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Biggest Nail Trends Of 2021

Updated: Apr 28, 2021

The last year with it’s trials and tribulations had a huge impact on everyday life and businesses. Nail salons all over the world were impacted in view of social distancing and were shut down for the better part of 2020. A new year has commenced and life is slowly and gradually inching towards a new normal. While nail salons might still not be functional at full capacity, or you may not have any place to go yet, we can still hope for a normal future and gauge what the future of nail art looks like this year. There will always be your staple of glitter or red nails, or the ever omnipresent French Manicure, there are styles that are seasonal and fleeting. So scouring the internet for trend alerts and what the future of fashion holds in general, here are my predictions about what the biggest nail trends of 2021 will be.

One Line Face Art

This particular form of minimal art has recently seen a surge in everything, from decor to jewellery to nail art. This simple and minimalistic, yet evocative one line face art is a bold statement within a single black line. Pair the black line with a subtle contrasting base of nudes and whites, or vice versa. You can do these freehand, but the easier route would be to get water decals, which will look much cleaner and sharper.

Iridescent Nails

A predecessor to the viral chrome nails, iridescent nails are taking over the nail art scene. Commonly seen in Japanese and Asian markets, these cellophane like nails are a treat to look at under shifting lights. There isn't truly an iridescent nail polish or iridescent chrome powder that can give you this effect. Your best bet is using iridescent films and stickers or press on nails. Use lighter shades as the base to keep that translucent quality of the iridescent film.

Indie Nails

A style of design that has been around in one form or another, but is finally gaining traction is the 'Indie' nail design. In this nail art style, each fingernail has a unique design or colour and no two fingers are alike; but it is all tied together with a colour theme or pattern/ theme. The ombre trend from light to dark nails where each nail is a different colour, primary colours on individual nails, rainbows, etc. all fall under this category. You can even have a particular print in 10 different colours for this nail art. Quirky and fun, there is a nail art for everyone in this style.

Pantone Colour Of The Year

Love it or hate it, the Pantone Colour of The Year does end up making a statement and slowly and eventually trickles down into the fashion and beauty industry. This year's colours, 'Ultimate Gray' & 'Illuminating' are gorgeous colours on their own, but also pair together beautifully. Pair yellows and grays with neutral accents and designs. Looks great on all skin tones and nail lengths.

Retro Is In

Nostalgia has been a big selling factor these past couple of years, with retro themed shows and styles being back in trend. The trend has also seeped into the nailart community with retro designs making a statement. Utilize colour palettes and geometric patterns specific to past eras to make an interesting nail art. The art pop deco, the groovy 80s patterns, they all are a good choice for this nail art. Pick an era and pattern of choice, and voila, you have retro nails to rock.

Gold Minimalism

Gold is evergreen and omnipresent and so is minimalism. This design merges the two to make something magical yet elegant and classy. With negative space or nude bases, use gold accessories and accents to accentuate a design. Don't go ham with the gold, be sure to leave some of the base uncovered so that the design is legible and shines against the bare background. Perfect for everyday and special occasions.

Tortoise Shell Nails

Slow and steady wins the race! The tortoise shell design came out last year in 2020, but was overshadowed by the 'Cow Print' trend and didn't get it's moment to shine. Now that the cow print has died down, it's time for the humble tortoise! A neutral aesthetics dream, these brown blotches form the perfect print to pair with any colour and outfit. Pair with nudes and golds for the classiest prints this season.

Bedazzling Is Back!

Remember the 90s bedazzling phase where everything from your head to your toes was bedazzled! There was a surge in DIY bedazzling kits so you could have personalized embellished items. Well, the trend is back, but in a classier and elevated way. Pair golden charms or clear rhinestones (or swarovski crystals if you're feeling fancy) with neutral nude colours. Don't opt for colours to keep the look subtle and classy, yet sparkly.

Instant Press On Nails

This trend, isn't anything new or innovative, but was born out of necessity. Given the current scenario that the world is going through right now, many salons are either not operational, or people aren't comfortable going to public spaces. So what do you do if you want your nails done but can't get it done by someone else, fake nails to the rescue! Many nail artists are now providing 'Press-On' nail sets to their clients who are unable to visit them in person. Also, don't be wary of them, they've come leaps and bounds in terms of design and durability compared to their older counterparts. Nowadays, the fits are either so good or can be personalised, that they look like extensions and natural nails depending on the length and style. So pair any of the previous mentioned nail trends with press on nails, and voila, instant trendy nails at your fingertips, literally.

There you have it, my predictions for the 'Nail Trends of 2021'. Try them out and we'll find out how right I was, or just for fun. Check out the blog for more nail art inspiration and tips and hacks. Have fun trending & painting your nails!


P.S.- None of the images used are owned by us unless watermarked with @nails_by_sujata.

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