Nail technicians now have star status because of Hollywood stars’ obsession with nail extensions, which they often document on their social media handles.
Be it Kylie Jenner’s 3D water droplet nails, or Hailey Bieber’s glazed doughnut mani, summer nails have long been a trending hashtag on social media, with a little something for everyone.
While extremely long blunt square nails are popular outside of India, nail technicians share that the almond shape (slightly pointier at the tips than an oval shape) is the most sought-after shape here because it is comfortable to work with and they look elegant. Press-ons and nail art stickers, too, are finding more fans in the country. “Short squares, medium oval and long almond shapes sell the most. In styles, French nails, glitters, ombre colours and neon swirls do best for us,” says press-on nail brand Srishti Raai, co-founder of SOEZI (actor Sonakshi Sinha is the other founder). All kinds of French tips and swirls are big trends right now, agrees Toshima Mirekar, technical educator (nails), Enrich Beauty.
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“Ideally, French tips are a classic pattern, but what people want now are colourful chromatic French manicures. You could either club many shades or go for a single colour for a contrasting tip rather than the white strip which gives a natural look. Most people are choosing neon tips on a nude or a pink neutral base,” says Mirekar.
If you are in mood to experiment, go for longer square nails or try a tie-dye pattern or freehand swirls just on the tips.
"Swirls are everywhere," says Mirekar about the nail art style, which involves drawing one or a few curved lines, almost psychedelic finish. “Swirls are all about experimenting; it is a flowing form of art that's elegant. You could choose a bright or a subtle shade. The freedom to go freehand makes swirls popular,” adds Mirekar about the iconic print style from the 1960s.
The popular motif in accessories, the cutesy blue evil eye, is a favourite DIY manicure as well. Mirekar suggests you could go blue on all nails, with one white or nude finger having the evil eye painted on top of one nail.
“Call them 3D or 5D (as you can even touch and feel them) art, it’s very innovative. Water droplets on nude or colourful nails is one of the most popular 3D nail art trend at the moment,” says Mirekar.
Just like Valentino’s couture week show that had beautiful solid pops of colour on the ramp, Mirekar says bright solid colour mattes are very much in demand. This is more of an international trend that has come to India. You can choose neons, pinks or even a bright yellow in matte. Just remember to make it pop.
Mismatched graphic nails are an Insta-favourite and they work on short nails too. Fans of K-pop band BTS are often seen on social media flaunting nails with fan art. You can get a range of these stickers online, with choices from Spongebob to Mickey Mouse, even Taylor Swift.
Japanese-style nude nails
“In Japan, the trick they use is to pick a shade lighter or darker than your skin colour for just a touch of contrast, which makes nails pop yet look subtle. It’s natural and goes well for the whole nude-lips-and-nails trend,” says Mirekar.
The glazed doughnut
Trust the internet to make a done-to-death nail art style go viral under a different name. Hailey Bieber’s “glazed doughnut nails” became a topic of discussion recently. “It’s so easy. Pick a lighter tone or a plain white shade. Top it with colour-changing unicorn chrome so that when you twist your finger from left to right, it catches the light and changes colour. Finish with a top coat,” says Mirekar. The only issue with this colour or other nude shades is that they stain easily with turmeric-filled food. So, be careful.