Photo Credit: Did My Nails
While there are some pretty crazy teen fads out there -- nail art is a trend that's pretty tame -- and really cute. Teach your daughter how to do one of these easy and age-appropriate nail art designs for her next sleepover, school dance or mall date -- and rack up some super-cool mom points.
Did My Nails
From the softball field to the slumber party, this strawberry mani works for whatever upcoming spring plans your girl may have. DidMyNails started with a red base, and then used white and yellow polish applied with a small brush to create the seeds. She dripped black polish on the tips and followed that up with green polish to give the leaves a 3-D appearance. (But honestly, you can skip the black and still get the cute strawberry stem effect!)
Room for Dessert
Blanket Print Nails
Let your girl show off her sweet side with this cute cupcake mani by Joya of Blanket Print Nails. Choose a neutral base color, then paint a French tip in any shade to serve as the baking cup. Paint stripes in a darker color with a smaller brush on the cup. Top off the dessert by using a bobby pin to create the icing and sprinkles -- and add a dot of red polish for the cherry on top.
Pretty Polka Dots
One Nail to Rule Them All
She'll swoon over this sassy dot mani. After painting the nails two different colors on top and bottom, Alice of One Nail to Rule Them All used dotting tools -- so easy! -- to create both the dots and the stripes.
Blanket Print Nails
Nail stickers are a cute and convenient option if your girl can't sit still long enough to let the paint dry. But if you really want the DIY challenge, check out how Blanket Print Nails created this manicure.
Your book lovin' girl will go crazy for this mani, inspired by The Very Hungry Caterpillar! Sammy of The Nailasaurus used a white base color and painted the caterpillar and some of his Saturday snacks freehand. If that's too difficult -- or requires patience your girl doesn't have -- try these press-on nails instead.
This cartoonish twist on a lady bug design is cute without being babyish. Lucy of Lucy's Stash created this manicure in easy steps: start by painting all nails red except for the two ring fingers, which should be turquoise. Then using a dotting tool, make the ladybug spots. Lastly, use a permanent marker or a black nail pen to draw the critter, and white and red nail polish to fill him in. Or you can skip the drawing and opt for a ladybug nail sticker -- it's just as cute!
Flight of Fancy
This sweet (and easier than it looks) butterfly mani from Julep only requires three colors, an orange nail pen and a small paint brush. Paint the whole nail red, create a diagonal line and a half moon with black, and finish with white dots. Done!
Keep your night owl on trend with this simple DIY design. These sweet owls can be created with a series of circles, triangles and dots made with an orange stick and a small nail art brush. Get the full tutorial from Julep.
These nails will make your girl the cool cat at school. To pull off this pattern from Jane at Nailside, use a blue base color and doodle the critters on with permanent marker or a black nail pen.
Over the Rainbow
She's having a rainbow birthday party, complete with a rainbow cake. What's next? Rainbow nails! It's super easy -- start with a white base and paint vertical colorful stripes. And don't worry if the colors blend together, that's part of the allure. (You can check out a full tutorial on Nailside.)
Many Shades of Love
If your girl wears her heart on her sleeve, now she can wear it on her nails, too. Blogger Lydia of Purple Castle painted this pretty cursive design freehand, but if that's too hard -- rainbow heart stickers work, too.
Heart to Heart
One Nail to Rule All
Perfect for an indie-rock princess, this mani is cool but still age-appropriate. Alice from One Nail to Rule Them All started with a silver glitter base color, and outlined brightly colored hearts with black acrylic paint.
Superhero style? Give her nails some extra pow by copying this design from Lindsey of Neverland Nail Blog. Start with a white base color and apply bold, dark shades using a dotting tool and striping brush. Then, write expressions like Pow! and Bam! with black polish and a striping brush.
Sammy of The Nailasaurus created the gorgeous gingham – perfect for school days or picnic parties -- with some bright colors and a few swipes of the striping brush. Start with a white base coat, then add stripes in your favorite shades.
Blow Dryer Mani
Here's a fun project for your girl's next sleepover: a mani using a blow dryer! To create this pretty watercolor look, Lindsey of Neverland Nail Blog used crème finish polishes, polish thinner, a small nail paint brush and a blow dryer. After allowing a white base coat to dry completely, thin out your polish color choices then dot them on your nails. Complete the design, by quickly blasting your nail with your blow dryer. Awesome.
Zig zags and pastel colors make this mani super sharp. Sarah of Chalkboard Nails placed striping tape over a white base color in a random pattern. She then used three shades of purple applied with a sponge to create the shading.