Moody French Moon Nails Are Giving A Modern Remix To Basic Tips

You might be wondering, what exactly are French moon nails? While the answer varies from source to source, the general consensus seems to be that they're nails with a black French tip instead of the well-known white tip. Hypebae recently reported on Lizzo rocking the new twist on the classic style, agreeing that the French moon means any application of a dark color over the tip of the nail. But what makes this style so in-the-now if it's just a goth take on the French tip? There are many ways to rock this look, from the classic to more new-age. The French moon has inspired too many new styles to count, and best of all, there are so many to choose from that no matter your personal style, you're sure to find one that perfectly matches what you want for your next manicure. 

Before you run out and get a new set to dazzle, plan ahead. Not just about what style you're going to take to your nail technician, but also things like how to make your acrylic nails last longer, any formal events you have coming up that you may need to match your nails for, and the state of your nails' health. Once you've got those things out of the way, you'll be ready to confidently carry one of these French moon nail designs. 

Black tie

These adorable French moon nails have that black-tie feeling that comes with an elegantly cut suit or a glamorous dress. These especially complement fancy jewelry and professional outfits, adding just a bit of chic to the look without being too flashy. With black and silver complimenting the nude base of the nail, this manicure is a simple, classy statement. 

Waxing moon

Keeping in line with the black, nude, and silver, these gorgeous waxing French moon nails change the style up without going too crazy. The trailing stripes of black French tip give the impression of shadows, while the clever curl of the main design perfectly imitates a sliver of crescent moons. This look works best with curved nails, but changing it up a bit should allow the idea to complement any nail shape. 

Black daisy

Black French moon nails perfectly complement the softer aesthetic, as well. These cute gem-centered white daisies add just a bit of flair to the otherwise standard French moon, while also softening the look as a whole. For an extra pop of color, you can try to mimic other flowers with your manicure, making it uniquely your own. Or, for a more toned-down look, remove the gem centers of each flower. 

Cinderella slippers

These tri-crescent nails won't disappear at midnight, but they'll still make you feel like you're living in a fairy tale. With a cute, nude-pink base, these nails give the feeling of glass slippers as seen by moonlight, complete with the perfect black tip to keep the look feeling mature. Best of all? This set doesn't require a fairy godmother; just bring a reference photo for your nail tech, and your next trip to the salon will feel like a dream come true. 

Knife's edge

Another take on the classic French tip style, these sweeping black tips cut off suddenly on one side, as though parted by the edge of a knife. This manicure is slick, cool, and a tad dangerous. You don't need any extra glam to make this look pop, but these nails will flawlessly pair with statement jewelry like rings and bracelets, so if you like to accessorize, definitely give this set a try. 

Much love

Another simple way to take the French moon look a step further is with the addition of a little black heart right next to your cuticle. You can do this on a few accent nails or deck out a full set, but either way, this cute manicure stays simple while wowing. For an extra pop of glam, try 3D hearts or a bit of sparkle. 

Yin yang

These French moon nails incorporate the seamless balance of the yin-yang symbol. With just that one dot of white polish, the look is completely transformed. This is a great one for if you want to step away from a nude base and try white, or if you don't want that tiny bit of white, try a nude color for that second dot to keep your manicure matching throughout. No matter which way you try it, this style is as timeless as it is beautiful. 

Barely there

These barely-there French moon nails are unquestionably one for the books. While they may seem like simple nude nails at first glance, that even, thin line of black truly elevates the look. This style works well with any shape of nail, accentuating the style you choose with that pencil-thin line of black. This one is another look that helps to complement your accessories, so feel free to break out your favorite rings and bracelets. 

Night and day

These night and day nails perfectly blend the classic French tip with the modern French moon twist, and better yet, the application of tiny hearts near the tips balances out the look and brings the whole thing together. Try different elements in place of the hearts to change the vibe of this manicure — stars, circles, triangles, and other symbols completely transform this design's feel without straying too far from the original. 

Envelope fold

For being such a simple design, this particular French moon manicure is almost unbearably cute. If you already know how to give yourself the perfect French tip manicure at home, then you can probably put this design to use without too much extra effort. This is another look that can be changed depending on the shape of your nails, so take that into consideration. Otherwise, though, enjoy how the simplicity of this design adds a touch of sophistication to any outfit. 

