The two biggest well known crystal brands, Swarovski and Preciosa, have been manufacturing crystal rhinestones for many years, over 100 in Swarovski’s case, launching new and exciting products every couple of years or so. Whether it’s the production of a new colour, shape or crystal style, these two giants of the crystal world are always keeping things fresh, innovative and exciting.

But what happens to the old stones when new ones are released? There are hundreds of thousands of vintage Swarovski and Preciosa crystal gems out there, ready to be sewn onto a garment, hung up on a chandelier in a grand hotel, or just waiting patiently to be set into a Cartier watch.

Here at Crystal Parade HQ, we’ve recently taken a very sparkly delivery of vintage crystals, some dating back to the 1950’s and others that are no longer being produced, so very rare indeed. From Swarovski crystal rings, pendant drops and fancy stones, to Preciosa frosted shells, opals and cabochons, we have a hoard of rare and beautiful pieces that are sure to catch the eye.

Vintage crystals within nail art

A recent trend found in the nail art industry is using 3D chunky embellishments to create a statement nail, focal point or feature in the design. Preciosa pointy back crystals and fancy stones are ideal for this at they can be easily applied with Crystal Fix glue, and come in a myriad of shapes, sizes and colours, enabling the technician to create fun designs and patterns. The introduction of vintage crystals, opals and cabochons have really brought this trend to life – the creative possibilities are endless!

Let’s take a look at how some of the biggest names in the nail art industry are using Swarovski and Preciosa vintage stones:

Scarlett Senter Welcome To scarlett

In this stunning depiction of a woodland hedgehog, Scarlett has managed to create texture, depth and certainly an eye catching piece to wow her clients. The nail is fully embellished with Emerald non hotfix rhinestones, and the main feature of the spikes are made using Swarovski vintage slim navettes in Smoked Topaz.

This beautiful cluster of round pointy back crystals are a stunning focal point of Scarlett’s ombre design. She’s teamed vintage Swarovski Rose Water Opal with pale blues, golds and silver caviar beads to create a standout feature on the nail.

Lauren McBride GEL POLISH – Lauren McBride Nail Artist

Lauren’s beautiful winter inspired angel is made using Preciosa vintage frosted fans and white navette cabochons, with Swarovski silk chatons and rose gold caviar beads in between to complete the look. The frosted fans are a particular favourite among nail artists as they offer a gorgeous shape and make a statement without being too blingy. They can also be incorporated into other designs such as a mermaid’s tale, flower, art deco or art nouveau inspired patterns.

Natalie Mugridge Natalie Mugridge ✨Nail Artist✨ (@natmugnailartist) • Instagram photos and videos

This simple design by Natalie Mugridge focusses on the floral element in subtle shades of pink. The navette cabochons are flatback and can be easily applied to the nail using Crystal Fix glue. They have a smooth domed finish and the pretty eye shape look stunning when used to make flowers.

But bespoke nail art isn’t the only use for Swarovski and Preciosa vintage crystals, Natalie has put hers to good use on this perfume bottle!

Nail art & beauty