Mother-Daughter Bonding: Nail Art

Ashley B | October 30, 2012 | 15 Comments

One of my daughter’s favorite things to do is her finger- and toenails. Truth be told, I love it, too! It’s so fun to have glittery, pretty nails. When you live in Florida, like I do, and wear sandals 95 percent of the time, having pretty toes makes you feel put together. Painting and decorating nails is a great mom/daughter bonding activity. It’s inexpensive and looking for fun ideas is a fun activity in itself! Here are a few that we’ve done recently:

  • Water marbling. This one actually takes some time and practice, and it makes a bit of a mess, so it’s best to do it at an outside table and with plenty of nail polish remover handy. Paint your nails white, and put clear tape on your fingers around each nail to help reduce the cleanup later. Fill a small cup with room-temperature water (we used an old medicine cup), then drip in the colors that you want to use. If the water is the right temperature, it will spread out in concentric circles. Once you have several drops (we used four or five drops total, of two or three different colors), use a toothpick to swirl the colors around. Dip your finger in, let it sit for a few seconds, and use the toothpick to remove the excess polish from the surface of the water before removing your finger. It’s probably easiest to watch a YouTube tutorial to get a good idea of what you’ll be doing, and it does take some practice, but the results are amazing!
  • Decals and stickers. You can buy these at any pharmacy or discount store for a few dollars, or you can make your own! Apply a coat or two of whatever color polish that you want and wait for it to dry. Place the decals on your nails, then cover with a coat of clear polish. Voila! Make stripes by painting Scotch tape with a coat of polish. Let it dry, then use manicure scissors to cut into thin strips. Apply the nail art to your painted nails, then top with clear polish.
  • Glitter. The one thing that I don’t like about glittery nail polish is that it takes much longer to remove than regular nail polish. Still, the results are worth it! Glitter polish comes in all colors, as well as clear. One trend now is to paint all of your nails a solid color, then add glitter to just your thumb or just your ring finger (or both). If my daughter and I are doing our toes, we usually only add glitter to our big toes.
  • Fun designs. You can buy a package of nail polish liners for $5 or so. These come with thin brushes that make it possible to paint a variety of designs if you have a steady hand! If you don’t have a steady hand, you can also buy nail stencils, or they might even come with your liners. What we’ve done for Halloween is to paint our nails orange, then used a black liner to paint a spider on each big toe. We covered that with clear glitter, then a topcoat! Several people have stopped us to comment on our Halloween nails, and they’re usually surprised to hear that we didn’t pay for a pedicure, but did our nail art at home.

You can look on Pinterest or YouTube, or simply Google “do it yourself nail designs” for more ideas. Since nail polish only costs $2 or $3 (we don’t buy the expensive kind), this is an affordable activity and a fun weekly ritual to share with your daughter.

Comments (15)

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  1. bella says:

    I get the decals for my grand kids they love it and they love the glowing nail polish .Thank you

  2. Ana Cláudia says:

    i love paint my nails

  3. ANN*H says:

    All the girls and ladies love to do their nails . Its a big thing now a days with all the different designs and decals , glitter and all. I have always painted my nails since I was a teenager and never realized all these things you can do now with you nails. It is a bonding thing to do with your friends and daughters. Some of the polishes can be pricey but there are ways to do them cheaper , you just have to look around for them .What will they think of next LOL

  4. carol roberts says:

    yea bout the only thing my daughter is in to except her friends

  5. shirley zolenski says:

    I love nail time with my daughter. It’s fun to come up with designs.

  6. LadyVampire says:

    I never really thought about this being a bonding activity but I really enjoyed this post and have changed my mind. Its sometimes the simple things in life that bring people together. 🙂

  7. Saturday Sadie says:

    My teenaged daughter and I have been doing nails together for the last couple years. We share neat designs we’ve seen on the internet, and try to replicate them for each other. It really is a great mother-daughter activity.

  8. Luda says:

    Often my doughter sees my nails painted and asking if i can paint hers, these are some fun ideas.

  9. Rachael Porter says:

    Great post! My daughter and I love to do our nails also. I am hoping it will help her to not bite her fingernails. We have not tried he water marbling yet but I plan to.

  10. kelsey R says:

    ohh i like the water marbling idea! my little ones are still in diapers but I will totally do nail art to do mother daughter bonding!

  11. Julie B says:

    When she was younger, My daughter used to paint my nails. Now she is grown and I miss her painting my nails. She always made my nails look great.

  12. Jessica says:

    My daughter and I paint our nails together a lot, she loves it, as do I, I haven’t tried decals or anything yet as she just recently turned 2 lol.

  13. L. says:

    My niece and I love to look up new ideas for doing our nails. They don’t always turn out as good as we’d like but we have fun.

  14. Dorothy Boucher says:

    i love nail time with the girls, we get time to catch up on the little things n mommy gets to make sure everything is good ; )

  15. Chrystal D says:

    I love doing crazy & different things with my nails! You can come up with some wild things at times too.

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