Picking your pedi polish has never been easier.

By Melanie Rud
June 04, 2019
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Essie

‘Tis the season for cute sandals…and regular pedicures. And no matter if you’re hitting the nail salon or taking the DIY route, choosing the exact right nail polish color can be challenging. (#Firstworldproblem, but still.) If you’re looking for some shade selection direction, celebrity manicurist Michelle Saunders James shares her 10 favorite Essie nail polish colors, with hues ranging from nude to neon, and everything in between. Sun’s out, toes out.

Essie

1
Essie Turquoise & Caicos

Heading out of town for an exotic getaway? Swipe on this gorgeous blue-green hue. “A true vacation color, it’s a perfect match for the see-through blue waters of a tropical getaway,” says James.

To buy: $9; amazon.com.

Essie

2
Essie Good as Gold

Think of metallics as upgraded neutrals: They go with everything but have a little bit more pop. This gilded shade is like a foolproof accessory that works with every outfit, James says.

To buy: $9; target.com.

Essie

3
Essie Strike a Rose

Is there anything more summery than a bright pedicure? When you want to go bright bright, James recommends this show-stopper, a vibrant neon pink, from Essie’s new summer collection.

To buy: $9; ulta.com.

Essie

4
Essie Topless & Barefoot

An opaque cream—the perfect nude/pink/beige hybrid—James compares this color to an iced latte. It’s also surprisingly flattering on all skin tones.

To buy: $9; target.com.

Essie

5
Essie Wild Nude

“This is the type of shade that makes people stop and ask, ‘What color is that? It’s the perfect nude I’ve been searching for,’” says James. Enough said.

To buy: $9; amazon.com.

Essie

6
Essie Guilty Pleasures

According to James, a warm coral is a summer pedicure must-have. Try her go-to from Essie, which has the ideal mix of pink and red undertones and is especially pretty against sun-kissed skin.

To buy: $9; amazon.com.

Essie

7
Essie All Access Pass

Anything and everything 90s is trending in the beauty world, which is why blue nail polish is back in a big way. This shade has that retro feel, notes James, but because it’s a deeper indigo, it still feels chic and modern.

To buy: $9; amazon.com.

Essie

8
Essie Go Ginza

A cool-toned lavender like this one is a foolproof pick for both spring and summer, says James. If you’re the type who likes to match your mani and pedi, you’ll be happy to know that this looks equally pretty painted on tips or toes.

To buy: $9; amazon.com.

Essie

9
Essie Berry Naughty

There’s nothing more sophisticated than a rich red pedicure. “A classic year-round, this deep red is a top request from my clients,” James says.

To buy: $9; amazon.com.

Essie

10
Essie Limo Scene

If you prefer a more minimalistic look, James suggests this neutral shade. It makes for a clean and barely-there polished pedi that never goes out of style.

To buy: $9; amazon.com.

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