Category Archives: Frankens

TKB Planetary Sampler Duochrome Pigments – Swatch of the Day

TKB Trading Planetary Sampler Swatches

Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Neptune, Pluto
Angled to better show duochrome

A long, long time ago I promised to post swatches of franken nail polishes made with TKB Trading’s Planetary Sampler – seven different color shifting pigments which can be used in nail polish. The pigments are also sold separately as Travel to Mercury, Travel to Venus, etc.

I’ve had the polishes sitting out for months – and here are swatches! They are really lovely, and I’d highly recommend getting the sample set if you’re into frankening polish at all.

I made these polishes by mixing a bit of pigment with suspension base, and the pictured swatches are each one coat of the polish over a black creme.  I’ve also photographed the polishes underwater to better show the duochrome.

TKB Planetary Sampler Swatches - Underwater

Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Neptune, Pluto

And some slightly blurry close-ups:

TKB Trading Travel To Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars

Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars

TKB Trading Travel To Jupiter, Neptune, Pluto

Jupiter, Neptune, Pluto

Venus and Pluto are my favorites – what about you?

Grey Frankens!

I’ve been really into nail polish lately, and especially into frankening my own.  I’ve also realized that while I’m generally not a fan of full-coverage type chunky glitters, I really like big glitter that is more sparsely dispersed through the polish.  Here are a couple polishes I’ve made recently – all from one $1.99 bottle of NYC Sidewalkers nail polish, TKB suspension base, and glitter!

First, nail wheel swatches of all three – not in the same order as above, but I think it’s clear which is which (they don’t have names yet, but I’m accepting suggestions!).  You can see the holo shimmer in the ones on either side fairly well in this photo – for some reason it didn’t show up as well in my nail swatches.

Grey Frankenpolishes

I’ve worn the squares-and-moons polish as a full mani. This is 2-3 coats with topcoat (there was some dabbing of glitter):

Next, a swatch of the with the most glitter. Moons, hearts, squares, hexagons . . . This is one coat of Sinful Colors Jungle Trail plus two coats of the franken.  The franken can be worn alone, but it’s fairly sheer and I’m too impatient to wait for four coats to dry!

And finally, the scattered holo with no glitter shapes. This is one coat of the franken over one coat of Sinful Colors Jungle Trail. Again, I just couldn’t get the holo-ness to show up, even in blurred shots.

In case you’ve also been bitten by the frankening bug, my scattered holo glitter is the Luminosity glitter from TKB trading. All the shaped glitters are from Glitter Unique.


This post is from Project Swatch. All rights reserved.

TKB Mermaid Collection Iridescent Pigments Swatches & Review

TKB Trading Mermaid Collection: silver white, gold dust, blue diamond, seawitch green, fairy violet, siren red
This post is a little bit different; the polishes I’m going to show you are not commercially available.   I mixed them myself using pigments and suspension base, both available at TKB Trading (the bottles are also from TKB).  These six polishes are made from TKB’s Mermaid Collection iridescent pigments
When I was ordering from TKB, I couldn’t find any swatches of nail polishes made with these pigments, and although they looked neat, I really had no idea of how they would look. So, I’m posting these swatches in case anyone else is searching for photos of how these pigments look mixed up in nail polish base.
TKB Trading Mermaid Collection Swatches:
Silver White, Gold Dust, Blue Diamond, Seawitch Green, Fairy Violet, Siren Red

When I mixed up the nail polishes, I wasn’t sure what density of pigment would look best. So, these first swatches are all six pigments very concentrated in the polish.  This gives a glass fleck type look – it reminds me of some Zoyas.

Here are close-ups of the swatches:
TKB Silver White, Gold Dust

Silver white is a true, light silver.  Gold dust is a yellow-gold; it’s similar to Essie As Gold As It Gets at the right density.

TKB Blue Diamond, Seawitch Green

Blue Diamond is a sapphire blue; Seawitch green is a pale green. It looks more blue in the picture than it actually is because of the reflections from the blue.

