26 Amazing Nail Ideas for Kids for Fun or Special Occasions

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No matter if you choose to paint your child’s nails yourself or take them to a salon, here are some adorable and playful nail designs for kids that will make their nails look cute and fun.

1. Hearts

Designs and nail art can make a hand stand out without too many loud colors. Simply put a clear base on your child’s nail, and then either paint or stick little hearts on top of the base.

Try using a variety of colors for the hearts, or keep it simple if that’s what your child wants. This is a perfect design for Valentine’s Day or any day your little one is feeling especially loving!

2. Chrome Pastels

If you’re looking for something with a bit more pop, chrome pastels may be the ticket. The bright, shiny finish makes a statement no matter what color polish your child chooses.

Chromes also tend to look more finished than other styles, and they became a major craze in the last year.

I don’t think pastels will ever go out of style, and this is a perfect way for your child to spice them up.

3. Rainbows

If your child loves the look of rainbows, you can use polish or stickers to give the nails a rainbow flow. Paint the whole nail or part of it depending on your preference.

This is a great choice for kids who have trouble deciding on just one color and is always something fun to try.

4. Unicorns

Any backdrop works for unicorns! You don’t have to learn how to paint your very own unicorn. Simply get some unicorn nail stickers to go over a clear coat or a colorful background.

Unicorns are perfect for a birthday, a spring event, or any kid who simply loves whimsy!

5. Flowers & Strawberries

It’s easy to find press-on nails that feature flowers and strawberries. You can also use stickers or gel polishes to create this look. It’s a fun look for summer and is vibrantly colorful.

6. Hello Kitty

Hello Kitty is still all the rage, even after all these years. If your child wants a vintage manicure, grab some Hello Kitty stickers to go over a glossy, bright nail. 

7. Ocean Waves

Does your child want to feel the ocean breeze in their hair? Maybe ocean nails will help them imagine it when they aren’t on vacation.

You can paint your own waves of blue on the tips, or you can find stickers that cover a clear base coat and look like they are in motion. Go all out and add a cute mermaid to complete the look!

8. Ombre Colors

If your child loves a color but doesn’t want the same intensity across the entire nail, try a gradient.

You can use a light pink at the cuticle that slowly flows into a darker hue until it reaches red at the tip. 

9. Rainbow Gradient

Instead of painting one typical rainbow across your child’s nail, paint a rainbow gradient.

Start with the last color of the rainbow closest to the cuticle and paint out as you add more shades from the rainbow.

10. Jelly Polish With Glitter

Jelly polish is brighter and thicker and can contain elements like sparkly glitter built into the design.

The extra pop will make your child’s nails stand out, and jelly polish will last longer than regular polish in most cases.

11. Neons and Sparkles

If you want sparkles without glitter all over your floor, paint your child’s nails neon and throw on some sparkly polish as well.

This is a great party look that keeps the sparkles on your child’s hands instead of all over your house.

12. Strawberry Accent Nails and French Tips

Imagine the typical French manicure but in a bit of reverse. The white nail is topped off at the end with a bright red curve, creating a strawberry-like design.

One or more accent nails featuring a cute strawberry completes this fun nail look. Switch things up, and try this idea with watermelons instead if that’s more your thing.

13. Candy Hearts

Whether or not your child likes the taste of candy heart candies, they are sure to love the candy heart designs.

Get stickers that can cover the nails with sweet messages like Luv U and Be Mine!

14. Tropical Flowers

For a child who likes bright colors, throw some tropical flower designs on top of a clear base coat. These are bold and lovely, and they are perfect for the child who wants a bit of flair.

15. Different Colors

Making choices is hard, so simply paint each nail on your child’s hands a different color. This simple nail idea gives them a bright variety that is sure to match something they are wearing.

Go a little crazy and try polka dot nails or striped nails in bold and bright colors too.

16. Kitty Cats

It’s not easy to paint kittens on your child’s nails, but it’s not impossible. From paw prints to a delicate face with whiskers, the kitten aesthetic can be accomplished using polish.

Even if you don’t do a perfect job, this idea is sure to put a smile on your little one’s face. Once you master kittens, move on to other cute animal themes like zebras, bunnies, or panda faces.

17. Puppies

Use stickers or your own creative talents to paint some precious puppies on your child’s nails.

You can focus on simply adding a puppy face to the tip of the already-painted nail so you won’t have to stress about detailing as much space.

18. Glittering Purple Gradient

Painting nails using one color applied in a gradient pattern can be learned. You can find videos and tutorials on how to do this.

You may also be able to find gel paint or stickers that make the process easier. Either way, a purple gradient is lovely and can look like a summer sunset.

19. Turtles

If your child can sit still long enough, you can use a variety of greens to paint either a turtle shell or an entire turtle on their nails.

It may take some time and a steady hand, but this design is cute and will definitely appeal to the younger crowd.

20. Moon and Stars

Keep it simple with a clear base coat covered in crescent moons and sparkling stars.

You can achieve this using stickers or gold paint. These are classic and will go with any outfit your child wears.

21. Teddy Bears

What little girl doesn’t love teddy bears? Teddy bears don’t have to be elaborate to be recognizable.

Paint a brown bottom coat, and then throw on some dotted eyes and a nose. You can even elevate the ears a bit with a thick polish.

22. Spider-Man

Got a child who is obsessed with Spider-Man? Give them a bottom coat of red or blue, and then paint webbed designs to create this superhero design.

23. Leopard Spots

Animal prints aren’t just for clothes! You can give your child leopard prints on their nails, and they can choose any color they want. 

24. Bold Black and White

The monochromatic look never goes out of style. If your child wants something that will really stand out, give them alternating black and white nails, or make designs using these two colors.

There are also plenty of gel nails or stickers that are black and white.

25. Hot Pink Designs

Coming out of the summer of Barbie, it’s not surprising to find that many kids are ready to rock the hot pink nail trend.

You can go for hot pink all over or add polka dots or stripes in hot pink. Why not add a little rhinestone or two to really set off the bright color?

26. Shooting Hearts & Stars

Add a charcoal base and some lovely glitter to make a shooting hearts and stars design.

While you can use any background color, a charcoal or gray base color will help the hearts and stars stand out against the nail.