While manicure fads come and go from season to season, there are some timeless nail trends that always endure and we've rounded up 32 such designs that will never tire.
When it comes to selecting your next nail look, there are a lot of things to consider - from your nail shape to your style, in general - especially when whatever shade or pattern you choose will be on your person from then on out, every moment of every day until you opt for a change. Thus, selecting a classic, tried and true manicure is always a good way to go.
In the same way a capsule wardrobe revolves around trend-defying basics, there are some nail looks that simply never go out of style - no matter the season or year - from signature dark red nails to nude, expensive-looking nails. In fact, we've compiled 32 manis that are proven to stand the test of time, all of which are easy to recreate and universally flattering...
32 of the most timeless nail trends to wear
The beauty and fashion world moves pretty fast but there are some trends that really don't even warrant the term "trend" anymore, as they've been around for eons (okay, not that long - but it feels like it) and scarcely changed.
This is indeed the case for nail looks like the French-tip manicure and bright red nails, so if you're stuck for ideas on your next manicure but want to play it safe with a timeless and ever-stylish look, here are 32 looks to wear - no matter the season or occasion.
1. French tips
A French manicure is as timeless as it gets. You can wear this design in every colour variation but white will always be iconic. It's clean, subtle and perfect for anyone looking to compliment their minimalistic capsule wardrobe. If you're planning to recreate this look, be sure to use one of the best nail strengtheners.
2. Milky nude nails
For another subtle and muted look, a milky white polish never goes out of style. It will perfectly elevate any outfit and is easy to recreate at home. A block shade like this one is also ideal if you're a fan of BIAB nails.
3. Signature red nails
If you're looking for a truly chic nail look, you can't go wrong with a signature red. This bold, crimson shade adds a pop of colour to your look and while it is definitely a statement, it's effortless and sophisticated - hence why it's such a timeless trend. A primary red also suits every nail shade, especially the trendy "squoval".
4. Dark blue nails
A dark blue shade is another classic, it's the perfect winter nail colour but this hue will also lend itself to a chic look all year round. It's dark but simple and ideal for the minimalistic lovers among us.
5. Burgundy nails
There's just something about dark red nails that never gets old - especially when autumn rolls around. This rich, wine-like shade is so chic and really compliments shorter nail lengths, as well as longer, almond nails. If you're planning to recreate this particular burgundy moment, be sure to invest in a high-quality, glossy top coat, like OPI's Nature Strong polish (available at Amazon).
6. Warm brown nails
Brown nails are another popular staple, especially in the autumn/winter months. Being a neutral shade, it remains subtle, though if you're looking to make more of a statement, opt for a dark brown.
7. Pink-nude nails
A pink nude is the perfect choice for those who prefer to steer clear of loud, statement hues and instead want something for everyday. A simple light pink or nude never fails to look neat and expensive and suits every nail shape and length.
8. Coral nails
If you're looking for a slightly subtler option to red, a bright coral is the way to go. This sunny shade is perfect for the warmer months and evoke thoughts of the beach and ice cream - well, to us anyway.
9. Lilac nails
Lilac is another pastel you can add to your capsule nail collection. This pretty cool-toned shade always manages to creep back into the spring nail trends and it's not hard to see why. It's delicate but still adds a little pop of colour to your everyday attire.
10. Grey nails
For a more mature look, a dark or blue-toned grey is a sophisticated option. We'd recommend pairing this muted shade with short and squared nails.
11. White nails
White is another timeless colour that always finds a way back into the beauty zeitgeist. It's fresh and easy to pull off, especially if you're looking to recreate it at home.
12. Pink nails
Pink in every iteration is always a safe bet when selecting a stylish manicure. You can go pastel or opt for a vibrant fuchsia, either way you've got yourself a chic look.
13. Micro French tips
For a more minimal take on the French manicure, opt for a micro mani. It features the same elements; a pink/nude base and a thin white tip, the only difference is the tip's width. A micro French manicure boasts just a slight white tip - applied typically to shorter, squared nails - as opposed to the classic, almond shape.
