Everything you need to know about nail stamping

Everything you need to know about nail stamping

How to stamp? How to stamp like a pro? Why it didn’t work for me, what am I doing wrong?
You can find these questions on online forums really often and that’s the reason why I’m going to teach you how to stamp! If you haven’t stamp before, it’s okay, I’m going to explain it to you.

Nail stamping is really awesome way how to do your nails, you can do infinitely many creations and if you learn it, you wouldn’t want to do anything else. There are two types of nail stamping, regular sramping and the reverse stamping. I will teach you how to do both types. 😉


1. Nail stamping

What you need:
• nail plates
• polish for stamping
• stamper
• scraper


Nail plate

There are three types:
a) Separated patterns.
b) Patterns on whole nails.
c) Continuing patterns across the whole nail plate.

When you are choosing the variant of the nail plate, you can not go wrong with any of them, just choose something you like. I would be aware of variant b) because of the size of the pattrens, some of them could be small (you can see the difference on the photo below).

Price could be in your local stores very high, so I recommend to you buy plates from ebay/aliexpress. Some of them are for 1 dollar. The quality is the same. Just type to the seach box “stamping plate” and choose which one you like. Brands I recommend from the cheaper ones Born Pretty, Harunouta and from the expensive MoYou or Moyra.

For a comparison, here you can see the “mini” plate (12×6 cm) and bigger plate (10,4×14,5 cm). If  you have small nails, you won’t have any problem.

The size of the stamping plate could be from the smaller in diameter 5 cm to nails plates of format A4 paper size. Like I said, it’s good to choose nail plate according to your biggest nail (thumb). Big nail plate doesn’t mean big pattern! If you bought nail plate with small pattern, it’s useless for you unless you want to stamp only on half of your nail. Measure your height and width of your nail and obey it. Read the reviews of the nail plate, look for the real photos and try to deduce the size of the pattern. Sellers usually don’t write it.


Stamping polish

a) Regular stamping polish. Theoreticaly you can use any nail polish you have at home. It just need to be pigmented and thick. You need to try it.
b) Stamping polish. Is special polish which is more pigmented and dries faster. Some of them you can use as a regular polish.

The price ranges from 2 dollars to several dozens. The cheapest but still good are in range of 3-7 dollars. You can buy them in pharmacy (e.g. brand Essence) or special nail shops. If you want to save money, look at ebay/aliexpress.

The variants can differ from colours, volume to brand. You can find holographic stamping polish, so you don’t need to use only black and white. Its volume is normally about 6 ml and it can look as a small bottle but it can last for months. I can recommend you brands as Essence, Konad or Born Pretty.


You need to have good stamper if you want to stamp! On the photo below you can see four stampers about which we are going talk more.

a) Stamper with silicon head which is elastic and soft. It’s great for complicated patterns as swirls or lace.
b) Stamper with rubber head which is softer than regular eraser. It’s great for small and separete patterns.
c) Stamper with rubber head but it’s reall hard. Essence or Konad sells this but I recommend avoiding these stampers. They are really small and are not soft (and you need that!). The diameter is about 2,3 cm.
d) Stamper with transparent head which is soft and elastic just about right. It’s great for simple patterns over the entire nail and even on separete patterns. The diameter is 4 cm.You can find a lot of variants but I recomend you to buy transparent stamper. With transparent holder and head you can see where you stamp. You need to choose the right diameter too, the regular diameter is about 3,5 cm. You can find bigger stampers but it’s only what you fits you.

I have a lot tips and tricks about stampers. If you have brand new stamper and it doesn’t work, try to matt the surface. Take a file and file it, it helps! Try it only on shiny silicon caps!
Don’t use polish remover on silicon stampers. Me and Šarlota did this mistake and ours stampers are no longer transparent. It etched the surface. Instead of using polish remover try roller which you use on your clothes. It’s fast and you can’t damage your stampers.



It’s silly but the scraper is really important. You can use:

a) Regular card which you can find at home. For example customer card or a gift card which you don’t use.
b) Metallic scraper which is part of the package with stamper. I DO NOT RECOMMEND using it! You can scratch your nail plate!
c) Special scraper, it could be part of the package too. It can be smaller, it’s more elastic and thinner.

The price of special scrapers are really low and customer cards are for free.

Tip for you: If you have complicated pattern, don’t use elastic scraper. Try to use harder scraper, it leaves the polish in the pattern.

Another necessary things

For the stamping you need other necessary things for example a cotton wool or a cotton ball for removing the polish from the pattern. The cotton could leave particles on you nail plate so try to use cellulose wadding. If it still doesn’t work try to change the polish remover for 100% acetone.

And now you are the master of the stamping things, now I can teach you how to stamp.

Step by step:
1. Apply base coat and base colour.

2. Choose motive from the nail plate, apply the stamping poligh and just wipe off the spare nail polish with scraper. The polish should be equally filled in the grooves.

3. Push to the motive with a stamper. It should transfer to the stamper.

4. Stamp the motive on your nail. If you have transparent stamper you can perfectly see where are you stamping it.

5. Apply top coat.

Tip! You MUST work really fast. If the polish dries on the nail plate or the stamper, you won’t be able to stamp it. When you are picking the motive, you can try cradling or quick pressing.

2. Reverse stamping

It’s used when you want to stamp the motive but you want to have it perfectly done or colour different pieces with different colours. You need the same things like with the normal stamping.

Step by step:

1. Choose motive from the nail plate, apply the stamping poligh and just wipe off the spare nail polish with scraper.

2. Push to the motive with a stamper. It should transfer to the stamper.

3. You let the motive on the stamper/silicon matt and you have these options:
a) apply transparent nail polish
b) with a nail polish you will colour different pieces of the motives, when it’s dry, apply transparent nail polish

4. Let everything dry (not too much because the nail polish would lose the elasticity)

5. With tweezers grap the sticker from the stamper/nail mat, cut the edges.

6. Apply top coat and let it dry for 2 minutes. It should be a little bit sticky.

7. Put the motive on your nail.

8. Apply top coat.

I decided to write this article because the brief instructions are not enough. There are more things you need to know.
If you learned something or it still doesn’t work, let me know 🙂

Here you can see what you can create with this method.

This awesome mani did my friend Míša using stamping method. She used regular stamping polish and sticking it on transfer foil.

Look at the last manicure Šarlota did with this method. Do you like unicorns?


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. More information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.