25 Mermaid Nails Designs to Make a Big Splash

Updated on November 8, 2023
Tatiana Cooper By Tatiana Cooper
Tatiana Cooper

Expert writer, copywriter, and well-versed beauty and wellness enthusiast.

Table Of Contents

    Mermaid NailsPIN

    25 Mermaid Nails Designs to Make a Big Splash

    You have docked at the right spot if you’re looking for an “I washed up like this” manicure. We have the info on all things mermaid for your next claws. If you don’t find some inspiration here for your mermaid nails, your only remaining option might be to go for a swim to find a real mermaid and ask them how they do your manicure. But, hopefully, it doesn’t come to that, and you will find something you like here.

    How to do Mermaid Nails Video

    Follow our step-by-step tutorial to achieve these adorable mermaid nails with cute little detailed scales.

    What Are Mermaid Nails?

    Mermaid nails are exactly what you would expect, pretty, colorful, and most importantly, iridescent. The addition of iridescent glitter will alter the color of the nail, shifting it towards a more holographic color experience. Your nails will be shimmery, glittery, and show-stopping.

    Apply iridescent or holographic pigment onto your nails doesn’t have to be tricky, and we can show you how.

    How To Get Iridescent Mermaid Nails Directions
    Step 1 Do a regular manicure with the mermaid color of your choice. Don’t forget a top coat.
    Step 2 Once your manicure has dried, buff the iridescent pigment powder onto the nails one at a time. There are silicon buffing tools for this step, but we find the fingers work best.
    Step 3 Quickly add a layer of top coat onto the nail once you are done buffing it in.
    Step 4 Repeat the process twice on each nail until you get the perfect shine and pigment.

    Mermaid Nail Polish

    Suppose you are interested in mermaid nails but want to avoid using glitter (which we all know from experience can be very messy). In that case, you can get nail polish with iridescent glitter particles already incorporated into it. Mermaid nail polish can also be a glittery nail polish or aquamarine and turquoise if glitter and sparkle aren’t your things.

    So many different mermaid characters have surfaced in Disney and other movies. If none of the mermaid nail ideas below speak to you, we recommend checking out your favorite mermaid character’s nail polish. We don’t doubt that they are beautiful and very mermaid themed.

    Mermaid Color Nails

    There isn’t really one color that screams mermaid nails.

    Instead, we think a few colors are reminiscent of a mermaid, such as those outlined in the table below.

    Mermaid Nails Colors Example Characteristics
    • Pale blue and green or blue with a bit of yellow
    • Light hint of spring green and in between cyan and green
    • Similar to turquoise but lighter and less vibrant
    • Mix of red and blue
    • We suggest an iridescent color
    • Combination of yellows and blues
    • Mix of white and reds.
    • We suggest a coral pink shade as it matches a mermaid’s vibe best.

    Adding chrome or iridescent glitter on these nails will bring that mermaid and underwater look to life.

    Glitter Mermaid Nails

    When we think of mermaids, we often think of the ocean or their scaly iridescent tails. Therefore, if you want glitter mermaid nails, we recommend pulling out green or blue glitter polish. Layering on the two polishes will create this stunning ombre-layered glitter effect perfectly reminiscent of a mermaid and all its beauty.

    Mermaid Nails Coffin

    These nails in the coffin shape are the perfect mermaid nails. The stunning purple and green chrome coloring and the long body of the nails are reminiscent of a mermaid’s tale.

    Acrylic Mermaid Nails

    You can choose many shapes of acrylic nails for your mermaid nails.

    Doing your nails or getting them done at the salon on acrylic nails is excellent because it:

    1. Adds more surface area
    2. Adds length
    3. Adds more room for creativity

    These acrylic mermaid nails are a great example because the extra length and surface area of the added fake acrylic nails allows more room for creativity, prompting the addition of fun designs and gemstones.

    Mermaid Ombre Nails

    These pink and blue mermaid ombre nails are absolutely mermazing! The iridescent coloring is one thing, but by adding an ombre effect, you really get the whole fish-out-of-water experience. Plus, you can never go wrong with a fresh set of pink ombre nails.

    Simple Mermaid Nails

    If you are really into the whole mermaid nails thing but not the time and effort it takes, there are simple mermaid nail alternatives for you. We suggest choosing one of the mermaid-Esque nail colors and adding iridescent glitter on top. Or, to make it even simpler, add no glitter at all. Try jelly nails with mermaid colors if you want to go even simpler and more subdued.

    Holographic Mermaid Nails

    Holographic mermaid nails are similar to iridescent glitter; however, the former has a harsher color transition. These nails are fantastic and capture the look of a mermaid’s appearance and the sun on the water.

    Mermaid Inspired Nails

    Any mermaid-inspired nails make us happy, especially these ones. Until Urcela grants you your mermaid tail, nails like these will have to do.

    Get the most out of feeling aquatic by adding the following:

    • Glitter
    • Nail art objects
    • Fish scale designs

    Mermaid Chrome Nails

    Mermaid chrome nails are similar to holographic nails, except chrome will give you more shine. Applying chrome pigment is just as easy as applying iridescent pigment and is done the same way. The nice thing about chrome is that it’s buildable and can be as pigmented as you like.

    Mermaid Cotton Candy Nails

    If you’re feeling a little crabby, these mermaid cotton candy nails will 100% cheer you up. These nails are a combination of cotton candy colors, similar to pastel nails, and the addition of iridescent pigment on top gives them that mermaid look.

    Mermaid Unicorn Nails

    Mermaid and unicorn nails are very similar. We suggest choosing a stiletto shape acrylic nail to give it that unicorn horn appearance. Otherwise, it’s open seas with color combinations as long as there mertastic.

