6 Fall Nail Trends Straight from the Runway

Nails are as much of an accessory as stunning shoes and a gorgeous bag. Here’s a recap of the season’s must-have trends, plus an easy DIY to steal the look all on your own.

Seen At: Prabal Gurung

Photo Credit: Prabal Gurung for Sally Hansen (Runway)


Inspired by the Ukraine’s Asgarda tribe who are all female and martial arts trained, Gurung created feminine yet structured jackets, pants and dresses with a clear military vibe—and wanted the nails in almost to the T shades (think deep olive, navy and gold) to follow suit.
Nail It: Luckily, the designer teamed up with Sally Hansen to bring the exact shades used backstage in a bottle. File nails into an oval shape, then depending on your outfit of choice, reach for a complementary shade (like the army green or midnight blue) such as two coats of either Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Loden Green or Night Watch; or opt for a gilded touch to highlight the glittery accents with two coats of Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Coat of Arms (available at drugstores for $7.99). If you want, add a top coat for extra shine.
Pair It: Prabal Gurung, Enchanted Forest Dress; $225 Rental, $1695 Retail


Seen At: Diane von Furstenberg

Photo Credit: Essie (Runway)


The queen of flattering the female body with drape-y silhouettes wanted to create a collection that had a little David Bowie and a touch of animal kingdom. The result: a mix of prints, bright hues and a wide array of textures—from silk to snakeskin and suede—and simple yet chic nails to complement—not compete—with them.
Nail It: After grooming nails to a clean shape, layer two coats top coat then add a touch of Essie Apricot Cuticle Oil and massage into nails. And let your toes be the standout with a shiny pink polish. Let your base coat completely dry, then apply one coat of an iridescent, vivid pick (Essie Plumberry pictured), and finish with a second coat of a blue-based mauve-y pink, like Essie Miami Vice, followed by a thin layer of top coat.
Pair It: Diane von Furstenberg, Ernestina Lace Dress; $85 Rental, $465 Retail


Seen At: Cushnie Et Ochs
Photo Credit: Essie (Runway)

Co-designers Carly Cushnie and Michelle Ochs, the duo behind cult favorite line Cushnie et Ochs are known for their cut-out-centric and curve flattering styles and this season proved that again but by veering from their go-to shapes with looser forms and prints that still scream sexy as well as look-at-me nails.
Nail It: Apply a layer of base coat, followed by two coats of Essie Licorice (a dark black onyx) on each finger — minus your pinky, which should get two coats of Essie Good as Gold (a muted gilded hue). Add a thin layer of top coat every finger.
Pair It: Cushnie Et Ochs, Burning Passion Peplum Dress; $250 Rental, $1695 Retail


Seen At: Cynthia Rowley
Cynthia Rowley
Photo Credit: Deborah Lippmann (Runway)


Nail It:First, file nails into a short, round shape. Next, apply a layer of quick-drying base coat followed by two coats of Deborah Lippmann Dark Side Of The Moon, a sultry aubergine lacquer and finish with a coat of Deborah Lippmann Flat Top Matte-Maker Top Coat. (Pro tip: wait a full minute before the matte top coat so that the solvents completely evaporate which will help prevent streaks.)
Pair It: Cynthia Rowley, Button Me Up Dress; $50 Rental, $360 Retail


Seen At: Narciso Rodriguez
Photo Credit: Mark Schafer (Runway)


The modern and not-much-color designer went out of his comfort zone with splashes of color throughout his fall collection, especially orange, deep teal, fuchsia and ruby red, using nails as his back-to-basics accent.

Nail It: Start by filing nails to where they just graze the tip of your fingers and have slightly rounded edges. Then apply two coats of Deborah Lippmann Naked (a true sheer beige),and finish with a coat of Deborah Lippmann Flat Top Matte-Maker Top Coat.
Pair It: Narciso Rodriguez, Bonded Berry Dress; $225 Rental, $1695 Retail


Seen At: Tracy Reese
Photo Credit: Tracy Reese for Sally Hansen (Runway)


Reese looked to the classic New York girl for this year’s runway—a far cry from the designer’s typical uber feminine forms. Think sexy 80s—neon cheetah prints, tapered-at-the-ankle pants as well as tons of sequins, leather and lace, all of which are edgy enough to balance out the range of vivid hues on nails (from red to teal, lychee and pink) with a golden metallic rim.

Nail It: Test drive one of the Tracy Reese for Sally Hansen collection shades including Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure New Wave Blue (a bright teal), Perfectly Poppy (a scarlet red), or Malbec (a true aubergine), available at drugstores for $7.99. Make nails into a long oval shape then paint each nail a sparkly gold (try Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Golden Rule); let them completely dry. Next, carefully apply one of the colored polishes in the middle of each nail, leaving the edge and base (along the cuticle) untouched.
Pair It: Tracy Reese, Colorbox Sheath; $50 Rental, $248 Retail.