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Ombre Nails Tutorial

finished look of Ombre nails tutorial

I love doing nail art, especially during those lazy summer days! However, some styles can be difficult and some require special tools. I like to do nails that are easy to do but have a bold impact! My favorite way to do my nails is with an ombre nails manicure. It’s really easy to do, but it’s definitely an eye-catching style!

Ombre Nails Step 1

picture of materials needed to ombre nails tutorail

To do ombre nails at home, you only need materials that you probably already have lying around your house! You need a top coat, your nail polish, a small bowl filled with water, angled makeup sponges, Q-tips, and nail polish remover.

polish used for ombre nails tutorial

The nail polish that I’m using in this tutorial is, from left to right, Essie Very Cranberry, Petites Pretty in Pink, Essie Mod Squad, and Sally Hansen Diamond Strength Mille Fleurs. I picked colors that faded from dark to light in the same color palette. It is important that the colors blend together seamlessly to create the ombre nails effect.

Let your makeup sponge soak in the water for a little while, making sure that it is completely submerged. Then, remove it and squeeze it a few times so that it is just slightly damp. This step is important as it allows the colors to blend better and makes the nail polish look less opaque.

Ombre Nails Step 2

For Step 2 of the Ombre Nails Tutorial, it helps if you unscrew your nail polish for easy access, as seen above. The polish needs to applied to the nail before it dries on the sponge, so every second counts!

As you can see in the picture above, I applied one stroke of each color on the sponge. Try to paint the colors close together so a little bit of each color is overlapping. Make sure to get a good amount of polish onto the sponge, especially the darker color. If you need to, you can paint over the color twice before applying it to the nail.

Ombre Nails Step 3

After you have painted your nail polish onto the sponge, bounce the sponge lightly on top of a scrap piece of paper or magazine. This allows the colors to blend together to create the ombre nails effect.

Picture of Ombre Nails before cleaned up

Next, bounce the sponge up and down on your nails until you get the desired color. Make sure the get the sides of the nail, too! I actually went back and did another sponged coat onto my nails to make them a little bit darker. Don’t worry about getting the nail polish on your skin; you can clean that up later. Repaint the sponge for each nail to make sure that you get a good distribution of color. The sponge should stay damp all the way throughout the process, but if it starts to get dry, just dip it in the water again.

Ombre Nails Step 4

As you can see in the previous picture, there is going to be a good amount of nail polish on your skin. After you have sponged all of your nails, dip a Q-tip into nail polish remover and just clean up around your nails. Try to do this as soon as possible because it is harder to do after the polish has dried. Alternatively, you can place Scotch tape around your nail bed before starting to prevent the mess.

finished look of Ombre nails tutorial

Lastly, apply a clear top coat to set the ombre nails! Because the nail polish is sponged on, it is thinner than your average manicure. Because of this, it is more fragile and is more likely to chip. However, if you reapply your top coat every day, these ombre nails should last several days!

Although in this tutorial I did a pink ombre nail, the ombre nails look looks great in all colors! Also try doing this look with two different colors for a spin on the ombre nails effect. For example, I did this the other day with red and orange nail polish and it made my nails look like a sunset! Let me know what you think of these ombre nails in the comments below!

Have a beautiful day! Love, Jessica

Jessica May

Jessica May

Jessica May is a college student and blogger who is always looking for new ways to stand out in the crowd. She started experimenting with cosmetics at a young age and has continued to be passionate about the subject throughout the years.

Jessica May

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3 Comments

  1. Sue Lin
    Sue Lin
    August 31, 2012, 5:50 pm

    This is shouting hot “geisha” to me. I really got to try this out. Thanks for sharing your ombre tips Jessica!

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  2. Anastasia
    February 25, 2013, 11:47 pm

    I just used this tutorial after I saw the Covergirl Outlast polish ad featurning Pink with ombre nails. It looks AWESOME, almost exactly like Pink’s nails! Thank you so much!

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  3. Sue Lin
    Sue Lin
    March 11, 2013, 8:38 am

    Glad you tried this out Anastasia! I hope you will find our other tutorials useful as well.

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