These Icy Blue Nail Designs Are The Subtle & Chic Way To Do Winter Manicures

Just a bit of frosting.

Sparkly blue swirl nails

It seems like the whole world is in its Blue Period. Few other colors — be they used in clothing, home decor, or beauty touches — manage to be so diverse in shade range and versatile in feeling. Blue can be earthy and neutral (faded denim blue), shocking and imaginative (electric blue), or calming and centering (pretty much every shade of blue), so it’s no wonder that blue nail polish colors and manicure designs have ruled the past several years. The best blue nail design inspo is a testament to the range and creative possibilities within the color. It’s virtually impossible to run out of ideas or interesting combinations when working with blue, and it just takes a few scrolling flicks through this roundup to realize it.

This season in particular, there’s an emphasis on sophisticated twists on classic designs that make use of several shades at once. Celeb-favorite aura nails are back, for instance, but not without layered blue tones and gleaming crystals strategically placed for an icy, frosted effect. Swirl nails might have dominated the summer, but the cold-weather versions are just as exciting with intertwining streams of silvery-blue shades. And, naturally, the blue French manicure possibilities are endless — literally, there’s no end to this trend in sight. Check out the best blue nail designs just ahead.

Abstract Splotches

Making excellent use of negative space, this imaginative blue and white manicure incorporates more summery, Mediterranean-blue shades and scalloped, cloud-like white patches to make the bright colors stand out all the more.

Denim Florals

Itty-bitty daisies can be totally appropriate year-round — it just takes the right colors to anchor them seasonally. Here, this soft, muted blue — nearly the color of your favorite faded jeans — is a sweet background for the white-and-orange flowers.

Trippy Cartoon Nails

Did the Minecraft-inspired clothes at Loewe Spring/Summer 2022 leave you feeling...distinctly digital? The pixelated, mind-bending hoodies in the collection might be too much for most but anyone can approximate the look with an equally cool, cartoonish manicure in bold blue shades.

Sparkly Swirls

If the term “holiday manicure” immediately makes you think of a little painted-on Frosty or shimmery strings of lights, this is for you. Icy blue manicures — especially when there’s sparkly, snow-like glitter involved — capture all the blustery magic of the season without being too on the (button) nose.

Geometric Blues

Abstract nail designs are unique in that the most elaborate takes are often the easiest to recreate — that’s the power of linear, geometric nails. This manicure uses different shades of blue and flecks of gold to create an intricate-looking stained glass pattern.

Autumnal Tones

Sometimes, it’s less about the complexity of the design and more about polish color — and color combinations. This unexpected, exciting fusion of rich, midnight-blue nails with classic fall colors like orange and oxblood create a moody palette all its own.

Blue Chrome French

French tips? Check. Chrome finish? Check. Ultra-trendy square-shaped nails? Check, check, check. This simple yet striking blue manicure combines every of-the-moment manicure theme to create the sleekest party nails of the season.

Blue Aura Nails

Aura nails are absolutely everywhere thanks to celebrity fans like Cardi B, but the latest twists on the trend kick it up several notches. In the case of this manicure, different blue tones are combined in hazy, amorphous patches while tiny beads and pearlescent stars twinkle out from them like little constellations.

Celestial Nails

And speaking of constellations, why not just add an entire night sky to your manicure? Nail stickers are an easy, (nearly) foolproof way to add designs to your nails without worrying about painstakingly painting on art.

Baby Blue French Tips

The quiet power of a straightforward nail design — like these baby blue French tips — can’t be discounted. Even the soft, sweet color can work for infinite seasons and situations.

Peekaboo Nails

Business on top, party underneath — are mullet manicures the new wave for 2023? When they’re this chic, all signs point to yes. While the most common underside nail color is red (think Louboutins), this bright blue hidden beneath its deeper, moodier counterpart is a cheerful peekaboo every time you wave hello.

Melted French Tips

Calling it now — melted, Dalí-like French tips will rule the coming year, and this gold-accented manicure perfectly explains why. The haphazard, scalloped edges are cool enough on their own, but the gold outlines made them look like split-open geodes.

Matte Blues

Let color be your only design with a monochromatic manicure in any blue-toned palette. Give them something special with a matte finish or simply allow the chosen shades to shine on their own.