This week we caught Whitney Gibson, a traveling celebrity and editorial nail artist based in Los Angeles. Represented by Nailing Hollywood, Gibson has had the pleasure of working with celebs such as Ariana Grande, Giuliana Rancic, Rita Ora, Tinashe and Kat Graham.

The Trend: A favorite design on and off the runway, rainbow foil nails provide the perfect amount of metallic shine, color, and texture for your digits. With this nail art trend, thankfully for us mere mortals, haphazard application is smiled upon and can even lead to some cool abstract designs. As sun-filled days become the norm, we can already imagine how pretty flecks of foil will look as the light catches them.

Read on as Whitney Gibson gives us details on her foil nail creation and her journey to becoming a nail artist.

EBONY: What inspired the design and how was it created?

Whitney Gibson: This design was actually inspired by the packaging on Tarte’s Blissful Cheek Stain case (see above). I loved the colors, so I used the polish and foil from Ciate’s Kaleidoscopic Klash manicure set to create the abstract floral motif. In my work, I favor designs that are less literal and more like a textile—like another fabric in your outfit. I like things that read well from far away, and lately I’ve been really into simple, clean designs.

EBONY: How did you become a nail artist?

WG: At first, I just did my own nails. I had this obsession with having the perfect manicure and would change my nails almost every day. Then I started experimenting with nail art. I think leopard print was my first foray into nail art (my gateway drug). I was working at a hotel in downtown LA, and my coworkers and guests of the hotel would always notice my nails and tell me I should pursue a career in the field.

At first I resisted, because I pictured myself working at a salon. But then my friends who work in the industry started asking me to do music videos and photo shoots. It was then I realized that I could have a satisfying career doing nails on set. I went to beauty school to get my manicurist license and the rest is history. 

EBONY: What do you feel is your artistic significance when it comes to nail art?

WG: I like to think that’s what I'm known for: pretty, simplistic designs that highlight my love for color theory. I also think I have a reputation for being fast. I recently did a shoot where I did several color changes in four minutes or less for each look. This might not seem like something to brag about, but in the world of photo shoots, it really is something to be proud of.  

Check out more designs by Whitney Gibson on Instagram @WhitneyGNails.

Loren Lee