Beginners guide to frankening!

I have told about my experiments with frankening on several occasions and I always get a lot of questions. There are many great resources on the internet, such as:

Dr. Frankenpolish this blog has been abandoned for a few years now, but it is still a very good beginners guide. Just take note that some things might be outdated, such as her recommendation to use zink bb balls, which we now all know are at risk of rusting over time in polish.

Polish and Pigments a bit more detailed and with lots of suppliers listed. There is SO MUCH information here, it's just to dig right in.

Something Awful thread A giant source of info on everything franken related.

Within these 3 links is everything you need to know to do whatever you want with polish. I'm just gonna do a tl;dr version here, with some of my own methods and experiments.

All you really need to start out, is bottles, base and glitter. Oh and balls! Suspension base suspends the glitter, so it doesn't all fall to the bottom. There are bases that will suspend pigments but not glitter such as TKBs Luster base.

To colour the base, you can use micas, pigments and coloured bases and tints. For home frankening I recommend just using coloured polishes and combining them with pigments, especially with the difficulty of getting the coloured bases outside of USA.

Glitter! You have to get glitter that is solvent resistant, and even then you have to test it. Solvent resistant does not mean solvent proof, and it may not withstand being in nail polish over time. Glitter reacts differently in different bases and in different combinations. Your best bet is to buy from suppliers that test their glitter in nail polish, and then still test for yourself, in the base you yourself use. Then when you create something, let it sit for at least a month and then there's a good chance that it will keep. Even if like me, you are just creating for fun and friends, it's just such a shame when what started out as a cute present turns into a gloopy discoloured mess.

Here are my own first experiments - not a pretty sight haha!

Tips and tricks:

I use a cut off straw as a handy glitter and pigment spoon and I use a plastic pastry tip as a funnel when creating straight into the bottles.


Wonder Beauty - ships single bottles of suspension base internationally. Ships from USA.

MandaMakes has everything you need. Ships from UK.

Girly Bits - has glitter, base and everything else you may need! Ships from Canada.

Nail Glitter Princess - solvent resistant glitter. Ships from USA.

TKB Trading - has everything! Does not ship base internationally.

Spectraflair4u - has spectraflair to create holographic effect and colour changing pigments.