Winter Gel Nail Design with Jewels

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I love simple gel nail polish designs, but I am never above added bling. 🙂 This is the first time I have ever added jewels to a gel polish manicure and I have to say, I love it! I love this winter nail design with jewels because it has muted colors (perfect for winter), glitter (always makes me happy), AND it has jewels!!

Winter Gel Nail Designs with Jewels

I did this gel nail design by starting with a base with 3 coats of IBD Iceberg. Then, I did the glitter gradient with IBD Polar Sky. I started brushing on the glitter at the cuticle, then slowly lifted up the brush as I got closer to the top of the nail. I did another coat and did the same thing, but stopped brushing farther away from the top. Since IBD Polar Sky has a sheer gray base, rather than a clear base, it was a little tricky to get the gradient to look right. It did take some effort, but I think the finished product turned out great! Then, I added the jewels.

Winter Gel Nail Designs with Jewels

It was pretty easy to add the jewels to my gel nail design. Here’s what I did:

Add Jewels to a Gel Manicure

  • I cleaned my base of IBD Iceberg and IBD Polar Sky with an alcohol wipe.
  • I used my finger to pick up the jewel I wanted. (Not the best method). I just pushed on the jewel with my finger until the jewel stuck to my finger.
  • While jewel was on my finger, I dipped a toothpick into Gelish foundation, then dabbed a bit of the foundation from the toothpick onto the jewel.
  • Then, I pressed the jewel onto my nail.
  • I used a clean toothpick to arrange the jewel into just the spot I wanted.
  • I cured the nail for 30 seconds in an LED lamp.
  • Finally, I covered the entire nail with Gelish Top It Off, but I didn’t cover the entire jewel. I made sure the Top It Off went around the base of the jewel and up the sides a little, but I didn’t cover the whole jewel with the top coat because I wanted the jewel to shine as much as possible.
  • I cured the nail for 30 seconds in an LED lamp.
  • Of course, I finished off by wiping the tacky layer with an alcohol wipe.

*These instructions are specifically for adding jewels to a gel polish manicure. No idea what that is, see my Gel Polish F.A.Q. which explains what a gel polish manicure is and check out How to Do Gel Nails At Home.

I got these jewels from the dollar store. Yes, I’m fancy like that. This was the first time I have ever added jewels to a manicure so I wanted to make sure I liked it before I spent any real money on jewels. Now that I have done this mani, though, I can safely say I LOVE it! I’d love some recommendations for where to buy jewels for manicures. These dollar store ones are a little dull. I’m thinking these or these. What do you think?

I’d love to follow you on instagram! I can’t get enough of cute nails. Follow me (@whatthegelnails) and I’d love to follow you back. Any gel questions? Message me on facebook or email me at

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Hi, I'm Kirstylee. I'm a wife, mom, and lover of all things gel polish. I started this blog to share my knowledge and make new friends. :)