Summer Nail Art Trends for 2020 — Expert Tips, Photos

Nail art is having a renaissance. Adding color to our tips is about the easiest, most temporary way to try something new and joyful right now. As we’ve sheltered in place, people have perfected their at-home manicure skills and adding playful designs to their paint jobs. Others are experimenting with the ease of press-on nails with curated sets from their favorite artists or brands.

Although nail trends are like the rabbits of the beauty world lately, popping up and multiplying at dizzying rates, three have impressed Allure editors most with their consistency: the French Manicure, bare negative space, and new nail shapes. We asked three New York City-based nail artists to create three different looks based on one trend of these summer nail art trends.

Lolly Koon was tasked with reimagining the French Manicure. She riffed off the idea of the classic look for her different takes on it. “It doesn’t have to be a perfect C curve,” Koon tells Allure. Because many of us are doing our own nails and having to paint with our non-dominant hand, she offered designs that don’t require such. 

Back in December 2019, Gina Edwards predicted bare negative space would be a major 2020 nail trend. Of course, she was right. For Allure, she thought up three more iterations. “For even the faint of heart who don’t want a lot of boldness on their nails, I think [bare nails] are a nice introduction to nail art,” she explains. Plus, Edwards simply appreciates the beauty of raw nails with accents built on top — kind of like pairing graphic eyeliner with fresh skin.

New nail shapes have also been taking over tips not only here but also South Korea. Stateside, Naomi Yasuda believes the rise of nail art has spurred people to experiment with unexpected tips, too, to take things one step further. She’s wielded tips beyond just round, square, and almond for over a decade, so we knew she’d have fun nail shape ideas to share.

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