The holiday season can be more welcoming when our fashion fits our mood, readying us for the coming winter get-togethers with family and friends. Not only are our choices in clothes essential to keep us cozy while looking our best, but our nails can become a lovely highlight that lifts both our own and others’ spirits during the holiday season. Cute Christmas nails can make a child giggle, your mother smile, or remind you to look past the gloomy short days at the bigger picture: Enjoying time with those you love.
The next 77 photos are of Christmas nail designs meant to inspire your creativity and bring a reminder of holiday happiness to your very fingertips.
Can you name all of Santa’s eight reindeer? There’s Comet, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen, Dasher, Dancer, Vixen and Prancer. And the most famous of them all? Rudolf! Fashioning your nails with reindeer and snowflakes makes for both an elegant design mixed with the fun side of the season. Snowflake stickers will easily be found in your salon and copying the reindeer design above requires only a dotting tool (or toothpick) and a steady hand!
2. Winter Snow Festival
These patterns are quite popular during the holiday season, being found on all types of clothing such as jackets, sweaters, boots, and especially leggings. Flaunt some gorgeous, matching nails with these holiday patterns using neutral colors such as white and shades of grey, ensuring they’ll match many of your seasonal outfits.
3. Dash of Christmas Cheer
Christmas time is a wonderful season to tap into your creative side whether its making crafts, wrapping presents artistically, or finding inventive ways to paint your nails! Here, every nail is different and has its own personality. You can mix and match a majority of red, white, and green designs with any of your favorite holiday symbols.
4. Golden Glamor
For the inner goddess in us all, we can become the belle of the party using deep reds and golds to sport our favorite symbols of the season. Reindeer and heart stickers will be needed to grab this look, but the white lines can be added by hand and add a bit of dimension to the red nails. To make your gold nails look like gold foil, paint on an undercoat of silver before painting on the gold and sponge the tips to blend just a tad.
5. Carefully Wrapped Presents
One of the best parts about Christmas is giving gifts to the people you love and watching their faces light up with joy. If you’re a do-it-yourselfer, you’ll love the aspect of wrapping those gifts up too. You can sport your love for gift wrapping by wrapping your nails up in a cute design resembling presents!
6. Jolly Holly
Mixing and matching nail stickers can be fun, especially when you find two that go perfectly with one another. To add some texture or dimension to your stickers, dab on some nail polish or nail gel onto the top of the stickers where the holly berries lie. Don’t forget to add that top protective coat to ensure they don’t fall off.
7. Holiday Trees
Everyone is wearing reds, greens, and whites during the season. Why not try something different such as a bright blue to liven up your atmosphere? Painting your nails an nontraditional color during the holidays will easily catch your audience’s eyes, but you can also throw a cute design such as a golden tree onto one or two nails just to let people know you’re into celebrating the season too.
8. Hint of the Season
Some of us prefer the look of natural nails all year long – it’s just what we like. Instead of attempting to throw off our usual nail Feng-Shui with overly colored or decorated nails, we can choose one nail on each hand to sport a cute little Christmas tree. We’ll be keeping our natural look while sprucing it up just enough for the holidays.
9. Where’s Rudolf?
One reindeer with an over-sized red nose that matches the rest of our nails. The deep red of Rudolf’s nose is a perfect to color for our other nails if we’re only looking to decorate one with detailed art. You can either switch the colors of your nails to white, grey, or green – or you can change the reindeer to a snowman or snowflake.
10. The Symbols of Christmastime
We suggest you go to professionals if you’re trying to fashion this look on your nails! This intricately designed nail art is perfect for the holiday season and will give your kids, nieces, or nephews something to smile about when they see your fingertips. You’ll want to have extra-long nails for these designs so that every detail can fit.
11. A Little Christmas Dazzle
Much different from design #10, these are much more elegant and simple to achieve – no nail salon needed. All you’ll need is a simple white or cream polish, green polish, and some cute miniature nail gems or sparkling nail polish. Here, you can see the sparkles were even spaced and placed on the tree, so you may need a dotting tool or toothpick to help you in achieving this.
12. Santa & His Antarctic Helper
If you love how cute Santa Claus can be, you’ll find that creating him on your nails isn’t as tough as you may think. But if you don’t like the look of elves, you can replace them with cute little penguins! Granted, penguins live on the South Pole, not the North, so keep that in mind if any little kids ask!
