Tuesday, June 4, 2013


Nail-related items that have been bestowed on me over the last year--So many options!

Nail Art has blossomed in new and exciting directions over the last few years. From Katy Perry's Obama-themed nails to Kelly Osborne's $250,000 black diamond manicure, stars, stylists and the style-conscious have entered a new age of self-expression. Fashionable fads in the form of charms, chains, stamps, stickers, tattoos, texture and caviar are stealing thunder from the stylish simplicity of a traditional french manicure. Keep reading for a glimpse into the history of nail art...

Cosmopolitan Magazine image from the Dec. 1936 issue [photo credit: Refinery29]

In the 1920's, glossy car paint inspired Michelle Menard to introduce nail lacquer, replacing the practice of staining nails. The Revson brothers and chemist Charles Lachman teamed up with Menard in the 30's to perfect polish and establish the Revlon Company. Half Moon manicures quickly gained popularity. While ladies of the 30's and 40's were more partial to pinks, reds and neutral colors, other options were surprisingly available. Since then, brands and color choices seem to have multiplied more than ten fold! 

1940's Chen Yu ad with nail color options [photo credit: Elegant Musings] / Screenshot of Essie's extensive product offerings

In the 70's Jeff Pink, founder of Orly minted the term "French Manicure" after popularizing a nail style he brought to Parisian runways and the sets of Hollywood. French manicures held their own from the 70's through the 90's before 3-D nail appliqu├ęs and Minx nail sticker-art started to surface on the stars. In the 80's, Generation X'ers dabbled with neon nails, but by the 90's dark punk polishes and grunge-inspired themes won over. Chanel's Rouge Noir nail color started flying off shelves in 1997 after Uma Thurman wore the color in Pulp Fiction

Uma Thurman in Pulp Fiction (1994) with Chanel Rouge Noir nail polish [source] // Top Left: Rihanna (2008) [source], Bottom Left: Lady Gaga with dark and sharp nails [source] // Top Right: Lil' Mama [source],  Bottom Right: Katy Perry (2013) [source]

Since 2000, a bit of science added to style and imagination have turned nails into custom canvases like never before. Between magnetic nail polish, marbling, flocking, gels, stamping, tattoos and assorted 3-D embellishments, nail art has reached a whole new level of sophistication! Minx changed the playing field in 2007 with a wide assortment of stick-ons and Creative Nail Design introduction of the first gel polish a year later. Since the turn of the century, nail art has reached its heyday with expanding options. Given the chance at the mani-makeover of your dreams, what would you you choose? Stay tuned for an interview with blogger Katy from blognailedit.

Top Left: Metallic Nails [source], Bottom Left: Marble Nails [source], Top Right: Nail Flocking [source], Bottom Right: Nail Stamping [source]


  1. I really love the white nails with beads !!!


    Patsy Marie

    1. Those are flocked nails--fuzzy nails with a somewhat velvety texture!


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