How to Make Reusable Nail Stencils


Nail stencils are great for people who would like a manicure but don’t have the time or money for one, and they’re also perfect if you want to do something festive with your nails without having to buy any new polish colors. The best thing about them is that when they get old and don’t work anymore (which can happen after many uses), you throw them away! You’ll never need to worry about contaminating another surface again!

How To Make Reusable Nail Stencils

 This guide will help you on how to make reusable nail stencils right from your home. The best part is that they are cheap and easy to make! This tutorial goes into detail about creating them, what materials you need, and the steps involved.

Things you will need to make nail stencils

  • Scotch tape
  • Nail polish remover
  • Paper plates or recycled cardboard tubes
  • Pens, pencils, markers for drawing your design on the paper plate/cardboard tube and cutting out.

Steps to Follow for Making Reusable Nail Stencils

Lay the paper plate on a flat surface

  • Turn the paper plate upside down and place it on a flat surface.
  • Use one of your pens, pencils or markers to draw a design onto the top side of the paper plate.

Cut out around each nail shape with a Xacto knife

Place the pen vertically along one edge of the paper plate; rotate in quarter turns until you have made four slits for cutting out shapes from that half of the plate (three if you are making stencils for only three nails). Repeat this process on another half of the cardboard tube/paper plate to create all necessary stencil designs.

Paint your design with nail polish

Once cut, paint over the entire area with polish remover using either a cotton swab or toothpick.

Peel off each polish stencil

Once the polish has dried, carefully peel off each stencil to reveal a perfect painted image on your nails and another sheet of cardboard tube/paper plate ready for more designs!

Using scotch tape

  • Place the paper plate over your nail and press down so that it is snug. -Carefully, with a firm yet gentle grip, remove the paper plate from your nails while being careful not to smudge or lose any of your design in transit.
  • Repeat these steps as desired until you have created all necessary stencils. 

Using Different Layers in Nail Stencils

The best approach on how to make reusable nail stencils is by using different layers. This means that you can create one stencil and use it again on your nails without purchasing a new set of stickers each time.

The first layer should be made from cards or plastic so that the second layer can stick to it better. After this, add the sticker shapes that will fit into these outlines. Then apply another piece of card or plastics over them and poke holes in each sticker shape with a pin before peeling off both pieces together!

If you don’t have any other kind of material available for creating an additional protective cover for your adhesive sheets (plastic wrap doesn’t work), then try cutting out tiny ovals from extra gaffing tape with your nail scissors.

To peel off the stencils, you should take a piece of tape and stick it onto one corner on top of all layers. Then pull the cardboard or plastic up from this point before peeling off all pieces together.

Finally, use a strong adhesive like rubber cement (or glue) to create permanent ovals in place of stickers that can be used for future manicures as well! This way you’ll never have to buy new stencils again – just reposition them when they get old so they don’t lose their shape too quickly.

Tips & Tricks for Reusing Nail Stencils:

Seal the stencils with a stronger adhesive or sealant. Many of the ones on this list use nail polish, but you can also buy special glue meant for that purpose if needed. You can still reuse them by applying nail polish and using tape to remove excess paint from around the edges before sealing again. This technique will make it easier to reattach pieces after removing stickers too!

Benefits of Using Reusable Stencils:

  • They are more sanitary than reusable stickers. You can cover the nail with a fresh layer of polish after each use and then seal it to keep bacteria at bay.
  • It’s cheaper than buying new stencils all the time! Buy one or two packs for your favorite designs, and apply them as needed instead of having to buy an entirely new set every time you need something different. This is especially helpful if a design works on other parts such as toenails, too, because you won’t have to spend money on multiple sets just in case someone wants this style somewhere else!
  • They last longer when sealed properly


Making your reusable nail stencils is a great way to save money and have unique designs for each occasion. The process is easy, fun, and you can customize the design so that it’s perfect for you!
I hope you found this post helpful and informative. If you want to learn more about how to make reusable nail stencils, be sure to check out our blog for other DIY projects!

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