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Cat-Eye Nails: Design Ideas | POPSUGAR Beauty

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  • Cat-eye nails are a popular manicure trend.
  • The nail design has a shimmery finish that resembles the eyes of a cat.
  • From black cat-eye nails to cat-eye nude nails, the nail-polish color options are endless.

Cat-eye nails are taking over Instagram once more. The popular manicure trend was big in the early 2010s, but it’s making a comeback. If you’re baffled by this trend, we don’t blame you. The process for how to do cat-eye nails involves some unique nail tools, such as metallic polish and a magnet. This creates an effect that resembles the distinctive finish of a cat’s eye with a line running down the center of the nail. The final result is a cross between a shimmer and soft velvet, creating a very special manicure.

Jenna Dewan, Sydney Sweeney, and Ashley Tisdale have all worn the nail design recently, further proving its popularity. Cat-eye nail designs come in all manner of colors: black, red, pink, purple, green, blue — the list goes on and on. Most nail salons should be able to give you a cat-eye design on your nails if you request it and show them a reference photo, but it’s also possible to do at home.

Cat-Eye Nails Tutorial:

Step 1 — Paint the Base of Your Nails: First, you’ll want to give yourself a basic manicure (cut, file, and buff your nails into the desired shape). To make the manicure look even more feline, you can file your nails into a thin almond shape to resemble claws. Then, paint your nails with the color of your choice.

Step 2 — Apply Your Magnetic Cat-Eye Polish: Next, you’ll need a special cat-eye nail polish designed specifically for this trend. It contains magnetic metallic pigments that are moved around with a magnet to create the unique finish. Some of these polishes contain color, eliminating your need for a base, while others are more of a topcoat.

Step 3 — Move the Magnet Over Your Nails: Next, you’ll need a cat-eye nails magnet. The key to making your nails look like cat eyes is to move the metallic pigments around by hovering a small magnet over your fingernails. Depending on how you point the magnet, the pattern of the metallic polish will change.

Step 4 — Apply a Topcoat: Once you’ve achieved your designed cat-eye pattern, seal in the polish with a topcoat. And you’re finished.

Check out some examples of cat-eye nails ahead to inspire your own manicure.

Additional reporting by Sarah Seigel


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