Gloss up your at-home manicures with some easy DIY nail art. And the great news is, you probably have all the tools you need under your bathroom sink as we speak. 

Here’s how to use everyday objects to craft gorgeous DIY nail art.


Not just for martini olives anymore, toothpicks can help you make intricate nail designs. Dip the fine tip in a dab of paint to draw flowers, spots, or stripes. You can even cut the sharp tip off with scissors to make a rounder dot stamp. 

Another cool way to use toothpicks is to create a marbled effect by dragging them gently between two layers of wet paint, the same way you would when mixing batter for marbled cake. 


Tape can help you play with the negative space. Master a french tip by placing a small piece of tape in the design you want (half moon, triangle, rectangle) just under where you’d want your tip to end. Once the tape is in place, paint the tip right up to the edge of the paint. It’s ok if a little paint gets on the tape itself but none should go under it. While the paint is still wet, peel the tape off to reveal your perfectly shaped tip. 

You can use a similar technique to fashion grids, vertical stripes, or even a stained glass window pattern. Nail Pros suggest using special striping tape but thinly cut scotch tape will work in a pinch. 


Are ya ready kids? Makeup or kitchen sponges make for great nail art tools. Layer different polish colors on them, then dab the sponge on your nail for an ombre look. Be sure to thoroughly clean the sponge before using it to paint with. 

Lace or Tulle

If you have an old tutu, lacy top, or just some fabric scraps you bought after binging Project Runway, you can easily make a delicate nail stencil. Place a small piece on top of your nail, then paint a layer over it. After removing the lace you’ll be left with an intricate design.

General Tips

  • Always apply the lightest color first and apply darker colors over it. 
  • When using tape, make sure to remove it immediately after painting so it doesn’t smudge.
  • Make sure your basecoat is completely dry before beginning your nail art. 
  • When you’re done, seal your masterpiece with a clear top coat. 

Still in need of ideas? Schedule a virtual appointment with a nail pro for a step-by-step walk through.