Nail Art Obsession: The French (Manicure) Renaissance

There’s a French Renaissance happening, and it’s got nothing to do with the art and cultural movement that started in the 15th century. A few of us were sitting in the conference room this morning going over some (TOP SECRET SUPER-EXCITING!) stuff happening here at Spa Week in February, and being the girly girls we are, the topic turned from spa travel destinations to the resurgence of French Manicures. They had been relegated to boring nail-doers for many years in shades of Ballet Slipper, and over the past couple years have been reborn, now disguised in color, metallics, glitter, patterns… MUSTACHES!.. FRUIT!… and mindblowing innovation on the young and trendy set.

Our own Dina’s nails (above) are an all-gel clear manicure with orange French tips and glitter on top, which  inspired our French-obsessed meeting tangent, and this blog post.

All these are photos you’re about to see are ones we pinned on our new Pinterest account (follow us!). Check out our Mani Madness inspiration board for these and more.


The contrasting matte/glossy blacks make these black nails anything but goth.

Anything or anyone with mustaches is hot right now. Especially this guy. Not only is this manicure on trend, it’s a great conversation piece.

Stay in the same color family for your French tips (just add glitter) and keep the shape classic for a subtly playful manicure.

For a more intergalactic rockstar look, try a totally contrasting glitter that fades from tip to bottom.

Use a jewel tone glitter on your base and pair with a glossy black tip – for a tres-glam combo.

Check out Chloe’s nail blog for more on her gradual blackout concept here:

Make a point.

Break it up and ditch the French pattern altogether while still being French-ish, but way edgier.

Neutral polish is having a big moment; bright pastels on the tips makes it playful and even more on-trend.

Go TETRIS! Need I say more?

Choose oozing and electric – this choice is not for the timid. 

The same idea – in white and pastel – is a totally different look.

Say HELLO to kitty, or pick another one of your favorite characters to poke out the tips of your nails.

Try in-versing the colors from one hand to the other.

The only way a traditional French manicure is still relevant… is if it’s attacked by a leopard.


REVERSE IT! The reverse French is a hot ticket – especially if it’s reflective.

The “balloons in the sky” look is the perfect birthday manicure.

We could pin cool manicures ALL DAY! But we have work to do. Tell us below: What’s the edgiest French manicure you’ve ever had? Link us to a picture of it if you have one!

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