I can't count the number of times I've tried on "nude" shoes, lipsticks, or lingerie that were meant for someone at least five skin tones lighter than me. Not all nudes are equal, and that goes for nail polish, too. Luckily, there are a lot more options in that department — which actually makes narrowing down the right one a bit of a challenge.
Manicurist Gina Viviano likes to take the "mannequin-hand" approach. "I choose the shade that blends in the most with the skin tone," says Viviano. "It feels a bit rudimentary, but there really isn't a shortcut to finding the best shade." She recommends holding up the bottle to the back of your hand before testing it on your nails.