The 7 Nail Shapes, Explained
Posted on 03 February 2017
You know that moment when the manicurist asks which shape you want and you go with your tried-and-true oval or squoval. Perhaps it's time to break out of your nail rut. To help inspire you, we asked Sally Hansen global color ambassador Madeline Poole (http://www.mpnails.com) to provide a helpful primer on the seven options at your fingertips.
What it looks like: Squared off at the tip.
Best length: Very short. "When they're longer it's better for them to taper slightly," says Poole.
Shade selection: "This nail length can pull off a lot of bright or impactful colors without looking too loud," says Poole. She recommends bright reds or deep dark shades.
What it looks like: Squared off at the tip with rounded edges.
Best length: Short but with about 2mm of free edge.
Shade selection: "Again since this is good on shorter nails, you can try it with dramatic and dark colors."
What it looks like: Soft rounded with a flat edge at the tip.
Best length: Short.
Shade selection: "Round nails are quite neutral and you can pull off bright and off-the-wall colors, like turquoise. Or try a more classic shade like a raspberry."
What it looks like: Rounded tip like a semi circle.
Best length: About 3mm of free edge at the tip is ideal.
Shade selection: "I like this shape with pretty and feminine pastels."
What it looks like: Rounded edge that's tapered at tip.
Best length: Just a bit longer, around 4 or 5 mm of free edge. "You need a lot of nail length to achieve the look."
Shade selection: "Like the name, almond nails look lovely with neutral colors and nudes."
Squareletto (aka coffin)
What it looks like: Long, dramatically tapered nail with squared off tip.
Best length: Like the almond shape, this nail looks best long.
Shade selection: "I love this nail shape with a matte grays or mauve or greige.
What it looks like: Long and super pointy.
Best length: This needs to be on a fairly long nail to achieve the effect.
Shade selection: "I think they look a bit intense with dark colors so I prefer this style with lighter soft sheer pinks, terracotta or blush."