If you consider yourself a nail enthusiast, chances are you’re familiar with Aurora nails.

If not, you might have associated it with Disney’s Sleeping Beauty, but in reality, it draws inspiration from the mesmerizing Northern Lights, also known as Aurora Borealis.

According to Allure, these enchanting and captivating nails were all the rage in South Korea in 2020, with almost every Korean girl flaunting Aurora nails on their fingertips.

While this nail design may have taken a backseat for a while, we’ve received word that it’s poised to become the trendiest manicure style in 2024! Could Aurora nails be the next “It girl” to dominate the first quarter?

Keep reading to explore more about these attention-grabbing Aurora nails and find design inspirations for your upcoming mani-pedi appointment!

What Are Aurora Nails?


𝗧𝗥𝗘𝗡𝗗𝗜𝗡𝗚 ✨🧊 𝙄𝙘𝙮 𝙄𝙧𝙞𝙙𝙚𝙨𝙘𝙚𝙣𝙩 𝘼𝙪𝙧𝙤𝙧𝙖 𝙣𝙖𝙞𝙡𝙨 🧊✨ Tutorial anyone? 💙✨ #auroranails #iridescentnails #reflectivenailart #glitternails #flashnails #diynails #easynails #cleangirlnails #cleangirl #koreannails #nailaesthetic

♬ original sound – 𝔠𝔬𝔫𝔫𝔬𝔯𝔰𝔞𝔢𝔭

Aurora nails, also referred to as “uru uru nails” or “ice nails,” first emerged in the K-beauty world and have become increasingly popular due to their captivating resemblance to the northern lights or glistening water.

What distinguishes Aurora nails is their luminous finish, which transforms hues as they move, producing a futuristic allure, particularly when exposed to camera lights.

Fun fact: They’re also known as Korea’s take on the cat eye manicure but with more colours, different colours on each nail, and added jewels or trinkets on top!

How Are Aurora Nails Created?

The iridescent look of Aurora nails evokes images of seashells, mermaid tails, and the spectacular light show of the sky, making it a captivating addition to any outfit.

This particular nail trend entails the application of shimmer foils within a transparent gel, resulting in a colour-changing effect as the nails are in motion.

The result is a three-dimensional interpretation reminiscent of glazed doughnut nails.

Additionally, the mystical appearance of Aurora nails is enhanced by the use of magnetic gel polishes containing magnetic particles.

Nail artists use a special magnetic wand to manipulate the shimmer and create unique patterns, adding to the allure of this enchanting nail trend.


Another amazing Aurora nail tutorial from our Muze Kiki! 🧊🥶✨ #fyp #foryou #gelnails #koreangelnails #auroranails #holonails #holographicnails #nailtutorial #nailfilm #chromenails #icenails

♬ harleys in hawaii – sped up – 90degrees & eyeroze & Melodyz Town

Although most salons would use specially created Aurora gels to achieve the desired effect, you can also replicate the look at home with holographic foils or sheer, opalescent nail polish!

Trendy Aurora Nails Inspos

“Nude” Aurora Nails

For all the classic girlies who love timeless nail looks but want to add a little more glitz to the glamour.

Or for first-timers of Aurora nails because you really can’t go wrong with a pink nude-ish hue!

Clear Ice Aurora Nails

aurora nails trend

Credit: @yuca_814/Instagram

This may very well be the regular manicure of Disney’s Elsa and Narnia’s White Witch…or at least what I’d imagine all ice queens flaunt.

In line with the “less is more” trend in the beauty sphere, clear nails are also having their moment in the spotlight as one of the pinnacles of the “barely there” and put-together look.

Diamond Aurora Nails

aurora nails trend, northern lights nails

Credit: @erika_carolina.jp/Instagram

“Diamonds are forever”, indeed, so why not immortalise them into shiny pieces on your nails? After all, diamonds are a girl’s best friend (iykyk)!

Plus, you can really play around with just how much bling you want — one on each hand or more. Of course, feel free to change up the rest of your nails from pink to any other colour you wish.

Iridescent Butterfly Aurora Nails

aurora nails trend, northern lights nails

Credit: @yuca_814/Instagram

Another way to glam up your holographic and otherworldly Aurora nails is to have 3D butterflies plastered onto some of your nails.

Trust us, you’ll definitely feel like a Winx Club fairy with this nail look!

