Nail Art…Tasteful or Tacky?

For all your beauty advice…

Someone asked me recently what I thought of nail art. Is it acceptable or frowned upon? Is it a do or a don’t? Is being a 36-year-old professional too old for some nail designs? Good question. Nail Art…Tasteful or Tacky?

I think there are lots of opinions on this subject. I think if you went out and asked 100 women if they thought nail art was tasteful or tacky, you would get a close call. Those who love it, stand by it and love it. Those who hate it, hate it. Here are my thoughts on this.

Why it’s tacky: When you say the words “nail art” the picture that automatically forms in my mind are super long nails with a jungle motif on them. Nails that are so long you can’t do normal every day functions and so decorated they make you dizzy are just plain scary to me. I really don’t think there is a need to have your nails jeweled, jazzed, and Heaven forbid, pierced! That’s not to say I haven’t tried it on a time or two but what it really comes down to for me is two things. #1 it’s unattractive and #2 it’s just plain distracting! You really don’t want your overdone nails to be the only thing people remember about you. I heard a quote once that went “your clothing should suggest, not advertise” I think the same can be said for nails.

Why it’s tasteful: Nail art can be subtle. I think, the more subtle, the more tasteful. I see nothing wrong with a cute design on one finger, or even one toe. There are all kinds of subtle ways you can include nail art into your manicure. A little glitter, a flower or two, adding a little color into your French manicure…these are great ways to express your love for nail art without going overboard. I think nail art for special occasions is more than acceptable. Over Christmas, I saw some really great manicures that included nail art and it wasn’t tacky at all. I’ve seen French manicures for weddings that have a little extra something in the form of nail art. Airbrushed flowers, doves and hearts are very popular for weddings. Done very small and subtle on nails of a normal length, it can definitely be tasteful and acceptable in the workplace.

A couple things to think about with nail art. The upside of it is if you indulge and you hate it, it’s just nail polish that can easily be removed. No commitment! Whether you think it’s tacky or tasteful, remember this: People who can do nail art are extremely talented! Personally, I can’t even draw a stick figure so I can’t imagine trying to create something on a fingernail. I’ve seen some beautiful work done on nails. Even some of the extreme manicures that fall into the tacky category amaze me with the talent. Those who create the designs are true artists in my mind.

So, the answer to the question remains. Nail Art…Tasteful or Tacky? I think less is more. If it’s subtle, it can be tasteful. If it’s overdone and too busy, I think it’s tacky. I think this was a great question and I hope my opinions interested you. What do you think of nail art? If you wear it, do you do it yourself or do you have your nail tech do it for you? Let me know, I look forward to your comments.

You’ve Been Beautified!

5 thoughts on “Nail Art…Tasteful or Tacky?

  1. Kim

    I love nail art but also think there is a fine line between tasteful and tacky. Thanks for putting your thoughts out there about this subject. (I love the idea of only doing one nail, both to make it stand out as well as to keep it subtle!

    Once again Brooke, you’ve NAILED it!
    Keep up the great blogs.

  2. melissa

    i could not agree more! you nailed it when you said: The upside of it is if you indulge and you hate it, it’s just nail polish that can easily be removed. No commitment!

  3. jam

    I absolutely agree with your opinion. Nail polish/art can be a fun, inexpensive accessory. It can also be tacky. I think some people stay super safe with their nails because they are too afraid of being tacky. One thing I have noticed that has a bearing on the tasteful/tacky question is your outfit/jewelry/makeup- if you wear a loud nail polish and/or nail art you need to think twice about whether it clashes and competes with everything else you have going on.

  4. I’m a naildesigner. If u want to see my works, you can estimate them. As u can see on my blog there can be real beauty hidden in the nail art. It’s all about the potential and a fantasy of a designer.

    Best regards,
    Kornelia 🙂

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