, we’ve got the inside scoop – and we’re apt to share.

At Vena Cava’s Fall/Winter 2010 show at New York Fashion Week, Butter London’s Founding Creative Director, Nonie Creme, was backstage fashioning nails soon to hit the runways (and our most-coveted lists!). If history has taught us anything, Nonie Creme is the one to look to for the trendiest tips for our talons. (She did, after all, pioneer the muddy purple hue that dominated our digits last fall.) So, what marvelous mani does Nonie have us coveting now? The reverse half moon manicure with an edgy, tonal twist on – get this – press-on nails!

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Need a refresher course in manicure vocab? The half moon manicure is usually a reverse on the traditional French manicure: instead of painting the tips of the nails in white (or any other light hue), a half-moon shape is painted towards the bed of the nails in a lighter shade. The reverse half moon, though, paints the semi-circular shape at the nail bed in a darker shade, which, as Nonie explained to The Beauty Bean backstage, “is a new take on the vintage nail.”

According to Nonie, in the 1920s the half moon manicure (in which the bed of the nail was left polish-free) was a status symbol that showed how much time you could afford to spend on your nails. Assuming you – like us! – don’t have hours to spend honing your non-dominant-hand nail painting skills (or just lack the patience to wait for coats to dry, like backstage during Fashion Week), though, Nonie recommends using press on nails.

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As a bit of a self-confessed false nail advocate, Nonie told us that she recommends press on nails for women to use at home because of how much easier (and cheaper!) it makes it to do an over-the-top manicure that may otherwise be off limits. And you know what – after seeing it ourselves – we had to agree! With a cheap set of pre-glued, press-on nails (note: stay away from glue-ons that can damage your nails), we could easily get the graphic, tonal look – without wearing our patience (and fine-motor skills) thin.

To get the look, paint press-on nails with 3 coats of Yummy Mummy ($14), a medium beige that works on every skin tone, and, once dry, carefully paint the half moon shape in Union Jack Black ($14) a glossy black patent-leather like shade. When dry, pop them on your fingers and you’re ready to go – with nails that instantly give you trendsetter status  (on a budget!).

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