I love animal prints, and a leopard print manicure is one of the easiest nail art designs to execute. While I used a dotting tool when creating this look, a bobby pin and/or toothpick could be used instead if you do not have a dotting tool on hand.
I started this design by applying 2 coats of “Earth Dragon” from Soothing Soul Nail Lacquer. I think the metallic gold base elevates the look and really helps the pattern to pop.
Once my base was completely dry I placed a couple of drops of “PSL Season” from NCLA onto my palette and grabbed my dotting tool. (For my palette I used a glossy promotional postcard that was destined for the waste bin but you could also use a yogurt lid, plastic baggie, or really anything!) Using the larger end of the dotting tool I placed a few irregular shaped dots on each nail to create the leopard spots. You don’t want these to be perfect circles so if your hands are shaky it’s no problem! What makes this design so fun and easy to do is that it actually looks better when things get a little imperfect! I like to vary the placement from nail to nail and use more or fewer spots depending on the size of the nail. I let these spots dry for a few minutes before moving onto the next step to avoid smudging.
Once my spots were mostly dry, I placed a couple of drops of “One Coat Black” from Holo Taco onto my palette and using the smaller end of the dotting tool, drew 2-3 “C” shaped curved lines around each of my spots, making sure that I was NOT fully outlining the spots. I also added a few small black dots to help fill in any gaps in the design. You can use any black polish for this step but I think it’s best to use one that is highly pigmented as you don’t want to have to go back and retrace these lines to get them opaque.
Once my design was completely dry I used Starrily‘s “Matter” – a matte top coat which gave a nice satin matte finish to the design.
I love leopard print manicures because they are so easy to do (even when you are working with your non-dominant hand) and you really don’t need any special tools if you don’t have them. While I did this manicure using classic leopard print colors, you can really use any colors you want to customize this to your own style. I think this would be a really fun design to do with neons for the summer, or in rainbow colors to bring a Lisa Frank vibe!