04/11/2012 07:34 am ET | Updated Oct 11, 2012

DIY Nail Art: Polka Dot Gradient Manicure

As I write this, my desk is covered in pastel nail polishes, including OPI and Essie's latest take on spring's sweet hues. Plus, Dolce & Gabbana, Thakoon and Chanel have mixed up nail polishes in shades of mint, lemon, lilac, peach and pink. And if I needed another good reason to take a break from sporting neon manicures, I just stumbled on this DIY nail art on the blog Holy Manicures (which reminds me of the beaded ice cream Dippin' Dots).

Photos: Cotton Candy Dippin' Dots Ice Cream,; Essie Mint Candy Apple; China Glaze Secret Peri-winkle; OPI Lucky Lucky Lavender; Holy Manicures' polka dot gradient manicure.

To get the look, first cover the area below the cuticles with Scotch tape to make cleanup easier. File nails into your desired shape and apply a base coat. Starting closely to the cuticle, paint on two coats of Essie Mint Candy Apple. Next add a block of China Glaze Secret Peri-winkle, blending softly at the edge of the mint shade. Then polish on a strip of OPI Lucky Lucky Lavender at the tips. Once completely dry, use a white nail art polish like Konad Special White (it's formulated to adhere without running as easily as traditional polishes) to stamp on the polka dots using Konad Stamping Image Plate M60. Finish by removing tape and sealing the nail art with a fast-drying top coat.

What do you think of this polka dot gradient manicure? Would you wear it? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section.

Meanwhile, check out 14 ways to get pastels right.

Click through the slideshow below for more DIY nail art.

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DIY Nail Art

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