When I feel lacking in creative spark – sort of like I do now, caught somewhere between seasons and holidays – I like to haul out my polish collection and just start playing around. Sometimes my nail experiments – those moments when I just randomly throw any combination of polishes together – don’t yield the most positive of results. I’ve sat back on more than a few occasions and gone, “Well, that’s just crap!” before blighting my efforts from the earth with acetone.
But every now and then I hit on something that’s easy, fun and super cute, and I’m all the better for having just mucked about first for a bit to see what sticks. For this very opalescent-looking manicure, I used two shimmer-enhanced, foil-type polishes in Pantone’s Colors of the Year, pale periwinkle Serenity and baby pink Rose Quartz. Laying down a base of the icy blue, I then topped it with random, nearly-dry brushstrokes in the frosty pink. And that’s pretty much it (save for the tiny silver star studs I added at the very end.) The resulting mani is super pretty, yet somehow still subtle, the purple shimmer in each frosty, foil-type polish blending beautifully for a simply gorgeous look. Love.
Every year Pantone, which is not actually a paint manufacturer, but the creator of a highly proprietary colour-creating system, issues their pick for Color of the Year. Past years’ picks have included orchid purple, emerald and tangerine, with the upcoming year’s choices, ethereal blue Serenity and pale pink Rose Quartz, having already been announced. Last year’s choice, Marsala, proved to be a bit of a controversial one – hard to get folks on board with muted brick red after the previous seasons’ glut of rich, vibrant jewel tones. I don’t recall seeing a lot of marsala manis this past year either, come to think of it.
So what better time, here at the very end of the year, for me to pick up a polish inspired by 2015’s unloved Color of the Year? Better late than never, I say! Actually, I said that for the first time just now. 😉
This is KB Shimmer’s Men Are From Mars-ala, and like all of KB’s holos, it’s a lovely one – the usual gorgeous formulation shot through with a streak of copper-coloured shimmer. Zero complaints on formula, application and finish – rock steady, all.
But that colour (or Color.) I’m unsold. I am without sold! I initially thought I quite liked this VERY brown brick red, but upon closer inspection, it’s not a favourite. And while it’s actually quite flattering against my pale Celtic hide (matches the eight billion freckles that cover it, too) I ultimately find it just a shade too ’90s for my taste. And thanks, but that’s a look I really don’t need to revisit (seriously, why did we think that brown cosmetics everything would produce a “natural” look as opposed to just making us look all smudgy and dirty?) So a pass from me on Men are From Mars-ala, simply because of the colour. I took a chance, and it didn’t pay off. But no doubt I’ll find lots of uses for this polish in all manner of nail art, so fret not for its demise – stay of execution on account of Finding Something Else to Do With the Ugly Thing.
Week one’s challenge prompt in the Nail Art Ideas Linkup was marsala, Pantone’s recently-anointed colour of the year (that would be an earthy, brownish-red to all you philistines.) Being one to never let a horrible groaner of a pun go un-punned, I decided to combine the colour and the concept, adding some holographic chicken drumsticks to Contrary Polish’s “Okay, so it’s not quite marsala, but I swore off brick red makeup back in 1993, so close enough” Beach Blanket. Not quite genuine chicken marsala either (hey look, it’s perfectly good chicken and pasta you destroyed with cheap wine!) but yummy-looking all the same given that it’s nail polish. 😉