11 Nail Art Designs That Look Great on Shorter Nails

These manicures were made for folks with short nails.

11 Nail Art Designs That Look Great on Shorter Nails

By Kara Nesvig and Kaleigh Fasanella, Allure

Long nails are the Marcia Brady of manicures — they get all the attention and can’t help but show off a little, displaying their intricate designs and shapes all over Instagram and Pinterest. When a new design trend hits, it’s almost always shown on long nails, which isn’t fair to short nails at all! Short nails are like Jan Brady, the middle sister who sometimes gets overlooked but definitely deserves the spotlight just like her big sis.

If you’re someone who will never succumb to the siren song of acrylic nails, a nail-biter, or if you’re cursed with weak nails that just won’t grow no matter how many avocados you eat, don’t fret. You and your adorable short nails can still hang. In fact, these manicures look amazing on all lengths, especially shorties like yours (and mine).




This simple split-color nail design looks ultra-sophisticated on shorter nails.




Proof that the French manicure can be anything-but-basic.




This lavender manicure with floral designs couldn't be easier to re-create at home — plus, the pretty ombré effect has a way of making nails look naturally longer.




This adorable smiley face manicure can be easily achieved with just three colors (nude, yellow, and black), along with a trusty dotting tool.




A little leopard print goes a long way — especially when it comes to spicing up short nails.




Green and gold nails are always gorgeous, but they look even better when they have a velvety finish like these do.




Because everyone fancies some good old fashioned Flower Power now and then.




Worried your short nails won't get noticed? Simply add some sparkle and you're good to go.




We're in love with this subtle starry style, which can work with any nail color your heart desires.




How rad is this magical rainbow manicure? Your digits will be the talk of the town when you step out with this look.


Fun fact: This festive red manicure isn't just perfect for the holiday season. Wear this geometric design any time of year and you're bound to get compliments.
11 Nail Art Designs That Look Great on Shorter Nails

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