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Nail foil pattern tutorial

Hi and happy Monday! Today I have the long promised nail foil pattern tutorial for you guys. I used this style to create the “We Heart Nail Art” design last week. Today I have designed some fish scales using the same technique.


Nail foil pattern is a pattern with metallic finish and it is created with nail foil. You can purchase nail foil quite cheap via eBay. For the Nail foil pattern you will also need nail foil glue and a toothpick. As of polishes I used Nails Inc. New York Noir as a base (black) and Deborah Lippmann Across the Universe (glitter). For this design I also used a tiny bit of make up sponge. Ok, let’s see how it’s done then ;)


0. Start off with a base colour of your choice (I am using black).


1. Dip the toothpick in nail glue and then use it as a pen. Create the scale pattern by drawing little U-shapes.




2. Wait for the nail glue to dry from gooey into a sticky stage (mine also turns transparent when ready for foil).


3. Cut the foil in a workable size.


4. Gently press the foil piece on top of the the sticky glue pattern.



5. Tataa! Beautiful metallic fish scale pattern.


6. Add glitter with a small piece of make up sponge.


7. Add your top coat (I used Poshe fast dry top coat). Now repeat on each of your nail :)



Overall a pretty simple technique with amazing results. I really love how unique the metallic finish looks. From my short experience I can say that the one colour foil works better than the pattern foil. I am quite excited to try out different patterns, such as swirls for example.

Thanks for reading and please let me know what you think of my nail foil pattern tutorial! :) xoxox

Vector credit Vecteezy.

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  1. Robin

    Great tutorial! I’ve only ever just used nail foil on almost dry polish (without glue), but with glue you get so much better results and you can make small patterns. I really should get some nail glue :) And this is such a gorgeous design! I love the metallic colours :)

    • A.J.

      Yeah me too, glue is way better- worth buying ;)

  2. Mina

    LOVED the idea! And your tutorial was most kind and really easy to follow! Looking forward to trying this one ;)

    • A.J.

      Looking forward to seeing your version :)

  3. Beca

    Wow, these look beautiful, your work never ceases to amaze me! :D xxx

    • A.J.

      Aww thanks!!! xxx

  4. Ali

    Gorgeous! Great tutorial! I’m a couple of weeks away from picking up a fairly large stash of foils, so I’m keeping an eye out for interesting ways to use them!

    • A.J.

      Oooo nice!!! Looking forward to whatever you come up with :D

  5. Craftynail

    what a great technique! this is why I love your blog :)
    Craftynail recently posted…Mediterranean Gradient for #NAILLINKUPMy Profile

    • A.J.

      ;) Thank you!!!

  6. Jayna

    This design is great – I love it’s simplicity! I’ve never tried using foil on my nails before, so this is a great tutorial! It’s really helpful! Thank you! :)
    Jayna recently posted…Models Own Corrector Pen ReviewMy Profile

    • A.J.

      You're welcome, thanks for the kind words :)

  7. Vic

    I am so totally in love with these!

  8. Niki T.

    Wow, that is so cool! I love how it turned out! Thank you for sharing!! =)

    • A.J.

      Hehe my pleasure!!!

  9. Chaosophia

    I never had a craving to use foil before, but now I definitely want to try it out.

    • A.J.

      It is indeed, I love foil now :D

  10. Lisa

    This is gorgeous! love the nail polished used loads. May have to give this tutorial a go.

    • A.J.

      Oooh, would love to see your version!!!

  11. Sony

    This is so beautiful


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