The Biggest And Boldest Nail Trends Of 2024, According To Experts

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Stars are poised to become one of the biggest trends in nail art designs. “I’ve been loving oversized stars lately and I have been seeing tons of manicures revolving around them all over instagram,” says nail artist Jess Brush aka @nail.betch on Instagram. “For a DIY version, I use a super thin striping brush which makes painting so much easier. But, you can also just go for a good quality nail sticker.”

“Peach Fuzz” was officially dubbed Pantone’s color of the year for 2024—so you can expect to see the color making its way into everything, including nail designs.

2024 will be the year of rich, dark brown shades that echo the color of coffee, according to Rachel Apfel Glass, founder of GLOSSLAB. “It’s the perfect shade to rock this winter and beyond and it’s neutral enough to match with any outfit,” she says.

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Cat eye and chrome finishes are already popular, and both create mesmerizing, dimensional manicures. In 2024, many people will opt to combine the two, applying a layer of the magnetic cat eye gel polish under a sheer chrome pigment, believes celebrity nail artist Julie Kandalec. “This really can only be done with gel, so be sure to ask your nail artist to first apply a neutral magnetic cat eye gel (silver is best), use the magnet to move the particles into the shape you want, and cure,” she says. “Then, between layers of non-wipe top coat, apply your sheer unicorn chrome pigment.”

2024 will bring an update to one of this year’s most popular colors, says Apfel Glass. “While muted greens were the trend for 2023, in 2024, we are going to see nail enthusiasts opting for something brighter and spunkier,” she says. “Greens look good on any nail shape and length as well.”

3D gel will continue its reign, particularly designs that feature a different color on each nail, says Kandalec. “I first saw this on my trip to Seoul in May, and it soon took hold here in the States,” she says. “I think it has longevity, at least through summer 2024 due to the cute, jelly-textures and whimsical details that are a nod to the 90s.” The trend requires sculpting gel, which comes in varieties that are clear, colored, or have metallic specs, she notes.

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At the opposite end of the spectrum, natural but manicured nails will be popular in 2024, believes Brush. “In my eyes, nothing can compare to the beauty of a clean, strong, natural nail,” she says. To DIY a natural nail that looks polished, Brush suggests applying cuticle oil daily, filing your nails weekly, and opting for a sheer nude or pink polish.

You’ll likely notice a trend in nail art where no two fingers look the same, predicts Brush. “Mix and match designs are becoming more and more popular, and I don’t think they’re going away any time soon,” she says. “They’re the ‘cool girl’ manicure in my opinion.” Whether your nail art of choice involves swirls, flowers, bows, butterflies, or another design element, you can opt for a mismatched look.

With red emerging as a major fashion trend over the last year—and as the viral “red nail theory” that suggests red nail polish can help you attract romance takes over TikTok—it’s safe to say that classic red nails will be making a huge comeback.

According to Apfel Glass, 2024 is specifically the year for bright, vibrant reds. While the color always makes a resurgence during the holidays, she expects bright red nail polish to be on everyone’s mood boards year-round.

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Expect to see nail colors that combine 2023’s Barbiecore trend and Pantone’s 2024 color of the year, peach fuzz. Hot pink and peach—and mismatched “skittle manicures” that combine the two—will trend in 2024, according to Brush. “The colors are classic yet fun, and I really feel like they look great on everybody,” she says.

Kandalec has noticed a trend of floating linear nail art, i.e., designs with bare/neutral colors and thin stripes. She created floating linear designs for Staud and Christian Cowan at New York Fashion Week this year.

“These looks can be very simple and only need one color to still make a big impact on the nail,” the nail artist says. To create thin lines, you use a size 20/0 brush from an art supply store, she says.

Lettermark

Renee Cherry

Freelance Writer

Renee Cherry is a New York-based writer and editor specializing in beauty, health, fitness, and nutrition. She earned a B.S. in journalism with a specialization in fashion in beauty communications from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. She completed internships at Cosmopolitan and Shape.com before taking a full time position at Shape as a digital writer/producer. Renee spent the next six years working at Shape.com, most recently as the brand’s associate editor, before transitioning to freelance work.

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