2015 was all about nail art, half moons and Kim Kardashian inspired nails but what’s next in nail trends for 2016? We chatted with Monika from The Nail Lab about metallics, tie dye and those at home gel nail systems that keep popping up. Oh and if you struggle to keep your DIY manis from chipping, read on – she shared her top tips with us.

Are We Over the Kardashians?

Caitlyn Jenner may have stolen all the headlines in the family this year but when it comes to beauty, Kim still reigns says Monika: “the ‘Kim Kardashian’ was certainly one of our most requested acrylic nail looks this year! However I don’t think that clients necessarily specifically follow the Kardashians for their nails. Clients are influenced by so many different sources – celebrities, red carpet events and fashion events- recent happenings such as the 2015 Emmys and NY Fashion Week Spring Shows were major influencers. The internet gives us a backstage pass at these which makes endless nailspiration always accessible!”.

What Nail Trends Will We See in 2016?

Soft Metallics

As you may have read from our previous chat with Monika, nail trends match fashion trends. Where 2015 was all about neon and cut out patterns. 2016 will see a shift in colour to metallics and we are not just talking about silvers: “It will be all about pale and rose golds integrated into a classic mani. Think neutral base with gold french tips; white with metallic feathering; beige with multiple rose gold feature nails and matte white with a gold ombre”.

 Rose Gold Nails

Next Level Negative Space

“This year we saw negative space (think cut out shapes and patterns) really become a highlight trend. 2016 will see negative space taken to a whole new level. Think blank canvas nails with geometric lines and bare nails with a bright French tip. It will almost be like the art without the base colour”, says Monika.

Matte over Nude

TNL Matte

We saw matte finishes come back in cars and makeup – this wasn’t any different in nail art. The trend is set to continue only with slight shifts according to Monika: “a matte finish over black was huge in 2015; next year we will see it over white, nudes and earthy tones”.


TNL Marbling

From a nail art perspective; a marbled finish will be where it’s at. From Calcutta to a Tie Dye finish; this will be THE look of 2015.


Square oval

In terms of shape and nail extensions; the Oval/Almond is set to be the nail shape of 2016.

On DIY Gel Nail and Mani and Pedi Kits

The appeal of gel nails is strong when you have a 4 week holiday ahead and need the colour to stay and the launch of DIY gel nail kits mean that you can now save a few dollars doing it yourself. But there’s a time for DIY and certain things you should leave to a pro.

“We are all for a bit of DIY; and even encourage our clients to follow certain steps for in between professional mani/pedi maintenance but follow these few simple guidelines” :

– Want gel nails? Get them done by the pros. Not only does your technician have specific training about these systems; they will also ensure appropriate application AND removal to lessen damage to your nail.

– Keep cuticle nipping and clipping to your nail technician. Invest in an exfoliating cuticle softener to tame unruly cuticles in between professional pedis.

– Don’t be fooled by miracle DIY ‘callous removal systems’. Callous removal should be left to your podiatrist. Keep your soles smooth by dry buffing them with a Pedi Paddle and Grit Strip, weekly.

– Clipping your toenails? Always do so straight across and soften the edges with a 180 Grit File to help prevent ingrown toenails in between pedicures.

Nail FAQs

How do I avoid chipping my nails, what kind of nail polish remover should I get, what shades will look good on my skin tone?

Those are my top 3 frequently asked questions related to nail care and Monika was generous with her expertise.

What to Do To Avoid Chipping

“The three step rule! Always use a base coat, colour and top coat. If a ‘one step system’ sounds too good to be true; it probably is (anyone remember 2in1 shampoo and conditioner..?? Enough said!)”.

Invest in a good cuticle product: “Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate!! Using your cuticle oil at least one daily not only keeps your cuticles supple; but also helps to keep your nails from chipping”.


The hydrate Cuticle Oil RRP; $15.00

Acetone or Non-Acetone? What’s the Difference Anyway

Nail polish remover – acetone or non-acetone? What’s the most natural way to care for them?

“Both! You need a lacquer removal that contains some acetone but also has nourishing components to help prevent the drying out of the nail beds, cuticles and your fingers. If your nail salon is using 100% acetone – RUN! We swear by OPI Expert Touch Remover which boasts only 15 percent acetone for super effective lacquer and gel polish removal; but also contains ingredients such as Aloe Vera Leaf Extract and Grape Seed Oil which leave cuticles soft and smooth.”

3 Universally Flattering Shades?

Classic Red – with so many different versions of red on the colour spectrum; a classic blue red tone will suit most skin types – from pale to dark.

Nude – this one can be tough as there are so many nudes on offer! Opt for a whiter base for pale and pink skin tones, a pink base for creamier skin tones and a beige base for olive skin tones.

Sheer Pink – for that freshly buffed glossy finish; you can’t beat a sheer pink. Appealing to young to old; from your fashion forward to your most conservative. Intensify the colour by adding more coats. Every woman’s make up cupboard essential.


Universally flattering shade of red: The Nail Lab Red Polis in Christian RRP; $15.00


See more beauty articles from Iona Yeung here or follow her blog on Twitter or on Instagram @iona.y

Since you are already here, why not keep up-to-date with all the latest Stylehunter.com news?

twitter pinterest insta facebook email goo link tumblr

To get more fashion, beauty and lifestyle news LIKE stylehunter.com on Facebook: