I have something I call the “Shame” Drawer in my little office. Nestled away next to books, my photo equipment, and mailing supplies… a candy-colored addiction hides in plain sight. Some people might covet my little drawer, and others (like my husband) might not understand it. It’s my nail polish collection.
Obviously, I’m not that ashamed by it, since I share nail colors every Friday and I’m showing it to you right now. But I do look at it from time to time and wonder how it grew so large.
So, the truth is that I was a nail-biter when I was a kid. It was horrible. I remember sitting in my fifth-grade classroom just gnawing away on my little stubs of nails. After the millionth time I tried to quit the habit, I decided to paint my nails pretty colors to deter myself from ruining my hands. I actually had a small collection then, too — cheap mini bottles that I could get for a dollar or two at the mall. I painted elaborate scenes on my hands: the desert, under the sea (with fish), mer-people, palm trees, stripes. It helped! I stopped biting my nails and to this day I haven’t restarted the habit. Go me.
All the painting had turned my nails yellow and brittle (I didn’t know about base coats then). Since my bad habit was broken, I stopped painting my nails. The manicure I had on my wedding day was one of only a handful I’d had in a decade.
There was a period of time when Walt and I weren’t bringing in much money. But — I don’t know if this is just a me thing, or if it’s something that only my friends do, or what — I wanted to treat myself with something nice and pretty. Nothing expensive like fun shoes, or low-quality clothes (even an inexpensive dress would be more than $10), but something really nice and colorful, that made me feel happy. Nail polish seemed to be the best answer. A standard bottle of a quality brand like OPI or China Glaze is $8 at the most. I decided to buy a bottle every time I scheduled a consultation with a potential client — even if they didn’t book me for their wedding, I’d made enough progress in my business that I’d been noticed and considered, and that was cause enough for celebration. I can usually tell you which bottle corresponds to which couple. Emily and Bill inspired me to get a bottle of bronze copper polish, for instance. Rachelle and Stephen had me go out and buy Secret Periwinkle.
Somehow, after a while, the flood of emails became so thick that I didn’t go out after every meeting to buy a celebratory nail polish. Every once in a while I’d go buy a handful to “keep up” with the imagined numbers in my head. I became aware of collections from certain brands — Bohemian Collection! Germany Collection! And the Bond 007 Collection is coming out very soon…
I’m trying to stop, though. Soon enough all the colors will be too similar to each other anyway. Or so I tell myself. And glitter is annoying to remove.
What’s your favorite color of nail polish? :)