Long nails can be fun, but sometimes you need to use your hands to button your pants. Or text a plumber in less than five minutes. Luckily, there are tons of are tons of short nail designs that can give you a super glam manicure.
When you’re ready to cut the claws in favor of more functional fingertips, check out these amazing short nail designs for inspo. They’re short, sweet, and sometimes spicy! (We can’t keep our hands out of the sriracha.)
25 Short Nail Designs
1. Simple Dots
Turn this manicure into a new Rorschach test by asking people if these dots make them think of ice cream, flowers, or an abstract stop light. There are 2.5 right answers.
2. Eyes and Stars
With this nail design, it may be the only time you’ll say “hey buddy, my eyes are down here.”
3. Tortoise Shell
Sally’s out of the seashell business and moved into tortoise shells. Sure, it’s longer hours. But this pattern is adorable!
4. Cat Nails
5. Designer Logo
Chanel, Dolce & Gabbana, Louis Vuitton, Crocs…there are so many options with this neon nail idea!
6. 90s Nail Designs
The only thing missing here is one of those pointy S doodles we all drew on our Converse. Thankfully, so is the stench of permanent marker.
7. Star Nails
Take your nails out of this world with this celestial short nail design. It’ll only be slightly less expensive than becoming a stowaway on Bezos’s next flight.
8. Barbie Pink Nails
All you need to be a Barbie girl are these bright hot pink nails, a giant house, and your convertible to get to the salon. Thank goodness it has parking assist!
9. Retro Stripes
This mani is reminiscent of a 70s roller rink, but you don’t have to risk breaking your ankle to enjoy these groovy vibes. Or walking on a floor covered in soda.
We’re not saying these nails look better than any tie-dye shirt we made…but we don’t think brown splotches ever really caught on.
11. Night Sky Nails
We love a customizable minimalist design. Just make sure you don’t put Mercury in retrograde if you decide to add planets.
12. Mismatched Colors
Decisions are hard, which is why we love these multi-colored nails. And it’s why we keep letting people cut us in the ice cream line.
13. Bloody Nails
This subtle update to the classic French manicure says, “I listen to murder podcasts.” Or, “I get a lot of paper cuts.”
14. Nude Two Tone
We love a two-for-one deal! Or in this case…two-for-10? Look, each nail has two colors on it. We’ll let you do the math.
15. Red Negative Space
16. Mismatched Pink
If nail art was a thing in the early 2000s, this would totally be a look that Elle Woods rocked. It may have made the “bend and snap” scene in the nail salon a tad longer, but more Jennifer Coolidge is just what the world needs.
17. Groovy Florals
This nail art is giving us major Dazed and Confused vibes, and we think it looks “alright, alright, alright!”
18. Combination French and Reverse French
This nail art is the perfect combination of classic and trendy. Just like you were last year when Juicy Couture tracksuits came back into style for, like, a day.
19. Neon Details
Manicure chipped? Bored at your desk? Grab a highlighter to touch this art up between salon visits. Bonus points if it’s the kind that smells like cherries.
20. Spooky Halloween Nails
Stay in the spooky spirit all year long with these Halloween-inspired short nail designs. Because Casper gets really annoyed when we forget to restock his house with coffee after October. Not so friendly then…huh?
21. Dainty Heart Nails
Cats may have nine lives, but this dainty design gives you 10 hearts. We’re not totally sure how that works, but we bet it makes cardio classes a little easier.
22. Plaid Nail Art
Cher Horowitz would approve of these. As if you would get anything else at your next nail appointment.
23. Animal Print
Welcome to the jungle! Please tell us you brought extra water.
24. Butterfly Tips
Send a flirty message by fluttering these butterflies on your fingertips. It’ll drive your cat crazy.
25. Flower Nails
Planting a garden is beautiful, but this botanical design is way easier. And it doesn’t involve dirt? Or…it shouldn’t?