Photo: Her World Singapore

You can’t go wrong with a bright pastel manicure for summer, but with all the design options out there, you know you could do so much better. To get attention-grabbing digits this season,  go for something a little “extra” to make a subtle statement: think embellishments, geometric shapes, bold hues, gilded accents or even an outline.

Here’s a list of Instagram-approved inspiration you can take to your next salon appointment. Want more nail #inspo

Related: We’ve got all the beauty solutions to staying problem-free in this insanely hot weather 


Colour blocked nails


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The quickest way to a summery Insta-worthy manicure: bright geometric shapes or stripes painted on top of complementary hues. These designs are relatively easy to DIY, especially if you have a steady hand. Even if you don’t, all you need is nail tape and a bit of patience. Apply a base colour, wait for it to dry, and then use some tape to create a stencil for the design you want.



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Then, pick your fave hues and you’re ready to go. Tip: peel off the tape when the polish is semi-dry, so that you get straight lines. Alternatively, skip the base colour and cover your nails with simple chic stripes in any colour combination you desire.


Outlined digits


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Get ready to give the outer edges of your nails some attention. For a “cleaner” look, keep nails bare and outline the outer edges with a glitter polish or a popsicle bright hue like neon green or vibrant coral to complement your beach vacay tan. Want to go all out? Pick a nail base colour in a primary hue and pair it with a patterned outline for maximum impact.



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If you’re looking to DIY this design, invest in a fine nail art brush so you can really get into those edges. Prefer to leave it in the hands of a professional? Make sure you set aside at least an hour and a half for your manicure.


The updated French mani


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Who says French manicures have to be boring? Switch up this classic with a different coloured tip on every finger, a fun glitter tip or even floral decals, the sky’s really your limit. Our tip: combine two trends to really take your French mani to the next level. Think Mondrian lines paired with colourful French tips, or classic white tips paired with cutesy illustrations.



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Pristine French tips can be tricky for DIY newbies, so we’d recommend booking a salon appointment if you don’t have a steady hand. Factor in an extra 30 mins into your nail appointment for simpler designs and at least an hour more for intricate ones.


Gemstone galore


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We’re nuts for this grown-up take on bling-ed out nails. Keep it classy with a neat “nail belt” of gemstones across each nail, or go full glam with a cluster of gems around each cuticle.


For a modern, clean look, pick a neutral nail base (millennial pink is a great option) and avoid all other kinds of nail art on your digits. Since this kind of nail art requires a steady hand, you may want to factor in an extra 45 minutes to an hour for your nail appointment.


Metallic accents


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Inject some edge into your pretty pastel mani by adding a metallic accents in the form of geometric lines. It’s also a great way to make summery colours like orange, green and pink pop.



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This look is actually easy enough to DIY if you’ve got some metallic nail tape lying around. Just make sure your base nail design has dried completely before you paste on the tape. To prevent the tape from peeling off, finish with a long-lasting clear top coat.

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