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Episode 5 Recap and Nail Tips: Tattoo Nails

Episode 5 Recap and Nail Tips: Tattoo Nails


By semick

This week’s episode pitted nail artists Angela Beer, Chris Mans and Lakia Lewis against each other. For the Quick Dry challenge, contestants were asked to find nail art inspiration in their clients’ tattoos. What’s more, they were only allowed to use nail art pens to create the tattoo detail. This is important to note because, typically, nail art pens are challenging to work with. They have a thick tip, and controlling the amount of paint that comes out of them is difficult, therefore making it hard to create intricate designs.
Still, nail art pens can be good for a novice nail enthusiast—especially when utilizing Chris’ great tip: Paint your design with the pen and, before it dries, use a pin or a toothpick to etch details. For example, draw the shape of a leaf with a green nail art pen, then use a pin to etch out the veins to give it dimension.

Ultimately, Angela’s set of nails—featuring the astrological ram tattooed on her client’s chest—won the challenge.
Tattoos and nails aren’t all that different; they are both used as art forms to express yourself. Obviously, the main distinction is that tattoos are the ultimate in permanence, while nails’ claim to fame is that they are decidedly temporary. Still, you’ll find that they often go hand-in-hand (no pun intended!).


Tattoo Nail Art

For those who struggle with hand-painted nail art, there are temporary-type tattoos made just for nails. Just like a temporary tattoo for the skin, you apply it to the nail by moistening the backing, then pulling off the paper leaving the “tattoo” behind. This nail art comes in classic tattoo designs, the most popular being the rose, that can create easy tattoo-themed nails. Look for these at your favorite beauty supply store or online at or an Etsy shop.rad-nails-cuticle-art-guide-hp_edited-1

Cuticle Tattoos

Nail art online retailer Rad Nails has created a line of temporary tattoos that can go directly on the nail or line your cuticles for a cool accent to your already awesome nails. Try them out in black or ultra-chic gold.

Mildred-Rivera nail polish tattooTattoo: Mildred Rivera

Polish as Tattoos

Tattoos aren’t only found on nails, but nail polish is found prominently in a number of actual tattoos. Check out the Nail It! magazine gallery featuring some permanent nail-tastic designs!


See more of Nail’d It on the Oxygen blog here!


-Stephanie Lavery
Editor-in-Chief, Nail It!


Images: Chris Man’s nail up close: Oxygen; butterfly tattoo nails: Nailpro; cuticle tattoos: Rad Nails; nail polish tattoo: Mildred Rivera