Home Tips & Trends Fashion Nails The Trendiest Nail Shapes – Explained

The Trendiest Nail Shapes – Explained

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By this point in time, we’ve all heard the iconic Lizzo lyrics “Hair toss. Check my nails. Baby how you feeling’? Feel good as H-E-Double Hockey Sticks.” There’s just something about having a fresh set of nails that makes us feel like we can accomplish anything we set our minds to. While it’s easy enough to spot a great manicure from a mile away, those who aren’t professional manicurists may have a harder time identifying the exact nail shape a baddie is sporting. Here are some of the trendiest nail shapes in the market and how you can get the look on your own.


Stiletto nails are arguably one of the most glam and classic nail shapes that a person can rock, they’re edgy, cool, and totally on trend. 

Like with the classic heel shape, stiletto nails derive their name from the French word for dagger, ‘stiletto’. Stiletto nails are long nails that feature pointed, almost dagger-like tips, perfect for any femme-fatale or glamazon alike. Since it’s practically impossible to grow out and maintain long enough nails for a stiletto look, the best route is to go with a set of acrylics.  Here’s how to DIY: 

  • Gently push back the cuticle (the clear skin located along the bottom edges of your fingers and toes) with a cuticle pusher, till no cuticle remains on the nail bed. Use a buffing tool, like the KISS Multipurpose Buff & Shine nail file to remove all shine to the nail, softly swiping left and right over the entire nail bed. Remove the dust by wiping the nails off with some acetone on a cotton pad.
  • Find yourself a set of long acrylic nails, like the KISS Salon Acrylic Natural Nails and file the bottom edge of the nail to better fit to individual nail bed widths. Apply a thin layer of nail layer of nail glue and apply each nail accordingly. Once the nail glue has dried down and the nails are firmly on, file the edges of the nail to a sharpened point. 

  • Go in with your favorite nail polish color or for a more DIY salon approach, first go in with a layer of the KISS Salon Dip Base Gel. Pick a dip color powder, perhaps go classic vamp with KISS Salon Dip Color Powder “Hot Topic”? Pour the powder into the dip tray and slide each finger into the tray. Then dust off the excess powder from all ten nails with a sponge.
  • One nail at a time, apply a second layer of the base gel. Make sure to wipe the brush onto a paper towel in between each application before placing the brush back into the gel bottle, then dip into the powder once again and then shake off excess powder. 
  • Making sure to avoid skin, apply a generous amount of the KISS Salon Dip Activator to each nail. File to shape and buff smooth, then remove dust with a sponge. Then go in with a second coat of the Activator to all ten nails. 
  • Remove excess Activator by wiping the nail surface with a dry paper towel. Then apply two even layers of a top gel coat, like the KISS Salon Dip Top Gel, as you would a regular top coat and let the nails air dry for ten to fifteen minutes. 

The sweeter version of the stiletto nail would be the almond-shaped nail. Almond nails and stilettos nails both require a longer nail length and tapered sides, but that’s where the similarities end. Stiletto nails require a long length and the points are filed down to a dagger-like tip, whereas almond nails require a medium-to-long length and are more oval-shaped with a softened-out pointed. For almond nails, you can go with your own nails grown out or go with a medium-to-long length set of acrylics, taper down the sides and file till the tip of your nails resemble the tip of an almond. 


Aren’t these nails just to die for? As you may have guessed, the name for this nail shape derives from its resemblance to a coffin. They are also known as “ballerina” nails for their resemblance to a dancer’s slipper. Essentially, coffin nails are a stiletto nail with a square tip versus a pointed one. The best way to get these nails is to let your nails grow up, file the nails into a pointed oval-shape, grab a nail clipper, like the KISS Artificial Nail Tip Clipper, and file the edges and tip till they’re soft to the touch. If you don’t have the patience to grow out your own nails, you can try the imPRESS Color Press-on Manicure (“Latte”) for a neutral version of the look. And for the gothic glam girlies, you can also give the imPRESS Color Press-on Manicure The (“Dark Room”) a go.

author avatar
Nicole Kirichanskaya
Nicole Kirichanskaya is a born-and-raised Brooklynite with a passion for fashion, feminism, and the fanciful. Her love of beauty stems from when she was taught the importance of a good manicure at an early age from her Ukrainian babushka. She has written for a number of publications including Global Glam Magazine, CEW, Footwear News, and more.