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The ultimate pick-me-up

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Just like your morning latte, bold nail art adds that extra little hit to your day.

Photography: David Newton, Beauty Director: Evie Leatham

Rise and Shine

During winter’s bone-chilling mornings the ‘ombre’ nail – one colour fading into another – is the easiest way to inject some much-needed cheer. “Modernise this sunrise-inspired graduation of orange to red with subtle embellishment,” says Michelle Humphrey, Maybelline New York’s nail artist who created the looks on these pages. “Whether it’s polka-dots in a contrasting colour or adding an animal print such as black leopard spots over the top, detail is key.”

Work It Out

Bright, graphic nails can be office appropriate as long as you know your limits. “Two years ago you wouldn’t dare to wear anything more risque than a nude manicure or dark red nails to the office,” says Humphrey. But just as fashion’s bright prints have been embraced in the business world, we can now afford to be bolder with our nails. “Keep it smart by using suit-inspired designs like a houndstooth check. With geometric prints, use strong contrasting colours. Alternatively, keep the pattern the same but paint each nail a different base colour.”

Cocktail Hour

Spearheaded by style icons such as Lana Del Rey, ladylike nails have transformed from long and oval to even longer – think of it as the Louboutin of nails. “This shape is not for work – it’s just not very practical – but this ‘of the moment’ nail shape gives the hand a graceful elegance by elongating the fingers. For evening anything goes,” explains Humphrey. “Go for longer and darker with more bling. Use contrasting sequins for an all-out effect or crystals in the same tones as the nail.”

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