Animal Print Is the New Nail Trend of the Season — Here’s How to Do It Yourself

It’s official, animal print is back! Personally, I’m so glad to see these funky prints making their return, as they are either subtle or ultra-creative. Inspiration for these prints seem to come from nostalgia, with Y2K influences like Eastenders’ very own Kat Slater.

Giving us the lowdown on how animal print has infiltrated the nail space, celebrity manicurist and Mylee ambassador Tinu Bello tells PS UK: “Animal print is nostalgic of the 90s and 00s so it’s a really fun way for people to relive their old favourites. It also appeals to a lot of people as really it can be classed as a neutral, and is super easy to wear, while giving a bit of creative flair. Specifically, leopard is the trend for SS24 across fashion, shoes, and accessories, so it’s no surprise that it has also translated to nail art. From the catwalk to the salon, this print is everywhere right now, and it’s only increasing in popularity.”

The best bit about animal print nails is that you can experiment with the nail trend from the comfort of your own home. All you need are some nail art brushes, a dotting tool and your chosen print in mind. “For leopard print, use a contrasting colour to your base, like black or deep brown for the leopard spots. Dip your dotting tool into the polish and create irregular, rounded shapes on your nails. Make sure to make them different sizes and vary the spacing between them.”

“To create tiger stripes, use a thin nail art brush dipped in black or brown polish. Create curved lines across your nails to mimic the stripes of a tiger. If zebra is your thing, use a fine nail art brush dipped in black polish. Create thin, horizontal stripes across your nails.”

“Snake print requires irregular, squiggly lines using an ultra fine nail art brush dipped in black or brown polish,” she adds. “When you’re happy with the basic design of your animal print, it’s time to add details. Use a lighter shade of your base colour to add highlights or accents to the print. You could also try a metallic to give it a 3D effect. Seal it with your top coat and you’re good to go.”

To elevate your animal print nail look, try combining the trend with some colour. Bello suggests neutral tones, but brighter colours can look just as good. “Earthy tones, tan, beige, browns and blacks work for all prints. Fuchsia pink, neon green, electric blue, highlighter yellow, and vibrant orange can work well as accents. For leopard and tiger prints, a bold orange or show stopping yellow work well against a neutral base. Blue, purple and green can look stunning on a snake design, neon green and hot pink on zebra prints are a favourite too.”

So with your nail appointment booking, or your DIY nail kit at the ready, here are some inspiration snaps for your animal print nail makeover.

Lauren Gordon is the editorial coordinator at PS UK, where she creates lifestyle and identity content. Lauren has a degree in journalism from University of the Arts London and previously worked as a showbiz and TV reporter at The Mirror US. Lauren specialises in pop culture, hair and beauty, focusing on trends, sharing in-depth tutorials, and highlighting hidden gems in the beauty industry.

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