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Beauty/Makeup/Nails/Polishes

Top 10 Dark Nail Polishes

Meet The Most Popular Dark Nail Polishes For A Moody, Vampy Fall Mani

Image credits: opi

If you ask us, the transition from summer to fall is the most exciting time of year. Hear us out: humidity is basically non-existent, you can sip hot coffee without sweating up a storm, and rather than wearing as little as possible to keep from overheating, you get to pile on all the blanket-like sweaters, trendy jackets, and cool coats as you darn well please.

Another obvious plus? Getting to switch your go-to nude nail polish for something deeper, darker, and moodier. It's an incredibly easy swap to make, but it's one of those things that makes a huge impact and can instantly get you into that autumnal state of mind. With that, we scoured the internet in search of the most popular dark nail colors out there right now. From mossy greens and almost-black blues to an ever-so-classic merlot, look no further than the 10 shades below for your next salon or at-home manicure.

How We Found The Best Dark Nail Polishes

As with all of our Top 10 lists, we used our ultra-smart algorithm to round up this selection of top-trending dark nail colors. This proprietary tool finds the best products on the market by factoring in data from best-seller lists, reviews, social buzz, and even recommendations from top publications and beauty editors. Ahead, find our official guide to the most in-demand dark nail colors you can buy and wear right now.

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October 25, 2023

Written By:Naomi Venerable

Product Expert:Georgia Jones

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Top 10 Lists serve as unbiased shopping guides to the most trusted product recommendations on the internet. Products are scored and ranked using an algorithm backed by data consumers find most valuable when making a purchase. We are reader-supported and may earn a commission when you shop through our links.

The Rankings


10
Image credits: dior
Rank & Style Approved

dior

Dior Vernis Nail Polish In Nuit 1947

Overall Score

4.2

10

Dior Vernis Nail Polish In Nuit 1947

4.5

4 User Reviews

2.1

Best Seller

3

Industry Recognition

0

Social Buzz

About Our Scoring System

In order for any product to be featured on Rank & Style, it must first meet the requirements set by our algorithm—a vetting process that allocates points based on consumer and industry data to score and rank products within a given category.

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Best Deep Red Nail Polish

WHY IT MADE THE LIST
Infused with floral extracts, the Dior Vernis nail polish collection delivers highly pigmented color and a gel effect hold while protecting nails for long lasting wear. The shade Nuit 1947 is a vampy red with purple undertones perfect for achieving a moody manicure with just two coats.

ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW
The Dior Vernis nail polish collection make up a range of colors inspired by both timeless couture pieces and the latest creations from the House of Dior.


Smith & Cult Nail Polish In Kings And Thieves

Overall Score

4.25

09

Smith & Cult Nail Polish In Kings And Thieves

4.58

218 User Reviews

2.7

Best Seller

3

Industry Recognition

0

Social Buzz

About Our Scoring System

In order for any product to be featured on Rank & Style, it must first meet the requirements set by our algorithm—a vetting process that allocates points based on consumer and industry data to score and rank products within a given category.

Best Dark Blue Nail Polish

WHO IT'S FOR
If you're sick of sporting your usual deep reds and merlots, switch things up with this award-winning midnight blue. It's so dark that it almost veers black, but it feels a little fresher and more feminine.

ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW
Smith & Cult's nail polishes are seriously long-lasting and shiny. One reviewer even claimed she typically goes nine days without a single chip.

Cruelty Free

Cruelty Free


Olive & June Nail Polish In Luxe Loafer

Overall Score

4.3

08

Olive & June Nail Polish In Luxe Loafer

4.9

70 User Reviews

2.5

Best Seller

0

Industry Recognition

3

Social Buzz

About Our Scoring System

In order for any product to be featured on Rank & Style, it must first meet the requirements set by our algorithm—a vetting process that allocates points based on consumer and industry data to score and rank products within a given category.

Best Crimson Red Nail Polish

WHY IT MADE THE LIST
Olive & June's Luxe Loafer has a sheerness to it, mimicking the look of real patent leather. The sheer effect also gives it a more neutral appearance, so you can wear it with anything without the fear of it clashing with your fall and winter outfits.

ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW
Like all of Olive & June's nail polishes, this crimson-colored nail polish is 15-free, which means it's made without 15 toxic ingredients like formaldehyde and parabens.


Sally Hansen Miracle Gel Nail Polish In Been There, Dune That

Overall Score

4.4

07

Sally Hansen Miracle Gel Nail Polish In Been There, Dune That

4.27

38049 User Reviews

3.3

Best Seller

3

Industry Recognition

3

Social Buzz

About Our Scoring System

In order for any product to be featured on Rank & Style, it must first meet the requirements set by our algorithm—a vetting process that allocates points based on consumer and industry data to score and rank products within a given category.

Best Brown Nail Polish

WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT
From deep dark hues to milky shades, we've seen countless iterations of chocolate manicures that are giving major chic fall vibes. Sally Hansen's Been There, Dune That polish will serve as an excellent base for a chocolate chrome manicure but is also bold enough to wear as a standalone color. 

ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW
To achieve an at-home manicure that lasts longer than a few days, try out this 2-step system that promises not to chip or fade for up to 8 days.


