Plaid Nail Art: The Candy-Coloured Manicure Trend Taking Fashion To Your Fingertips

It’s no surprise that fashion often transcends its original purpose. And while our most worn prints and patterns tend to transform into graphic makeup looks, sometimes, they make their way to our digits too.

And so is the case for the latest manicure trend on offer, Plaid Nails.

Thanks to 2021 winter trends, plaid is certainly making a comeback but not in the way one would think. No longer are we seeing the check pattern in the form of button-up shirts emulating cowgirl chic, instead, it’s reclaiming the stage in the form of outerwear.
From wool coats to shackets, pastel and neutral varieties reign supreme as the print of the season. Which can leave one wondering, why can’t our finger tips have some plaid-shaped love too?

The print may lean more traditional, with lines sitting horizontal and vertical in widths of various thickness and gaps that alternate in distance or can serve as a perfect series of multi-coloured squares à la a picnic blanket.

The latter has been mastered by celebrity nail artist, Betina Goldstein, who continuously proves that salon quality manicures only require patience and, well, the right tools of course.

When it comes to colour choices, a traditional plaid sticks to three colours: one hero colour, one support colour and a fine detail colour. But if you’re aiming for Goldstein’s tablecloth-esque variation, then up to five harmonious colours can work wonders.

To nail the look at home (no pun intended), start by applying a clear base coat. Once dry, take a fine nail art brush and split the nail into thirds, using two vertical lines, in a neutral colour.

Once dry, do the same horizontally, creating two lines to split the nail into thirds. After the outline is completely dry, using the same brush, take your first colour and fill in one of the boxes. Repeat this step for the remainder, using a different colour for each box. Once completely dry, apply a top coat and voilà, plaid nails are complete.

The best part? Despite looking a little complicated, this is one design that is relatively easy to replicate at home, as long as you have a thin nail brush and, well, a steady hand.

But of course, you can simply head to your local salon if straight lines aren’t your strong suit.

Below, we’ve rounded up the best plaid nails to inspire your next trip to the manicurist.

Main image: @betina_goldstein