How to Layer Nail Polish For Your Perfect Nude Hue

Photo: ImaxTree

Photo: ImaxTree

Fall and winter may be the seasons of dark polishes, but if a classic look is more your scene, take the time to finally perfect your nude. Rather than attempt to find a single polish that suits your skin tone, the nail artist’s preferred trick is to layer nail polish colors until you find a compatible hue. Manicurist Jin Soon Choi, who we dare say is one of the masters of this technique, frequently relies on this approach when she’s working with models during Fashion Week.

“Layering nail polish helps pinpoint a shade that is complementary to your skin tone, almost like custom-blended makeup,” says Choi. When it comes to nudes, finding that perfect hue for your skin tone is imperative. “Choosing the wrong nude can make your skin appear dull, so try to find a slightly contrasting sheer that makes your skin tone more lively and fresh.”

Choi offers simple guidelines: “For darker skin tones, cream nude or beige nude is best. Medium skin tones work well with peach nude or a sheer cream nude.” Those with pale skin should opt for sheer polishes with pink undertones instead. “If you’re not sure which nude is best for your skin tone, simply apply a coat of cream sheer like JINsoon Tulle ($18,, which acts like a clean base coat,” so your “nude” reflects your actual skin tone instead. Genius.

To find that match with layering, Choi suggests experimenting with colors that have similar thickness and formulas, as well as shades within the same family. “Cream finish color should never be combined with chalky colors, and sheer nudes should not be combined with bright and dark colors because they show the colors underneath,” Choi says.

After first testing your mixture on a piece of paper, paint the nails to compare the shade to your skin tone. “Layer two similar colors in an ombré-like fashion to find the right color for yourself. Even though you layer a color on top of your nails, it still looks like a part of the first color,” she says.

Read more: The Perfect Fall Nail Colors for Your Skin Tone