The Best Summer Manicure Trends You Need To Try

For all my New York betches, I know you’re just as excited as me to know that Thursday is supposed to have perfect day drinking temperature (high 80’s) so Mother Nature, please don’t be psycho. For those of you somewhere on the west coast, you probably don’t care because this is your average weather but like, let us rejoice in this moment. The first solid week where it’s warm enough to go to a rooftop bar without a jacket basically means summer has officially arrived. You may think all you need is an artsy backdrop, pretty face with oversized sunglasses, and a colorful drink (that probably tastes like shit) to get 100,000 likes on Insta. Wrong. You are so wrong. You also need a fresh as fuck summer manicure holding that drink. Having sucky nail beds, bare nails, chipped nail polish—or worse: yellow nail polish—is honestly social suicide. This summer’s manicure trends are all about bright red shades, natural nudes, negative space nail art, and “cuticle jewelry” (yes, I swear this is a thing). These go a little beyond just “picking a color.”

1. Bright Red

This timeless color is going to be everywhere this summer. A perfect bright red such as Butter LONDON’s Come to Bed Red is just glamorous and sexual as its name suggests. This will add just the right amount of sass to any outfit in the summer. 

Butter London Come To Bed Red

Butter LONDON Come to Bed Red

2. Playful Pastels

Essie is loved by anyone who’s anyone, including many of the celebrities you follow on Instagram. The brand’s collections are highly anticipated and usually fly off shelves anywhere they’re sold. Essie’s summer 2017 collection is apparently so good, stores have already been selling the colors a month earlier than they were supposed to. The light-colored and metallic shades were inspired by the city of love/lights (whatever you want to call it): the one and only Paris. With names such as Éclaire My Love and S’il Vous Play, even if you don’t have a life travel the world this summer, these colors will look gorg with any calorie-loaded doughnut you’re holding. Au revoir, bitches.

Essie Summer 2017 Collection

3. Rose Gold

You love rosé just as much as the basic bitch next to you and you’re probably wearing a Michael Kors rose gold watch as we speak. So why wouldn’t you let your basic-ness hang out, loud and proud, with a rose gold mani? This is essential for all the rosé you’ll obvs be drinking at bottomless brunches.

Marc Jacobs Enamored Hi-Shine Nail Polish

Mark Jacobs Enamored Hi-Shine Nail Polish in Gatsby

4. Holographic Nails

If you think you’ve seen the last of the fucking unicorn trend, you have another thing coming to you. I’m saying this as if I didn’t just a buy a choker with a unicorn on it, but anyway, really let your unicorn guilty pleasure shine with a trippy af holographic nail. Try Urban Outfitters Hologram nail polish in silver. I’ve seen this mesmerizing color in person and it looks ah-maze.

Urban Outfitters Hologram Nail Polish

5. Negative Space Nail Art

This one is a little out there, but apparently it’s cool nowadays to rock a chipped nail design, as long as it looks fashionable and artsy. This is ideal if you’re trying to channel your inner hipster. If you are the Martha Stewart of nails, you can probably do this at home. However, if you’re like me and have the artistic ability of drawing stick figures, then ask a manicurist instead. This nail art consists of using nail tape to create minimalist images and painting in between the lines to create designs that end up looking like this:

Negative Space Nail Art

6. Cuticle Jewelry

I can’t even with this term, honestly. The idea is supposed to create an illusion that your cuticles are wearing jewelry such as a gold necklace or a fucking choker if you must. The pictures are pretty self-explanatory so if this is your thing, you do you, boo.

Cuticle Art

7. Au Naturale Nudes

For a clean, professional look, get a basic mani with a nude color. This is perfect if you only feel like doing the bare minimum (which is all the time), but still want to look classy and chic. Deborah Lippmann’s Undressed set comes with six colors that are great for any skin tone, whether it be trying a fair pink nude or a sable nude. Also, the next time you get a “send nudes” text, they obviously are talking about your nails.

Deborah Lipmann Undressed Set

Deborah Lippmann Undressed Nail Polish Set

8. Not A Regular Black, A Cool Black

If you still get unnecessary anxiety when you’re asked to pick a color, it’s okay to go for your usual black. But only if you spice it up a little by opting for a matte black or a shade of black with a color underlay, such as OPI’s Black Cherry Chutney.

Matte Black Manicure

Read: The Best Summer Haircut For Your Hair Texture
The 5 Stages Of Nail Regret, A Serious Condition Affecting Manicures Everywhere

This year one in five betches will be afflicted with Nail Regret. It’ll happen when they least expect it: before a wedding, on the way to a first date, after an especially good paycheck. They’ll look down at the manicure they just spent 12 whole wine bottle buying dollars on and think to themselves: “WTF I asked for peach not fucking PUMPKIN.” Tragic.

For those of you who aren’t aware, Nail Regret is the term used for when a betch fucks up regrets her nail color after a manicure. Emotionally, this ranks right up there with trying to respond to a fuckboy’s text message and coming to terms with the fact that cookie dough will give you salmonella. It can be hard to accept that it’s not Sasha your nail technician’s fault and that actually pastels just aren’t in your color wheel. But the first step towards acceptance is admitting you’re in the wrong—LOL, psych. As if.

