7 Winter 2020 Nail Polish Colors That Will Get You Out Of Your Manicure Rut

With its numbing cold that makes for uncomfortable commutes, long, dark nights spent bundled at home, and the layers upon layers that you're forced to resort to, winter has a way of hiding away any semblance of self when it comes to getting ready. It sounds melodramatic, but it's true — people are just trying to stay comfortable and cozy, even if it means packing away personal aesthetics 'til spring. But there's still one way to express yourself amidst all the flannel, down, and wool: by coating your nails with one of these unexpected winter 2020 nail polish colors.

A fresh manicure can do wonders when it comes to resetting your outlook (on your wardrobe, and on life in general), and luckily there are plenty of new polishes to get inspired by for your next salon visit. But the colors coming out by beloved nail brands and indie lines alike aren't just your typical winter hues — you know, the snow whites, jet blacks, moody purples, and jolly reds you're used to seeing — alongside those classics you'll find cool colors that are reinventing what a seasonally appropriate manicure really looks like.

From whimsical updates on wintry mainstays to warm colors you'd typically spot somewhere tropical, click through to discover the shades to shake up the season (and show off your style).


Icy Blue

It's going to be cold outside for the foreseeable future, so why not give in to the chilly vibes? Go for one of the icy blue nail polishes that are featured big in this season's polish drops — from deeper blues that evoke glacial atmospheres to silvery shades that sparkle like falling snow, they'll make your manicure winter ready in an instant (and look more unique than a standard white or silver).

ORLY's Cold Shoulder

Cold Shoulder is a deep teal with grey-blue glitter that feels unexpected, but will perfectly complement a winter wardrobe.

OPI's Let Love Sparkle

Part of OPI's Hello Kitty collection, Let Love Sparkle is a playful pale blue with platinum sparkle — it's like a supercharged take on a metallic silver winter manicure.

Rich Red

Tend to go for a classic red manicure all year round? You're not alone, and plenty of this season's nail drops included a crimson iteration — but with a winter-ready twist. Reds with richness and depth by way of brown undertones instantly warm up your vibe this time of year; keep an eye out for oxblood, burgundy, and cherry chocolate lacquers to get the look.

essie's Not So Low-Key

Essie's Expressie collection features a variety of shades that dry super-fast so you can get your manicure on point in a flash. Go for Not So Low-Key to get the rich red look for winter — it's a cherry chocolate shade that's got deep brown undertones for a sensual vibe.

Chanel's Richness

Chanel's holiday collection, which is about all things opulent, included two fresh nail lacquers. One is Richness, a bold oxblood shade that's a sophisticated, warm winter-ready take on a classic red manicure. Whether worn for a big day at work or out on a dinner date, it says all the right things.

Cool Gray

What happens when you mix a crisp, pure white with jet black? Gray, of course. It's the ideal middle ground if you can't settle on one end of the spectrum or the other — and better yet, there's a bounty of options out there thanks to the latest additions from some fan fave nail brands. For winter, go with one that's got cool undertones (aka not the putty, taupe-infused varieties) to keep the vibe clean and seasonal.

Côte's No. 101

No. 101 is a smoky gray with a creme finish that's got a cool tone. It'd be a fun shade for playing with negative space nail art, but would be equally as modern covering the full nail.

OPI's Rub-a-Pub-Pub

Darker but still plenty cool is OPI's Rub-a-Pub-Pub, from the brand's recent Scotland-inspired collection. Created by combining an ashy coal with a chilly gray, it's an unexpected shade suitable for cold winter days.


Want to keep everyone on their toes? Opt for one of winter's more unexpected polish shades: bold fuchsia. The vivid pink hue is a playful pick that'll instantly make you feel warm and bright, as if you're about to embark on a tropical getaway. And don't worry, thanks to fuchsia's blue undertones the color still feels cool and weather-appropriate. Choose the shade if you're tired of your tried-and-true red.

Zoya's Rosa

Zoya's new hue Rosa is a pearlescent fuchsia, which emphasizes the shade's blue undertones. It's bright and cheery like a crimson, but with a bit more flair.

Deborah Lippmann's Bright Lights

Bright Lights by Deborah Lippmann is a richer take on fuchsia, with a creamy, opaque finish and violet tones. It's almost like a bold berry hue, and would wonderfully complement rich winter wardrobe tones.

Deep Navy

Indulge in the moodiness of the winter season by reflecting the vibe in your manicure with an inky, edgy shade — and no, it's not black. Deep navy blues are a modern approach to a moody nail, in a way that's bold but still refined. Opt for one with iridescence if you'd like a dreamy angle, or pick a creme finish for a minimalist aesthetic.

Olive & June's HJ

Deep, dark blue that's just a few shades from black is a welcome alternative for winter — especially when it's got a subtle hint of shimmer like Olive & June's HJ (named for Los Angeles-based Helen's Wines founder, Helen Johannesen). Curl up on a cold winter night with this navy nail color and a glass of red, and you'll feel just right.

J. Hannah's Blue Nudes

J. Hannah's Blue Nudes is a creamy take on a deep navy, for a richness that's only otherwise seen in nature (think naturally sourced indigo and an inky blue night sky). Like your go-to pair of jeans, this is a shade you can circle back to again and again this season.

Warm Nude

Recreate the feeling of summer in a subtle way with a warm nude manicure that's reminiscent of tan lines and sun-baked sand between your toes. Look for nude polishes with taupe or peach tones and select one that's a few shades darker than your complexion for an instantly warmer vibe. Since the color's still neutral, you won't have a problem styling with wintery layers (though you may wish you were sporting a swimsuit instead).

Orosa's Dusk

Clean beauty brand Orosa's winter collection was a well-curated drop of just three shades: a jet-black, a prismatic glitter, and a peachy nude. The latter of which, called Dusk, presents an ideal warm nude that mimics desert sands.

Tenoverten's Broome

Broome is a taupe-y tan shade that's rich and opaque enough to coat your nails for a bare-but-better look. With warm undertones, it's captures the vibe of beach sand in a bottle.

Rose Gold

One thing's for certain: Rose gold is the metallic shade du jour. Put your silvers and golds away for the winter and opt for a warm, bronzed rose hue that helps light up your wardrobe. Opt for one with lots of shimmery pigments for ultimate shine — it'll ensure your nails have a bit more impact than a basic nude-pink.

Olive & June's OJSM

Named after Olive & June's third salon location on Los Angeles' westside, OJSM captures the warm rosy glow of a sunset by the beach. It's metallic and glittery at the same time thanks to fine, shimmery pigments that look lit from within.

Nails Inc.'s Major Player

This ultra-glittery bronze shade combines a platinum base with a major pink punch via micro glitter that catches the light from every angle.