5 Salons That Are Bringing Back Nail Art

Nail art may be cool again, but there was a time not so long ago when its popularity was on the brink of extinction. You can chalk its endangered status up to design fatigue, or just an over-saturation in the marketplace. (We admit it, we can all be fickle about beauty crazes.)

But decorous manicures are reemerging in a major way, and there are several salons helping to make the trend relevant again. We highlight them, along with some examples of their work, in the slides ahead. You can check the spots out in person, bring these images to your salon of choice for inspiration, or try them out at home — whatever you do, know that we are 100% behind the renaissance of this trend.

Back Nail Art
Back Nail Art


Vanity Projects

The ultimate cool-girl spot for those looking for more out-of-the-box soon-to-be-copied designs. Think: Kimojis immortalized on your digits (seen here). Or if you’re looking to hop on the Rihanna pointy-nail bandwagon, that’s an option, too. They’re big on gel, but you can pretty much get whatever polish floats your badass boat.



We weren’t kidding about pointy nails being big at this salon. You can top them off with a metallic ombré finish, like this set.


An unconventional Valentine’s Day manicure you can wear way past the 14th.


I’ve been drinking…Well, you know the rest.



Olive & June

On the opposite, pared-down side of the nail art spectrum (and the opposite coast), we have Olive & June. The Beverly Hills salon’s stunning, dainty designs are perfect for the beauty minimalists out there — sometimes less is, in fact, more. All the better when the artists don’t skimp on quality.

Olive & June
Olive & June

Neutral colorblocking is a subtle entry point for nail-art newbies.

Neutral colorblocking is a subtle entry point for nail-art newbies.


Cheetah Girls, Cheetah sisters…



Marie Nails

With salons stretching from NYC to Japan (home to the original salon) Marie Nails has been at the nail art forefront for more than 10 years. No design is too intricate for these accomplished artists; portraits on nails and images of Givenchy-inspired Rottweilers are just some of the requests they’ve tackled.

Marie Nails
Marie Nails

Don’t be tardy to the mani-confetti party.

Marie Nails
Marie Nails

You’ll definitely always feel like somebody’s watching you with these nails.

Marie Nails
Marie Nails



Aptly referred to as the Modern Manicure Studio, Paintbox takes classic nail art designs and updates them. Think: unconventional french manicures and negative-space nails like you’ve never seen before. Its Instagram feed alone provides enough eye candy to inspire any creative individual out there.


This design, dubbed “the oil spill,” is the only kind of pollution we support.


Subtly match your mani to your outfit.



Primp & Polish

Brooklyn-based Primp & Polish is where we imagine a majority of the designs recirculated on Instagram first emerged — as is the case with most Brooklyn shops, right? (Maybe I’m biased, because I live in Brooklyn, but show me the lie.) A prime example is 3-D art, as seen here.

Primp & Polish
Primp & Polish

Say it with us: This manicure is bananas, b-a-n-a-n-a-s.

Primp & Polish
Primp & Polish

You don’t need six arms in order to pull off this detailed octopus design.

Primp & Polish
Primp & Polish




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