What Type of Nails Are There? A Guide to Nail Shapes & Styles

As we all know, nails are essential to our manicure look. They define our style and are the perfect accessory to complete an overall look. However, when it comes to nails, the shape and style can be overwhelming. The shape of your nail depends on your personal style and preferences. In this article, we will be discussing different nail shapes and styles.

What Are Nail Shapes?

The shape of your nail is the angle across the tip of your finger. The angle keeps your nail strong and sturdy, which helps to prevent it from breaking. The nail shape also depends on your finger shape and the length of your finger. Here are the different nail shapes:

Square Shape

The square nail shape is a classic shape for a reason. The shape is very versatile, allowing the nail to be dressed up or down for any occasion. The square shape features a flat top with sharp corners, creating a defined square shape. This look is perfect for those wanting to add lengthen to their fingers and portray a sophisticated appearance.

Oval Shape

The oval shape is another classic shape that is popular amongst many. The oval shape features rounded edges with a slight, tapered tip. This shape is perfect for those with shorter nails who want to create an illusion of longer fingers. If you are looking for an elegant and soft look, the oval shape is for you.

Squoval Shape

The squoval shape is a mix between the square and oval shape. This shape is more on the round side with a square base. Many prefer this shape as it is perfect for those who want to keep the classic square shape, but also wants to soften their edges to create a more elegant appearance.

Coffin Shape

The coffin shape is a popular shape to achieve a dramatic look. This shape features a long nail with a tapered tip similar to the shape of a coffin. While this shape is stunning, it is not for those who want to maintain their nails’ strength. The nails require strong extensions which can cause damage in the long run.

Stiletto Shape

The stiletto shape is a statement shape for the confident and bold. The shape features a long and tapered tip, similar to a stiletto. The shape adds elongation and a glamorous feel to the hands. This shape, like the coffin shape, requires extensions and high maintenance, which can cause damage in the long run.

What Nail Styles Are There?

Nail styles refer to the overall design on your nail. There are countless styles out there, ranging from simple to bold. Here are the most popular nail styles:

French Tip

The French tip is a classic design that most people love. The design features white polish on the tips of the nail, creating a natural appearance. However, the French tip can be customized to add some uniqueness to it.


Nude is a popular nail style for those who want to keep their nails simple yet chic. The look is clean and elegant, while also making the nails appear longer. Nude shades range from light to dark, making it the perfect choice for any skin tone or outfit.


The glitter nail style brings sparkle and glamour to the nails. Glitter comes in every color and adds texture and dimension to any nail design. It is perfect for nights out, weddings, or parties.


The metallic style is great for adding sophistication and glamour to your nails. The metallic look includes various shades of silver, gold, and other colors that have a metallic shine to them.


The matte style is a more modern design that trends nowadays. It is a simple style with a subtle twist. The nails are painted in the usual color, but with a matte finish creating a soft and elegant look.


Your style is unique to you, and your nails are an essential accessory to complete your overall look. The shape and style of your nails can define how you present yourself to the world. With so many different shapes and styles, it can be overwhelming. However, by keeping your lifestyle and preferences in mind, you can find the perfect shape and style that suits you best.

Common Questions and Answers

  • What nail shape is the strongest?
  • Ideally, the square shape is the strongest for natural nails since the nail grows straight out and the angles cut straight across. However, choosing the strongest nail shape ultimately depends on personal preference.

  • What should I consider when choosing a nail shape?
  • When choosing a nail shape, you should consider your lifestyle, nail length, and how often you plan to maintain them.

  • Can I wear multiple nail styles at once?
  • Yes, you can wear multiple nail styles at once, and many people choose to do so for more versatility.

  • What can I use to remove my nail polish?
  • You can use a nail polish remover to remove any nail polish. However, it is recommended to use an acetone-free remover that won’t damage your nails.


“French Manicure.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 15 Sept. 2021, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_mani.

“Nail (Anatomy).” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 15 Sept. 2021, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nail_(anatomy).

“Nail Art.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 15 Sept. 2021, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nail_art.

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