Classic French manicures, cow print nails, tortoiseshell details, and minimalist nail art will always have a place in our hearts, but every once in a while, we want to veer away from neutral and towards bright and bold nail looks. You too?
From the looks of Instagram hashtags, we're not alone. #Neonnails has over 600,000 posts and that's not even the only tag related to the bright color palette—and trust us, we would know. As soon as we saw glowing nail colors blowing up, we immediately took to the 'gram to suss out the prettiest, most post-worthy neon nail looks social media has to offer. Naturally, we wanted to show you what we found. So, what're you waiting for? Keep scrolling for 25 ways to wear super-bright, neon nails.
Not ready to go full neon? This nude option focuses the bright color solely to one edge of each nail.
With a bright blue base and gradient lime, yellow, and orange accents, this geometric nail look is undeniably head-turning. We're here for it.
Neon Yellow Stars
It's no secret that we're obsessed with star-print nail looks. Pair the print with an ultra-bright hue and we're swooning.
Neon Rainbow French
Why rock plain whit tips when you can update a classic French manicure with a rainbow of color? We love this neon take that's both simple and eye-catching.
These bright, highlighter-yellow nails made us double-take. We love the sharp lines and crisp grey accents. After all, grey nails are in.
Another way to get in on the neon nail trend while also embracing grey is with this mismatch French mani. The grey base creates stark contrast against the bright tips in a way we can't stop staring at.
Tennis Ball Yellow
These tennis ball yellow nails remind us of summer and hours spent on the court. Best of all, they're easy to DIY. Simply start with a neon yellow base and finish with charcoal-grey squiggles.
This ultra-thin French manicure makes a major statement with slim swipes of highlighter yellow. To create the look, use French manicure stickers placed close to the edge of the tip of each nail.
Neon and negative space make a powerful combo we can't take our eyes off of. This particular example is super easy to recreate, too—just use striping tape.
Matte Neon Moment
Can't choose a single neon shade to showcase on your fingers? With this idea, you can paint one hand one color and the other another. The matte finish really takes the whole look up a notch.
These neon-sign nails feature intricate designs that require lots of patience to create but, once complete, are bound to earn you endless likes. Of course, creating them will likely require the help of a pro, so bookmark this page for inspo during your nail appointment.
Neon + Cocoa
These neon yellow and cocoa-brown nails are the contrast we need in our lives. Plus, they're simple to DIY—so long as your patient. Start with a bright yellow base, use a detail brush to swipe on a section of cocoa, and trace a black line between each. Finish with a matte topcoat.
These happy and sad (hi, @spaceykacey) almond-shaped nails make our hearts skip a beat. With neon yellow and hot pink accents and a semi-distressed finish, this mani is simply one of a kind.
These turquoise, yellow, and black leopard nails are guaranteed to garner likes online and complimnets in real life. They're not difficult to DIY, either. Start with a yellow base then use a thin brush or toothpick to create small turquoise circles and blobs (they don't have to be even) across your nails. Next, use a thin brush or toothpick to outline the edges (though, not entirely) of each blob in black. Finish with topcoat.
Electric blue pairs with purple, nude, and leopard for a divided nail design that's undeniably chic. To create each layer of color, use French manicure stickers as stencils.
"13 Going on 30"
These brightly striped, negative-space nails remind us of Jenna Rink's iconic mini dress from 13 Going on 30. In other words, we're in love.
Vivid Orange Tips
These tangerine orange and gold glitter nails are perfect for summer, but can be worn any time of year when you could use a brightening boost. We love the sliver of negative space between the two shades.
Neon Mismatch Nails
If you'd like to take a break from minimalist nail art, check out this busy neon manicure. With a different design on each nail, they're sure to turn heads.
This manicure proves that neon nails don't have to be complicated. Simply paint a couple of neon dots on each nail et voila.
Neon with a Chance of Clouds
How pretty are these cloudy ombré nails? The hot pink to electric blue fade would be perfect for a gender reveal mani (or any time you want a dreamy nail look).
Stars and Such
Pink, orange, purple, blue, black, and white combine for a high-contrast neon nail look that doesn't even require full coverage on each nail. If you're worried about DIY-ing stars, consider adhering star confetti to your tips in their place.
Who knew checker-print nails could look so fun?! We love how the turquoise and yellow checks are juxtaposed against a hot pink mani.
Sometimes rocking a double-tap-worthy neon nail look is as simple as finding the perfect bright shade to pair with your skin tone. We're obsessed with the contrast of the tennis ball-yellow against this model's perfectly-accessorized hands.
This highly-detailed mismatch mani features rainbows, hearts, smileys, and glitter for a nail look that looks equally fit for your kid sister as it does for Coachella. It's nostalgically '90s and we can't help but smile every time we scroll past it.