The Mismatched Nail Trend That's Sweeping Instagram

Photographed By Tegan Davis.
In middle school, my father would leave Post-It notes in my lunch box with a cliché (and if I was really lucky, a quote) about being myself. Most would encourage me to be a leader, dance to the beat of my own drum, and — remember! — "be yourself; everyone else is already taken." As a 12-year-old, this all made me blush with embarrassment, but at 24, I get it — and embracing your unique perspective goes beyond social awareness. You could apply my father's sage, albeit cheesy parental advice to beauty trends, too.
These days, the lipstick you wear, the haircut you get, and the style in which you wear it are basically an act of rebellion. And while some beauty choices, like Lipslut's F*ck Trump initiative, are more outwardly so than others, the beauty industry knows how to help you stand out while sending a message in all the right ways. If you're looking for a more subtle trend that celebrates individuality while looking surprisingly chic and not one thing about it fits in, consider mismatched nails.
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We don't know exactly why it's been the social standard to match your nail polish, but that's the way it's been for as long as we can remember. Now, status quo be damned, Instagram is all over mismatched nail polish, whether that's alternating colours on every finger or Technicolor nail art — either way, it's good and perfect for fall. Our favourite inspo looks, ahead.
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In addition to the unique mismatched nail trend, muted polishes are also beginning to eclipse bolder, electric sister shades — and we're not mad about it.
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Or swap out your pastels for earth tones that are warm, rich, and on-brand for the approaching season.
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For a minimal take on the trend, keep the colour mismatched, but pair it with some negative space.
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Why stop at alternating just five shades? Go for a full ten-finger rainbow the next time you're at the salon and can't decide on red, orange, yellow, green, blue, or purple...
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The more jelly nail colours, the better.
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Sometimes, you can't pick a favorite colour. In that case, you just have to choose them all — even if they don't match one bit.
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If nail art is more your thing, this trend is calling your name. Take those French tips to a whole new level with several different neon polishes.
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A smorgasbord of colour, these rainbow ombré nails aren't as overwhelming as you'd think — although they're certainly not subtle.
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These half-dipped tips will grow out flawlessly since there is negative space near the cuticle. That means you can stretch the time between mani appointments, spending less time and money at the salon.
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Our colour combination of choice? This punchy palette of reds and oranges.
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Although this trend only recently made itself known on Instagram, it's safe to say that Gigi Hadid and her nail artist Mei Kawajiri were two of the first to catch on.
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