13 Expert-Approved Winter Nail Colors to Try Now

by Nikki Brown
Nov 17, 2017 at 9:00 a.m. ET

Gloves may shield your nails this winter, but that doesn’t mean they don’t deserve the spotlight. As with every season, there’s a new clan of colors that’ll make for fierce mani-'grams against the snow. There's one of two ways to go about choosing one.

Spend a ridiculous number of hours scouring the web for that one “perfect” hue or make life easier by browsing a set of carefully curated, expert-approved favorites. We consulted with some of today’s most talented nail stylists, and their picks include vampy blues, bright pinks and everything in between. Get a closer view of the best winter nail colors ahead.


Originally posted on StyleCaster

1 /13: Firetruck reds

1/13 :Firetruck reds

Tom Bachik, OPI global brand ambassador and celebrity manicurist, recommends heating up your nails as temperatures start to cool down.

"I’m getting so many requests for red right now. My fave shade... has to be OPI Nail Lacquer in Big Apple Red.  It’s a deep, rich, true red that’s sexy, elegant and cool. My clients, like Selena Gomez and Jennifer Lopez, are loving it.”

OPI Nail Lacquer in Big Apple Red, $8.79 at Target

2 /13: Pale neutrals

2/13 :Pale neutrals

Jackie Saulsbery, who has worked with Queen Latifah, Jennifer Hudson and Adele, recommends a lighter matte coat.

"Essie has a color in its Cashmere collection called Wrap Me Up. This is really fun and its pigments are pearl and dry matte!  You always win with the matte look on a snowy winter day."

Essie Cashmere collection polish in Wrap Me Up, $9 at Dermstore


3 /13: Deep wines

3/13 :Deep wines

Alternatively, Saulsbery also enjoys going to the other end of the color spectrum.

"Lauren B. has a color called Espresso on 3rd. On winter days, it looks amazing on your hands with its deep, dark wine look; guaranteed to make you smile!"

Lauren B. polish in Espresso on 3rd, $18 at Lauren B. Beauty

4 /13: Ruby reds

4/13 :Ruby reds

And if you're partial to classic hues, Saulsbery says you can never go wrong with a red like Pear Nova's Berry Jane.

"Reds are always great for winter wear; it gives the hands a warm look."

Pear Nova Nail Lacquer in Berry Jane, $11.50 at Pear Nova

5 /13: Burnt oranges

5/13 :Burnt oranges

Smith & Cult beauty ambassador Sarah Bland is all about colors that complement every and any skin tone, including Tang Bang, which she calls the perfect alternative to a classic red.

"All of my clients are obsessed with it. It goes with every fall outfit and is complementary on every skin tone. I recently wore it to a wedding and everyone asked for one."

Smith & Cult polish in Tang Bang, $18 at Smith & Cult

6 /13: Beautiful bordeauxs

6/13 :Beautiful bordeauxs

Jessica Tong, another Smith & Cult beauty ambassador, doesn't steer far from two of her wintry favorites from the polish brand.

“I alternate between Lovers Creep and Tenderoni all winter... make that all year!”

Smith & Cult polish in Lovers Creep (pictured), $18 at Smith & Cult

7 /13: The perfect nude

7/13 :The perfect nude

Naomi Yasuda, nail artist for Streeters, says never to underestimate the power of a traditional neutral when temperatures drop.

"One of the key ingredients of [Nails Inc. Montpelier Walk] polish is kale! It helps nails' growth and strength. I love the color as well. It goes well with any skin tone."

Nails Inc. polish in Montpelier Walk, $15 at Nails Inc.

8 /13: Glam glitters

8/13 :Glam glitters

To the contrary, a little sparkle never hurts either, especially around the holidays.

Yasuda calls Gucci's Iconic Gold "super-rich and pigmented gold! I love having sparkle on the nails in wintertime."

Gucci polish in Iconic Gold, $29 at Gucci

9 /13: Peek-a-boo blues

9/13 :Peek-a-boo blues

Celebrity and runway manicurist Arlene Hinckson is a fan of dark and sultry shades that'll evoke the mood of wintry nights.

"I am in love, love, love with House of Blues by Lauren B. It is the best almost-black-but-peek-a-boo blue on the market. The quality of the product is obvious by the way it lays smoothly on the nail plate. The brush helps with that too. My favorite thing is that you can really only use one coat."

Lauren B. polish in House of Blues, $18 at Lauren B. Beauty

10 /13: Punchy pinks

10/13 :Punchy pinks

Another favorite of Hinckson is Lauren B.'s Polo Lounge Punch, a light burgundy shade that'll cure your winter blues.

"It's bright enough to lift your spirit, but not so bright that it will make a girl feel ill-styled. Great for warmer and medium skin tones."

Lauren B. polish in Polo Lounge Punch, $18 at Lauren B. Beauty

11 /13: Blush pinks

11/13 :Blush pinks

Maya McCreary, Color Camp’s lead nail artist, loves the sophistication of a lighter hue like Capri Sunset by NCLA.

"Blush pink is always fashionable. It's soft, feminine, elegant and fun without looking too young."

NCLA polish in Capri Sunset, $16 at NCLA

12 /13: No-nonsense navy blues

12/13 :No-nonsense navy blues

On the other hand, a deeper shade, such as Forgot My Gym Uniform by NCLA, is just as pretty but with a funky touch.

"For something a little edgier but still sophisticated, navy is a great choice," she says.

NCLA polish in Forgot My Gym Uniform, $16 at NCLA

13 /13: Forest greens

13/13 :Forest greens

If you're a sucker for gel manis, then Sheila Rushka, Adam Broderick Salon & Spa nail bar manager, recommends dark neutrals like the CND Shellac Asphalt shade.

"Keep a rich lip balm in a tube exclusively for your cuticles," she says. "Dry cuticles respond fast, and the emollient stays where you put it! No sticky fingers to mess up your smartphone or iPad screen."

CND Shellac Power Polish in Asphalt, $13.94 at Walmart