How To Do Aura Nails At Home, Straight From A Celebrity Manicurist

What’s your aura color?

Aura nails have been trending for quite some time now — so much so that A-listers like Megan Fox have gotten in on the buzzy manicure art. And from colorful hues that range from minimal to majorly statement-making, the result is meant to appear as if your nail beds are radiating an aura’s glow.

Julie Kandalec — a celeb-loved manicurist who frequently works with the likes of Anya Taylor-Joy, Jessica Chastain, and Emily Blunt — lets Bustle in on its origins: “It's a trend that is resurfacing from the ’90s when airbrush was super popular to create nail art. This time around, it's being used to create gradient looks.”

What Is An Aura, Anyway?

Simply put, auras are colors associated with your overall energy or vibe, and depending on your mood or moment in time throughout your life, they can ebb, flow, and even completely change in color. What’s more, experts tell Bustle that the size of your aura is relevant — with an aura smaller and closer to your body often associated with negative emotions (like feeling anxious, angry, or sad), while a larger-than-life aura that radiates from your self often associated with more positive emotions (like joy or vitality).

As an example, purple auras often mean one is perceptive and empathetic, while an orange aura is filled with excitement and a sense of adventure.

How To Do Aura Nails At Home

As for how to recreate the look at-home? First, lay down your base nail color (which can be anything you’d like — though sheer pink “lip gloss” tips are always a go-to). Then, Kandalec applies the first aura color in the center of the nail, softening the edges with a mini BeautyBlender. Once that initial aura layer has been diffused, add another drop of the same color in the aura’s center (or an entirely unique color if you’d like) for some added dimension and to “get an airbrush effect.” Repeat until you’re happy with how it looks.

Another pro tip? Kandalec notes that she dips her sponge in acetone-based polish remover to soften the sponge itself before gently diffusing the aura’s edges.

Once those layers have dried, finish with a clear, high-shine top coat, et voilà.

10 Aura Nail Art Ideas To Try

Sunset Aura

This classic, sunset-inspired aura nail moment à la Megan Fox is sure to be a total vibe for the summer months to come.

Barbiecore Aura

A Barbie-inspired pink aura with some invisible French details? Yes, please.

Aura Eyeshadow Hack

ICYMI: Eyeshadow is the understated hero product when it comes to nail art hacks — and TBH, it may just be the secret to the easiest aura nails *ever.*

Aura Nails, Meet Chrome

Create that Y2K vibe on your aura nails with some on-trend chrome detailing.

Glitter Aura

Kandalec shares her easy tips for creating glitter aura nails at-home with a mini makeup sponge.

Little Auras Everywhere

More aura colors than one? Try creating multiple aura dots on each nail (with some bedazzled gem stones to amp up the glam totally optional).

Soft Girl Aura

A TikTok nail art trend that originates from Korea, blush nails make it appear as if your nail beds are flushed.

Vampy Aura

Surprisingly, dark nail polish hues are trending for summer (for manicures and pedicures). Kandalec says: “I always love a dark and light tone combo to really help the gradient look stand out.”

Colorful Aura

Decorate your nails with a different aura hue on each nail and some stark white dots for a truly unique set.

Gemstone Halo

Create a halo effect with some 3D nail gems at the center of each aura.