8 Nail Stickers for a Super-Fast DIY Manicure
Nail stickers that provide a salon-quality mani in minutes? Yes, please!
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If you love a gorgeous manicure but don’t love the wait time or skill required for polish, nail stickers are the answer. Whether you’re into modern, playful, graphic, winter-themed, glitter or gels, fabulous nails don’t get any easier than with nail stickers. Unlike press-on nails, which require glue, nail stickers are peel-and-stick, giving an instant gorgeous manicure, and even complicated nail art.
Nail stickers have come a long way, and include not just small stickers, but wraps and strips as well, which cover the whole nail, and are made with lacquer or gel nail polish, so they look no different from a nail polish manicure.
But how easy are they, really? “Nail stickers are the easiest DIY nail art,” says Christina Kao, cofounder of Le Mini Macaron. “Like any at-home mani, however, follow a few tips for success,” Kao adds. Clean the nails by removing any trace of oil with rubbing alcohol. Then, place the stickers on the nails—needlenose tweezers work best for the small ones. Lastly, cover with a clear top coat to seal.
Even if you just want a classic mani in on-trend spring nail colors, stickers are the easiest way to get the best-looking mani. Scroll down to see our favorite nail stickers that will change everything you thought you knew about manicures.
Dashing Diva After Glow Gloss Ultra Shine Gel Palette
Dashing Diva elevates nail stickers in two ways: they not only come with extra design accents in case you want to accentuate a mani but they also last like real gels—minus the hassle and potential harm to nails. Having road-tested Dashing Diva nail strips myself, they amazingly stayed nearly perfect for two weeks.
One Ulta reviewer, Kerry H. raves: “This color would absolutely look great on all skin tones. Very feminine, and the color is long-lasting and durable. Lasted for weeks, even through housework and gardening.” After cutting the gels to fit, don’t forget to file the nails properly to ensure the stickers don’t peel off.
Deco Miami Nail Art Sticker Sheet
Deco Miami creator Julianna Dahbura added nail art stickers to her polish line in October 2020 as a fun DIY pandemic product, and now the super cute stickers have become a popular focus of the brand. They’re available in multiple themes, including this novelty design.
“They last so much longer than other brands I’ve tried, and the designs are adorable. They’re also super easy to apply; I saw some reviews saying they’re hard to get off the sheet, but if you bend it, they pop right up to grab them with tweezers,” shares one reviewer, J’Lee. If you’re new to nail art, look at these easy nail art designs for more inspiration.
Dashing Diva Euphoria Dream Gel Nail Strips
These salon-type gel nails are not only a gorgeous palette of color and design, but they also have the same high shine and glossy look and feel of a professional gel manicure. Plus, expect them to last for up to two weeks, chip-free. This extra-large set contains 32 gel nail strips to customize the nails from any combination of lavender and silver base nails with blue and starry accents.
The brand has a large array of combinations, so you’ll always find on-trend choices. Need help choosing? Take a peek at some of our favorite gel polishes for inspiration.
For wraps and strips, choose the right size for each finger. Smooth out any air bubbles, trim any excess off the top and file the nail. Gel nail stickers create the look of a super polished gel mani without the hassle and require no extra drying techniques.
Olive & June Cabana Love Nail Art Stickers
You don’t have to wear your heart on your sleeve when you wear your mood on your nails. This company features adorable themed nail stickers that come hand-screened with ink that doesn’t blur or fade. With flamingos, pineapples, palm trees, a pair of sunglasses and more, this cheeky set will transport you to a tropical paradise. They also cover up chipped nails in a pinch. Don’t forget to protect these small stickers and give your nails a gorgeous shine with a good top coat.
Nail stickers can last up to 10 days, depending on the brand and wear and tear. Many reviewers report even longer wear, especially for glitters. And with so many designs available, they’re an excellent option for special occasions, like New Year’s and Valentine’s Day.
Color Street “Tokyo Lights” Nail Polish Strips
This fun set features glam colors and holographic glitter that will add a sparkle to whatever you’re doing, and because it’s made with 100% nail polish cleverly translated to sticker strips, nobody will be the wiser. You’ll love Color Street’s vast collection of nail strips if you get bored of nail color easily.
One happy reviewer remarked, “Easiest time I’ve ever had doing my nails. Saved me an expensive trip to the nail salon and I get lots of compliments on them.”
SoGloss Solid Silver Nail Wraps
If you like your nails a bit extra, you will love the slick silver look of these beauties. More of a warm skin tone? The gold stickers are just as stunning. Remember to add a coat of clear polish to keep the nail stickers from peeling off. We love the fact that the bold metallic looks just as amazing on short nails and stunning as a pedicure. This seller has over 112,000 sales on Etsy, and tons of other designs to check out.
Plus, when used properly, nail stickers aren’t harmful at all. “Damage comes from improper removal,” says celebrity nail artist Brittney Boyce, founder of Nails of LA. “If you rip them off, you may actually peel off the top layer of the nail bed.”
To remove nail stickers safely, soak a cotton pad in nail polish remover and press it to the nails one at a time for a few seconds to allow the remover to soak into the polish. Then remove it like a regular manicure, gently rubbing the soaked cotton pad on each nail.
ManiMe Galactic Charm
This reviewer sums up our feelings: “I love how simple yet pretty this design is. It’s a modern take on the French manicure and looks so good. Everyone thinks I get my nails done at the salon and can’t believe it when I say they are stick-on. Super easy to apply.”
Tough Girls Nail Polish Strips
If you avoid getting your nails done because you spend the day typing on a keyboard or working with hand tools, check these out. Tough Girls nail wraps are brighter, thicker and tougher than most other brands, so you don’t have to worry about destroying a manicure right away. They’re also perfect for those with soft or peeling nails since they seem to temporarily plump up the nail bed.
I have tried other brands of nail polish stickers like Incoco and Sally, but Tough Girls are my hands-down favorite. They are the longest-lasting and easiest to apply of any other brand. I have stage IV cancer so my nails are not very strong, but these stay on very well and stop my nails from peeling and breaking, and the fun styles bring me happiness. I would highly recommend Tough Girls.
About the experts
- Brittney Boyce: Brittney Boyce is a celebrity manicurist and founder of Nails of LA. With over a decade in the nail industry, Boyce has amassed a portfolio with a breadth of expertise that extends from luxury fashion campaigns and covers of beauty magazines to the hands of celebrity clientele.
- Christina Kao: Christina Kao is the co-founder of Le Mini Macaron whose goal is that being able to DIY your manicure helps you celebrate your self-confidence and lets your creativity shine.
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