In the era of Instagram announcement posts, with ring finger hand on full display, it’s natural to start planning a nail strategy for when your partner pops the big question. Engagement nails tend to be on the minimalist side – think French manicures or neutral shades – says celebrity manicurist Tom Bachik whose clientele includes Jennifer Lopez and Selena Gomez. If you want more pop, consider metallic accents, which won’t take too much attention away from the ring.
That being said, “non-traditional” nail looks have been gaining popularity lately. Nail artist Brittney Boyce counts Olivia Rodrigo, Megan Fox, and Kim Kardashian as regular clients, and she reports seeing more experimentation with colour and design. The best engagement nail, she says, is the one you love. “[It] all just comes down to personal style,” she says.
So whether you’ve already found your forever person or are still using those crystals to attract him, her or them into your life, it’s never too early to start brainstorming. Below are 15 engagement nail ideas to consider now.
When it comes to engagement manicures, neutral shades are foolproof – they match everything. This creamy tan acrylic will make any engagement ring stand out. But as with any mani, good grooming is essential. Bachik recommends something like his Tom Bachik Travel Nail Care Set by Tweezerman, to give your nails and cuticles some TLC.
If you’re seeking a subtle design to elevate a bare base, opt for a classic French mani. Bachik painted thick white lines along the tips of Nicola Peltz Beckham’s long square nails for a dynamic look.
We’re all about metallic sheens, especially bronze. Choose this if you’re looking to put a unique spin on a basic bare or brown nail shade.
Looking for some colour? Vibrant and alluring, Bachik’s cherry-red nail look on Michelle Williams makes for the ideal engagement mani.
Another subtle way to dress up any mani is with tiny nail art details, as seen here on J Lo. We love Bachik’s addition of a small silver curve hugging the bottom of the French tip.
More Jennifer Lopez inspo. This rich chocolate brown with grey undertones not only makes for a great neutral nail, but it also provides the perfect contrast to coloured engagement rings. Her green diamond just pops.
It may seem too on-the-nose to have white engagement nails, but there’s no arguing that white nails make your engagement ring shine a tiny bit more. Bachik likes to go for creamy white shades that add depth, like Essie’s Marshmallow.
For just a hint of chrome, dress your French mani with textured silver tips. As a base, Boyce likes to use a milky neutral over something opaque and recommends something like the Aprés Nail’s Color Extend Gel Bottle in Carla.
For something more unexpected and trendy, mix white and black streaks for a bolder engagement nail. Set these designs against a bare nail to ground the look.
Ethereal and romantic, milk bath nails evoke inviting calm and a sense of wanderlust (and they’re super pretty). Blake Lively wears a creamy milk bath base with delicately placed floral decals that accentuate her ring.
This Tiffany blue is a rich turquoise with a glossy sheen that will take your IG engagement photo to the next level.
Bare it all
In true “quiet luxury” fashion, Sofia Richie Granger wore her natural short nails with her engagement ring. If you want to keep it bare but still polished, swipe on a clear coat like the OPI Brilliant High-Shine Top Coat, or the Dior Nail Glow Polish that gives you a hint of pink.
Once upon a time, the black mani was reserved for Halloween and/or angsty teens. No longer: black nails are a modern classic, and one of the chicest options for an engagement nail look. Just take a cue from Kourtney Kardashian. Dark, edgy, yet still very much romantic – we’re here for it.
If you’re still looking to get that glazed doughnut-inspired look, add some iridescent shine. Serena Williams goes for sparkly light pink nails that shine bright like her engagement ring.
Ciara proves that mauve makes for a great go-to nail colour. The mix of purple and pink with cool undertones works for every skin tone.
We love this warm gold-orange shade Beyoncé sports. It’s got a sheer coverage and a light metallic sheen that doesn’t overpower the stunning ring on her finger.
This article was originally published on British Vogue.
- Bare nails
- Basic neutral nails
- Blake Lively
- Bridal white nails
- Bronze nails
- Celebrity-inspired engagement nails
- Chrome tip nails
- Classic red nails
- Deep mocha nails
- French tips
- Glossy neon nails
- Golden nails
- Gothic chic nails
- Graphic design nails
- Jenifer Lopez
- Kourtney Kardashian
- Metallic detail nails
- Michelle Williams
- Milk bath nails
- Muted mauve nails
- Serena Williams
- Sofia Richie Granger
- Tiffany Blue nails