Manicures with Meaning: How a Rabbi's Torah Designs Have Sparked a New Trend

When I was 9 I saved my allowance for an entire month so I'd have enough money to buy cute little butterfly nail decals that the girls at school had been flaunting. They were little more than eensy stickers that adhered to your nails, but they were new and funky and, in my fourth grade estimation, the height of sophistication.

It was a kinder, gentler time.

Fast forward more years than I'd care to cop to and the array of nail art options is downright dizzying. From embedded jewels to intricate designs to cracked/shattered patterns, these days, there's something for everyone. And, I mean everyone.

Related: The Best (and Worst!) Nail, Hair, and Makeup Trends of 2010

For proof, check out the latest craze to blip across my finely tuned nail-dar: the Torah Manicure. The brainchild of 26-year-old Rabbi Yael Buechler, the "Midrash Manicures" began as a teaching tool at her Jewish day school on New York's Long Island.

At these classes, the students draw tiny images on their nails to convey a story in the Torah. Each class starts with a Hebrew passage, then the students discuss its symbols and possible nail art options. And while some critics say it's a vain or eccentric way to teach the word of god, Buechler says, "Midrash Manicures is not about having the most beautiful manicure … it is about having the most meaningful manicure."

There's no question that nail art depicting the seven days of creation spanks hello kitty decals when it comes to spiritual value. But we'll let you be the judge. Would you do religious nail art?

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