The 10 Best Nail Polish Colors of Summer 2020

Erin Lukas

Summer plans might currently be on hold, but don't cancel the best season of the year just yet. Warmer days are ahead and bold, bright nails can help hold you over until we're able to live our best warm weather lives again. After all, it's the little things, right?

In the mood to play with neon yellow? Want to upgrade your go-to neutral manicure for the upcoming season? From vibrant to subtle, this summer's most popular nail polish colors cover all the bases.

To get a complete lowdown on what shades are trending, I turned to the experts. And according to three top nail salons, nature is in: Earth tones, flower-inspired shades, and pastels are going to be on all of our fingertips this summer.

Ahead, the 10 best nail polish colors for all of your summer 2020 manicures.

VIDEO: How to Remove Your Gel Manicure Without Going to the Salon


JINsoon Nail Polish in Milieu

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If you've been keeping things simple while nail salons are closed, this smoky gray with a hint of shimmer will be a nice change of pace from your typical nude and pastel pink polishes. "This color is a twist on the traditional nude — it’s not a typical brown or a typical pinky nude," says Jin Soon Choi, editorial manicurist and founder of JINsoon in New York City. "This color can be a great transformer with different nail shapes and lengths. It can be hip, provocative, and modern."

To buy: $18; jinsoon.com.

Deborah Lippmann Gel Lab Pro in Its Raining Men

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"I think that since most of us have been sequestered to our homes and neighborhoods, the colors that bloom locally and naturally are the ones we are currently most attracted to," says Michelle Saunders, celebrity manicurist and founder of Saunders & James nail salon in Oakland, Calif.

That being said, doesn't this poppy red polish by Deborah Lippmann look like it was plucked from a flourishing floral garden? The warmness of this red shade is the summer version of the oxblood manicure you wore all winter long.

To buy: $20; nordstrom.com.

Sally Hansen Good.Kind.Pure. Nail Color in Sun-tastic

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Pastels are typically associated with spring, but guess what? They're here to stay this summer. Victoria Caruso, director of marketing at Color Camp in Los Angeles says that a yellow manicure give you that little bit of sunshine everyone needs right now. Better yet, you can pair pastel yellow with a neon shade — another major summer nail trend. "When paired together, neon and pastel create a fun yet edgy feel that people are looking for, especially during this unknown time," she says.

To buy: $9; walgreens.com.

Christian Louboutin The Pops Nail Colour in Baraboum

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A brilliant sky blue is another nature-inspired color that's trending. This Christian Louboutin bottle looks cool in your nail polish collection and your actual nails.

To buy: $50; nordstrom.com.

Essie Nail Polish in Souq Up the Sun

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This creamy orange polish is summer in a bottle. While you don't need a UV lamp for essie's polish to dry, it gives you a high-shine, long-wear finish like a traditional gel manicure.

To buy: $9; ulta.com.

Zoya Nail Lacquer in Dacey

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Ditch that same blush shade you've been painting your nails with since high school for hot pink. While Zoya's formula is free of 10 toxic chemicals commonly associated with nail polish, it doesn't hold back on color payoff.

To buy: $10; ulta.com.

OPI Mexico City Infinite Shine Collection in Verde Nice to Meet You

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Manifest spending a summer Friday at the beach by painting your nails turquoise blue. If you're using this time away from professional gel manicures to get your nails back into shape, OPI's Infinite Shine formula has the same salon-quality gel finish, but can be gently removed without soaking your nails in acetone.

To buy: $13; ulta.com.

Base Coat Nail Polish in Capricorn

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A rich stone brown manicure can be incredibly chic. The earth tone looks amazing on everyone and is a nice change of pace from other subtle shades like baby pink or nude.

To buy: $18; nordstrom.com.

SinfulColors Professional Nail Polish in Snow Me White

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Like clockwork, the first gorgeous summer day makes you want to break out the white nail polish. This crisp SinfulColors shade gives you that full-on opaque finish. Oh, and it's only $2! Seems almost too good to be true — almost.

To buy: $2; target.com.

JINsoon Nail Polish in Winky

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Choi saw bright shades of pink all over fashion week and says that flashy, playful corals are going to be majorly trending well into summer. This color from her eponymous nail polish line is the perfect mix of red, pink, and coral.

To buy: $18; jinsoon.com.