There was a time when nail polish was just that— something you used to paint your nails a different color. Back then, the choices were also fairly few: bright red, nude and French-tipped.
It wasn’t until Chanel released its now iconic shade Vamp via the cult classic film “Pulp Fiction” that the fashion world and women in general began to take serious notice. Vamp flew off the shelves and started a revolution in the beauty industry.
Years later, Chanel released a new shade, Black Satin. It wasn’t exactly groundbreaking, but there was something about its opaqueness and high shine that made it a standout black.
Later, other iconic shades from Chanel were released and became instant hits as well: Blue Satin (a regal blue); Jade (a lovely, almost-pastel green); Particuliére (the perfect tan); Vendetta (a glossy deep purple); Dragon (a classic red); and more recently, a flattering white called Eastern Light.
Other brands have followed suit by releasing a myriad hues every season, some even inspired by celebrities. Ciaté recently collaborated with fashion It girl Olivia Palermo, while designer Victoria Beckham released two limited-edition shades with the brand Nails Inc.
There are also collections released to coincide with movie openings such asOPI’s “50 Shades of Grey” sets.
Aside from colors, nail formulas for both prepping and aftercare have evolved tremendously. Before nail polish application, there are new and improved base coats which don’t just protect nails but also ensure your polish will stay chip-free for a longer period of time.
My faves are Ciaté’s Underwear, Deborah Lippmann’s Gel Lab and OPI’s Nail Envy, which is actually a nail treatment.
I’ve found that Nail Envy works well as a base coat because it smoothens ridges and keeps my nails from turning brittle over time.
We also now have a nail serum called Locycare which—I can attest to this as I’ve tried it myself—packs nails with enough hydration to restore them to their original healthy appearance. The breakthrough formula prevents and improves yellow-stained tips.
The only setback? You must refrain from wearing nail polish for a minimum of two weeks. I gladly did this, as my nails desperately needed a cure for all the years I subjected them to nonstop polish wearing.
Based on past runway shows and editorials here and abroad, I think it’s safe to say that nail polish has found its rightful place not just in the beauty world but in fashion as well.
Painted nails are an easy and inexpensive way to transform your look or dress up an outfit; the best part is that it allows you to be up-to-date on trends with just one easy swipe.
Tomorrow, I’ll be painting my nails a sheer nude, an ode to the ultrachic Valentino Spring 2015 show which blew me away; and I will make sure to post it on my Instagram account devoted to my love for nail polish, @mizmanos. So, go ahead, paint on and discover the wonderful new world of nail lacquer appreciation.