Perfectly Polished

Keep your fingers on the pulse with an outside-the-box wedding-day manicure.


photograph by david butler


Turn the traditional wedding manicure on its head with a reverse French in funky hues. “Recently, metallic nails and texture have been popular,” says G2o spa and nail director Christine Haddad. “The muted pink (OPI ‘I Love Applause’) gives a modern edge to a class look, and the silver (OPI ‘Push and Shove’) creates a standout contrast.”

$37, G20 Spa + Salon.


For the bride-to-be with a creative flair, Wet Paint Nail Spa owner Michelle Phoenix suggests a manicure showcasing shimmering Recollections microbeads. The looks starts with one coat of white (Nubar “French White Tip”) and one coat of pearly white (Zoya “Ginessa”) before the pearls are applied.

$45 (for beads on all nails), Wet Paint Nail Spa.


Delicate lace is timeless, for gowns and nails alike. Nancy Le, lead nail technician at Bliss, offers a signature bridal manicure that calls for nude polish (OPI “My Very First Knockwurst”) under lace fabric, which is applied with tweezers and nail glue and secured with a clear topcoat.

Starting at $35, Bliss Spa Boston.


Featuring sheer white polish (Essie “Allure”) accented by silver and gold glitter, Bella Santé’s “snowflake” manicure embraces the whimsy of a winter wedding. “There is just enough sparkle to stand out, but not so much that it becomes the focal point of the look,” says Wellesley spa director Caroline Bradford.

$40, Bella Santé Day Spa.


Flawless fingers take time. Start prepping now with these dos and don’ts from local nail experts.


Do schedule a nail appointment several months prior to the wedding, and get on a regular manicure schedule
—Christine Haddad, G20 Spa + Salon

Do keep the nail bed hydrated by using cuticle oil (such as CND Solar Oil) daily.
— C.H.

Do let your nails grow as the big day approaches, even if you usually keep them short. Your technician will find the best shape for the look you want.
— C.H.

Do ask your technician for a bottle of touchup polish to repair any nicks after you leave the salon.
— Michelle Phoenix, Wet Paint Nail Spa

Do apply a thin layer of topcoat two days after your manicure to prevent chipping
— Nancy Le, Bliss Spa Boston


Don’t pick things up with your nails. Make a conscious effort to use finger tips instead
— N.L.

Don’t be scared off by bling or glitter. It’s possible to add a little festivity to your nails without going overboard.
— M.P.

Don’t feel obligated to get a classic French or clear manicure. It’s your day; do whatever you like.
— M.P.

  • Mary Ann Sintich

    This article gives me great ideas for my nails for my wedding. Never even thought of anything other than the typical French manicure. Especially like the lace overlay idea. Thanks for sharing.