As the leaves start changing colors and the air gets crisper, it’s time to switch up your nail game for autumn. If you’re looking for inspiration on the cutest nail art and designs that scream ‘fall’, you’ve come to the right place.
If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer to your question: Go for rich shades like burgundy, forest green, navy and orange. Accent with metallic gold and copper foils. Add fall details like leaves, acorns, and pumpkins.
Chic Fall Nail Polish Colors
Rich, dark red nail polishes are a classic fall trend that never seems to go out of style. Vampy shades like oxblood, burgundy, and marsala complement autumnal colors perfectly. According to a survey by Popular Nail Art magazine, deep reds were the most popular nail color last fall, chosen by a whopping 58% of their readers.
Some of our favorite deep red nail polish picks this season include OPI’s Malaga Wine, Essie’s Bordeaux, and Butter London’s La Moss. These dark hues pair perfectly with cozy sweaters, boots, and scarves when the weather turns cool. Not to mention, the bold color makes your hands look instantly chic!
Earthy brown nails are always an elegant neutral choice for fall. From creamy nudes to rich chocolates, brown polish offers understated glamour. According to Nail Polish Statistics, the demand for brown nail enamels increased by 32% last autumn.
This year, we’re loving warm terra-cotta shades like OPI’s Suzi Loves Cowboy, Essie’s Mink Muffs, and butter LONDON’s Toffee. There’s just something so cozy about brown nails that feels right as the leaves begin to change. Especially when paired with a chunky knit sweater on a crisp day! 🍁
Lush forest green nails provide the perfect base to help you channel your inner woodland fairy all autumn long! Emerald, sage, olive – no matter which green you choose, these nature-inspired polishes feel magical for fall.
Some of our top picks are OPI’s Worth a Pretty Penne, Essie’s Stylenomics, and Deborah Lippmann’s My Boyfriend’s Back. Paint your nails in one of these rich green lacquers before heading out to the pumpkin patch or apple orchard for maximum seasonal style!
You really can’t go wrong with a classic black manicure, which always looks chic and put-together. Black nail polish is having a major moment this fall. According to Nail Polish Statistics, black is trending as the most popular nail color this autumn, with a whopping 73% of people surveyed saying that they plan to wear it.
We suggest trying OPI’s Black Onyx, Essie’s Licorice, or Butter London’s Black Knight. Matte, shiny, or anything in between – black nails are always a sophisticated choice. Ground your fall look with this adaptable neutral on your fingertips.
Copper foil nail designs are a super stylish and elegant nail art trend for fall. The warm reddish-brown tone of copper makes for a sophisticated manicure that pairs perfectly with fall wardrobe colors.
There are a few techniques for applying copper foil nail art:
- Full copper foil nails – Covering each entire nail with a thin copper foil for a metallic effect.
- Copper tip – Placing a piece of copper foil only on the tip of the nail for an ombre look.
- Copper cuticle accent – Using small copper foil shapes to highlight the cuticle area.
- Copper stripes or geometric shapes – Cutting the foil into stripes or shapes and layering it over a nude or dark nail polish.
Copper foils pair nicely with other fall nail colors and textures like burgundy, hunter green, black, brown, and nudes. Topping it with a glossy top coat really makes the foil shine.
For glamorous golden nails, gold foil is the perfect choice. The rich, shiny metallic effect of gold foil nail art makes it extra eye-catching. There are many creative ways to wear this trend:
- Full gold foil fingertips for maximum sparkle.
- Placing gold foil over your nail tips creates an ombre appearance.
- Using foil strips for horizontal lines across the nail.
- Cutting out gold foil shapes like stars, hearts, or triangles for accent nails.
- Layering gold foil over nude, black, white, or burgundy polish for a pop of shine.
Gold foil works beautifully for special occasions like weddings, parties and holiday events. It looks amazing paired with dark fall shades or glittery polish for lots of festive glam.
Rose Gold Foil
Rose gold foil nails are super feminine and trendy for fall nail art designs. The soft, warm rosiness of rose gold foil is very flattering on the nails. There are endless possibilities for creative application:
- Covering all nails with rose gold foil for an overall metallic rose manicure.
- Placing rose gold foil over nude nails in an ombre fade effect.
- Using foil strips to create vertical, diagonal or chevron patterns.
- Cutting the foil into abstract shapes or lace patterns for accent nails.
- Layering over black, burgundy, dark green, or nude nail polish.
Rose gold looks beautiful on its own or can be embellished with crystal accents, glitter polish or fall-inspired nail art like leaves, flowers or pumpkins. It’s a charming foil choice for autumn.
Silver foil nail designs are edgy and modern for fall nail trends. The reflective, mirror-like finish of silver foil looks incredibly cool and eye-catching on nails. Creative silver foil ideas include:
- Covering all nails with silver foil for chrome looking tips.
- Placing foil on the lower half of the nail for a unique ombre effect.
- Using strips of foil to create bold stripes or argyle patterns.
- Cutting out shapes like stars, lightning bolts, or half moons for accent nails.
- Layering over dark polish colors like black, navy, dark red, or gunmetal gray.
Silver foil looks awesome as a full metallic manicure or paired with your favorite dark fall polish shades. For extra flair, add crystal studs, glitter accents, or fall details like leaves and acorns.
Fall leaf nail art is a super cute way to celebrate the changing seasons. Paint your nails a deep forest green or burnt orange as a base. Then use nail vinyls or tape to create leaf shapes. Fill them in with shades of red, yellow, and brown.
