As black liner is to a makeup arsenal and an "LBD" is to a functional wardrobe, some nail lacquers are essential to a polish collection. From the wildly bold to the subtle head turners, no collection is complete without the nail polish colors every mani lover should own.
As any nail polish addict knows, there's no such thing as having too many colors. Every hue imaginable has been formulated into a nail lacquer waiting to spice up your fingertips. You can switch from jet black to metallic pink to matte blue at the drop of a hat, even sporting them all in the same week if that's your M.O. But no matter how much your style changes, there are certain shades polish junkies always come back to. Deep hues characterize cold weather seasons, and you can always spot them on any mani lover. Spring and blush shades go hand in hand. And you just can't have summer time without vibrant, tropical hues.
Then there are the year-round staples worth breaking out at any given moment. Of all the gorgeous options on the market, these 35 colors are the reliable stunners that always land a ton of compliments.
1OPI "Big Apple Red"
The one shade worth having if nothing else, a true red is a versatile statement maker.
2Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics "Feathered"
Perfect for adding teeny designs or coating the entire nail in a blank canvas, pure white works for any time of the year.
The ideal shade for vacay season, a bright coral looks so yummy on well groomed nails.
6OPI "Bubble Bath"
I'm known by the technicians at my local salon as the girl who loves pointy, sparkly nails, so I'm clearly addicted to festive shades. But the one color I always come back to is this barely there, cult-favorite pink, a shade that looks heavenly on all skin tones.
7CND "Black Pool"
Never be afraid to break out jet black polish at any given time of the year. It's just as classic as a power red.
Just as neutral as beige, but not quite as lackluster as grey, greige is an ideal subtle shade.
9Essie "No Place Like Chrome"
Any chrome hue will give your nails plenty of flare, and silver is always the way to go.
10OPI "Suzi - The First Lady Of Nails"
There's just something about olive green that looks super chic.
11Pacifica "Swamp Thing"
Calling all mermaid lovers! An iridescent turquoise with hints of purple and green is an aquatic dream.
12CND "Brass Button"
A holiday season essential, metallic gold is always a bonafide show stopper.
13Zapora "Hot Koko"
15OPI "Never A Dulles Moment"
You can never go wrong mustard yellow, a shade that competes with the prettiest summer hues and go-to burnt fall polishes.
16Nails Inc. "Bruton Mews"
Finished with a matte top coat, forest green is simply stunning.
17China Glaze "Shocking Pink"
A neon pink always captivates.
18Sally Hansen "Wine Not"
Just as essential as true red, a cranberry hue is one of those classic lacquers that never fails.
19CND "Untitled Bronze"
So luxe and bold, rose gold just works on so many levels.
20OPI "Is That A Spear In Your Pocket"
How can you not think of an island getaway with a tropical teal adorning your little pretties?
22Butter London "Toff"
Somewhat of a neutral with a twist, dusty mauve looks absolutely gorgeous against any complexion.
23Ruby Wing "Crowd Surf"
Having a special effects nail lacquer is a must, so a color-changing polish will do the trick.
24Butter London "HRH"
The epitome of majesty, royal purple surely turns heads.
25Palate Polish "Black Pepper"
Gunmetal grey is grungy, edgy, and chic all at the same time.
26Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics "Black Dahlia"
Yet another fall staple, blackened red and purple hues always have major appeal.
You're guaranteed to stare at your nails incessantly if you include a copper polish in your stash.
28Zoya "Nude Perfector"
There's no going wrong with your go-to nude, whether your complexion warrants a pale pink or a deep espresso shade.
29Essie "Very Structured"
"Very Structured" Nail Lacquer, $9, essie
Burnt orange will always win, hands down!
30China Glaze "Sun Of A Peach"
Peach is seriously becoming the new millennial pink, so it's a definite must-have.
31Morgan Taylor "P.S. I love You"
It may be a spring essential, but a soft lilac is always worth painting on your pointers.
A true celebration shade, champagne makes any mani look elegant.
33OPI "Berlin There Done That"
One of those neutrals that you just can't escape, taupe is a shade you definitely need.
Oh so summery and fun is a bright, citrus orange.
35Deborah Lippmann "I Know What Boys Like"
Whether pastel or deep hued, periwinkle is that brilliant cross between blue and violet that your nails cannot live without.
There's nothing wrong with hoarding as many polishes as you can get your hands on, but before going crazy, consider including these fundamental shades in your stash first. They'll forever do your nails justice.