Five Chic Nail Colours For Autumn

my five chic Autumn nail polishes


Autumn just wouldn’t be Autumn without two coats on my nails. I’m talking polish here of course. I love to see the transitioning trend in A/W nail colour.

I’ve long been an Essie devotee but easily swayed. There are so many gorgeous colours to choose from, sticking to one brand isn’t possible. With new collections launched each Autumn, some I like, some I don’t care for, I’m not quite ready to give up on iconic Essie shades such as Merino Cool and Angora Cardi.

I’ve put together my most reached for autumnal polishes, leaving reds behind until Christmas comes around and focussing on transitional colours but keeping it chic as always. Before you start, always remember your base coat. Dark colours will stain more readily than lighter summery polishes.

Essie – Merino Cool

Described as, cutting-edge glamour. Relentless beauty. This sensuous autumn mulberry nail polish is the very essence of style and the epitome of chic.

I’ll agree with that. Merino Cool doesn’t fall into the ‘dark’ category as such with its mulberry tone, but that said, it does have a more autumnal vibe and one I wear more at this time of year than any other. I love the muted tone and neutral appeal which fits well with Autumn attire. It’s in the grey-mauve bracket and on the “dusty” side. The formula is smooth and glides on well. Two coats needed for opacity.

Essie – Angora Cardi

Brush on this lush, deep dusty rose polish and you’ll never want to take it off. it’s one stylish sweater for every fashion season.

Angora Cardi was first released with the fall collection “Cuddle With Colour” way back in 2009 but is still holding its own. In 2016 Angora cardi was touted as Pinterest’s “most Pinned” shade of the year. No doubt, this accolade has bolstered its recognition and it remains one of my cult polishes of all time.

Gaining ground on Merino Cool, with it’s warmer rose tones, I’m in no hurry to replace it with a newer colour. Any mention of “Angora cardi” and I’m dreaming of wrapping up in a soft, warm knit on a wintery day. Again, this being a muted tone makes it fairly neutral, wear it with chunky knits or dress it up with a classic trench.

Nails Inc – Kensington High Street

Described as the bestselling Gel effect polish range, formulated with revolutionary plasticiser technology for a flawless manicure at home. Gel effect polish glides on effortlessly and the extra wide brush ensures easy application. Highly pigmented to provide exceptional coverage and with a plumping agent to level out any imperfections on the nail.

This deep plum polish is an Autumn staple for me and makes a welcome appearance each year – as sure as the falling leaves. It’s chic, classy and one which I repurchase again and again.

Nails Inc – Alexa Silk

2014 was the year Nails Inc celebrated its fifteenth birthday and to mark the occasion, a collaboration was formed with fashionista Alexa Chung – bringing a fresh new face to the brand. Tired old bottles restyled, and replaced with shiny new ones fashioned by Fabien Baron. Also, two new polish lines came forth.


Alexa Silk. autumn nail polishes


I’m a fan of the “black but, not black” nail. That said, a full-on black can also be chic and when styled in the right way can still be “grown up”.

Silk, by Alexa Chung, is black, but as its name suggests, it takes on an appearance of silk which somehow softens the look. There’s no mega-watt shine here, more of a glossy and not surprisingly, silky look to it. (I’m wearing it on my pinky in the photos below). Silk is for you if you’re looking for a subtle version of a typical black. Perfect for day wear, but equally, wear it if you’re going “out-out” it won’t let you down either way. The formula is rich and glossy and lasts as well as any other polish. Finish with a top coat for a little more staying power.


Autumn nail polishes

Essie – Luxedo

Essie tells you to: Suit up in Essie’s beautiful plum black lacquer and add a feminine touch to a sexy, tailored nail colour look borrowed from the boys.

Luxedo is my most worn shade from my ever-growing Essie collection. Almost black, but those deep purple tones come through giving an edgy appeal. I adore it and have repurchased several times. It has a sophisticated style and again, a “grown-up” feel to it. Two coats and it’s opaque.

Once you’ve applied your dark polish, you’ll need to make sure you clean up your cuticle area.

OPI Correct & Clean Up Pen


Demonstrating the OPI corrector pen Autumn nail polishes


When wearing a dark polish it goes without saying, you’ll need a perfectly preened “cuticle gap”.

