In case you missed it, velvet is one of the year’s most coveted fabrics. From leggings and dresses to couches and even lamps, velvet textiles are taking over. And now, the luxuriously soft fabric is making its way to the beauty scene with nails that seem to mimic the beloved fuzzy finish. Fittingly, this new nail trend has been dubbed velvet nails. These manicures are characterized by shimmering, semi-metallic polishes that, in the right light, look just like velvet.
Unlike some nail trends, velvet nails typically rely solely on the velvety appeal to make a statement. While some artists will use the finish—which is most often created with flocking powder or magnetic polishes—to create elevated French manicures or abstract designs, for the most part, it comes down to perfectly painted, solid velvet shades. And there are many different hues to choose from, from sage green and amethyst to champagne and burnt orange.
To help you find your perfect shade, ahead, discover the 21 best velvet nail ideas to show your manicurist.
California-based nail artist Amy Le was one of the first manicurists to bring velvet nails to light. Here, she shows off a shimmering sage nail look that beauty lovers have been fawning over since she first posted them.
Prefer pink shades? Here, you can see how pretty a mauve velvet manicure can look. Let’s just call it the new neutral. To snag the look, pick up a bottle of Live Love Polish’s Magnetic Nail Polish ($15) in the shade Crystal Rose.
We love a velvet manicure in action. Here, witness how magical a neutral champagne hue can look. We’re getting major crystal vibes.
If you want to keep it cool, opt for a silver shade. Lucky for us, we can see how stunning the icy hue looks in different lights thanks to Boston-based manicurist Amy Tran.
Velvet French Tips
Remember, you can achieve a velvet finish even if you don’t dedicate your full nail to the trend. If you want to have even more fun with it, consider opting for different colors on each hand.
One word: Gorgeous. When using Live Love Polish’s Magnetic Nail Polish, you use a wand to disperse the pigments to create the velvety allure. Depending on which side you use, you can achieve different effects. Here, the co-founder of the company shows how using the rounded sign can create a softer take on the velvet nail polish trend.
We love a two-tone manicure—especially when it’s paired with a velvet finish. To get this exact look, use Live Love Polish’s Velvet Nail Polish ($15) in the shades Frozen Mist and Faerie Glow.
This has us craving mint chocolate chip ice cream—anyone else? We love how soft and sweet these minty nails look. To snag the look, use The Gel Bottle Inc’s Gel Nail Polish ($9.50) in Bluefin and BrillBirdUK’s Gel Polish ($17) in Platinum Cat Eye.
Nude Velvet Tips
So subtle and still such a statement. To snag the look, use French manicure shaping stickers and BrillBird’s Cat Eye Gel & Lac ($16) in Pearl White.
These shimmering blue nails remind us of the natural wonder of bioluminescence.
Velvet Snowflake Nails
Just because velvet nails typically stand on their own doesn’t mean you can’t weave designs into your manicure, too. Take these, for example: As it turns out, dainty snowflakes and shimmering velvet nails look stunning together.
Opal Velvet Nails
We could see these as wedding nails. With serious shimmer and a subtle shade, they look ready for a fairytale moment.
The way these silvery nails catch the light is truly beautiful, worthy of a special event or just adding an extra touch to your everyday look.
Velvet Star Nails
Another option for folks looking to tie velvet shades into detailed manicures is to use stars and gems in the same hue. Case in point: these silver dotted and starred nails.
Pale Pink Velvet
We love how Tran transformed the typical velvet nail trend into an abstract work of art. With subtle pink shimmer and swooping silhouettes, this manicure is one that’s quite difficult to look away from.
Velvet Coffin-Shaped Faux Stiletto Tips
While velvet nails are typically soft and subtle—even when paired with designs—that’s not to say that you can’t go a bit bolder with your nail art. Here, black shimmering stars are paired with minty velvet for yet another pretty take on the velvet nail trend.
These simply silver velvet nails are perfect for winter. They’re icy and soft, reminding us as much of snow and cold temperatures as cozy sweaters and warm nights by the fire.
Speaking of fire, these gold velvet nails give off a seriously warm vibe.
Looking for a way to elevate your favorite nude nail look? Here’s one idea you won’t want to pass up.
Another option is to combine the velvet nail trend with another popular look. Say, for instance, ombré nails. After all, how pretty is this purple fade?
Pale Gray Velvet
Good news: You can get this exact look using Live Love Polish’s Magnetic Nail Polish ($15) in Ethereal Chill. Cool, right?