If you’re into fantasy and love dragons, you’re going to want to try out our dragon scale nail art design!
For the scales:
You’ll be using four different polishes — two shades of the same color for the scales themselves (henceforth known as “lighter shade” and “darker shade”), a darker color for shadow, and a lighter color for highlights. I used light green, dark green, dark blue, and a weak shimmering yellow.
For the dragon:
Use your darker shade and your shadow color for the dragon itself, white or silver for the teeth, and then warmer shades — red, orange, yellow — for the flame.
Something to lightly smudge on the gradient — Q-tip, tiny piece of a make-up sponge, or even a rolled up piece of paper towel.
Make sure to let all polish dry between steps.
First things first:
Do the base coat using your lighter shade — light green, for me. If you want, you can paint the thumbnail white or another pale color.
Scales Step 1:
Draw a scalloped pattern on your first, middle, ring, and pinky nails using your darker shade. The pattern itself should look something like this:
And the finished product will look something like this:
Scales Step 2:
Dip your smudging tool in your darker shade and use it to lightly fill in the rounded bottom of your scales, letting the color fade as you go up. Make sure not to get too much polish on your smudging tool, or it’ll go all over the place. You may find you have to do the bottom first, let it dry, and then add a little bit more just above to help it look more like a gradient.
Scales Step 3:
Dip your toothpick in your shadow polish and use it to delicately outline the left half of the scale.
Scales Step 4:
Use either a clean smudging tool, a blunted toothpick, or a small dotting tool to make a small dot or smear of your highlight polish in the top right corner of the scale.
Voila! You have achieved scales! If you want, you can do this on all five nails, but if you’re interested in having a fire-breathing thumb, you can go on to the next set of steps:
Dragon Step 1:
Use your darker shade to outline the dragon you want. I just did a pair of jaws because I was working with a toothpick and the thumb is not a huge canvas on which to work. This is the pattern I made for myself:
Now use that same shade to fill in everything except the teeth, making sure not to smudge your outline.
Dragon Step 2:
When the jaws are dry, you can use your toothpick to apply tiny bits of white polish to the teeth. It’s okay if you cover most of the outline.
Dragon Step 3:
If, like me, you wanted to make sure that your dragon has a distinct outline, you can dip your toothpick in your shadow polish and use it to go around the edges.
Dragon Step 2:
While any step of the dragon jaws is drying, you can work on the flame. Using one of your warm colors, draw a bunch of flame-like swirls coming out of the dragon’s mouth. If you only have one, you can fill the entire thing in; if you have multiple, you can leave spaces for the other colors. Wait for each color to dry before adding more swirls with the next polish.