We are off to the cabin to spend a week at the lake. I am so excited to just sit back and read a book in a beach chair while listening to the waves hit the shore and the boys play in the water and sand. I knew I wanted a manicure that would have the color of the lake, be fun and would be perfect for a week in the sun.

Step 1: Prep Nails

View my post on Nail Polish Prep.

Step 2: Paint Nails

Paint the thumb, middle, and pinky nails with TWO coats of blue polish. I used the Shellac color called, Cerulean Sea.

Paint the ring and pointer nails with TWO coats of white polish. I used the Shellac color, called Cream Puff.

Gel Polish: Apply polish and cure in light (cure after each coat). Cure 2 minutes in the UV light, or 1 minute in an LED light.

Step 3: Polka-dots

Now on my pointer fingers I painted large and small polka-dots using the colors blue, pink, green and yellow acrylic paint. I attached a video below to show how I did my sun spots.


Step 4: Stripes

I free-handed painting medium stripes with a very small stylus as I did here, but I used green, white, pink, orange and yellow acrylic paint instead of gel polish.  Note: If you don’t feel comfortable free-handing the stripes you could use tape as a guide as I did for this design. I attached a video below to show how I did my stripes.

Step 5: Sun

Now on my ring finger I painted a yellow sun with a light yellow and a dark yellow in acrylic paint. I attached a video below to show how I did my sun.

Note: When hand painting images on your nails use acrylic craft paints, not polish. You will get crisper lines and much more pop than you would with polish. Some polishes can sometimes dry almost transparent which makes the image hazy and you won’t get the wow factor you are going for.

Step 6: Apply Final Top Coat

Now apply your top coat. Make sure the paint is completely dry before adding top coat to help avoid smearing.

Gel Polish: Apply top coat and cure in UV light for 2 minutes or 1 minute in an LED light.

Step 7: Allow to Dry and Apply Cuticle Oil

Allow your polish to dry completely. Apply a cuticle oil just around your nails on the cuticle and rub it into the skin.

Gel Polish: Remove sticky residue on top of nails with a little alcohol or polish remover and apply cuticle oil.