Here are 21 fresh ideas to try.
If you’ve ever been intimidated by the nail polish wall at your local salon, you’re definitely not alone. However, we’ve got some great news: Rainbow nails are officially a thing, making your choice a whole lot easier.
Rainbow manicures have been popping up on Instagram over the last year or so—each with a cooler iteration than the last—but now that salons are open again, they're taking over as the manicure of the summer. Although the O.G. rainbow manicure is just a different color on each nail, it’s since evolved and can take the form of a rainbow French manicure or rainbow nail art (think a different-color flower on each finger).
Although the trend is playful, it’s also caught the attention of high fashion and has been spotted at the United Colors of Benetton show during London Fashion Week and on models like Gigi Hadid.
The appeal is obvious. Beyond being able to wear all your favorite summer shades at once, it fits perfectly with the many other trends everyone is obsessed with right now: hair accessories, prairie dresses, tiny bags. All a little kitschy, all a lot of fun. Plus, it's so easy to do at home if you're not quite ready to head to the salon. Either way, we rounded up the best rainbow nail designs to try this summer, below.
All products featured on Glamour are independently selected by our editors. However, when you buy something through our retail links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
1. Classic Rainbow Nails
For the most classic (and easiest) take on rainbow nails, simply paint each nail a different shade. We particularly like this version, since the pastel shades and matte finish give this mani a candy-coated feel.
2. Mixed French
For Gigi Hadid's 26th-birthday celebration, the model rocked a rainbow mani by nail artist Mei Kawajiri. What makes this mani so cool is that not only is each tip a different shade; every single finger is different. It's perfect for even the most indecisive among us.
3. Rainbow Flowers
It doesn't get much cuter than a rainbow of floral tips. Because of the flowers' larger size, this one would be pretty easy to DIY as well.
4. Stacked French
Get the most out of your mani by not only alternating colors on each finger, but stacking different shades. If you don't have a lighter version of each color at home, just mix a little white polish with your base shade for the same effect.
5. Tie-Dye Tips
Another fun way to wear the rainbow nails trend is by doing a different color on each hand. These ombré tips feel so summery and cool.
6. Sweet Florals
Adding dimensional flowers is an easy way to take a classic rainbow mani to the next level. Bonus points if they are also rainbow.
7. Muted Rainbow Nails
If an array of brights feels too, well, bright, stick to earthy muted tones like mustard and sage green. Essie makes some of our favorites, including Precious Car-Go! and Don't Hate, Curate.
8. Rainbow Ombré Nails
Or keep things neutral with a rainbow of pinks and nudes.
9. Sticker Book Nails
Brush up on your nail art skills by painting a different design on each finger. Unified tips pulls the whole thing together.
10. Rainbow French Manicure
The French manicure isn't going anywhere. Make it feel a little more summer-ready by making each tip a different color.
11. ’80s Nails
A smattering of fun patterns and neon tips is an easy shortcut to total ’80s vibes. Try Olive & June’s new summer collection for all the brights you could want in one place.
12. Pastel Stripes
Sometimes two colors are just as impactful as a whole rainbow, especially when paired with this cool negative-space stripe situation.
13. Rainbow Tips
Take the rainbow theme even further by painting actual rainbows on your nails. So cute.
14. Pressed Flowers
For a cottagecore take on the trend, apply a different color dried pressed flower to each nail.
15. Vivid Prints
For nails that scream summer, mix cartoon rainbows, smiley faces, and more glittery styles.
16. Pastel Rainbow Nails
A mix of pastel nails—try Sally Hansen in Pinky Promise, Sheer Happiness, and Orchid-ing Aside—is a soft take on the trend.
17. Sleepover Nails
A playful assortment of nail stickers is like a blast from the past. Deck your nails in whatever decals you have on hand, or go for these custom press-ons by Color Camp.
18. Negative-Space Rainbow Nails
Alternating colors and negative-space stripes makes for a more minimal take on the trend.
20. Woodland Rainbow Nails
Even if you're not an animal person, there's no denying how cute this mani is. Take a cue from nail blogger Melanie and use a different sticker and color tip on each nail.
21. Cool Rainbow Nails
Bright greens and off-beat yellows are the coolest shades for summer, so why not combine them with rainbow nails for a slam-dunk mani?
Bella Cacciatore is the beauty writer at Glamour. Follow her on Instagram @bellacacciatore_.
This story originally appeared on: Glamour - Author:Bella Cacciatore