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Nail Art Tutorial: Polka-dot Nail Tips!

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Well, it’s about dang time I give you guys a nail art tutorial! I’ve shared enough photos of the beautiful nail art my friend Nails by Tammi does on this blog and all my social networks, but I decided this time to show you how the magic happens. Hopefully you’ll see a lot more collaboration between me and Tammi soon.

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This is how you can get a beautiful French or European manicure with polka dot tips. You can use whatever color combinations you want. I chose red and white because, well, red is my favorite color and I’ve felt a little Dotty lately.

So you’ll need:

  • French manicure base coat (like from the Sally Hansen Hard As Nails French Manicure Kit)
  • Two shades of polish (your choice)
  • A dotting tool (available at your local beauty supply store) or the back of a small paintbrush
  • A hardened piece of plastic that would otherwise be thrown away
  • Clear nail top coat

Step 1: Put one coat of your light-pink French base coat on your nails. Add another coat if you want more pink, but I preferred a more natural look for the nail bed.

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Step 2: After your base coat has dried, paint your tips with two coats of your regular color. If you’re an expert at giving yourself a French manicure, this is really easy and can be done in just one swipe. However, there are tools you can use to help you just paint the tips.  Sally Hansen has a kit I’ve tried and it’s worked; keep on the lookout for the one with the “self-adhesive nail guides.” Those guides are great teaching tools, too! Like riding a bicycle.

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Step 3: Remember that hardened piece of plastic? Pour a tiny bit of the dot color you want onto it. This piece of plastic that Tammi used was purchased from the local craft store as a soap-making mold, I believe, but works just as well for when she’s doing nail art. Take out your dotting tool and dip it in the polish.

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Step 4: Time to get dotty! Make sure your main color is dried, get out your dotting tool and just start dotting away. You’ll have to occasionally dip your dotting tool back into the polish, so be sure to keep that plastic thingamajig handy.

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Step 5: Let the dots dry (this is very important – I smudged a dot on my left hand during this process), and then cover with your top coat. That top coat evens everything out and also helps protect your color from chipping.

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Step 6: Let your nails dry, and then get someone to take a photo of all your nails, like this:



Then show ’em off to all your friends on Facebook and Instagram and tell ’em how you learned how to do this!

A few notes:

  • There is an easier way to get the dots; for instance, Sally Hansen offers a variety of nail art pens. You can buy a whole bunch for a multi-color polka-dot extravaganza! Or, if you’re like me and have a bunch of polish already available, you can buy the dotting tool and use your colors.
  • If you’d rather have a manicurist work with your nails and you live in the Rogers-Bentonville area of northwest Arkansas, I highly recommend Nails by Tammi at Bella Mia in Rogers. She is well worth what I pay her to have nails that are worth all the photos I take of myself holding stuff for work.

So, whatcha think?


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