14. Barely-there Glossy nails
A barely-there, glossy manicure offers a very natural but clean look. It's easy to maintain and complements every length and shape. It works for every season and is also a great option if you're taking a break from nail treatments, as you can achieve this look with a nail strengthener or glossy builder.
15. Beige nails
Neutrals like this creamy beige shade will never go out of style. It's soft and subtle and ideal for a chic, everyday look.
16. Glitter nails
Nothing puts a spring in your step quite like a glittery nail polish, especially if you're looking for a festive look come December. There's a reason why a sparkly mani is often attributed to Christmastime but it can also be incorporated into your everyday look, easily. For a very wearable look, opt for a cream or milky white base coat with a silver or gold glittery top coat applied overtop.
17. Minimalistic feature nails
Feature nails are a very versatile option as they can be incorporated into any of the above manicures and add a little bit of interest to your chosen look. A feature nail can be anything from a different colour or finish to the rest of your fingertips or a pattern. You can also opt for multiple feature nails, like the picture above.
18. Red glitter nails
A sparkly red polish is very synonymous with the festive period and for good reason. It's statement but you can opt for less or more sparkly, depending on your preference.
19. Pearl nails
If you love a natural nail moment but are looking for something with a bit more oomph, a classic pearly manicure is perfect. It's elegant and chic and will easily elevate your everyday look. We'd recommend this opalescent polish for an event or occasion.
20. Almond nails
If you're wondering about timeless nail shapes, almond is one of the most popular and complements every shade and design.
21. Orange nails
Orange is always a timeless autumn nail shade, but it's also perfect for summer. Whether you opt for a tangerine hue or a more muted, burnt orange, you can't go wrong.
22. Cobalt nails
Blue is another colour that always makes its way back into the seasonal nail trends time and time again. Cobalt blue is a classic, statement shade that adds a vibrant pop to your attire while still remaining chic and classic.
23. Dusky pink nails
A dusky or sheer pink is also a foolproof option, especially if you already love neutral shades but are perhaps looking for a change - but nothing too drastic. A soft, pastel pink complements all nail shapes and lengths easily and also makes a great base for a French manicure.
24. Light blue nails
A pastel blue is another colour often attributed to spring and summer but it's also perfect for winter too - especially if you add a glittery or pearly top coat. It's soft and not too daring, making it an elegant manicure shade for whatever season or occasion.
25. Green nails
Green, especially a cool sage shade is one colour we return to often because not only is it cute but it's also not too out there. Like with light blues and lilac, a stylish green never goes out of style and depending on your chosen shade, can be worn throughout the year. When applying a pastel shade at home, be sure to use two to three coats, to ensure you have an even, streak-free finish!
26. Mauve nails
A mauve - much like with burgundy - is just one of those signature shades that never fails to impress. Having this colour at your fingertips will leave you looking (and feeling) chic and put together and is sure to bring a few compliments your way.
27. Burnt orange anils
A burnt orange shade is another classic. It's the epitome of a timeless nail look because every year, when the leaves start changing colour, you can spy this particular colour cropping up more and more. That being said though, this shade isn't only applicable for the autumn months, you can wear it all year round, thanks to its more muted look - as opposed to a vibrant orange.
28. Dark red nails
Like with a crimson shade, a dark merlot-like red always looks effortless. It's mature and sophisticated and the perfect failsafe if you're unsure of what manicure to go for, or are looking to change things up.
29. Black nails
While a black nail polish might be too bold for some, it is definitely a timeless look. It's trendy, especially when applied to shorter nails and can often be spotted on the red carpet. Like with burgundy and navy shades, we often seen black manicures made a comeback in the autumn and winter.
30. Half moon nails
If you're looking a subtle design like that of the French manicure, a halfmoon nail look is a good option. As the name suggests, it features a crescent shape at your cuticle that can either be a different colour from the rest of your nail, or allow your natural nail to show through, creating a contrast.
31. Short squared nails
Much like how almond-shaped nails are a classic style, short and squared nails are also a staple look, as opposed to more angular and statement stiletto or coffin nails. Any of the manicures in the roundup would perfectly suit this length and shape.
32. Dark brown nails
Like burgundy, dark brown is a classic shade when it comes to autumn/winter but really you can wear this colour all year-round and look effortlessly chic as you do so.