If you are anything like me, you have four main nail styles. Black polish, red polish, nude, and beat to all hell. Previously neglected, nails are making a big comeback as accessories this season. But before slathering on the usual, allow me to offer some great nail polish alternatives as seen on the runways this fall. It’s all about new textures, new shapes, and subtlety.
Reverse French Manicure
A personal favorite, Reverse French is when a dark polish is used for the tips instead of the traditional white tipped French Manicure. It’s a small, easy way to add just a touch of sinister style to something normally seen as wholesome and girly. Favorite pairings include a nude nail with a deep red or black tip. It’s sexy and misleading, like fingertips dipped in blood or dirt under the nails. It is the perfect way to complete that Femme Fatale look.
Half Moon Manicure
Seen on runways and pinup models like Dita von Teese, the Half Moon Manicure takes the Reverse French one step further and brings the color all the way up to that little crescent of white found by your cuticles. Sometimes exaggerated by adding a light color to the “Half Moon”, this take is another tricky way of elongating nails and adding a little something to cause a double take from passersby as you sip your drink.
Matte polish is exactly what it sounds like, polish with a dull or flat finish. Think suede or velvet as opposed to vinyl or latex. It’s slowly becoming more and more popular with large brands like O.P.I. and Orly launching matte collections this season. I tried Orly in Matte Vinyl (a thick asphalt black) and my sister’s first comment? “You look like a dead person.” WIN! But seriously, this is definitely a great way to also play with textures; throw in a gloss at the tips, splatter it across the nails, or even do a matte/glossy stripe and it becomes a subtle little harbinger of edge.
Finally, I must make one recommendation as you venture off into the great wide world of nail care. To keep it classy, round out your nails to give what’s called an oval tip, it elongates your fingers and gives them a natural, sexy, sometimes even retro feel. You could file them to be pointier then usual as well but be prepared to puncture holes into everything you wear, like a miniature wolverine, only you can’t regenerate those vintage stockings.