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History & Evolution of Nail Art and Design

The recently released video of 100 years of Nail Art is creating lot of buzz in fashion and makeup category. The video captured the stages of trends and development is nail styles of last 100 years gives lot of insights how nail style has changed or evolved in last 100 years.

But the nail art does not just stand for 100 years. The exact beginning of nail art & style is yet to be found and you should feel proud of the fact that the oldest origin of Nail Art is with India.

It is believed with the available sources that Nail Art began first from India in 5000 BC when Indian women used to dye their nail and fingers with mehandi. In some parts of the country this trend still exists. Later on during 3000 BC Chinese people developed a complex lacquere made of egg whites, bee’s wax and vegetable dyes. In order to create shade, people in that time used crushed orchid and rose petals to create shades from pink to red.  However it was a time consuming activity for producing shades as it has to be applied for hours to create an effect on nail.

Manicure which has origin in the history around 7000 BC too was reborn between 0- 1800 AD. During the Middle Ages manicure were considered as an outdated practice. The practice of Manicure was reborn during 1800 AD in Europe when wealthy women started manicuring their nails. The European wealthy women who took up this old tradition of manicure were conscious to have no pigment. This was the period around 15th century when Nail Art was practically recreated when women started decorating their nail with the picture of eagle. In 1800-1900 Manicure was again became popular when during Victorial age the nail was treated with red oil and chamois cloth.

It was the 1920’s when nail art, nail style and nail design was revolutionized with the emerging trends in fashion, beauty and makeup. Along with the emergence of newer fashion style, the 1920’s witnessed the nail scene with half moon manicure. The Moon Manicure was all around in this time where two contrasting shades of polish were applied, a smaller one at the base and covering the large tip with other shade. It was almost like a reversed French manicure.

And after that there was no looking back for Nail as the fashion of nail style, nail design and manicure was completely in. During this time,  nail style & design has gradually occupied an important space in one’s fashion sense, if something was missing it was a standard nail polish. In 1930’s Revlon introduced Nail Polish with several colors which made the fashionable nail options easy and accessible. It was time when people thought of stopping staining the nail and coat it with hard enamel as new Polish was quite a thing to go for.

The nail world did not stop here, the hunger for fashion and creativity led to nail extensions. In 1934 dentist Maxwell created first set of fake nails for his patients who were used to bite nail. The solution for biting nails gave birth to new nail style and nail art i.e nail extensions. In order to correct a broken nail for his patient, Dr. Frederick Slack accidentally invented Acrylic Nail extension.

Over a period of time Nail Art & Style grew from simple manicure to styles, shades and extensions. At present, Nail Art, Nail Design and Nail Style is one of the fastest growing sgment in beauty & makeup. Nail has become an integral part our fashion and style sense. We have options available for different occasion, different shades, various arts pertaining to nail. In India too, the nail segment is growing very fast as the consumers in India wake up to this global phenomenon.


Now you can observe several beauty salons and makeup artists offering services in nail art and nail techniques. We see several events, activities and companies making its presence in India so as to cash upon this growing segment. The companies like Nail Pro, NSI Nails and others offering products and training in nail and nail techniques is a testimony in itself  that this segment is here to stand. It is expected that in next 03 years the nail segment will see huge growth from the perspective of end consumers and professionals making career in this space.  

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