Tidy it up with an OPI corrector pen which comes with a spare nib. It’s also refillable so you can simply refill with your own nail polish remover – as when you need to. You can see from the rather “close up” photo above, I leave a gap all around the cuticle area and sides of my nails, I’ve always done this, as I just think it looks neater than polish leaking onto the sides. If this happens, it’s difficult to get a good clean appearance afterwards. The OPI corrector pen is one I can’t live without, and always use it when wearing dark polishes. I apply the usual two coats, allow to dry, tidy up the cuticle and finish with my top coat and I’m good to go.


OPI corrector pen. Autumn nail polishes.


Do you have any favourite Autumn polishes?


Shop Alexa Silk

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  1. October 12, 2017 / 7:52 am

    I love the Essie nail varnishes!! I haven’t tried Essie before! Also that corrector pen, I need in my life! Loved this post, reminding me to sort out my nails haha 🙈 X

    • Samantha
      October 12, 2017 / 9:59 am

      Essie colours are so good. You should treat yourself! x

  2. October 12, 2017 / 2:51 pm

    These shades are all GORGEOUS and perfect for autumn! I love the opi pen I’ve never seen it before! What a great product. Clare xxx |

    • Samantha
      October 12, 2017 / 5:36 pm

      Thank you! The pen is so good, refillable too which I like 🙂 x

  3. October 12, 2017 / 8:33 pm

    I got Angora Cardi as my first Essie shade last year and fell in love! I definitely want to pick up some more, I love the look of Merino Cool. I have my eye on a lovely autumnal burnt orange shade too which I can’t remember the name of now! I love Nails Inc polishes as well, they’re the most long lasting nail polishes I’ve ever had! I definitely want to pick up one of those corrector pens, that looks like the handiest tool ever! Fab post

    Ellie x

    • Samantha
      October 12, 2017 / 9:14 pm

      Oh did you? It’s so lovely isn’t it?! Glad you like it. Merino Cool is gorgeous too. If you remember the burnt orange one let me know. I don’t have any in that kind of shade so it would make a change. Yes the pen is great! I also have a Ciaté one too which is equally good but too manky to feature! Thanks lovely x

  4. October 13, 2017 / 6:13 am

    They’re such gorgeous shades! Essie always had such an amazing variety of colours to choose from. Angora Cardi is a beautiful shade. I’ve never seen one like it. I think I may have to get it x

    Lauren |

    • Samantha
      October 13, 2017 / 9:22 am

      I love the shades too! Also, the names are always so whimsical and cute. I’m sure you love Angora Cardi, it’s such a wearable shade! x

  5. October 13, 2017 / 5:35 pm

    I love love love these colours! I haven’t used Essie for ages, but I remember when I used to, I loved them! Especially dark purple colours, perfect for this time of year!

    Jessica x |

    • Samantha
      October 13, 2017 / 7:05 pm

      If you love dark purples Luxedo would be perfect for you! x

  6. October 15, 2017 / 8:00 pm

    I am OBSESSED with the Angora cardi shade, it is absolutely beautiful! So autumnal, perfect for this time of year. You’ve made me want to stock up on my nail colours now even though I think I need to get rid of a few before I buy more haha X

    • Samantha
      October 15, 2017 / 9:00 pm

      They’re always so tempting aren’t they! I have so many too, I even get sentimental about some of mine and can’t bear to throw them out! My favourites are always the autumnal shades, I go for a red nail here and there as that’s always a classic look. You should treat yourself to a couple more! x

  7. October 16, 2017 / 2:32 pm

    I have Angora Cardi to, it’s such a unique colour and always has people asking which nail varnish I’m wearing. This post has reminded me that I need to paint my nails!

    • Samantha
      October 16, 2017 / 3:16 pm

      It’s a cult favourite isn’t it! Glad to hear you love it too. X

  8. October 18, 2017 / 7:32 am

    Angora Cardi must be one of Essie’s most popular nail polishes! I really like Lady Like too – a bit lighter but still fall-feeling.
    Morgan | Hyacinth Girl

    • Samantha
      October 18, 2017 / 8:02 am

      Yes it’s one of the greats isn’t it! I’ve not seen Lady Like. I’ll have to have a look at that one. Thank you! x

  9. October 22, 2017 / 7:06 pm

    These are all such beautiful colours and so perfect for this time of year. I absolutely love the transition from pretty pastel shades in summer to darker plums and reds during autumn. Essie are one of my go to nail brands, such good quality! Fab post lovely x

    Tiffany x

    • Samantha
      October 22, 2017 / 7:14 pm

      They are aren’t they. Can’t beat Essie really, I tend to stick with them but not forgetting Nails Inc! I love the new-shape bottles. I always look forward to Autumn nail colour x

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