Why “Floating” Nail Art is the Next Big Thing

Shannon Farrell
Why “Floating” Nail Art is the Next Big Thing
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Crazy nail art is fun to look at, but so impractical. Now the trend is moving toward minimal designs you can create yourself and wear anywhere, as seen at the recent spring 2014 Fashion Week shows. “A nude nail with nail art over the top is going to be huge — like floating nail art,” says butter LONDON’s Global Colour Ambassador Katie Jane Hughes. “The more minimal the nail art is, the better it looks.” Here are our favorite floating designs to wear now.

Lela Rose

For Lela Rose, Hughes made the half moon trend more subtle, starting with butter LONDON Nail Foundation ($19, butterlondon.com) to create a clean, nude base. She then applied Lady Muck ($19), a periwinkle blue, in a half-moon shape at the cuticle. 

Photo: butter LONDON

ICB by Prabal Gurung 

Hughes started with butter LONDON Leccy, a sheer, blue opal fleck overcoat (available in October) and then decorated with holographic foil down the center. She finished with glitter tips on three accent nails.  

Photo: butter LONDON

Jenni Kayne

OPI manicurists also went for a subtle half moon design, coloring the models’ nails with the nude Don’t Pretzel My Buttons ($9, ulta.com) and creating the semi-circle shape with Alpine Snow ($9), an opaque white. 

Photo: OPI

Holmes & Yang

To add color to the sheer coat of OPI So Many Clowns...So Little Time ($9), nails were decorated with a slanted French tip using I Saw…U Saw…We Saw…Warsaw ($9), a deep blue. Want to try it? Use Scotch tape to create easy-to-paint guides on your nails.

Photo: OPI

Yigal Azrouël

Over a base of Morgan Taylor Mattes a Wrap, manicurists painted on super thin black French tips using Little Black Dress ($8.50 each, morgantaylorlacquer.com). To get the look at home, apply black with a skinny nail striper or eyeliner brush.


Christian Siriano

Lisa Logan created the colorblock design for Red Carpet Manicure. After applying a nude base using the shade Fake Bake, she painted a vertical line of white polish down the center, and finished with yellow (The Perfect Pair) on top of the white to make the neon really pop. 


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