How to Make Nail Stencils

Written by ashley kurz
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How to Make Nail Stencils
Use your homemade stencils to create nail art like this. (photo nail image by Pershing from

With the right tools, you can create professional-quality nail art at home. One of the tools that nail technicians use is the nail stencil. These provide a way to apply perfect accent images on fingernails when using brushed polish or even airbrush application. The stencils themselves are nothing more than images cut from heavy paper, such as card stock.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Card stock
  • Craft knife

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  1. 1

    Draw the basic shape of each of your fingernails, as accurately sized as possible, onto a sheet of card stock. This will give you limits for the size of your stencil images and avoid making the images too large for your nails.

  2. 2

    Draw the images that you want to use for each nail onto the fingernail shapes you drew. Keep within the lines of the shape.

  3. 3

    Cut out the images from each nail shape with a craft knife. Use a new blade in your craft knife to make sure you get a clean, sharp edge.

  4. 4

    Cut out each individual nail stencil by cutting around the nail shapes you drew, which now have the stencil shapes cut out of them. Leave a bit of excess card stock at the tip of each nail stencil; this will serve as a handle while airbrushing or painting.

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