We're Really Into These 16 Nail Designs for Short Nails

Updated 01/23/18

Sure, long nails are nice, but a couple of weeks in and they can start to feel more high-maintenance than they're worth. (We've had the random jagged tips and scratched eyelids to prove it.) What's more is that short nails, even if they seem to be having less of a moment as of late, can still be super chic.

In fact, certain nail designs almost seem to lend themselves better to a shorter length than long. Don't believe us? We scoured the internet for 16 of the most eye-catching nail designs for short nails we've quite possibly ever seen—and succeeded. Keep reading for the must-see looks we'll be trimming our tips for ASAP.

@oliveandjune

Black and white are always chic. Plus, race-worthy checks only make the look better

@basecoatnailsalon

Light and feathery strokes featuring bold colors add a pop of interest to a stark white base.

@oliveandjune

The combination of light lavender and royal purple, plus a dusting of pint-size stars, looks flawless on short nails.

@oliveandjune

For a sleek and simple (but still stunning) nail design for short nails, simply start with a neutral or bare base and finish with a single shimmering stripe.

@basecoatnailsalon

Geometric triangles and pretty primaries complement short length with a modern twist.

@mpnails

Not for the faint of heart, but if you have a thing for leopard print and vibrant contrasting colors, this manicure is sure to look especially fierce on shorter nails.

@oliveandjune

If you can't actually be lying beneath the palms, having them on your tips might just be the next best thing, right?

@oliveandjune

Slightly Frozen–esque in inspiration, we're head over heels (or should we say fingers?) for this iced and edgy nail design for short nails.

@jinsoon

Truth: A broken heart adorning our nails is the only broken heart we want in our lives.

@oliveandjune

Not only do whimsical rainbows add a dose of graphic appeal to short nails, but they simultaneously channel the negative space trend.

@oliveandjune

Between the eye-catching graphic to the candy-apple base, this nail design couldn't be better for short nails.

@jinsoon

Another unexpected option? A glossy iteration of camo in moody shades of blue and striking pops of black and white.

@oliveandjune

Unconventional color pairings like cobalt blue, bubblegum pink, silver, and white keep short nails anything but boring.

@oliveandjune

When life gives you lemons… a lemon-inspired manicure is called for. We've seen similar designs, but we especially appreciate the pink and yellow color scheme.

@oliveandjune

For something demure and elegant, try a two-toned nail design in nude and baby blue.

@mpnails

Shimmering scales in turquoise and gold make for a bold and ethereal nail design that, though dramatic, won't overwhelm a shorter nail length.

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