A Touch of Glamour with the Short French Manicure

I remember my first French Manicure. I had short nails and doubted I’d like them pink and white. I’d seen the medium and long versions and they just appeared much more glamorous. I guessed mine would be boring, but I wasn’t sure, so I gave it a shot. I used sticker guides, painting about 1/8″ of bright white polish at the tips. My first reaction was they were okay, but gradually over the next few days I started to like them. They give a little pop to your fingers without being overly dramatic. They catch your attention when you’re working and not looking at them. I concluded you really don’t need a lot of paint to brighten up your day.

Sarah Palin’s nails


Who wears a French Manicure while hunting? A rogue from Alaska, of course. It’s an easy way to add a touch of glamour in the middle of nowhere, miles from civilization. Sarah Palin is holding binoculars while scoping out an unsuspecting caribou in the distance. You may not have noticed her nails during the many months she was campaigning, but couldn’t miss them in the HD closeups for her TV show. Somebody said that Sarah has surprisingly small hands, and she does, but she also has beautiful fingernails. She uses guides and paints them herself in classic fashion. These shots demonstrate an elegant and conservative manicure. The length is just beyond her fingertips; the shape is round; and the amount of white enamel is minimal.


Sarah stares down the barrel of a high-powered long-range rifle


Aboard a small plane and ready to fly back home. Pictures from Sarah Palin’s Alaska (Courtesy TLC)

You don’t have to be a Beverly Hills diva or a glamour goddess to have a short French manicure. Outdoorsy women and famous athletes have this traditional style, too. It’s not just for the prissy and protected who are afraid to get their hands dirty; it’s good for any gal from the mom to the model. It’s an easy step up from slightly dull color. It is not necessarily dressy, simply clean and above average quality.

Making white look right


Short acrylics are widely available for those who love perfection. The girl holding the bright red gift box has uniformly shaped square tips; they have more white than you’d expect, and perhaps too much. My banker had this exact same style just a little shorter; it looked very professional. Because of the size and fit you couldn’t really tell they were acrylics. The rule of thumb for the smiles is based on proportion. The shorter the nail, the smaller the smile. But you can break the rules with any shape and size you fancy.


At the other end of the spectrum, instead of short beds and long tips, some girls prefer discretion where there are long beds and short tips. These ones are very thin; if you are patient and have a steady hand, you can take this idea even further towards minimalism so they are barely noticeable. The subtle style is nice but it is more likely to get chipped, and it is more difficult to make each nail identical. One benefit, however, is they can make your fingers look longer.

The bottom line with the short French manicure is it’s good for anyone at any time.

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