Is There a Perfect Engagement Manicure?

There is one thing that can almost certainly cheer us up no matter the time of year: romantic engagement announcements. There's just something so magical about seeing our social feeds plastered with happy couples sharing their latest relationship milestone. But if you're anything like us, in addition to the mesmerizing jewelry, you're probably also taking in all of the engagement manicures.

There are no hard-and-fast rules for what color or nail art you should be wearing when your significant other pops the big question. As with all things in the beauty realm, the choice is completely yours.

"An engagement manicure to me is whatever you want it to be," Rachel Apfel Glass, founder of Glosslab, tells POPSUGAR. "Pick your favorite color, design, or shape. It should be all about you and your preferences."

However, if you are a planner and want expert tips on how to nail your own engagement manicure, there are a few guidelines you can follow. "I personally love a classic french, light pink, or any neutral color so it complements your ring," Apfel Glass says. "You can also get an engagement manicure that is in tune with the season. For example, in the spring or summer, you can add in a light purple option, and for fall and winter, maybe even opt for a chrome."

While Apfel Glass likes to err on the side of subtle and understated for an engagement-nail look, she does have a few head-turning colors and fun nail-art ideas that she stands by. "A red manicure is another classic for engagements," Apfel Glass says. "I also really like an accent design on the ring finger for some extra fun — think a white flower or a pale pink heart."

Whether you are a DIY type of person or have your nail-salon appointments on a strict schedule, there are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to your engagement nails. "First, always start by cleaning and shaping your nails as desired," Apfel Glass says. This process should include filing, buffing, and cleaning up your cuticles — all the steps necessary for any basic manicure. Should you choose a more complicated nail technique such as Gel-X, for example, it will also include using a primer and dehydrator and prepping both your nails and the tips by roughing up the surface of the nails. Apfel Glass also recommends keeping your at-home manicures waterless. "This is a practice I always suggest," she says. "It is the best way to avoid germs and nail breakage." Once you've properly prepared your nails, apply your preferred color as usual, and you'll be ready to go.

Whether you're celebrating your own big news or admiring all the engagement manicures on your Instagram feed, you can never have too much inspiration for the special day. Take a closer look at a few of the engagement manicures worth a spot on your Pinterest board ahead.