What Color Nail Polish to Wear

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Nail polish can help you look put together and professional or add a pop of color to a party outfit. Whether you opt for a pale neutral, classic red or a deep steely gray, consider what your polish says about you. Choose a polish shade that works with your skin tone, your outfit and your overall look.


Types

Nail polish colors range from classic nail colored neutrals to soft pastels, bold brights and dramatic dark tones. Nudes and neutrals, including shades of pale pink, peach, taupe and beige can work with any outfit and any skin tone. Broaden your nail color palette by selecting colors that work with your usual clothing choices. These colors will typically flatter your complexion and match your wardrobe.

Significance

The more color you wear on your nails, the louder the statement. If you need a conservative look, choose a neutral nail. Classic shades, including pink, coral and red may also be appropriate. Vivid color creates a more fashionable or avant garde look, including shades of blue, green, orange or yellow. Dark colors, including black, gray, navy, violet and deep green may work best in the fall or winter months. Consider creating a basic nail wardrobe that works with your skin tone, including one good, basic neutral, a classic red, a pink, rose or coral shade, at least one fun, punchy color and a dark, rich shade you love to match your polish to any mood.

Considerations

Wear and tear affects your manicure. If you don’t have time to tend to your nails or have difficulty doing a neat paint job, consider a neutral close to your natural nail color. Chips are less apt to show. You can save bolder tones for your toes. Dark, rich shades may look best on shorter nails and do require more upkeep or regular polish replacement to look their best.

Features

Nail polishes come in a number of different finishes. Shimmery or glittery polishes may be perfect for parties, while traditional glossy finishes make up the majority of polishes available. Matte polishes create an entirely different look that is velvety, rather than shiny. Additional effects, including classic French tips or an ombre appearance may be available if you opt to have your nails done at the salon instead of painting them at home.

Warning

Polishes often look different on your nails than they do in the bottle. Some colors may turn out lighter, darker or have a different finish than you expect. You may also find that the bright orange that looked fun in the bottle makes your hands look aged and dirty or that the tan that seemed like an ideal neutral just makes you look ill. Try out colors before you buy in some shops, or experiment in the nail salon.

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