Whether it's on the red carpet or Instagram, we all love nails. From a glossy red manicure to intricate nail art, there are many ways for us to polish our fingertips, and we never get tired of trying out a new bottle. This holiday there are plenty of gorgeous polish sets, small and large, for the lacquer lover on your list. Here's what we're adding to our wish lists!
Imagine if Coachella met Fashion Week but in a gallery setting, and you've got Art Basel, the three-day art festival that just wrapped up in Miami over the weekend. Sartorial stars like Gabrielle Union, Eva Longoria, and Jessica Hart mingled with musicians and artists to soak up the sun and check out the art. And in addition to the art that was shown on a grand scale, we zoomed in on the art that happened on a smaller scale. So micro, in fact, that it was spotted on people's nails. Whenever beauty app designer and nail queen of Instagram Hannah Bronfman shows up to a party, you know the manicures are going to be great. But other ladies were upping their nail A-game, too. Scroll on for our favorite looks.
One showgoer showed off her handiwork with some NCLA It Don't Matter Nail Wraps ($16).
Going along with the art theme of the week, this fashion girl painted Banksy and Shepard Fairey prints all over her fingertips.
This woman opted for some sketched-on eyes to decorate her mini canvases.
A gilded manicure and turquoise eyebrows made for a surprisingly awesome pairing.
What better way to celebrate the holidays than with some festive nail art? Whether you're penguin-obsessed, all about glitter, or have an affinity for snowflakes (as seen in our simple snowflake nail art, above), we have a nail art tutorial to match. Just scroll down, find your favorite look, and click through to find the instructions on how to do it yourself . . . Simple as that!
See more nail art ideas when you keep reading!
You don't have to put a ring on it to give your hands a little extra sparkle this holiday season. You can amp up your basic manicure with a rhinestone nail charm on your nails, and the gift-giving season is the perfect time to try on a bow accent. To keep things simple, I went with a basic pink polish using Essie Status Symbol ($8). After painting each finger, add a sparkling bow charm to just one finger. I found mine at Your Beauty Store, which has a huge selection of rhinestone nail charms. It's quite a simple look, but the dazzling element makes this manicure seem much more advanced, not to mention festive.
To dress up your nail sans the 3D action, paint a bow with nail polish instead. A dot in the middle followed by two triangular-shaped "wings" on each end will give you a sweet bow-tie look in seconds. And you can get sparkly with a glitter or metallic polish too!
When the weather gets chilly, there's no better way to dress up your nails than with a Winter-friendly penguin. This design wins big points in the cuteness category, but it's also a pretty easy design to freehand yourself.
I started off with the perfect winterscape hue, Formula X For Sephora in Unmistakable ($11), on all my nails. You don't even have to wait for the base color to dry before moving onto the next step: the penguin. Use an opaque black polish like Essie's Licorice ($9) to create the body of the penguin with a U-shape. Make sure to leave a little bit of the background showing. Next, you'll want to layer on the white parts of the penguin: the eyes and belly. Use an opaque white polish like Butter London Cotton Buds ($15) to paint on a smaller U-shape to create the stomach. Then, using the dotting tool from the Butter London Backstage Basics Nail Art Tool Kit ($18), I created the two white eyes, and then again with the black dots for the pupils. Lastly, I used Essie Meet Me at Sunset ($9) to create the orange beak and feet using the striper brush from the same tool kit.
Lastly, to bring the chilly nail art together, I used the dotting tool to create varying sized spots on the rest of my nails to give it a snowy look. The best part about each step is that you don't have to wait for the polish to dry. However, you should try to give each layer a minute or two to set, so the colors don't run. Once you're finished, seal everything in with a top coat, but wait for five to 10 minutes, so the colors don't bleed.
See the step-by-step guide when you click!
Add a little Winter sparkle to your nails with a festive snowflake accent nail. While you can deck out all 10 fingertips with glitter and white snowflake designs, I decided to go for a more simple nail art look that highlights one accent nail. I used the classic Essie Mint Candy Apple ($9) on all my nails except my ring finger, which I painted with Essie Beyond Cozy ($9) as a glittering base. Once I applied two coats of both polishes, I used the Art Club Nail Art Duo Pen in White ($5) to hand-draw snowflake designs on my ring finger. I like the mint-colored polish for a Winter chill look, but you can use red or green for a more Christmas-inspired look and a cobalt blue for a more Hanukkah-inspired look, too.
Nail art is actually easy to do yourself, which is why we've rounded up our favorite DIY nail designs to inspire your next manicure. With clever tricks using tape, markers, and bobby pins, you'll be surprised at how easy it really is to paint on a freehand design. And with a long weekend ahead of us, take a break from Thanksgiving leftovers and holiday shopping for one of these easy looks.
With Thanksgiving and Hanukkah falling in the same week, we decided to give the glitter ombré manicure a festive twist. A deep navy hue is the perfect base for any Winter holiday; we used CoverGirl Nail Gloss in Sapphire Flare ($5). Creating a glitter ombré is easy when you already have a glitter top coat like Essie Set in Stones ($9). Apply the chunky silver glitter from the middle point of your nail, and then add two to three coats on the tips to create the gradient effect. To give our glittering manicure a seasonal update, we sealed in the look with a matte topcoat using Ciaté Mattnificent ($17). The velvety finish is a fun twist on the sparkling look. But even without a matte finish, the glossy version (below) is still an easy look to pull off just in time for Thanksgiving and Hanukkah.
In case you haven't been keeping up with all of the premieres, the latest installment of The Hunger Games is hitting the big screen tomorrow. And for all the nail art aficionados out there, it's high time to start painting your nails in anticipation. From mockingjays to flames and more, we're rounding up the best Catching Fire nail art we could find. Read on for instant inspiration.
See more Catching Fire nail art when you keep reading!
This Fall, there's one trend we know we can pull off: the geometric manicure. Squares, half moons, and triangles were all spotted on the runways during the Fall 2013 shows, and it had us jumping for joy. Why, you may ask? Because all you really need to pull off this trend is some masking tape and two of your favorite polish hues. Even the less dexterous of the bunch can pull off the sexy picture-frame manicure Charlotte Ronson sent down the runway (above). But that wasn't the only shape we saw . . .
See more geometric manicure inspiration when you keep reading!