For creating nail art designs, you do not require manicured hands, however, make sure that your nails are clean, healthy and evenly shaped. Today, the stores are flooded with all sorts of nail polishes and acrylic paints suited for nail art designs. Acrylic paints not only help you create remarkable designs, but are also cheaper than nail polish. You could use toothpicks to create tiny dots and fine designs.
Besides, you will also need some fine tip brushes to paint the designs. Glitter is also widely used to make nail art look even more attractive and decorative. However, don't forget to keep a bottle of pure acetone to wipe off the polish in case of any errors. You will also require an acrylic top coat, which is to be applied once the nail art design is complete. This top coat will keep your nails shiny and glossy for several days.
Halloween is the time of skulls, bones, Jack-O-Lanterns, fire, ghosts, vampires, skeletons and scores of other spooky characters. So why not have them as nail art designs? For creating Halloween nail art designs, you should take black varnish and apply it onto your nails as the base color. Apply a double coat for a better look. On this black base, you can try out various designs. By using white acrylic paint, you can paint skulls, bones, skeletons, ghost faces, etc. on the nail. In fact on each fingernail, you can have different Halloween characters. For the Jack-O-Lantern, you will require orange, green and a bit of white acrylic paint.
Mostly red and white colored acrylic paints are used as the base coats in these nail art designs. You could apply white color for the base and then using a fine paint brush or toothpick, you could paint a Christmas tree, holly leaves, Christmas stockings, candy canes, etc. onto the nail. Touches of glitter would add to the festive feel. Santa Claus' face can also be painted on the nails. For this, apply blue acrylic paint as the basal coat; applying it twice for better finish. Once it dries, use white acrylic paint to draw the beard and the face with skin color paint. Paint the hat with red and use black to do the eyes and even for the outline of the entire face. Then cover with a top coat. Mistletoe is also quite popular, and can be either made on the entirely painted nail or a nail painted white only at the tip (with transparent varnish) below. Tiny bells and stars can also be painted, with glitter adorning them.
You need a shiny metallic shade of nail polish which would serve as the base coat. Take white acrylic paint and by using a thin brush paint a dot on the nail. From this dot, paint 8 lines or spikes, extending from the dot in a circular fashion. Where the spikes end, draw two more spikes, something like one spike branching into another. So you will have a snowflake. You can also paint half snowflakes on the edges of the nails, and to give it a more attractive look, you could also paint one of the snowflakes in blue. In case you do not have metallic nail polish, you could even use blue acrylic paint for the basal coat. However, you will have to use white paint for the snowflakes.
For marine life designs, you would require blue acrylic paint and a bit of white acrylic paint for the base coat. Apply transparent varnish onto the blue sea-like coat and then paint tiny fish on the nails. Using green paint, you could draw thin weeds through which the fish are swimming around. A slight touch of a darker shade of green along with the green on the weeds, would give it a natural look. A few pebbles can be painted at the base with brown and white paint. Apart from the fish design, you could even consider painting starfish and tiny seahorses on the nails. Whales and dolphins are other good options.
Tiger, zebra and dalmatian designs are quite popular among the animal nail art designs. For the tiger skin nail design, apply a yellow acrylic basal coat. Apply it twice for a thicker and better finish. Then apply smudges of orange color on the nail at different areas. After it dries, paint thick zigzag lines using black acrylic paint. The zigzag pattern should be thick at the base and tapering towards the other end. And the patterns must be in alternating fashion. Thick means, if one base is thick, the stripe next to it should be tapering and so on. For a zebra design, you could do the same by applying white acrylic paint as the basal coat and then paint stripes of black. The stripes of zebra are not like the tiger, so paint thinner ones. Have some stripes in one direction and some in the other to make it look like zebra stripes. You could even add some glitter to make it look more attractive. To create a dalmatian design, just paint smudges of black paint on a white base.
Ladybugs are 'easy to do' nail art designs. For the ladybugs design, apply white nail polish on the nail. Once it dries, paint small circular shapes (bulging at one end) on the nail, each of a different size and well-spaced from each other. If you wish, you could stick to one large ladybugs a nail as well. Once the red paint dries, paint a black line from one end to the other, with the tip of your thin paint brush. Further, paint very tiny black dots on either side of the line. Now draw a black head on top of the red circle (at the bulging end) and then paint two antennas. You can also paint colorful butterflies, dragonflies and grasshoppers on your nails if you have a hand at painting.
