Friday, April 6, 2012

Galaxy / Nebula Nails Tutorial

Yes, I was so happy with these, I showed you the picture first!
Here is my attempt at a tutorial- be kind!

Colors used:
OPI Black Onyx (any black will do), Orly Androgynie (any glitter that has a galactic feel to it- yes, an abstract description, I know!), Orly Spark (a yellow polish), Ulta Sweethear Pink (a medium bright pink), Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure Thinking of Blue (a dark blue), white acrylic paint, Orly Twightlight (any fine glitter top that isn't terribly dense coat will do)
Tools required:
Bits of a makeup sponge, tweezers for holding your sponge-y bits)  and a dotting tool or toothpick

Step 1:
Paint your nails black- this will serve as the background for your manicure- the sky for your galaxy!

Step 2:
Use a glitter that will serve as some of the background stars in your sky. I chose Androgynie because the different sized glitter would give the illusion of stars being farther or closer in the sky, but ultimately I don't know that it made a huge difference.

Step 3:
Take one of your small sponge bits and paint with yellow polish, I used Orly Spark. You will use this to start your little nebulas. Be light handed with this- you don't want the yellow to be complete opaque- dab the sponge on a piece of paper first to make sure you don't have too much polish on it. Have fun with the shapes- the galaxy doesn't exactly have uniform shapes. I had some of mine go diagonally across the nail, others make almost a "C" shape. Have fun with it!

Step 4:
Next, you will use the pink as an accent on the yellow nebulas you started. Use a clean sponge piece with the pink around the centers of the areas you created with the yellow. Remember, this isn't an exact science- these are abstract shapes.
Step 5:
Use your dark blue polish with the sponge to blend together the edges of the yellow/pink nebulas with the black background. Just lightly sponge around the edges. Don't worry if you get some on your finger- you can always clean up later.
Step 6:
Let's add some stars to the sky! Using a very fine dotting tool or toothpick, take your white acrylic paint and dot some stars. Test your dots on a piece of paper first to make sure you're happy with their size.

Step 7:
You're almost there! Let your white acrylic paint have a minute or two to dry- you don't want to smear all that awesomeness you've been working on. After they're dry, use a fine glitter top coat that is not dense to pull it all together. The small bits of glitter will look like itty bitty stars in your galaxies. After that, just put on your top coat, and you're good to go!

These get so many compliments and look more much complicated than they really are. I hope you give it a try!


  1. i love this! thanks for including your step by step photos, too.

    1. I hope the step by step pictures are helpful :) glad you enjoyed it!

  2. Love, love, LOVED these nails!! Didn't get to discuss in detail but I was very impressed! Might even try it myself since you were kind enough to leave a step by step! <3

    (deb frm Tim's ofc)

    1. I am so glad you liked them! It is so easy, I bet you can do it on both hands!