Nail Art Tutorial: Skull Nails

Skull Nails Nail Art Tutorial & SwatchesThe next Hallowe’en nail art:Β Skull Nails! They’re really easy and fast to do. Plus you’ll only need two colours, so hopefully more of you will decide to replicate this!

Yes, the teeth are super long, but you can tweak this design as you see fit. You could make your skulls smile, you could add some stitches, or you can go the lazy route like me and just draw vertical lines.

Even though it’s not perfect, I think that this is a fun design you can do in a snap.

Also, with just a few easy modifications, I can see how you could turn this into ghost nail art. (I’ll probably try this out later, too!)

P.S. Later on, I may try to do skull nail art that looks more menacing like The Punisher. We’ll see!

Skull Nail Art Swatches

All swatches have:

Note: The sun wasn’t out when I wore this, so I just have natural light and flash photos for you.

Skull Nails Nail Art Tutorial & Swatches

Natural Light

Halloween Nail Art Skull Nails Tutorial

Natural Light

Halloween Skull Nail Art Tutorial

Natural Light

Nail Art Tutorial Skull Nails

Natural Light

Skull Nail Art Tutorial & Swatches

Natural Light

Hallowe'en Nail Art Tutorial Skull Nails


Skull Nail Tutorial & Swatch


Skull Nails Nail Art & Swatches


Halloween Nail Art Tutorial Skull Nails

Natural Light

Skull Nail Nail Art & Swatches


*~* Skull Nails Tutorial *~*

Skull Nails Nail Art How to

What I Used:

  1. OPI Natural Nail Base Coat
  2. Seche Vite Dry Fast Top Coat
  3. OPI Alpine Snow
  4. China Glaze Liquid Leather
  5. NYX Ink Nail Art in Black
  6. Daniel Stone Art Tool #5
  7. Daniel Stone Art Tool #1
  8. Piece of foil

Step 1: Apply a Base Coat

Step 2: Paint Your Nails White

I used OPI Alpine Snow. It took 3 coats to achieve the opacity you see in the below photo.

Wait 10-15 minutes to allow time for it to dry a bit before proceeding to the next step.

Skull Nails Nail Art Tutorial Step 1

Step 3: Add the Eye Sockets

I added a few drops of China Glaze Liquid Leather onto my piece of foil. Then I dipped my Daniel Stone Art Tool #5 into it and placed the eye sockets near the top of my nail.

Ideally, you’ll want to make the dots more like the ones on my index finger instead of more rounded like on my other fingers. I think when they’re more like ovals instead of circles, they look cooler for skulls.

Skull Nails Nail Art Tutorial Step 2

Step 4: Add the Nose

Dipping my Daniel Stone Art Tool #1 into the same bit of China Glaze Liquid Leather, I put 2 dots beneath the eyes to create an upside-down heart shape.

Skull Nails Nail Art Tutorial Step 3

Step 5: Add the Teeth

I used my NYX Ink Nail Art striper brush to draw vertical lines to represent the teeth. You could make them shorter or even add a curved line through the middle to make them look like they’re smiling if that looks better to you.

Wait about 10-15 minutes to allow for this to dry before continuing to the next step.

Skull Nails Nail Art Tutorial Step 4

Step 6: Add a Top Coat

See how simple that was? I bet that yours will turn out better than mine. I actually did this spontaneously while I was talking on the phone. If you put in more effort than I did, you could make it look more eerie and Hallowe’eny. πŸ™‚

Will you be wearing skulls on your nails? Do you own any skull necklaces? Have you thought about what you’re going to dress up as for Hallowe’en yet?


34 thoughts on “Nail Art Tutorial: Skull Nails

    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Alexis!

      YAY! Please take photos because I’d love to see how yours turn out…and how long/short you make the teeth. πŸ˜‰

  1. Carmela

    Skulls! On nails! Just two colors! I love it. This is going on my must try list. In fact, I think I’m going to do it today. (I need something fun to get me out of this gloomy funk the weather keeps putting me into) πŸ™‚

    PS. Punisher nails would be even better than skull nails. Or how about Ghost Rider nails? Glowing skulls, anyone? πŸ˜€
    Carmela recently posted: NYC In A New York Minute in Spring Street

    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Carmela!

