Five Beautiful Short Gel Nail Designs

Five Beautiful Short Gel Nail Designs

Nov 5, '21

Long nails don’t deserve to have all the fun! Short gel nail designs are trending right now too. We will share a few of these gel styles so that you and your clients have polished gel nails you adore.

Nail Prep

Prepping the nails is always essential before beginning a gel manicure. Always file, buff, and shape the nails before applying gel polish. Apply cuticle oil and push back the cuticles with a cuticle pusher. Then, cleanse the nails using a nail cleanser to remove the oils. 

A pH-balanced nail dehydrator removes dirt and oils on the fingernails before applying the gel base coat. Using the dehydrator is solely based on preference. Some nail techs recommend applying a dehydrator because it may help keep the gel from lifting. Generally, a gel polish manicure is worn for two weeks.

Gel Nail Designs for Short Nails

As we transition to the fall and winter months, you may be getting ready to transition your nail colors and designs as well. Darker, more earthy colors emerge this time of year, and sparkle ignites the holiday spirit.

Who says long nails have all the fun? When it comes to short nails, gel will help you create gorgeous designs. Here are five gel nail designs for short nails you need to try right now.

1. Chocolate Gel Nails

Rich, creamy milk chocolate nails are versatile and on-trend. Nothing makes a bolder statement than this neutral color topped with a matte or glossy finish.

Create the look by first prepping the nails. Then apply a thin layer of a quality gel base coat. Make sure to cap the nail’s free edge with the base coat to ensure complete coverage and to reduce lifting. Cure dry for 30 seconds to one minute under a UV or LED light.

Grab your chocolate gel polish and shake the bottle. Without touching the skin, apply a thin coat of gel polish all over the nails, getting as close to the cuticles as possible. Cure the nails and repeat by using another thin layer of gel. Cure after each coat of polish until you reach the desired color opacity. 

Finish the manicure with a velvety matte or glossy gel top coat and cure one final time. Remove the inhibition layer with a nail cleanser and a wipe clean. Next, apply cuticle oil to the nails for hydration. 

This chocolate mani is one of the sweetest manicures you will create this season.

2. Ice Blue Gel Nails

Blue hues are charming when they’re covered in icy sparkles. Choose any shade of blue gel polish you like, from navy to royal. You’ll need a gel base coat, blue gel polish, gel top coat, and silver, white, or holographic nail glitter powder for this design.

Begin by prepping the nails by filing, shaping, and buffing. Apply a thin layer of gel base coat over the entire nail plate, sealing in the free edge. Cure the nails for 30 seconds to one minute.

Paint two to three thin coats of the blue gel polish onto each nail, curing between each coat. Don’t cure the final coat of polish completely. It should be tacky so that the glitter will adhere to the nails.

Sprinkle the nail glitter onto each nail. Begin sprinkling glitter at the top of the nail and disperse it downward toward the bottom of the nail. This dispersion will create an iced ombre effect. Carefully pat the glitter into the nails and cure under the UV or LED light.

Apply the gel top coat over the glitter and cure one final time. Remove the inhibition layer with a nail cleanser and wipe clean. Apply cuticle oil for restored hydration. 

Now your digits are a shiny, iced blue!

3. Green Goddess Gel Nails

Green and gold equal goddess. This gel nail design is sure to leave you feeling like the Queen of the castle. Gather a gel base coat, a deep green (think pine or olive) gel polish, gel top coat, 

V Diamond Gel and a nail art brush. You will also need gold crystals or gold foil flakes.

Prep the nails and apply the gel base coat. Cure the nails 30 seconds to one minute until dry. Next, paint two to three thin coats of green gel polish onto each nail, curing each layer before applying the next.  

When the nails are dry, carefully apply the V Diamond Gel onto the nails where you want the gold crystals or foil to be placed. Use the nail art brush to apply the gel. Lay the crystals or foil onto the V Diamond Gel placement and press down into the gel, creating a bed for the embellishment. Cure for 60 seconds under LED light or two minutes under UV light.

Finally, apply the gel top coat onto each nail around the crystals (avoiding the surface of the crystals), and cure one last time. Apply cuticle oil. Your nails are now embellished in haute green and gold.

4. Birthday Suit Gel Nails

Anyone can wear a shade of nude beautifully. Regardless of skin tone, there’s a shade that’s right for you. Choose a cool, warm, or neutral tone of nude gel polish, and let’s get this nail party started!

Begin with nail prep, then apply the gel base coat and cure the nails until they are completely dry. Apply one thin coat of your chosen nude shade, then cure the nails again. Paint a second coat of gel polish and cure once more. If the color is still translucent, you may add a third coat of gel polish. Remember to cure each layer of the gel polish before applying the next. 

To complete the look, top your nude nails in either a matte or glossy gel top coat and cure one last time. Apply cuticle oil for hydration. 

This nail style will match any outfit and any occasion perfectly.

5. The French Gel Nail

A classic French manicure is a style that will never die. Whether the tips are white, inverted, or bedazzled, anything goes with a French manicure.

To create a classic French gel manicure, you will need a gel base coat, light pink gel polish for the base of the nail, white gel polish for the nail tip, and a gel top coat. You can customize your French mani by using different colors for the base and tips of the nails.

Prep the nails, then shake the bottle of gel base coat and apply a thin, even layer over each fingernail. Be careful not to flood the cuticle. Flooding the cuticle area will lead to a premature lifting of the gel polish. Cure the nails until dry.

Apply the gel polish base shade over each nail. Make sure to apply a thin, even layer and cure until dry - about 30 seconds under LED light or one minute under UV. Paint a second coat of your base gel color and cure again.

Remove the tacky layer (inhibition layer) from the nails by using a nail cleaner and wipe. This removal will ensure that you get clean, crisp white (or alternate color) smile lines on the tips of the nails.

Apply the alternate gel polish color to each nail tip, creating smile lines. Your lines will not be perfect, and that’s ok. You will clean those up later. Apply the gel from one sidewall to the other, making sure to cap the free edge.

Clean up the nail tips by using a nail brush and nail cleansing solution. Use one clean swipe across the nail, moving from one sidewall to the other in one stroke. Repeat these steps on each remaining nail. Once every nail tip has been refined, cure the nails for 30 seconds under an LED lamp or UV light.

Apply a thin layer of gel top coat to each nail, cap the free edge, and cure for one last time under the LED lamp for 30 seconds or one minute for UV. Remove the tacky layer with a nail cleanser and apply cuticle oil to replenish moisture in the cuticles.

The Bottom Line

You don’t need long nails to have beautifully manicured digits. There are plenty of gel nail designs available for short nails. From neutrals to French tips and sparkly embellishments, there is something for everyone’s nail wish list.

Valentino Beauty Pure flaunts some of the most pigmented gels on the market today. Our gels, acrylics, nail tools, equipment, and more provide you with the best quality in a nail product. 

Opt for Valentino Beauty Pure products for your next gel nail service.

Sources:

  1. Gel Polish Frequently Asked Questions | What The Gel
  2. Can You use Alcohol as a Nail Dehydrator? | You Have Style
  3. The Gel Manicure Lowdown: UV vs. LED | Allure