Have you SEEN some of the biker nail designs out there?
Some of them are downright terrifying!
You might see:
- 6 inch talons on fire with purple and orange flames
- long, blood-red claws with pointed tips like dripping vampire teeth, and
- slightly wonky, hand-drawn skulls that could be a Halloween prank.
Honestly, who designs these?
Someone on day release from a nail bar in Hell?
Biker nails can show a little attitude, but still be feminine. Your nails don’t need to look like you’re getting ready for the Zombie Apocalypse. A hint of glitter adds interest to heavy black polish. Some flashes of color and pretty decals can make a manicure stand out like a beautiful customized motorcycle.
Biker nail designs don’t have to make you look part demon.
Believe it or not, they can actually be pretty.
I think the secret is to avoid the clichés.
Skulls, flames, blood … that’s fine for teenage boys.
But for grown women?
I don’t think so.
There’s a better way.
The key is to simply to think about your motorcycle gear – and what will work with that look.
So what goes well with leather and denim?
What will lift all-black motorcycle gear, and make it clear there’s a woman under all those layers?
I have some ideas about that!
Some of these designs look great on a motorcycle, or in the garage.
Some of them look pretty up against nature in the sunshine (which is where you’ll be on a motorcycle ride, after all).
And some will be perfect for date night
(Need some tips on how to get ready? Here’s how to wear makeup in a motorcycle helmet, and how to fix helmet hair).
All of these manicures are low fuss, and relatively easy to do.
If I can do them, you can do them.
I’m not big on fussing with my nails, I have to admit.
But now and then you want to make an effort, right?
So let’s take some classic manicures and add a little motorcycle twist…
10 Biker Nail Designs You’ll Want to Try
Try these pretty nail ideas yourself, or use them as inspiration for your own designs.
1. The Hairy Biker
Does your biker have a beard?
Celebrate the joys of facial hair with these little moustachio nail decals.
It’s a great way to show that you’re a fan of the biker beard.
And the perfect time to try this manicure?
Date night, of course!
One-on-one time with your furry other half.
He wears the beard.
And you have matching moustaches on your fingertips.
Did you ever think a beard-related manicure could be so romantic?
2. The Biker Queen
Riding on a motorcycle naturally makes you feel like royalty.
OK, you probably have a little more attitude than the Queen.
And you ARE wearing a motorcycle helmet instead of a crown, right?
(You also deserve a pillion seat that’s fit for a princess, you know…)
So why not wear a set of little crowns on your nails?
When people start randomly curtseying in front of you, and calling you ‘Your Majesty,’ try not to act surprised…
3. Vintage Motorcycle Manicure
This red and silver biker nail combination is an instant, classic piece of design.
Just like a vintage motorcycle!
These colors reflect the gas tank and pipes you might see on a vintage Indian or BSA. That traditional deep, red paintwork.
The flash of glittering silver as the sunlight glints off the chrome.
So pretty, so classic.
4. Fields of Flowers
Heading out on a motorcycle ride through nature?
(Or maybe you just wish you were…)
With this manicure, it doesn’t matter where you’re headed.
You brought your own flowers!
You might want to wear your fingerless gloves with these ones, though – these 3D decals will catch in full motorcycle gloves for sure.
5. Motorcycle Marilyn
Red nails always look glamorous and ladylike.
But how to add a little biker flair?
With a black heart, or two.
It’s just like a dramatic stroke of black liquid eyeliner.
Very Marilyn Monroe.
It lifts a classic feminine look into the biker nails category.
Oh, and Marilyn loved cats, too!
(But did she have biker cats, I wonder?)
6. The Biker Unicorn
I may be wearing leather.
But everyone knows there’s a hippy underneath.
If I could get away with wearing flowers in my hair every day, I’d do it for sure.
And I know I’m not alone.
