These Simple Nail Polish Shades Go With Absolutely Everything

Shannon Lawlor

Settling on the perfect nail polish colour can be tricky business. With what feels like millions of different shades to choose from, no beauty product has the ability to generate a spiral of indecisiveness quite like nail varnish. Therefore, finding your go-to, signature nail shade can make all of the difference and help to eliminate any confusion.

So what exactly makes a great signature polish? Well, to start with, it’s something that goes with just about any outfit. It’s also low maintenance and long-lasting. If you’re in a bit of a nail varnish rut and fancy experimenting with some new formulas and shades, keep scrolling for the perfect staple nail polishes—whatever your taste.

Classic Red

Red is just about the most classic nail polish shade out there. It’s absolutely timeless. While we totally understand that the boldness of a bright red isn’t for everyone, the new take on classic red polish is bright and poppy as opposed to flat and vampy. Glossy, red nails have never looked so cool.

Shop Red Nail Varnish

Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in Riuge Essentiel (£22)

Barry M Gelly High Shine Nail Paint in Red (£4)

OPI Infinite Shine Nail Polish in Big Red Apple (£14)


Probably one of the more fashionable shades on the list, brown nails are having a real moment. While warm, chocolatey shades look great with added shine, we also love cooler, lighter tones with a matte finish. We think brown is a real rising star in the nail polish world.

Shop Brown Nail Varnish

ORLY The New Neutral Collection Nail Varnish in Mauvelous (£11)

Sally Hansen Color Therapy Nail Polish (£9)

Nailberry L'Oxygene Nail Lacquer Taupe La (£15)

Bare but Polished

When we first learned of the rumour that the Royals (including the Queen of England herself) regard Essie’s Ballet Slippers as their go-to nail varnish shade, we thought it’s about time we trialled a bare-looking mani for ourselves. Frankly, we’re never looking back. It looks chic and polished without drawing attention. For manicures where you simply don’t know where to start, one of these shades should do the trick.

Shop Bare Nail Varnish

Essie Nail Colour 6 Ballet Slippers Nail Polish (£8)

Smith & Cult Nail Polish in The Graduate (£19)

Chanel Le Vernis Longwear Nail Colour in Organdi (£22)


Where brick reds and oranges were once reserved solely for the autumn months, now they work just as well all year round. The key to making sure nails look their chicest when opting for a brick-like hue is to keep the shine level up high with a gel topcoat.

Shop Brick Nail Varnish

Dior Vernis Couture Colour Gel Shine Long Wear Nail Lacquer in Massai (£22)

Nails Inc. Nailpure Fashion Fix in Model Behaviour (£15)

Essie 426 Playing Koi Nail Polish (£8)


We can’t help but feel as though berry shades have fallen off the hit list as of late, and we’re calling out for them to come back. From fun raspberries to deep, dark currants, there’s a berry hue for just about every occasion.

Shop Berry Nail Varnish

Nails Inc. Kensington High Street Gel Effect Nail Varnish (£15)

Givenchy Le Vernis Nail Polish in No8 (£20)

OPI Infinite Shine Nail Polish in Miami Beet (£14)


Out of all of the usual go-to shades, we must admit that beige is one of the hardest ones to really nail (pardon the pun). While it looks absolutely wonderful when it’s spot on, finding a shade that complements your skin tone without making your nails look sickly can be quite the challenge. As a rule, steer clear of yellow and green-toned nudes and stick to those with pink and brown undertones instead.

Shop Nude Nail Varnish

CND Vinylux Satin Pyjamas Nail Varnish (£12)

Mavala Mini Colour Nail Polish in Cream, 186 Sapporo (£5)

Yves Saint Laurent La Laque Couture Nail Lacquer in Beige Gallery (£22)

Up next, these affordable face masks are some of the best that money can buy.

This article originally appeared on Who What Wear

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