Trend Report

Perfectly Polished

From glow-in-the-dark polish to three-dimensional charms, it seems like your weekly manicure has become a grown-up art project, an exercise in creativity with endless options for nail shape, color, texture and beyond. With so many new developments in technology and sources for design inspiration online, it抯 handy to have a go-to source to sift through the noise for the greatest finds. Enter Nail It! Magazine, the recently launched publication serving up expert advice on the latest nail news, trends, tips and tricks. We talked to Karie Frost, Beauty Director for Nail It!, about some fun nail trends to try this summer and a few styles to look out for this fall.

What color do you have on your nails right now?
Unfortunately, what I'm wearing I can't talk about梚t's embargoed. Under lock and key. Suffice it to say, it's a new gel by a big name set to debut later this year. But that's all I can divulge. I'm actually rocking it in color blocks: a diagonal of mint green and a diagonal of burgundy. Sounds like a strange color-combo, but it's very fresh and eye-catching.

Tell us a little bit about Nail It! Magazine.
Nail It! is a consumer beauty magazine that views nails through a 360-degree lens. We look at how nails fit into your health, your fashion, your lifestyle. We抮e about education, trend forecasting and product discovery梐nd we can抰 forget makeup, hair, skin and fashion, so that抯 all included as well! We aim to appeal to both DIY polishers and salon devotees, as well as to nail art obsessives and polish classicists. It truly is the first of it抯 kind.

How often do you paint your own nails?
I manage Nail It! Magazine抯 Instagram account, so I抦 constantly taking pictures of my manicure. I always need to show our followers something new and fresh. That being said, I paint my nails one to two times a week梥ometimes more if I find the time or feel a little antsy.

Who are some nail bloggers to follow for nail art inspiration?
I have a few Instagram obsessions: Nail Swag, Spifster, The Illustrated Nail, ThisIsVenice, Fleury Rose, Britney Tokyo, Madeline Poole, Naomi Yasuda, Christina Rinaldi, Mei Kawajiri卼he list goes on. You can really go down a rabbit hole of amazing artistry between these ladies. I抦 basically drawn to either super-intricate detailing or unusual shade combinations in simple color blocks. These women all deliver the goods.

Which celebrity is always on point with her nail art?
Hands down, Katy Perry. If we抮e talking nail art, when she does indulge, she chooses designs that echo her fashion point of view. I抣l always love the Joan of Arc nails manicurist Pattie Yankee created for Katy for the 2013 Met Gala; they抮e like Renaissance art.

What are some hot nail trends for summer?
When it comes to nail art, black-and-white designs are tops, despite the fact that they buck the trend of typically bright, summertime colors. The trend actually borrows from the spring/summer 2013 runways, such as Marc Jacobs and Balmain. The look almost has a mod feel, and I think it works on nails because the two non-colors crisply contrast for intense visual impact梕ven if you抮e simply doing a black half-moon on an opaque white nail. It抯 simple, chic and can read elegant or trendy梩he choice is yours.

Color-blocking is another hot summer nail art trend. Pairing mega-brights, like lemon and fiery coral, with grounding hues, like beige, black or deep navy, in simple geometric patterns is a fun way to dress up nails. Think: four-square checkers, three diagonal sections or repeating curved lines. Color-blocking is so simple in its makeup, yet the visual payoff is incredible.

As for polish hues, I抦 all over the newest vivid pastels being offered, especially peaches; they all have this underlying brightness that really hasn抰 been seen for this hue when it comes to nail lacquer. Illamasqua Nail Varnish in Purity has a cool dusty quality to it, but it抯 still unbelievably bold. Floss Gloss in Pony is a bit brighter and looks amazing with a tan. And China Glaze Sun of a Peach is a truly neon pastel; it抯 definitely for women who take risks with their manicure colors. There抯 something about vivid pastel peach that feels both sweet and sexy.

Finally, texture is big梐nd for summer, blending texture with neons is where it抯 at. We created a black 揷oncrete nail with slashes of gradient neon running through it. The gravelly texture plus streaks of color is definitely an eye-catching梱et totally unique梔esign for summer.