TKB Fairy Violet, Siren Red
Fairy Violet is my favorite – it has multiple shades of purple in it.  Siren Red is a pink-red that seems to have some orange in it too.
I also wanted to see what these would look like if they were mixed more sparsely into the nail polish base, so I tried it out with Blue Diamond.
TKB Blue Diamond
I love this look too – I’m definitely going to mix up bottles of each of the colors at a lower density like this one. 
These are really gorgeous pigments – if you are into frankening nail polish, I highly, highly recommend them.  I bought a set of samples of each color (2.5g each) for $7.50; you can also buy individuals samples and larger quantities.   I think I used about 1/5 or less of a sample bag to make half a densely-packed mini (5ml) nail polish, so I’d guess that you could make a couple densely packed 5ml nail polishes plus several sparse ones with one bag. 
If you’re new to frankening, make sure you get suspension base; if you mix these with regular clear nail polish they will probably sink to the bottom rather than remaining evenly mixed throughout.  I used TKB’s Glamour base, but I think their Luster base would work for these as well.  

This post is from Project Swatch. All rights reserved.

Frankening Fun

Nail polish frankens

Lately I’ve been having fun playing with nail polish – first, I experimented with making a jelly nail polish out of a clear plus a creme, then I started mixing commercial nail polishes to come up with my own colors.

Last week, I decided to jump in the rest of way – I ordered supplies to franken nail polish “from scratch” – mini bottles, glitter, suspension base, and more.  The glitter arrived earlier this week, and the rest arrived today.  I spent several hours this afternoon playing around! There was a lot of trial and error (note: suspension base goes in the bottle BEFORE the glitter), but it was a lot of fun.   All the nail polishes on the nail wheel in the photo above are my frankens – some are made from suspension base and glitter; some from mixtures of commercial nail polish; and some are combinations of both. Here are close-ups of some of my favorites.

The glitters:

The black jellies:

And my surprise favorites – these are combinations of Wet n Wild’s scattered holos (Blue Wants to be a Millionaire & Hannah Pinktana) with other polishes.

If you want to play too, there are lots of e-tailers selling supplies to franken with. I recommend for most supplies – everything arrived packed very well, and in the stated amount of time.  They don’t have very many types of glitter, so I ordered some from them, and more from


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Nail Polish Frankens!

Nail Polish Frankens

I spent a couple hours a few afternoons ago playing mad scientist and mixing up some of my storebought nail polishes into frankens. Some people create franken nail polishes using glitters and suspension base; while I’m potentially interested in that idea, thus far I’ve just been mixing store-bought nail polishes to make up new creations.

Instead of buying empty nail polish bottles, I’ve been using Sally Girl nail polish bottles; they’re frequently on sale, which brings the price down to about 60 cents a bottle, and since I don’t use very many, that’s affordable for me. I also like the small size.  I buy the clear ones, pour out the nail polish, then mix up my frankens in the empty bottles

My most successful frankens to date have been my jelly nail polishes – see my first one here! – and my jelly glitters.   In my most recent frankening session, I mixed Milani Jewel FX Gold, a Forever 21 polish with red microglitter and red hexagons, and a black creme to create the below black jelly polish with gold & red glitter: it’s now one of my favorite polishes ever!

my new favorite franken

Do you ever mix nail polishes to come up with new ones?


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DIY: How To Franken Your Own Jelly Nail Polish

DIY Jelly Nail Polish Franken

DIY Jelly Franken

I’ve been playing around with nail polish a lot lately, and I’ve been getting interested in frankening. Thus far, I haven’t gone so far as to buy suspension base & glitters to make my own nail polish from scratch, but I’ve been combining store-bought nail polishes to create new colors and finishes.

My most recent adventure – and most successful polish to date – was a super-easy combination of clear polish with a coral creme to make a jelly polish.  Depending on the light, the polish looks either orange or strawberry.  On my swatch wheel, I have one, two, three, four coats of my franken, the a full-strength coat of the creme I used – Revlon Delicious, from the Colorstay line.

Jelly Franken Supplies

Jelly Franken Supplies

Making this polish was super simple; I started off with a bottle of Wet n Wild clear polish, and poured out half.  Then, I added some of Revlon Delicious – I’d guess less than a quarter bottle; so the ratio was about 2/3 clear and 1/3 creme polish, though I’m not exactly sure.  I left space at the top of the bottle, so I could shake it up and mix it easily.

When I swatched it on my nail wheel, it was a bit streaky:

So, I added some nail polish thinner.  The thinner worked perfectly – leaving me with a thin, smooth, and glossy jelly polish!

Here it is on my nails – this is three coats:

You can see that it looks more orange here than in the swatch wheel photo; like I noted above, it seems to vary from more orange to more strawberry/ reddish based on the light.

Overall, I’m so thrilled with it! I love jelly finish polishes, and this is a super-cheap way to turn my cremes into jellies (and keep the cremes too, since it only uses about a quarter of the creme).

Have you tried frankening? Any notable successes or failures?