Nail Art for Busy People

Pink Base: Ink-Ling of You (OPI) | Turquoise Tip: Mint Sprint (Sally Hansen Insta-Dri) | Accent Polka Dots: Posh (Revlon)
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Pink Base: Ink-Ling of You (OPI) | Turquoise Tip: Mint Sprint (Sally Hansen Insta-Dri) | Accent Polka Dots: Posh (Revlon) | Rings: Catbird, Vintage, Cathy Waterman

I believe in fiscal responsibility, and my attitude boils down to this: The less you spend on manicures, the more you can spend on clothes.

I’ve been doing my own nails for three years, and my self-penned designs and cray color combinations have become my signature. The first thing onlookers often ask? “God, how long did THAT take you?”

Not only is this an incredibly speedy polish change, there are zero artistic skills necessary — you just need an hour to kill and the patience to follow these five easy steps.

Clockwise from top left: The polishes I used; Striping the tip; Final product; Using a toothpick to make some dots.
Clockwise from top left: The polishes I used; Striping the tip; Final product; Using a toothpick to make some dots.

1. Apply one layer of base coat to bare, clean nails. I used Essie’s ridge filler.

2. Apply two coats of pink polish. Wait 5 minutes.

3. Use teal polish for the tip: position brush sideways onto the side of the nail closest to you. (On the left hand, the end of the brush will be barely touching the right side of the cuticle; on the right hand, this will be the left side of the cuticle.) Hold the brush still. Roll the nail toward your body, sliding the brush across the tip. Doesn’t have to be perfect, just opaque.

4. Dip a toothpick into a bottle of bright green polish and dot the toothpick in the center of the bottom of the nail. Repeat three times at the top of nail, overlapping the line between the teal and the pink. This creates a scallop edge and a mild ombre with zero effort.

5. Apply top coat (I used Seche Vite). Soak in compliments for the next week.