Ombre (Shade Gradient) Nail Art Tutorial

So today I tried a type of nail art look called Ombre. This is when you basically pick one color in five shades, ranging from light to dark. Then you paint each nail a color to get a gradient shade progression effect. This one isn’t as “in your face” as other nail art looks with patterns, and you can really determine how dramatic you want to go with it. I personally like it best when the shades are very close and in the same color so that the gradient isn’t as drastic. Otherwise, it could end up looking like you just painted each nail a random color when the effect you are trying to get is actually a shading of light to dark or even one color gradually transitioning to another.

I got my inspiration when I opened my newest Cosmo, and saw this cool pic (as well as some others I may try later on).

“Purple Haze Ombre” Cosmo Vol. 252, No. 2 pg. 185

Here’s another inspiration pic of Lauren Conrad sporting the Ombre look in blue.

You can go really either way, light on thumb to dark pinky as I did in my nail art gradient ombre tutorial, or reverse it. There’s really no rules, and you can get as creative as you want! It’s actually a lot easier than it looks, and here’s proof in my first ever attempt! I was also being lazy and didn’t use 5 store-bought colors which would have made it a lot easier. Instead, I just grabbed colors I already had (4 colors), and mixed them to get the shading effect.I think it turned out pretty good, and I ended up getting a lot of compliments! How do you think it turned out?

CLICK HERE to see how I did this nail art Ombre look

I would LOVE to see your creative take on the Ombre nail art trend. Leave me a comment linking to your pic or simply let me know what colors you’d use for this look.


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  1. […] a nice base to paint. Especially if you’re a nail-biter like me. You can see an example in my ombre nail art tutorial where I paint over artificial […]

  2. […] this? That’s right, I actually used this color in my Ombre Nail Art Tutorial on my thumbs! This shade is a beautiful pastel lavender that isn’t too “purpley,” […]

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