IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Rainbow nails are taking over Instagram, here's how to get them

It's all about the color!
Beautiful woman wearing birthday cap
Getty Images stock
/ Source: TODAY

Spring is a great time to try new beauty trends. With the weather still warming up, one easy way to start is with your nails.

So we asked Monica Stevens, a New York City-based cosmetologist, beauty influencer and Sally Beauty brand ambassador, about spring nail trends. According to Stevens, this season is all about having fun with color.

"I am always a nail fanatic, and I think it's cool how the rainbow nail trend is coming back," she told TODAY.

What is the rainbow nail trend?

Now you don't have to choose just one color at the nail salon; you can have them all! "It kind of popped up in the early 2000s for a little moment, and then went away, so it looks like that's coming back," Stevens said.

According to Glamour, the trend has been popping up all over Instagram in recent months. "Although the OG rainbow manicure seems to be just a different color on each nail, it’s since evolved and can take the form of a rainbow French manicure or rainbow nail art," the publication reported.

Helen Tran, a Detroit-based manicurist has also painted a lot of rainbow nails for her clients. "I have done every nail a different color to get the rainbow effect, and I've also done some clean nails with different colored stars on them."

How can you rock rainbow nails?

One of the best parts about this trend is that you can easily make it your own with different methods and styles, as mentioned above.

  • Classic rainbow nails: The most common way to pull off this look is to do every nail a different color. It creates a fun, playful look that is even a bit nostalgic. Plus, it's super easy to do yourself.
  • An ombre effect: Another method is to create an ombre effect with multiple polishes in the same color family. "You can take a range of shades of one color across all of the nails," Stevens shared. "I think that's really cool." Recently, Kylie Jenner took to Instagram to share a vibrant nail look that combined shades of pink and orange.
  • Pastels: Tran added that with Easter coming up, a lot of people are wanting pastels, especially lighter shades of purple, yellow and blue. This can be done in the classic way, with every nail a different color, or you can have multiple colors on each nail.
  • Rainbow art: You can also start with a clear or nude base, and add multicolored tips or designs to each nail.

Rainbow Nail Polish Picks

So what's the best way to achieve the rainbow look at home? Stevens advised looking for deals on different brands and colors when shopping for polish; that way you'll be able to get multiple shades at once.

Mini sets are another great way to try the trend. You can try out a hue to see how you like it without having to commit to a full bottle. OPI, in particular, has great sets, and both Tran and Stevens agreed that the brand is a favorite.

Here are some of our favorite nail polish sets:

OPI Spring 2019 Tokyo Collection Mini Nail Lacquer Set, $16, Amazon

This set includes shades of purple and pink that would make for a great ombre nail. Stevens said that purple polish is one of her go-to colors. "I love purples, and I often go between nude and purple," she explained.

Nicole Miller Mini Nail Polish Set, $20, Amazon

This Nicole Miller set has great spring colors for a rainbow look, including pinks, purples and blues.

Shany Cosmopolitan Nail Polish Set, $25 (usually $30), Amazon

This package of nail polishes is perfect for a classic rainbow look. It has basically every color in a vibrant, happy shade.

KleanColor Neon Colors Full Collection, $15, Walmart

Here is another pack of neon-colored polishes. The set includes 12 colors for a very affordable price.

China Glaze Chic Physique Micro Mini Nail Kit, $15, Ulta

This mini set of China Glaze polishes is the perfect way to try out the trend, because it has almost every color of the rainbow. Plus, the petite bottles are great for travel.

ASP Color Quick Dip Kit, $22, Sally Beauty

If you want to try the new dip method, this set includes three colors perfect for an ombre. Tran recommended the dip method for those who want to strengthen their nails. "With dip, there are no extra chemicals that will damage your nails," she said. "Anyone who wants to grow out their nails without the breaking and chipping, dip is the way to go."

For more nail products, check out:

To discover more deals, shopping tips and budget-friendly product recommendations, download the new TODAY app and subscribe to our Stuff We Love newsletter!