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Bubble nails: The new trend that's taking over the Internet

Women are going beyond experimenting with colors and designs and are now playing with the actual shape of their nails.
/ Source: TODAY

The latest nail trend is surprising to say the least. Women are going beyond experimenting with colors and designs to play with the actual shape of their nails with 3D "bubble nails."

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So, what exactly do bubble nails look like? Somewhat similar to what your fingers might look like after getting jammed in a car door and swelling like crazy. Or, if you stuck your nails in crazy glue and then straight into a bowl full of gumballs.

While bubble nails are recently trending, they're not exactly new. In 2009, NAILS magazine published a post about the possibility of it becoming a popular style. About six years later, the trend has finally caught on, with thousands of Instagram posts under the #bubblenails hashtag.

"It was prevalent five or six years ago, right at the beginning of nail art, but it never gained popularity," celebrity nail artist Pattie Yankee told

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According to Yankee, bubble nails are essentially acrylics with a much greater thickness than normal. To achieve the look, a nail technician places a ball (or multiple balls) of acrylic at the center of the nail and builds it out by adding layers.

While acrylics are typically applied as thinly as possible, this look is all about the bulk. But because the application creates such a heavy layer, Yankee warns the acrylic may be more prone to falling off.

"The point is to make it pop more," said Yankee, who explained that she often had clients ask for an accentuation of their natural hump in the '80s, but never this exaggerated.

For DIY aficionados, skipping the salon isn't an option with this look and the service often comes with a hefty price tag. Yankee said that she wouldn't be surprised if salons charge an additional $10 to $15 on top of a normal acrylic treatment since it requires a higher skill level and technique.

It's also not something that is taught in nail school, so technicians must teach themselves through online tutorials and experimentation.

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And it's not just bubble nails that are trending; so-called "hump nails" are also having a moment. The two look similar on the surface, but the difference has everything to do with nail length. Bubble nails keep the nail bed short while hump nails have a more elongated shape (though a pointy or square end can appear on either).

Yankee advised that hump nails are likely safer for the nail plate because the ball of acrylic can be centered on the natural stress points.

"If done properly it would be safe as long as it's not worn for a long period of time. I would wear for at the most a month and then switch to a regular style," said Yankee.

While some people love their bubble nails, others are definitely more skeptical of the trend.

Instagram user @mermissues captioned this photo, "Gross #bubblenails. They look like bad burns on the end of your fingers that have been coloured in. #girlsworld#nowayno #beauty #trend gone mad!"

Instagram user @danceswithwolvesss posted, "Why are these a thing? They look like freaking marbles. #bubblenails are disgusting."

We'll have to wait and see if this trend kicks off. In the meantime, tell us what you think!