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Nail Art How To: Turtle Shell Gradient Nails

Nail Art How To: Turtle Shell Gradient Nails


By James

It’s not too late in the summer to take a dip into the ocean. Novi of the blog Colors Frenzy shared images of this turtle shell gradient mani with her followers, but we were left wanting more! Just for Nail It! readers, Novi shared this step-by-step pictorial so we could see up close and personal how she created the beautiful set.


What you will need:

+ 6 nail polishes. White, 4 different colors of your choice for the gradient, 1 opaque color for stamping. (What she used: White: OPI My Boyfriend Scales Walls, Blue: OPI What’s With The Cattitude, Pink: OPI Lucky Lucky Lavender, Yellow: Nicole by OPI Hit The Lights, Purple: Color Club Pucci-licious).
+ Top coat
+ Out the Door Northern Lights Holographic Top Coat (optional).
+ Stamping plate Bundle Monster BM-313, stamper, and scraper (or you can use old gift card).
+ Make up sponge.
+ Scotch tape/masking tape.
+ Clean up brush (or Q-tips).
+Acetone/nail polish remover (not pictured).

pictorial (1)

1. On a clean nail, after applying base coat of your choice, paint your nail with white polish and let it completely dry. Meanwhile, put scotch tape around your cuticle to reduce the amount of clean up needed.

2. Paint all the 4 shades you’ve chosen on the sponge, as shown on the pic.
Tip: Wet your finger and dab on the sponge before painting the polishes on the sponge. A damp sponge will prevent the polish from drying too fast and helps the colors blend better.

3. Dab the painted sponge on to the nail. I like to do it in a rolling motion from side to side.

4. Repeat step 3 several times until you get the opacity that you like. You might need to add more polish on the sponge (step 2).

5. Lift off the tape.

6. Using a clean-up brush (or Q-tips) and acetone, clean around the cuticles. Best to do it when the polish is still wet. Then apply top coat, let it dry.


7. Paint the polish on to the stamp plate, make sure to cover the entire design.

8. Scrape the excess polish from the design.

9. In a rolling motion, press the stamper on the plate to transfer the design.

10. Also in a rolling motion, from side to side, transfer the design to the nails. It’s easier to do when you put your hand flat on a surface, and just use light pressure when you’re transferring the design.

11. Clean the design that got transferred around your cuticle and apply top coat.
Tip: make sure to have enough polish on your top coat brush so when you are applying it the brush doesn’t touch your nail. This will prevent smudges/smearing.

12. You can stop at step 11. Or if you want, apply Out The Door Northern Lights topcoat for subtle sparks.

final 2 copy

Images: Novi;