Moon spell

Circling back to French moon nails being the new, goth take on the classic, why not lean a little further into the gothic look with some designs at the top of the nail? Anything that evokes a sense of a spell or hex will transform your French moon nails into flawless moon spell nails with little effort. For an extra goth twist, try a stiletto shape with this design.  

Moon shadow

Trailing the tip of a French moon up to the cuticle makes for a lovely moon shadow. The rounder your nail, the more shadow-like this design looks, while boxier nails will give you a more dramatic edge. This look is highly customizable with plenty of negative space to fill if you feel like you need just a bit more for your nails, but it also says a lot all by itself. 

Dark rose

Adding a bit of sparkle to your French moon nails already makes them more fun and trendy, but having a few flowers for your accent nails makes this manicure stand out from the crowd. A black rose or two would truly make this design the gothic set of your dreams, while softer and lighter colored flowers can help temper the serious aura a black French tip gives off. These dark blue flowers play well with black, while the green stems bring out their color to separate them from black. Remove the sparkles for a more serious look, or try more stylized flowers to make it even cuter. 

Color bleed

What's even better than a French moon on a colored base? A French moon manicure with color bleed centers. This look is simply show-stopping, carefully fading each color out before it meets the black tip of the nail or touches the cuticle, giving it a glow that you'd be hard-pressed not to adore on sight. For a simpler look, you can choose one color for your full set, but these complimentary colors really mesh well together with the milky base and dark French tip. 

Elegant lines

Elevate the avant-garde feeling of the French moon style with the addition of more elegant black lines. Keeping this manicure matte instead of glossy adds to the artistic vibe, but don't be afraid to change it up with your choice of top coat. Too simple? Try subbing out the extra black lines for a color or shimmer polish. 

Rockstar glam

Naturally, a French moon works well with a bit of rockstar glam. Star-emblazoned nails are an out-of-this-world trend you can rock right now and paired with the French moon, it's even better. These 3D star charms and gems perfectly pair with a pink base to make the ultimate callback to early 2000s girl rock. Despite that, these nails fit perfectly for the modern era, and will definitely wow as soon as you exit the nail salon. Not rockstar enough for you? Add some glitter to really turn up the volume on this manicure style. 


The half-cream, half-black look is already a trendsetter, but the gently curved line distinguishes the French tip from the rest of the color. This look is a double eclipse, with the barest glimpse of the crescent moon just beyond the tip and in the division of light and dark between each side of the nail. The slight color variation between the whiter tip and the cream base especially sets the pattern apart, so be sure to take note of that if you intend to get this manicure. 

Velvet rivers

Whether you're imitating a snake, a river, or even curly hair, squiggly lines on nails are a trend that continues to impress. Square nails with a round French tip are already a '90s manicure coming back with an elevated 2023 remix, so adding the velvet look really brings the whole thing together as the ultimate retro spin. To make those rivers stand out a bit more, try a complementary color instead of the standard black. 

Animal print

Speaking of '90s trends that are back in style, leopard print hardly needs an introduction. Using animal print on an accent nail is the perfect way to incorporate the pattern without totally overwhelming your entire set, and the addition of a leopard print French tip is a stroke of genius. This look also works really well with matte if glossy isn't your style. 

Lucky number three

Adding glitter to the black of your French moon manicure makes the look feel extra cute, and the addition of a sparkling black accent nail or two is even better. This simple look is made even more modern with the addition of three simple black dots to the nude base of your French moon. Why three? According to the Welsh National Opera, the ancient Greeks considered three to be the perfect number, symbolizing harmony, wisdom and understanding. Regardless of the reason, 3 remains a magic number to this day, so you can be certain that it will look perfect as an element in your next manicure. 

Black and gold

Black and gold is a timeless combination, and for good reason. A French moon looks beautiful with some flakes of gold, a few accent gems, and the application of a pearlescent coat to make the whole thing shine. Iridescent mother-of-pearl nails are going to be your go-to shimmery Spring mani, so if you need to depart from the usual on them, just adding the shine to a French moon can really pull the two trendy looks together. Better yet, try a mother-of-pearl base for your nail with a French moon tip.

Moon and sky

Not only is the unique shape of these French moon nails to die for, but the sky tones also make them even cuter. The subtle ombré with the nearly nude-toned pink truly makes this style artistic and beautiful. You can try subbing out the pink for a white or cream color to further emulate the sky tones. 

