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20 Stunning and Easy Valentine’s Day Nail Art Ideas

Wear your heart on your nails with these romantic manicures.

Photo: @pipjolley

Photo: Instagram/@pipjolley

Got lots of red nail polish leftover from the holiday season? Good news: You can use it for Valentine’s Day nail art. The color is classic year-round, of course, but with love in the air and hearts serving as the main symbol of the mushiest day of the year, red has become all but the official color of Valentine’s Day and, thus, a solid choice for celebrating via manicure.

Though, when we say it’s a solid choice, that doesn’t mean you have to stick to a solid shade when you do your nails for Valentine’s Day. Work that red into heart shapes or French tips; and while you’re at it, incorporate a few other romance-related colors, like pinks and even black. There are so many pretty and clever nail-art ideas out there — some easy enough to DIY, and others you’ll probably want to take to your favorite nail professional (if you feel comfortable to do so).

We’ve rounded up some of the sweetest Valentine’s Day manicure ideas out there to inspire you to wear your heart on your nails. Keep scrolling to fall in love with some adorable nail art.

Metallic Hearts

Photo: @nailsbycaroline

Photo: Instagram/@nailsbycaroline

“Inspired by minimalism and neutral tones, the contrast between white and gold always catches my eye and makes for the perfect pairing on nails, too,” says nail artist Caroline Chambers, who created this charming pastel-pink and metallic design. “It can be recreated at home using a nude base, white polish, gold chrome pigment, and a liner nail art brush.”

Horror Meets Love

Photo: @cierrasnails

Photo: Instagram/@cierrasnails

This Scream-movie-meets-Valentine’s-Day manicure will take some time, patience, and again — a steady hand. Advice from the creator? “For anyone doing their nails at home, I would suggest investing in a packet of different-sized dotting tools and a liner brush,” says Smith. “I got mine from Amazon, and it’s been super helpful.”

Heart Hole-Punch Nail Art

Photo: @hilarydawnherrera

Photo: Instagram/@hilarydawnherrera

How cool is this Valentine’s Day take on hole-punch nail art? Simply get yourself a pair of acrylics and use a hand puncher (like this one) to create the heart-shaped cut-out, which is where your gold ring will go. Then paint your acrylics a pastel or bubblegum pink hue and secure your nail ring in place.

This set from Amazon has a bunch of cool silver and gold options to choose from.

Pastel Hearts

Photo: @hilarydawnherrera

Photo: Instagram/@hilarydawnherrera

“When doing heart nail art, start with two side-by-side dots, then pull each to a meeting point below with a small detail brush,” says nail artist Hilary Herrera. “It’s that easy.”

Another tip from Herrera? “Play with your background colors to contrast your art and make it pop, or do what we did here and leave the natural nail shining through on the nails with the art. We call this negative-space nail art.”

Red, Pink, and Purple Flame Tips

Photo: @sweetandsavynails

Photo: Instagram/@sweetandsavynails

Walker created this fiery look by first painting the nails with a light peachy-pink base; then she hand-drew the flames using a fine-line brush and flamingo-pink, red, and lavender polishes. Definitely don’t forget to use a topcoat when doing this look at home, as it’ll give the nails a glossy finish, and, of course, help prevent smudging.

Rose Quartz

Photo: @cgoldnglam

Photo: Instagram/@cgoldnglam

“These rose quartz nails are about self-care and self-love,” says Ellis of the inspiration for this manicure. For a look like this, which is extremely detailed, you can’t go wrong with press-ons, like these from Etsy, which have a very similar vibe with the gold foil.

Red-and-White Heart Tips

Photo: @thenailroomchats

Photo: Instagram/@thenailroomchats

This red and white design was also done by Lucy, and it’s actually incredibly easy to DIY. Simply use a heart-shaped stencil (this set from Amazon has several options to choose from) and your favorite red nail polish for the tips; then add a thin white line for extra definition.

Glitter Inverted Vs

Photo: @thenailroomchats

Photo: Instagram/@thenailroomchats

“Inverted Vs are a classic nail art design from the 1920s,” says Lucy of @thenailroomchats — aka the creator of this sparkly scarlet-colored manicure. “We added a red glitter from Dnd for more of a modern glitzy look.”

To ensure you get super-clean lines, use some tape or a stencil and a fine-line brush for the edges of your Vs.


Photo: @purposeandpassionblog

Photo: Instagram/@purposeandpassionblog

Can’t decide between classic symbols of Valentine’s Day? This adorable set features several themes — a creamy, pale pink on two nails, as well as hearts in a soft red shade and a black “XO” on a white base.

