Top DIY Nail Art Ideas and Products for 2018

Updated on February 10, 2018

Recently, I have had a passion for do-it-yourself nail art techniques. I'm not the only one; I think most other girls are obsessed, too. I am always looking for the latest ideas and products.

These days, there are so many products available on the market that it's easy to be confused over what to buy and what not to buy, and that applies to me, too. To tell the truth, I want to try everything. These nail art supplies look so amazing that it's hard for a girl to stop herself from buying them.

I have tried several DIY nail art products, so I thought I should list a few of my favorite ideas, as well as a few tutorials on how to use them. However, bear in mind that some of these were hot in 2017 and may well not be going anywhere in 2018.


In this article, I'm going to share tutorials on the following:

  1. Transfer foil
  2. Flocking velvet powder
  3. Dotting tool
  4. Striping tape
  5. Water slide decal

Transfer Foil

Let's start with metallic, glittery transfer foil. It is one of my favorites because it gives really amazing results. I've always tried to find the perfect metallic finish in nail paints but even the most expensive never comes up to my expectations. They often look glittery rather than metallic. However, transfer foils provide a perfect metallic and holographic finish every time, I simply love them!

Red Transfer Foil Nail Art with Stamping and Nail Strips
Red Transfer Foil Nail Art with Stamping and Nail Strips | Source
Blue Transfer Foil Nail Art with Polka Dots
Blue Transfer Foil Nail Art with Polka Dots | Source

1. Red Transfer Foil Nails

For this design, I applied the foil in a French manicure style. After that, I sealed the transfer foil with a layer of top coat. I added some petals using black nail polish and a stamping technique. Finally, a layer of quick dry top coat was added. Foils give a very glossy and perfect metallic finish to nails. These days, there are several highly glittery nail polishes available in the market, but foils have their own look.

I also used black and white nail polish strips on my ring finger nail. It gave a very beautiful contrasting look. A little practice can make you perfect with both transfer foils and stamping.

2. Blue Aqua Foil Nails

Black nail polish is the base for this design. Instead of applying foil glue on full nails, I applied dots of foil glue with a small size dotting tool. The result is that the foil transfers only on the dots or other areas where glue is applied. Finally, I applied a layer of quick dry top coat and it is done!

There are several more ways you can use foil glue. The foils are available in all sorts of colors like green, parrot green, red, hot pink, purple, pink, lilac, gold, silver, rainbow, orange, and peach, etc. with several patterns per design. There are even printed transfer foils, which give a really stunning look to your nails.


Do not apply top coat on fuzzy nails, or you will spoil the finish.

Flocking Velvet Nail Art

Another popular DIY nail art technique for 2018 will be fuzzy nails. They will be more popular in the fall and winter because of velvet protects against the chill of winter weather. So why not give your nails a touch of velvet in a manicure today? It is one of my favourite techniques as its results are completely different from other styles.

You can either apply the same color velvet powder on complete nails or create a design. Alternatively, how about a gradient of color? Everything will look awesome.

Dotting Tools

Polka dots and other circular patterns were trending in 2016 and they seem set to stay in 2018. You can create numerous patterns with a nail dotting tool, including animal print, dripping nail art, flowers, rainbows, bubbles, and a lot more. Just explore your imagination and create some designs to complete your nails.

Nail dotting tools come in 10 different sized appliers from the biggest to smallest. They make your work so much easier and give you perfect polka dots.

Animal Print Nail Art
Animal Print Nail Art | Source
Dripping Nail Art
Dripping Nail Art | Source
Rose & Petal Nails
Rose & Petal Nails | Source
Pink Heart Nails
Pink Heart Nails | Source

1. Animal Print Nails

Animal prints look quite tricky to make but they are not as difficult as they seem. I have a tip for making them easily. All you need is a dotting tool with a smaller dotting pen. Just make some semi-circles with your dotting pen and your animal print is ready. Do not restrict your imagination to real color animal prints, try different colors and make your own pattern.

I created an animal print on a rainbow base. I used five colors for it, including red, purple, blue, green, and yellow. Use black nail polish for these prints as they will show up well on other base colors.

2. Creamy Dripping Nails

This dripping nail art is quite easily created by using a dotting tool. First of all, apply a base coat, then make some dots with contrast nail polish color. Next, using the same dotting tool, stretch the dot into a drip shape. You can also use a sleek brush for converting dots to drips. Finally, apply the top coat to keep your nail art long-lasting, if required.

3. Rose & Petal Nails

Floral nail art is another easy design to create with a dotting tool. You just need to select some contrast nail polishes. as you can see in the photo, I have applied pink nail polish as the base, then used white and yellow nail polish for flowers. I have used the smallest point dotting tool for flowers, but you can make big flowers as well.

