In honor of my 18th birthday today, I figured Cupcake Nails would be quite appropriate. I’ve got a step-by-step breakdown so you can do them too! They’re sweet, adorable, and not as hard to do as you might think. For the perfect celebration nails (or for a cupcake lover), give these a go!
A few tips before you get painting (READ!):
- It is very important to have everything out that you need before you get started. If you begin painting and have to stop to get other tools/polish out, you run the risk of ruining what you’ve already painted and it’s a waste of time.
- Do this is in a bathroom or somewhere you can afford to make a mess.
- Good quality polish is recommended.
- Ideally, these should be done on a day when you don’t have much else to do. Wet nails are so easy to mess up and they take a lot longer to dry than you think. Just because a nail is dry to the touch doesn’t mean you can’t still ruin it. If you’re too rough, you can still dent them or leave impressions. Nails aren’t 100% safe until a good 12 hours after painting (at least).
- To help the nails set faster, use a good quality, quick-drying top coat. This seals in the stuff underneath and makes it dry quicker.
- Be patient. If you work too quickly or get frustrated, you’ll wind up with a mess.
- Go to the bathroom before you start painting. Seriously. I often forget to do this then wind up having to go the second I’ve finished my perfect nails. Let me tell you something, it is not easy to go to the bathroom without messing up your freshly done nails!
- Make sure the paint from a previous step is fairly dry before you proceed with the next step.
How to Paint Cupcake Nails
- Step 1: Prep- Have your nails clean of any polish and, if you want, file them down to your ideal shape. Lay down several layers of paper towels or newspaper on your “work station.”
- Step 2: Yellow Cake Base- Remove the paintbrush from the yellow polish bottle. Using the brush, paint your pen/pencil so that the very tip is coated with a layer of yellow polish. Use pen/pencil to draw a yellow cake base onto your nails. The bottom of the base should almost touch the cuticles of your nails. The top of the cake should reach a third of the way up your nails. It will look like an upside down trapezoid in shape.
- Step 3: Pink Frosting- Remove the paintbrush from the pink polish bottle. Using the brush, paint the tip of a toothpick so that it is coated with a layer of pink polish (as in step 2). For an easier cupcake design, use the pink-coated toothpick to paint a semi-circle on top of the yellow cake base. Paint on alternate nails so that every other nail has a pink frosting top. For a more advanced design, use the pink-coated toothpick to paint a thin rounded line on top of the yellow cake base. Then, paint another on top of the first pink line, this time making it shorter. For the last layer of “frosting” make a tiny peak onto of the top pink line.
- Step 4: White Frosting- Repeat step three using the white polish on the remaining “unfrosted” cupcakes. Every other nail should have white frosting.
- Step 5: The Cherry on Top: Remove the paintbrush from the red polish bottle. Using the brush, paint your pen/pencil so that the very tip is coated with a layer of red polish. Using the pen/pencil, very carefully and lightly dot a red circle onto the top of each cupcake.
- Step 6: Top Coat: When all your nails seem fairly set and dry, lightly paint a layer of clear polish over top of each nail to seal in the cupcakes. Let dry for as long as possible and be careful with those wet nails! *Tip: Use nail polish remover & q-tips to clean up any mess you may have made on your fingers.