Photo: @ricekittynails

Photo: Instagram/ @ricekittynails

Afraid you can’t hand-draw a perfect little heart? No problem. This manicure by nail artist Diana Nguyen proves you can get creative with stickers. She used a beautiful, shimmery, pale-pink base — Bio Seaweed Gel’s Pearl — and topped a few fingers off with different-sized red, metallic heart stickers. Just seal it with a clear top coat to help it last well past the holiday.

A Hint of Blue

Photo: @chalkboardnails

Photo: Instagram/@chalkboardnails

Mix up the traditional reds and pinks of the holiday with a splash of another shade. Nail artist Sarah Thompson kept it classic on these shorter nails with a pink base and little red hearts, but she threw in a little light blue at the cuticles for a cute color-blocked effect.

Candy Hearts

Photo: @devsnails

Photo: Instagram/@devsnails

Real candy hearts have been having a rough couple of years. Due to bankruptcy filings, there was a shortage in 2019, and this year, more than half of the candies on shelves will be blank. But your nail art tribute to them can say anything you want them to say. Nail artist Devan Asbury went with the classic messages for her pretty, pastel interpretation, but there are no limits (except for space, of course).

Red and Pink Ombré

Photo: @sweetandsavynails

Photo: Instagram/@sweetandsavynails

Walker isn’t opposed to slightly simpler Valentine’s Day nail ideas. Here, she gave a client a gorgeous gradient manicure, starting red-hot at the cuticles and fading to a bright pink on the ends of the long, oval-shaped nails.

A Little Love for Baby Yoda

Photo: sweetandsavvynails

Photo: Instagram/@sweetandsavvynails

Brooklyn-based nail artist Savannah Walker of Manifest Nail took her heart-shaped tips a step further — OK, a lot of steps further — with this elaborate ode to her favorite little dude, The Child. In addition to swirly red hearts with gold-beaded borders, she painted a perfect portrait of Baby Yoda (holding a Valentine, because why not?) on her thumb.

Photo: @thenailartbabe

Photo: Instagram/@thenailartbabe

Who says your heart-shaped tips have to be red? Nail artist Courtney Wetmore did a glossy version of this twist on the French manicure with one red-tipped hand, using Essie’s shade Hiking Heels, and one black-tipped hand, using Essie’sclassic black Licorice.

Photo: @thestylishbat

Photo: Instagram/@thestylishbat

Pointy nails practically beg for this clever idea. Instead of a simple red twist on a French manicure, use the shape of the tips to create hearts. Nail artist Alyson Rodriguez Orenstein used CND Shellac in Be Demurefor the pink base and the same formula in Rose Brocade for the red hearts.

Photo: @manimaker.nikoletaszalak

Photo: Instagram/@manimaker.nikoletaszalak

Although red or pink nails may be predictable on Valentine’s Day, nail artist Nikoleta Szalak used some unexpected combinations to create a super-cute manicure. She used Indigo Nails’ Mineral Base in Natural for the pale, matte pink nails, and the same brand’s gel polish in the shade Fireman for the glossy red nails, as well as the adorable little hearts at the cuticles.

Red Jelly Glitter

Photo: @rachel.messick

Photo: Instagram/@rachel.messick

For low-maintenance nail-art lovers, it doesn’t get better than this fuss-free red manicure. “There’s truly no place like home when it comes to these ruby slipper-inspired sparklers,” says Messick of this Wizard of Oz-themed nail look. “Apply a vibrant red polish first and then follow with two coats of a multidimensional red glitter polish.” She recommends Morgan Taylor’s Nail Lacquer in the shade Rare As Rubies.

Rainbow Heart Tips

Photo: @pipjolley

Photo: Instagram/@pipjolley

Just because it’s Valentine’s Day doesn’t mean you need to stick to red and pink nail colors only. This whimsical design by Lucy of The Nail Room Chats & Co. in London can be easily recreated at home using colors you already have in your collection. Start by painting your nails with a nude or ivory polish, and then create your heart tips using a stencil (like this one) for guidance. Finish by applying a shiny topcoat to add shine and prevent chipping.

Pink Ombré Hearts

Photo: @Katebeaute

Photo: Instagram/@Katebeaute

This mesmerizing ombré design was completely hand-painted by Smith — no big deal. “I started off with two dots, then, using a nail-art brush, dragged the bottom of the dots into a triangle shape, giving way to the perfect heart every single time,” she explains of her technique. “For this design, it’s essential to use colors that are very pigmented.” For the darkest pink shade, might we suggest Essie’s Swing of Things? And for the base shade, we’d recommend Zoya’s Brighton, a beautiful pinky nude hue with microparticles of glitter.

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