Sunday, 28 March 2010

How To: Create Leopard Print Nails


I've had loads of people asking me how I do my leopard print manis, and even more people saying that they'd love to try it but it looks too hard. I am here to show you just how ridiculously easy it is! I'm going to give you a step-by-step photo tutorial on how to do this. I'll also tell you what products I used and where to get them from. I really hope this is useful for you guys!!

Products you will need:
* A base colour
* A second colour that compliments the base colour - it needs to be slightly darker than the base colour - or contrasting, whatever floats your boat really!
* Black nail polish
* A dotting tool - I bought a set of 12 nail art brushes on eBay that contained the particular dotting tool that I use for this. I have no idea what the brushes are for, and have quite honestly found them to be useless! I have since bought a set of dotting tools from this eBay seller - 5 double ended tools for approximately £3 and free P&P. Bargain! However if you don't have any, you can use a cocktail stick :)
* A top coat
* A piece of shiny card like those annoying adverts that fall out of magazines/piece of unwanted plastic (I've used the lid of my cotton bud box before now) - this is to drop your black polish on to. Don't use paper as you don't want it to sink into it and dry.

For the purposes of this tutorial, I am going to show you my normal, 'go-to' leopard print design with standard leopard print colours. So my base is GOSH Nail Lacquer in Cappucino, my second complimentary colour is Avon's Speed Dry Nail Polish in Topaz, and my black nail polish is Nails Inc's London Nights, and my top coat is Rimmel's Lycra Pro in Clearly Clear.

On to the fun bit!


1. Apply your base colour and wait for it to dry. If you're using quite a sheer colour like me, you may need 2 or 3 coats.

Two coats of Cappucino

2. Using the brush from the bottle of your complimentary colour, make random dots and squiggles on your nails. Wait for them to dry. Remember, they do not have to be perfect, this is all part of the charm :) Before you start, make sure you do not have excess polish on your brush otherwise this can go wrong and will also take ages to dry.

3. Take the brush from your black polish and put a couple of drops of the polish onto your shiny card or plastic. Don't take too long between this step and the next :)

This is the shiny bit of card I'm currently using

Get lots of polish on the brush and let it drop on to the card

4. Using your dotting tool, dip it into the black polish then draw an outline around the dots and squiggles of your complimentary coloured nail polish.

My dotting tool

They do not have to join up in circles and they do not have to be perfect! See?

5. Repeat the above step as many times as is necessary to complete all of your nails :) Wait for them to dry.

6. Add a top coat and ta da! You have your very own leopard print mani!

7. Take obligatory photos and send me some links :D I can't wait to see what you guys come up with!!

Thanks for reading, and I hope you have fun with this :)
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  1. I saved the pic to my computer so I can practise lol, i will deffo order the dotting tools thanks so much for this tutorial xx

  2. Hehe yay :D I really hope it was helpful! xox

  3. Yaaay :D great tutorial xo

  4. Are they our own nails? If not which brand of fake nails do you use? Many thanks, your new follower, Jade!

  5. Hi Jade, yes they are my own nails :D Thanks for following xox

  6. Thanks for the link! I'm so excited to try this! I imagine though its hard to do your dominant hand!

  7. You're welcome! It's much easier than it sounds, promise!! xx

  8. For the dotting you can also use "la art deco" they have the color black and other fun colors as well as different colored glitters, the tips are very small and thin just like your dotting tool. I get mine at my local dollar store for $1, but you can get them else where too : )

    1. I recently managed to get a few of the LA Art Deco stripers from Beauty Base in the UK - they're quite hard to get hold of over here. I picked up black, white, pink and silver :) Thank you very much for your comment xx