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This Spring It’s Back to Basics: Mani Monday

As much as we love nail art, we’re better at admiring designs than coming up with them ourselves. That’s why we’ve enlisted Anna Norman, the smarty pants behind Glitter, She Wrote, to be a regular contributor. Every Monday, she’ll be sharing her latest lacquer inspiration—you won’t be satisfied with plain ol’ polish again.


The bright, eye-grabbing colors and intricate nail art that dominated the fashion runways last year have stepped aside. What’s replaced them? Minimalist-chic. In other words, pale, barely-there nails. From Marc Jacobs to Rag & Bone, the fashion scene is all about nudes and neutrals. Here’s how to get the look this spring:

1. The most important step in achieving modern pale nails is starting with a smooth, well-groomed foundation. Use a cuticle oil or plain ol’ olive oil to soften cuticles, and then gently push them back with an orange stick. File nails in one direction to avoid breakage (I love this adorable Madewell for Birchbox nail file!). Short nails are easy to maintain and look great in light shades.

2. Next, choose a polish. For a barely-there look, try the sheer Pret a Pink by Color Club. For a more fashion-forward opaque white, use Deborah Lippmann Amazing Grace. Light polish can become incredibly streaky, so use thin coats, allowing each coat to dry before moving on to the next. Two coats usually works with most colors, but I often use three to four coats with pale lacquers.

3. Let your nails dry completely, and then be sure to add a glossy top coat to give some sheen and shine to your neutral manicure. This step will extend the life of your mani (even though chips are harder to see on pale nails!).

Are you trying pale nails this spring?

For more mani-spiration, check out the rest of Anna’s column: Mani Monday.

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