13. Holiday Dimensions
Instead of fashioning your own personalized nails on your real nails, you can always do it on a set of fake nails before gluing them on. This will make it easier for you to draw on your right-hand’s nail art (if you’re right handed – and vice versa if you’re left-handed). Doing it this way leaves you free to get more detailed than usual, and it’ll be okay if you mess up on a nail. Simple grab another to decorate!
14. Bowed & Gemmed
Elegant, cute, perfectly manicured – what isn’t to love about this design? You have gems and bows, yet the nail art is simple enough for anyone to achieve. You can even switch gem colors, placing a red gem on a green bow and green gem on a red. It’s completely up to you!
15. A Penguin’s Paradise
Penguins are cute and easy to draw on our fingertips. While painting every nail a penguin might end up looking a little tacky, choosing just one or two nails on each hand to sport the look of a penguin is absolutely cute, and you can change the penguin to any color you choose. Here, the penguin is blue to match the falling snow patterns on all the other nails.
16. Snow Drift
Classic and chic, this nail pattern is lovely and sophisticated for those of us that want to keep it looking a tad more professional. The inverted nail on the ring finger truly makes the nail art pop out. If your favorite part of the season is the lovely snowfall, nail art such as this is perfect for you.
17. Glorious Snowflakes
Another way to sport the snowflake look, but with the traditional season’s color of red. This design doesn’t have the simple dots coordinating with the snowflakes on all the other fingers, but is still a great way to show off your love of winter.
18. Holiday Mischief
Kids will love nails done at home like these, and little girls will want you to show them how to do it. If you’ve decided to create your own Santa, Frosty, Rudolf, gingerbread man, and Christmas lights on your real fingernails, don’t forget to take a Q-tip and soak it in nail polish remover for just a couple seconds. Take that Q-tip and run it along your cuticles and around the edges of your nails to remove any unwanted polish from your skin.
19. Xmas Ornaments
Are you nail gem crazy? Do you like the look of them or just feel like going crazy in your nail art this season? Fashioning your nails to look like they’re segments of Christmas trees wrapped up in lights is a must then – and you can make one look like a present by attaching a miniature bow to your nail! Be careful it doesn’t get caught in anything!
20. Favorites of the Holidays
Here is another wonderful example of mixed and matched designs perfect for each nail to have its own personality. Longer nails will be needed for all the details of this type of nail art to pop out, but the end result is sure to grab attention from family and friends.
21. Red & Green Christmas Tree Dream
Here we have great nail art perfect for the do-it-yourselfer. We suggest you paint the trees on the fake nails of your choosing before gluing them on, along with the small gold gems that ornament to tops of the trees.
22. Yummy Treats
Cinnamon rolls, peppermint desserts, decorations on foods done in holly… Food is an important part of the holidays, and you can show it by creating nail art of your favorite desserts. Here we have cinnamon rolls with frosting oozing over the sides and holly berries decorating their tops.
23. Falling Snows
Yet another lovely example of a snowfall design. What’s great about snowflake nail art is knowing that every flake that falls from the sky is different; none are ever the same. So have fun designing what your larger flakes look like! They can be as intricate or simple as you like.
24. Holly Glitter
You can take a simple nail stickers, such as the holly ones seen here, and add your own flavor to them by adding glitter nail polish beneath the design. You’ll want to put on your base coat, your glitter coat, a top coat, then your stickers, then a second and final top coat. You don’t want the texture of the glitter to interfere with placing the stickers on evenly.
25. Seasonal Favorites
Is that a gingerbread man or football on the thumb? Either way, both work! If your family gets into the football season that plays during the holiday season, then you can include a few footballs in your nail designs. The guys will surely appreciate it.
26. Snowman’s Delight
Only have time to get detailed on one or two nails? That’s okay – go crazy with snowmen or snowflakes on those two fingers and paint the rest red. Or green. Or white. Having only a few nails decorated will have your audience peering down at your hands, wanting to take a closer look.
27. Decorative Cheer
Think outside of the box this season. Instead of painting every finger a single snowman, paint several one! Instead of Santa’s face, paint his silhouette as he flies through the sky! Don’t forget the bells that are symbolic of the season, they’re beautiful to listen to and make great nail art.
28. Matching Sweater
We’ve all seen them: Those odd and sometimes ugly sweaters that people like to wear during the holiday season. What gives? But some of us have found ways to sport them while looking both cozy and classy. You can emphasize this by creating nail art that matches your sweater’s designs.
