Fall Nail Trends

Fall is finally here! Now it’s time to embrace this season's newest trends. Her Campus recently paired up with a certified nail technician, freshman Serena Smith, to catch up on all the latest fall nail trends and tips. Here’s what she has to say:


Before we get into the good stuff, it is important to review some basic tips to keep your hands fresh for the upcoming season. Serena recommends always using a cuticle oil to keep both your nails and hands looking healthy and moisturized in the colder weather. Don’t worry, you don’t have to go out and search for a specific cuticle oil; anything from lip balm to coconut oil works.

“Anything that has moisture,” Smith recommended.

Secondly, Serena warned against Kylie Jenner Nails. The celeb’s long, cat-like stiletto nails may look totally glam, but it's most definitely not practical for us college girls.

“Keeping nails short, preferably round or square, is the most convenient for typing, writing and any everyday task,” says the young nail expert. The key is definitely functionality.

Her last important tip was to always use a base coat when preparing to apply any polish—it keeps your natural nails from yellowing. She recommended the base coat by Seche Vite, which you can find at beauty stores such as Ulta and Sally’s.

Fall Colors and Designs

Fall is all about rich, earthy tones with the most popular shades being mauves, deep plums, the go-to-nude, maroons, olive green and greys. The darker the shade the better! Additionally, textured nails are definitely in. If you haven’t tried a matte coat you have to ASAP! Revlon sells a matte top coat that can be applied to ANY nail color by any brand. I’ve used it myself and I must say I do love it! You can find it at Walmart, Target or any drugstore.

Another nail trend is the holographic nail effect. They look ridiculously out of this world and super chic. Check out these holographic swatches from Nail Addict (the nail studio Serena worked at back at home). Serena believes they will most definitely be a thing this upcoming season. Make sure to also check out OPI’s newest fall collection Washington DC. It includes some of the best shades for the season.

Choosing the Best Brands

The color of a polish is what first attracts us, but it is also important to pay attention to the brand. It is worthwhile to spend the extra dollar or two for better quality. Serena’s faves include OPI®, Sally Hansen®, and Gelish®.

Price is also a factor when choosing your brand. Back at home, I pampered myself with a gel manicure every two weeks, but since coming to college I’ve had to save money and cut my manicure out of the budget. I’ve been doing my own gel manicures with the two-step Miracle Gel from Sally Hansen®. It lasts for over a week without chipping and is easy to use. The product comes in a wide range of colors and only costs $14 for the whole thing (seven dollars for the gel polish coat and seven for the polish color.) I definitely recommend it!

Although priced at a steal, Serena recommends staying away from brands such as LA Colors® which have a poor shelf life and leave your manicure peeling in less than a week.

Now it’s time for you to go out and find your own fall faves!  Be sure to keep in mind all of Serena’s tips while searching and most importantly always be sure to take care of your nails.  For more tips and tricks, take a look at Serena’s Instagram: Collegegirlsnail.  You may even be able to get a professional manicure right in your dorm!