The now nails

Garden wedding

Nudes and pastels are the old favourites for a wedding mani, whether your client is the bride or the guest, and this year’s spring and summer collections are awash with slates, creamy biscuit hues, mints and soft rose shades.

“Summer weddings tend to be more casual and carefree,” says Mandy Cook, sales director at Gerrard International. “Guests never want to upstage the bride, so your client’s nails should highlight the romance and fun of the event.”

“Clients’ colour choice will depend on their outfit, but a classic nude shade goes with everything and is very on-trend for spring,” says Emma Lynwode, business development and education executive for Essie.

Jazz Smedley, educator for Nail Harmony UK, distributor of Gelish and All That Jazz, recommends a pastel coral, “to add a splash of colour”, while Cook suggests nails should contrast the outfit. “If your client is going for a vibrant summer style and wants her outfit to do the talking, contrast it with a beautiful sheer colour on her nails,” she says.

With a big day to look perfect for, clients will need their mani to last, so it’s crucial to get the application right, especially if they have gone for traditional polish over gels. “Always prepare the nail plate before polish application,” says Samantha Sweet, co-founder of CND’s UK distributor Sweet Squared. “Something like CND Scrubfresh will ‘squeak’ the nail clean and temporarily dehydrate it for the perfect dry surface and chip-free colour.”

Bryony McMillan, OPI educator and A Team member, suggests giving your client advice when you’re still finishing their mani and have their full attention. “Make sure they know not to file their nails at home while wearing the polish, as this will cause chipping.”

picture credit: House of Fraser

Summer festival

summer festival

With pro collections this season sporting names like Happy Hippie (Bio Sculpture) and Gathering (Spa Ritual), clients after a mani to top their boho, festival-ready look will have plenty to choose from. The ethereal pinks, shimmering metallic hues and occasional bursts of neon colour will help you create a standout look.

“Other than music, festivals are all about colour and fashion trends,” says McMillan, who recommends the boldest shade in OPI’s Hawaii collection, glitter-flecked yellow Pineapples Have Peelings Too, to really make a statement.

“At the moment, I’ve been seeing all 10 fingers painted a different shade, with one glitter feature nail and a couple with nail art,” says Smedley. “It’s so simple, yet so effective.”

Offering nail art for a bold, statement look is not just for advanced techs. “You can’t go wrong with polka dots,” says McMillan, “and it’s one of the easiest designs to create.” Elise Scholes-Pilkington, educator at Louella Belle, adds, “Why not try a multi-coloured French mani, or a moon manicure done in neon shades, or just layer your colours in geometric shapes.”

Clients really want longevity from their mani if they’re off to a festival, so recommend they go for a gel polish, and don’t forget the aftercare advice. “Don’t let cuticles dry out,” says Lynwode. “Make sure clients take a cuticle oil and apply it daily to retain lovely looking nails.”

Cook agrees, adding, “Suggest they keep their nails at a manageable length, and shaped in a squoval as that’s the best shape to keep nails strong.”

picture credit: Front Line Shop

Beach holiday

Beach holiday

Last summer’s fluorescent hues have been overtaken this year with baking hot corals and tropical seascape azure shades, popping colours that look great against sun-kissed hands and feet. However, the classic beach brights are only half the story, and industry experts predict dusky pastel shades will be firm favourites this summer.

“Personally, I love pastels when my brain is in beach mode, because they look just as beautiful before and after the tan,” says Smedley.

“Summer is all about sculpted, dramatic silhouettes and intense floral hues,” says Sweet, who recommends peach shade Dandelion from CND’s spring collection. “It takes on a metallic richness against a copper tone,” she says.

For clients that want something a bit bolder than a standard manicure, opt for a simple on-trend nail art design. “Negative spa manicures will be really popular this summer,” says McMillan. This type of manicure looks especially good with Hawaii’s mint green That’s Hula-rious.”

A perfect beach look is not just about the fingers. “Offer clients all-in-one beach ready package deals,” says Cook. “Include summer essentials like a manicure, pedicure and a spray tan.” 

Doing a joint mani and pedi gives the chance to get creative with colour combinations. “Clients aren’t so fussed about matching fingers and toes now, so it’s nice to do colour clash or colour blocking, especially with bright colours,” says Scholes-Pilkington. “Strong shades that are opposite one another in the colour spectrum are extremely eye catching, for examplea  pink mani with green toes, or blue fingers and yellow toes.”

 picture credit: Marisota