How to Do a Rainbow French Manicure Yourself (PHOTOS)

I've never attempted to do a French manicure before, but when I saw a rainbow French mani on Pinterest, I had to try! I love the idea -- such a fun, pretty take on the traditional nude and white.

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It did take a bit of time, but wasn't as difficult as I thought it would be. Here's how I did it ...

How do you like it?



Photos via April Daniels Hussar

  • Step 1: First you need a rainbow of polish colors!


    Image via April Hussar

    For my rainbow manicure, I used all of the nail polishes pictured here. That's alotta polish! A couple of these colors are sold out, but anything similar would work, obviously.

    Base coat: Essie nail polish in "Spin the Bottle" (a great new nude from their spring '14 collection).
    Colors, from left to right: The sparkly green from the Sephora by O.P.I. "Scentsational" collection (currently sold out); Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in "Barracuda"; Butter London 3 Free Nail Lacquer in "Pimms"; L'Oreal nail color in "Lacey Lilac" (from spring '13); Clinique A Different Nail Enamel in "Pinkini" (also sold out).
    Top coat:
    Sally Hansen Dries Instantly Top Coat. (Love this stuff!)

  • Step 2: Start with your base coat


    Image via April Hussar

    One coat of the Essie "Spin the Bottle" was too sheer for the look I was going for, so I did two.

  • Step 3: Then it's time for the colors!


    Image via April Hussar

    This part is the most difficult, obviously! I didn't worry about smearing polish on my fingers -- that's easy to clean up after. Another tip I've picked up along the way: when working on your non-dominant hand, hold the nail brush steady and rotate your finger underneath it. That way your dominate hand is sort of doing the work. I had to do a few nails over again ... no big deal! (I decided that dark pink on my pinky looked like my finger got chopped off, so I replaced it with a green.)

  • These guys are your friends ...


    Image via April Hussar

    I did a lot of clean-up work with these guys dipped into nail polish remover!

  • The final result!


    Image via April Hussar

    What's that? You want to see my right hand too?

  • Rainbow French Manicure!


    Image via April Hussar

    They're not totally matching, and if you look super close, you can see some mistakes, but who cares? I love it!

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