A shade of the dramatic, where different is all there is.

How To: Newspaper Nails

I’ve been dying to try the super popular “Newspaper Nails” but around our apartment newspapers are hard to come by.  I finally got my hands on a sheet of newspaper and just had to give it a try.

Start out by painting your nails a light colour (one that black ink will easily show up on).  I used White on White Nail Polish from China Glaze, but any pastel or light coloured polish will work.

White Nail Polish Swatch

Once completely dry, you will need some newspaper that you can tear up into small squares (you’ll need one for each nail).  Then, using a small container that you can create a small pool in, pour in your rubbing alcohol.  (I used a small plastic piece of packaging I found inside a box)

What you need for newspaper nails

One at a time, let your piece of newspaper soak in the alcohol for just a couple of seconds (until completely saturated), pull out, line up on your nail and press down on your nail, holding for about 5 seconds.  When you lift the paper off, the lettered print will be on your nails.  Easy as that!  Repeat for all your fingers, finish with a top coat and you are good to go!

How To Newspaper Nails

Newspaper Nails Tutorial

There are a number of video tutorials for this on youtube.com but here is the one I ended up following.

What I noticed after watching the video and trying them myself:

  • You need newspaper, in case you are like me and thought flyers might work because that is all you had….think again.  Save your time trying and steal one sheet of newspaper from that one person you know that still reads the paper everyday…
  • You really don’t need to let it set there for 15-20 seconds before pressing down on the paper.  Just line up the paper on your nail so the text will go on straight and press down for about 5 seconds, lift up and the lettering will come out plenty dark.
  • Definitely make sure you press down evenly to ensure the print covers the entire nail.  If not, the lettering will be noticeably lighter on certain areas of your nails.
  • Be careful applying your top coat, the print can smear and bleed easily (just like with Nail Marbling).  Make sure you put a thick enough coat on, so the dry brush isn’t pulling at the pattern.

Newspaper Nails Tutorial

I hope you enjoy giving this fun manicure a try.  It is really simple and takes only a few minutes once your nails are dry.



27 responses

  1. BelleMarie

    I really like this nail trend! I’m definitely gonna try it!

    March 12, 2012 at 9:27 pm

    • You definitely should! It is super simple and a lot of fun!

      March 12, 2012 at 9:32 pm

  2. I’ve been meaning to ask: where do you buy China Glaze nail polishes in Canada?

    March 12, 2012 at 9:51 pm

    • Sallys Beauty Supply Stores, there are a few in Toronto. You can buy a yearly membership for $5 and you will get a $5 cash coupon for use the next month. You don’t need a membership, but it gives you a discount in the store. Definitely worth having. I pretty much only purchase polishes and eyelashes there. You will have to check it out!

      March 12, 2012 at 11:04 pm

  3. What a fabulous idea! Will def give it a shot!

    March 13, 2012 at 4:53 am

  4. SO creative!! def have to try this! x


    March 13, 2012 at 8:37 pm

    • Have some fun with it – use the cartoons if you want!!

      March 13, 2012 at 9:32 pm

  5. This is very cool! Nice blog you have going 🙂 ! And thanks for liking!

    March 13, 2012 at 8:53 pm

  6. Big fan of the newspaper nails! Love how yours turned out!!


    March 13, 2012 at 9:15 pm

    • Yeah, I was impressed at how easy it was. I thought they turned out pretty well for a first try. Thanks for commenting!

      March 13, 2012 at 9:36 pm

  7. luv luv luv this idea!

    March 15, 2012 at 6:23 pm

    • It’s so easy too, I hope you give it a try!

      March 15, 2012 at 7:00 pm

      • I tried and it didnt work too well:-( it only showed up very faintly. I used essie polish as the base, could that be the problem???

        March 17, 2012 at 5:13 pm

        • In my very limited experience of this, I would say it more has to do with the paper you were using. Certain types didn’t transfer as well, I seemed to need actual gritty newspaper. Also..not sure what shade of Essie polish you used, but if it was a darker shade, that might contribute to the trouble you experienced.

          March 17, 2012 at 11:29 pm

        • I used a very light shade, so I don’t think thats the problem. Thanks for all the help!

          March 18, 2012 at 5:54 am

        • Good luck, let me know what happens. Remember, really inky newspaper and be sure to press down nice and hard!

          March 18, 2012 at 12:14 pm

  8. 🙂

    March 15, 2012 at 6:23 pm

  9. Kelsey

    I did this once (following the same tutorial you did!) but I used more of a light gray for my base color. They turned out pretty cool but I had some trouble with the smearing or removal of the lettering when I applied a top coat. I am now inspired to try it again! 🙂

    March 18, 2012 at 5:23 pm

    • Hey Kels! Mine did smear a bit too, but I just made sure I was heavy on the top coat, rather than pulling across the nail with a thin coat. I hope you try it again!

      March 18, 2012 at 6:23 pm

  10. Definitely cannot wait to try this one!

    March 20, 2012 at 10:51 pm

  11. I really love this effect!

    March 23, 2012 at 9:49 pm

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