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We’ve all wasted too many precious minutes at the nail salon staring at rows of gorgeous lacquers, stumped on where to even begin. Luckily, we’ve enlisted some of the top pros in the business to guide us through the best nail polish colors of the moment—and help you deal with this ultimate #firstworldproblem. From rich purples to vivid blues, here’s exactly which hue to pick for your next mani.
Deep Burgundy: Spotted at shows such as Derek Lam and Marchesa during the Fall 2015 season, this rich shade is, according to manicurist Miss Pop, a “re-Vamp, pun intended” from the ’90s, and she’s all for it. She suggests Essie’s In the Lobby, a rich wine that will make you feel like you’re in a time warp. Manicurist Geraldine Holford recommends Dior Vernis Cosmopolite, a brand-new take on burgundy that can be worn with just one coat, and flatters any skin tone. (L to R: Dior Vernis Cosmopolite, $27; Essie’s In the Lobby, $8; Chanel Coup De Coeur, $27)
Lush Greens: Camouflage greens are also in this season, and Chanel’s Vert Obscur is your surefire way to stand out with the trend notes Miss Pop. If you want a moodier take on the hue, manicurist Fleury Rose recommends using Illamasqua’s Rampage, a perfect hunter green shade, and layering it over one coat of black polish. (L to R: Illamasqua Rampage, $18; NARS Night Porter, $20; Chanel Vert Obscur, $27)
Vivid Purple: A classic fall shade, we’re always on the hunt for that perfect purple that doesn’t read too “black” once applied. Deborah Lippmann’s Miss Independent is just that according to Miss Pop—it’s a “vampy eggplant” that picks up a bit of a ’70s vibe, perfect for this coming season. If you’re looking for purple with a hint of shimmer, try out Essie’s Frock ‘n Roll, which Fleury notes will make you the vampiest siren at any party. (Essie Frock ‘n Roll, $8; Deborah Lippmann Miss Independent, $18; Dolce&Gabbana Amethyst, $27)
Charcoal Gray: If you want to take the sophisticated route with your nail shade, try out a gray as seen at shows such as Proenza Schouler and Wes Gordon. Manicurist Geraldine recommends Priti NYC Lambstail Cactus, a dark gray polish with extremely fine glitter pieces. “This shade has stood the test of time because it’s flat out chic,” she says. “It pairs perfectly with all of your fall clothing and is equally appropriate at the office or late-night on the town.” (L to R: Priti NYC Lambstail Cactus, $15; Zoya Tris, $9; China Glaze Ever Glaze Coastal Mist, $7)
Dark Blue: Spotted at shows such as Costello Tagliapetra and Karen Walker, jewel tone blues will be a go-to as the weather cools down. To get that hint of metallic that we all love, Fleury recommends Revlon Color Stay Gel Envy in All In because it gives a “disco in an opium den vibe.” She warns though, always stick to dark, sparkly finishes when choosing metallic blue polishes, otherwise you can veer into bad ’80s territory. (L to R: Revlon Color Stay Gel Envy All In, $5; Dior Darling Blue, $27; Essie Spun in Luxe, $8)
Classic Neutrals: Neutrals will always be a must-have, no matter what the season. Holford notes that Smith and Cult’s Feathers and Flesh is “the new standard in nude polish—it’s a universally flattering shade that has a slight shimmer, so it picks up the colors in your skin, creating the perfect nude just for you.” (L to R: Smith and Cult Feathers and Flesh, $18; I Cannoli Wear OPI, $9.50; Sally Hansen Gray-t Escape, $8)
Graphic design by Candace Napier.