8 Summer 2016 Polishes To Try [Pastels + Brights]

Since you should all be DIY-ing your manicures at home like pros by now, it makes it a lot easier to change your polish more frequently. Whether you stick to softer hues or bold shades, I have 8 summer polishes to try straight from the trendsetters in the fashion/beauty world, along with some trends to watch for!

8 Summer Polishes To Try | 8 nail polishes shades for summer

The trends
  • Notice nail formulas that help the health of your nails/cuticles with more nature-infused ingredients like matcha, spirulina, marula and other oils.
  • Pastel tones always make an appearance in the spring/summer, but for 2016, opt for ones with a greyed out tone.
  • Brighter colors contrast against glowing summer skin when used in shades of intense purple, royal/cobalt blues and coral reds (I personally prefer to keep these types of shades on my toes in the summer.)
8 Summer Polishes To Try | pastel nail polish shades for summer
The pastels
  • Pantone’s Color(s) of the Year are Rose Quartz (a pink) and Serenity (a baby blue). Look for milky shades of light rose and chalky blue, like Zoya’s Laurel and Essie’s Bikini So Teeny.
  • Greyed out lavender makes for a refreshing take on a neutral nail and was seen on several S/S ’16 runways. I chose Essie’s Go Ginza as my favorite opaque, creamy lavender.
  • Something different we haven’t seen for a while, ivory and champagne pearlescent shades are back in a big way – but this time, think of them as more ‘mermaid,’ and less early 1990s. Look for holographic, opalescent shades like Zoya’s Leia which reflects holographic purple, pink and gold in the light.

Essie Bikini So Teeny, Essie Go Ginza, Zoya Laurel, Zoya Leia Nail Polish Swatches(from left to right: Essie “Bikini So Teeny,” Essie “Go Ginza, ZOYA “Laurel,” ZOYA “Leia”)

Bright Polishes To Try This Summer| 8 Summer Polishes To Try

The brights
  • Whether you stick with the deeper, ocean shades from the fall/winter or lighten up with a punchy royal/cobalt, you’ll be on trend with a sophisticated blue polish that acts as neutral as a pair of denim jeans. I love the easy-to-apply formula of OPI’s My Pal Joey.
  • Everyone should own a super shiny, creamy hot pink polish and whether it’s magenta, fuchsia or neon, it works this season. If you haven’t tried Julie G’s polish formula, it’s incredibly opaque and shiny in one coat and shade Damsel is perfect for your next summer vacation.
  • Corals tend to be pretty traditional summer shades, but make sure your coral leans more tomato red. Try a matte topcoat next time for a different finish. My all-time summer favorite pedicure shade is OPI’s Cajun Shrimp!
  • If you’re just NOT a pink girl, try a vibrant purple like Wet n Wild’s Megalast salon nail color in On A Trip. The formula has one of those wide, flat brush which make application super fast and opaque. It rivals my more expensive brands.

4 Bright Nail Polishes To Try For Summer | OPI Cajun Shrimp, Wet n Wild On A Trip, OPI My Pal Joey, Julie G Damsel nail polish swatches(from left to right: OPI “Cajun Shrimp,” Wet n Wild “On A Trip,” OPI “My Pal Joey,” Julie G “Damsel”)

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8 Nail Polish Shades To Try This Season on brighterdarling.com

Which shades caught your eye for this season? Any relentless favorites I should check out… comment below and let me know. I can’t make a decision on my favorite pastels, but know my pedicure is going to be Cajun Shrimp 90% of the summer (#creatureofhabit)!

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Happy polishing,


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