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As much as we love neon nail polishes and color-block nail trends, there’s something about light pink nail polish that keeps us coming back, no matter the season. Sometimes a girl just wants a beautifully soft, pale pink manicure that’s as clean as it is timeless; a true classic. It’s a crisp and elegant hue that makes you feel a little more sophisticated as you go about your day (not to mention that when it chips, it tends to be less noticeable against your exposed nails). But of course, there are about a million pale pink options out there, in every shade from blush to bashful. So how do you find the right one for you? That’s where we come in.
Whether you’re a cotton candy girl, a peachy-pink lover or you’re looking for something with a little more commitment to Sparkle Motion, we’ve rounded up the very best light pink nail polish options out there. We’ve got some long-lasting gel picks, a vegan option and plenty of good-old-fashioned polishes. Prepare to fall in love with something a little lighter—and if you’ve got a wedding on the calendar, now’s the time to stock up, because you’ll never go wrong rocking a pale pink mani to a wedding.
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Sally Hansen in Pink Cloud
You’ll be walking on cloud nine with this pretty vegan polish on your nails. The vibrant pink hue is like an early morning sunrise in a bottle.
OPI Nail Polish in You Have Got That Glas-Glow
With plenty of shimmer, this versatile hazy pink nail polish is part of OPI’s Scotland collection, and can be worn all year round.
Le Mini Macaron in Honey Ginger
Skip the salon with this cheerful pink shade. You can give yourself a high-quality gel manicure that’ll last up to three weeks. Just make sure you have an LED or UV lamp on hand for drying purposes.
Essie in Wire-Less Is More
This seasoned and beyond iconic nail polish brand has several cult classic colors in rotation, including a handful of pink shades. One of the lesser-known variations is this dusky rose quartz with just a hint of shimmer.
Nails Inc. in Mayfair Lane
The brand’s Life Hack Personality Nail Polish Collection includes this milky pink-nude with a high shine finish and ultra-creamy texture that goes the distance.
Deborah Lippmann in Cake by the Ocean
Lippmann’s Gel Lab Pro range is top-rated for its ability to coat the nails using healthier ingredients without compromising the effects of traditional gel polish. This baby pink creme is as chic as it gets with a full coverage finish for when you want your pink to pop a bit more.
Butter London Patent Shine 10X Nail Lacquer in Royal Blush
The newest blush shade to join the brand’s high-shine collection is this limited-edition soft pink, made with a patented polymer technology to prevent chipping.
Essie in Mademoiselle
This shade is a cult classic for a reason—it’s basically the perfect understated, blush-toned nail polish. The formula has a jelly-like consistency, which means it’s extra-easy to use; two coats will give you gorgeously shiny, healthy-looking nails that you won’t be able to get enough of.
Sally Hansen Miracle Gel in Creme de la Creme
If you like your pink a little creamier, Creme de la Creme is for you. An amazing super-pastel pink shade that flows on easily and is totally opaque in two coats, this shade is universally flattering and appropriate for both office and summertime fun.
JINsoon Nail Lacquer in Nostalgia
If baby pinks aren’t quite in your wheelhouse, relax: beige-toned pinks are back, and they’re totally sophisticated. Nostalgia is the best dusty rose, not-quite-pink that we’ve ever seen, and the superlative JINsoon formula means that you’ll get a full week’s wear out of this manicure without any chips whatsoever. Score.
Revlon ColorStay Gel Envy Nail Enamel in Beginner’s Luck
Revlon has really stepped up their nail game over the last few years, and Beginner’s Luck is basically our dream polish: sheer yet shimmery, and the perfect shade of pointe shoe pink. And the best part? You won’t need a UV lamp to cure this gel-like formula; it’s semi-opaque in two coats and lasts a full ten days once dry.
Essie in Ballet Slippers
Another cult favorite pale pink, Ballet Slippers is slightly more opaque and cream-colored than Mademoiselle, but it’s still a total classic of the genre. A blush-toned white, this shade achieves full opacity after two or three coats and allows just a hint of your nail’s natural white to peek through. Simple, clean, elegant; a perfect shade for bridal manicures.
OPI Soft Shades Collection in Rosy Future
This shimmering pink shade is as shiny as it is gorgeous. Sheer yet pigmented with a slightly purple shine, this polish catches the light—and our attention—in all the right ways. Pro tip: Make sure you don’t forget a topcoat with this shade; you really need it to achieve the shimmer effect!
Dior Vernis Gel Shine and Long Wear Nail Lacquer in Tra-La-La
A cool-toned cotton candy pink, Tra-La-La is the perfect way to embrace your inner Barbie without looking like you’ve just escaped from the Dreamhouse. The slightly sheer color and glassy shine (even without a top coat) means this Dior shade is forever ranking amongst our favorites.
Deborah Lippmann in Dream a Little Dream of Me
We love an unusual pink, and this peachy-pink shade contains a sprinkling of pale blue micro glitter to liven up your nails. Sheer and gorgeous, it also makes a perfect base for a modern French manicure that totally doesn’t suck. And because it’s so sheer, you can also use it as a spangly topcoat for your peach and coral polishes. Who doesn’t love a multi-tasker?
Cote No. 11
All of Cote’s polishes, including this opalescent pink, are cruelty-free, vegan, and free of the most common harmful ingredients, including toluene, camphor, and formaldehyde.
Originally published December 2018. Updated October 2020.