Sunday, January 29, 2012

Epilepsy Awareness Nails

In case you can't tell, the ribbons on my nails are purple, and purple represents epilepsy. Today my nails have a very special meaning, and I'd like to tell the story of my personal journey with epilepsy. So here we go...

I was diagnosed with Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy in April of last year after I had a grand-mal (big) seizure for the first time. What I didn't know was that I'd been having seizures for years before that. I was scared to find out that there are over 40 different types of seizures, and I have three different kinds.

The main type that I have are myoclonic, which means 'jerking' and they effect the top part of my body. I used to have them every morning in sixth grade, and they continued all the way up until my diagnosis. Each individual seizure lasts a couple seconds, but I was having them for up to a half an hour everyday. I had always thought they were normal; everyone has those jerks when they're tired, right? I guess not.

The worst part about the myoclonic episodes are that I'm conscious and I know what's going on. I can feel them coming because I have 'auras' (something that warns me when a seizure is about to happen), but by the time the aura comes it's too late to do anything. Part of my seizures are that I feel extreme fear throughout the episode, and it makes me scream, whimper, and cry sometimes when they happen. I've never seen myself have one, but when I have a serious one I can feel my eyes roll back and my arms and chin come into my chest and twitch. It's painful and scary, but once it's over, it's over, and I can go on with the rest of my day.

Something that surprises people is that I am not triggered by flashing lights. In fact, flashing lights are one of the least common triggers for people with epilepsy. I am triggered by sleep deprivation, air deprivation, and strong emotions.

I am now on medication and the seizures are much more controlled, but I still feel handicapped by the stereotypes that society has given me. There are days that I feel like it's holding me back, but I've learned that this disorder is a gift. Who's to tell me that I can't be the next da Vinci of nail art? Or that I can't light the world on fire like Alfred Noble? Who knows, maybe I'll rule the world like Caesar and they'll make a statue of me like Alexander the Great. There's no reason that I can't because all of the people above have made history and done incredible things, even though they all had epilepsy, too. Over the course of the year, I've learned that I am Hailey, and I have epilepsy. But epilepsy does not have me. I am living day by day, seizing each one as I go.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Japanese Inspired Nails

These nails were surprisingly simple--all I did was pick a light base coat then use my tiny paintbrush to do the rest! To find the japanese characters, I just looked online. There were some pretty cool ones, but I only wanted to do two so that they would stand out on my nails rather than just all be the same thing. The thumb one means "love" and the middle one means "God." Not only are they beautiful characters, they have beautiful meanings. The cherry blossoms are simple and they make the black letters really pop. For the base coat--I chose this adorable light green, which I love, but I'm sure it would good with light pink, too! To finish off the job I added a sparkly/shimmery top coat.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Make A Wish Nails

These nails are so easy and so adorable! They seriously took me like two minutes (not including drying time). All I needed was a light base color, black, white, a tiny paintbrush, and a bobby pin. For the black stem and white lines I used my paintbrush. No need for it to be perfect; I just made little random slashes. For the little black dot on top of the stem I used a bobby pin, but you could probably do that with the paintbrush as well! Super fast, super easy, and super cute!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Playing Card Nails

Starting on the thumb is the King of Hearts then the Ace of Spades, the Four of Diamonds, the Queen of Hearts, and the Two of Clubs. This design is very intricate and just this one hand took me a whole hour!!! The only tools I used were the super tiny brush and the bobby pin. There's no way to really explain how I did it besides saying that I found a picture online and tried to copy it... It's not the best. But practice makes perfect, especially in nail art! So keep on trying :)

Monday, January 9, 2012

Nail Art For Dummies

These are the basics you need for making nail art and designs. Not all of it is a necessity, but everything really helps if you're interested in trying nail art!

The polishes in the bottles are French Tip white by Orly and a simple top coat. I added the white to this picture not because I use it in every design, but because it is reeally important to buy French Tip white rather than just plain white. French Tip white is the only kind of white that shows up opaque on nails. It is not only found in Orly, though. There are plenty of other brands that carry it!

Right above the polish bottles there is a toothpick and an opened up bobby pin. I use the toothpick for really tiny dots, like the dots in my Rainbow Nails design. The bobby pin I use for making slightly larger dots, like in the Cupcake Nails.

Next to that is the foam I referred to in my Faded Zebra Nails. As you can see, I painted one purple stripe, then one blue stripe on top. Then I simply pressed it like a stamp onto my nails (with a white base color painted on them) then patted it a little until it looked blended. Simple as that!

Then there are five paintbrushes/dotters. The swirly designed sticks are the dotters. They are basically just super fancy toothpicks and bobby pins made specifically for nail art. They aren't a necessity if you have some toothpicks and bobby pins lying around! Under those are my paintbrushes. The one directly below is my super tiny brush, and I use that in designs like the Birthmas Nails. Under that is another tiny brush that is a little bigger. I use that one for zebra print. The last paint brush is for french tips and cleaning. I always manage to get paint on my skin, so after I'm done designing, I just dip that brush in nail polish remover and brush the mistakes away!

Under everything is a little piece of cardboard. When you dip your nail polish onto the cardboard it doesn't soak through like a piece of paper or a paper towel.

These are the absolute basics (minus the dotters and foam) for nail art! I hope this helps for anyone interested in trying this out :)

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Cheetah Print Nails

These nails are super simple and easy. Cheetah print is never exact, so there's a lot of room for error. I just painted my nails a bright pink base color, dotted the white dots simply with the nail polish brush (no bobby pin needed--there's no need for it to be that perfect), then used a bobby pin to outline the white with the black. Sometimes I'd put a little C shape around it, others I'd put one line on each side. Really, it's just abstract, and no one can tell if you mess up :) so try it out if you're interested in nail art, because this design is really easy!!