Glacier Blue Aurora Nails

aurora nails trend

Credits: @yuca_814/Instagram, @_ciel__nail/Instagram

Whether it’s more of an ice orb or mystical puddles, let glaciers and water bodies be your inspiration for stunning Aurora nails.

“Pretty in Pink” Aurora Nails

aurora nails trend, northern lights nails

Credit: @yuca_814/Instagram

Still living in a Barbie world as a Barbie girl? Go for a hot or bright pink for the base of your Aurora nails.

You can even jazz it up by adding some flashy stones, jewels, or stickers to really emanate more of your personality!

Disco Ball Aurora Nails


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by YUCA 🥣 ゆか (@yuca_814)

Instead of adding just one piece of shimmer or holographic foil, why not add ’em all?

If you’re into kitschy clothing and retro vibes, these Aurora nails could be a great way to pledge your love for the ’70s.

Purple Beams Aurora Nails

aurora nails trend, northern lights nails

Credit: @kyalulu_nailstudio/Instagram

Can’t choose between your usual pink or a refreshing blue? Why not mash the two together for a stunning purple?

If you ask us, these Aurora nails certainly look like they’re owned by a galactic princess with powers glowing from her fingertips!

Silver Dreams Aurora Nails


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Kiki | Nail Artist (@kikilanail)

With the rise of chrome and Y2K nails, plus the recent surge of love for grey nails on Xiao Hong Shu, we’ve been seeing a lot of this colour.

Fret not, it’s actually anything but dull! Ask to make them “Aurora” and you’ll walk away with piercing, magical nails.

Opulent Liquid Gold Aurora Nails

aurora nails trend

Credit: photon_nails/Instagram

Looking for something more fluid and sophisticated yet abstract? Something about this Aurora nail design is really alluring and reminds us of Sam Sparro’s Black & Gold.

To make it more interesting, opt for a different colour on your other hand or request to add tones of gold (2D or 3D).

Mismatched Aurora Nails

aurora nails trend

Credit: @yuca_814/Instagram

Can’t decide on a sole colour? Why not pick a few and run with it?

Also known as a “multicoloured manicure”, this eclectic and spontaneous approach to nail designs was one of the first official nail trends in 2021 and they’re not going anywhere!

These “indie nails” are a simple way to spruce up your look and an even better way to show off that quirky, artsy side of yours.

Galaxy Aurora Nails

aurora nails trend, northern lights nails

Credit: @erika_carolina.jp/Instagram

If the northern lights aren’t otherworldly enough for you, take it a step (or a few colours) further into outer space and the universe.

This will be a great design for sci-fi fans and for any futuristic-themed party you’re heading to!

(Every) Summertime Aurora Nails

aurora nails trend, northern lights nails

Credit: @lameufquifaitlesongles/Instagram

It’s giving berries, candies and citrus beneath an auburn glaze. Just like in NIKI‘s 2021 hit song, we’re also falling in love every summertime but with these enigmatic nails!

Ice Pops Aurora Nails

aurora nails trend, northern lights nails

Credit: @kkoht_nails/Instagram

We can’t deny how sweet and delicious this Aurora nail design looks. The nail technician described them as “rainbow sherbet” but we’re definitely thinking of those colourful ice treats from our childhood.

Got a sweet tooth? These Aurora nails are the one for you!

Blown Glass Aurora Nails

For something a lot more abstract and eye-catching, go for nail extensions and longer talons of masterpieces that are likened to blown glass.

This combination of dark green and purple gives an alien-esque vision of the cosmos, but you can always switch up the colours to your preferences!

Oyster Shell Aurora Nails

aurora nails trend, northern lights nails

Credit: @vdw.nails/Instagram

Now, we know you would have seen more seashells on nails, but this specific shellfish is really catching everyone’s gaze.

Oyster lover or not, you’ll love this simple yet captivating Aurora nail set!

Wavy Aurora Nails


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Dylan Pritchard (@thenailwhisperer)

If you love lounging by the beach and feeling one with the ocean, these mermaid-inspired Aurora nails might just do the trick.

Of course, an iridescent shade never disappoints but we dare you to go bolder and louder with your colour choices!

Featured image credit: @sugamama_nailz/Instagram, @zillabeau/TikTok, @lameufquifaitlesongles/Instagram