I would rather stab myself in the eye with a blunt fork then say “you’re right” to Sasha about not being able to pull off orange PEACH. And because I’m assuming you, like me, would rather cause yourself bodily harm than admit you’re wrong, I’ve gone ahead and listed 5 stages in which to deal with your regret:

1. Shock/Denial

You know the moment it happens, usually around the time that Sasha is just finishing up the second coat of color and working on the top coat, and you’re just like fuuuuckkk. Suddenly the fun, chic color you were going to premier at your sister’s wedding to show her that you are 1000% okay with her getting married before you looks less fun and chic and more orange. Fuck.

2. Bartering/Anger

Once the shock has worn off you’ll do the logical thing and start making deals with the powers that be. Like, are you there god? It’s me, Margaret and could you cut me some fucking slack please? It’s one thing to send me on a Tinder date with someone who lied about their height in their bio but leave my mani out of this, thanks.

Then comes the rage blackouts anger. Tbh I can’t be held accountable for what I do when my nails look like shit. My first instinct when I’m feeling insecure is to ruin lives (or so my therapist says) and if the FIRE in the RBF I’m sending to Sasha isn’t enough of a warning not to test me rn then she cannot be helped. Just wait until you read my Yelp review, bitch. 

3. Guilt

Here is where you start saying crazy shit like, maybe you shouldn’t have made a scene with Sasha back there about how she sabotaged you with a fugly nail color. Also, maybe you shouldn’t have actually slept with the hobbit from that Tinder date. Wait, holy shit is this why you can’t have nice things?!

4. Depression

We all handle this stage differently. Some people would make a mental note of their mistake and work to correct it in the future. I am not friends with those people. I’d say the below image is a good representation of how I handle all my problems ranging from “my ex-boyfriend just sent me a ‘U up?’ text” to, say, trying out the color orange for the first time as a gel manicure:


^^ Actual footage of me handling my problems.

5. Acceptance

It can be hard to admit you’re wrong so I’d recommend that you don’t. Instead spend the next two weeks internally screaming at yourself until eventually the nail polish starts to chip your anger starts to fade. Healthy, right?

So there you have it. Do these stages resemble the 5 stages of grief as determined by the Kübler-Ross model? Yes. But does regretting your nail color slightly resemble the loss of a family member close friend girl you met in line for the bathroom? It’s really a close call.

Nail Contouring Is The Latest Nail Trend, But Can We Not?

My nail lady and I are practically besties, usually only communicating in a series of soft smiles, appropriate chuckles here and there, and nods for yes or no. But as of late, she’s really overstepping her boundaries and telling me I need to “contour my nails.” Please. Please, God. Tell me you’re joking.

NOPE. This is not satire and I did not make this up. People are literally contouring their nails to make them look longer. Because actually like, letting your nails grow out is too practical a solution? Look, I don’t care if your nail beds suck, stop trying to make nail contouring happen. First there was face contouring, then more specifically nose contouring, then butt contouring—when does it end? All I’m asking for is ONE part of my body that I don’t have to contour. Is that so much to ask??

While we used to be proponents of nail art, this shit has really gone off the rails within the past year. We started with the deeply sus phase of gluing actual fur on your nails. You know, just in case people weren’t clear on how many cats you owned/how much time you spend listening to Taylor Swift. Now your bearded lady fingers can tell everyone what’s good. 

@ay0brandiiii RT @BeauTuts: these furry nails are cute

— PRSZN (@Prizzle_) March 1, 2017

And then there was the whole succulent nails trend. Too many green thumb puns to make, not enough time. I thought I saw enough cacti at Coachella, but learned the hard way nothing and no one can fight a hipster’s allegiance to their Insta likes—no matter how many plants they kill to glue onto their nails, no matter how many succulents they leave dead and bloody along the way, just as long as they can make a name for themselves as an Instagram beauty model.

I thought a lot of things were gonna happen in 2016 that didn’t. For example succulent nails never quite took off

— Jen O. (@Jenodd) December 30, 2016

Just when we thought it couldn’t get any worse, here we are (honestly, that’s a metaphor for 2017). The nail contour. So people literally paint their nails with a clear/light coat, and then do a thin strip of a darker, brighter color down the middle to make their nails look longer.

Nail Contouring Is The New Beauty Trend You’ll Actually Want To Try:

— Girlfriend (@GirlfriendMAG) January 24, 2017

Don’t get me wrong, I’m eternally grateful for the Kardashian wisdom that so blessed me with the benefits of contouring. 15 minutes and 5 steps later, I watched myself go from a 6 to an 8 right in front of my very bathroom mirror. But nails??? At least let’s pick a part of the body that needs to shed a few. 
Said benefits of the “nail contour” from manicurists—manicurists I would never let within 15 miles of my hands—are:

1.  It’s “cool”. Guess we’re gonna have to disagree here, nail experts. If you have a cosmetology license, that shit should be revoked.

2.  It creates the illusion of longer nails. But who asked for this illusion?? And why can’t they just pay $40 for acrylics every month like the rest of us???

3. Easy execution. Well, I would hope the execution would be easy considering you’re LITERALLY SKIPPING HALF THE MANICURE. I wish life worked like this. Like, whenever I was in the mood for something easy, I could just skip half the work and just claim it’s the new trend. As I wonder why I’m still single and unemployed.

Overall, -2/10 do not recommend. America, let’s stop being so goddamn lazy and finish painting our whole nails. This is coming from the girl who just microwaved my food for 1:11 because I was too lazy to move my thumb to the 0 button. DO BETTER.