Brains in Fashion

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4! Simple Festive Nail Designs

14th December 2018

Nothing completes a Christmas outfit more than a set of Christmas nails. Why not save some money this year and do your nails yourself? We have 4 easy Christmas nail designs which require minimal effort and tools!

We used different coloured nail polishes and this set of brushes from Amazon. You can use any nail polish you already have, or we’ve listed all the colours we used at the end of the article!

1! Penguins

Penguin Nails.JPG

These nails are adorable and so easy to recreate. You’ll need a black, white and orange polish.

  1. Start with a black base on all your nails and wait for them to dry off.

  2. Using a white polish, paint an oval which ends about 2/3 up the nail.

  3. Use a dotting tool to create two white dots above the oval.

  4. Once the white has dried, dot a smaller circle of black inside the white dots.

  5. Use an orange polish to dot two feet at the tip of your nail and create a triangle beak just below the eyes

  6. Set with a top coat

2! Fairy Lights

Fairy Light Nails.JPG

For this design, you’ll need a white and black polish and 3-5 coloured polishes.


  1. Paint all your nails white and leave to dry

  2. Using a thin brush and black polish, draw a line across all your nails. Be sure to make it a little wavy, kinky and curly (just like fairy lights would be)

  3. Using a small dotting tool, add some coloured lights along the length of the black line. You want the lights to be bulb-shaped, so try to drag the dot slightly.

  4. You can add some white dots within the coloured lights to make them look shiny, but this step is optional

  5. Set with a top coat

3! Candy Canes

Candy Cane Nails.JPG

These are almost good enough to eat… but please don’t! You’ll need a white, green and red polish. Be sure to check out our DIY Crystal Candy Canes too!

  1. Paint all your nails white and leave to dry

  2. Using a thin brush, paint red diagonal stripes. Make sure you leave enough room in between for another stripe

  3. Paint green diagonal stripes in between the red stripes

  4. Set with a top coat

4! Santa Hats

Santa Hat Nails.JPG

For this design, you’ll need a French pink, white and red polish. A red glitter polish is optional!


  1. Paint all your nails French pink and leave to dry

  2. Paint triangle in red, with the base at the tip of your nail. At the point of the triangle, paint a small curve down to create a floppy hat (we used a red glitter to create an accent nail)

  3. Using a large dotting tool, add white to the bottom of the hat. Make sure the white covers the full tip of the nail.

  4. Using the same dotting tool, add a white bobble to the top of the hat

  5. Set with a top coat




If you try out any of these nail designs or have some festive designs of your own, send us your pictures for your chance to be featured! You can send pictures via email ( or social media (@wonkscience) with the hashtag #STEMintoChristmas!


Nail Colours:


Black: Barry M Gelly- Black Forest (47)

White: Essie 1 Blanc White

Orange: Essie 67 Meet Me At Sunset

Red: Revlon Nail Enamel Revlon Red

Glitter Red: China Glaze Ruby Pumps

Blue : Essie 94 Lapiz of Luxury 

Dark Blue: Essie 92 Aruba Blue

Gold: Barry M Molten Metal Gold Digger

Green: Barry M Gelly- Watermelon

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