Each year, New York Fashion Week (NYFW) provides inspiration for CND nail artists. Now that this year’s fashion week has wrapped up, we’re giving you an inside look into how these artists craft designer nails for the high-fashion runway.

CND collaborated with world-class designers this year to create looks ranging from bold and elaborate to simple and salon-ready, but all of the New York Fashion Week nail art gave a glimpse into the future of the craft. Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at how top nail artists and fashion designers work together to create show-stopping looks.

Nail styles by CND for The Blondes

Photo source: Patrick MacLeod

The Design Lab

The looks CND creates for NYFW are conceptualized in the CND Design Lab by a group of skilled nail professionals. The members of the group may vary from season to season, but their passion for nail perfection is unwavering. Armed with suitcases full of nail products and then some, each member brings an eye for detail and a vivid imagination.

NYFW nails by CND

The Inspiration

Nail artists from the Design Lab meet with designers to discuss their vision so the team has a good foundation for their creations. Mood boards of fabric, photos and other items help the artists immerse themselves in the designers’ visions and work together to produce lasting styles.

Indeed, creating New York Fashion Week nail art means setting the trends for the coming season months in advance. The team works together to envision the future, talking textures and colors, as well as styles and trends.

The Creation

The CND team uses a variety of products and embellishments to turn 10 tiny canvases into full-blown works of art that can hold their own on the runway. The nails are created on tips that can be applied at a later time, which helps prevent any nail mishaps while the models get dressed and made up. This also allows the nails to be kept in the design vault to preserve fashion history. In some cases, the models’ nails are polished on-site, with nail artists working among makeup artists and hair stylists. In the end, each model showcases perfectly polished nail art that raises the bar for nail art and fashion trends every year.

NYFW nails by CND

Photo source: Jennifer Graylock

The Art

This year, CND’s collaborations highlighted the power of fashion and beauty. CND’s work with fashion designer The Blonds was a riot of opulence. The collection featured nails dripping with baroque luxury and artistry, embellished with Swarovski, chains and other items to imitate jewelry. Women wore talon-like tips to embody the primal mood board, while men sported shorter embellished nails in an array of metallic base colors.

New York Fashion Week Nail Art

Photo source: Jennifer Graylock

Other shows were equally dazzling. Ryan Lo’s show featured all sorts of solid pink nail shades, in shapes ranging from a soft sport length to an elegant almond. The nail looks at Mary Katranzou’s show caught the lights with well-placed pieces of foil and metal leafing. Uniquely styled ombre and stone-like base designs also incorporated shimmering inlays. The overall effect resembled nature’s elements: earth, wind and fire.

New York Fashion Week Nail ArtWhen some of the world’s top fashion designers collaborate with top nail artists, magic happens. This year’s NYFW reflected the artistry and creativity of these collaborations, showcasing nail art that will set trends for this season and beyond.