Okay friends! I didn't realize all my fellow polish nerds (1000s of you!! Thanks for the love, friends!!) would go so nutso for this set of OPI Mini lights that I whipped up, so I'm posting this quick bunch of photos (shot in artificial light -- now you'll see why I only shoot in the daytime) to show you what I used and kinda how I did it. * Please be smart with your lights. I haven't tested how hot they get and I only leave mine on for about an hour at a time. Beautygeeks (or any part thereof) takes zero responsibility if you end up setting your house on fire with your homemade lights. You have been warned. Proceed at your own risk.
how to make opi mini lights: the brief
Normally I'd shoot a whole big post about this OPI Mini lights project -- yep, made with OPI Mini polish bottles -- but I'm faaaar too lazy for that. So please refer to the unattractive bunch of photos below. If you need further assistance, please ask in the comment section. You know I'll answer 'cause I always do!
- These are the really expensive $3 lights I bought. They come with a battery pack that takes three AA batteries.
- That's what the individual bulbs look like. Nice and skinny to fit into the lid.
- The lid with the hole drilled in it and the bulb stuffed through the top. Yes, that's about the size of hole you need to drill for an OPI Mini. And you're gonna wanna drill it from the inside. Place drill into cap and drill out.
- That's a piece of string tied at the base of the bulb so the bulb doesn't pop out of the hole in the cap. I didn't want to use glue in case it gets too hot in the bottle and it explodes. I don't really know if that would happen or not, but I figured better to let air get out and be safe, right?
- That's the bulb pulled back into the cap.
- And then screw the bottle on. That's it. You're done!
how to make opi mini lights: the details
- Empty a bunch of minis into a throw-away container. You might need good ventilation – it’s mega-fumes, yo.
- Using a pair of pliers, rip brush out of cap by the stem.
- Using an eyedropper tool, get some acetone into your minis and clean ’em out. Then dump that used acetone into your throw-away container too (make sure it’s sturdy so your acetone doesn’t eat through it).
- Repeat the acetone-clean if your bottles are still cloudy. Let bottle interiors dry thoroughly.
- Get a drill and drill from the inside of the cap out through the top – it goes thru there like butter. Don’t hold the cap in your hand, please – use a pair of pliers or vice grips or sumthin’. You need barely any pressure on the drill at all.
- Get a set of mini lights from your local cheapie store. The empty bottles are still quite heavy so shorter strings of maybe 20 or less would probably be best. I bought a 20 of LED skinny lights. Clear $3-lights from my local dollar store, they have a battery pack attached and take three AA batteries.
- Coat the inside of your bottles with whatever glittery thing you want and stick ’em upside down on toothpicks for them to drain and dry. I used OPI Snowflakes in the Air – it has holo rainbow glitter in it and the light bounces off it and makes rainbows. I took the brush out of my big bottle and stuck it into the mini wiping off both sides on the mini neck to get the glitter into the mini and did that 2 or 3 times to get enough polish into the mini to coat it. You’ll have to roll them around slowly to get an even coat inside. Don’t use too much polish to coat the inside – better to use less and add as needed than dump a bunch in and have to dump it out and waste it, right? A couple or 3 big drops off a brush is enough.
- Let your bottles dry upside down for a bit. When they’ve dried for maybe 1/2 an hour and all the excess goop has dripped out, use a toothpick to scrape the tacky polish from the inside neck of the bottles so your lights can slip in there. I used a toothpick and I also used an acetone q-tip if the stuff was too dry. Let your bottles dry completely.
- Stick the lights thru the top hole in the cap and tie a piece of string at the base of the light so it doesn’t pop out of the hole when you pull the light back into the cap. The light and string stopper will be totally inside the cap and not in the bottle.
- Screw the bottle onto the cap.
- Turn your new OPI Mini lights on and feel really proud that you made that!!
I think I covered everything… G’luck!!!
Photos ©KarenFalcon (it really hurts her feelings when people steal her photographs -- thank you to the nice people who ask permission to use one or two and link back to Beautygeeks).