How to Do Emo Nails


When you're going for an emo look, the glossy reds and French manicures offered up by your local salon may not fit the bill. Emo nails add edge and personality -- without the need to throw on so much as a studded belt. Turn the classic manicure on its head and try out some emo nail art.

Anti-French Manicure

  • Put a spin on the French manicure by turning it black and white. Cut 10 1/2-inch pieces of colored tape and place them lengthwise along the edges of your nails. Sweep a base coat slowly from your nail bed to the tape and allow your nails to dry. Apply two layers of opaque black enamel to your nails, allowing the polish to run over the tape for a smooth finish. Remove the tape once your nails are completely dry. Use a small pointed brush to apply a white polish to the tip where the tape was. Apply one layer of mattifying top coat to seal the design.

Send in the Studs

  • Take your love for studs one step further than your cuffs by using them to deck out your nails. Apply one coat of a sticky base coat to each nail; this will help the studs to adhere to the polish. Follow up with a layer of the polish of your choice. Pink adds a girly touch, while black looks more mysterious. While the enamel is wet, press a 1/2-inch decorative stud onto the centre of your nail. Repeat on all nails and apply a top coat over both the polish and the studs to keep them in place.

Birds of a Feather

  • Add an intricate feather design to your nails with the help of a toothpick. Apply a base coat and follow up with a jewel-toned matte polish. Once dry, dip a toothpick into white nail polish. Position the toothpick directly above your nail bed, and drag it until you reach 1/2 inch away from the tip. Place the toothpick 1/2 inch above the nail bed and on the line you created. Drag it gently up toward the top left corner of your nail in a 1/2-inch stroke. Repeat on the other side and continue to make opposing lines until you reach the end to create a feather. Use different sized strokes for each feather.

All That Glitters

  • Use an accent nail to add a glam-rock touch to your nail look. Apply a base coat to each nail and allow it to dry. Apply black laquer to each nail, except for the ring finger on each hand. Smooth a densely packed glitter polish onto the nails that were left bare. Opt for silver for a metallic effect, or pink for a preppy contrast. Apply three layers and follow up with a glossy top coat on every nail.


  • Photo Credit valzhina/iStock/Getty Images
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