Other trends to look out for: tribal patterns, negative space and glitter gradients.

What are some simple rules to keep in mind when DIYing nail art at home? Any tricks of the trade?
The trick I抳e learned is that you must anchor your wrist, no matter if you抮e painting more intricate designs or simply polishing your nail in three swipes. The best way to anchor it is to rest your arm, from the elbow to your wrist, against the table you抮e using; this gives you more control. Sounds like a no-brainer, I know, but not everyone does it. Once you do, you抣l see the difference.

Also, practice makes perfect. Your hand becomes steadier with time and repetition; your lines become straighter; your concept of space should become stronger.

And if you抮e flummoxed over what colors to pair together on a nail, just look to fashion. Designers are known for marrying nervy shades with one another, and using their wares as a visual cue can be a great help.

Why has nail art become so popular? How has it changed the industry?
Not until the last few years did nail art really explode with the masses. I trace the obsession back to Tumblr抯 beginnings: As soon as Tumblogs devoted to intensive nail art hit the scene, I抎 hear about beauty obsessives (who aren抰 in the nail industry) flocking to them on a daily basis. Think about it: Gifted nail technicians now had images of their nail art collected into one flowing stream that everyone梟o matter their proximity梙as access to: their handiwork wasn抰 just relegated to their salon and their town; in fact, it was being shared and lauded. Some of the more enterprising nail obsessives who viewed these Tumblogs thought: 揗aybe I can try that at home. Over time, blogs devoted to step-by-step nail art hit, then Pinterest boards filled with nail art images to take to salons or try at home, and it has snowballed from there. I think this technology really helped first foster and then spur along the madness. (And I love it!)

What are a few of your new favorite nail innovations?
Even though it抯 not entirely new anymore, I抎 have to say that gel polish has really transformed the way we wear manicures and pedicures. Gel polishes just have this high-shine finish that regular polish can抰 touch. And the longevity梬ell, who doesn抰 want their manicure to last them two weeks? Especially when you抮e on vacation

I抦 also digging the new glow-in-the-dark polishes. Ciat Corrupted Neon Manicure packages together everything I love: mega-bright color, neon glitter and a glows-in-black-light clear top coat. Yes, you need a black light to power-up the glow, but you can always pop into a club or two this summer!

I also spotted an innovation that I don抰 have all the details on yet, but it seems pretty promising. Let抯 just say: It抯 a polish that creates raised stripes for a matte and shine pattern. Instant nail art is always a hit, so I抦 really excited to try this one out!

Any fall trend predictions?
Glitter gradation will still remain a strong trend, but you抣l start seeing it done with inky hues like ebony, navy and hunter green. A cool take would be stippling your loose glitter from the middle of your nail outward to create a galaxy-like effect.

If we抮e to take a cue from the runways, nail art will incorporate frisky plaid, herringbone and houndstooth patterns梑ut you抣l want to do a unique spin, like using plaid as a background to some hand painted roses or creating your houndstooth with gold leaf.

As far as color, the most exciting hues梩he ones I haven抰 seen before梐re creamy blue-purples. This color has a richness that you associate with fall, but also this beautiful radiance that抯 very uplifting. You know how brilliant cobalts took over for the past few seasons? These are this season抯 answer. Butter London Giddy Kipper is the brightest and has just a touch of iridescence. SpaRitual Midnight Stroll and Zoya Sailor are both full-coverage, opaque creams that are true standouts.

Finally, expect some truly innovative glitter formulations to bow this fall. I抳e seen everything from multi-shape-and-color holographic glitter suspended together in sheer jelly bases to full-coverage duo-chrome polish (think: liquid metal-like) that boast holographic glitter in a complementary hue (like, a gold base with purple glitter). Just when you think every glitter polish has been made, a new one comes out and leaves you breathless. Now, all we need is a glitter polish remover匢抦 sure if the demand is there, innovation will prevail!

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