How to Turn Temporary Tattoos into Easy Nail Art

Remember temporary tattoos? They were one of the coolest things you could have as a kid, considering that as an eight-year-old you probably weren’t actually getting tatted up. Well, you don’t have to miss your favorite wash-away tattoos anymore! They now have a purpose in your adult life that might even be cooler than how you used them as a kid: as easy, beautiful pieces of nail art. (Also, no shame if temporary tattoos never left your life, despite your age.)

It stands to reason that if temporary tattoos can look awesome on the rest of your body, they can look even better on your nails! There’s a wide array of temporary tattoos out there, so you have hundreds of designs to chose from. And when you’re sick of that design? They’re easy to remove (hence the “temporary” bit) and replace with a gorgeous new design.

We love this hack because it takes something that seems so overly complicated and makes it brilliantly simple. Nail designs you see on Instagram and Pinterest can be jaw-dropping…but you know as you’re pinning the image that you will most likely never learn how to paint those cherry blossoms onto your nails successfully. That’s not to say that traditional nail design CAN’T be learned, but what lazy beauty lovers among us have time for that?

All in all, this is a quick, lovely, and simple design that can be accomplished with the most surprising supplies! So stock up on some tats and let’s get you started on your new favorite way to jazz up your simple manicure.

What do you think of this quick and easy nail art tip? Share your thoughts or your favorite nail hacks in the comments section below.

Temporary Tattoo Nail Art


  • Base coat
  • White nail polish
  • Temporary tattoos
  • Scissors
  • Wet cloth/paper towel/cotton pad
  • Fast drying top coat


  1. Start with a coat of base polish to protect your nail.
  2. Paint your nails white; this will provide a bright background for the tattoo that will make your design pop.
  3. Select the temporary tattoo you would like to use for your nail art. Cut the tattoo into small pieces, so that they can fit on your nail. Careful how you cut, you want to make sure you use the best pieces of the tattoo.
  4. Peel off the plastic on the tattoo and place the tattoo design-first onto your nail. Make sure the tattoo isn’t touching your cuticles or skin at all. If it hangs off the tip of your nail a bit, that’s okay.
  5. Dampen the back of the tattoo with a wet cloth, paper towel, or cotton pad. Gently press the tattoo with this moist cloth for 30 seconds.
  6. After 30 seconds, you can peel the paper off your nail, leaving only the lovely design behind.
  7. To get rid of any excess tattoo hanging off the tip of your nail, gently pull off or snip the excess away with a scissor.
  8. Repeat with as many of your nails as you would like for your desired look!