Credit: Morgan Maloney for

One common struggle we have when painting our own nails? Getting lacquer all over our cuticles, and eventually attempting to scrape its dried remains off our skin. Nothing says "this manicure was my own handiwork" like swatches of excess paint surrounding your nail bed, but the innovative Liquid Palisade product just might help the process. Dubbed "painter's tape" for nail art, the purple liquid transforms into a peel-off film, which you place around your cuticles as you lacquer up, allowing any unexpected smudges to be lifted while leaving your mani untouched. Associate Photo Editor Sarah Balch took the product on a road-test to see if it really guarded the skin around her nails from excess polish, and if it worked as a nail art guide. Read on to see what she thought!

Liquid Palisade
Credit: Sarah Balch for

As the self-proclaimed nail art fanatic around the office, I was intrigued by this unique new product ($22;, which claimed to create a barrier between the skin around your nails and any excess polish that spills over. Mastering the at-home manicure is always a challenge, and anything that can make the process of achieving salon-worthy nail art on my own is something I need in my life. At first I was skeptical, a fast-drying liquid you have to peel off? It almost sounds like more work than its worth. I prepped my nails as usual, and before I applied the color I painted a layer of the purple Liquid Palisade around the edges of my cuticles. Within seconds, it appeared to dry and the color changed to a darker purple. Once I saw that change, I continued painting my nails as I normally would. The next step took a bit of getting used to... In order to remove the product and reveal polish-free cuticles, you need to use tweezers to peel it off. After one or two nails I got the hang of it and revealed my near-perfect manicure. Success!

Now that I was an expert using the painter's tape for nails, I decided to try using it to give myself a reverse french manicure. After the base layer of polish was dry I painted the product in a semi-circle at the base of my cuticles. When the Liquid Palisade was dry and had dried, I brushed on the second color and then used tweezers again to pull off the product. It worked like magic! It has become my new secret weapon to have everyone in the office believing I am a nail art pro. I have a little tip I have learned along the way---when painting on the Liquid Palisade, make sure to create a thick enough layer, or for nail art, a large enough tab of product to make the process of removing it much more seamless.