How to Swirl Nail Polish

If you want to take your nail art to a new level, the latest trend of swirled polish is as good as it gets, but how do you swirl nail polish? 

There are several designs that you can try out, and you should be as creative as you want with them. But, you do need to know how to do it well so that there are no mishaps or messy nails. 

We provide a step-by-step guide on how to swirl nail polish, as well as some of the best color combinations for you to try out. 

What This Article Covers:

How to Swirl Your Nail Polish

  1. Before you begin the process, make sure you have everything you will need within reach: the nail polish colors, a base coat, a topcoat, and toothpicks. 

    Open the nail polish bottles so that they are easy to access during the process. 

    how you can swirl your nail polish
  2. Start by applying a good clear base coat on your nails. This protects the nails from any staining from the color applied, and also fills out any ridges or bumps so that it creates a smooth surface for application. 

  3. Next, paint on the base color of your liking. If you want to do swirl effects with lighter colors, a darker base will work, or if you are swirling darker colors, a lighter, or nude base will work.

    If you don’t want a base color, and instead want a swirling effect throughout the nail, you can skip this step. 

  4. Once the base is dry, you will then start with the swirling. Put 1-2 drops of each of the colors of your choosing onto the nail. Use a toothpick to create a swirling effect of your liking, and run it in the direction that creates your desired pattern or design.

    Be careful not to put too much product on in this step, as it may be too thick and smudge after a while. You should rather start with less, and slowly add more polish as you need it. 

    the way you can swirl your nail polish
    Clean the nail polish brush of each bottle before putting it back in, as it might have come into contact with other colors. 

    If your polish seems thick, make sure you thin out the nail polish with a thinning lacquer so that it is easy to apply. 

  5. Leave the polish to dry for at least 15-20 minutes. Once dry, you can apply our topcoat which will give it a glossy finish, and protect the polish from chips or cracks over time. 

    It also prevents discoloration caused by external elements, which is how gel polish can change color

The Best Color Combinations 

Pink and Gold 

Pink and gold is a classic, feminine combination that will add a bit of glitz to any look. 

How to Swirl Your Nail Polish

You can paint a pink shade on your nails, and then swirl a gold, glittery shade on top. Alternatively, you can swirl both pink and gold on a clear base if you are feeling extra playful. 

How to Mix Your Nail Polish


If you want to make a bold, cheery statement then multi-colored swirls will do just that. 

You can pick any array of colors - various pastels, or a rainbow effect of bold colors. If you want it to be on the end, you can even go for neon shades

best way to swirl nail polish

This also solves the problem of how often you should change your nail polish to use each regularly - you’ll have every color on at the same time. 

Nude and Color

A trendy combination is painting your nails in a nude color that isn’t far off from your skin tone, and then adding a few delicate swirls on top. 

best way to swirl your nail polish

Generally a pink, blue, or lilac can look good with this style. 

How You Can Swirl Nail Polish

Clear and Pastel 

Similar to the nude and color combination, clear and pastel is a major trend that is popular with those who want something a little more understated. 

You can pick a single pastel color, or a few for a multi-color effect, and swirl it from the middle of the nail upwards, so the bottom is still clear. 

can you swirl nail polish


The swirl effect is a popular choice on nails, and there are endless designs that you can follow to keep it fresh and interesting. 

All you’ll need is the polish, toothpicks, and those important base and top coats to protect the polish, and your nails. If you need to thin out your polish, you may want a thinning lacquer nearby - this also makes the polish last longer in the bottle.

If you invest in a few good colors that mix and match well, you can play around with your assortment and have a new design every week, at a snap of your perfectly manicured fingers.

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