These Simple Nail Art Looks Are Perfect Year-Round

starry nails


We don't know about you, but when our nails are pretty and painted we just feel more put together. Fortunately for us, it doesn't require being a pro nail artist to get the job done. In fact, simple nail art ideas are all the rage right now, popping up left and right on Instagram and real life. From minimalist negative space nail looks to modern French manicures, ahead you'll find 25 of our favorite simple nail art looks worth giving a try.

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Dots and Dashes

Simple Nail Art Designs Dots Dashes


This simple abstract moment is great for anyone who favors a perfectly imperfect design. With a few dots and lines layered over a nude base, you have yourself a snap-worthy masterpiece.

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Mini Half Moons

Simple Nail Art Designs Half Moons


Believe it or not, you can create a pretty impactful manicure without even painting your entire nail. Just look at this mini half-moon design that features a triple-lined arc and lots of negative space.

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Pink Tonal Fade

Simple Nail Art Designs Pink Tonal Fade


Rainbow manicure, mismatched nails, tonal fade—whatever you call this multi-colored manicure trend, this demure pink range slays it like no other. It's the ultimate neutral manicure that still offers a layer of intrigue thanks to varying hues. Best of all, it's incredibly easy to recreate given it only requires choosing five pink polishes and painting them on.

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Dainty White Stripes

Simple Nail Art Designs White Stripes


This simple manicure is eye-catching thanks to the tiniest white strip across the top of each nail. The trick to creating a nail look like this is to use a nail-striping brush, like China Glaze Stripe Rite Best in Snow ($6). The ultra-slim brush makes nailing a perfectly straight line easier than ever.

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Starry Cuticles

Simple Nail Art Designs Starry Cuticles


Feeling starry-eyed? This glitzy star manicure is surprisingly simple to create. All you need are 50 gold star sequins (five for each nail) and your favorite topcoat. Use the topcoat to adhere the sequins to the nail, then apply a coat or two over top to seal them in place.

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Blue-Dipped Tips

Simple Nail Art Designs Blue Tips


This simple blue manicure is giving us all the retro vibes. The rounded shape adds even more allure to the two-tone nail look. Plus, it's a great option for brides looking to get creative with their "something blue."

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Kira Kira

Simple Nail Art Designs Kira Kira


Who needs shimmering sunlight to create a glistening nail look? Not us. With this creative design, you'll be able to mimic the appearance of a glittering manicure without worrying about showing off your nails in the right light.

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Dot Fade

Simple Nail Art Designs Dot Fade


This small-to-large dot manicure is done in varying pastel shades, in a way that makes it look almost holographic. The light, cool shades make for an alluring match when combined with a nude base, but just imagine the disco vibes if it were done with black.

If you don't have a proper nail blotting tool at home, just open up a bobby pin and use one of its rounded tips to create the same effect.

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Tiny Polka Dots

Simple Nail Art Designs Tiny Polka Dots


All you need is your favorite hot pink polish and white nail polish pen to bring this look to life. Need a reco? Many nail lovers swoon over the Sally Hansen I Heart Nail Art Pen in white.

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Forest Diagonals

Simple Nail Art Designs Forest Green Diagonals


We love a minimalist dipped mani. Instead of a fully-dipped tip, take it diagonally with this geometric nail look. In addition to crisp, eye-catching lines, you'll notice that this simple mani features a curving glitter stripe that adds a bit of a magic touch.

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Navy Chevron Tips

Simple Nail Art Designs Navy Chevron Tips


Navy and nude, oh how we're obsessed with you. This shiny manicure is made totally Insta-worthy with its elongated shape and simple points.

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Rainbow Tips

Simple Nail Art Designs Rainbow Tips


Another way to rock the mismatch mani is by featuring the whole rainbow. While this look is made with negative space, it could be done in combination with any polish—all of which are sure to turn heads.

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Seeing Red

Simple Nail Designs Red


For a nail look that's impactful as it is simple to create, check out this red manicure. It features full nail color as well as negative space. What's not to love?

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Negative Space Nudes

Simple Nail Art Designs Nude Negative Space


These simple beauties are perfect for everyday, weddings, or any occasion you'd like. They're simple, demure, and totally Pinterest-worthy.

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Black and Glitter

Simple Nail Art Designs Black and Gold


Two jet-black nails and one glittery accent nail make for a simple mani that looks totally put together despite featuring two totally bare nails. We're here for it.

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Rose Quartz

Simple Nail Art Designs Rose Quartz


Embrace all the crystal vibes with these rose quartz-inspired nails. While creating the nail look may not be the most simple process, the end look is clean, making it totally worth it.

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Confetti Cuties

Simple Nail Art Designs Confetti


A simple pinkish-nude base flecked with glitter turns out to be a simple nail look that gives off all the party vibes. And, if you use holographic glitter, it'll be especially party-ready.

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Confetti Outlines

Simple Nail Art Designs Confetti Border


Love a glittery nail look but can't handle full nails decked out in the shimmering confetti? These half-outlined nails offer a chic way to rock the light-reflecting look.

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Pastel Swoops

Simple Nail Art Designs Pastel Swoops


These '80s-inspired pastel nails are giving us life. They give us old-school aerobics outfit vibes that simply can't be ignored.

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Dual Nudes

Simple Nail Art Designs Neutral


Who knew two neutral colors could make such a big impact with nothing but a simple diagonal application? This retro-inspired nail art design has been popping up left and right on the 'gram—and for good reason. It can be worn in any color combo and is suitable for all occasions.

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Rhinestone Flowers

Simple Nail Art Designs Rhinestone Flower


While this nail design will definitely take longer to bring to life, the end look is simple and refined. Using a bare nail as the base, the eye-catching allure of the nail design centers around the multi-colored gems used to create the blooms.

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Adorably Abstract

Simple Nail Art Designs Abstract


Another negative space stunner, this nail look is all about minimalist swipes of color for a major impact. After all, have you ever seen such a fun mani? We think not.

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Rose Gold Accent

Simple Nail Art Designs Rose Gold


We love rose gold nail accents nearly as much as we love negative space, so it's no wonder we fell head over heels as soon as we saw this simple manicure. All it takes is a neutral base coat, a single metallic rose gold stripe down the center of each nail, and clear top coat. Talk about simple.

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Gemstone Sparkle

Another negative space beauty. To create the look, paint on a clear base coat or light nude polish and stick gemstones on each nail while they're still wet. Finish with a matte top coat, making sure not to paint over the gems (you don't want to dim their sparkle).

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Gold Star

Simple Nail Art Designs Gold Star


In kindergarten we got gold stars for good behavior; in adulthood, we get them for stellar simple nail looks. Case in point: This gold star negative space nail design. With a clear base and one or two gold confetti stars per nail, this manicure manages to be simple yet glam.

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