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  • Writer's pictureVanity Envie

How To Add Nail Decals To Your Manicure For An Expensive Look

Updated: May 28, 2020

With the lockdown we haven't had a decent manicure and soon lockdown is going to be lifted. However, most of us know the nail salon may be the last to reopen and when it does; just expect them to be BOOKED! Also, don't be surprised if they raise prices, so that art work you get maybe an extra $2 a nail.

Today we are going to show you how to do an at home manicure with stunning nail decals. Your nails will look like a $40 manicure! First let us just put this out there, we are NOT manicurists. So good news, you can do this if we can do it. It will take some patience though. Make sure you can spare the time to dry your nails.

HEY! Maybe you will end up doing your own manicures going forward.

Here are the tools you will need:

  • Nail clipper

  • File

  • Buffer

  • Cuticle Pusher

  • Cuticle Cutter

  • Nail Polish Remover

  • Nail Polish (base coat, your favorite color, and top coat)

  • Nail Decals (we will add a link for which ones we ordered*)

  • Lotion

  • Tweezers

  • Water

  • Scissors

  • Paper Towel

If you don't have a few tings like the cuticle pusher and cutter, you can skip that step. However, maybe you should think of buying one. Your local Sally's has a whole section dedicated to nails.

First, remove any old nail polish. You need a clean base for an expensive looking manicure.

Next, trim your nails with a nail clipper or file. Here I chose to file because I like my nails long and almond shaped.

After filing and trimming your nails, it's time to buff. This will help with any nail polish still clinging on for dear life.

Time to soak your nails, push and cut cuticles. Now use your favorite lotion to moisturize. Make sure to clean your nail beds again with nail polish remover to get any oils from the lotion off.

Paint your base coat and then your favorite nail polish color. I used OPI Start to Finish as the base coat and OPI Bubble Bath* as the background color. TIP: Match the nail decals you are going to use to the nail polish color you want to use as a base. It's always best to stay neutral.

After applying the base coat and color, wait for your nails to dry. This is the hardest part! You have to wait and can't touch anything! You are defenseless for what seems like eternity. This is a good time to decide which nail decals you are going to use and where you will place them.

The nail decals I am using are ones I purchased from Amazon. Here's a link*:

Once they are dry you can now cut the nail decals out or if you are a genius you already cut the ones you wanted out before painting your nails.

Now these next few steps I messed up a bunch. Some of the instructions I've read weren't really clear. I also was doing this outside and a few blew away and I swallowed one. Yes, you read that correctly, I swallowed one. No one said I was genius.

Pick the first one you want to apply. Remove the clear film from the top, leaving the white backing.

Now take your tweezers and while holding on to the decal, soak it in the water for 20-30 seconds. Do NOT let go of the decal, it will sink to the bottom. Trust me I made this mistake.

Tap the side of the decal on a paper towel to get an excess water off.

Next step is a bit tricky, you have to gently move the image off of the backing. Slightly push the image where you have enough hanging off to grab a corner with your tweezers.

Once you grabbed the image, slowly place the back part of the image to the top of the nail. Take your time placing it. It can wrinkle. Also if you add more than one it's okay to overlap the nail decals. See below:

After applying all of your nail decals, wait 3-4 minutes and then add the top coat. I used Nail Tek No.2 Strengthener*


It's a bit time consuming but well worth it.

Here's a few videos of the final out come.

We hope you had fun with this. We love to see what you have come up with. Tag us on instagram @Vanityenvie and we will share your manicure artwork on our story.

'* We must disclose we do not get paid for any of the products we have featured. As you see we do NOT operate using ads.

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