31. Peppermint Parade
Reds and white go lovely together for the holiday season and will match all of those wonderful winter outfits you’ve collected over the years perfectly. For each nail, you can do a different design using only white and red – and add a little reindeer in there for fun.
32. Winter Penguin Pals
You don’t have to paint your entire nail to create these little fellas. Notice how they don’t quite meet the cuticle – a great design for any of us that have problems trying to create an even line at the edges of our nails!
33. Simple Shimmer
You can make your nails look like little Christmas ornaments simply by painting them either deep reds or greens, painting that one silver nail (the ring finger), and adding a two top coats to give it that extra shimmer and glossy look.
34. Patterns of the Holidays
These are stickers you can find in your beauty store during the holiday season or on Ebay/Amazon. They look marvelous on a coat of deep red polish, and professional once the top coat is put on.
35. Dreaming of a White Christmas
Simple white can be spruced up to look like its perfect for the holiday season. All you need is some glitter polish and voila! For this look, you’ll need to let your nails grow out or buy some fake ones, shaping them into almonds (the stiletto look would work great here too).
36. Reindeers at Play
Reindeers, snowflakes, and traditional seasonal patterns. You’d be amazed at just how great grey looks with other Christmas colors. It gives off a cozy sensation, as if you’re wearing wool on your fingertips.
37. Winter Wonderland Art
This nail art isn’t for the faint of heart. Yes, they can be done at home. No, they’re not easy to create. You’ll need to have a steady hand and a truly artistic eye to fashion nails that look like miniature oil paintings done by Monet! If you’re feeling ambitious, try doing designs like these on clear/white fake nails first to practice.
38. Peppermint Swirl
Red can be popular throughout the year, especially for those of us that want to feel either sexy or powerful. You can take your normal red nails and make them seemingly perfect for the holidays simply by making one nail on each hand have a swirl of white atop it like a little piece of peppermint candy.
39. Plaid Presents
Plaid is one of the most popularized seasonal patterns you’ll see – it’s classic, and trust me – it won’t go away! Plaid is easy to create on your nails, and you can add some intriguing nail gems to single nail to have the design pop out.
40. Holiday Greens
Not every Christmas nail art design has to be shiny or glittery. A flat matte color like the green seen here just barely has glitter to add depth, and the same green is used to fashion a Christmas tree with a backdrop of light green. A truly unique design and easy to create.
42. Silver Glitter Backdrop
Glitter and red. They go great together. If you prefer short nails, the design above is a lovely choice for you, requiring little room to create on each nail.
43. Reindeer Magic
Here is a simpler version of reindeer that require little skill to create. Unlike the other reindeer, these guys have glittery red noses! Have fun with the design – make them look at each other or in another direction!
44. Rudolf Movie Love
Remember the old Claymation movies we used to watch as kids? How about the old Rudolf Claymation? It’s many children’s’ favorite, and fashioning each nail as a character from the movie is going to get you compliments from both children and adults.
46. Poinsettia Pretty
Wow! Poinsettia’s are a popular flower during the Christmas season, and are often given as presents with golden glitter sprayed on them. They’re lovely as decorations in your house and on your nails!
If you’ve got a great eye for detail, especially at miniature sizes such as seen here in this piece of nail art, then rock on. You deserve a gold star! You can find designs like this in sticker-form, but for some, creating these designs are a wonderful challenge that won’t go unnoticed.
48. Frozen & Frosty
Some of us prefer the simplistic designs of a winter wonderland rather than the colorful contrasts of reds, greens, and whites. You can choose to create your own snowflakes after giving yourself a French manicure using glittered tips (instead of plain white) or you can find snowflake stickers if you’re not up to making them yourself.
49. Pale Blue & Powder Snow
Not many designs for the holidays use pale blue in their designs, but when they do, they have a charming wintery effect that warms the heart and reminds us to stay warm indoors.
50. Drifting Snow
These almost look like they’ve been given a French manicure, but the lines aren’t straight! Uneven tips can look like drifted snow – all you have to do is add dots for falling snow and perhaps a cute little snowman!
52. Forest of Décor
Create a little forest of trees on your fingers! You can decorate each tree differently or the same, depending on the style you’re after or if you’re just feeling like you’re in an artistic mood. The thumb has little presents beneath the tree!
