Nail Talk: Understanding the 9 Different Nail Shapes and Names

Both millennials and members of Generation Z are adopting the new fashion statement of having their nails sculpted and done up.

We see everything from natural and elegant forms in fashion heroines like Margot Robbie to crazy and sometimes insanely bizarre shapes, as seen in Cardi B. The fad became very popular quickly, and now there is a queue out the door at all the nail salons so everyone can get their manicure fix.

But what is it about getting your nails done that is so enjoyable? This is due to the wide variety of options available for nail shapes, colours, nail art, decorations, and even drilled-in jewellery in certain cases.

This list, however, is not about all the fashionable new methods to do your nails; rather, it focuses on the fundamental part of doing your nails, which is the form of your nails.

Different Types Of Nail Shapes

#1. Round nails

Round shapes are ideal for short nails since they are low-maintenance and seem basic but stylish. If you believe your fingers are too short or ‘chubby,’ round nails will appeal to you.

This is because they might make your nail bed seem longer, broader, and slenderer. People who are just starting and want their natural nails to grow healthy and strong often choose round shapes for their nail art.

#2. Ballerina (Coffin) nails

The ballerina form may be achieved with naturally long, strong nails and synthetic, artificial nails. The form, sometimes called coffin nails, is similar to stiletto nails but has a more accessible, squared-off tip. The term is derived from ballerina shoes or, for a more gothic feel, being formed like a coffin.

If you want to have long nails and are looking for a shape that stands out, this is the sort of shaped nail you should pick from the wide variety of shaped nail options.

#3. Rounded square nails

If square-shaped nails are too intense or serious for you, their rounded-off form may appeal to you. Your manicurist will round off the edges of a square shape for a softer finish, making it more appealing. Rounded square nails are also excellent for neutral, naked, and short manicures.

#4. Square nails

Square-shaped nails are a step above circular nails. A flattened top and straight edges on the sides define this shape. They are not as popular as the other entries on this list because the shape risks making your fingers look stumpy.

However, this shape will suit you if you have naturally short nails with narrow nail beds. The strong design also extends the life of your manicure since it is less prone to break or chip when fashioned in this manner.

#5. Squoval nails

As the name implies, Squoval nails are a hybrid of square and oval nail forms. It blends the fashionable length of oval nails with the curved edges of square forms but softens the look. This shape, also known as the soft square, is simple to maintain and flatters everyone.

#6. Oval nails

Among the various nail shapes and oval nails, Kylie Jenner’s go-to Insta-worthy manicure looks great on longer lengths. Compared to round and square shapes, they are slimmer and more feminine.

They have a special appearance; since the tip is soft and blunt, they might make your hands seem longer. Oval forms flatten broad nail beds and are popular for displaying nail art. 

#7. Stiletto nails

Stiletto nails are one of the most dramatic forms of nail shapes. Thus, we’re firmly in the OTT portion of the list. The stilettos design is created by elongating almond curves into a pointier, more dramatic tip.

Natural nails would never be able to keep such a form. Thus, this is an excellent alternative if you want enhancements or stick-on acrylics.

#8. Lipstick nails

The popularity of the lipstick nail form, with a highly specific and loyal fan following, demonstrates that even the most unusual shapes can find an audience among nail aficionados.

Although difficult to maintain and accomplish, lipstick forms might be useful as stick-on acrylics for special occasions. Because, let’s face it, you won’t be able to accomplish anything with your hands if you have that nail form!

#9. Almond nails

Almond-shaped nails are thinner and finish with a rounded tip, making them a prettier, shorter version of oval nails. It offers your hands an extended and thin formation.

To get these nails, you must have thin sides, a naturally wide base, and bring the tip to a peak – nearly in the shape of an almond.

The form is suitable for medium to long nails and has a slimming appearance. As cute as the form is, it might weaken your natural nails, so use caution. For increased strength, reinforce your nails using gel paint or acrylics.

What to Look for When Choosing a Nail Shape?

You are generally free to pick whatever nail form appeals to your style. You may sample each one if you have a daring and exploratory spirit. On the other hand, some forms could appear better in your hands and function better for you. You might keep returning to that option when you finally figure out its form.

When selecting the most flattering nail shape for your hands, there are a few things you should keep in mind, including the following:

Forms of the cuticle

When recommending the client’s nail shape, Nail Talks first look at the client’s nail bed and cuticle shape. It is one of the foremost things they consider.

If your cuticle form is rounder or you have thin nail beds, the optimal nail shape will likely be round, oval, or narrow. These nail beds are ideal for creating a square or squoval form, and they work especially well if your cuticle is broad.

The distance between your fingers.

The length of your fingers is another important factor to consider. If you have shorter fingers, forms like oval or almond fingernail shapes are often advised to help elongate your fingers and make them look longer and more slender. These shapes may be achieved by filing your nails into an oval or almond shape.

The ideal nail forms for long fingers are square or more distinctive shapes, such as a coffin or flare-shaped nails. Square nails are always a good choice. People who have long nails have more flexibility when it comes to nail shape.

Desired upkeep

Another significant consideration when selecting a nail form is how easy it would be to maintain it in good condition. The lengthier and more unusual forms need more maintenance than typical designs like round or square, which are considered the optimum shape for short nails due to their size and space requirements.


Last but not least, while picking the form of your nails, you should consider your aesthetic and how you live your life. If you are more traditional, you should avoid wild or severe forms. Cut your nails shorter if you work with your hands a lot. For a special occasion, use acrylic or gel extensions.

Nail trends

Despite this, it should be the last thing you think about. When choosing a nail shape, it is also helpful to look at what is popular to determine whether or not any new trends work for you or whether you want to hop on the trend.


There are so many different options; selecting the shape of your nails can be just as much fun as choosing the colour of your nail polish and the design of your nail art. Each form is distinctive and exudes a certain mood or atmosphere.

If you keep all these distinct factors in mind and are ready to try out a few different shapes, you will discover one that is just right for you. And above all else, make sure you don’t forget to have fun! Experimenting with different nail shapes and colours is a terrific way to show who you are, and the process should always be pleasurable.

Do you have a certain nail form that you like the most? Share your thoughts with us in the section below!