Painted nails are in! They have been and probably always will be too, so why not have some fun with what you put on them? Well-planned and manicured nails can really be a great finishing touch to your outfit. Nails that both stand out and blend in are always complimented. Why? Because everyone loves good-looking nails! Whether your nails are short or long, nail upkeep can be either fairly simple or more complex, and it’s totally up to you. The same applies to designs. One really good option, though it takes a bit more time (but it’s worth it!), is zebra stripes.

Zebra Strips in the Fashion Industry

If you’re looking to sport some type of animal print, zebra is the way to go. Leopard and cheetah print are the most common when it comes to talking about animals in fashion, and most seem to forget that zebra stripes are also an option. Therefore, you’ll be a bit more unique once you go with this design. Zebras themselves, are found in Africa, and often times their coat design is used to represent African fashion. They are interesting looking animals, and this is due to the black and white stripes that they have all over their bodies. The fascinating thing about the pattern of their stripes is that no one zebra has the same lay-out as another. Their stripes are as unique to them as our fingerprints are to us. Putting something similar on your nails will add a burst of boldness and a wild-like look.

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The Colors

Traditionally, the colors used to create the stripes are black and white, just like they are in real life. That being said however, there are many more possibilities when it comes to choosing what colors you want. Basically anything can go, but one of the colors generally always remains black to make it obvious that you are going for zebra stripes, instead of just some wavy lines.

Bright colors such as pink, teal, and green with make your nails stand out even more. Use a tan or lighter brown color to keep things earthy.

Putting on the Stripes

Now comes the more complicated part: actually doing the design and making it look good. The nice thing here is that there are several different options when is come to the pattern of the stripes. No matter what you choose, you will need a steady hand and a good nail art brush because a regular nail polish brush just won’t cut it for this.

You can make the stripes horizontal, vertical or even diagonal, whichever you think would be easiest for you, or whichever you think looks best. You can also do something different and make a pattern where the stripes are like “v”s, but horizontal and working from smaller to larger. The stripes are always elongated and slightly wavy. The best way to approach painting them on is to practice the design you want on a piece of paper before you try to do it on your nails. Practice makes perfect as they say! Start with your base/background color, let it dry, and then get those stripes on!

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  • As mentioned earlier, any color can be used for the base, which turns into the other stripes, so have fun with it! Use glitter colors or try painting each nail a different color for a standout look.
  • Another possibility is to do a rainbow background. It’s really colorful and really cool; a great option for summer.
  • French tips as zebra stripes on longer nails are a twist on the classic. Put a thin silver line underneath for an even more elegant look.
  • Have the zebra print on the nail and have a color for the tips. Another variation of French nails that really screams “look at me”!
  • Create a diagonal line across each nail and do the traditional black and white stripes on one side and a solid color on the other.
  • Use rhinestones to line tips or divides on the nails.
  • Only place the design on your ring fingers and have the rest be silver or some other color, such as pink.

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And then there’s the easy way out: going to the salon. This is pretty much a must if you have longer or fake nails. Nail specialists know what they are doing and should have no problem creating your zebra nail design just the way you want it. Before you go though, you should have a general idea of the design you want since there are a lot of options. Think about the color and the pattern. Use these images and copy them, or use them as inspiration for your own ideas.

Another way is to buy nail stickers. These will already have the design printed on them and all you have to do is stick or glue them on your nails. Piece of cake! There are also acrylic-like nails that you can glue on. These will give you temporary long nails with the design that you want.

Remember that your imagination is the limit. The more unique your idea, and a lot of the ones here, the more compliments you’ll get, but more importantly, you’ll love what you’re wearing. Zebra stripes can be used as an everyday and party look, and that’s one of their advantages: they’re super flexible. Have fun!



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