18 Statement-Making Red Nail Colors to Elevate Your Summer Manicure

18 Statement-Making Red Nail Colors to Elevate Your Summer Manicure featured image
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Red nails are undisputedly classic, not to mention versatile; for every season of nail trends you’ll find shades of red that rise to the occasion. But for the summer, there was no other nail polish more loved than essie’s legendary Clambake. It was the perfect summer red; a shade reminiscent of the best of the season—ripe tomatoes, lobsters and checkered tablecloths—that also especially flattered sun-kissed skin. Much to my (and millions of others) heartbreak (and fury) the fiery, reddish-orange polish was officially discontinued, and I’ve been on the hunt for a new summer favorite ever since.

Then something surprising happened. Without the monopoly Clambake had over my summer manicures, I realized I’d been missing out on some seriously stunning red nail colors. Call it tomato, coral, blood orange or Aperol-inspired, bold, bright, warm reds are everywhere.


Polishing my nails in real time. Reds always have the best formulas! ❤️❤️‍🔥 #nails #diynails #nailinspo #nailtutorial red nails nail polish how to paint your nails how to apply nail polish

♬ Glory Box – Portishead

To see the red nail polishes that’ll keep the summery vibes going all year round, keep reading.

Orange-Tinted Reds

1 / 7

CHANEL Le Vernis Incendiaire ($32)

For a traditional, non-gel nail formula that’s super glossy, super shiny and a perfect mix of red-orange and cherry, say hello to CHANEL’s Incendiaire. When I think of chic, timeless nail colors this is the first that comes to mind.

chanel le vernis nail polish incendiaire
2 / 7

Lights Lacquer Aperol Spritz, Anyone? ($13)

It’s an Aperol Spritz summer and Lights Lacquer is here to keep the party going. The eqonomoyous nail color has a subtle shimmer with a jelly-like sheer finish that’s almost like being in the Mediterranean yourself.

lights lacquer aperol spritz nail polish
3 / 7

Jin Soon Pop Orange ($18)

Described as “energetic and eccentric,” Jin Soon’s creamy red-orange nail color packs a punch. This one will look especially great on (safely) tanned skin.

jinsoon pop orange nail polish
4 / 7

Dazzle Dry Red Hot Chili ($22)

Customers say Dazzle Dry’s spicy shade is the “most flattering” and a “favorite to wear all year round.”

dazzle dry nail polish in red hot chili
5 / 7

Olive & June Long Lasting Nail Polish in Lava ($9)

As the aforementioned TikToker raves, Lava is the “most gorgeous” orangey-red. A shade in Olive & June’s Long Lasting line, the brand promises color will maintain its plump, gel-like finish for up to 10 days.

olive and june nail polish in lava
6 / 7

Essie Start Signs Only ($10)

This pretty coral hue was a part of Essie’s Push Play Summer 2023 collection. It’s no longer available on the brand’s site, but you can still get it on on Amazon.

7 / 7

OPI Cajun Shrimp ($12)

A true legend. The reddish-coral hue is so good, it’s the polish I saw most on TikTok. Get the traditional nail lacquer online, but the same shade in gel-form is only available at select salons.

Cherry Reds

1 / 4

Addiction Tokyo The Nail Polish in Red Dress ($19)

Red Dress’ timeless cherry hue will make you feel elevated, elegant and confident while you’re wearing it.

addiction tokyo cherry red
2 / 4

Nailberry Cherry Chérie ($21)

Wear this “upbeat” glossy shade of cherry red and orange wherever you go and it’ll upgrade your whole look.

nailberry cherry nail polish
3 / 4

Le Mini Macaron Gel Polish in Cherry Red ($13)

A radiant red gel nail polish that’s a 3-in-1 base coat, color and top coat? Sign us up. Two swipes, a 30-second cure and you’re out the door with a brilliant at-home manicure.

le mini macaron gel polish cherry
4 / 4

Gelcare Cherry Jello ($20)

Another gel option is is this juicy shade that’s inspired by, you guessed it, cherry Jell-O. The translucent jelly formula builds from a subtle orangey-pink to a more vibrant red with each additional coat. (They’re all super flattering.)

gelcare Cherry Jello nail polish

Poppy Reds

1 / 3

Manucurist Green Nail Polish in Poppy Red ($14)

For a color that skews a bit more red than orange, Poppy Red by clean nail brand Manucurist may be just the thing. The formula is a part of the brand’s Green line, which is plant-based and vegan, lasts up to seven days and can be removed without acetone.

2 / 3

Circque Colors Poppy Jelly ($12.50)

The jelly sandals of my 90’s youth has come for my nail polishes and, frankly, I am here for it. Also like the sandals, jelly formulas, like this bright, warm red, deliver a sheer a hint of color that still allows your natural nails to shine through.

Hand with nails painted in Cirque Colors Poppy Jelly shade
3 / 3

Hermès Nail Polish in Rouge Amazone ($57)

Leave it to Hermès to have the most epic backstory for their nail polish colors. According to the brand, Rouge Amazone, a warm-toned brick red, is inspired by the ceremonial harnesses created by Hermès in 1894 for the white horses of the Chinese Empress Cixi.

hermes les mains hermes nail polish rouge amazone

Bright Classics

1 / 4

Gelcare Rosso Corsa ($20)

Speaking of backstories, Rosso Corsa, a “race car red” gel polish, was inspired by the Italian race cars of the 1920s that were synonymous with this iconic color.

gelcare rosso corsa
2 / 4

Londontown Lakur Enhanced Color in Londoner Love ($16)

Londontown declares Londoner Love, a “true, vibrant red crème,” as essential to one’s wardrobe as your favorite LBD.

Londontown Lakur Nail Polish in Londoner Love
3 / 4

Olive & June Long Lasting Polish in Candy Dipped ($9)

Candied apples meets nail polish in this jelly-like long-lasting formula that delivers a high-shine, plump finish.

4 / 4

Zoya Frankie ($12)

Zoya’s shade of July 2024 takes the “predictable reds of yesterday” and turns it on its head. The result is a mouthwatering “neon hot watermelon red” that’s “basically summer bottled up in a single swipe.”

ZOYA nail polish in Frankie

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