53. Collection of Favorites
What symbols are your favorite during the holidays? Take those symbols and flaunt them on your fingers, you’re going to have people peering at your nails and telling you which one is their personal favorite!
56. Peppermint Schnapps
More peppermint colors, done with a snowman, Rudolf, and a gingerbread man. This is another great example of putting your favorite holiday symbols on your fingertips so you can show them off and have people tell you which one is their favorite.
57. Buckled & Glittered
Adding glitter to the ends of your red fingertips is a classic holiday design, but adding Santa’s buckle to a couple of fingertips is becoming quite trendy! And the lines are both easy and fast to create with a steady hand.
58. Happy Hats
These colorfully vivid hats make a cute addition to your holiday season. If you’re going to do them yourself on fake nails, create them before gluing them on so you can easily create the thick lines.
59. Elf Madness
That’s right, the “Elf” movie! Who doesn’t love Will Ferrell’s comedy? These green nails are awesome for the holidays and adding the word “Elf” will let everyone know your love for the Christmas comedy. Don’t be afraid to try to create the elf legs seen on the ring finger, it’s easier than you think if you’ve got a dotting tool!
60. Grinch’s Tree
These trees are a reminder of the old Christmas classic “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas” – the cartoon version! Remember when he had to cut out his Santa suit and stitch it together? The colors and stitching resemblance looks familiar…
61. Jolly Red & Rudolf
So perfect for Christmas, these nails are eye-catching and great for family get-togethers and parties. They’re fun and stylish, and Rudolf will be loved by anyone lucky enough to catch a glimpse of him.
62. Santa’s Favorite Reindeer
A lovely way to differentiate Rudolf from the other eight reindeer! That hint of red on his nose truly makes this design pop out, and both children and adults will love trying to name off the other eight reindeer once they’ve seen your nails.
63. Colored Glitz
Tired of all the reds, greens, and whites? Spruce things up with different colors. Honestly, anything with glitter is perfect for the season. You can combine blues and greens, purples and red, or triads of colors and place stickers atop like seen above.
64. Perfect Packages
Gift-wrapped and ready to shine! Make each nail a little present to yourself. Play with the angles you give the “ribbons” and add colored gems and a top coat to keep them shiny and stable.
65. Red French Manicure
French manicures are still in for the season, but coloring them up with red is a lovely way to make them seemingly perfect for the holidays. Add a bit of silver glitter and a few gems or stickers and you’ll have a perfect Christmas manicure in time.
66. Peppermint Sticks
Peppermint is the candy of the season, and if it’s your favorite flavor in coffees, teas, or just as a simple candy cane, the design can look both fun and sophisticated on the tips of your fingers.
67. Christmas Night
Here it looks as if the wearer has dipped her fingertips into Christmas cheer, with red, green, and silver sparkles at the tips of her manicured nails. Adding a little Santa Claus to one finger will make your design more festive.
69. Santa Totem
This design is truly outside of the box! You can paint each nail to be a segment of Santa Claus and show off your design like seen above. Don’t be afraid to try an elf, reindeer, snowman, or any of your other favorite Christmas characters!
70. Build An Xmas Buddy
Another awesome example of nails that form a person when placed together! If you don’t want to shape Santa or your favorite character together using all four nails like in design 69, you can do it using your ring finger and thumb like shown here. The rest of your nails can have a much simpler design, making your job easier.
72. Mismatch Beauty
We don’t normally think of orange when we think of Christmas, but combined with white and gold glitter, this design can match a range of outfits and is well suited for the season!
73. Holiday Fun Package
Finally, a design with a Christmas stocking! This is a wonderful example of giving each nail its own personality, with miniature reminders of all the fun aspects the Christmas season brings us.
74. Christmas Combo
You can carefully design each nail on a piece of paper or on a fake nail before placing the final piece of art on your real nail. Here, the reindeer, snowman, and Christmas tree are simplified but easily recognizable.
75. Hidden Hat
If you love wearing red nails during the season but want to add a little detail to spruce up your normal look, you can give your fingertip a hat to stay warm!
76. Snowmen & Holiday Trees
The candy cane design is a great filler when you only want to place an intricate design on one or two nails on each hand. Remember, you can use nail polish remover soaked on a Q-tip or brush to rid your fingers of any excess polish that surrounds the nail on your skin and cuticles.
77. Retro Christmas