As you could probably guess from my author photo at the top right, I love all things turquoise and teal. It’s one of those colors that I can’t help but feel cheered up when I see it. Turquoise is strangely versatile. It reminds me of tropical oceans and of being in the Mojave desert as a kid, running my fingers over black veined polished stones.
Turquoise was one of the first gemstones humans wore. How could they resist? Beads made of turquoise have been found dating back as far as 5000 BCE. Turquoise was worn by the pharaohs of ancient Egypt. We wouldn’t want to break with tradition, now would we?
Turquoise works well with all skin tones and pairs best with tans, white, black, rich deep pinks, corals, and oranges.
If you love nail polish features curated by color check out my best gold nail polish, best wedding nail polish, and best bridal nail polish for summer wedding colors, best glitter nail polish shades, and best holographic nail polish colors posts.
1. Best Breathable Turquoise Nail Polish: Brandis by Julep
Brandis from Julep’s Boho Glam collection is a turquoise cream polish. The formula is a little on the thick side but it’s opaque in one coat which is fantastic. I always recommend doing the minimum two coats anyway so you get that true depth of the pigment. Brandis is part of Julep’s breathable nail polish line which is formulated to have a structure strong enough to be long lasting but porous enough to allow oxygen to reach your nails. This is great for people who find that their nails feel healthier when they have a break between polishes.
Check with your local religious leaders to be sure, but breathable nail polish is often considered acceptable for Muslim people to keep on their hands during prayer which is much more convenient than having to take polish off and then put it back on again. To get the benefits of breathable polish, you’ll need a breathable base coat and breathable top coat like Julep’s Oxygen Smoothing Base Coat and Julep Go the Distance Oxygen Performance Top Coat. This lacquer is five free, vegan, and contains green coffee extract and hexanal to strengthen your nails.
- Creamy and heavily pigmented
- Breathable nail polish
- Five free
- Contains nourishing ingredients like green coffee extract
- Need an oxygen top and base coat to get the benefits
2. Best Long Lasting Turquoise Nail Polish: Garden Variety by Essie
Garden Variety is from essie’s Flowerista Spring Collection but I’ll definitely wear this color all year long. This is a color that seems to shift a lot in the light. It can come across as a little blue in bad lighting but really shines as a teal when the light hits it. The formula is very easy to work with and is almost opaque at one coat. I think it’s meant to be a cream polish but it has more of a crelly formula, meaning it is somewhere between a cream and a jelly. There’s a hint of translucence, but is completely opaque in two coats. The only thing about Garden Variety is that it stains. If you don’t wear a good base coat, your nails could be bluish for a while. If you’re not sure which base coats are great for protecting against staining, see my guide to the best base coats for nail polish. As an essie polish, this one is much longer lasting than lower quality polishes and is three free.
- Three free
- Long lasting
- Opaque in two coats
- Great formula
- Stains your nails without a good base coat
3. Best Light Turquoise Nail Polish: Eternally Turquoise by OPI
This creamy polish by OPI is the lightest turquoise on the list. Eternally Turquoise is a light mint that can appear baby blue under artificial lights. It’s certainly on the blue side of teal, but those hints of green are there. It’s opaque in two coats, not streaky, and the formula is easy to work with. As part of OPI’s Infinite Shine line, this lacquer boasts gel-like shine and staying power when used as part of the Infinite Shine System of top coat and base coat. While it probably won’t last you 14 days like a gel manicure, for most people it will extend your manicure past a week which is pretty impressive.
- Long lasting
- Pale turquoise
- Not streaky
- Can come across as blue in the wrong light
- Needs matching top and base coat for full staying power
4. Best Low Toxin Turquoise Nail Polish: Wednesday by Zoya
Wednesday is a really beautiful sea green turquoise polish with a cream finish. It has a slight hint of grey to it that gives it a very vintage feel. This slight faded turquoise look also increases its wearability and versatility by bringing it down from being a full pastel. The formula is great though it definitely needs two coats to be opaque. Wednesday is 10 free which is about as nontoxic as nail polish can get.
- 10 free
- Versatile faded turquoise color
- Buttery cream finish
- A little streaky on the first coat
- Not Zoya’s best brush
5. Best Luxuryy Turquoise Nail Polish: Slapper by Butter London
Slapper is a bit of a chameleon. It comes across as blue in most photography, but is a true teal. Are you noticing a pattern here? In person, butter LONDON’s Slapper is a vibrant turquoise that really stands out. It has a soft, creamy finish and is opaque in two coats. The formula isn’t streaky and will last you close to a week. This lacquer is eight free and contains hydrolyzed silk, horsetail extract, calcium, and vitamins A, E, C, and B5 to nourish and strengthen nails.
