40 Festive and Bright Nail Art Ideas for Christmas

Prepare to sleigh.


The stockings are hung by the mantle with care — and your nails are polished to festive perfection. Find manicure design inspo that highlights every symbol of the season.

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Christmas Nail Art
Jessica Harris
Sensational Snowflakes

With designs reminiscent of your coziest Christmas sweater, this art by Jessica Harris of @perfect10customnails is glam and full of holiday cheer.

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Christmas Nail Art
Kathryn Wirsing
String Lights

play the role of Christmas lights in this festive manicure. To really make them stand out, try a darker, holiday-inspired green shade as your base, like Marc Jacobs Beauty Enamored Hi-Shine Nail Polish in Jealous Glaze ($18, ).

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Christmas Nail Art
Frolicking Penguins

Thanks to Kellie, a UK-based manicurist, you'll have the most adorable nails of the season. Each penguin is slightly different, giving each nail plenty of personality and charm.

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Christmas Nail Art
Anna Kate
Matte Reindeer Silhouettes

Rudolph and his pals never looked so good. Nail designer Anna Kate crafted these festive nails to celebrate the holidays in style.

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Christmas Nail Art
Seasons Nail Bar
Green Star Power

Be the star of the office holiday party with this simplistic design from Seasons Nail Bar.

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Christmas Nail Art
Nail Poetry
Christmas French

Ho-ho-how cute is this? Nail Poetry, a salon located in Costa Mesa, California, created this Santa-inspired design with French tips.

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Christmas Nail Art
Snow Globe Nails

No need to shake these! Create a winter wonderland on your nail beds with miniature trees and a snowman, of course.

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Christmas Nail Art
Snowman Accent Nail

You'll feel anything but blue with this snowflake-and-snowman combination. The accent nail is giving us serious Olaf vibes.

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Christmas Nail Art
Holly Berries

Get in the holiday spirit with these nails, complete with adorable holly berries. The asymmetrical placement adds a fun and flirty flair to the entire look.

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Christmas Nail Art
Red Matte With Leaves

The holiday red is there, yes, but you could make this look happen year-round. With a matte finish on three fingers and a design on the other two, these nails are subtle but oh-so special.

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Christmas Nail Art
Twinkling Stars

Celebrity nail artist Madeline Poole used Sally Hansen Color Therapy Nail Polish in Unwine'd ($8, ) as the backdrop to simple yet stunning white stars.

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Christmas Nail Art
Snow-Capped Mountains

We love this geometric take on a classic winter nature scene. Believe it or not, nail artist JauntyJuli actually uses to get the gorgeous greens you see here!

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Over-The-Top Winter Talons

Nail artist created a simultaneously wacky and glamorous winter-themed manicure featuring a thermometer, jingle bell, and working snow globe!

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Christmas Nail Art
Charlie Brown Christmas

With a steady hand, a trusty and a love for this Christmas classic, you can have the most nostalgic nail art this winter!

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Christmas Nail Art
Copycat Claws
"Ugly" Christmas Sweater

There's nothing ugly about this Christmas sweater-inspired mani — in fact, festive nail art in a seasonal color scheme sounds like the prettiest of winter accessories. And if you're thinking that you could never recreate those tiny sweater details on your own, have no fear. It can all be done with the help of a .

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Christmas Nail Art
Instagram / @carlysisoka
Chic Icicles

We love this subtle nod to winter weather, especially how the silver pops against the base Zoya Nail Polish in Blu ($10, ). The thin streaks of different shades of gray look like dangling icicles — a great twist to the popular gradient manicure.

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Christmas Nail Art
Instagram / @angelnailedit
Sparkly Center

If you love a basic white manicure but want to make it more fun for the holidays, just paint one with a gold or silver metallic polish, like Essie's Summit of Style ($9, ) for an added dose of pizzazz.

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Christmas Nail Art
Chalkboard Nails
Warm and Fuzzy

Hit a nostalgic note with this delightful knit pattern plus a matryoshka doll accent. The double pink shades — we recommend French Affair by Essie ($9, ) and Neon Heat by Orly ($8, ) — make this a pleasant surprise for the season.

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Christmas Nail Art
Star Gazer

Playing with negative space is an easy way to take your manicure to a whole new level. All you need are a few beautiful jewel tones and some .

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Christmas Nail Art
Chalkboard Nails
Glitter Dipped

Elevate a white mani by sprinkling festive red and green glitter on the bottom of your nails. (This is also a great way to hide any chips or imperfections before a last-minute soirée.)

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Christmas Nail Art
I Feel Polished
Reverse Gold Gradient

Polish off a manicure by adding a touch of gold glitter at the base. We recommend applying the glitter with a make-up sponge so you don't overdo it.

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Christmas Nail Art
Chalkboard Nails
Fully Functional String Lights

That's right: These nails don't just have Christmas bulbs painted on them, they actually glow in the dark thanks to China Glaze Ghoulish Glow when you switch the lights off. Brilliant!

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Christmas Nail Art
Sassy Shelly
Winter Wonderland

Not only is this a striking tribute to the season, it's also a beautiful way to celebrate nature on your nails. Bonus: Because it's accomplished , it's much easier than simply hand painting each individual tree.

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Christmas Nail Art
Smith and Cult
Deck the Nails

These nails are so delicate and pretty, they look more like holiday watercolor painting than a manicure. If your hand is a little less steady with a , this almost-abstract design is perfect for you.

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Christmas Nail Art
Paintbox Nails
Wrapping Paper

Metallics will always be a favorite texture of nail art enthusiasts, but you can add your own unique touch with tiny gold accents toward the bottom of your nails.

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Christmas Nail Art
Color Club
Chevron Chic

Once you've mastered the art of chevron, a.k.a. that fun zig-zag pattern on the outer nails of this mani, you can use it with any color combo for any holiday. Still, it looks prettiest in a holiday manicure complete with .

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Christmas Nail Art
Urban Nail Art
All Wrapped Up

Mimic your favorite wrapping paper with glittery diagonal stripes across each nail. A sweet wreath on your ring finger tops this look off with an extra cute accent.

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Christmas Nail Art

One of the best things about the holidays (depending on where you live, of course): snow. Celebrate those first few snowflakes of winter with this delicate design on your mani. We recommend a festive red base like OPI's Big Apple Red ($11, ).

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Christmas Nail Art
Instagram / @fairynails2013
Santa Claws

You don't need to go all-out on your nails to make an impact. Simply painting a little Santa hat on each hand's accent nail makes it clear that you love Christmas without all the glitter, shimmer or stripes of more complicated designs.

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Christmas Nail Art
Copycat Claws
Thin Ribbons

This thin, slightly swirled design created with a is reminiscent of ribbon candy, making them perfect for pairing with your holiday party look.

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