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Photograph: Courtesy Base Coat

The best nail salons in Los Angeles

Pamper yourself with a trim, buff and polish at one of the best nail salons Los Angeles has to offer

By Kate Wertheimer

We're spoiled when it comes to nail salons. Los Angeles seems to have one on every corner (you know, next to the coffee shops and poke joints), but how to tell which ones are worth it and which to skip? We put our paws through the ringer, got scrubbed, lotioned, buffed, polished and gelled to find the top shops in the city, and it turns out you don't need an entire day at the spa to feel pampered. From color options to comfy seating, these L.A. nail salons go above and beyond in every aspect—you could say they're nailing it.

RECOMMENDED: Find more ways to treat yourself at one of these spas in Los Angeles

The top nail salons L.A. has to offer

1. Olive & June

Health and beauty Nail salons Beverly Hills

Get pampered at this boho-chic salon, located in the heart of Beverly Hills (their Pasadena location is also tops). Choose from more than 350 shades from the polish wall, including many local brands like NCLA, Polish House and Jenna Hipp for RGB. Other polish brands include NARS, OPI, Essie and Kure Paris organic polishes, plus OPT and Shellac gels. Once the hardest part (picking your color) is over, take a seat in the minimalist space designed by the folks behind luxe Melrose Ave store TenOverSix. Services range from the Dree (mani/pedi combo) to the more pampering and organic Margot and Chrissy gel services. Affordable nails in a luxury atmosphere? We call that a steal.

Photograph: Courtesy Base Coat

2. Base Coat

Health and beauty Nail salons Downtown Arts District

Treat yo self. That's the motto at the Arts District's new nail salon, Base Coat, and they take it seriously. Before you even step inside the salon, you're greeted with a lush outdoor lounge space. Head inside, and there's a bar with free wifi, spa water, rosé and kombucha where you can hang with your gals and wait for your treatment. You can also spend time perusing the well-curated wares for sale, from locally made cards and jewelry to big-ticket items like blankets, sunglasses and of course, Base Coat products. Choose from a rainbow of colors (no gels here, just Base Coat-brand polish) and make your way to a comfy chair for a five-star treatment (refill, anyone?). The space is beautifually decorated, so you'll feel as though you're lounging in a chic living room throughout your treatment. You can even have your tarot cards read mid-service on select evenings. All this luxury comes at a price, making treatments here slightly more expensive than at other salons, but it's well worth it.

Photograph: Courtesy Hammer & Nails

3. Hammer & Nails

Health and beauty Nail salons Melrose

This mecca of grooming for guys, as seen on Shark Tank, offers up manly manis and pedis for dudes whose digits need a little love. Sink into deep leather chairs surrounded by dark wood furnishings, low lighting and personal flat-screens and headphones at each station. Get a wide array of typical treatments, or opt for experiences made just for those with rough hands. There are also some aromatherapy and healing options that no guy would scoff at, including a Citrus White Ale pedicure and a Hops & Cedar Experience, which includes a custom Guinness Extra Stout beer soak, an oatmeal exfoliation and cedar-smelling hot towel wraps. And ladies—you're welcome here too, just don't come looking for polish; Hammer & Nails provides no "artificial" services, meaning you'll only get clipped, scrubbed, lotioned and buffed.

4. Côte

Health and beauty Beauty salons Brentwood

Channeling California beach style with a touch of Southern France, Côte nail salon offers a premiere toxin-free experience all the way down to the polish. Their namesake line is crafted sans five main toxins (formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalate (DBP), toluene, camphor and formaldehyde resin). Beyond full service nail treatments, the chic salon and retail spot offers its own line of home and body goods. Think organic sugar body scrubs, candles, argan oil and hand and body cream. In a luxurious setting like this, you'll want to take them up on their private parties offering if you've got a beauty bash to throw.


5. Beauty Box

Health and beauty Hair salons Echo Park

Eastsiders can partake in a haircut, mani/pedi or all of the above in one leisurely afternoon thanks to this stylishly outfitted salon in Echo Park. Reclaimed wood interiors accented by industrial metal fixtures and exposed light bulbs serve as a modern, gender-neutral backdrop to the roster of services, from hand and nail treatments to makeup, waxing, cut and color. The team of nail and hair stylists is well-equipped to execute any look you want, but if you're going for hip, minimalist nail art and/or balayage highlights, you'll be in especially good hands.

Photo courtesy Alchemi Spa

6. Alchemie Spa

Health and beauty Spas Santa Monica

Right in the heart of Santa Monica's Main Street is an organic urban retreat by the sea. Locals stop in at the small spa for manis, pedis and face and body treatments using all-natural ingredients. Groups can book a spa party in the the modern, minimalist space decked in wood paneling and comfy couches, while members can get hooked up with discounted waxing, massages and facials. The infrared sauna and organic facials draw a big crowd, but don't overlook this spot for a simple mani/pedi combo in a luxurious, relaxing setting.

Photograph: Courtesy ES Nail

7. ES Nail

Health and beauty Nail salons Melrose

Japanese nail art is the main attraction at this celeb-frequented Bevelry Hills salon. This isn't where you go for your typical French mani; instead, think Swarovski-encrusted stiletto nails, hand-painted ombré tips and custom 3-D designs. You'll shell out $75 for a simple set and $120 for the works, but hey, you might run into Ke$ha or Zendaya while you're at it. Before booking an appointment, scout the salon's unique nail art on Instagram.

Bellacures in Brentwood
Photograph: Courtesy Bellacures

8. Bellacures Brentwood

Health and beauty Beauty salons Brentwood

Nestled in Brentwood’s quaint boutique-style village, Bellacures (a word play on "beautiful manicures") offers all the fancy pampering amenities you'll need for a verifiably beautiful set of nails. A veteran in luxurious nail treatments, the sought-after salon touts several locations across L.A. and is beloved by Hollywood starlets. Drop in for a quick mani-pedi or rent out the place for a private bash.

Photograph: Courtesy Gloss NailSpa

9. Gloss NailSpa

Health and beauty Nail salons Silver Lake

Not only does this spa boast one of the cheapest mani/pedi combos in the area, it also offers gel services, massages (hot stone even!) and organic aromatherapy (lavender, peppermint, eucalyptus, lemon—need we say more). With a wide range of colors—especially their gel selection—it's sometimes hard to choose, and the polishes are displayed close to the register in a spot less than ideal for leisurely perusal. Once you've chosen, though, you can relax with a free mimosa, week-old gossip mag or your cell phone while the friendly staff works their magic. Bonus: Silver Lake Ramen is in the same strip mall.

Photograph: Courtesy CHI Nail Bar & Organic Spa

10. CHI Nail Bar & Organic Spa

Health and beauty Nail salons Beverly Hills

A modern, zen-like retreat, CHI Nail Bar & Organic Spa is a tranquil departure from the congested Beverly Hills traffic you probably sat through to get there—but it's worth it. Glam out your nails in an equally lux setting with full service nail treatments featuring organic green tea seed oil and hot towel hand wraps for added pampering. Mani-pedis (and all services for that matter) are infused with holistic Chinese remedies for the ultimate zen treatment, and to help you find your inner chi.

Photograph: Courtesy Essie Polish

11. Lemon Nails & Spa

Health and beauty Nail salons Pacific Palisades

Affordable manicures in the Palisades? Indeed, they do exist, thanks to this cozy salon on Antioch Street. Stop by for a de-stressing pedi in the boutique's uniquely comfortable chairs, accompanied by a chat with the warm, capable staff. Well-executed pedicures for $21 and manis for $15 make the shop a neighborhood staple.

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Photograph: Courtesy Drybar

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