nail trends 2020
Credit: Instagram/@harrietwestmoreland

Call it the COVID effect if you will, but we’ve never been more invested in our nails than we have been this year. Whether you spent your time in isolation picking off the remnants of your SNS or experimenting with at-home amateur nail art, the pandemic has done nothing to quell our appetite for manicured nails.

What has changed this year is the design offering. Many of us went bare during lockdown (voluntarily or not) and found a whole new appreciation for our natural nails. While some are forgoing manicures altogether, many are simply switching to more minimal designs on their natural nails. Technicians have responded in kind, showcasing a number of understated creations that have gone wild on Instagram.

So if you’re looking for some inspiration for your next appointment – whenever that may be – take a look through our edit of some of the chicest nail looks currently doing the rounds on social media.

Reverse French Manicure

The traditional French manicure is back, but why not try this modern twist? In this design, the white tips are applied close to the cuticle. A stylish, innovative approach to French tradition – Emily In Paris would approve.

Yellow Abstract Nails

Wear your art on your hands with optimistic yellow digits. Yellow is tipped by nail aficionados to be big in the coming seasons, but the abstract trend takes it one step further. Go for unique swirl shapes, or bring in a few more bold shades to amplify the look even more.

Velvet Nails

Is there anything more festive than a green velvet set? We think not. It might look a little high maintenance but it’s actually some clever gel work to create the velour illusion. Book in before the holiday season, we say!

Glitter Ribbon Nails

Turns out there is an elegant way to wear glitter – these sweet glitter ribbons, as created by nail legend Betina Goldstein. The pastel colours inject a bit of fun, while the light touch of glitter means the look will work with anything you wear after the party, too.

Negative Space Nails

No, the nail artist didn’t just stop partway through the design – negative space nail art is now trés chic, with a portion of the nail left almost naked. Best worn with a negative space eyeliner look.