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Hailey Bieber has brought glazed doughnut nails back yet again – here’s how to recreate them

We tried two glow-getting methods to achieve the trending nail look

Lauren Cunningham
Tuesday 26 March 2024 12:53 GMT
We’ve even found a dupe for the polish that only professional nail techs can get their hands on
We’ve even found a dupe for the polish that only professional nail techs can get their hands on (iStock/ Instagram Hailey Bieber/ The Independent)

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Louise Thomas

Louise Thomas


Hailey Bieber is a regular muse for classic style, whether in fashion with her signature crop tops and jeans, her no-make-up make-up and her viral manicure trend – glazed doughnut nails – which she has shared yet again on Instagram, putting it back to the forefront of our minds. And, never one to gatekeep, both Bieber and her nail technician, Zola, have shared tutorials on TikTok.

Although, we were grateful for both of these videos, any eagle-eyed fan may have spotted that they aren’t the same – and not just because they were filmed separately.

Both tutorials use OPI nail lacquer – a slightly thicker, more durable version of nail polish – but while Zola opts for an almost white shade “funny bunny”, Hailey goes for a much more nude-toned “pale to the chief”, which gave us some investigating to do.

For anyone not yet familiar, glazed doughnut nails are a slightly sheer neutral nail colour with a shimmery finish that makes them look like, you guessed it, the glazing on a doughnut. What gives the nails this signature shine is the OPI chrome effect powder.

However, to make things just a little bit more difficult, the OPI chrome powders are only available for professional nail techs. But, fear not, for in true IndyBest style – and thanks to some insider tips from the OPI team – we have found a near-perfect solution, and it’s much easier than you think.

How we tested

There are a few ways to recreate the glazed doughnut nail look for non-professionals like us. Firstly, opt for all of the products in classic polish or lacquer versions rather than gel (unless you have a nail lamp at home) and secondly, find an alternative for the OPI “tin man can” chrome effect powder.

We did just that, following Zola’s tutorial on one hand and Hailey’s on the other to compare the two for ease. And despite our nails being short and stubby, and our hands definitely not having the model look of Mrs Bieber’s, we were still pretty chuffed with the end result.

The method and products used

Zola’s method

Zola opts for almost white shade “funny bunny” (middle)
Zola opts for almost white shade “funny bunny” (middle) (Lauren Cunningham)

We started with Zola’s method and used the above products to recreate the look.

As we would with any regular nail polish routine, we started by applying one layer of the base coat before following it up with one coat of funny bunny – though as a helpful hint, be sure to shake the bottle first as this can come out streaky. We then applied one coat of the base coat again.

After waiting for everything to be almost dry, here’s where our ingenious substitute for the “tin man can” chrome effect powder came into play. With a short, wide eyeshadow brush, we loaded up the Lottie London diamond bounce highlighter onto the brush, tapping it down to remove any clumps and softly brushed it onto the nails.

Top tip: If the polish starts to break or pull, it’s not quite dry enough so leave it another minute or so before continuing. Then, once covered in the pearlescent dust, we added one layer of the top coat and left it to dry before moving on to our other hand.

Hailey’s method

Hailey went for a nude-toned hue called “pale to the chief” (middle)
Hailey went for a nude-toned hue called “pale to the chief” (middle) (Lauren Cunningham)

Hailey’s method is very similar to Zola’s, but it uses a little hack we’d not seen before.

Instead of applying the base coat first, we grabbed a square of tin foil and combined a small blob of the base coat with the polish in pale to the chief, mixing the two together to create a more sheer product. This was easy enough to do, but we did end up having a lot of leftover product on the tin foil at the end, and it does dry incredibly fast too.

After the nails had dried, we then went in with another layer of the base coat and, as above, waited for it to be nearly dry before gently brushing on the highlighter powder, finishing off with a slick of the top coat.

The results

Funny bunny is on our left hand and pale to chief is on our right
Funny bunny is on our left hand and pale to chief is on our right (Lauren Cunningham)

As you can see, the two looks are incredibly similar, the funny bunny on the left hand is just brighter, whiter and more pearlescent than pale to the chief on the right hand. But if we had to rate them on the ease of recreating them alone, Zola’s method would win.

While neither was too difficult to do – as long as you’re patient and take the time to wait for each coat to dry, we learnt this the hard way – the amount of product wasted and the time restriction when mixing the polish and base coat was definitely less than ideal.

The verdict: Glazed doughnut nails

We couldn’t fault the Lottie London diamond bounce highlighter as a replacement for the OPI “tin man can” chrome effect powder. But for those after an even simpler method, you can also mix down the OPI nail lacquer kyoto pearl with a base coat in a similar way to Hailey’s tutorial to get a shiny finish on top of any other colour. It isn’t quite the same effect as the highlighter, but if in a pinch, it can work.

So, now we know the best method to recreate the look at home, you can expect to see us rocking this style for many months to come. And we may even start to experiment with other powdered beauty products in a similar way.

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