15 Amazing Rainbow Nails to Help You Celebrate Pride
by Alyssa K. Priebe
Pride season is upon us and people everywhere are celebrating gay rights and spreading the love. If you want to show your pride, but don’t want to dress head-to-toe in ROYGBIV, give some of these rainbow nails a try.
These trendy rainbow nails subtly show your pride, which makes them a great choice for days at the office. Simply use any neutral polish like this nude base and swipe across your favorite colors of the rainbow. Get the complete Neon-Tipped Nails tutorial here.
If bright colors aren’t your thing, then this pretty pastel design from Lulu’s is exactly what you need. Using a different color for each nail, simply paint a smooth coat and repeat until you get the desired coverage. You could even add a coat of glitter or a fun nail charm to spruce it up.
Rainbow Waterfall Manicure
This super elegant manicure from Sammy at The Nailasaurus incorporates the rainbow colors beautifully. You’ll need a variety of polishes (Sammy used 20), a nail art brush and a lot of patience. The technique itself is pretty simple, use the brush to apply different colors, but the trick is placing the right colors in the right places. Check out Sammy’s full Waterfall Nail Art Tutorial to master the waterfall effect.
Side by Side Stripes
Another dual color mani, this idea is great for incorporating the rainbow colors stylishly. After painting a white base coat, place striping tape vertically down the center of each nail to create sections. Next, paint each section a different color. Get the full Somewhere Over the Rainbow guide here.
Another fabulous manicure from The Nailasaurus, these nails complement any pride event perfectly. Your tools: a flat nail brush (like this one), a paper plate or surface that can get dirty and a small amount of acetone. Drip some polish onto the plate and add a few drops of acetone, mixing until it thins. Next, lightly paint across the nail repeat for each color. Hint: start with your lightest shade and layer the darker over for good color balance.
Bright Polka Dots
These polka dot nails Jessica from Luv My Lacquer created help you add rainbow colors creatively. Start with a white base (are you sensing a pattern here?) and then use a dotting tool to create your circles. Alternate colors and sizes to get your desired look. Add some sparkle with a clear coat of glitter.
Electric Nail Art
Make a statement with this electric manicure. Pick your favorite colors from the rainbow, we love the bright hues chosen here, and paint your nails with each, following the rainbow’s color pattern. Next, using a detail brush, draw a black heard in the center of your nail. Let it dry and then add the daisy-like design in white. Get the full Electric Daisy Nail Art tutorial here.
Loud and Proud
Nails by Jema created this out-spoken manicure using a white base coat, striping tape and a thin brush. You can pick whatever characters and symbols you want, but we love how Jema chose “No H8” to stand up to bullying and a double heart to symbolize love. Now this is a nail design that makes a statement.
Gay-American Pride Flag
Cristine from Simply Nailogical goes all out with this pride flag manicure, and we’re obsessed. You’ll need red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, white and navy polishes along with nail vinyls to create this look. Sure, these nails take a little work, but by following this video on her blog, you can create this prideful design.
Multi-Color Leopard Print
For a unique way to incorporate rainbow nails, look no further than this leopard print design from Chalkboard Nails. You could go with pastel colors for a more feminine style, or stick with primaries like Sarah did. To make the spots, use a small dotting tool to create the white center. Then, using the same (or smaller) dotting tool, add small black dots around. Learn to make perfect spots with this Leopard Print Nail Art tutorial.
Heart to Heart
Hearts definitely symbolize love, and this manicure from The Daily Nail totally represents equality. This look uses a brushed gradient in a rainbow of colors. To the get the heart effect, first paint the gradient, then place heart vinyls over the gradient and paint the nail white. Once you remove the vinyl, you are left with the stacking effect. Finish with a top coat and that’s it.
Negative space designs continue to rule the nail scene. Sonya from Parlor incorporated the trend into this prideful manicure. The minimalist design may not seem like much, but it looks very elegant. You’ll want to start with a clear base coat for protection and then use striping tape for even lines and dotting tools for the hearts. If you feel it’s too simple, you can always paint your other nails in rainbow colors or neutrals.
Stand out with this symbolic manicure. Maya from Filed and Styled used a variety of colors, striping tape and thin brushes to create this rainbow nail design. She free-styled the heart, but you can use striping tape here too, just make sure your nails are completely dry.
Colorful triangles pop against a white base in these rainbow nails by Sarah from Workaday Beauty. She used triangle rainbow appliques to make this nail design, but you could also use striping tape. Simply outline a triangle and then use a few more thin pieces to create the different stripes. Add a top coat for protection and you have an on-point mani for the next pride parade.
Sugar Spun Nail Art
This nail design not only looks like a rainbow, but also creates a 3D effect to your tips. Madison from Fundamentally Flawless used a spun sugar technique for this mani. Simply add a drop of polish to a flat surface and mix until it gets stringy. Then, use a toothpick and carefully drag the polish strings to your nails, alternating colors until you get the desired look. Tip: Paint white glue around your nail for easy clean up later.