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Hot trends for summer nails

Elizabeth Mitchell is a freelance fashion and beauty writer living in Los Angeles. A graduate of New York University, she regularly contributes to The Fashion Spot, The Luxury Spot and authors the Star Style column for StyleBakery Teen. ...

Manicure madness

Ah... the warm weather has finally arrived, and there’s nothing like a smoking haute manicure to accompany your sizzling summer style.
Sizzling summer nails
Purple nail polish

To make sure your fingers are polished to perfection, peep these need-to-know trends for chic summer nails.

Pastel with a punch

According to celebrity manicurist Elle, who has painted the nails of everyone from Jennifer Lopez to Hilary Swank, this summer's nails are all about pastel with a punch. "People are switching it up this season, and it's less about matching everything in the same color and more about having fun," she says. "Color is accessible, and people want to play with it!" Right now, Elle is loving lilac nail colors paired with deep purple hues, as well as baby blues and grays.

Colorblocking fun

Certified nail technician and owner of Happy Feet Boutique Audrey Tarrant says one of the hottest nail trends of the season by far is colorblocking. "This fad recently appeared on fashion runways around the world and is now showing up on the hands and feet of women everywhere." Do it yourself in fun, eye-popping brights or punchy pastels for a striking summer look that's as playful as it is pretty.

Gel Nails

For long-lasting color that's all the rage this summer, try gel nails! Polish stays put for several weeks on end, allowing you to run, jump, swim or play without ever having to worry about your mani chipping away. Right now, we're particularly fond of OPI's new Gelcolor, which is available in an array of gorgeous shades for summer, everything from Pompeii Purple to Cajun Shrimp and Strawberry Margarita. What more could a girl ask for?

Looking for more ways to update your manicure? Check out these cool nail designs before heading to the salon.

Magnetic patterns

Magnetic patterns are a revolutionary way to do your nails, and for the first time, you can actually buy nail polish with reactive magnetic particles, says founder of Beauty Booked Hillary Hutcheson. "After applying, just take a magnet (this comes with the polish) and place it above your nail for 10 seconds. In an instant, cool patterns will magically appear on the nail!" For summer, Hillary suggests testing out designs like stripes, hearts or stars.

Beachy ombre

The ombre trend is still going strong, and this summer it's all about channeling the beach sunset look, with an orange hue slowly fading into pink, says Hillary. Sophisticated yet sexy, "it reminds me of a fruity cocktail and is so easy to achieve!" Want to DIY at home? Simply follow her step-by-step instructions:

  1. Start by grabbing two nail polish colors (orange and pink) and a makeup sponge.
  2. Cut the sponge to the size of your nail so it's easier to apply.
  3. Then paint the orange nail polish on the first half of the sponge and the pink nail polish on the second half of the sponge.
  4. Dab the sponge onto your nail.
  5. Repeat steps 2, 3 and 4 for each nail.
  6. Apply a clear top coat to your nails.
  7. Use a Q-tip and acetone to clean around your nails, and voila, you're all done!

More nail tips & trends

Pretty in pink: Achieving the perfect pink pedicure
Tips for long-lasting nail color

Nail art tutorial

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