Nail Art: Students polish up on intricate designs

Haley Bayne, Staff Writer

Nails by sophomore Vritti Kharbanda. Kharbanda often does her nails with themes.
Nails by sophomore Vritti Kharbanda. Kharbanda often does her nails with themes to match events in her daily life.

Ten fingers? Check. Nail polishes? Check. Design plan? Check. That is all that is needed to do nail art.

While supplies like a nail clipper and file, different sized brushes, dotting tools, glitter and studs are helpful to do nail designs, they aren’t a necessity, according to sophomore Ione Harding-Manson.

“You can do nail artwork with anything,” Harding-Manson said. “People do DIY’s with tools like pencils or bobby pins, but since I’ve been doing nail art for a while, I’ve accumulated lots of things. So, I have tiny brushes, dotting tools, but I still like toothpicks as a standby for tiny details.”

According to Harding-Manson, sophomores Sophie Strassman and Vritti Kharbanda and junior Isabelle Dost, the internet is one of the greatest sources for design inspiration.

Dost’s favorite website to find designs is Pinterest, and according to Strassman, there are a lot of other blogging sites that have innovative designs. Many also base their designs off of their personal experiences, however.

“I went to Swan Lake for Boston Ballet one time, so I did swan nails,” Kharbanda said. “If I’m doing something special, I’ll come up with an idea for it.”

Sometimes potential design ideas can come from unexpected things, according to Harding-Manson.

“In the middle of our physics final, I got the inspiration to do multiple choice nail art,” Harding-Manson said. “I was like, ‘that is so cool. I have such a great idea.”’

Dost, who is an avid skater, said that she first starting doing designs at the age of six. After going to her first skating competition and getting her nails done at a salon, she wanted to do her own.

Kharbanda learned to paint her own nails from a template in a book.

“My mom was always doing my nails when I was little,” Kharbanda said. “For my tenth birthday, I got a nail polish book, and it showed you how to do designs and stuff. I took off on my own with the designs.”

Dost said that she loves doing her own nails but there are some challenges, like time it takes to do a design, especially with the non-dominant hand. Sometimes Dost will still get her nails done at a nail salon for this reason.

Although some designs can take as little as 20 minutes, designs can also take up to two hours, depending on the difficulty, Harding-Manson said.

Harding-Manson does new designs every weekend, but Strassmann now only does her own nails for special occasions because of schoolwork and other commitments.

But the time commitment pays off according to Harding-Manson, who says that nail artwork is a great conversation starter in the high school.

“I feel like it’s really enriched some of my friendships,” Harding-Manson said. “Now we always have something to talk about. There are people who I probably wouldn’t have talked to as much if it wasn’t for the nails.”

According to Strassman, planning designs out ahead of time is key.

“Start on paper first,” Strassmann said. “ Use a lot of light and make sure you know what you’re doing before you start. You need a lot of focus.”

Haley Bayne can be contacted at [email protected]