Like fashion trends, nail trends always come back around. In the early 2010s, geometric nails were everywhere. I distinctly remember being enamoured with Wah! Nails pop-up in Topshop, and being mesmerised by the geometrical nail art designs that they had perfected with such precision. There was something about those graphic squares and abstract negative space triangles that had all of us running to book in for in nail art. Or, if you were like me, fail miserably at recreating the look at home—my unsteady hands could never.
After a long hiatus, I'm here to tell you that geometric nails finally feel fresh again for 2023. So much so, trend experts at Wethrift have spotted that searches for geometric nails are up 243% on Google, while Pinterest searches for the nail art trend are up 89%. It's also taking TikTok by storm, with the #geometricnails hashtag amassing 1.4 million views. And the celebrities are on board too, with Hailey Bieber's nail technician, Zola Ganzorigt, creating a monochromatic geometric manicure for Vanessa Hudgens.
The beauty of the trend is that you can go all out with colourful geometric shapes, or give a subtle nod to the trend with more minimalist geometric shapes, whether it's negative space shapes or just on an accent nail. Plus, the trend lends itself well to any colour palette, looking equally eye-catching in monochrome as it does in bright nail colours. Who knew geometry could be so chic?
If you're ready to get on board with geometric nail designs, you come to the right place. We've found all the best geometric nail art ideas to get you inspired your your next salon visit, plus the products to perfect it at home if you're DIY'ing.
Geometric Nail Designs
Proof that black and white are the perfect combination for monochrome geometric nail art.
I love this subtle take on the geometric nail trend, with a minimalist sweep of polish down one half of the nails.
This look is surprisingly easy to recreate at home. Apply a nail tape over the area, paint over your polish and allow to dry, then remove the tape for a clean finish.
How fun are these checkerboard nails? Go for a different shade on each nail for a fun twist.
More of a minimalist? These white grid nails are an ideal way to dip a fingernail into the geometric nail trend.
I'm in love with this lilac design.
Semi circle shapes work so well on the tips and base of the nails.
These geometric nails are incredibly chic and understated.
Negative space shapes look fresh on just one or two nails.
I'm obsessed with this winning colour combo of olive green and burgundy.
Small geometric squares work so well on short nails.
How fun are these colourful Tetris shapes?
Pixel nail art is the geometric trend I never knew I wanted to try.
Abstract shapes and circles are a perfect pairing on this negative space mani.
I love how this minimal mani gradually fades into negative space.
Angular half moons are a chic take on the geometric trend.
Dots and swirls looks so cool in black and white.
This is inspiring me to dig out all of my nail polish colours to recreate this fun grid manicure.
I love the clean, crisp lines of these circles, squares and triangles.
Pastels make those geometric shapes pop.
Checkerboard nails feel super sleek in glossy black.
If you don't want to go all out, then micro shapes are the way to go.
Turn your usual French manicure to a 45-degree angle for a geometric spin.
Checkerboard squares look great as a floating French tip accent.
Your Geometric Nails Starter Kit
A milky polish is the ideal base colour if you're doing negative space nail art.
A nail art brush will make DIY'ing your geometric nails so much easier—ensure it has a fine tip for precise application.
A white polish is a good base colour keep on hand for geometric nail polish designs.
if you want to create sharp lines, pick up these nail guide stickers for clean lines every time.
Eleanor Vousden is the beauty editor of Who What Wear UK. She was previously deputy editor at Hairdressers Journal, health writer at Woman & Home and junior beauty editor at beauty website Powder. She has also contributed to Wallpaper and Elle Collections with written and styling work.
Working as a beauty journalist since 2015 after graduating in fashion journalism at the London College of Fashion, she has been highly commended at the BSME Talent Awards and also contributed to Powder, winning Website of the Year at the PPA Awards for her work in beauty journalism.
Eleanor’s journalistic focus is to provide readers with honest and helpful beauty content. Through words, video and live broadcast, she has interviewed several celebrity makeup artists, hairstylists and top dermatologists throughout her career. She has a particular interest in finding solutions for acne and eczema, which she has experienced firsthand. She has also amassed a large collection of fragrances and can never say no to a new candle.
When she’s not writing or testing the latest beauty product or treatments, she’s on the seafront in her hometown of Brighton and Hove, where she lives with her partner.
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