This post is about beach vacation nails.
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If you’ve got a beach vacation trip coming up this summer break, you’ve probably already planned exactly what swimsuits, coverups, and sundresses you’re going to wear. But, you might not have thought about what nail polish you’re going to wear yet!
A beach vacation is the perfect opportunity to experiment with your manicure. Instead of wearing your normal nude nail polish or classic French manicure, now is the time to get creative with beach vacation nails - try an unexpected color, a new shape, or some super cute nail art!
We’ve rounded up 15 cute vacation nail ideas that are perfect for your next beach vacation. No matter your vibe or aesthetic, at least one of these vacation nail designs is sure to inspire you!
Here are 15 Cute Beach Vacation Nails for Warm Weather Inspiration.
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Beach Vacation Nails
1. Beach-Themed Nail Art
If you’re struggling to figure out what kind of nail art you want for your next beach vacation, why not match your nails to the beach itself?
The next time you visit your manicurist or nail tech, show them this image as nail inspo and ask them to recreate a gorgeous seascape across your manicure, incorporating the sand, surf, and even little seashell decals!
As an added bonus, even after your vacation has ended, it’ll just take one look at your nails to transport you back to a tropical paradise!
Another really cool vacation nail idea is to transform an accent nail into a mini seashell!
Ask your manicurist or nail tech to add little vertical ridges to one of your fingernails, creating a seashell effect.
If you paint this accent nail a neutral color, like white, pale pink, or nude, it’ll make the seashell look even more realistic.
This idea works best on shorter nails, which is perfect if you’re planning on just wearing your natural nails and not longer acrylics or press-ons.
3. Palm Tree
Another super cute beach vacation nail idea is to paint mini palm trees on your nails.
These work great as accent nails, or you can paint them on all of your fingers if you want to achieve an extra tropical vibe.
For a super on theme, realistic look, you can paint black palm trees silhouetted against an ombre background, so your nails look just like the beach at sunset!
Or, for a more graphic colorblocked look, paint the palm trees against a plain colored background.
4. Pastel Ombre
If super elaborate nail art isn’t your style, a pastel ombre manicure is a more subtle, less time consuming vacation nail idea that’s still super cute and trendy.
Pastel colors are perfectly on trend for the spring and summer months - they’re also cute for a graduation nail idea.
For a more lowkey look, pick two colors and ombre them across all of your nails. This idea would also work well with autumn colors to create fall ombre nails.
Or, if you want to go crazy, you can create a gorgeous pastel rainbow gradient with five or six different pastel colors!
5. Sunset Ombre
Another of our favorite vacation nail ideas is a sunset ombre design.
Like the pastel ombre, a sunset ombre is a simpler, less complicated nail idea for those who like to keep their manicures a little more lowkey.
But, the added bonus of a sunset ombre is that its vibrant oranges, pinks, and yellows match the look of a beach at sunset, making your manicure perfectly on theme!
For an added touch, combine this idea with the palm tree idea to create a manicure that looks just like a tropical paradise in the evening.
6. Neon French Manicure
Neon French manicures are another of our favorite beach vacation nail ideas.
In the fall and winter months, a neon nail color can be a little too loud and clash with the rest of your clothes.
But in the summertime, a pop of neon on your nails is the perfect complement to your swimsuits, jean shorts, and sundresses!
A Neon French manicure is the perfect balance between subtle classiness and a fun, summery pop of color!
7. Neon Chrome
If you love neon and aren’t afraid of a loud, eye-catching manicure, step up your nail game with some neon chrome nails.
Nude, white, and baby pink chrome nails have been super trendy on TikTok, Instagram, and Pinterest all year.
For a summery twist on this popular manicure, try recreating the look in a bright neon color, like coral, hot pink, or even highlighter yellow!
The shimmery, metallic effect will undoubtedly make your manicure stand out in a crowd.
8. Watermelon Nail Art
Watermelon is one of our favorite summer fruits. It’s the perfect refreshing snack to cool you down on a hot summer day.
If you’re a nail art enthusiast, try recreating this delicious summertime treat on your manicure!
Paint most of your nails solid pink and green, and then decorate an accent nail to look just like a tiny slice of juicy watermelon.
9. Daisy Nail Art
Daisy nail art is a classic vacation nail idea, allowing you to create a summery floral masterpiece on your manicure.
One of the best things about daisy nail art is that it’s completely customizable to your nail shape, length, and color preferences.
You can paint your nails any color and then decorate one accent nail with a few little daisies.
Or, you can go wild and paint all of your nails with tiny little daisy designs!
10. Multicolor Swirls
If you prefer your nail art a little more abstract, multicolor swirls are a super trendy beach vacation nail idea.
Like daisies, these abstract swirls are perfectly customizable to any nail length, shape, or color.
For the most basic colorblocked look, pick two summery colors and use them to paint waves and squiggles.
If you want to kick your manicure up a notch, you can also expand your swirly nail art to include three or four different colors!
11. Starfish Nail Art
If you love the ocean, show your enthusiasm by painting starfish onto your nails!
This beach vacation nail art idea is both trendy and on theme for a trip to the seaside.
We love the idea of painting pastel starfish against a nude or white background for a subtle, but still fun and colorful manicure.
Paint little starfish across all of your nails, or keep the design contained to one accent nail for a more lowkey look.
12. Ocean Blue
If you’re not into nail art and would prefer to just paint your nails one solid color, one of our favorite vacation nail colors is a soothing ocean blue.
Take inspiration from the many colors of the sea! There are a ton of options out there, from deep azure to vibrant cobalt to baby blue.
You can pick just one ocean blue color for all of your nails, or you can paint each nail a different shade of blue for a super easy gradient effect, no extra nail art tools required!
Painting your nails coral is another vacation nail color idea that allows you to draw inspiration from the ocean. This time, you’ll be emulating the vibrant color of coral reefs!
Coral is a summertime classic. It’s a little brighter than your everyday, run of the mill nude pink, but not quite as loud as a neon pink.
Plus, it looks equally good as a manicure color and a pedicure color!
14. Mint Green
Mint green is another great vacation nail color idea for those who prefer a solid colored manicure.
It’s a soothing pastel hue, so it’s not too flashy, but it also adds a cool, refreshing pop of color that perfectly complements any summer outfit.
Mint green nail polish looks great by itself, but it also pairs beautifully with blue, white, or pastel yellow nail art!
15. Tie Dye Nail Art
Finally, if you’re feeling nostalgic for your summer camp days, throw it back to your childhood arts and crafts era with tie dye nail art!
The possibilities are endless with this nail art style—use bold primary colors for a classic tie dye look or tone it down a little with a pastel gradient.
Really, you can pick any color combo you’d like to recreate this nail art style!
Matching your beach vacation manicure to your outfits can be a struggle. These vacation nail ideas are the perfect way to make sure that your nails are as colorful, summery, and vibrant as the rest of your look! Whether you love elaborate 3D nail art or a classic solid colored manicure, any one of these ideas is the perfect way to complete your vacation look.