Image Credit: Stephanie Yeboah

The Best Holiday Nail Colors That Are Festive Without Being Obnoxious

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Besties! #HOLIDAYSZN is quickly approaching, which can only mean the following: chunky knit blankets, Christmas movie marathons, and holiday nails. As an ex-nail biter who had hobbit claws for hands for the largest part of my life (before quitting the habit and finally growing out my nails; love to see it!), I’m super excited to finally be able to participate in some of the hottest nail trends of the year, with the holiday nail trend being my absolute favorite!

It may be getting dark and frosty, but the holidays are officially on their way, which means it’s time to get cozy and lean into some of the hottest colors of the season, including rich chocolates, pumpkin oranges, forest greens, and cranberry sauce reds. 

When it comes to nail art, feel free to skip the snowmen, candy canes, Thanksgiving turkeys, and cornucopias if they give you the ick. If you’re a bit more of a minimalist, there are loads of ways to jazz up your nails to give a subtle nod to the holidays, from frosted “snowflake” neutral shades to candy cane french manicure tips. 

Here are some of our favorite holiday nail trends to get you inspired:

Pumpkin Spice

A woman showing off her burnt orange manicure.
Image Credit: Stephanie Yeboah

We’re starting the holiday season off with the perfect shade that encapsulates the end of fall and start of winter: burnt orange. Not only do pumpkin shades signify major Halloween vibes, but it also exudes a quiet, sophisticated luxury that still stays true to the heart of the holiday and this time of year.

OPI Nail Lacquer Silicon Valley Girl

Gingerbread Delight

Image Credit: Instagram / @ladynail_italia

Natural, warm, and full of festive spice, gingerbread nails are a subtle nod to the holiday trend while still keeping it cute and subtle. You could go all out with the nail art by painting on gingerbread men for cute, showstopping nails, or you could go the ombre route, painting each nail a lighter brown color until you reached a warm eggshell shade. 

OPI Endless Sun-ner

Mini Candy Cane Treats

A manicure with little candy canes one the middle and ring finger
Image Credit: Instagram / @nails_by_daniellekatie

What says Christmas better than candy canes? You can interpret this holiday trend by sticking to a simple red and white striped French manicure, or go colorful and bold by having a mint nail base with candy cane art drawn on top; a peppermint paradise!

Sally Hansen Nail Art Pen in White

Velvet Greens

a woman showing off her green nails
Image Credit: Instagram / @nailsbyrae__

It’s all about setting the regal tone for this gorgeous, holiday-inspired cat-eye set. This rich, earthy Christmas tree-inspired jewel-toned green is perfect for the winter months, with the cat-eye glitter adding the festive sparkle. 

ILNP Green Holographic Ultra Chrome Nail Polish

Opulent Snow Globe

Image Credit: Instagram // @sarahbland

The icy white sparkle is absolutely perfect if you want a nod to the holidays while keeping it chic and simple. Metallics, chrome, and glitter have been huge trends for most of 2023, and all three textures can be used to make this festive snowy look. 

AILLSA White Glitter Gel Nail Polish

Cable-Knit Latte Evenings

Image Credit: Instagram // @nailhart_

The cable knit nail trend has been HUGE for the last couple of years, and 2023 isn’t any different. Coffee-rich tones are set to transcend the seasons and make quite the appearance for the holiday manicure this year. You can add subtle accents inspired by nature such as leaf patterns, and play with different latte shades to find your perfect tone. Think dark chocolates, creamy hot cocoa, rich caramel, and white chocolates. we’re hungry…

essie expressie vegan quick-dry nail polish

Timeless Reds

Image Credit: Instagram // @dujgunails

You just can’t go wrong with the traditional red manicure set! When it comes to holiday nail colors, there’s no escaping the charm of classic reds. Just like holly berry red or Santa Claus’ suit, these shades are a true representation of the Christmas season. Whether you prefer a deep, velvety red or a bright, cheerful crimson, red polish is the perfect way to add a pop of holiday cheer to your nails. 

Sally Hansen Miracle Gel Nail Color

Stephanie Yeboah
Stephanie Yeboah
Stephanie Yeboah is a London-based writer, author, and content creator with a penchant for expensive candles, Pedro Pascal, Harry Potter trivia...and Pedro Pascal. A loving Mother to 36 houseplants and counting, Steph can be found on IG over at @stephanieyeboah or on her blog .