15 Pretty Pearl Nail Ideas to Elevate Your Manicure

15 Pretty Pearl Nail Ideas to Elevate Your Manicure


PUBLISHED ON 08/15/23 09:44AM by Byrdie

From the coquette aesthetic to the rise of mermaidcore, pearls are having a major resurgence this year in a myriad of ways. We're all embracing a bit more decadence in our everyday style, be it through unapologetically adorned hair accessories, over-the-top jewelry, or mesmerizing manicures. The best part about pearlcore nails is that there are countless ways to do them—get a chrome mani in a pearlescent shade for a minimalist feel, or deck your nails to the nines in 3D pearls and gems to really make a statement. Ahead, see 15 stunning pearlcore nail ideas to get you started on jumping on the trend.

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Pearl-Adorned French

Glossy French manicure with pearl accents


If you love a twist on a French mani, this simple yet elevated look has major range. Wear it for your next beach day, brunch, or even something as elegant as sipping tea with Queen Charlotte (Bridgerton fans can dream). To achieve this look, start with a simple French manicure, then finish it off with small pearls distributed around the full nail.

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Stiletto French with Pearls

Long, pointy French manicure with pearl accents near cuticles


One way to make a simple French manicure more elaborate is by getting it in a pointy, extended shape. This one step immediately draws attention to your hands, but turning this mani into pearlcore nails via a cuticle accent adds a real "wow" factor.

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Mother of Pearl Mani

Manicure with chrome tip and 3D pearl accents in various sizes


Iridescent shimmer, french tip, and 3D pearls make this mermaid nail look the perfect summer set. To create it, nail artist Betina Goldstein used CND World's No-Wipe Top Coat and Pearl Obsession powder—both are designed for salon use, so if you're going the DIY route, try a shimmering finish like Londontown's Kur Diamond Shine ($20) or seal in a dusting of eyeshadow with your favorite clear top coat.

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Tinted Pearl Shimmer

Manicure with pearlescent polish with purple and gold undertones


Another way of embodying pearlcore nails is this beautiful two-tone iridescent shimmer. This one uses Cirque Colors' Soleil ($15) and Serenity ($15)—two pearlescent polishes with respective pink and green shimmers—to achieve the mesmerizing look.

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Micro-Studded Shimmer

Sydney Sweeney's hand with pearlescent purple shimmer nail polish, pearl studs, and rhinestones


If you want to go all out with your pearlcore nails, this one's for you. Nail artist Amy Le created this stunning mani for Sydney Sweeney's 2022 Met Gala look, and the result is an absolute dream. The design features tiny rhinestones as well as small pearls to produce a real work of art. Not only does this mani have pearl and rhinestone details, but the base is pink with a glitter chrome finish.

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Blushing Pearls

Blush manicure with pearlescent white base, pink center, and rhinestone accents


You can achieve two trends in one with this blush-worthy mani: aura nails and pearl-core. This super trendy and adorable look is perfect for day-to-night looks and adds the perfect pop of color to your everyday mani.

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Pearlescent Vanilla Chrome

Ivory manicure with pearlescent chrome finish


This pearlescent take on the vanilla chrome manicure is the perfect way to take a simple mani to the next level. Instead of adding pearl accents, your nails literally look like pearls. Just choose a neutral base color and add chrome on top to achieve this dreamy look.

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Iridescent Gold Mermaid

Iridescent gold oyster-inspired manicure with pearl details


If you can't get enough mermaid vibes these days (and we totally relate), become the most luxurious version of Ariel possible with a gilded take on oyster nails. We love the iridescent finish here, and the pearl accents really pull the look together.

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3D Pearlcore Swirl

Pearlescent pink manicure with 3D swirl designs and heart accents


A special take on the pearlcore nail trend is this 3D abstract look. Walk into any room with this mesmerizing mani and we guarantee all eyes will be on you. Nail artist Jeanette Flores used Clear Pink 441 ($9) and Pearl Chrome Effect from DND Gel, gluing it all together using the brand's Rhinestone Adhesive Gel. A complex mani like this requires a trip to your manicurist, but we think it's worth the splurge for results like this.

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Less Is More

Pearlescent glazed chrome white manicure


Similar to the pearl-adorned, this manicure achieves pearlcore without much effort. It's proof that with the right white, ivory, or pastel base, the ever-viral glazed donut nails can take on an incredibly pearlescent quality. Start with your base color of choice, then finish with a shimmering or iridescent top coat for a mani that glistens just like your favorite pearls.

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Barbie-Approved Bow

Iridescent pink manicure on Ariana Greenblatt with pearl bow accent


Nail artist Zola Ganzorigt created a stunning Barbie press look on Ariana Greenblatt with this shimmering pink mani featuring a pearlcore bow accent. We're swooning over this dainty look that's perfect for any bridal occasion (as well as any weekend plans, if you ask us). To achieve it, apply a coat of OPI's Natural Nail Base Coat ($10), then two coats of the brand's Nail Lacquer (from the Barbie collab, no less!) in shade Best Day Ever ($11) and finish off with the OPI Top Coat ($10). Lastly, glue on the pearl bow for the sweetest finishing touch.

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Oyster Vibes

French manicure with deep nude base and swirl designs


These nails look like they emerged directly from the sea, fresh out of an oyster. Bring this gorgeous manicure to life by starting with a French manicure with a rich nude base, then add in abstract lines with a fine white brush to create a shell-like look. Finish off the look with a bold pearl glued to the base of your nail (or some creative ring placement, as pictured here).

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Seaside Treasure

Manicure with French tips and assorted pearl, gem, and silver starfish accents


Another two-in-one trend, this look achieves pearlcore and mermaidcore in one stunning look. If you could dip your fingers in the ocean and pull them out with a fresh, ultra-luxe manicure, this is exactly what we would imagine.

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Metallic Pearl

Chrome French manicure with glossy finish and micro-pearl accents


Take your chrome French mani into pearlcore territory by pairing iridescent metallic tips with 3D micro-pearl accents. This look balances simple elegance and bold glamour with just a couple key choices, and we couldn't love it more.

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Pearls Galore

Manicure covered in pearl and iridescent gem stud accents


Go literal with your pearlcore mani by completely covering your nails in 3D pearls of various shapes and sizes. This one also includes iridescent gems around the border for a luxurious framed effect.

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