If you’re seeking new ways to manifest your future, you might want to consider changing up your nail polish colors. According to color and glamour magic, each shade has a different spiritual meaning, and can therefore help you visualize and manifest your future from your fingertips.
How do I know? Well, I asked the experts, for one, but have also experienced it firsthand. Two years ago I stopped connecting to the pale pink color I’d worn on my nails for years, and felt that my mani—and life—needed an energetic overhaul. Seeking answers, I googled “manifestation manicures,” wondering if certain nail polish colors could, in theory, help me manifest, or “visualize,” the future I wanted—similar to a mood board and the manifestation mani Dua Lipa wore back in 2020.
My initial findings on dated “color magic” web forums confirmed my suspicion that colors were known for their unique meanings. Enthused, I chose bright yellow, which is known for optimism and joy, adding a smiley face to each ring finger. And the rest is history. Since that manicure—and intentionally experimenting with colors—my luck has changed in the absolute best way: My schedule magically aligned with an opportunity to fly home to visit family; I finally beat my 5K running time after months of training; and I started interviewing for my dream job…that I ended up getting. Of course, it could be a coincidence, or it could be that seeing that jovial hue on my hands every day brightened my mood, making things seem better. Whatever the case, I’m officially a “manifestation manicure” convert, and I asked actual experts about the method so you can try it too.
What is manifestation?
Manifesting is the act of visualizing what you want to happen in real life, like getting into your dream graduate program, negotiating a higher salary, or meeting your soulmate (Megan Fox insists she manifested her fiancé). Imagining your ideal future as real makes your goals feel closer and more attainable, which, in theory, inspires you to take action to achieve them.
“Manifestation is the purpose of thinking thoughts that you want to attain in real life. If thinking can make you a believer, then anything can happen—including your dreams,” Lisa Stardust, astrologer and writer of The Love Deck, explains. That said, Stardust adds that many people don’t realize that the simple act of thinking something doesn’t necessarily make it come true. “For instance, you have to do the daily work needed. Many people meditate on their aspirations twice a day for 30 minutes, or they journal their goals daily to mark progress, while some create a vision board to ensure they are always looking at their hopes.”
How does color tie into manifestation?
“Every color holds a vibrational energy that can enhance our intentions,” Sarah Potter, a tarot reader and psychic medium, tells Glamour. “When we use color consciously, we can manifest our desires, shift how we feel, and change the energy. We all relate to color; we all know which colors we live and which ones we repel. This is reflective of the energy we are working with and what we need to feel balanced.”
There is also a color for every intention, she adds. Red, for example, is associated with confidence, while tangerine orange boosts creativity and inspiration. Thus, painting your nails specific colors helps you harness that energy, while seeing those colors every day can impact your outlook—regardless of whether or not you even believe in manifestation.
“Color in general plays such a huge part in our mood,” Juli Russell, DIY nail expert for Sally Beauty, tells Glamour. “So whatever gives you the confidence to slay is absolutely going to bring success, whether it be a bold red color to remind you that you’re a BA, or a smiley face nail design to give you encouragement, it all starts with a positive attitude.”
How do you manifest with nail polish?
Painting your nails or getting a manicure is a form of “glamour magic,” an offshoot of color magic that consists of wearing various makeup colors to call in specific energies.
“It’s a lovely self-care ritual where you must sit still and be present with your intentions as you paint, and wait for the polish to dry,” Potter says. “Our hands are powerful: We receive and expel energy through our hands, we gesture while we speak, [so you] express your intentions to the universe through the consciously chosen colors of your nails.”
For example, painting your nails yellow brings in a boost of optimism (as it did with me), and turquoise is balancing and healing. “We see our hands every day throughout the day, so let your nails be a magical reminder of your own power and your own magic,” Potter asserts. Just be sure to really envision your intentions as you paint.
What are the meanings of each color?
“Want a raise at work? Paint your nails red to give yourself the confidence to ask your boss for that promotion. Feeling disconnected from your intuition? Paint your nails lavender to trust yourself and your inner wisdom,” says Potter. If you have an upcoming job interview, Stardust advises wearing orange. “Orange is the color of creativity, which is why in many jobs in which people use their creative skill set, it’s important to wear that color on their interview,” she says.
If you prefer nail arts and designs, you can incorporate color magic into those manicures too: The base color is what matters most when it comes to manifestation. “As long as it incorporates the colors of the calls that you are trying to attain,” Stardust explains.
For example, if you want to manifest for the new year, Stardust suggests opting for nail art with gold or silver in it. “This be great for prosperity and confidence in the new year,” she says. “Designs with stars because they represent goals or something to strive for, and setting an intention for abundance or money with those key elements in mind after rinsing your hands with basil leaves will bring in wealth.”
Now get ready to screenshot: Here are the meanings and associations of (most) colors.
Coral: passion and optimism.
Red: creativity and power.
Pink: romance and love.
Purple: wisdom and independence.
Blue: freedom and imagination.
Black: protection and elegance.
White: open mindedness and purity.
Yellow: happiness and courage.
Green: growth and rebirth.
Orange: expression and joy.
Grey: balance and peace.
Gold: success and generosity.
Silver: grace and glamour.
Brown: security and reliability.
Ready to wear your own manifestation manicure? Shop the rainbow below, and start your journey today.
Danielle Sinay is the associate beauty editor at Glamour. Follow her on Instagram @daniellesinay.
Originally Appeared on Glamour