I’ve met plenty of biker women with some tell-tale hippy signs of their own:
You might have one of them yourself:
- A butterfly tattoo
- A t-shirt that says Never ride faster than your guardian angel can fly
- A flower decal on your motorcycle helmet
- Embroidery on your jeans or jacket, or
- Long hair when you’re a little over 25….
There’s nothing wrong with a little flower power.
And it looks great with biker leather and denim.
7. The Biker Cupid
Red nails are so grown up and sophisticated.
But on their own, they’re a little boring.
What if you throw a cupid heart decal into the mix?
Suddenly you have a stylish manicure that makes you smile, too.
This little addition is unexpected, and somehow joyful.
And yep, you’ll need that sense of humor on a motorcycle as well.
8. Night Sky Nails
Plain black nails are all well and good.
But they’re a little plain, and predictable.
Add a sprinkle of silver glitter, though, and you’ve suddenly created a new galaxy.
Now you have a little cluster of stars on your nails.
This simple manicure is as pretty as the night sky.
9. Gold Finger
Here’s another way to reinvent basic black fingertips.
Turn one of your nails sparkling gold.
It shimmers and catches the light – just like a piece of jewellery in fact!
And if that happens to lead the conversation towards the topic of rings and bracelets, well, so be it…
10. Just One Flower
Basic black nails are cool, sure.
But add some pink, and now they’re pretty, too.
This simple flower on a pink nail adds softness to an otherwise hard-core black manicure.
And there’s nothing very girly about it.
This one’s rocking almost as hard as the black nails around it.
Now you have plenty of inspiration to work with!
By adding a little extra flourish to classic manicures, you end up with really wearable nails that’ll look great on a motorcycle, or on date night.
But how do you make these feminine biker nails happen?
That’s easy, too…
4 Simple Steps to Creating Pretty Biker Nails
It shouldn’t take hours to make your nails look great.
Of course you’d rather be out on the motorcycle than sitting at home fussing over your nails.
So let’s keep things simple.
In fact, this pared-back manicure approach is SO simple, it’s child’s play.
There are four quick and easy steps…
Step 1: Prepare your nails
Yep, you learned how to do this when you were 16.
Back then, the color of your nail polish was more important than world peace.
Ah, those were the days…
For old time’s sake, crank up some Pat Benetar.
Shape your nails with an emery board, and push the cuticles back.
Snap your gum and roll your eyes (oh yeah, teenagers still do that) because this is the boring part.
The fun stuff comes next.
Step 2: Use polishes you have
If you’re anything like me, you have a handful of nail colors somewhere in the bathroom cupboards, and some clear polish. Just pick a favorite color, and go with that.
Now, whichever design you go with, you HAVE to start with a first coat of clear base.
I know, it’s annoying to bother with this step, but it’s worth doing.
It really does make for a smoother final result.
When the base coat is dry, add 2-3 thin layers of your chosen color.
Of course, while you’re waiting around for the layers to dry, you could always read an article or two on Pillioness (he, he, he…)
Step 3: Add some glamor
When your color’s dry and even, it’s time to bring in the decorators.
Choose a nail that you want to highlight.
Think of it as a feature wall.
It gets its own special wallpaper.
There are two quick and easy ways to decorate a feature nail: with glitter, or with a decal.
If you’re adding nail glitter…
Put down a piece of kitchen paper first.
Things are about to get sparkly…
Then you simply run through these steps:
- Add a coat of clear polish to the nail you want to feature.
- Take a little spoon or scooped manicure tool if you can find one (I never can).
- Sprinkle the glitter on top of the clear coat while it’s still wet.
- Turn your nail to both sides and make sure all surfaces are covered.
(Don’t worry if you get glitter on your skin; it’ll only stick to the polish on your nail.)
- Don’t touch anything until the clear coat has dried, and the glitter has stuck.
- Then tap the side of your finger with the spoon and the excess will fall off.
- Clean up around the cuticle with a cotton bud in polish remover.
One of your nails is now extra special.
It’s all beautiful and glittery.
If you’re adding a decal…
You’ll need to master the art of separating nail stickers from their backing paper.
