31 May 2008

How to do nail marbling effect

Marbling Prep

In this close-up on marbling we are going to take a look at marbling on tips or directly onto the natural nail.

For designing on tips make sure you prepare a skewer or chop stick by wrapping double sided tape around one end, this will be used to attach the tip to. Then apply a base coat to the tip.

For work on a natural nail be sure to have a cotton bud and nail polish remover ready.

Prepare the natural nail as per usual, wipe the surface of the nail with alcohol to remove oil and debris, then apply a base coat.

Timing is critical with marbling so being fully prepared is a must.

Nail polish hardens quickly on the water surface so as part of your preparation be sure to have all the bottles you are planning to use open and ready to go.

A~G: Fill a cup or glass with water, almost to the lip -90% full. Add the colors of your choice by placing each drop gently onto the surface of the water. Nail polish is an important element in marbling.

The nail polish should be of good quality and of a liquid even consistency. Poorer quality polish of inconsistent texture will not result in the desired effect.

H~O: Use a pin or needle, dragging it from one edge to the other to create the desired look. Experiment, have fun!

P: Insert the nail or tip into the water.

Q: Remove the excess nail polish while the tip is submerged. This is key to the success of this type of marbling.

R: Once the rough edges have been cleaned remove the tip from the water.

FOR THE NATURAL NAIL-Remove any excess polish from the surrounding skin using a cotton bud dipped in nail polish remover

S: Apply a top coat.

FOR THE NATURAL NAIL-Apply a top coat, wash the hand, then apply an essential oil moisturizer to the skin to prevent drying.

Another thing I can add is avoid quick drying nail polish and while it is best to be in a well ventilated area when working with nail polish, a windy environment will cause the nail polish to dry too quickly. Experiment with your work environment to find the optimum spot.


  1. thanks for the how-to! i just tried this with your super easy directions + pictures. i kind of made a mess the first time because i skipped step Q, but the second time i ended up with awesome nails. :)

  2. Glad that you find it useful! haha... dont worry, there's always a first time and practice makes perfect.

    ps: i made a big mess for my first few tries too! LOL

  3. Hey this has been very helpful, especially with the pics provided. I've tried it first and it was a total mess but then for the second attempt I ended up with cool pretty nails. Thanks much!

  4. wow this is so so much easier especially with illustrations. thanx alot for this its a great help as i got something new for my project!!

  5. what kind os base coat and nail polish can i use

  6. hi, you may use any ordinary base coat (such as OPI base coat). As for the nail polish, invest in better brands to achieve better results. this marbling effect may not work on those cheap/low quality nail polish. Highly recommend OPI =)

  7. wow pretty nails! I love them the first time i tried i totally FAILED! But im gonna try it again and hopefully the sucker will work

  8. hey i tried this buy the first circle of nail polish i add to the water always hardens into a layer. the subsequent drops don't spread to the ends of the cup like yours. what should i do?@_@

  9. This was a great help! Thank you :D

  10. What kind of nalpolish works best at water marbling??

  11. wow! really nice, im sooooooooooooooo gonnatry it out! :D

  12. when ever i put mine in it either stays as a blob of nail varnish or just hardens in a layer

  13. Is there a trick I'm miss my nail polish is looking like plastic before I can drag the pin.

  14. Any polish works cheap or otherwise, I've been doing this for a while..your water temp is super's also important to put at least one drop of remover in the polish and shake it up so it's thin enough.

  15. i dont get it.....

  16. Can I put nail polish remover in my nail polish? It wont spread in the water!!

  17. you mention that the water temp is important must it be hot water, room temp, or lukewarm water?


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