30 Must-Try Coffin Nail Designs That Scream Summer

The design possibilities are endless! 😍

close up of woman's hands with lots of gold rings and painted nails
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If you've been keeping a good eye on nail trends, you've probably noticed that, much like almond nails, coffin nails are very much in right now. And even when they're not "trending," they're still being worn by most celebrities on the reg. Some would consider this style to be better for nail veterans because of their length, but that shouldn't stop you from giving them a try.

What are coffin nails?

Coffin nails are also called "ballerina nails" because they mimic the shape of wooden pointe shoes or, well, coffins. But they're sculpted differently from the traditional square shape in that the tips of the nails are slightly more narrow with a flat edge.

Can coffin nails be short?

"This is typically a longer shape," says celebrity nail artist Elle Gerstein. That being said, the style can also look great on shorter lengths too. But, Gerstein warns,"This is not for at home unless you’re very skilled. Natural nails can’t take the filing on the side that it needs or it will crack and break."

A good place to start when attempting to recreate this shape is by simply looking for a nail technician that's able to execute it correctly. Gerstein emphasizes that finding the right manicurist is crucial because your natural nails can’t support the length and shape of coffin nails without the addition of acrylic or gel—and, unless you're a professional, it's not recommended to DIY this at home.

What colors or designs are best on coffin nails?

Here's the good news: While some nail designs are practically made to compliment specific nail shapes, and the good thing about coffin nails is that how you design them all comes down to personal preference. The world of nail designs is basically your oyster, so you can have as much fun as you want with these.

Looking for inspo? Keep reading for some must-try coffin nail designs (and some surprising colors) to bring to your nail tech at your next appointment.

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1 80's Swirl Coffin Nails

Embrace the 80's theme with a subtle base color layered with bright streaks.

2 Ombré V-Tip Coffin Nails

Mix and match ombre and V shaped tips for those days when you can't decide.

3 Abstract Coffin Nails

Ask for a softer blend of colors rather than strong line-work for a smooth abstract finish.

4 Confetti Coffin Nails

If you have a celebration coming up (especially a birthday), confetti nails can make for a simple yet playful look.

5 Geometric Coffin Nails

Take color blocking to the next level by using various patterns and shapes.

6 Marble Coffin Nails

A marble nail will give you just the right hints of color while adding the illusion of texture.

7 Chrome Coffin Nails

If you're looking for something with a bit more edge, try chrome nails for a mirrored effect.

8 Checkerboard Coffin Nails

Create an optical illusion with checkered nails.

9 Bedazzled Coffin Nails

Use small jewels to add to the glamour.

10 Abstract Tip Coffin Nails

Turn your tips into a work of art.

11 Multi-Textured Coffin Nails

You can never go wrong with an all-black look. Take it to the next level by playing with different textures and designs on each nail.

12 White Marble Coffin Nails

The fading glitter gives the illusion of marble underneath the white ombre. It's the perfect look for prom or a wedding.

13 Multi-Colored Flame Coffin Nails

This design and color palette are perfect for summer.

14 Portrait Coffin Nails

Think heavenly bodies but in nail form.

15 Funky Printed Coffin Nails

Get different artwork on each nail using a set color palette to achieve this funky look.

16 Complimentary Colored Coffin Nails

Blue and orange are complimentary colors, so feel free to recreate this with any other perfect pairing.

17 Pastel Coffin Nails

You can never go wrong with a subtle pastel ombré, especially for spring.

18 Floral Coffin Nails

Take a vibrant color like this bright orange and either attach or paint on flowers to make them pop even more. Plus, the matte gives them a clean finish.

19 Multi-Print Coffin Nails

Glossy nails with different prints regardless of the color scheme is always a good option.

20 Cinderella-Themed Coffin Nails

Channel your inner Cinderella with these sky blue glossy nails. Throw in the occasional clear nail with blue streaks for a true glass slipper moment.

21 Dalmatian Coffin Nails

Even Cruella would adore these nails.

22 Gold Foil Coffin Nails

Elevate your manicure by adding gold foil along the outer edges of your v-tips.

23 Boho Coffin Nails

Go for something more detail oriented with these boho fruit designs.

24 Neon Coffin Nails

Neon tends to be one of the go-to trends for coffin nails, so feel free to incorporate it however you'd like.

25 Wavy Tip Coffin Nails

Why chose between white or black nails when you can have a bit of both?

26 Yin-Yang Coffin Nails

This design can go great with anything from neutral tones to pastels and even bright neons.

27 Matte Ombré Coffin Nails

Earthy tones are less common with this nail type, but there are plenty of ways to make them interesting.

28 Swirly French Coffin Nails

Pick a color and explore it's different shades to recreate these French swirl tips.

29 Bold Red Coffin Nails

While we all love a bold red nail, you can always make small changes like adding gold or only painting half the nail to maintain the simplicity.

30 Rose Quartz Coffin Nails

Take the definition of self-love to up a notch by pulling inspo from rose quartz.

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