How to Play Violin With Long Nails

Long nails can hamper your ability to play violin. Playing the violin with long nails is not recommended since it will affect your ability to use your fingers properly to play individual strings. Depending on the length of your nails, you may touch other strings while playing. If you must play with long nails, there are some modifications to your playing style you can make. It is possible to play the violin with long nails even though it is highly discouraged.

Step 1

Use the bow as your normally would. The length of your fingernails will not affect your ability to use the bow.

Step 2

Play the violin strings by using the pads of your fingers. While it's possible to play this way, it will make it more difficult for you from playing difficult passages.

Step 3

Perform with the tips of your fingers when playing the E string. Since the E string is the highest string and on the edge of the violin, you should be able to play normally on this string.

Step 4

Consider using artificial nails if you must keep your nails long. By using fake nails, you can remove them before you have to play the violin. Although, this is a bit counterproductive since playing the violin requires daily practice.


Consider switching to the cello. The strings are further apart, and your nails will have less of an impact on your playing.


If you play the violin professionally, you may need to make a choice between your playing and your nails. It is simply not possible to compete in the music industry if your fingernails are so long that they prevent you from performing well.


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