Matte shine

The two-tone black nail is one of the top chic minimalist nail designs for your next manicure. This take on the French moon is so classy and simple. The glossy tip combined with the matte nail adds a sense of dimension while catching the light. You can make other, discreet designs on the rest of the nail with the shine technique, as well. 

Double moon

Coming back with the black and gold trend, these French moon nails really give meaning to the trend's name with an actual moon on the ring finger, some stars to go with, and a second crescent to follow on three nails on each hand. This gold shimmer really works well with the glossy top coat, and of course, the two colors complement each other well. With a statement thumbnail, this look is sure to capture your heart. 

Glitter and pearl

3D nail appliques remain all the rage, and these pearls are some of the best examples out there. Adding pearls to your manicure makes for a beautiful and elegant look. Coupled with the black tip of a French moon, there's something almost mysterious about this style that will surely draw the eyes of all around you. Tone down this look by removing the glossy top coat and go for a more matte style on the base. 


The addition of glitter confetti to your French moon nails brings a touch of pep and glam to your style. This look works great on a nude base or a color to complement the shade of your glitter. The champagne color here goes beautifully with the nude and the black, but of course, a gold or silver always works perfectly, too. If it's a little too glittery for your style to have a full set like this, try just doing an accent nail or two. 

Phases of the moon

Adding different curved lines, fills, and varying French moon techniques can give the impression of different moon phases. The gorgeous application of gray and white on this set works well with the pink-nude base of the other two fingers and leaves plenty of room for creativity if you want to take this idea and run with it. For a more elegant vibe, try a matte instead of a gloss, and for a fuller moon effect, try a nail shape with more of a curve. 

Garden grand

A French moon on an ivory base is jaw-dropping, but with a little bit of foliage near the cuticle, this style is enough to make any nail enthusiast swoon. This look is simple, elegant, and full of personality. While the black stenciling looks beautiful, you can try adding a bit of color or metallics to the vines, leaves, and flowers to make them stand out more. This manicure goes well with just about any accessory and overall style, and it complements multiple nail shapes.  

Split decision

With a black glitter polish, this French moon manicure is already ahead of the curve. The abstract style it boasts with a split down the middle, leaving half of the nail nude, is as daring as it is chic. This is a really great style for those who don't want too much in terms of polish or decoration, but still long for an upgraded nail look. 


This simple look is another great one for those who like abstract. While the barely-there French moon is already a keeper, the accent nail offers up a nude point for the nail and two asymmetrical lines ending in 3D jewels. This looks is modern, sleek, and has something about it that almost feels techno without being overtly computer-like. This looks really shows off accessories like rings and bracelets, and it also adds a bit of flare to any outfit paired with it.


For one final abstract art look, this classic French tip paired with French moons makes for the perfect geometrical manicure. The artful combination of nude, black, and white is perfectly paired with sleek lines and a gloss top coat to make the whole look pop. Try a colored line or two to take this style from professional to another vibe entirely, or keep it as is for both work and play.

Dark cherry

Another on the list of 3D nail designs to covet is the French moon with cherries. A few red gems and a couple of flecks of green nail polish on top of a black tip make this look a favorite for those looking to craft a manicure that is grown up and fun at the same time. You can use this technique to imitate other fruits, too, so have fun and experiment with them. 


This look has it all: gems, hearts, dots, and best of all, some gold half-rings and beads to line the cuticle. This French moon manicure really goes all out without overcrowding the nail or throwing too many conflicting elements together. Even without everything else, the French tip of hearts is to die for, so if the style as a whole is too much for your tastes, try that instead. 

Crescent moon

Simple, elegant, beautiful: The perfection of these French moon nails is found in how little is actually going on. A simple hollowed black crescent at the tip of each nail with a nude base, and then a glossy top coat, and this manicure is good to go. The minimalistic approach is certainly working for this manicure, so if no other French moon looks catch your eye, give this one a try before you write off the style as a whole. 

Black and pink

One last suggestion for the minimalism lover: a simple French moon with a pink base. Black and pink look beautiful together and can create all sorts of different looks depending on the shade of pink. Add a gloss, and you're good to go, and if anything else, you have a perfect starting point for something more elaborate.