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Upgraded French Manicure Tutorial

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french manicureIn 1978 Jeff Pink, the founder of ORLY invented and patented the Original French Manicure. For a long time this look was one of the most advanced things you could do for your nails. The arrival of new colours on the market in the last decade and the recent nail art trend have changed perception of a creative manicure dramatically. However, French manicure is still here! Now it is one of the most popular bridal manicures and the choice of those who want to try something different on their nails but not too extravagant. The huge variety of nail polish shades and finishes currently on the market mean there are even more options for experimenting with the classic French look.

Today’s Upgraded French Manicure incorporates both the Original French manicure and art deco half moon nails, also known as a reverse French manicure. We opted for contrasting shades of dark plum and bright peach instead of traditional nude and white tipped french nails. To take things even further, we did a reverse colour combination on alternating fingers.

The nail art tutorial for this design can be used as a guide on how to do a french manicure at home and also how to do a reverse french manicure. Plus, we’ll show you two ways of doing it depending on what nail art tools you have at home and how steady your hand is.


french manicure tutorial

1. Paint index and ring finger in peach shade and the rest in dark plum.

Now, there are two ways of doing it:

1st Method: using French manicure stripes.

2. Wait till the first layer touch dry and apply french manicure stripes as pictured.

3. Paint the tips and at the nail bed, accurately remove the stripes. Done!

2nd Method: using detailing nail art brush*.

4. Paint a thin line on the tip using nail polish brush. It was quite convenient to do with Sally Hansen Complete manicure brishes as they are flat and allow to draw a perfect line without any troubles.

5. With a nail art brush, paint the half moon details by first outlining the curve and then filling it in with the polish.

6. Wait a few minutes for the nail polish to dry (clean up around cuticles while waiting) and paint a layer or two of quick drying top coat.

* You can use a soft eyeliner brush instead of a nail art brush.

beautiful french manicurereverse french manicure designs 1

 Used: Essie Grow Stronger base, Sally Hansen Complete Manicure 380 Peach of Cake, 640 Plum Luck, Diamond Flash top coat and French Manicure stencils.

How do you like this Upgraded French Manicure look? Have you tried experimenting with the French nails look?

As always, whether you will use this Upgraded French Manicure tutorial or invent your own French nails design, make sure you show us!  Tweet or Instagram us a photo with a tag #sonailicious, we’d LOVE to see it!

Related posts:
6 Fabulous French Manicure Designs to Try

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  • Mina October 31, 2013, 6:40 am

    These are just beautiful Maria! I guess more than the design itself, which is gorgeous on its own, the colours you chose make for the perfect combination and really make the design stand out! Loved i!!!! :D

    • Maria @SoNailicious November 7, 2013, 1:07 am

      Thank you so much Mina! It’s unusual colours, I don’t even know why I decided to put them together. The final result looks nice, so I guess it worked this time ;)

  • hechi October 31, 2013, 7:12 am

    I love the colour combination!! I just did something very similar!! :)


  • Manisha October 31, 2013, 4:46 pm

    Nice mani. Thanks for tutorial. Loved the colors used in the mani

  • Chandelle November 1, 2013, 11:13 am

    Very beautiful and I love those polishes together :)
    How far we have come! I remember back in highschool when my Mum got me a french manicure set for my birthday! The white got gluggy so fast and the manicures looked awful haha!

    • Maria @SoNailicious November 7, 2013, 1:10 am

      I know! I remember painting my nails with water colours and markers because I didn’t like the pink pearlscent polishes. All that you could find in the shops 20 years ago. As a teenager I wasn’t allowed to wear red.

  • Khurram Urdu February 25, 2014, 3:57 am

    Wow great tutorial. I run beauty saloon here in Pak so that way it is great for me to read you articles.

  • Talkerblogger April 14, 2014, 2:19 pm

    Maria, either you pick the right colors or they just seem right once you pick em!! Great and unusual combination :) looks great. !
    Talkerblogger recently posted…Dior Vernis Nail Lacquer 657 TrafalgarMy Profile

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