A guaranteed way to ensure your look is perfectly polished (pun intended) is with a fresh manicure. But for the bold and fashion-forward, a simple swipe of a single color just won't cut it. Lacquer-loving individuals take their nails beyond the norm to make a statement, with eye-catching nail designs that showcase impossible intricacy and wondrous compositions to satisfy every whim.
From bright and geometric to forward-thinking takes on the classic French, the year offered up a creative catalog of new ways to wear nail polish that were as innovative as they were entrancing. Our favorite finds popped up on fashion week runways and in the streets, but all were immortalized on Instagram. Now we can cherish the coveted looks up close and refer to them as nail design inspiration all year long.
Keep reading to see the most mesmerizing nail designs to grace Instagram this year.
This epic chrome look puts all other metallic nail designs to shame.
This Los Angeles area studio delivers a serious dose of California cool. Here, bold stripes and color-blocking are on point.
You've seen this international nail artist's designs at major fashion shows from Area to Rodarte, not to mention every fashion magazine and many a celebrity. This rainbow design was seen on Julianne Hough.
Pastel perfection backstage at Area, a 2016 CFDA Vogue Fashion Fund finalist.
This abstract painting design puts a fun twist on nail art.
This nail stylist's mantra is "You don't need a man. You need a manicure."
How meta is this literal rendition of nail art?
Another fashion week darling, this manicurist's color-blocking nail design at Novis had us feeling anything but blue.
The most intriguing way to add a touch of gold.
Impressed by what you saw? Tell us which nail design was your favorite in the comments.