Italian Manicures Can Actually Make Your Nails Look Longer — Here's How

Making the most of manicures by incorporating them into your aesthetic has never been easier. With so many nail trends popping up on every corner, there's quite a treasure trove of choices. Whatever your vibe, you're guaranteed to find something you'd love to see on your fingertips.

Amidst all the manicure fads that focus on more elaborate designs and application techniques, old-fashioned nail polish might seem a bit underwhelming at first. Nonetheless, if you're into a simple polish look, worry not because the nail trend train isn't passing you by either.

The simple allure of nail polish is often overlooked, especially if you get your nails professionally done. When at the salon, go all out, right? Well, that's a big plus for the polishing route — you can do it yourself and won't need to pay for pricey designs or super-long nails that make it hard to type. Not only can you do your nails in the comfort of your own space, but you can make them look longer with just regular nail polish. Out of all the acrylic nail alternatives that you need to know about, the so-called Italian manicure is very accessible and one that everyone can do.

Visually lengthen your nails with the Italian manicure

If you want to lengthen your nails without doing too much work, all you need to know is how to apply nail polish the Italian way. The Italian manicure is just that — a nail polish application technique that will visually make your nails look longer. The goal is to create somewhat of an optical trick by narrowing your nail beds, as nail artist Hang Nguyen explains to InStyle. "This creates an illusion of a longer, narrower nail," she says.

According to celebrity manicurist Geraldine Holford, you'll want to focus on the middle part of the nail bed while polishing your nails. "Create a more linear shape by not painting right up to the sides of the nail. By leaving a little space at the sides, you'll create the appearance of thinner, longer nails," she tells Yahoo.

Any nail polish color works here, but if you have shorter nails, lighter colors will add extra length. "Much like wearing a nude pump elongates your legs, a nude polish elongates your nails," Holford says. If you're having trouble finding the right shade for your skin tone, making homemade nail polish is also an option!

The Italian manicure can be done at home

Going to the nail salon is always a possibility if you're not sure your hand is steady enough for a neat nail polish application. Most, if not all, nail artists should know how to achieve the elongating effect of an Italian manicure, but come prepared to explain it regardless.

If you're an avid DIY person when it comes to nails, this one should be easy for you. Start with clean, prepped nails and push your cuticles back (you can also use a cuticle remover). File your nails into an almond or oval shape as these options — rather than square — also make your nails look longer. Then, apply the polish up the middle of the nail, making sure not to go right up to the edge. Don't forget to avoid pushing the nail polish under your cuticle. All that's left to do afterward is add a layer of topcoat to make the manicure last longer. Make sure you're not doing anything else that might chip your freshly painted nails too soon, so consider ditching those nightly baths.

Incorporating the Italian manicure technique into your routine doesn't necessarily mean you have to ditch your other nail favorites. It can be done with gel nail polish just as well, and you can still rock nail art and elaborate designs on top if you'd like. So feel free to get creative!