Painting your nails without getting polish all over your fingers is a struggle. Doing so when you have really tiny nails is an even bigger endeavor. But having small nail beds shouldn't discourage you from rocking a fierce mani.
Red Carpet Manicure and celebrity manicurist Elle believe it's best to keep designs for tiny nails simple and clean. "Shy away from complex nail art, as it overpowers a smaller finger/nail bed," she says.
If you understand basic color theory, then you'll understand Butter London Global Colour Ambassador Katie Jane Hughes' general rule of thumb when choosing nail colors: White can make things appear larger, and black smaller. But don't be afraid to break the rules. "It's just makeup for your nails," says Hughes. "Try stuff, see what you like. It should be fun, after all."
Read on for more tips and tricks from these nail professionals that'll help you create the illusion longer fingernails.
When shaping your nails with an emory board, be sure to mirror image the shape of your cuticle. "This always creates the strongest and most elongating, flattering shape," says Elle. FYI: Here's a handy infographic that paints a clearer picture of your cuticle and other nail anatomy.
A nude nail polish can help elongate the look of your fingers, especially if the color is matched closely to your natural skin tone. Elle's personal favorite nude is Dermelect's "A Shore Thing," a pinky, sheer beige lacquer. Not a match for you? Hughes suggests Butter London's new Sheer Wisdom Nail Tinted Moisturizer line, which comes in six shades for fair to deep complexions.
Large, stick-on accessories will overpower your nail. Instead, Hughes advises trying negative space or floating nail art. If that's too advanced for your DIY skills, she says to "try a sheer nude with a simple skinny line down the middle as it will have an elongating effect." Or Elle recommends adding a stud to one or all of your nails for an edgy look that doesn't take up too much space.
If there is not enough space for nail art, go with an ombré effect. Incorporating different nail polish shades in the same color family, Elle created this grey ombré mani on Lena Dunham.
Scroll down for more manicure inspiration for people with tiny nails.
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