      Yeah, the weather has been depressing: cold and spitting rain. Not a fan.

      Please be sure to take photos – I must see what your skull nails look like!

      Ooohh….glowing skulls!

  2. Vivian

    Awesome idea! I think if you’re super lazy, you could stop at step 2 (painting the eyes) and it’ll look like ghost nails. πŸ˜›

    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Vivian!

      Hehe, I actually almost did stop there! This whole design is ideal for the nailphile who wants fast Hallowe’en nail art.

    1. Mary Post author

      Hey lulu!

      I’m waiting! You definitely need to try this one. Super easy to do and they look menacing. Plus, who doesn’t want to take 10 skulls wherever you go? πŸ˜‰

  3. Marta

    Mary! These are spooooktacular!!!
    You know… Now I’m curious… Do you wear your nail art or do you showcase it, enjoy it at home and then keep swatching?
    Thank you for sharing this tutorial with us! I like how the little skulls already seem to be smiling at me… or maybe that is me projecting my smile at them? (what would Freud say?)
    Uhm… I’m not a fan of skulls and spooky stuff, but I wouldn’t mind having a posse of these skeletals on my nails! πŸ™‚
    ps. you know what would be really fun!?! To add a glow in the dark coat on top of all of these (or just a chosen one)… My wall mart had one more bottle of the glow-in-the-dark colour… hmmm πŸ™‚
    Marta recently posted: Black and White with bling… Concert time!

    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Marta!

      I wear my nail art out the vast majority of the time. Swatching a polish and then just removing it doesn’t make me happy because I feel that if I put in time and effort into a design (or even just painting my nails one colour), I should wear it for at least a day (but usually I wear it for longer, especially if it’s a colour I adore or a design that I’m really proud of).

      Oh, by the way, I was going to wear Chanel Peridot until it chipped, but…haha, it lasted for 5 days on me and was perfect still! However, I wanted to do another Hallowe’en nail-art design, so I removed it. I’m pretty sure Chanel is upset. πŸ˜› And now I’m wondering how long it would’ve lasted if I just kept wearing it. I’m so impressed by the formula because I had always heard about Chanel being chiptastic.

      Yes, if it glowed in the dark, that would be realllllly cool! I have a couple of glow-in-the-dark polishes (China Glaze and OPI) that I still haven’t tried. Hope I get around to them before Hallowe’en!

    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Kelly!

      Thank you so much. I’m glad to hear that you’ve been enjoying Swatch And Learn! πŸ™‚

      I think the biggest thing is just trying nail designs. πŸ™‚ Practice, practice, practice! And also, it’s important to remember that perfection isn’t the goal – happiness is! πŸ™‚ When I had that perspective, it made such a huge difference and I started trying more nail art. πŸ™‚

    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Pam!

      Thanks! πŸ™‚ Glad you liked the design enough to try it. If you take photos of your manicure, I’d love to see how it turns out.

    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Nic!

      Thank you so much for saying that! There are so many amazing Hallowe’en designs I want to do, but there just isn’t enough time…hehe!

      Yes, they are REALLLLY simple to do. You should definitely try them because the finished look is so dramatic.

  4. kyleigh

    i know im young but i love to do designs on my nails and this is PERFECT for halloween. mine were a bit messy but its because my white isnt very new…i love it and caint wait to show my friends at school. thank you for the idea.

    -kyleigh πŸ™‚

    1. Mary Post author

      Hey kyleigh!

      Nail art has no age limitations! As long as it makes you happy, go for it, I say!

      I’m so excited for you to show your friends, too. πŸ˜€

    1. Mary Post author

      Hey Christy!

      Thanks for letting me know about it. It makes me feel pretty sad. I love encouraging people to try different nail art and nail polishes, so this bugs me. It’s hard to see a lot of people’s hard work just stolen like that.


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