Nail trends to try this summer – 8 of the hottest from metallic to sculptural and barbie nails

Nail trends can be fleeting, but they’re also seasonal and with summer coming, it’s time to change things up with your nails too. If you’re thinking of freshening up your look, the most fun way to do it is by heading to the nail salon to try out one of the hottest trends for summer 2023, selected by the experts below.


From alien silver-covered nails at Huishan Zhang’s Spring/Summer 2023 show to sculptural molten shapes at Trussardi, the runways ushered in a metallic mood this summer. They don’t have to be gold or silver. “I think the best way to keep things fresh is to expand your color palette,” says nail artist Ama Kouashi. “Don’t be so traditional in your choices. My metallic references are either colors worn by African aunties or vintage cars, both are great! You’ll find the best random metallic shades in bargain beauty boxes at the drugstore or hair stores.”

To take things up a notch, nail artist Mo Qin recommends using chrome powder. “Use a permanent art gel or permanent topcoat before applying the chrome powder. Then apply the powder to the nail in one brushing motion. Brush off any excess powder with a fluffy brush and apply a coat of gel top coat to seal it in.”

Buttocks on pastel

From soft neoprene orange to Pepto Bismol pink, poppy pastels are having a moment. Case in point: Hailey Bieber’s recent buttercup-colored mani. The key to this trend is nailing the color: “It’s not as sleepy as regular pastels, but it’s not as loud as neon either,” says nail artist darling. “They fall right in the middle. I love Titan Teal by Navya.”


It’s going to be a hot pink summer this season, thanks to Greta Gerwig’s highly anticipated film, Barbie, starring Ryan Gosling and Margot Robbie. Highlight pink-static nails, cute love hearts and hyper-feminine sparkles. Check out nail artist Sigourney Nuñez’s recent offering above.

Modern grunge

Is your inner Wednesday Addams keeping you from diving into the Barbiecore trend? Enter Grungecore, which could be just right for summer, as it turns out. “Vivid, aura-inspired nail art topped with bronze outlines makes the nails a little edgy,” says Nunes. “To get the look, you can use a nude base shade and sponge on a bright eyeshadow to create the aura effect. Then use silver gel or black gel to create abstract lines that look like flame outlines. Add chrome dust to the outline, clean off the excess and finish with a top coat.”

Flowing effects

Over the glazed nail trend? Think a clean iridescent effect for this season’s update. The color of moonlight and mermaid scales, it’s a romantic take on any everyday classic. “Use a clear iridescent shade over a clear or milky neutral base,” says nail artist Holly Falcone. “I love Lights Lacquer in Clara or Orly Crystal Healing, which I used for Sandy Liang’s Fall/Winter 2023 show.”

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French manicure with square tips

Leave it to Kendall and Kylie Jenner to create this season’s hottest nail trend: French tips. Their BFF Hailey Bieber may advocate maximalist neon numbers, but the Jenner sisters are baring it all with a demure alternative. They recently showed off their square-topped take on the classic French mani on Instagram.

Clear French tips

“They remind me of sexy high heels,” says celeb favorite Soji Nails of another of this season’s freshest trends: clear French tips. To create the look, Soji suggests investing in a high-quality top coat and building gel products. “I recommend Apres Tips in the US and Yoho Korea products from Asia.”

Sculptural nails

From bulbous shapes inspired by Yayoi Kusama to 3D cherries that look good enough to eat, manicurist Tyler Phoenix is ​​all about sculptural shapes this season. “More is more this summer!” For those brave enough to try the trend at home, Phoenix recommends finding a good styling gel to play around with. “Research and practice different methods,” says Phoenix. “See nail artists and techniques outside your country! There is so much to learn.” If you fail, book a salon and leave it to an expert.

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