Cat Eye Nail Art Isn't As Hard As You Think--Here's How To Do 'Em

March 1, 2018 by Samantha Peters
shefinds | beauty

From “pimple nails” to hairy manicures, nail trends seem to get more bizarre by the minute. And now, the latest wacky fad is pulling inspiration from none other than our favorite furry friends. Allow us to introduce you to Cat Eye Nails, the feline look that’s currently taking over our Instagram feeds.

Indicative of its name, the trend is all about creating the reflective, dimensional look of a cat’s eye. To do this, the look requires a special gel polish and hand-held magnet. According to Michelle Wong, Ph.D, the polish contains iron powder fragments  that are drawn to the magnet, which ultimately creates that mesmerizing galactic effect.

“The iron particles are quite dense, so they usually sink to the base layer of the polish as it’s applied,” she explained to “When you place the magnet over the nail, the iron particles rise toward the surface and stay there due to the thickness of the polish as it dries.”

Pretty cool, right? To help you nail the look (pun intended) right in your very own home, we’ve provided step-by-step instructions below.

1. Gather your supplies.

To start, you’ll need a gel base coat, magnetic polish in the color of your choice and a handheld magnet, like this Cat Eye 3D Effect Strong Magnet from Ebay. You can also find a variety of heavenly hues online to suit whatever mood you’re feeling in the moment.

2. Prep the nail.

Of course, your base is just as important as the products you use to get the perfect finish. Do any necessary cleanup, like trimming and cuticle cutting, for sleek, shapely nails. Depending on your style, you can keep them short and straight or create long, pointed tips for the ultimate feline effect. (We’re totally obsessed with this below look!)

3. Apply your base coat.

To help your color last longer, apply a base coat to your nails and let it completely dry.

4. Apply your first coat.

Now, get out your gel nail polish and apply one coat. Be sure to cap the free edge for a full-color look.

5. Get our your magnet.

Directly after you apply the polish, hover the magnet over your nail as close to the surface as possible without touching it. Then, hold the magnet steady for about five to 10 seconds.

Tip: If you move the magnet while it’s over the nail, the polish may end up looking spotty. A quick fix? Simply apply a thin layer of polish over it – this will erase the magnetic effect and let you start fresh.

4. Apply a second coat.

Next, apply a second layer of polish and repeat step 5. To solidify the look, you can also apply a top coat as the final step.


A post shared by Ty Govan (@govanty) on

We could honestly stare at these nails for days! Let us know what you think of the look in the comments below.

For even more amazing nail inspiration, check out Everything You Need To Know About Trendy “Powder Gel Manicures” and How To Remove Dark Nail Polish Without Staining The Skin Around Your Nails.

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