Friday, 9 September 2011

My First Ever YouTube Water Marble

I've finally mastered the technique of water marbling. WOOHOO!!
It's not the first time I've ever done it, and no I don't think I'm very good at it, but I've practiced loads and failed so many times.

Here are pictures of my first success. Obviously I didn't match both my hands...

After months of watching these awesome YouTubers make it look so easy I've finally found a way of doing it myself. Here are some things I have learnt...


The water works best if it is room temperature. You can achieve this by leaving it in the room for a few hours or overnight. Some people can use tap water but where I live is a hard water area and we have lead pipes so our tap water is crap for marbling. I tried it with Evian bottled water and it was better but still came out all lumpy on most of my nails. Finally, I invested in a Brita Water Filter for £17 at The Range [pink one, yay!] and that was perfect! Filtered water works best for me.


I have a zillion different brands and there isn't a specific brand I would say works better than others it was just a case of trial and error. Some polishes spread well, some don't spread at all. I've heard that China Glaze is one of the best for marbling but I only have two CG polishes and I didn't want a pink and orange marble. I found that the thinner, slower drying polishes work best. If you take the brush out of the bottle and the polish almost slides off the brush like water or drips really easily, then it'll probably marble very well. The thick, gloopy polishes that hardly drip probably won't spread at all. Sometimes if you've got one that spreads perfectly and one that's not so good then you can mix them together, because the spreadable one will push the other one out.


I paint all my nails white because the marbled polishes come out quite thin so the white makes it pop. You could paint nails a different colour for a completely different look, but I stuck with white :) I put tape [very messy tape] around my fingers and stuck it as close to the nail as possible to make clean up easier. I used lip balm last time cos you can just wipe it off, but you have to wipe it off straight away or it will go hard all over your fingers - too much mess while doing nails. So I think the tape method is much cleaner.


I used a small bowl - the smaller the container, the less polish you use - but the pattern will also be smaller so there's less chance you'd be able to do 3-4 nails at once.

To make the marble pattern I used a toothpick/cocktail stick. Some people use a dotting tool or a pin or needle. I've tried them all and they work the same in my experience as long as you wipe it off between each drag - if you don't then the pattern will have ugly lumps in it.

For cleaning up the polish on the water surface, this makes a huge mess on the stick so I use cotton buds for this cos I can just throw them away straight after rather than having a massive fat orange stick with ten tons of gloopy polish over it!

I used a flat brush [small one] with acetone to clean around the cuticles afterwards. This is easier than using cotton buds cos you can be more precise and there's less chance of touching the nail and ruining the design.

If there are any small bubbles on the nail [this happens a lot] you can pop them gently with a pin. If they look too obvious you can always touch them up with the polish and a toothpick. I make sure to get rid of all bubbles before topcoat because if they're still there then they can drag under the topcoat [even Seche Vite!] and that's a pain in the ass!

**Another tip I may add - a suggestion from ARPIANNINNI :

STYROFOAM CUPS ARE NOT GOOD for water marbling.
Nail polish melts them. So if you have a drop sink down to the bottom, the cup will get a hole and you'll have a big seeping pool of nail polish water all over your desk. Yup.

Use plastic, glass or paper cups. They're safe as houses.

Here's the video - surprisingly easy to film!

I absolutely love the way it looks - not mine specifically, just the effect of water marbling on nails it just looks amazing. I'm so happy with these and hope to improve and make more videos on it. I think they might be more than just marbles though... I get bored easily.

Ever noticed I don't have an intro in my vids?

Yeah. Don't want one. Would change it all the time.

Here's my lazy left handed design...

Anyway that will be all for today

xx Love you guys xx


  1. They turned out beautifully! I was so into this a couple months ago, but recently moved and had been using tap water and it had worked fine for me, but now that I'm living in a different state and they have city water here it's impossible to do unless I have purified water.

  2. Do you have to make a new design in the water after you do one nail in it or do you reuse he design instead of brushing it away? Do you use fake nails?

  3. What works better real nails or fake ones?

    1. It doesn't matter if you have real or fake nails, the design will look the same.

  4. I'm glad I found your blog, I've tried like 5 or 6 days in a row to do it and spent lots of money in polish and now I know it could be the water, it could be thepolish, but it wasn't actually me :D really... THNKS! Also... your designs are A-W-E-S-O-M-E!

  5. Thank you for taking the time to post tips and videos on how to. I am gonna try the flame one today. *fingers crossed* <before nail polish is applied of course.

  6. Another don't could be absolutely DON'T use a foam cup as your water container the polish melt the foam so you'll end with a huge mess trust me I learn this the hard hard way (sight)

    1. Actually that's a great tip, thankyou :)
      I've not tried foam cups but I've recently heard that has happened to a few girlies. Not pretty, lol.
      I'll add it in there now :) xx

  7. that is so cool!
    but when i tried it the
    nail polish wouldnt spread!
    please tell me how to
    get it to spread! ;(

    1. The reason why I wrote this entire post was to answer questions like this.
      I don't really know what else to advise because I wrote all my tips and tricks for getting the polish to spread IN this post xx

  8. use a dotting tool or a toothpick or whatever and draw circles in the water around the polish until it spreads. it works, just tried it some days ago. just my design didn't... ;D
    got this hint from some other youtube-nail-girl (cutenails/tartofraises1, hope i'm allowed to mention her...)

  9. I want to know what brand of nail polish is best with making the marble??
    I really got frustrated that when i dip my nail polish into the water, it doesn't spread at all, just little circle in there.. :(((

  10. I have recently been trying this and realised that,for me anyway,I can't pull in from the very first line of polish,I have to go in from the second or third line as it just drags the whole thing in otherwise. Great blog and vids,thanks!

  11. Thank you so much for that tip! It IS my nail polish. They're THICK (pun intended) and mess up my water marble regardless of the kind of water I use! Now I know why. Thanks again :)