One of the greatest things about Halloween is that nearly anything goes, and no one blinks an eye.
Drips of blood on your nails? Cool. A Frankenstein-themed design for all 10 fingers? Sign us up.
Take total advantage of the playful holiday spirit and test out one (or all!) of these easy DIY Halloween nail art ideas from celebrity manicurists that strike the perfect balance between ghoulish and glam.
The scariest part of all? You can actually do it yourself, right at home.
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Take it from Beyoncé’s manicurist Lisa Logan: there is a way to make blood splatter look frightening and fun.
“Blood drip nails are a cool way of giving you a contrast for Halloween,” she says, noting that people usually choose a white-out white or deep inky black base with a candy apple red.
To start, choose your two colors then paint all of your nails with your base color and let dry. Next, it’s time to get that blood dripping. Logan loves to use the bright Nails.INC Paddington Peace Out shade for this style.
“Take a dotter to where you want drips to fall and fill them in with polish,” explains Logan, with drips coming down from the cuticle.
Black Cat French Mani
If your vibe runs more cuddly than killer, manicurist Elaine Quandt suggests giving your classic French mani a Halloween twist.
Start by tracing a black base shade, like ORLY’s Liquid Vinyl, in a half circle at the end of your nail and once dry, create two pointy triangles on the side of the half moon. Then take a nail art brush (Quandt likes the precision of ORLY’s Dotter Duo) and dab on the eyes with white polish. Once dry, swipe a small vertical black line in the white circle to finish the eyes.
Cool Candy Corn
A modern, graphic look, but make it Halloween with inspiration from nail master, Jin Soon Choi. With a steady hand — or a bit of help from tape — draw a straight line in a black polish a third of the way down your nail and fill the space up to your cuticle. Then paint a line across the bottom third of your nail in a bright orange shade, like JINSoon’s creamsicle hue Hope, and fill to the tip.
Once dry, use the same black shade as before to paint a thin straight line at the top of the orange section to frame the center’s negative space. Rock the negative space graphic to keep it modern or swipe a glittery shade across the middle for a jazzier look.
Who knew a cobweb could be so cute? To turn your nail into a delicate web, Choi says to start with two coats of a creamy white varnish. After it dries, use a fine brush to draw three lines outward from the center of the side of the nail in an inky black shade. Complete the web by starting from the inner corner and trace thin lines in a semicircle around the three larger strands. Top it off with an ultra glossy topcoat, like JINsoon Top Gloss.
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Red Hot Daggers
For a hint of Halloween weirdness, a neutral nail with a sharp, bloody angled edge is celebrity nail artist Mazz Hanna’s go-to. Swipe on your favorite nude or neutral as a base and use tape (Hanna recommends washi tape) to form as dramatic of a stiletto dagger shape as you can, then apply two coats of a rich, red hue.
With this technique, Hanna warns that you always need to let the polish dry before removing the tape, or else your nails will actually look like a bloody mess.
The dark arts are calling, and this spellbinding style gets a DIY makeover, thanks to new and ultra detailed nail stickers.
The trick with nail stickers is to start with a sticky base layer, like ORLY’s Bonder base coat, says Hanna. “This base coat has a rubberized finish, acting like a double-sided tape for polish.”
Next, apply a dark shade for the design’s backdrop, wait for it to dry, then pop on a nail decal and seal it with a matte top coat for an extra spooky feel.
Eye See You
For a playful twist on an evil eye, paint two coats of a metallic black, like Le Chat’s Rock the Mic, or go for a glittery shade, then make a dot for the eye by using a dot tool. Or use this clever trick from Elle, a celeb nail artist who works with J.Lo and Blake Lively.
“Dip a toothpick into the polish and place on the nail,” she instructs. “The pressure and amount of polish will determine the size — more for bigger and less for smaller — and then do a second white dot next to the first to make the other eye.”
Finish by using the same technique to make the black eye iris and place toward the side to exaggerate the googly effect.
For a Halloween mani that won't take a lot of effort, but will still be seasonally on brand, you can’t go wrong with an easy 3-step ghost design, with inspiration courtesy of Choi.
Start by layering on a coat of black varnish. Once that's dry, draw a high swooshy semi-circle in a creamy white at the tips of the nails. “The kind of ghost is up to your imagination,” Choi says.
Finish by dotting the tip of the black brush where you’d like the eyes to be.
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