You can create human footprints as well as animal pug mark designs on your nails. For pug marks, apply pearl-white nail polish as the basal coat. Once it dries, use different colors of acrylic paints to paint the pug marks. Pug marks are very simple, just paint one circle and three small circles on top of it. The smaller circles' size should also be in decreasing order. You could even paint two or three different colors of pug marks on the same nail. The smaller the pug marks, the better they look. For the human footprint design, you could use any dark or bright shade of nail polish. If you take red as the base, you could use white to make the footprints.
Netting design is one of the simple and elegant nail art designs and involves painting a netting design at the tip of the nails. For this design, apply silver varnish as the basal coat. Once it dries, draw thin vertical lines with black acrylic paint, with the help of a thin brush. Then draw horizontal lines crossing the vertical ones. Since we don't want checks, make sure the lines are crossed in a slightly uneven fashion and let the ends extend at the edges of the design. Outline the black net design with silver glitter varnish and after it dries, apply the usual top coat.
Hawaii reminds us of the glorious beaches and Hula dancers dressed in colorful flowers. This theme can also be applied to nail art designs. However, these designs are not very simple. These are suited for those who have a good hand at painting. If you have a skillful hand, you could paint beaches, waves, surfers and Hula dancers on the nails. For those of you who cannot manage to paint these complicated pictures, you could still bring Hawaii on your nails by painting garlands on your fingernails. You could even paint figures of people in black and then adorn them with colorful flower tiaras and garlands.
Warli designs are very simple to do and also require only two shades of acrylic paint to bring about a wonderful nail art design. You could use either black, red, brown or green for the basal coat. Apply a second coat to give it a better finish. For the designing bit, white acrylic color is used. Using a thin paint brush, paint tiny Warli figures onto your nail. Using your creativity, you can have Warli figures doing different things like playing musical instruments, dancing, etc.
Puzzle designs can be of two types, having one base color and one contrasting color for outlining the puzzle pieces, or else having different colors for different puzzle pieces. The first type is easier to do and requires just one basal coat to be applied to the entire nail. Once the basal coat has dried, you can draw lines with a contrasting color of acrylic paint to form a puzzle design. For the second type, you will have to first draw the puzzle shapes and once they have dried, you will have to fill each puzzle piece with a different color. Once all the puzzle pieces dry, you will have to again paint the outlines and for a better finish, apply silver glitter on the outline.
Flowers are the simplest and the most popular of all nail art designs. But don't shy away from this design just because it is very common. The flower concept can never fade out because of its elegance and variety. The types of designs you can make are just endless. You could either paint lots of tiny flowers or paint leaves and branches adorned with few flowers. You can apply various shades of basal coats and try out as many variations of flower designs as you wish.
Hearts and cupids reign on Valentine's day celebration, so there's no doubt they will be seen in Valentine nail art designs. Apply white varnish on the nail and let it dry. Once dried, paint tiny red hearts on the nails using red paint. Add glitter if you wish to. This is the simplest Valentine design. You could also paint two hearts in an overlapping fashion with an arrow piercing the hearts or else paint just the outlines of hearts in pink and red all over the nail, with some overlapping the others. You could also use red acrylic paint for the basal coat and then paint cupid in white. Bright red roses can also be painted on a white or pink basal coat.
Lovely delicate nail designs would make your nails look perfect for the wedding day. For this, you need pink varnish for the basal coat. Then use white acrylic paint and then paint tiny white flowers at the base of the nail. Paint a strand of tiny white dots to make it look more attractive. For French nails, you can have designs made at the conjunction points. You could have a streamer of dots starting from one end of the conjunction point to the other, in increasing order of size. At the outer end, you could draw one pretty flower in white and paint the petals with baby pink.
There are numerous designs that you can try out. Unleash your creativity and try out whatever you feel like. However, irrespective of the design you create, always remember to reapply the top coat after every two or three days. Also apply cuticle oil every day (for moisturizing the nails) and wear gloves while handling mud. Don't just stop after designing your nails; make sure you provide appropriate nail care too.