Nail Polish: 10 Tips For Finding Your Perfect Nude

Nail Polish: 10 Tips For Finding Your Perfect Nude
Rex features

Loving the new neutral mani? Here are the expert tricks you need to know to nail the right shade for your skintone...

The sun is shining, it’s above 15 degrees and you’re baring all in spring’s requisite crop top. Want the perfect nail shade to match? Forget bright coral and pink. This season is all about the nude nail polish, and yes, even for toes. 

“Nude nails will always be on trend, especially for summer,” says nail pro Anatole Rainey. “It’s the season where there are so many colours to wear so it’s better to stick with a nude nail to match – it simply goes with everything.” Besides, it’s the most low-maintenance colour. “Chips are much less evident with a neutral shade than any other hue.” We’re sold! But how do you find the most flattering nude for your skintone? Here, Rainey tells us how…

If you’re fair “Choose a pinky nude,” advises Rainey. “And stay away from yellow-based shades.”

If you’ve got a medium or olive complexion “You’ll suit a yellow, beige-y shade. But stay away from grey-tinted neutrals – they’ll make your skin look ashy.”

If you have a dark skintone “You’re one of the lucky ones! Dark skin suits any shade of nude.”

One is the magic number... If in doubt use Rainey’s failsafe trick: “Choose a lacquer that’s one shade lighter than your skin and apply only one coat of polish for an instantly elegant, polished effect.”

Sheer vs opaque “Opaque nudes can highlight the redness of hands and cuticles especially if you’re very pale,” says Rainey. “Opt for sheer nudes instead.”

Think trial and error – it works! “It’s impossible to tell what shade a polish will be once it’s on your nails by simply seeing it in the bottle. The only way you’ll really know is to try it out and see if you feel happy in it.”

Look to the light The number one 'don't' when it comes to nude nails? “Choosing a shade that’s too dark,” warns Rainey. “Anything too grey or yellow can be very unflattering, making nails look nicotine-stained and your skin a bit lifeless.”

Stick with it Having a bad nail day? “Once you’ve found your most flattering nude shade you can use it to disguise rough and ragged nails. A neutral hue helps to detract attention from your hands as opposed to a bright colour, which instantly draws attention to your fingers.”

Go long Pair your nude nails with a lot of length. “Pointy nails are the shape of the season,” says Rainey. “Try an oval rather than a pointed tip for a more wearable and sophisticated take on the trend.”

Nudes aren’t just for fingers For a fresh spin on spring’s nude nails wear the hue on your toes instead, suggests Rainey. “For a pop of colour you can pair a neutral pedi with a metallic mani as seen at Elie Saab.”  

Fancy trying the trend?
InStyle’s beauty team share their favourite nude nail polishes...

Dior Vernis in Tra-La-La, £19, Debenhams
“One coat of this sheer pink polish makes my nails look instantly longer,” Cassie Steer, beauty director

Deborah Lippmann nail polish in Fashion, £16, Beauty Expert
“The perfect shade of taupe to offset my reddish-tinged fingers,” Malena Harbers, beauty editor

Nails Inc The Perfect Nude nail varnish in Montpelier Walk, £14, Nails Inc
“This toffee-coloured nude suits my olive complexion perfectly,” Jess Tibbits, beauty writer

Back to Top