London's best nail salons
Find the best salons and nail bars in London for magnificent manicures and pretty pedicures
Hula Nails, Old Street | Picture: Elisabeth Blanchet
Need to keep your digits looking divine? We've rounded up the ten best nail bars in London, where you'll find only the most creative nail designs, perfect manicures and the neatest pedicures. Whatever your tastes, they've got it nailed.
This wonderfully silly themed beautician's is decked out entirely, and authentically, from the salvaged innards of an American Airlines Boeing 747. Brightly lit beauty stations made up of roomy re-upholstered plane seats (think business class rather than Easyjet) accommodate travel themed treatments like the long lasting 'Two Weeks To Tahiti' manicure (£39) or the quick file and polish 'Shanghai Shape' (£9). If you've got something more luxurious in mind, your treatment will take place over in VIP – where you can indulge in a two person pedicure station with an ex-Air France first class seating system.
- 3 Chichester Rents, WC2 A1E
Hula’s boudoir style beauty rooms are gloriously decked out in Hawaian wallcoverings, with plush velvet sofas and burlesque flourishes (airbrush tans are dried off with a feathery fan, while beauticians have a distinctly Dita Von Teese air about them). Nail treatments take place in the window of the parlour, so you can gossip as you watch the media types go by. Basic maincures from £15 and UV nail extensions from £37.
- 203-205 Whitecross St, EC1Y 8QP
Sophie Harris-Greenslade studied illustration at Kingston University and worked at legendary WAH nails before setting up as an independent nail artist with Friday and Saturday stints at Dalston hair salon, Stunt Dolly. The Illustrated Nail outpost in the ground floor of the decadently dressed salon provides a file, buff and polish from £25, Shellac nails from £40 and her beautiful, bold nail art from £25-£65.
- 582 Kingsland Rd, E8 4AH
Sharmadean Reid's kick started the global nail art trend when it she opened her first nail salon in Dalston back in 2009 – she also boasts a prime spot in Topshop Oxford Circus' bustling basement. The original Dalston branch, now homed within Bleach Hair, provides her instantly-recognisable nail art – as well as regular manicures and pedicures – from £25 in buzzy, friendly surroundings.
- 420 Kingsland Rd, E8 4AA
This little nail bar sorts out your nails with little ceremony and only moderate cost attached (£15 gets you a good manicure). The only glossy thing about the place is the nails, but that means staff are happy to get stuck in with the power tools to file off dead skin; our tester left after a pedicure with feet half a size smaller. We’re not the only ones to have discovered it: often the queue is out the door, so it’s worth booking.
- 28 Tottenham Street, W1T 4RH
This opulent nail bar in West Dulwich can oblige with a basic shape and polish (from just £7) to Shellac nails (a gel colour that lasts two to three weeks, from £25). Divas-in-the-making can enjoy a mini-manicure (aimed at three-to-12 year olds) for £5. Threading, brows and massages are available for grown-ups.
- 251 Gipsy Rd, SE27 9QY
Kitted out with vintage shop fittings, this chic Primrose Hill boutique stocks a well-edited array of beauty brands, including Dr Hauschka, REN and Shu Uemura. On Thursday, Fridays and Saturdays The Nail Parlour offers manicures and pedicures with a basic shape and paint costing just £15, while a luxurious one hour Minx manicure will set you back £45.
- 117 Regent's Park Road, NW1 8UR
Cowshed’s Soho branch delivers the same quality treatments, customer service and divine-smelling products in more buzzy surroundings than its other London day spas at both Clarendon Cross, Shoreditch House and High Road House, Chiswick. The ground floor is where you can recline for a pedicure and a chat, while downstairs you’ll find the peaceful treatment rooms. If you are short on time but in dire need of beautification, book in for a multi-purpose treatment like the Cowgroom Indulgent in which two therapists can deliver a facial, eye brow tidy, manicure and pedicure in 60 minutes for £110.
- Fouberts Place
This laid-back Islington nail bar caters for all talon requirements from a full manicure (starting at £35) to acrylic tips. All looks are coated with the salon’s own formaldehyde-free nail polishes. Complimentary bubbly and iPods in the ‘drying lounge’ are a bonus.
- 50 Cross Street, N1 2BA