There has never been a single moment in Nicole Kidman’s entire 35-year career when the actor’s shied away from embracing edgier aspects of her personality. She takes on experimental film roles, she makes daring fashion choices, and she channels so much of her creativity into her hair and makeup — and now her manicures, too. For the February issue of Vogue Australia, the actor’s done up to look like a modern (and very glamorous) Medusa, complete with a scaly, shiny snake encircling her neck. Personally though, it’s Kidman’s black French tips that really make a statement. It’s not often that the star breaks out of the box with a decorative manicure, and this cover look officially ushers her into the world of nail art.
The cover, shot by Steven Klein, dropped on Jan. 24 to total pandemonium. Everyone from Kidman’s fans to her fellow celebrities gathered in the comments to gush over the theme and lead photo. In the caption explaining the new issue, the magazine even revealed that it was actually Kidman’s idea to be shot with the snake in the first place, describing it as “alluring.” The same can be said for her long, ballet-shaped nails, featuring boxy black tips and a glossy finish.
Celebrity and editorial nail artist Honey created the incredible look for the cover, one that also happens to be firmly on-trend. Upon closer inspection, the manicure doesn’t seem to be fully almond-shaped or too boxy and overtly square. They’re actually a newer style called “ballet nails” that get its name from pointe shoes worn by ballerinas, tapered at the tips and much softer in structure.
Inversions on or remixes of the classic French manicure have been dominating celebrity nails for a few years now. More and more A-listers like Kidman co-signing the look means it likely won’t slow down either. The look is a newer one for Kidman, but it fits right in with the themes she explores in her Vogue interview. “You can try different things, all the time, which is what excites me,” the snippet the magazine shares on Instagram reads. “You can either become more rigid as you become older, but you can also become more free.”