Nail Art Know How: Stacked Squares

If a time traveler took a lap in any present-day department store, they might question what decade they’d landed in. That’s because this season, the 1970s are back with a vengeance—patchwork details and suede abound. Manicurist Tracylee took a cue from the former in creating this week’s mani. “It’s the patchwork-like overlap of the boxes that keeps the design from feeling too static,” she says.

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To get the look, apply a layer of clear base. Then, lay down two coats of Burberry nail polish in “Nude Pink,” ($22; a barely-there blush, and allow to dry.

Next, dip a striper brush in Dior’s brick-red “Massai” nail polish ($27; and outline a square at either the top or base of each nail. Then, use the same brush to fill in the shape. (Don’t worry if you’re prone to coloring outside the lines—we’ll straighten things out shortly.) Repeat the process using a clean striper brush dipped in Formula X’s camel-colored “Brain Power” nail polish ($11;, overlapping the square you already created.

Finally, use a fresh striper brush dipped in your base color—“Nude Pink”—to straighten the edges of each square. (According to Tracylee, making refinements using the base shade instead of the color of the squares themselves makes for a cleaner finish.) Add a swipe of top coat, and just like that, you’re flaunting the season’s coolest trend—no denim jacket required.

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