MANI MONDAY: Festival Tie Dye Smoosh Nail Art

by - July 13, 2020

For this week's Summer Lingo themed #CBBxManiMonday, I've got the word Festival and I pretty much immediately knew what I wanted to do with it... but I wasn't quite sure how to do it. Honestly, as I was sitting there thinking about how I was going to do Tie Dye nails, I considered hand painting (ugh) and water marbling (double ugh) and I scrolled and scrolled and scrolled through inspiration photos, but couldn't figure out how I wanted to do it. And then I was looking through old nail art that I'd done and realized that I already had the perfect technique in my arsenal to get exactly the look I wanted - the smoosh! 

Keep reading for more!

For this mani, I started by painting all of my nails with one coat of Color Club Totally Worth It. I always like to have a polish that I'm going to be using in my smoosh as my base just in case any parts of the decal end up a little bit sheer. You can also use a white base, but I'm... not a huge fan of a white base, if we're being honest.

To create the decals for this look, I like to sort of make a bullseye by applying dots of each polish color on top of each other on my nail art mat so that when I press my stamper into them to create the smoosh I get that sunburst effect that really gives it a look of being tie dyed. Honestly, this process can take a bit of time (and quite a bit of polish) because I'm pretty picky about which decals I'm going to use to apply to the nail. I also find that if I'm going for this look, it's important to use a pretty firm stamper, so I have one in particular that I only use for this technique, because it's quite firm but isn't actually tacky enough to use for regular stamping. 

Once I've got my decals and they've dried enough to peel them up off either the nail art mat or my stamper head, I use a cuticle tool and a pair of tweezers to lift them and flip them over so that they're face down on the stamper head. Don't let your decals dry too much or applying them to the nail can get a little bit janky - it will take a little bit of practice, but it's worth it. I also apply a coat of nail foil glue to my nails to give the decals something to stick to. You can totally use a coat of polish, a sticky base coat works best, but I find that the foil glue makes it easiest and I have it on hand, so I use it.

Once I have the decals transferred to my nails, I go in with my Silicone Tool* and I smooth out the decal to make sure that it's completely adhered and doesn't have any big creases in it. Again, this is something that might take a little bit of practice. To trim the excess, I use a metal cuticle tool with a small, sharp end to cut around the edges and then remove the excess with my tweezers before cleaning up and really melting the edges of the decal in using a clean up brush dipped in acetone. 

For this mani, I finished with first a layer of quick dry glossy top coat to seal in the design and then a layer of matte top coat to take down the shine. And voila!

All Products Used
Color Club Diggin' The Dancing Queen
Color Club Totally Worth It
Color Club Like A Boss
Color Club Factory Girl
Seche Vive Quick Dry Top Coat
Essie Matte About You Top Coat
Born Pretty Store Monocle Stamper Silicone Tool* (use affiliate code TRYSH for 10% off at
Born Pretty Store Cuticle Tool

TLDR: I used what I like to call the Sunburst Smoosh technique along with 4 pastel nail polishes to create this look. It can be a little bit tricky, but the results are worth it. If you're interested in watching how I did it, head over to @pblnails on Instagram to check out the full video tutorial (which is a little bit rushed for time limits, but hits all of the important notes.) Follow me there to check out all of my weekly nail art tutorial videos - I'm having so much fun with them that I know I'll be recording more!

I can't even underplay how obsessed I am with how this turned out. It's really exactly what I wanted when I was thinking about tie dye festival nails and I'm so, so glad that I thought to try out the smoosh technique because it gave the exact look that I wanted. I don't really crow about my own nail art very often (I am 100% my own worst critic and still think of myself as being sort of a novice) but I'm completely thrilled with this mani.

As always, be sure to head over to Cosmetic Proof and See The World In PINK to see what Jayne and Renee have on their nails this week!

Thanks for reading!!

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