The $15 Nail Polish Behind Selena Gomez’s “High Gloss” Minimalist Manicure

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When Selena Gomez attended the Academy Museum Gala in Los Angeles, she hid her manicure under a pair of dramatic black opera-length gloves, leaving me to wonder what nail color was shining below the designer fabric. A glam red? A rich burgundy? Lots of glitter? Now we know, thanks to Gomez’s go-to nail artist Tom Bachik — and not only is it a masterclass in minimalism, it’s also budget-friendly!

For the gala, Gomez and Bachik decided on a “high gloss glam” mani that is truly the definition of “your nails but better.” First, Bachik prepped the star’s nail beds and cuticles, skipping extensions in favor of her natural nails. He filed her nails into a soft squoval shape, then painted them with Aprés Nail Gel Couleur in Gossamer Light, a sheer nude that provided just a hint of barely-there delicate color and lots of shine. The color is gorgeous, but so is the price tag. The gel polish retails for $14.99, no superstar price tag here.

Bachik used a gel shade on Gomez, which makes sense due to quick curing time and extra shine, but you don’t need an at-home UV light to get a similar look. Essie’s Gel Couture in Fairy Tailor and Of Corset give you that reflective shine and sheer wash of color without a UV light, and Static Nails’ Liquid Glass Lacquer in the aptly named Barely There captures the same high-gloss finish. For even more shine and protection, finish with a layer of CND Vinylux Long Wear Top Coat, a 2023 Best of Beauty winner.

These minimalistic manicures are par for the course for Gomez as of late; she has been feeling a simpler style these days, giving chrome a break in favor of sheer and nude shades. Earlier this month, she and Bachik collaborated on a “perfect, subtle chic nude” with a no-makeup makeup vibe, and they’ve also channeled the winter weather with a pure snowy white shade. Whenever Gomez changes up her polish, we pay attention — and usually make a nail appointment right after.

Get the look:

Aprés Nail Gel Couleur in Gossamer Light

Essie Gel Couture Longwear Nail Polish in Fairy Tailor

Static Nails Liquid Glass Lacquer in Barely There

CND Vinylux Long Wear Top Coat

More manicure inspo:

Now, watch manicures evolve over a century:

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