It’s getting to be that point in the summer when New York City’s random heat waves make staying indoors something of a necessity. But no need to bemoan the need to stick close to an A/C unit — it’s the perfect excuse to book yourself a manicure appointment with one of the season’s cutest new nail designs. Luckily, there are endless varieties of minimalist and maximalist mani options to choose from, like pearlescent lacquers on short rounded tips, cobalt blue negative space designs, or ombré gradient rainbow nails that are just made for celebrating Pride Month.
And while it can be tempting to save a few bucks and attempt to DIY some of these designs at home (seriously, if you can recreate a bejeweled crocodile print with your non-dominant hand, hats off to you), team TZR considers all of these gorgeous nails designs to be the perfect excuse to treat yourself to a salon appointment.
So, in order to save you from a few hours of Instagram scrolling, we compiled a list of our top ten favorite summer manicures of the moment from the industry’s leading nail artists. Check them out below and be sure to book your next appointment ASAP.
Rainbow Gradient Nails
“In the spirit of Pride Month, I’m living for this rainbow gradient manicure with a shimmering metallic finish. The minimalist square tip is also the perfect shape for summer — no accidental chipping when you’re at the pool or beach.” — Hannah Baxter, deputy beauty editor, TZR
Subtle Pearl Nails
“These silver pearly nails are an absolute dream. I love the subtle nature of the light shade with the pearl finish. In the summer sun, this manicure will glisten and glow.” — Maggie Haddad, senior social media strategist, TZR
Mocha Swirl Nails
“Brown nails usually have their moment in the sun, during the fall season, but who says the warm hue can’t work for summer. This fun swirl design makes the cold-weather shade work so well for summer — it reminds me of a mocha swirl frappuccino from Starbucks.” — Annie Blay, associate beauty news editor, TZR
White Crocodile Print Nails
“If you ever see me in a nail design this ambitious, just know I’m in my main character era. These white reptile print nails with silver 3D glob embellishments are probably unlike anything you’ve ever seen. A mix of futuristic, elegant, and straight up eye-catching, this set combines more than one nail art trend to create the ‘It Girl’ of manicures.” — AB
White Marble Nails
“There’s something so fresh and crisp about white nails in the summertime, and this milky marble mani is extra dreamy.” — Catherine Santino, beauty news writer, TZR
“Cobalt blue is my favorite nail color for summer — it’s eye-catching, fresh, and bold, yet still goes with everything. I love how this negative space manicure combines the bright blue with a pop of white against a sheer, neutral base.” - Faith Xue, executive beauty director, BDG
“When in doubt, just pick your favorite popsicle color and pair it with turquoise. It looks so summery, you can match it to your jewelry, and it plays well off of every bright color and neutral out there. This tropical orange with pops of turquoise and white is my version of a dream vacation manicure” — Amanda Ross, Beauty News Writer
Nude & Neon
“I love how this bright kiwi green stands out against the skin tone-matching nude, and it’s all the more exciting with a half-moon placement rather than concentrating the color in a classic French tip. It might be the most minimalist neon manicure I’ve ever seen” — AR
“I’m still on my flame nails grind for summer, and this Barbie pink variation is just a dream. I’ll definitely bring this to my next nail appointment because, as much as I try, I don’t think I’m ambidextrous enough to execute this look at home.” — HB
Swirls Of Purple
“I’m really into this sheer pink color alone but the washed out purple swirls nonchalantly placed on different parts of the nails is just the right amount of nail art I can handle without wanting to change it up after just a few days.” — Kathy Lee, editor-in-chief, TZR