If you haven’t yet seen the glass-nails trend claim a permanent spot on your TikTok For You Page or disrupt your Instagram feed, then you’re in for a surprise. Glass nails are trending again, and this time, there’s a good chance they’ll stick around for a while. Need proof? Take a look at the eye-catching manicures celebs have been rocking on the red carpets lately. While there may not be a major departure from the viral glazed donut nails that Hailey Bieber sported at the 2022 Met Gala (created by celebrity nail artist Zola Ganzorigt), glass nails are, in effect, their antithesis.
They’ve staked their claim as the minimalist approach of long, healthy, and gorgeous nails that relies on an imperfection-free appearance. I like to think of them as a fail-proof seal of approval from talented manicurists like Brittney Boyce, celebrity nail artist and founder of Nails of LA. Read on to learn what she has to say about the glass-nails trend and check out four of her manis. Then, shop 18 products to create them based on Boyce’s creations.
Everything to Know About Glass Nails
Boyce was beyond excited to share her take on glass nails. “I’m obsessed with the glass clear nail trend. This is something I’ve been doing for the last five years or so,” Boyce begins. “But it’s definitely a hard look to get down correctly.” A quick scroll through Boyce’s official Instagram account reveals a strong appreciation for the trend that can be traced back to early 2019. How’s that for dedication to an art form? Boyce, as a celebrity nail artist whose work often involves striking twists on trending nail designs, has approached the glass nail trend with a new energy and vision every time. Her secret weapon for creating the perfect glass-nail look? A gel builder to alter the length and overall appearance of natural nails so that they appear healthy, strong, and of course, glass-like.
Be forewarned: The process of creating glass nails may be more tricky than a 30-second clip on TikTok will have you believe. According to Boyce, glass nails can be difficult to achieve without the right tools (or an open mindset). “You want to make sure that you’re not getting bubbles during the application because that will show throw at the end,” says Boyce, describing the extent of the clear gel extension building process. “[Glass nails] are definitely more of an advanced type of nail because it’s really hard to hide perfections,” she continues. As difficult as they may be for a nail novice, committing to the style and finding a manicurist who can bring it to life makes this trend achievable. Be sure to screenshot this story for nail inspo before you head to the salon.
While it’s always fun to try new nail looks at home, glass nails largely depend on experience and skill to be captured. Because it’s so detailed, Boyce recommends going to a manicurist for glass nails rather than trying it on your own unless you’re confident in your abilities and okay with the possibility of very visible imperfections (after all, the trend is called glass nails). For those of you bold enough to try this without the aid of a manicurist, Boyce recommends Orly’s GelFX Builder in a Bottle in the shade Crystal Clear to build extensions for the natural nail. If home manicures are more your style and you would prefer to opt for non-gel polishes, here’s a list with 15 of my favorites that will give you a glass nail–inspired look.
Products to Re-Create the Look of Glass Nails