Pop Art Nails Are The Most Animated Spring Manicure Trend

Pop art designs are one of the biggest new nail trends for 2023. Just like current fashion and makeup trends, pop art nails have been around for a while, but they are currently experiencing their renaissance. "Pop art nails were first popular when I started 11 years ago. It's exciting to see it come back because it's always been one of my favorites," nail artist Colleen Ruiz reveals to Allure. "The key to pop art nails is making sure the darker part looks like a shadow; the end aim is to make the nail look as if it's not real."

At first glance, it might seem like this trend doesn't have much variation, but that couldn't be further from the truth. "I love how versatile it is, not only with the colors but with the nail shapes being used — I'm seeing everything from coffin to Russian almond to stiletto," nail artist Elle Gerstein tells Allure.

If you're unsure whether you can pull this funky nail trend off, allow us to convince you that you can by showing you various ways to approach pop art nails.

Clear pop art nails

The pop art design looks just as incredible on clear nails as it does on colored ones. If you love the idea of funky and eye-catching nails but hate having to commit to a color, or if you prefer your nails natural, this might be a way for you to get the best of both worlds.

Pastel pop art nails

Pastel nails are always a trend that comes back for springtime, and this year is no different. However, classic pastel nails are kind of predictable. This is where the pop art design comes in. While you can go with just one pastel color, opting for five different ones is a lot more fun!

Valentine's Day pop art nails

With Valentine's Day just around the corner, doing a fun heart-themed pop art design in pink gradient shades is a great way to celebrate love. And you don't have to have a partner to rock this design — love is all around you and inside you, which is enough of a reason to put hearts on your nails!

Red plaid pop art nails

Pop art designs can be as intricate as you want them to be, and if you don't want all of your nails to look exactly the same, that's definitely an option too. This red design with two accent nails that have plaid tips is absolutely stunning! And yes, this design would look great in any other color, too — in case red isn't your cup of tea.

Inverted pop art nails

Most pop art designs tend to use black nail polish for the graphic lines, but just because that's the most popular option doesn't mean you have to do it that way. The graphic lines can be done in any color — and using white or gray for them looks exceptionally good if the base color of the nail is on the darker side.

Pink and purple pop art nails

While this design is also super fun to rock on Valentine's Day, hearts are actually a cute way to add a bit of extra detailing to your nails all year 'round. This time, the nail artist decided to give the hearts a thin outline in black, making them match the rest of the graphic look!

Clear and army green pop art nails

Those who don't want to commit to nails that are fully painted in vibrant color but still want a bit of that drama that colors add should definitely go for the pop art design with french tips in their desired shade. This nail artist used army green, but since the base of the nail is clear, the look is a lot more subtle than if they opted for green all over.

Glitter blue pop art nails

Metallic and glitter nails are expected to be big in 2023, and luckily, both of them can be combined with the pop art design. These nails look particularly good if the black and white nail polishes used for the graphic lines don't have glitter as that creates a much better contrast.

Short pink glitter pop art nails

While this is another stunning example of the pop art nail design done on a glittery base, another reason we wanted to include it is to showcase that pop art nails look great on short nails too. While super-long nails have been all the rage for years, it seems as if they are slowly running out of style, with plenty of the rich and famous rocking short nails recently.

Deck of cards pop art nails

Those who want to add something more to the classic pop art nail design can consider adding one or two accent nails that give a "deck of cards" vibe. While the hearts look stunning, your nail artist (or you, if you're doing it yourself) can also opt for diamonds, clubs, and spades.

Red pop art nails

A classic red is one of the most vibrant colors for the pop art nail design, which is why it's always a safe choice. "Our eyes' light receptors pick up red, orange, and yellow colors faster than other colors in the visible light spectrum, so the red hue attracts our attention quickly," color therapist Constance Hart tells Who What Wear.

Blue tips pop art nails

As previously mentioned, the pop art nail trend looks great when done just on the tips of the nails. While rounded nails look amazing too, it is square nails in particular that give off an even more dramatic vibe as they look much more cartoon-like — especially if they are very long!

Purple bedazzled pop art nails

Just because pop art nails have a specific style to them doesn't mean you can't combine the trend with others. If you want to add some extra pizzazz to your pop art nails, consider adding a couple of gemstones to some nails. Of course, make sure the positioning makes sense as it does in this design.

Hot pink pop art nails

Hot pink is another color that comes to mind when someone mentions pop art, comic books, and similar aesthetics. While the color is wearable all year around, it is particularly during warmer months that hot pink nail polish has its annual resurgence.

Comic accent pop art nails

Those who have a talented nail artist or are talented themselves should definitely opt for adding one accent nail with a classic pop art image. Yes, it will take some time to finish that nail, but the end result will be so worth it! Our suggestion would be to go for a pop art eye, as seen in this design.

Mix and match pop art nails

Since pop art tends to be colorful, vibrant, and eye-catching, you don't really have to constrain yourself too much when choosing the colors and designs you want. In fact, pop art nails tend to look better if there is some variety to them, which is why we encourage you to mix and match your nails!

Nude pop art nails

Clear pop art nails look great, but if you want to ensure your base is more even, you can always opt for a nude color instead. The end result has a similar effect, but your nails will look a tiny bit more polished and unreal — which is the effect you're going for with pop art nails.

Pointy purple pop art nails

We already mentioned that square nail tips look magnificent with this trend, but the truth is that pointy ones do as well. Of course, pointy nails aren't for everyone — especially since they tend to result in a lot of accidental scratches — but if you enjoy the dramatic look they provide, try rocking them with a pop art design!

Gray pop art nails

Pointy pop art nails also look adorable in a shorter length, and these gray ones prove it. You will notice that this time around, the sharpness has been filled down a bit, making these nails less of a scratch hazard. Even with a less dramatic feel, they are still total eye-catchers!

Slimey pop art nails

Slime is definitely one of those easy pop art designs you can use on your accent nails. While slime looks more intricate than just the regular graphic outline of the nail, the design itself doesn't take much longer to create. And as seen in this design, it looks best if you go crazy with the colors!

Ombre pink pop art nails

Pop art thrives on colorful combos, but not everyone is ready for that dedication. If you want to take baby steps in your pop art nail journey, consider sticking to the same color and picking different shades of it. The end result will be subtle ombre pop art nails that are certainly more interesting than going with just one shade.

Pastel comic pop art nails

Pastel pop art nails are great for spring, but you know what's even better? Pastel comic pop art nails! Yes, use classic comic designs such as an exclamation mark or a pow sign on a background with polka dots. While you can opt to have all nails be that dramatic, using these designs only on accent nails will achieve a similar effect.

Two-toned pop art nails

You don't often see somebody wear two different shades on their nails, one on each hand. This unique approach to rocking different colors also works flawlessly with pop art nails, and you can choose how different you want the colors to be — you can opt for similar shades or completely opposite ones!

Gray flower pop art nails

Just because pop art and comics tend to come hand in hand, that doesn't mean the designs you choose have to be the classic ones. In fact, this gray set proves that different shapes look great when drawn in pop art style — and flowers work incredibly well on accent nails.

Mint green accent pop art nails

If you're still unsure whether or not you can confidently rock pop art nails, consider trying them out as accent nails only. Yes, that means the rest of your nails will be painted in just one color — no graphic lines. But trust us, after the compliments you'll get on your accent nails, you will be ready to give a whole set the green light!