Your Guide on How To Choose the Best Nail Shape for You (2021)

Your Guide on How To Choose the Best Nail Shape for You (2021)

You’ve probably seen images of perfectly shaped and polished nails in fashion magazines and wondered how to achieve the trendy look. Covet no longer; we will show you how to choose the best nail shape for that fabulous mani you love and crave.

What Nail Are the Different Types of Nail Shapes?

When it comes to having the perfect mani, your nail shape does matter. A nail shape has the ability to accentuate your hand shape in a flattering or not so flattering way. While there are many nail shapes to choose from, we will talk about some of the most popular shapes below. 

  • Almond: The almond shape is one of the most popular shapes RN. Almond-shaped nails resemble the shape of an almond. The almond has a wide base and a tapered free edge. It looks fabulous on those with short fingers because it has an elongating effect.
  • Oval: The oval shape is a medium to long shape with a semi-circle, egg-like free edge, and straight-lined sides. Oval-shaped nails look best on nails with some length to them. This shape has an elongating effect on the fingers, so it’s ideal for those with shorter digits.
  • Round: Round-shaped nails have a rounded, circular free edge. The round shape softens wide nail beds and elongates shorter fingers with long nails.
  • Square: Square-shaped nails have a squared-off, blunt free edge and straight sides. This shape is best created on medium to long-length nails. Square nails add the appearance of width to the nail bed, so this shape is ideal for those with narrow nail beds and long fingers.
  • Squoval: This is the easiest nail shape to maintain. Squoval nails are square in shape with rounded edges. This is the most natural nail shape so it looks great on all finger types.
  • Stiletto: Stiletto-shaped nails are long and have a dramatic pointy tip. This shape is generally created with acrylic or gel nail extensions. Stiletto-shaped nails are more difficult to maintain because their tip is pointed and they are prone to breakage.  
  • Coffin: The coffin shape—AKA ballerina—is a long nail shape with a tapered and flattened square tip. It resembles a ballerina’s pointed shoe. Coffin nails add elegance and a modern edge to a manicure and work best on longer acrylic and gel nail sets.

What Are the Different Types of Hand Shapes?

Knowing your hand shape will help you determine which nail shape you should choose. Here are the four basic hand shapes. Can you determine which one is yours? The answer lies within your own hands.

  • Grounded Hands: This handshape has shorter fingers and a broad palm. Almond and oval shapes work best for grounded hand types. Stick with shapes that will elongate your shorter fingers.
  • Piano Hands: Those with piano hands have short, broad palms and long fingers. Compliment your hands with coffin-shaped nails.
  • Hi-Five Hands: This shape is characterized by a long palm and short fingers. An oval-shaped nail set looks best for this handshape because it elongates the fingers and balances the palms.
  • Generous Hands: This handshape has long fingers and narrow, long palms. Choose square or squoval-shaped nails to flatter your hands. 

How To Choose the Best Nail Shape for Your Lifestyle

Your lifestyle is also a determining factor when it comes to nail shape. If you play a lot of sports or type a lot on a computer, then long nails probably won’t be the best fit for you. Here are the best and worst nail shapes for particular lifestyle activities.

  • Coffin Nails: An edgy nail shape that adds trendy style and elongates the fingers.
    Avoid if you play sports, do a lot of typing on the computer, play guitar, or handle packages or items a lot during the day.
  • Oval Nails: This shape is the least prone to breaking and adds length to the nails.
    Avoid…never! The oval shape is low-maintenance and easy to work with for everyone.
  • Almond Nails: Slenderize your fingers with a strong almond shape.
    Avoid if you open cans of soda or button up lots of clothing.
  • Stiletto Nails: The stiletto shape is fierce and elongates the fingers in the trendiest way possible. 
    Avoid if you wear contact lenses or use your hands as tools in any way. 
  • Square Nails: This shape is classy and works well on people who work with their hands a lot.
    Avoid if you have short fingers or are prone to nail-biting.
  • Squoval Nails: This shape looks great on everyone and never goes out of style. 
    Avoid if…never avoid this shape.
  • Round: This shape is the least likely to break out of all shapes.
    Avoid if you want nails to scratch your back because this shape won’t do it.

Other Things To Consider

Do you still have questions about how to find the right nail shape? We’ve gathered a little more info to help you in your nail shape journey. Here are a few additional quick tips that may help.  

How To Make Short Fingers Appear Longer

The best shape to elongate the appearance of shorter fingers is round-shaped nails. File your digits by following the natural curve of your nails. Make sure the free edge is rounded and symmetrical on each nail. Check symmetry by flipping your hand over and observing the curvature.

What Is a Good Nail Shape for Wide Nail Beds and Long Nails?

Believe it or not, the oval nail shape is popular on the runways because it elongates nails perfectly in length and width. To achieve the oval shape, file your nails straight down the side of each digit and slightly curve the free edge shape toward the center of the nail.

How To Lengthen and Slim Your Fingers

The almond shape both elongates the fingers, giving them a slimmer look, and slenderizes the sides. Create a peak at the free edge of your nails with the nail file by filing the sides and narrowing at the tip. This shape mimics the shape of an almond.

Which Shape Is the Most Low-Maintenance?

Squoval-shaped nails are the easiest to maintain because the shape is closest to how your nails grow naturally. Create the squoval by filing down the edges of the nails in a straight line. Flatten the free edge and slightly round the corners to soften the look.


There are many nail shapes to choose from, and now that you know the basics, selecting the right one should be a breeze. The perfect nail shape is just one file away!

Nailboo has the perfect lash set to go with your new nails. We carry highly pigmented dip nail powders, dip kits, and nail essentials. Feel great in your newly shaped nails by shopping Nailboo nail care items because choosing to look your best feels the best! 

Shop The Look

Nailboo has colors to make any nail shape look fantastic! Try these Nailboo Dip Powders for each of the following nail shapes:

  1. Nailboo Cashmere Cloud is edgy and elegant. It looks great on a coffin shape.
  2. Nailboo Almond Allure is a neutral shade that is versatile and flows with any nail style.
  3. Nailboo Date Night is a fierce red that wears well on the stiletto nail shape.

Shop all the on-trend pigmented Nailboo dip powders here.



How to Pick Nail Shapes 2021 - Round, Oval, Almond, Coffin Nails Guide | Harper’s Bazaar

10 Different Nail Shapes for Every Finger Type | Glamour

The Best Nail Shapes For Your Fingers | The Trend Spotter | Byrdie

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