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A Nail Art Virgin Gets Experienced

After I wrote my post “Nail Art: Haute or Hood?” last week, I got a ton of tweets from girls saying they didn’t mind that this decades-old black/Latina trend has suddenly become mainstream — don’t most trends come from the street, anyway? Yes, they do. And then I got this email from my girlfriend:

“In the fifteen years I’ve known you, you’ve never done a really bold, ‘tacky chic’ mani. Its time, Tia. Do it for me. Do it for Beauty.”

She’s right — I don’t like polkadots and flowers and rhinestones on my nails. It makes me dizzy. I keep it very basic…every Sunday, I do a polish change in a fun, bright hue, but never anything Earth-shatteringly editorial. I’m just not a Nail Nancy, I’m a Makeup Mary. But yesterday, I converted. I knew exactly where to go for my sassy mani adventure — The Polish Bar of Brooklyn, on Vanderbilt Ave. Tricia Lee, the gorgeous and whip-smart owner, is always ahead of the trends, which is why her nail spas in Prospect Heights and Clinton Hill are a mecca for fashion industry darlings, high-powered corporate cuties, neighborhood hotties and every level of It girl in-between.

Tricia Lee at her fab Polish Bar of Brooklyn

I walked in, presented Tricia with my basic mani and told her to go wild. “Project!” was written all over her face; her eyes sparkled with creativity. Twenty minutes later, I was rocking this Minx and neon teal/purple French manicure hybrid:

Cirque du Soleil swag, courtesy of Minx and China Glaze Nail Polish in Flying Dragon (purple) and Turned Up Turquoise (teal)

It’s sooo far from anything I’ve ever worn in my life, and you know what? I adore it. Love, love, love. I feel like the coolest girl in school. I keep trying to find excuses to point at things! I do feel like maybe I should skip the bright lips while I’m rocking these loud nails, though. I want to look of-the-moment, not like a member of a flying trapeze troupe.

As my nails were drying, I sat down with Tricia for a little chat about nail trends:

SYB: What trends are setting you on fire right now?

TL: I have a personal fascination with snakeskin Minx. And I will tell you why, it reminds me of the sexiest handbags. I love to see nude polishes worked with snakeskin and reptile textures. So subtle, so sexy.

SYB: Which trend would you love to see die?

TL: I loathe the pink and white french manicure, but not as much as iridescent pearl frost manis. I’d rather see you in gloves. Yuck!

SYB: What are your three favorite nail shades of the season?

TL: I love OPI Kiss Me on My Tulips (a stunning bright pink), Zoya Pippa (summery yell0w), and Essie Play Date (beautiful bold lilac)

SYB: And what do you think of nail art becoming mainstream?

TL: Like so many fashion trends, nail art was created in the streets by women looking to express themselves through hair and nails. I love that nail designs have become a fashionable form of self expression. Women now flock to the boldest of colors and play with appliques and textures like we haven’t seen in decades. It’s hot!

Girls, if you’re ever in Brooklyn, you must visit Polish Bar. For more info, check out www.polishbarbrooklyn.com. Big kiss!

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5 Comments

  1. DrennaB
    April 21, 2012 5:13 am 

    Your nails look cute! But to be honest, I really don’t like Polish Bar AT ALL. I think it is really overpriced for the subpar job they do. *of course, if they’re going to be part of The Fly Cut in some way, feel free to delete this…lol*

  2. April 21, 2012 11:15 pm 

    Personally, I’d much rather rock a pink & white french than wild designs & prints on my nails. I prefer either clean nudes or bright color but just never really been one for trends like the stiletto or louboutin mani, minx & all that stuff. Just me.

  3. tea18
    April 22, 2012 6:59 am 

    I adore it all – although i do believe there is a fine line between interestingly creative and tacky. But it kind of seems like “tacky” is the new new. Huh. I can not wait for the perfect moment to rock the black caviar mani tho. Unfortunately, I work in corporate, where toucan Sam nails are still malapropos. So no “bad girls do it well” impulses for me until vacation.

  4. Dawn Danielle
    April 23, 2012 10:14 pm 

    I’m glad you stepped out of your comfort zone. It looks awesome!