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What color nails to wear on beach vacation?

Going on a beach vacation is always exciting! The sun, the sand, the surf – it’s the perfect chance to relax and recharge. But amidst all the fun in the sun, you’ll still want your nails to look great for those Instagram shots by the ocean. So what nail polish colors work best for a beach getaway? Here’s a breakdown of the top colors to wear on your beach vacation!

Bright Pink

A bright, eye-catching pink is a perfect choice for your beach mani! Pink nails pop against tan skin and will stand out great in photos. A hot pink shade gives off a fun, summery vibe – plus it pairs well with all your swimsuits. Some top pink nail polish picks for the beach include OPI Big Apple Red, Essie Bachelorette Bash, and China Glaze Spontaneous. These bright pinks are vibrant but also relatively sheer, so they’ll look great even with a bit of chipping.


What’s more beachy than coral? A pretty coral or peach nail color is right at home in a seaside setting. Shades like Essie Sunday Funday, OPI Cajun Shrimp, and Orly Beach Cruiser are peachy-pink corals that coordinate with beach landscapes. Coral nails also flatter sun-kissed skin. For an on-trend beach mani, try a neon coral like Orly Hot Shot or China Glaze Neon & On and On. The pop of neon looks amazing next to the ocean.


A crisp white manicure is a beach vacation classic. White nails are simple but stunning, letting your beachy location be the star. Essie’s Marshmallow is the perfect opaque ivory white for the beach. Sheer white polishes like OPI Funny Bunny and Zoya Purity give a more elegant, natural look. For a bright twist, go for a pearly shimmery white like OPI Alpine Snow. White nails go with everything and will look clean all vacation long.


Metallic nail polish adds instant glam to your beach look. Shimmery chromes like Essie Penny Talk and OPI Chromatic Addict look dazzling in the sun. Holographic metallics like FUN Lacquer Sandy Toes amplify the sparkling ocean. Rose gold and copper metallics like Zoya Rue and China Glaze Sun Of A Peach embody beachy beauty. And nothing says “vacation mode” like an eye-catching gold, like Essie Good As Gold or OPI Suzi Loves Cowboy. Metallics make your nails shine as bright as the summer sun.


For a more understated beach mani, go for a neutral nude polish. Soft beige and taupe nudes complement sun-kissed skin without overpowering your beachy look. Essie’s Sand Tropez is a perfect sandy beige, while OPI Bubble Bath and Zoya Bevin are flattering pinky nudes. Sheer neutral shades like Essie Topless & Barefoot blend right in for a polished but natural manicure. Nude nails are versatile and easy to wear on vacation.


Channel the colors of the water and sky with a ocean blue nail polish! Light cerulean blues like Essie Bikini So Teeny and OPI Fly look pretty and nautical for the beach. Or go bold with a bright royal blue like China Glaze Blue Hawaiian – it pops against tanned skin and white sand. Dark navy blues like Zoya Harley make a sophisticated beach choice too. And nothing’s more fun than a glittery blue like Orly La Playa for a little oceanfront sparkle!


Green nails are an unexpected but perfect beach look. Pale seafoam greens like OPI Sea the Ocean and Essie Mint Candy Apple have an aquatic vibe. Neons like Orly Liquid Vinyl and Essie Mojito Madness are tropical and fun. Dark khaki greens like Zoya Olivera and olive greens like Essie Stylenomics are earthy options that match the seaside landscape. However you wear it, green nail polish is cool, retro and stylish by the shore.


When you’re packing your bags for a beach getaway, don’t forget to bring some fun summer nail polish colors too! Bright pinks, sunny corals, glimmering metallics, ocean blues and refreshing greens will all help you achieve a perfect beach mani. Sheer nudes and classic whites are easy go-tos as well. Whichever shades you choose, your nails will have you looking beach-ready and Instagram glam from your pedicure to your tips. So pick out a few vacation-worthy polishes and get ready to relax in style on your next beach trip!


What nail polish lasts the longest on the beach?

Long-lasting gel manicures or shellac nails are your best bet for nail polish longevity on the beach. The UV light-cured polish is more chip-resistant and can last through full weeks of vacation without reapplying. Regular polish can last fairly well too if you apply a base coat and top coat and avoid excessive water exposure.

What color nails look best with a tan?

Bright, vivid shades tend to look best and really pop against tan skin. Pink, coral, red, neon, and metallic polishes in particular illuminate a sun-kissed glow. Light nudes can wash out a tan, while dark colors like black, purple, or dark blue may be too bold and distracting.

Should you get a pedicure before a beach vacation?

Yes! Prepping your toes with a salon pedicure is smart before a beach getaway. The callus removal and moisturizing will keep feet sandal-ready. Get your pedi 1-2 weeks pre-trip so it has time to fully heal. Then bring polish to do touch-ups if your pedicure starts to chip while on vacay.

How do you do beach-proof nails?

Waterproof top coats, avoiding dark colors that can stain, and short nail lengths can help your mani last at the beach. Always wear sunscreen on hands to prevent burning that can cause nails to peel. And bring cuticle oil to keep nails moisturized after frequent water exposure and sun damage.

What colors look good with a beach tan?

The best colors to complement a beach tan include vibrant jewel tones like emerald green, sapphire blue, and amethyst purple. Black and white looks crisp and chic too. Soft pastels in lilac, mint, or peach also enhance tanned skin beautifully. Bronzed metallics like gold and rose gold tie in perfectly as well.

Nail Color Recommendations for Beach Vacation

Nail Color Examples Why It Works
Bright pink OPI Big Apple Red, Essie Bachelorette Bash Pops against tan skin, summery and fun
Coral Essie Sunday Funday, Orly Beach Cruiser Complements seaside landscapes, beachy
White Essie Marshmallow, OPI Alpine Snow Crisp, elegant, matches everything
Metallic OPI Chromatic Addict, FUN Lacquer Sandy Toes Sparkles in the sun, eye-catching
Nude Essie Topless & Barefoot, OPI Bubble Bath Understated, polished, natural
Blue Essie Bikini So Teeny, Orly La Playa Ocean and sky tones, fun shimmer
Green OPI Sea the Ocean, Essie Stylenomics Tropical, earthy, retro

When prepping your nails for a beach getaway, choose bright, happy colors that go great with summer fun! Vibrant pinks, corals, metallics, and ocean blues are perfect for seaside manicures. Sheer nudes and clean whites give a more classic beach look. And don’t be afraid to get creative with unexpected shades like greens. With a little planning, you can rock stylish, vacation-ready nails on your next beach trip!