Essie Nail Polish In Off Tropic

Overall Score

4.35

06

Essie Nail Polish In Off Tropic

4.5

41968 User Reviews

5

Best Seller

2

Industry Recognition

3

Social Buzz

About Our Scoring System

In order for any product to be featured on Rank & Style, it must first meet the requirements set by our algorithm—a vetting process that allocates points based on consumer and industry data to score and rank products within a given category.

Best Dark Green Nail Polish

WHY PEOPLE LOVE IT
Over the obvious dark shades of burgundy, black, and deep blue? This enchanting forest green is a fresh alternative that still evokes all the winter feels—think scenic drives and premature Christmas decor.

USER REVIEW
"I put on Off Tropic the day that it came in the mail and fell in love. I love the darkness of the polish but it is still a distinct green. [...] It is gorgeous. I got compliments on my nails all day long. Definitely one of my top five favorite Essie colors."


Essie Expressie Quick-Dry Nail Polish In Not So Low-Key

Overall Score

4.45

05

Essie Expressie Quick-Dry Nail Polish In Not So Low-Key

4.57

26990 User Reviews

5

Best Seller

0

Industry Recognition

3

Social Buzz

About Our Scoring System

In order for any product to be featured on Rank & Style, it must first meet the requirements set by our algorithm—a vetting process that allocates points based on consumer and industry data to score and rank products within a given category.

Best Burgundy Nail Polish

WHY IT MADE THE LIST
Ringing in under $9, this creamy burgundy red is proof that quality nail polish doesn't have to be expensive. This vegan formula delivers a highly pigmented color that dries down in a matter of seconds. 

ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW
No base coat or top coat is needed when using any Expressie Quick-Dry Nail Polish.


OPI Infinite Shine Nail Polish In Steel Waters Run Deep

Overall Score

4.55

04

OPI Infinite Shine Nail Polish In Steel Waters Run Deep

4.6

106903 User Reviews

5

Best Seller

3

Industry Recognition

0

Social Buzz

About Our Scoring System

In order for any product to be featured on Rank & Style, it must first meet the requirements set by our algorithm—a vetting process that allocates points based on consumer and industry data to score and rank products within a given category.

Best Grey Nail Polish

WHY IT MADE THE LIST
If you're seeking a neutral besides white or black, gray is the perfect alternative. The OPI Infinite Shine Nail Polish in Steel Waters Run Deep is a statement-making silver that looks classic and is universally flattering on all skin tones. 

ADDITIONAL THINGS TO KNOW
The Infinite Shine Nail Polish creates a gel-like wear and shine that lasts for up to 11 days. 


Essie Nail Polish In Licorice

Overall Score

4.55

03

Essie Nail Polish In Licorice

4.56

42025 User Reviews

5

Best Seller

4

Industry Recognition

0

Social Buzz

About Our Scoring System

In order for any product to be featured on Rank & Style, it must first meet the requirements set by our algorithm—a vetting process that allocates points based on consumer and industry data to score and rank products within a given category.

Best Jet Black Nail Polish

WHY IT MADE THE LIST
Is it really fall if you don't sport at least one black mani? Equal parts classic and cool, this iconic Essie shade is the crème de la crème of inky black nail colors.

HELPFUL TIP
Black is more versatile than you might think. For a subtler take, try using this shade for the tips of a French mani.


OPI Nail Lacquer In Black Onyx

Overall Score

4.55

02

OPI Nail Lacquer In Black Onyx

4.66

9930 User Reviews

3.3

Best Seller

4

Industry Recognition

3

Social Buzz

About Our Scoring System

In order for any product to be featured on Rank & Style, it must first meet the requirements set by our algorithm—a vetting process that allocates points based on consumer and industry data to score and rank products within a given category.

Best OPI Black Nail Polish

WHY IT MADE THE LIST
The nail polish equivalent to a classic LBD, Black Onyx is one of the blackest shades around. It's also made without DBP, toluene, or formaldehyde, so you can feel pretty good about swiping it on.

USERS SAID
“I think the best nail polish is OPI polish. For those of you looking for a high-gloss black that lasts and lasts, nothing beats this. It goes on like a dream and looks like black glass on my nails.”


OPI Nail Lacquer In Lincoln Park After Dark

Overall Score

4.75

01

OPI Nail Lacquer In Lincoln Park After Dark

4.72

3551 User Reviews

5

Best Seller

4

Industry Recognition

3

Social Buzz

About Our Scoring System

In order for any product to be featured on Rank & Style, it must first meet the requirements set by our algorithm—a vetting process that allocates points based on consumer and industry data to score and rank products within a given category.

Best Dark Nail Polish Overall

WHY IT MADE THE LIST
Is it purple? Is it black? Regardless, no list of the best dark nail colors would be complete without this cult-classic, shade-shifting OPI polish. The epitome of rich and dramatic manis, Lincoln Park After Dark is one of the most unique, compliment-inducing hues out there.

USER REVIEW
"I had this polish applied during a pedicure and loved it so much that I had to get my own. It's richly dark in just one application. I've worn it on my fingernails for over a week, and, despite washing dishes and practically living in the pool, it hasn't chipped or shown any wear yet."

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