Vintage Red Half-Moons

Hi! Today I have for you a mani that turned out really well. I’ve wanted to do a successful half-moon mani for a while now, and I think I’ve finally nailed it. (Ha ha.) This would be a fun design to do in many different color combos, but I decided to go classic and sophisticated using Revlon Forbidden (a deep red polish) and OPI You Callin’ Me a Lyre? (a sheer pink). 

 Red half-moon mani   

Here is the finished product, in natural lighting. I used OPI’s Ridge-Filler and two coats of OPI You Callin’ Me a Lyre? for the pink moons. I waited for that to dry completely before applying the hole reinforcers. It’s important to let the base color dry completely, not just to the touch, because then when you apply and remove the hole reinforcers they will rip off the base polish. Not that that happened to me or anything. Anyway, after waiting a couple of hours for the OPI to dry, I stuck on the hole reinforcers and carefully applied two coats of Revlon Forbidden. After waiting a few more minutes for the whole manicure to set, I finished with a thick coat of Essie Good To Go.

Revlon & OPI half-moon polishes

Here are the basic supplies I used. Revlon Forbidden is the gorgeous red jelly on the left; OPI You Callin’ Me a Lyre? is the sheer pink on the right that I used for my base. The hole reinforcers you can find at any office supply store. 

Red Half-Moon Mani


Another picture in shaded natural lighting. The half-moon manicure started around the 1930s/1940s, when women didn’t (or couldn’t) get their nails done as often as women do today. The half-moon part was left bare to disguise growth at the cuticle, thus making your manicure look fresher for longer. This look has since been revived by people like Dita Von Teese, who made this manicure synonymous with old Hollywood glamour and classic styles.

Red half-moon mani


One last picture in shaded natural lighting. This is closest to how Revlon Forbidden looks in real life–not a candy apple red, but rather a deeper red. I considered leaving the moon part bare for a true ‘vintage’ look, but I’m glad I went with the sheer pink. It pops more against the red than just a bare nail. 

I am really glad that this turned out! I know it doesn’t look perfect in these macro shots, but in real life and at a normal distance this manicure looks utterly glamorous. I feel so classy and ladylike with this on my nails–I’ll be sad to remove it. I’m looking forward to attempting the half-moon look with other color combos in the future!



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