Tuesday, 8 July, 2008

Women's Cosmetic Friends:Therapeutic Nail Polishes

Ok, Tuesday morning sees me slightly better. Come Tuesday I no longer think that the world is coming to an end and I am the worst hit person, who has the shittiest life, whose guardian angel is absconding etc etc etc. With Monday doldrums over, I feel almost human, well stress is on almost.
Yesterday in an effort to cheer myself up I did several things. Out of which the most harmless was putting nail polish. This is a safe way to cheer yourself up, you don't spend money, there are nail polish bottles always at home and nor do you get fat (ok fatter) in the process. And at the end you have nice looking fingers which you can admire discreetly. I have this thing since childhood, whenever I put on nail polish I feel that my hands are no longer mine, but someone else's.
Now nail polish is something which every woman wears and shares with friends and cousins, but we do talk about it? I am not sure, I have never much conversed about it, except maybe discussed a shade at times. But nail polishes have always been part of my life ever since I realised I was a girl. I don't exactly remember... was it before I figured out that I am a girl or after? Ok cheekiness aside...after all this is being written for public consumption.
Anyways to get back, my rich roomie has recently picked up four new shades. Though I applied her newly acquired caramel, I am so tired of these browns and beiges. Now I think it is time for me to get back some pink (hopefully hot) in my life.
Pre teen and early teen I used to get a lot of nail polishes as presents (you know birthdays, bhaiphotas, rakhis etc) and they all used to be baby pink. Somehow all my friends, cousins or aunts picking up gifts for my cousins to gift me thought baby pink was my colour. Urggghhhhhhhh it could not be further from the truth--I think baby pink is the most disgusting colour ever to be discovered in the extended vibgyor family, it is so naka (Bong word meaning-- cant explain) and pseudo feminine (whatever that means I don't know). And I had about twenty to twenty five bottles of baby pink nail polish over a period of three/four years from Lakme. Late eighties and very early nineties in India there were only Lakme and Tips & Toes nail polishes worth buying, rest were too tacky. My mother had put the fear of rotting nails into my heart very firmly. Her logic is if you apply cheap local nail polish your nails are going to rot and never ever be nice again. So I always stuck to Lakme. Anyways with so many baby pink nail polishes from the same company in my possession I started to hate the colour baby pink with a passion. I remember initially passing on the bottles to cousins, friends, maids whoever was ready to take them off me, and then finally just throwing away the rest.
Then I launched into my teen ages and simultaneously came Elle Eighteen and these were cheap (but not about to rot your nails, since they were Lakme's), oh-so-affordable and lovely. You could try colours like liliac, mauve, coffee, fudge and things like glitters and stars. Those were such great discoveries. But along with the good bits, came the bad ones. Along with it a craze for black/blue/grey/green nail colours started...I just cannot explain to women how disgusting they look with their nails coloured thus. It is totally unaesthetic and unappealing, if being a woman I feel revolted, I wonder how the poor men fare. Imagine a man holding a woman's hand with her fingers coloured bottle green. Urghhhh...its a hand or a tree branch???
Another brand which made entry around the same time was Revlon. But Rev dear was international and high priced, so you had to make your earning cousin gift it to you. I remember my thrill over my first bottle of Rev. But then Rev had launched only their jumbo sized bottles in India and soon I was bored with the colour as it was not finishing, however much I applied it or bulldoze others to apply it.
By the time India got totally liberal and Maybeline, Avon, Oriflame et al. hit Indian market, I was in college. Liberalisation of the country's market brought huge choices for the nail polish lovers. Brands like Lakme started fashion designers launch new colours etc. Along came the concept of colour bars, though I have never been inside one. But I have seen friends doing designs on their nails and then not being able to use their hands, terrified that their new nail design would get tampered. As if applying mehendi was not bad enough, another torture added. I tell you, we women positively love torturing ourselves. Another nice thing is that french manicure thing which companies have come out with-- since I always lag behind in these things, I am yet to try this one out as well.
Now I usually pick up Avon nail colours which come in small, quick finish bottles, so that you don't get stuck with one colour for ever.
Sweet nail polish you are one of our (women's) cosmetic friends...please do keep up the good job, but heaven forbid don't turn baby pink on me.


  1. Hey finally commenting. I too thought my hands don't look mine when my nails get painted. Even now I keep noticing my own hands and toes whenever polished and keep staring at them as men would stare at women forgetting rest of the world is looking at you staring. But Baby Pink is so good, that colour is capable of making me look less aggressive and more female :)

  2. Hey it works.....you know how ill I have been the last few weeks. Anyway once I was through with the current dose of anti-biotics, I was feeling much better and decided to give myself a treat. Got my self a manicure and a pedicure with nail polish and wowie......I feel like a totally different person. Think it helps me feel better. Had read this post sometime ago and decided to give my limbs a makeover and it worked. Am applying nail polish on my finger nails after almost two years!!!

  3. aatreyee, next time someone gives me a bottle of pink nail polish i will definitely pass it to you. ;)

  4. hey muthu, so nice....keep it up and i know you are a super busy human being with everything going on in your life, but please do pamper urself from time to time and certainly apply nail polish a bit more frequently than 2 years!!!!!!!....


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