Whether you live in a college dorm, a small apartment, in your childhood bedroom or you’re just starting out with nail art and don’t have a big budget, I’m going to give you the ultimate guide to nail art for a small space (with a bonus downloadable shopping list!).
First, we will look at what items you need (and which ones are versatile!). Then we will look at what you can do with those items!
Colors & Shades
To begin, let’s talk about colour. Yes, I have a big nail polish collection BUT I don’t believe you need one. In the past I have been floored by the amount of different looks you can create with only a couple of colours (awesome!!). I believe you need:
– a light shade
– a dark shade
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Black & white are mostly going to be your nail art/accent colours, but they’re versatile too – you can put white under a light shade to make it pop more (or maybe you bought one that’s a bit sheer/milky, don’t waste it) and the same with a dark shade over black. Both undertones can change how a shade looks.
A light shade and a dark shade because we are inherently conditioned by the world around us to change our tastes with a change of season 😉 Also, I think these should be creme colours and not special effect (glitter/flakies/etc) as cremes are way more versatile. Plus, you can transform creme polishes with glitter top coats, but it’s harder to “dress down” special effect polishes.
Creme polishes don’t have to be expensive (and they’re basics so they shouldn’t be!). My favourite cremes come from Colour By TBN, and they’re $2.95 each. I’d go to $6 maximum for a good creme polish.
I’ve paid way more for a creme polish (around $25!!) and I found a dupe of the exact same thing for less than a quarter of the price. Don’t make that mistake!
Just a note with white – it can be really difficult to apply and have it look good. Some recommendations of a good white is Bright Retreat by Emily De Molly.
Let’s talk about the basics – the must-haves. You absolutely need:
– base coat*
– top coat*
– clean up brush*
– cotton wool/pads or polish removal of choice (lint free are the best, but they can be expensive)
– cuticle oil* (my cuticle oil shop linked)
– glass nail file
(linked products are recommended by me)
– matte top coat*
– glitter top coat
– nail art stickers*
Now Make Some Nail Art!
With these products alone, you have exactly all you need to make loads of awesome nail art in your small space! Now that you’re set up, let’s do some nail art. I’m going to show you how to use 1 color in 3 ways, stay tuned! In the meantime, check out my Top 5 Nail Care & Hand Care Products of 2022.