From inch-long, filed-to-a-point talons to glittering, bejeweled tips, these days, nail art has become a major part of beauty culture, and the mani/pedi boom years also mean that professional manicures have become more affordable than ever. Whether you’re a devoted nail salon customer or an at-home polisher, trying out new nail trends is a fun way to explore your wild side.
"There are no rules to nails anymore,” says Jodi Richard, lead nail technician and spa manager at Scarborough’s Salon in Lake Charles. "Nail polish doesn't have to match your lipstick. Your toes don't have to match your fingernails, just as long as they coordinate.”
Here are a few ways to incorporate some of the hottest trends from the 2017 runways into your own manicure.
From florals to plaids, even stripes and hearts, designers are obsessed with the patterned manicure for spring. Though it can be pricey to find a manicurist willing to etch tiny flowers into your fingernails, there are plenty of at-home products that give salon-quality results with a little practice. Websites like Amazon have a huge selection of nail stickers that can be worn alone or over polish and go on with minimal mess. For the more advanced home manicurist, nail art pens are fine-point pens with "ink” that dries like nail polish for more complicated designs.
Matte lipstick, foundation, and eye shadows have been all the rage for at least five years, but when it comes to nails, many designers seem to be getting bored with the low-shine look. Designers like Phillip Lim and Marchesa went with lightly metallic looks, giving nails just a touch of silver and gold glimmer. To give nails a metallic gleam without going full on heavy metal, try metallic nail powder, which is brushed on after a top coat and dries to a gleaming finish.
In recent years, celebrities like Katie Perry have sported some seriously sharp-looking fake nails filed to a pointed tip. By the looks of runway 2017, those talon-like tips seem to be over. More rounded nail tips are usually a better alternative, according to Richard. "In my experience, natural nail shapes will always be the classy way to go.”
Geometric French Manicures
The 90s are back in full swing, style-wise, and that means the re-emergence of the French manicure, in a manner of speaking. The updated version is more angular than the original using white strips to break up the "negative space” (or flesh-colored) part of the nail, so today’s French manicures may be overlaid with triangles at the tips or even squares. Designer Rebecca Minkoff took the trend one step further by opting for pink and red French manicures and alternating between pink and red tips in a random pattern.
A new nail color is the easiest way to add a little pizazz to a standard, everyday look, according to Richard. "Having nicely manicured hands and feet can definitely elevate your style. Your color choices say who you are whether you are bold, sassy, or classy. Nails are just as important as a necklace and earrings. They complete the look.”