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Saturday, December 7, 2013

Christmas Argyle Nail Art - with Freehand Argyle Nails Tutorial

Nothing to Disclose 

'Tis the Season! Time for some Christmas on mah nailz!

Christmas Argyle Nails

I may have mentioned before that I'm pretty lazy in some things...and I HATE cleanup. Well combine that with the fact that I cannot use tape for manicures to save my butt and the need for a way to do nail art like this without tape arises.

There are a lot of tutorials out there I'm sure using tape or doing argyle nails differently and if you're good with tape and such, I recommend those. But if you're like me, these are for you!

Here's what I used, along with my Christmas Argyle Socks I used for inspiration...

For these nails I chose an opaque polish for the tip color because it needs to cover other colors. Illamasqua Throb is an opaque, one-coat red. The base is a gorgeous forest green from SoFlaJo called Evergreen. And my old standbys for nail art: Milani Flash Silver, Wet n Wild Wild Shine Black Creme and French White.

I will apologize in advance for my lack of tutorial skills. It's really hard for me to work on swatch wheels and take uniform photos of each step. So please bear with me! I typically leave the tutorials to the pros but I've had quite a few requests for a tutorial on argyle nails and since I was doing Christmas ones, I figured I'd give it a shot.

The only other thing I used for these nails is a striping brush for the silver "stitches." For the rest, I just used the regular polish brush.

1) I start with my base color as the color I want next to my cuticle area because I don't have clean-up that way. If I try to go back in for that cuticle-adjacent color I end up getting it everywhere.

2) You can start on either side here and just use the polish brush for one of your side colors to make a stripe diagonally down the nail. Let it dry enough that you don't smear step three.

3) Repeat step 2 with your 3rd color diagonally down the other side. Let dry enough that you don't smear step four. Note that you don't need to be neat or get full coverage near the tip because it's being covered by your fourth color anyway.

4) With your 4th color/tip color, use the polish brush to fill in/cover the center triangle of the tip.

5) Once it's semi-dry (enough not to smear) use your striping brush and the fifth color make the "stitches." Start in the center at the cuticle and make your line from there to the upper 1/3rd part of the side color on both sides. You don't want to cross the lines at the cuticle but you do want to leave room to cross them on the sides.

6) With your striping brush and the 5th color, draw your lines from the upper 1/3 of the side color to the tip - leaving room to cross the lines at the tip. Same on the other side.

Just let it dry and slap on a top coat and you're done! The only clean-up I ever have with these, if any, is a tiny bit of the 5th color when I make the lines - all the way to the edges.

You won't have the perfectly crisp lines that you would have using tape, but I love them.

*NOTE: If you are good with striping tape, you can use the 5th color as your base, lay out the striping tape for the "stitches" and sort of "color in" the triangles with an artist brush and your other colors. Then just remove the tape. I made a total mess every time I tried that, so this is my "cheater" way!

And it's not just for Christmas - you can pick any colors!

Try it with any color combo! Let me know if you try it and post pics to my Facebook Page!

If you enjoyed this post, please take a second to "like" it! Thanks!



  1. This is such a beautiful manicure! But what I like better is the tutorial!
    I am so going to give this one a try!! Looks much much easier then the tape version.
    Thank you so much!!!

  2. great stuff - will definitely be trying this in the New Year xx

  3. Wow these are definitely going on my to do list! Thanks for sharing your tutorial with us as well :) Looking forward to seeing more of your nail art in the future!

    Merry Christmas!


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