I am soooo excited! My favorite holiday is finally here. I just love all that the 4th of July has to offer; the BBQ’s, parades, fireworks, being with family, cold treats, celebrating our freedoms, just hanging out and relaxing, etc. We are only a few days away so you better pull out those polishes. For my mother this year, we did a simple, but adorable star and stripe idea. This nail art can be done by anyone, but to help you get it just right I have provided a step-by-step tutorial below . . .

Note: I will be providing instructions on how to achieve this look with plain polish, along with Gel Polish.Stars & Stripes

Step 1: Prep Nails

View my post on Nail Polish Prep.


Step 2: Paint Color onto Nails

Paint all the nails, except the ring finger, with two coats of red polish. I used the Shellac color called, [amazon text=Wildfire&asin=B003OH0KBA]. Paint the ring finger nails with one coat of blue polish. I used the Shellac color called, [amazon text=Water Park&asin=B003OH0KBA].

Gel Polish: Apply two coats of polish. Cure 2 minutes in the UV light, or 1 minute in an LED light.


Step 3: Glitter Nail

Paint the ring fingers with a second coat of blue polish. While the nail polish is still wet gently dust a fine layer of blue glitter onto the blue polish, just as I did for my Simply in Love nails. I used Martha Stewart craft glitter, color lapis lazuli.

Gel Polish: Apply one coat blue polish and dust the glitter. Cure 2 minutes in the UV light, or 1 minute in an LED light.

Now apply top coat to the blue glitter nail to seal in the glitter. (Before re-dipping your brush into the polish, after each nail, make sure there isn’t any glitter on it. If there is, wipe it on a paper towel to remove the glitter. You don’t want to contaminate your polish.) Don’t worry about the glitter around your nails. Once dry, it removes best if you just wash it off in the sink just as you would do if you were doing glitter nails.

Gel Polish: Paint top coat onto the nail. Cure 2 minutes in the UV light, or 1 minute in an LED light.

Stars & Stripes


Step 4: Stripes

I free-handed painting stripes with a very small stylus as I did here, but I used white acyrlic 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.Stars & Stripes 010


Step 5: Star

To do a large star on your ring finger nail is quite easy, if you follow the picture guide I have provided below. 1- Begin by placing a dot of paint in the middle of the nail. 2- Pull the paint up to make the top point of the star. 3- Pull the paint out to make the two side points. 4- Pull down the paint for the two bottom points of the star. 5- Pick up some more paint and fill in your “guide” to make a cute chunky star.

(Note: I did the star with acrylic craft paint. . . Some polishes can dry almost transparent which makes the image hazy and you won’t get the wow factor you are going for.)

Stars & Stripes Tutorial


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 into the skin.

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

Stars & Stripes

Remove gel polish after 2-3 weeks, check out Gel Polish Removal for the quickest, easiest and best way to remove gels.