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Watercolour Nail Art Tutorial

Posted by Alexandra C. | Wednesday May 23, 201227 comments

We first caught onto the watercolour manicure after seeing it at Toronto's Spring Fashion Week 2012 at the Lucian Matis show. For some bizarre reason though, we never thought to try them out. We thought it would be too difficult to achieve the same runway look. But then we thought, 'nah! We're an adventurous bunch here at ChickAdvisor'. So we sat down and played around with this fun nail art look! 

It turned out to be really simple and it didn't require a lot of skill (phew!). The best part is, it doesn't need to be super polished and sleek so mistakes are welcome! We decided to go with a pastel colour palette for this look, on a white background to keep with the trendy candy coloured pastels for summer

Here's what you'll need: 

Acetone (you find this at drugstores or mass merchandisers like WalMart, you should use 100% pure acetone but you can use a polish remover with acetone as well) 
White nail polish (for background)
3 or more polishes of your choice  
Top and bottom coat 
Paint tray 

Step 1 + 2: Prep

1. After applying your bottom coat, paint your white polish background. 
2. In your painting tray, pour a small amount of acetone. You'll be mixing this with polish so keep the acetone separate or be sure that it won't blend in with the polish. 

Step 3: Mix Polish 

 3. In a separate part of your tray or in another mixing bowl all together, place a few drops of your first polish of choice. Next, with your paintbrush, mix in a bit of the acetone with the polish. The polish should become clearer and if you are using pure acetone, it should be able to mix thoroughly and be consistent. 

Step 4 + 5: Paint

4. After mixing, lightly brush on using a patting motion (more than a painting or dragging motion). You can play around with whatever pattern you like. You went for an abstract, splotch effect. 
5. Your first polish coat should dry fairly quickly. Start on your next colour polish, using the same, blotting action. 

Step 6: Extra Polish

6. Repeat the process, with a few different colours of your choice. We found that after a few layers, the polishes would start to rub off. So, be sure to use a blotting action, make sure each layer is dry and to clean to brush between colour applications. 

Final Look

Clean up the cuticle area with a bit of polish remover on a Q-Tip. Apply a top coat and voila- your watercolour mani is complete! 

Have you tried out a watercolour manicure yet? What's your latest nail art obsession?
More by Alexandra C.
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on June 26, 2012  katieg  10,672 said:

Something new to try for summer Cute!!!

on June 26, 2012  smiley_gen  9,832 said:

Very cute for Spring/Easter if you have the time!

on June 03, 2012  bubbles77  28,057 said:

Not a big fan of dealing with white nail polish, this looks to messy for me. I do like the look of the finished product, but would not have patience to get to the end on my own that's for sure. Not bad, pretty , but not for me.

on May 31, 2012  janicevreid  415 said:

looks good

on May 30, 2012  Wweckworth  605 said:

What a great idea!!

on May 30, 2012  babigurl86  1,687 said:

Cute idea!

on May 29, 2012  Karilu  275 said:

This is the first time i see this style. Very original, try maybe drawing some watercolour flowers!!

on May 28, 2012  fredamans  12,209 said:

Very cool idea for Easter!

on May 26, 2012  Charmheart16  3,985 said:

Cute. And it looks like it would be fun to do. :)

on May 25, 2012  GoneBatty  3,196 said:

This is super cute, but I just don't have the time for something like this

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