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5 Japanese Nail Trends You Have To Try

Posted on October 26 2018

Japanese nail trends

It’s no secret that Japan is one of the most fashionable countries in the world - from their clothing choices and hairstyles to their brightly-coloured nails. Cute, stylish and unique, Japanese nail designs are always in trend and undeniably eye-catching.

Looking to expand your nail art repertoire? Go ahead and get creative with these flashy, daring nail trends - straight from the land of the rising sun!


1. Asymmetrical Nails

Asymmetrical Nails

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Asymmetrical or mismatched nails are huge in Japan, where most women prefer having different designs and colour schemes on each nail or finger. From abstracts to cartoon characters to geometric designs - anything goes, as long as no two nails look the same.

Our recommendations: You’ll want to ease into this trend with a simple pattern (like geometric lines). Pick a cool colour to use as the base (we personally recommend Lady Rain), then use Black Widow and a fine brush to paint different designs on each finger.


2. 3-D Nails

3-D nails
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Colourful and eye-catching, these shiny gel nails with tiny 3-D embellishments are a hallmark of Japanese nail design. Not only do they amp up the bling, they’ll literally add an extra dimension to your everyday manicure.

Our recommendations: While any combination of colours will do, the Japanese are especially fond of bright pastel shades (like Cotton Candy Skies or Mint For Each Other). Feel free to experiment with different colours and designs, and finish off by adding the tiny nail embellishments, which can easily be purchased online.


3. “Kawaii” Nails

Kawaii nails

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“Kawaii” means “cute” in Japanese - which perfectly describes this adorable nail trend! Usually favoured by girls and the young at heart, kawaii nails feature bright colours, cartoonish characters and sweet, feminine designs.

Our recommendations: Try doing your own “kawaii” polka dot design, using sweet, colourful shades like Tickle Me Pink and Snow White. (Teddy bears optional!)


4. Flower Designs

Flower designs
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Flower designs or motifs are extremely popular in Japan - especially those featuring cherry blossoms. They’re a special flower for the country, seen as a symbol of life, hope and love.

Our recommendations: With the help of toothpicks, you’ll easily be able to replicate these delicate blooms on your own nails. For colours, go with a deep red like Jetsetter Jimmy, and a sweet pink like Bare It All.


5. Anime-Inspired Nails

Anime-inspired nails
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Also known as “itanails”, anime-inspired nail art is currently one of the country’s hottest trends. “Ita” means “pain” - and while the designs themselves don’t hurt, it’s meant to describe how painfully embarrassing it is to have anime or manga-related images on your nails!

Despite this, the trend is becoming increasingly popular, especially among otaku (fans of Japanese anime or manga).


From the cute and colourful to the unique and flashy, Japanese nail designs cover a wide spectrum of different styles and trends, and will definitely make you stand out from the crowd.

Want to try some of these uber-trendy nail designs yourself? We don’t blame you! Grab one of our starter kits, and get ready to show some Japanese spirit with your next manicure!

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