Nail Techs Swear By These Dark Nail Colours for An Expensive-Looking Manicure

There are some nail colours that exude a classy vibe. They are the expensive-looking nails colours that transcend nails trends, and make you look like you dropped a lot of money on your manicure. You see, dark nail colours tick all of the boxes. They're chic, ultra-glossy and add a certain luxurious vibe to your fingertips. In fact, I'm wearing these nails colours all through autumn and winter to elevate my nails alongside my autumn/winter wardrobe.

There are certain dark nail colours that I've been recommended by nail techs over the years, both in gel polish and nail polish, and they've become somewhat iconic. And I see them everywhere when I scroll on Instagram. There's an art to making dark nails look as luxe as possible. Manicurists tell me that dark nail polishes look best on short nails, with a soft square or oval shape, for the most luxe-looking results. Dark nails can look great on long nails too, but lend more of a gothic vibe. For this look, keeping nails short lets the nail colour do the talking.

If you're ready for some dark nail colour ideas, scroll ahead to see all the best dark nail inspiration I've saved, as well as the best dark nail polishes to recreate the look at home if you're not heading into the salon.

1. Bordeaux

Deep red, burgundy, oxblood or Bordeaux—whatever you call it, it's a timeless and chic option if you want to go for a dark nail colour that's elevated. Nail techs love OPI's Malaga Wine and Chanel's iconic Rouge Noir nail polishes for a dark red mani, which is pictured above.

Shop Bordeaux nails polishes:

OPI carry this shade in both gel and nail polish.

Price shown is member price.

The ultimate vampy red doesn't exi—.

One of Chanel's most iconic nail colours—you won't regret buying this.

2. Hunter Green

Dark nail colours: dark green nails @smythsisters



If you find black too harsh, then opting for a deep green is a chic way to tap into the dark nail colour trend. In fact, I've been seeing so many people wearing this Bioscultpture gel shade in Free Lovin'. If you want to recreate the look with polish, I've found some equally beautiful options below.

Shop hunter green nail polishes:

I'm obsessed with this Mavala shade, which is an absolute steal.

Essie's formulas are great for the price.

3. Onyx

Dark nail colours: dark green nails @monikh



Black is an excellent choice for nails. Like black boots or a black leather handbag, black nails will go with whatever you're wearing, no matter the time of the year. As this hue is so dark chips can be more prominent, so be sure to apply a top coat every other day to keep chipping at bay if you're opting for nail polish.

I'm adding this to my basket along with my Autumn/Winter purchases.

I can attest that this Gucci black polish is ultra glossy.

4. Chocolate

I'm seeing brown nails everywhere night now. Brown nails were backstage at London Fashion Week for SS24 and I spied them on the hands of the LFW attendees, too. Wether you opt for dark bitter brown or milk chocolate, there's a brown nail polish hue to suit everyone. Nail pros love OPI's range of brown nail polishes, as well as the longevirty of CND's Vinylux polishes.

Shop chocolate brown nail polishes:

The perfect dark chocolate shade, with an ultra-glossy finish.

Who What Wear UK deputy editor, Maxine Eggenberger, wore this shade to LFW and it looked amazing.

& Other Stories have a chic range of brown-toned nail polishes.

5. Olive

Dark nail colours: dark olive nails @iramshelton



I've been seeing olive green nails a lot lately. While in summer we wore matcha green, for Autumn/Winter I'm seeing more khaki and olive tones doing the rounds. It's the ideal colour if you want a pop of colour that still feels right for the season.

Shop olive green nail polishes:

This on-trend hue from Off-White has a sleek matte finish.

If you need your nails to dry stat, this formula is hard to beat.

6. Navy

Inky blues lend a brilliant shine to nails, and much like a navy jumper or dark wash of denim, it's a timeless colour to have in your nail wardrobe too. Trust me, it'll go with everything. The above shade is Bioscultpture's Blue Mushroom if you want to ask your nail tech for it. However, Chanel, Dior and Nails Inc have some beautiful navy blues for your DIY mani at home.

Shop dark blue nail polishes:

The deepest, darkest navy I've found in polish form.

Nails Inc's formula are fast-drying for speedy manicures.

I'll be wearing this navy hue season after season.

7. Rosewood

I see this beautiful brown-red shimmer crop up around this time of the year, and it's such a pretty shade if you want a deeper take on red. The brown undertone in this Rosewood Stardust shade by Biosculpture has flecks of gold shimmer, making it a great hue to take you through any occasion.

Shop rosewood nail polishes:

If you want a nail polish version of Biosculpture's gel shade, this is a great alternative.

This red-brown shade from Chanel looks so beautiful on short nails.

Max Factor's nail formulas are overlooked—and I love this colour.