- Eight free
- Contains strengthening botanicals
- Long lasting
- Luxury brand
- Will stain your nails so you need a base coat
- Will sometimes photograph blue
6. Best Antifungal Turquoise Nail Polish: Trusting Turquoise by Dr.’s Remedy Enriched Nail Polish
This is a brilliant turquoise with benefits. Dr.’s Remedy is a foot care brand started by podiatrists whose patients kept asking which nail polish was safest for problem toes. So they made one. All of the their Enriched Nail Polish are about as toxin free as you can get and contain tea tree oil and garlic bulb extract to kill bacteria, fungi, and viruses before they can cause problems. It also contains vitamins E and C, hydrolyzed wheat protein, and lavender to nourish and strengthen your nails. For best results you’ll want to use this with the Dr.’s Remedy two in one top and base coat which contains biotin, tea tree, and kale. The Dr.’s Remedy nail polish remover was featured in my best nail polish removers guide.
- Formulated by board certified podiatrists
- Fungus fighting ingredients
- Contains strengthening botanicials
- Needs matching base coat for best results
7. Best Fast Drying Turquoise Nail Polish: Dynamite Teal by Jessica
Here we have a true minty turquoise green by Jessica Cosmetics. Dynamite Teal pops on all skin tones and works beautifully with nail art designs. It’s a thick cream polish that’s opaque in two thin coats but not so thick that it’s difficult to work with. This is a bold turquoise that stays true to itself in any light. I love that it’s seven free as well as vegan and cruelty-free. It can be a little matte for some but Jessica’s top coat and base coats formulated for specific nail problems were both featured in my best top coats for long lasting nail polish and best base coats guides.
- Seven free
- Salon grade brand
- Fast drying
- Vegan and cruelty-free
- May stain without a good base coat
8. Best Overall Turquoise Nail Polish: Turquoise & Caicos by Essie
Turquoise & Caicos is from essie’s Summer Resort Collection and is perfect for a tropical summer look. It’s a beautiful sea green color that I would cover my apartment in if I could. The formula is a little sheer for a cream polish and you’re going to want three coats to be completely opaque though I’d argue that it’s wearable at two coats. Make sure you give this one a good shake or roll in your hands to distribute the pigments throughout the formula. It’s worth the three coats for this beautiful sea foam color with essie’s staying power.
- Three free
- Intensely sea green
- Smooth, creamy finish
- Needs three coats
9. Best Matte Turquoise Nail Polish:: ILF by ManGlaze
Next is ILF by ManGlaze. This is an idie nail company making nail polish targeted at men. The two founders came up with the idea while supremely drunk and here we are. ILF is a dusty turquoise that dries matte, like all ManGlaze lacquers, and with almost a chalkboard finish. There is some hidden metallic in there so if you top this with a glossy top coat you’ll bring out a little bit of sparkle. Without a glossy topper, you’d never know. I think it’s a fun and unique spin on turquoise nail polish that’s definitely attention grabbing. ManGlaze polishes tend to be on the raunchy side so if you’re easily offended, skip browsing their other colors names. But if you’re like me, their polish names will have you cracking up.
I feel it’s important for me to say that I think it’s great there’s a nail polish line appealing to a more masculine aesthetic. That’s important and good and there’s no reason they shouldn’t. However, I can’t sign off on the idea that this is the nail polish for guys. All nail polish is for guys and this polish is for all genders too. Fingernails aren’t gender specific and the colors you paint on them will work whether you’re a woman, man, neither, both, or anything in between. So I’m all about a polish brand that expresses a masculine vibe, but only as long as it isn’t reinforcing outdated gender constrictions that punish men for also picking up a bottle of essie. (Come on, who can resist the essie?)
- Rated 4.5 out of five stars by users on Amazon
- Unique matte, dusty turquoise
- Fun packaging and masculine brand art
- Long lasting for a matte
- Has a metallic sparkle if you add a glossy top coat
- Raunchy branding and color names are not for everyone
10. Best Cruelty Free Turquoise Nail Polish: Age of Aquarius by Color Club
I love how bright this is that it’s almost neon. Full disclosure, I am an Aquarius, but I’m fairly certain that’s not why I’m in love with this shade. This juicy turquoise is perfect for spring and summer. Age of Aquarius is stunning, bold, and fun. This lacquer by Color Club is three free, vegan, cruelty-free, and will last you a few days before chipping. It is still a little transparent at two coats, so you’ll want to do three to be fully opaque.
- Rated 4.9 out of five stars by users on Amazon
- Three free
- Chip resistant
- Needs a good top coat
- Needs two to three coats