You've heard of pre-nuptial hair and makeup trials, but do you need one for your manicure, too?

By Jenn Sinrich
June 08, 2020
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As any bride-to-be knows, pre-wedding hair and makeup trails, or appointments to try out potential wedding hairstyles and makeup looks, are important tasks on your to-do list. But those aren't the only trials you potentially need to schedule. Pre-wedding nail trials are catching on and becoming increasingly popular. As you could probably guess, a nail trial is an opportunity to test out the type of manicure and/or pedicure you'll have done ahead of your big day. While it might seem like a small details, the pros say these trials are a total must. "You plan every detail for your wedding, including hair and makeup, so why not your nails?" says celebrity manicurist Jackie Saulsbery. "The nail trial is exactly like any other wedding trial—it is your time to discuss your ideas with your nail artist, test different shades, and maybe even play with some nail art."

Thanks to social media platforms like Instagram and Pinterest, more and more brides are thinking ahead when it comes to all things related to their wedding-day look, nails included. "Brides to be are able to 'pin' or save things they like ahead of time, giving them the time to formulate ideas and really think of the manicure rather than just going in the day or two before your wedding," says Saulsberry. "I like wedding nail trials because it helps the bride to be avoid any unnecessary stress and keeps everyone happy."

Ahead of booking your nail trial, here are a few things the experts recommend keeping in mind.

When should your pre-wedding nail trial take place?

Similar to a hair or makeup trial, a nail trial is often booked about four to six weeks out, although they can really be scheduled for any time. According to celebrity manicurist Michelle Saunders, it's best to schedule regular manicures every few weeks to keep your hands and nails in their best shape in the months leading up to your wedding. And if you're not interested in a formal nail trail, those weekly or bi-weekly manicures will have given you lots of chances to test out colors and nail shapes.

Consider hues that go best with your engagement ring and wedding band.

Remember that this will be the most photographed manicure you've ever worn, so be sure to choose a color and theme that works with your engagement ring and wedding band. "You don't want to be wearing a polish that clashes with the ring—especially if it isn't a traditional diamond," warns manicurist Skyy Hadley. "Someone with a baby blue gemstone could complement it with a matching manicure, or go with an equally as flattering shade like pale pink or a bright white."

Show your Pinterest board to your manicurist.

Just like you'd bring inspiration photos to your hairstylist or makeup artist, Saulsbery suggests coming to your nail trial armed with examples of your nail vision. "Before jumping right into the 'testing,' talk to your nail artist about what it is that attracts you to each shade or design and see if you can use that to create something custom," she says. "If you can, also try to bring in a picture of your dress."

Don't be afraid to try something new.

If you've always been a fan of classic nudes and neutrals, Hadley, suggests considering a more intricate design on one of your nails so you can see how it suits you. "The same goes for the opposite end of the spectrum—those who are first to opt for a bright, bold splash of color might consider a beige or a blush pink," she says. "Nail trials give you a chance to try things out so make sure you take advantage of that!"

Consider the importance of long-lasting polishes.

"French might be nice, but unless you're wearing acrylics or a gel polish, odds are it'll chip before you even get to the reception," says Hadley. For this reason, she recommends considering all of your options and going with the formula that makes the most sense for you (and your wedding and honeymoon).

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