What is nail contouring?
While traditional contouring allows you to highlight or conceal certain facial features, the goal of nail contouring is to create the illusion that your nails are longer than they actually are, by applying a wide line of nail polish in the centre of the nail.
Who should use it?
Nail contouring is perfect for anyone who wants their nails to look longer. It’s also super easy to do, and it’s a fun change from your everyday nail art. For a more subtle look, select a single colour, or use two for vibrant, original results.
How it works
The basic idea is to attract the eye to the middle of the nail. You can do so by leaving the sides of the nails colour-free; if using two nail polish colours, then use the darker in the centre.
Nail contouring is super easy to do! Using the colour of your choice, apply a wide line of polish in the centre of your nail, from the cuticle to the tip. Allow the first coat to dry, then apply a second coat. Finish with a clear top coat. And there you have it!
Apply two coats of nail polish in a nude shade, and let them dry completely. Next, follow the basic technique, using a darker polish in the colour of your choice.
Tip: For best results, choose a nail polish that is close to your natural skin tone as your base colour.
Burst of colour technique
Instead of starting with a neutral colour, go for a more vibrant shade. With a second complementary or contrasting colour, follow the basic technique, making sure to use a darker colour in the centre of the nail. Before applying your top coat, you can also decorate the darker polish with a nail art pen in a contrasting colour or a nail tool to create an elegant, fun or geometric effect.
Tip: Match different nail polish finishes to create depth. For example, choose a polish with a creamy finish as your base, and apply a pearly polish to the centre of the nail, or vice versa.
Pssst! Need inspiration for the holidays? Here are some nail contouring ideas:
- A classic reinterpreted – A pale colour as the base + a dark colour applied to the centre of the nail starting about a millimetre from the half-moon.
- The chic duo – Burgundy on the sides + black in the centre of the nail.
- The glamour duo – Golden on the sides + emerald in the centre of the nail.
- Bling – A single line of silver polish in the centre of the nail.