Nail Art Step by Step: Minnie Mouse design

Follow Marie-Louise Coster's Disney-inspired nail art step-by-step and create this super-cute Minnie Mouse design. 

You will need:
  • 0.5mm (or finer) pencil
  • Practice nail tips
  • Gel paints. You could also use gel polish but will need to apply multiple layers and cure between each to achieve the same level of pigment.
  • A ‘00' and ‘0' brush
  • Dotting tool
  • Matte or Gloss topcoat
Marie-Louise Coster Minnie Mouse Nail ArtStep 1
Buff over the entire nail to remove any shine. If you are doing this on a client's natural nail, apply two coats of topcoat and them remove the shine. 

Once the shine is removed, sketch your picture. Do this either by measuring and scaling down, or draw it freehand. I opted for a freehand design for this; scaling down an image is particularly good for drawing portraits but for cartoon characters there are less features and therefore easier to complete.

Marie-Louise Coster Minnie Mouse Nail ArtStep 2
Once you are happy with your sketch, you can start colouring it in. I began with the face and completed the black parts – the outer part of the face, the nose and the eyes.

Remember you are better to apply several thin coats of gel paint and curing effectively than one thick coat which won't cure and will pucker. Then cure. 

Marie-Louise Coster Minnie Mouse Nail ArtStep 3
Next colour in the fleshier colour of the face. I mixed several colours together to create the colour I wanted. I recommend having a kitchen/bathroom tile to hand to use as a mixing palette.

Again, cure.

Marie-Louise Coster Minnie Mouse Nail ArtStep 4
Now colour in the red parts of the design, including the bow and the part of the dress you can see. Again, to create good coverage and depth of colour, apply thin coats of gel paint and cure between each.

Marie-Louise Coster Minnie Mouse Nail ArtStep 5
Once you are happy with the coverage and the precision of each section, you can now start adding the details.

Firstly, add the white dots. This will really start to bring Minnie to life! Use a dotting tool for this, or a ‘00' brush.

Marie-Louise Coster Minnie Mouse Nail ArtStep 6
Draw the outline of the character, her eyes and her bow, with a black gel paint. Give the bow some detail with creases and a knot. 

Marie-Louise Coster Minnie Mouse Nail ArtStep 7
Add the eyelashes and use some of the excess black gel paint that is on your brush to create a shadow inside the left half of the bow. This will make it pop and it give a 3D effect so it looks like a full bow, not flat. 

Marie-Louise Coster Minnie Mouse Nail ArtStep 8
Draw in the crease above the nose, just under the eye, in an arc motion, draw in the outline of the mouth. Cure.

Pain the inside of the mouth in pink gel paint. Cure.

Using a darker shade of pink, or a very small amount of red, create a shadow at the back of the mouth. Cure.

Add a line in the centre to create the tongue. Cure.

At this point you can connect or sharpen any areas you feel need it, and paint your background whatever colour you want it to be. 

Step 9
Once cured completely, seal with a topcoat. You can use either Matte or Gloss, whichever you prefer. 

Marie-Louise Coster is a Beauty Therapist, Trainer and Business Consultant, with over 20 years' experience in the industry. All About Mi Beauty & Holistic Training School is ABT-accredited.