Nail Polish Hair Clips Tutorial

As a ‘Magpie On A Budget’, I’ve become very good at sourcing things to make my life beautiful at a reasonable price. I enjoy being creative, and thought I’d try my hand at making my own hair clips. These can be incredibly cheap and easy to make, even if you don’t consider yourself ‘crafty’, I would say have a go anyway!

I use the site AliExpress for everything. Seriously, I’m somewhat addicted, it’s got everything on there and free shipping too from lots of sellers. The shipping can be slow, and sometimes the quality is pretty crap, but pretty much everything I’ve bought has absolutely exceeded expectations, at a very cheap price. There are some caveats, as with any e-commerce site. The clothes sizes are extremely tiny, which to be honest is fine with me, but most people I know don’t have much luck on there, you do need to check sizes carefully. Anything ‘brand-name’ is going to be fake. And I’m wary of things like electronics, makeup, etc too. But I’ve had great success buying clothes for myself, jewellery, craft items and general bits and pieces. In fact, I’m doing an upcoming post on my makeup storage and dresser set-up which features lots of AliExpress stuff!


My August Giveaway features two sets of hair clips I made using my AliExpress haul, so feel free to enter that and win yourself some! (New Zealand only, sorry).

I bought an assortment of craft things awhile ago including:

Rhinestone Diamantes (as featured in the butterfly hairclips above)

Antique Bronze Hair Clip Settings (the bases you make the hair clips on)

Artificial Black Roses 

Dragonfly Cabochons (a cabochon is a little plastic/glass dome with a flatback that you can glue onto things)

Butterfly Cabochons

Black Rose Cabochons (I bought 10mm, the same size as the hair clip pads, but there are different sizes to choose from)

There are tons of sellers all selling the same stuff, so shop around! Most offer free shipping with orders over $10/15 USD.


I took two of the Blue Rose cabochons and decided to use them as a basis to paint with nail polish. I first painted them with a thick coat of black (Revlon ‘Knockout’, but you can use any black polish. You may need two coats if the coverage is light). Then I painted over with a few thinner coats of orange nail polish (Mode ‘Frenemy’, but experiment with any colour you like! You could also try glitter or shatter, etc, on top). Wait patiently for each coat to dry – now isn’t that always the hard part!

The next step, once the polish was dry (if you can, leave it for several days), I used craft glue to stick the flatback of the cabochon onto the pad of the hairpin. Did you know that bobby pins are meant to have the jagged bit facing down in your hair, rather than up? So actually these hairpins are ‘backwards’, but hey, it doesn’t matter!

Wait for glue to dry and… DONE! Not sure if matching your hair clips to your nail polish is cute or a bit weird, but I like it. 🙂

I also painted some of my roses with glitter nail polish (Nicole by OPI’s “Follow Me on Glitter” – this nail polish doesn’t work well on my nails and is so hard to remove, I’ll just stick to using it for crafts), for a future project. I’m not entirely sure what I’m doing with them yet, it was just an idea I had but it’s not going anywhere yet. May even just scatter a few on my dresser, if I don’t end up attaching them to hair ties.




This flower had a stray petal on one side, which I carefully cut off

All items in this tutorial were purchased by myself, I am not affiliated with AliExpress and did not receive any compensation for this post. No affiliate links have been used. 


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