We Experimented With All 19 of These Popular Nail Colors in 2019


Let’s be honest: The only stressful part about getting a manicure is choosing what color to commit to for the next seven to 14 days. As far as cosmetic appointments go, that’s pretty painless! But then you turn and face the color wall. Now more than ever there are just so many beautiful, slightly different, and cleverly named colors to choose from. I’m still trying to determine if there’s really a substantial difference between OPI’s Russian Navy and Essie’s Saphire (two of my signature winter shades), but that’s not something I ever lose sleep over. It’s easy to change things up next time. 

Unless I’m planning for a special occasion, my typical visit to the nail salon is as impromptu as my color selection. While I like to think polishes appeal to me at random, the truth is I’m not playing the nail salon version of color wheel roulette. According to our panel of industry experts, after polishing thousands of nails and handling hundreds of bottles of lacquer, each manicurist and salon owner can confidently declare which colors are more popular than others. 

In fact, all three of our pros agree that 2019 was a big year for the classics: reds, neutrals, and classic French manicure colors were the most popular, followed by bursts of neon in the summer and moody ‘90s hues as the weather got cooler. Next year, however, promises to be a bit more experimental—after all, we are entering a new decade—so the time is right for a major shakeup, even if it’s only temporary. Keep scrolling for 19 of the most popular nail colors in 2019, plus 10 polishes that are predicted to be big in 2020 according to celebrity crystal nail artist Mazz Hanna, Varnish Lane co-founder and CEO Lauren Dunne, and Sarah Gibson Tuttle, founder and CEO of Olive & June.

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