Kerry Washington Is Embracing Playful Nail Art This Summer

Plus, details on her go-to manicure color.

Kerry Washington

Kerry Washington

Our series The One Thing is a Sparknotes version of the products, rituals, and moments your favorite celebrities and influencers swear by—their go-tos, must-haves, and can’t-live-withouts. So go ahead—take a brief, intimate peek into the lives of your favorites through the things (and people, and moments) they hold dear.

It goes without saying that we're forever fans of Kerry Washington. The multi-hyphenate has been a fave since long before she was the go-to problem solver on Scandal and the complex mother and artist in Little Fires Everywhere. Safe to say we're tuning in if she's the star (or the director... or producer).

On the beauty front, she's never shied away from a bold look. Her red carpet beauty has landed on our "Best Of" lists plenty of times, from bright shadows and lipsticks to blunt bangs and, of course, colorful manicures. She pretty much a pro at catching a good nail selfie of her mani courtesy of nail artist Kim Truong.

So, it was only natural that the star became an OPI brand ambassador. After teaming up with the company in 2016 for the aptly-named Washington D.C. Collection, the collaboration became a longtime partnership. “I truly LOVE working with Suzi, OPI’s Co-Founder. She is a fierce businesswoman, a genius collaborator, and a remarkable friend,” says Washington. “I had been a longtime fan of OPI, and my mother always instilled the importance of practicing good nail care, so when Suzi reached out to me about partnering, it came about very organically.”

While we’re sure the multi-talented star has a hectic schedule, she still makes time for all forms of self-care, including regular manicures and nail care in between. We reached out for all the details, from her favorite affordable sunscreen to the one thing she always keeps in her purse.

Naturally, her favorite manicure color came up as well. Read on for Kerry Washington's beauty must-haves.

The One Nail Color She Always Picks

"We The Female ($7) from the Washington D.C. Collection I did with OPI. It’s this beautiful dark red shade. It has been my go-to red for years, and I’m so proud that it has become a brand favorite. This summer, I’m really loving Cozu-Melted in the Sun ($7)."

OPI, Nail Lacquer
OPI Nail Lacquer in We The Female $7.00

The One Thing She Does To Keep Her Nails in Shape

"Moisturizing! I love OPI’s Pro Spa Nail & Cuticle Oil ($10) for my nails. As for my hands, I have eczema, and keeping them moisturized is really important to me. I like to use Neutrogena’s Hydro Boost Hand Gel Cream with Hyaluronic Acid ($7), which keeps them moisturized without feeling heavy or sticky."

OPI, Cuticle Oil
OPI Pro Spa Nail & Cuticle Oil $10.00

The One Thing She Does For Self Care

"Therapy and Exercise. Maintaining my mental and physical health are equally important to me—I want to feel good inside AND out."

The One Beauty Product She Has To Have in the Summer

"Sunscreen—I use Daily Defense Face Serum Sunscreen SPF 60+ ($13)."

Ulta, Sunscreen
Neutrogena Invisible Daily Defense Face Serum SPF 60+ $13.00

The One Thing That Preps Her For Big Events

"Pray and meditate."

The One Thing That's Always In Her Purse

"These days, it’s EMU Hand Sanitizer ($20)."

The One Beauty Trend She Wants To Try

"I definitely like to be more playful with my nails in the summertime. Brighter colors! Mismatched patterns and shapes! Childlike themes!"

The One Thing She Does Before Bed

"Wash my face. Take my vitamins. And review my schedule for the next day."

The One Thing She Does Every Morning

"Gratitude prayer. Hugs with family. One liter of water."

The One Product That Keeps Her Hair Healthy

"Leave-in conditioner. I’m always trying new ones."

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