    Mermaid Ocean Nails

    If you are searching for inspiration to go for mermaid ocean nails, we suggest going for blues or greens. Those colors aren’t only reminiscent of sea creatures like mermaids but also of the ocean. The world is your oyster regarding nail designs for these nails. But you can add scales and glitter like these ones here.

    Mermaid Tail Nails

    These nails are simply the cutest. Sometimes mermaid nails can be overwhelming with all the shiny and iridescent coloring. However, these mermaid tail nails look simple yet intricate. When replicating these nails, there are likely nail stickers that look just like these nail tails that you can use.

    Dark Mermaid Nails

    If you were to believe in mermaids, you wouldn’t think they are beautiful, loving creatures of the sea. Instead, you believe in Sirens, scary humanoid mermaid creatures with sharp teeth for killing humans. These dark mermaid nails will be your vibe if that’s the case.

    Mermaid Dip Nails

    Dip nails are another form of nail polish, except the color comes in the form of a powder, and they are sealed in with a clear top coat and LED lights. Once you have chosen your dip color, you can make it even more mermaid-esque by adding small and large glitter and ombre effects to give it that little mermaid look.

    Mermaid Splash Nails

    If you love the movie Splash with Tom Hanks and Daryl Hannah as much as we do, these nails will be right up your alley. Replicate Madison, the mermaid character’s manicure, with these natural chrome nails. We’d definitely have these nails under the sea if we were a mermaid.

    Mermaid Purple Nails

    These purple nails are all about the drama. Mixing and matching all the different design choices that makeup mermaid nails are perfect for getting that mermaid look. Purple is also a universal mermaid color, so you can’t go wrong with it however you incorporate it into your manicure.

    Mermaid Turquoise Nails

    If you wish upon a starfish for the perfect mermaid nails, we have just granted your wish – you’re welcome. The turquoise color screams mermaid, and these mermaid turquoise nails are perfect. Leaving them turquoise is excellent, but adding glitter and iridescent coloring will take them to the next level.

    Mermaid Stiletto Nails

    These claws are stunning and glittery and, dare we say it, very mermaidy. We love the lack of detail on these nails, but the coloring paired with the stiletto acrylics gives it all the right amounts of drama in all the right ways.

    Mermaid Aquarium Nails

    Mermaid Aquarium Nails Instagram@only.fabsPIN

    If you love classic manicures but want to add elements of ocean life to your nails, we suggest taking inspiration from these French tip aquarium nails.

    Many moving parts go into these mermaid aquarium nails, such as:

    1. Acrylic nails
    2. Nude nail polish color
    3. Two glitter polishes
    4. A light blue polish (to paint on the starfish)
    5. A nail art brush
    6. Clamshell stones

    Summer Mermaid Nails

    Many summer nails are worth trying; however, our favorite has to be these summer mermaid nails. When we think of summer colors, we think light and bright. These mermaid nails are precisely that. Adding glitter, ombre effects, pearls, gems, and shell patterns gives it the mermaid feel we are searching for.

    Cute Mermaid Nails

    When we picture cute nails, we think about smiley face nails or cute animals drawn onto your claws. When we think about cute mermaid nails, we think of little shell and scale drawings.

    Zohna Tip

    Opt for nail stickers if you aren't the best at drawing nail art to get your perfect nail design.

    White Mermaid Nails

    When we think of mermaid nails, we don’t automatically picture white, but who said it couldn’t be done? These white mermaid nails have the perfect lowkey coloring without being too basic. Adding colored chrome pigment over the white gives it that pretty mermaid-like appearance we know and love.

    Mermaid Teal Nails

    Teal is another one of those versatile mermaid colors. Try giving these nails with teal glitter a shot. You’ll likely look and feel just like a mermaid underwater whenever you use your hands. If you don’t like the shape of these nails, try swamping them out for Ballerina Nails, you can never go wrong with those.

    Easy Mermaid Nails

    The easiest way to get mermaid’s nails is to use a nail polish color with shimmer and iridescent pigments. This way, you can encapsulate the mermaid feeling without putting in too much time and effort.

    Mermaid Nails Tutorial

    If you want a mermaid nail like this image, we can help you get them at home almost effortlessly. Here is an easy-to-follow step-by-step mermaid nail tutorial. First, you have to gather all your materials.

    What you’ll need for mermaid’s nails:

    • Three different nail polish colors
    • Makeup sponge
    • Nylon netting
    • Top coat

    Step #1

    Do a regular manicure with the lightest of your nail polish colors. We suggest using a light blue color.

    Step #2

    Once the regular manicure has dried, it’s time to lay the nylon netting over your nails. You can likely get nylon netting at any fabric store near you. Tape down the net to your fingers so it won’t move.

    Step #3

    Paint your remaining two colors onto the makeup sponge horizontally, one above the other. Then before the paint dries, pat the sponge on top of the nails and the netting.

    Zohna Tip

    You can also follow this tutorial if you want ombre nails; eliminate the use of nylon netting.

    Step #4

    After doing the third step at least twice on each nail, you can remove the netting, and you should see a scale-like pattern forming on the nails. Add a top coat to seal it all in, and you are finished.


    • How To Paint Mermaid Nails

      There are many different ways to achieve mermaid nails. You can do chrome nails, glitter nails, ombre nails, or so many others. Depending on the kind of manicure you are going for, there will be different ways to paint your nails. However, if you want a chrome or iridescent-looking manicure, all it takes is a little added powdered pigment buffed into the nail; it’s that simple.

    Sea Ya Later!

    Whale, whale, whale, what do we have here? Hopefully, a now well-educated mermaid nail lover who may even believe in mermaids now if they didn’t before. Even if you aren’t trying to go for a mermaid manicure, there is tons of excellent inspiration for your next claws.