4. Pink Heart Nails

You can broaden your vision and create new designs. In this one, I have added some hearts and polka dots. You can easily make hearts with dotting tools. First of all, select a dotting tool size depending upon the required size of hearts you want to make. I have selected the smallest dotting tool because I want to make small hearts. Make three dots to make a triangle. Next join them to convert it into a heart. Repeat the same trick for all the hearts you want to make.

Striping Tape

Striping tape is another DIY nail art product that will most certainly be popular in 2018. You can create ombre, stripes, checks, and many other geometrical patterns on your nails with striping tape. It is now easily available in India as well as on eBay.

Purple Striping Tape Nails
Purple Striping Tape Nails | Source
Cross Striping Tape Nails
Cross Striping Tape Nails | Source

1. Purple Striping Tape Nails

Striping tape is the easiest way to create clean lines on your nails. If you want to apply two or more colors, striping tape can make your work easier and produce super neat results. In this design, I applied horizontal stripes on black nail polish. Instead of removing them, I kept them in place and applied a top coat for longevity.

2. Cross Striping Tape Nails

As I said previously, you can apply several nail polishes separated by clear lines using striping tape. I did the same thing in this nail art with an amazing result. For this, I applied striping tape in a cross, then applied four different colored nail polishes in the four different boxes. I removed the striping tape and added a stone in the middle. A layer of top coat and my nail art is ready.

Water Decal Nail Art

Water decals are another hot trend for nail art in 2017 and will continue to be in-trend for 2018 as well. Water decals are really easy to apply and give professional results. They come in several ranges including full nail decals, French manicure style, flowers, laces, golden and silver decals, and even glow-in-dark decals are available.

It is quite easy to apply water decals, and they look amazing and professional after application.

Yellow Flower Water Decals with French Manicure
Yellow Flower Water Decals with French Manicure | Source
Red Rose Water Decal Nails
Red Rose Water Decal Nails | Source
Full Nail Water Slide Decal Nail Art
Full Nail Water Slide Decal Nail Art | Source

1. Yellow Water Decals with French Manicure

In this nail art, I have used flower water decals on a French manicure. They are perfect to enhance the look of a French manicure. I used striping tape to create a diagonal design. I applied water decals on white or nude shades and finally, I added a quick dry top coat to complete the manicure.

2. Red Rose Nails

Flower water decals are perfect for those who love to make floral nail art but are not confident in their abilities. It is not easy to create a floral design on both hands. Floral water decals come in various colors and designs. So, friends, now you can apply nail art to match your outfit easily.

3. Full Nail Water Decals

Full nail water decals are another good option for those who want 5-minute manicures on both hands, and you don't even need to apply any nail paint. There are lots of designs and prints available in these and the application is easy and long lasting.

Which is your favorite DIY nail art technique?

See results

77 DIY Nail Art Tutorials in just 8 Minutes

DIY Nail Art Tutorial with Water Decal, Dotting Tool & Nail Guides

Final words...

These nail art products will rock the fashion trends in 2018. Today, I have shared only a few DIY nail art ideas and products including striping tape, dotting tool, transfer foil, flocking velvet powder and water slide decals.

I hope you like these ideas and I will come back soon with more DIY nail art products and techniques.

Questions & Answers

    © 2013 Jasmeet Kaur


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      • Lubowa profile image

        Lubowa 2 years ago from Uganda

        Thanks Jasmeetk for these decoration ideas.

        More nail design ideas at:

        Also a great nail stamping tutorial at:

      • Jasmeetk profile image

        Jasmeet Kaur 3 years ago from India

        @Maggie.L Thanks dear for your appreciation. I just love to do nail art. I have used velvet powder for white and black polka dot nail art :)

      • Maggie.L profile image

        Maggie.L 3 years ago from UK

        Fantastic nail art ideas here. I love the white and black polka dot design. This design would look great if you were dressed up as Cruella de Vil.

      • Jasmeetk profile image

        Jasmeet Kaur 4 years ago from India

        You can't imagine how much I am happy to read your words... Thank you so much :)

      • profile image

        swilliams 4 years ago

        I did know that you did nails! My daughter says that your nail art is the best she has ever seen and she will be visiting your site to view all of your amazing work. You are very blessed. Keep up the great work!

      • Jasmeetk profile image

        Jasmeet Kaur 4 years ago from India

        @swilliams... thank you so much for appreciation... I just love to do nail art.. and sharing with others comes with great happiness... :)

      • profile image

        swilliams 4 years ago

        This Article is So Beautiful! I love the nails! You are a great writer! Keep writing about what you know and you will soar to the top. Great job! Jasmeetk! I think you would make a great journalist too!

      • Jasmeetk profile image

        Jasmeet Kaur 4 years ago from India

        @Greenlily... thanks for your appreciation :)

      • Greenlily profile image

        Greenlily 4 years ago from Philippines

        Wow cool nail effects!