Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Gradient Palm Tree Tutorial

To get the gradient palm tree nails I posted about here, just follow this photo tutorial.
1. Start out by cutting a makeup sponge into a size that's close to your thumb nail in size, but slightly larger.  On the left side, I drew in red lines to show you where I usually cut mine.
2. Next, apply a base coat to your nails.  I used Orly Bonder but you can use any base coat you like.
3. Apply one coat of white nail polish.  I love Sally Hansen Xreme Wear in White On.  Don't worry about this being perfect.  If it's streaky or has drag marks, no one will see it.  This is just to make the colors pop that you use in your gradient.  Be sure the white is completely dry before moving on to the next step.
4. Next, paint your gradient directly onto the sponge.  I used Sally Hansen Insta Dri polishes in Lightening, Heat Flash, and Flashy Fuchsia.

5. If necessary, dab off excess polish from the sponge onto a paper towel.  Then using a left to right and slight up and down motion, dab your nail with the sponge to apply the color.  Try to cover all of the white.  Don't dab too much though, or you will end up ruining the design.  Wait for this to dry completely before moving on to the next step.
This is what the nail should look like.  Notice the cuticle is going to get pretty messy!
6. Next, use a black polish, such as Wet N Wild Wild Shine in Black Creme to stamp on a palm tree.  Shany Image Plate SH19 is what I used.
7. When the stamping is completely dry, add a top coat to your design to protect your work.  I used NYC In A New York Color Minute in Grand Central Station.
8. Last, you're going to need to clean up all that polish from your cuticles.  My preferred method is to use pointed Q-tips and a tub of nail polish remover.  However, if you're really lazy, you can also just rub the polish off of your skin while in the shower.  Be careful if you're trying that method though, as it can be rough on the skin.


  1. Wow, that finger is really creepy, lol, but the tutorial is great and I like the manicure.

  2. I've wanted to try a gradient but had no idea how to go about it. You've made it seem so simple. Thank you!

    1. You're welcome! I felt the same way but it really isn't hard at all.