20 October Nail Ideas for a Moody, Autumnal Manicure

Close up of a mismatched manicure in various prints and shades of brown, black, and white


October is officially here (where has the time gone?!), which means you may be looking for the perfect moody mani to rock during the spooky season. But as much as we enjoy a seasonal nail look, we also understand that not everyone wants to lean into Halloween with pumpkins and ghosts on their nails.

With this in mind, we set out to find plenty of pretty nail art ideas for October—none of which feature kitschy accents. Instead, you can look forward to earthy, neutral tones, creative black-and-white combinations, witchy purple creations, and more. Check them out below.

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Neon Halloween Nails

Neon Halloween Nails With an Art Deco-Inspired Design


Lime green, black, and orange are classic Halloween colors, but in this art deco-inspired stripe design, they're giving more "chic manicure" than "kiddy holiday nail look." We're here for it.

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Autumn Squiggle Nails

Autumn squiggle nails with dark green and warm brown accents


Squiggle and swirl negative space nails have been extremely popular all year. To bring them into fall, get them in autumn-inspired shades, like chocolate brown and spruce green.

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Earthy Abstract Riverbed Nails

An earthy, abstract manicure in shades of neutrals


October is the first full month of fall, so it's the perfect time to lean all the way into the neutral, earthy palette associated with the season. Here, you can see how an abstract approach to stripes can create a truly unique manicure.

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Vixen Red Nails

Vixen Red Almond-Shaped Nails


You can never go wrong with blood-red polish in October. Rather than any old red manicure, consider copying this jelly version, which gives it an unexpected twist.

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Clueless Cocoa Nails

Clueless Cocoa plaid nails


Checkerboard nails continue to be popular for fall 2023, as do plaid. This argyle take on the look is perfect for autumn and even nods at the Clueless trend from earlier this year.

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Earthy Abstract Mismatched Nails

Earthy Abstract Nails with shades of olive, pumpkin, cream, and charcoal


Another way to incorporate earthy tones into your nail look is with a mismatched design. We like the looks of this one, which features trendy grid detailing and hints of pumpkin spice on a convenient short length.

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Black Drip Tips

Black Drip Abstract French Tips on a neutral base


Forget about a bloody drip October nail look: This abstract black-tip nail art idea creates a similar vibe without evoking the gore. As for the thumb accent—that's an actual nail piercing.

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Pumpkin Spice Nails

Pumpkin Spice Abstract Flora Nails


You may not want to rock actual pumpkins on your nails, but there's nothing kitschy about the seasonal color. While there are many pumpkin-inspired nail polishes out there, OPI Nail Lacquer ($12) in the shade Suzi Needs A Loch-Smith is particularly popular.

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Amethyst Crystal Marble Nails

Amethyst Marble Crystal Nails in shades of purple with gold details


For a witchy vibe without incorporating any little faces or black cats into your nail look, consider a crystal-inspired manicure. This sparkly purple nail look is meant to look like an amethyst geode. Stunning, no?

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Autumn Floral Nails

Autumn Floral Nails with caramel, burgundy, black, and evergreen accents


If you're not ready to say farewell to your favorite floral nail art, don't fret. You can upgrade the look for the season by getting your blooms painted in fall-friendly shades like terracotta, burgundy, and evergreen.

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Abstract Blob Chrome Nails

Abstract Blob Chrome Nails in shades of orange, silver, and white


Orange and silver are popular Halloween colors, but they really pop in a trendy chrome nail look with matte blobs.

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Earthy Green Digits

A solid green manicure with square tips


Let this be your reminder that a gorgeous October manicure doesn't require nail art. Case in point: This mossy green stunner. For a similar look, try using the Olive & June Long-Lasting Nail Polish in the shade WKF ($9).

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Mossy French Tips

Mossy square-shaped French Tips


Remember that mossy green polish from above? It looks fab when incorporated into a square micro French mani.

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Ember French Tips

Ember French Tips


Speaking of French manicures, there's always the option to swap out your white tips for a squash tone fitting for fall. Try the Londontown Lakur Enhanced Colour ($16) in Bee's Knees on a trendy short almond shape.

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Autumn Check

Autumn Check Nails in a charcoal gray and terracotta palette


Brown and green polish work together fabulously in checkerboard form. Here, the green tone borders on bluish-gray, creating an even moodier end look.

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Black Squiggle Tips

A neutral manicure with squiggly black tips


The wiggly black lines of this oval-shaped nail look give off a creepy, sinister vibe—all while looking chic as can be. The picture-perfect base of this manicure was created using The Gel Bottle Inc.'s BIAB #19 ($16).

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Moody Opal Nails

Moody Opal Nails in shades of blue, pink, and purple


Here's another witchy nail art idea. This pale opal manicure, complete with gold glitter detailing, looks fit for a magical encounter.

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Magical Chrome Nails

Magical Chrome Nails


If you like the idea of a solid manicure but prefer a bit more glam, consider swapping out your regularly glossy finish for a chrome dusting. Here, black nails were overlaid with rainbow chrome powder to create a metallic oxblood set.

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Eggplant Aura Nails

Eggplant Aura Nails in shades of purple


Aura nails have emerged as one of the year's biggest nail trends. Here, see how the design looks especially mystical in moody purple hues perfect for Halloween.

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Abstract Spooky Nails

Abstract Black and White Spooky Nails in various designs


Last but not least, we have this fun mismatched black-and-white nail look. Complete with gemstones, French tips, and aura accents, it's one October nail look sure to turn heads.

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