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 • Nails  • Design Ideas  • 35 of the Cutest Smiley Face Nail Designs to Release Your Inner Child
long nails with 3D smiley faces

35 of the Cutest Smiley Face Nail Designs to Release Your Inner Child

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Main Image – @jazzynailsx/instagram

It’s official. Smiley face nail designs are *huge* in 2024 – and we are so here for it.

The smiley face logo became popular in the 50s and 60s, leading to tens of thousands of variations.

From graphic designer Harvey Ball’s smiley created to boost employee morale at an insurance company, to being plastered all over our walls in the form of Blink 182s album artwork (IYKYK), and gracing the fingertips of Harry Styles – the smiley is a now a classic.

Whether you’re no stranger to getting your nails done at the salon or you prefer to take a night of self-care painting from the comfort of your own couch – there’s a smiley face nail design for you in our carefully created list.

We guarantee these will brighten up your look (and your day)!


1. Black and silver smiley face nails

A milky base is the perfect canvas for nail art, and these silver and black smiley faces still keep it classy.


2. Monochrome smiley face nails

This set combines a few trends – monochrome, colour blocks, checkered print and smiley faces. Nailed it.


3. Checkered nails with yellow smiley faces

A checkered twist on the classic neon yellow smiley.


4. Pink smiley mani with flowers

Pink and white are the perfect pair, IMO.


5. Pink and yellow stiletto nails with smiley faces and swirls

Pink nails look amazing in any shade (yep, I’m a real pink girly ATM), but hot pink and yellow melted smileys are just *perfect*.


6. Brown checkered nails with smiley faces

Brown nails are having a bit of a moment lately, add some checkerboard print and smileys and you’ve nailed a multitude of trends!


7. Yellow nails with silly freehand smiley faces

These are really different take on the smiley face trend – silly freehand faces that are really reminding me of the John Lennon logo.


8. Bright colourful swirl nails with flower smiley faces

The brightest set in the bunch, these nails are perfect for spring.


9. Orange and brown smiley face nails

A twist on the classic smiley face – anyone remember using these smiley faces on messages before we had emojis?! :]


10. Red and pink smiley face nails

Another Y2K smiley mani, this time in pink and red.


11. Bright pink nails with heart smiley faces

This mani proves you can turn basically any nail art into smileys!


12. Purple and pink ombre French tip nails with smiley faces

Combining ombre, Barbie pink, light purple, and cute smiley faces.


13. Multicoloured smiley faces on nude nails

If you love a colourful mani then this one’s for you.


14. Cute frog pattern smiley face nails

The clear base works perfectly on this mani, complete with classic hearts, smiling frogs and gems.


15. Red and pink heart smiley face nail design

The perfect romantic mani for Valentine’s Day.


16. Pink and blue smiley face nail designs

Pinks and purples paired with some nude glitter. So cute.


17. Happy/sad clown smiley nails with glitter

Smiley faces don’t always need to be, well, smiley!


18. Smiley faces and mismatched prints

I am seriously loving the mismatched nail trend that’s all over my feed at the moment, perfect for spring and summer.


19. Short nude nails with smiley faces

A muted neutral smiley face set.


20. Clear nails with yellow and silver smiley faces

They’re giving 90s Blink 182 vibes.


21. Monochrome gel nails with croc print and smiley faces

Croc print is everywhere at the moment, but if you don’t want to wear the print on every nail, incorporate some playful nail art like the set above.


22. Nude almond nails with 90s silver smiley faces

A nude nail is always a classic, and this tiny silver smiley is a fun addition to a chich mani.


23. Pastel melted smiley face nails

The perfect summer set.


24. Black French tip smiley face nail design

I love this take on the French manicure, using Black and adding smiley faces just on the tips.


25. Royal blue and white mismatched nails with smiley faces

They’re giving Mykonos.


26. Matte multicoloured ombre nails with smiley faces

A matte finish is a great way to update a mani.


27. Short nude nails with lime green smiley face feature nails

Prefer to do your nails at home?

Ciate London has got you with these cute and colourful smiley nail stickers that are super easy to use and can be applied to any kind of manicure (£16.00/$18.00 on the Ciate London website).


28. Long nails with 3D pastel smiley faces

3D nails are all over my feed at the moment, and this set is perfect for incorporating the trend.


29. Pink and green smiley face nail design

Pink and green is one of my favourite colour combos and looks so cute used on these smiley face nails.


30. Acrylic smiley face nails

Acrylics are a great way to add some length to your nails, making it even easier to go all out on the nail art!


31. Sky blue nails with daisy smiley face designs

A bright and breezy daisy mani with cute smiley faces.


32. Short oval multicoloured pastel smiley face nails

You don’t need long nails to have amazing nail art!


33. Natural nails with red and orange mismatched designs and smiley faces

A mix and match mani isn’t *quite* complete without smiley faces.


34. Chrome smiley face nail design

Chrome is still huge in the world of nails, and we aren’t complaining!


35. Pink and black square happy/sad smiley face nail design

The long square nails leave so much room for art and designs – the perfect canvas for some crazy smiley face prints!


The takeaway

Well, if that doesn’t cheer you up, we don’t know what will!

The smiley face trend is here for 2024 in the form of nail art and designs, t-shirt prints, interior design (yep, I’ve seen this all over my TikTok and it’s *so* cool), phone cases, and keyrings.

The 90s never really goes out of style (in my head, at least), so you’ll definitely nail the trend on this.


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Senior Beauty Editor

Laura Kemp started her journalism career as a news reporter for one of the largest newspaper groups in Europe before moving into features and editorial writing. Combining her love of hard-hitting journalism with her passion for beauty, she’s now Senior Beauty Editor at Live That Glow. When she’s not writing, researching, or interviewing her favourite experts, you’ll find Laura practicing her downward dog or drifting on her paddleboard.

Expertise: Hair care, nails
Education: University of Salford

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