I’ve always seen DIY nail polish marbling crafts online and wanted to try it out so I finally gave it a whirl.

For Earth Day this year, I wanted to use earth inspired colors to nail polish marble paint a rock.

First – gather your nail polish marbling supplies:

  • A container with water you plan to throw out!  It will get icky with polish.
  • Nail polish
  • Nail polish remover for clean-up
  • Toothpick or skewer to mix polish
  • Round shape rocks (smooth beach pebbles work best)
  • Plate to allow rocks to dry 

Nail polish marbling is super easy, but I have to warn you – TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE!

The nail polish dries quickly once it hits the water, you have just a few seconds to arrange the colors and dip!  In the photo below you can see the colors I placed on the water and you can see the edge of the polish already starting to dry.  

It seemed to me that even if the edges dried a bit the marbling still was pretty effective.

All you need to do is add a few drops of nail polish to the surface of the water – use the stick to mix or swirl them if you’d like and IMMEDIATELY dip your rock. 

You can submerge the rock slowly or you can roll the surface of the rock along the top of the water – experiment and see which technique you like the most.

*WARNING: Your fingers will be coated with polish too 😉 so wear gloves if you want to prevent having to clean your fingers with polish remover!

If you don’t like how the paint looks on the rock – quickly wipe it off when you remove it from the water.

It won’t all come off, but it will dry quickly and allow you to dip it again.  Also if polish does not adhere to any parts of the rock, you can dip it again.

To create the effect you see on my rock – first I did a layer of blues and green and set it aside to dry.

Next, I dropped just a couple of drops of white polish on the water and dipped the rock to add the “atmosphere” layer we see when looking at the earth from space.   

Once the rock dried, I added a coating of Mod Podge to make it shine a bit more and seal in the polish.


That’s all there is to it!  I see endless possibilities with this craft and I will definitely try it again with other objects.

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