Original photo and art at http://fashionfuz.com/nails/

Hi girls, I’m so happy to open our lesson by introducing a technique that I adore: Gradients!

In this post, I’ll be talking about what gradient nails are and how you can learn the perfect technique to easily do great gradients.

Have you ever stumbled upon the amazing The Nailasaurus‘s Gradient Nails Designs?

I mean,

Green Gradient Nail Art
Original photo and art http://www.thenailasaurus.com

How can you not

Gradient Mermaid Nail Art // The Nailasaurus
Original photo and art http://www.thenailasaurus.com

Love and adore

Original photo and art http://www.thenailasaurus.com

These stunning nails?

Pink and Purple Gradient Nail Art with a Sprinkling of Fairy Dust
Original photo and art http://www.thenailasaurus.com

Her incredible work proves the point that you don’t need to have long nails to be amazing and pull off stunning manicures. But how can we reach her levels?

First of all, a little bit of terminology is necessary.

Gradient, in Nail Art Language, is when you pick two or more colors of nail polish and, by means of a sponge, a cotton swab, a brush or anything might work for you, overlap the two colors on your nails so that they will graciously blend into each other.

Surprisingly, Gradients are incredibly easy: it takes a little effort and the effect is always great.

For doing gradients, you’ll need:

-white polish base, so that the other colors will look brighter and more opaque

-base and top coat (the top coat is very important to accentuate the blending effect and protect your gradient. You can use a matte or shiny top coat or even a glittery one)

-two or more colors of your choice. Choose colors that will look nice together and that are not too similar in shade

-liquid latex/glue barrier (optional)

-acetone and nail art brush/cotton swab to clean up the mess

-a make-up sponge (or anything you think may work to blend the colors)

The process is really easy. If you are going to use a latex barrier like I do (because I’m too lazy to clean up everything), then apply it after you’ve put the white polish base and let it dry completely before you start sponging.

Step 1) Apply the base coat and the white polish


Step 2) Grab the sponge and apply a stripe of each one of the polishes that you have chosen for the gradient in the order you want them to appear on your nails


Some people use a slightly different method, as they put the polish on a flat surface, blend it a bit with a toothpick and then dab the sponge down on it like this:

Ombre Nails Nail Art Tutorial
Original photo and art http://www.thenailasaurus.com

Either method works. Use the one you’re most comfortable with.

Step 3) Dab the sponge down on your nails and move it slightly up and down as you keep dabbing (gently, always gently). Repeat this step as many times as you want until the gradient is opaque enough for your taste. This is a photo from a different mani to show you how it should turn out (also look at how messy it is and how liquid latex will save my day once again)


If you applied the latex, peel it off, apply a generous coat of shiny or matte top coat and enjoy your gradient nails. If not, you may need to clean up your nails and fingers a little bit with acetone, but then your nails will look great just the same.



It will take a little practice to get the hang of it. Above you can see my latest Gradient Designs, while below are some of my earlier attempts (and my cuticles look horrible). As you can see they’re far from perfect:

DSCF0460DSCF1943 DSCF0874DSCF0883

So, as for everything, you need to practice, practice, practice! And have fun, of course!

I’ll leave you with The Nailasaurus‘ official and super helpful Gradients tutorial, see you all at Lesson #2- Striping Tape!