Franken Fun

7:59 PM Laura 13 Comments

**Just your daily reminder to enter my contest/giveaway if you haven't already.**

So, because some people are unfamiliar with the frankening process, I want to put your minds at ease and inspire you to enter the contest! I'll try to break this down as best I can.

1. You're going to need clear polish. Usually I buy Wet n Wild clear stuff for 99 cents a pop. It's cheap and then I can use the bottles for frankens.

I dump the clear polish in here. Not very pretty, I know. It's cloudy because I dumped a topcoat in it that wasn't completely clear, but it so far hasn't affected anything.

2. You're going to need funnels. They don't have to be fancy, just functional.

I just roll up index cards and tape them.


Hey look! You can see through it!

3. Know what you're aiming for. It really helps to have an idea in mind. 

One way of doing this is to gather up all the colors you're not really feeling anymore and then see what you can make from them.

Another way is to have an idea in mind and then go find the colors to make it.

4. Start funneling. I didn't take pictures from the beginning since it didn't occur to me until afterwards that I could make a tutorial of sorts.

I always start with a little bit of clear, just so that I use up less of my polish. Then, I add in the colors I want in the amounts I want until the bottle is about halfway full. Then, shake it like a polaroid picture.

The reason you initially fill the bottle halfway is because it's easy to make adjustments, but once the polish is in there, you can't take it out. 

You can also add things like eyeshadow and glitter. They're really useful, and that's why I have two funnels: one for polish and one for glitter.

The funnel greatly reduces mess!

5. A few examples. Here are two frankens that I made recently. As you can see, the glitter on the left has settled. This is because glitter is denser than average clear polish. 

If you want the glitter to be suspended, you need to either buy a suspension base or add in some storebought polish that already has glitter suspended in it, because it has a suspension base.

The franken on the right has just been vigorously shaken. I'm still debating whether I should spring for a suspension base, but for now shaking works fine.

By the way, these are Beatles song-inspired frankens. The left is Octopus's Garden, and the right is Her Majesty.

Here is all the glitter settled on the bottom. (sorry for the cat hair)

Here is Octopus's Garden after a vigorous shaking.

6. Swatch your frankens and make adjustments. Chances are it's not going to be perfect right off the bat. That's why you swatch it! Then you can adjust it to your liking.

Here they are swatched. As you can see, Her Majesty is too sheer and the glitter is too sparse. 


Aaand here she is again. Much better! I still think she could use a leetle more glitter, though.

Aaand that is your crash course in the art of frankening. It's really not difficult, it doesn't have to be messy, and it's really rewarding to be able to custom-make your own polish. I hope this has helped someone and maybe inspired you to enter my contest!

Happy mixing!


  1. I actually have a pack of plastic dollar store paint mixing trays and toothpicks in my franken supplies. When I franken, before I start mixing polishes I will mix up a tiny bit just to see if the polishes I'm mixing will give me the effect I'm looking for and an idea of rough amounts. It's not exact but it certainly helps and doesn't use much polish.
    I do have a polish to enter into your contest but lucky me we have a typhoon moving in so there's very little sun to be had for photographing lol. I'm hoping I'll see some in a few days otherwise I'll have to send you the pics I have.

  2. Thanks for this tutorial of sorts, because I've been wanting to try a franken but I didn't really know how to start. Maybe this will be my weekend project...

  3. You made it all sound so easy! Thanks for letting me know there is such a thing as suspension base. Living in the stixs like I do, unless I run into it on the web with an explanation of what it's for, I have no idea it exists. LOVE you suggestion to add mineral eye shadows and such. That would give that micro find shimmer vs. it always being larger glitter and larger holo shapes. I wondered what folks could use for really micro shimmer look because I never see glitter that fine.

  4. I might have done it the wrong way :P But it worked! xD

  5. @Meeka: I know lots of people use paint trays but I'm lazy, lol! I can't wait to see your franken. :D

    @Let's Get Nailed: It's a lot of fun! I could franken all day. Seriously.

    @beachgal: If you want to get into srs bsns frankening, is a good place to look. They sell bases for different kinds of polish, pigments, and even franken kits. I haven't bought anything from them but I know that's where most people who franken a lot get their stuff.

    @LimitedAddictionNails: I think everyone does it a little differently! This isn't the best tutorial, I may try to add stuff later to make it more detailed. All that matters is that you find a method that works for you!

  6. Hey I recognize those bottles!! Very nice tutorial!

  7. This tutorial is awesome! I'll be honest and say that I already spend too much time mixing chemicals to spend my free time doing it, but the idea of customizing your own polishes is very cool :)

  8. This is really useful tutorial, thanks. :)

  9. @Fingers: Yep, I've got fifty of 'em!

    @Larie: It is a lot of fun!

    @Sandra: No problem!

  10. Wow, ok really glad I read this BEFORE i attempted... hehe

    me being clueless was going to make a HUGE mess! (:

    good timing with this one! ;)

  11. I'm back to school already and living in my dorm, so I was disappointed I couldn't enter this contest because it sounded like tonsss of fun! But after reading this it makes me feel like I can enter and make something cool! I can't wait to see what I can come up with! Thanks for the advice!!

  12. I didn't think to ask this when I first commented, but do you think paint, paint mixed in with nail polish is a bad idea? Would that even work?

  13. @Meg: Lol, good luck.

    @Beauty on a College Budget: Hmm. I'm not sure. I don't think I'm the right person to ask about that one! I don't know how the chemicals react and all, so maybe ask someone majoring in chemistry? Lol.


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