Some just peel off.
Others you need to soak in a glass of water for a few seconds.
It’ll be pretty obvious which kind you have.
Here’s how to master nail decals in about 60 seconds:
- Sacrifice one or two ugly decals as a practice run.
- Watch them fall on the floor, and get covered in cat fur.
- Throw away your practice decals, and focus on the one you want.
- Have it peeled and ready, and then position it carefully over your nail.
- Press it GENTLY but FIRMLY into place.
- If it’s tiny and fiddly, use tweezers to help you be more precise.
This is not brain surgery.
If 14 year old girls can do it on YouTube, believe me, you’re up to the challenge too.
Step 4: Add one more coat of clear polish
Seal your gorgeous work of nail art with a clear top coat of polish.
Yep, it IS worth bothering with this step.
And here’s why.
A final coat:
- Smooths out any little grooves or nicks
- Helps seal the glitter, or
- Bonds the decal to the nail.
That’s all there is to it.
That’s the whole biker nail manicure routine right there.
Pretty quick and easy, huh?
Unless something goes wrong, of course.
Let’s deal with that next.
How to Fix Biker Nail Mistakes: 6 Easy Tips
OK, so you may not be trying for something as tricky as this…
How many hours would this dramatic creation even take?
You’d need to buy motorcycle gloves in a larger size to get them on over this!
But even with a simple motorcycle manicure, plenty of things can still go wrong.
Here’s how to troubleshoot the 6 most common problems.
1. Using tweezers to place decals
Get the pesky leftover eyebrow hairs out first.
Unless you check, you won’t even know they’re there until it’s too late.
They don’t look that great sticking out of your nail polish.
You may have multiple sets of tweezers to choose from.
If you have a pointy pair and a blunt pair, use the pointy ones.
They’re more precise and easier to control.
2. Nail decals are all different
Some of them are super sticky.
You only get one chance with these.
A clumped up ball of sticky mess on your nail means you have to start over.
What a pain!
There’s a motorcycle waiting to be ridden.
With the super sticky decals, you must be bold and confident!
Position and press like you know what you’re doing.
Other nail decals won’t do as they’re told.
They start lifting off your nail right away.
Press them down with the tweezers, and top coat ‘em in place – quick!
3. Glitter is a monster
I’m a huge fan of shiny things.
And glitter looks gorgeous on your nails (and everywhere else, let’s face it).
But glitter is a BEAST.
It has a mind of its own, there’s no doubt.
And it really likes to travel…
So before you open that harmless looking little container of sparkles:
- Close the window so it doesn’t fly everywhere.
- Turn off the saucepan on the stove so you don’t try and stir your dinner with glittery fingers (glitter doesn’t taste that good).
- Put down a paper towel on your work surface – before you start.
- When you’re done, wipe up the fallout before it gets tracked all through your house, or the dog starts licking it.
4. Glitter and decal removal takes patience
It takes a few more minutes to remove a layer of glitter or a decal from your nail as well as your polish. So don’t freak out, and start clawing the glitter off.
It WILL come off – eventually.
Hold a cotton ball soaked in nail polish remover against your nail, and just wait for a few minutes.
5. Don’t rush
Nails that are still a little wet will smudge, and stick to everything.
You definitely can’t try and slip even slightly wet nails into motorcycle gloves.
So try to plan ahead.
Do your manicure while you’re watching Netflix at night – not on the morning of a motorcycle ride.
6. If you have a nail disaster…
What if you have a nail catastrophe?
Say you put a decal on upside down.
Or try to do the dishes while your nails are still wet.
Just cover up the mess with the most fun disguise ever.
Apply a clear coat over the mess, and sprinkle on some glitter.
Not only is it fixed, but now it’s sparkly, too.
If only we could do that with all the other Life Stuff that doesn’t go quite to plan…
So now you know that biker nails can be pretty!
AND you know how to make that happen.
It doesn’t take all day.
And you won’t need a manicurist who specializes in demon chic.