Waterfall nail art is a simple but beautiful design. To create waterfall nails, a nail striper or thin paint brush is used to paint several different colors of streaks from the base of the nail toward the tip. Or, in the case of reverse waterfall nails, from the tip of the nail toward the base. Instead of running the stripe along the entire length of the nail, the stripes only extend about halfway up or down the nail. The lengths of the stripes can be uniform or staggered to create different effects. The brush is lifted slightly at the ends of the brush strokes to create a tapered effect. The end result is a fingernail that looks like polish is cascading down the nail, much like a waterfall cascades over a cliff.
Waterfall nail art can be created with any colors you like. Cool colors, particularly blue, make amazing waterfall nail art designs, since they are more closely associated with actual waterfalls. Silver or glitter polish can also be added to give a sparkling water effect. Don’t feel like you have to use cool colors to create waterfall nails, though. You can use any colors that your heart desires!
Not sure where to get started with your waterfall nail art? Here are 15 amazing examples of waterfall nails to give you some inspiration…
1. Teal and Silver Waterfall Nails
A beautiful teal base color with silver, white, white and blue streaks resemble a real waterfall.
2. Shades of Blue Waterfall Nail Art
Varying shades of blue can be used to create a striking look.
3. Pastel Gradient Waterfall Nails
Pretty pastel colors make beautiful gradient nails. A few extra brush strokes, though, turns pretty paste gradients into some stunning nail art!
4. Colorful Waterfall on Nude Nails
Turn drab nude nails into fab waterfail nail art! Just add lots of colorful stripes.
5. Pretty White Waterfall Nails
A white base color really makes these blue and purple waterfall nails pop!
6. Firey Orange Waterfall Nail Art
Create a fire look with an orange base color for your waterfall nail art. Add streaks of black, silver, blue, or any other colors you’d like.
7. Pink and Silver Waterfall Nails
A light pink polish makes an excellent base color for silver, pink, and orange waterfall nail art.
8. Rainbow Waterfall Nail Art
With 20 different shades of nail polish, this rainbow waterfall nail art design may not be for everyone. But, the fina result sure is amazing!
9. Harvest Colors Waterfall Nail Art
The colors in these waterfall nails are autumn colors. This would be a perfect mani for fall holidays, like Halloween or Thanksgiving.
10. Silver and Purple Waterfall Nails
Simple, yet pretty! A dark plum purple is the base for thse simple silver waterfall nails.
11. White Reverse Waterfall Nails
Instead of starting at the base of the nail and striping toward the tip, you can also reverse the pattern. It give a slightly different—but just as pretty—effect.
12. Neon Reverse Waterfall Nail Art
The neon colors in this reverse waterfall nail art are a great look for spring and summer.
13. Glitter Reverse Waterfall Nails
Glitter polish adds lots of shine and sparkle to this reverse waterfall mani!
14. Reverse Purple Waterfall Mani
Shades of purple make for a perfectly pretty waterfall mani. The glitter polish gives it just enough sparkle too!
15. Mixed Waterfall Nail Art Heart Design
Mix regular waterfall nail art with reverse waterfall nail art to create a fun design, like these red and gold heart nails. Perfect for Valentine’s Day!
Do play around with different colors for your waterfall nail art. The different color combinations for waterfall nails is limitless, and you might be surprised at some of the colors that work well together! This technique does require something of a steady hand, but not too steady of a hand. You don’t want your stripes too uniform or perfect. That’s part of the beauty of waterfall nail art!