Adding a matte top coat gives your design a more realistic leaf texture. For an extra pop, add a shiny topcoat just to the leaf details so they stand out.
Another easy leaf idea is to paint different colored leaves on each nail. Go for classic fall tones like red, orange, yellow, brown, and green. Use a striping brush to paint on the leaf shapes. Adding veins with a toothpick makes them more realistic.
Spruce it up by painting your ring finger a dark color and adding a white leaf for contrast.
Acorns are another fun fall motif for your nails. Paint your nails a chocolate brown for the nut shell. Then use a dotting tool dipped in orange and red polish to add the acorn cap. You can dot on circles or do a U-shape for a 3D effect.
For extra dimension, attach tiny beads, rhinestones, or gold studs to the center of the acorn caps.
A colorful acorn design starts with a base of navy or dark green. Paint on acorn caps in bright fall tones like yellow, orange, red, and plum. Outline them in black for definition. Another idea is to do alternating solid and acorn nails.
Try a pattern of red, acorn, orange, acorn, and so on for high impact.
What’s more fall than pumpkins? There are so many ways to incorporate them into your mani. Paint your nails orange and use a toothpick to draw on Jack-o-lantern faces. Black polish works best but you can also do green, purple or glitter. Go for a minimalist look with just triangle eyes and a nose.
For a pumpkin patch effect, start with a light blue or pink base. Add green grass details with striping polish or a small brush. Dot on different sized orange circles for the pumpkins. Outline them and add stems with a toothpick. Accent your ring finger with just one large pumpkin for the focal point.
Plaid is a classic fall pattern that transitions perfectly from back-to-school to autumn. Do a simple two-tone plaid by painting your nails a base color in one direction then layering a contrasting shade across in the other direction.
Some color combinations that evoke fall are: black and orange, red and grey, brown and yellow, or dark green and cream.
For buffalo check plaid, paint your nails white as the base coat. Let dry then use striping polish or a striper brush dipped in black to create mini check marks. Leave some white showing between the black lines.
For extra flair, add black check marks over an accent nail in forest green or burnt orange.
Negative Space Nail Art
French tip nails are a timeless and chic nail design that beautifully complements fall fashion trends. To create this look, paint the tips of your nails white while leaving the rest of the nail bare. The stark contrast between the colored tips and nude base creates a super flattering, negative space effect.
While classic white French tips are stunning, play around with different colors like black, blue, or dark red for an edgy twist. No matter what hue you choose, keep tips thin for a modern, clean look. Finish with a shiny topcoat to really make them pop.
Half moon nails may just be one of the coolest negative space manicures for autumn. To get this look, paint the center of your nail one color while leaving a half circle near the base bare. The exposed half moon shape is so unique and eye-catching.
Half moons look amazing in dark fall shades like burgundy, forest green, navy, or black. For extra allure, use metallic lacquers. You can also play with different placements of the half moon. Try placing it higher up on the nail or on one side for fun variations.
Chevron nail designs will add bold definition to your fall manicure. To achieve this look, paint stripes on your nails that point downward toward the tip, resembling upside down V shapes. Leave negative space between each stripe. The chevron pattern is so edgy and fierce.
Black and white chevrons make a graphic statement. Or get seasonal with maroon and orange stripes over a nude base. Go for different width stripes and experiment with the angles. Adding glitter or rhinestones in between chevrons takes this trend to the next level.
Rock chevron tips or full chevron nails for maximum allure.
Minimalist Fall Nails
Matte nail polish has become a popular trend for fall manicures. The muted, velvety finish pairs perfectly with fall’s more neutral color palette. Try a dark gray or light brown matte shade for an effortlessly cool look.
Adding matte topcoat over any color instantly dials down the shine for a more subtle nail design. Matte also helps nails last longer since the finish hides chips and imperfections. For the office or running errands, matte nails are always fashionable.
Glossy nails make for an easy, put-together manicure for fall. The high-shine finish looks great with darker autumnal colors like burgundy, forest green, and rich brown. It also makes neon brights pop. Glossy red or orange nails will spice up any fall outfit.
Unlike summer pastels, glossy deeper tones are sophisticated for the cooler months while still making a statement. Try a classic crimson or metallic midnight blue. Keeping nails glossy and maintained just takes a few minutes but elevates any look.
Nothing is as timeless and versatile for nail color as a fresh nude shade. From pale beige to warmer tan and soft pink undertones, nude nails complement both warm and cool skin tones. The neutral palette acts as a blank canvas to let jewelry, makeup and fall fashion shine.Styled with a monochromatic outfit in corresponding earth tones, neutral manicures seamlessly pull any look together.
They also create longer, slimmer-looking fingers. Sheer gloss or cream nudes work for the office. Go bold with a rich mocha nude shade on weekends.
Ombre nails blend two colors in a subtle fade down the nail for added visual interest. The gradient effect is easy to DIY at home. It’s also a fun way to transition summer brights into fall. Start with a bold orange or neon at the cuticle fading into a deeper cranberry or forest green towards the tip.
Or do a chocolate brown melting into black for a moody manicure. Ombre looks beautiful in both glossy and matte finishes. The blended shades can be inspired by fall foliage like a red-orange leaf turning golden. Let ombre nails reflect the changing seasons.
Fall is the perfect time to break out rich, mood-boosting shades that speak to the season. Whether you go for an eye-catching accent nail, delicate negative space design, or an easy ombre fade, these cute nail ideas will have you excited for sweater weather.
Don’t be afraid to layer on metallics and textures too. Most importantly, have fun with your mani and enjoy the fall spirit!