Rainbow Nails and my gradient technique!


Today’s nails were inspired by my inner child!  When I was a little girl (back in the 80’s) I just loved rainbows!  Rainbow stickers, rainbow spiral notebooks, rainbow earrings… pretty much anything that had a rainbow on it caught my attention.  Too bad it took me 30+ years to discover this rainbow gradient technique!  Well, this mani is dedicated to you, little Jacqui from the 80’s!  I know you would’ve loved these nails. 🙂

My first attempts at gradients were total fails- until I came up with this very effective way of using makeup sponges.  Here’s a pic of how I use my sponge for a gradient:


I start out with a standard cosmetic application wedge and use sharp scissors to cut it into 4 or 5 long skinny pieces.  I take one of the pieces, fold it in half, and dab it into a drop of nail polish on my work surface.  Then I sponge it onto my nail to create the gradient effect.  I think these folded over sponge strips work well since their surface is slightly curved, yet small-so you can dab, dab, dab away to get the paint just where you want it.  I use a different sliver of sponge for each color.  The small surface area of the sponge worked great to get the skinny lines of color for today’s rainbow gradient… but it also works well for a larger-scale gradient (like this leopard design where I only sponged on one color).  I think this technique is less messy and it’s fool-proof!!  I haven’t screwed up one gradient yet since I started doing it this way !


WHITE BASE ♥ one coat of Sally Hansen Teflon Tuff in French White Tip

RED Zoya Carmen

ORANGE AVON Orange Creamsicle


AQUA Wet n wild I Need a Refresh-mint

PURPLE Nicole by OPI I’m a Belieber

This mani makes me happy on this beautiful friday!!

Do you love rainbows as much as me??

29 thoughts on “Rainbow Nails and my gradient technique!

  1. These are FABulous! It’s getting into Pride (gay pride, that is) season here in the San Francisco area, and you know it’s ALL rainbows, all the time for Pride Week. I’m thinking a bright metallic rainbow gradient?

  2. These look awesome! They remind me of those Lisa Frank rainbow stationary sets that I always had as a kid. I’ll definitely have to give your gradient technique a try sometime too!

  3. I love these. So bright and happy! 🙂
    On a side note, I also love how you have added colored hearts to your color list to indicate what is what. How did you add those?

      • yeah…sigh I even tried those triangular makeup sponges but somehow there’s a funny texture… but I shan’t give up! ^^
        I think I saw it over at Chalkboard Nails, but I can’t really recall! Not too sure how she dampened it either

        • I know what you mean now! I got the little sponge particles stuck on my nail a few wks ago! I think it happened because i dabbed it too much and kept going over it again and again. If i used a more opaque color or if i was quicker to apply it… i dont think the sponge wouldve deteriorated like that.

  4. Wow!! You are such a great nail artist!! Love it so much, and I’m dying to have this rainbow nails. I actually suck at nail art, that’s why I end up going into a nail salon and have it done by an expert. Lucky for you, though. You don’t need to spend any penny for this thing to be done.

    • Yes- i use a fresh sponge piece to dab on one color at a time.
      I have tried the usual technique of painting stripes on a whole sponge and pressing it on my nail…. but it’s real messy and not as effective for me.

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