Makeup facts: the history of nail polish

Butter London The Black Knight, Orly Prelude to a Kiss, Chanel Delicatesse, Dior (duo), OPI Topcoat, MAC Submerged, Essie Sialnd Hopping, Anny red Inspiration, China Glaze Gossip over gimlets, Ciate Antique Brooch, Illamasqua Harem, Tony Moly

Hello, gorgeous!

What a special occasion without beautiful nails? What a holiday without funny nail polish? What a statement nail color without you favorite nail brand? We all love and use nail polish to make our nails more beautiful, to create the new look or to express ourselves. Do you know that nail polish is probably the oldest makeup product in the world? And our ancestors were using it for exactly the same purposes.

First nail coloring techniques date back to 3000 BC when first attempts to use color on nails originated in China. Emperor dynasties were using nail polish to emphasize their position in the society. The Zhou dynasty was using silver and gold colors on their nails to distinguish themselves from the rest of population. The preference in colors then transformed to red and black as royal colors. Aristocrats and noble people of that time were the only ones allowed to use nail polish on their nails. Moreover, long, colored nails were a symbol of the noble origin of their bearers.

The popularity of nail polish spread very fast to India through Middle East finally reaching another cultural center in Africa – Egypt, the age of Cleopatra, who afterwards popularized nail coloring. Men and women in Egypt preferred to have their nails colored, more commonly in red. Even though the technique of coloring nails differed much from the Chinese one, the nail polish still remained the prerogative and right of aristocrats and nobles. And most popular color was also red, as Egyptians were using henna (brown-red color) for their nails.

Anny Red Inspiration
Anny Red Inspiration

But centuries later the art of nail coloring was long forgotten and only reborn in the more or less modern Europe – in France in late 1870s. Nail polish returned to the European fashion due to high demand in manicured nails among the European aristocracy. The name ‘nail polished’ was created due to popular procedure of polishing nails with oils and buffs that were supposed to give shine to the nails of those fashionable men and women.

The first nail polish in the bottled liquid form was created in the beginning of the XXth century in United States, that made nail polish extremely popular both in Europe and States, that resulted in a cascade of new enterprises creating nail polishes and related products and marked the birth of new production sphere and makeup routine for many men and women all over the world. First nail polishes were primarily pinks and reds, but Revlon brought many more new colors in 1932 with the use of pigments that was a huge leap forward in the industry.

Anny Red Inspiration, Chanel Delicatesse, Essie Island Hopping, Dior Pink Porcelain
Anny Red Inspiration, Chanel Delicatesse, Essie Island Hopping, Dior Pink Porcelain

Nowadays there are plenty of colors, effects and textures in the nail polishes that opens extreme opportunities to express your personality via coloringย yourย nails. Beautiful polished nails became an inevitable attribute of good looks nowadays. And, by the way, the most popular color for nails still remains red. Isn’t tit just admirable?

What is your favorite nail polish brand? Your favorite color or type of manicure? Why do you like coloring your nails? I would love to hear your answers!

My favorite nail polish brand is Essie (amazing colors and quality), my favorite nail color is mauve (so trendy, isn’t it? and still kind of reddish-pink) and I love to color my nails because it makes them look longer (like in ancient China), beautiful and healthy.

Thank you very much for your attention.

Have an amazing day!

Hugs and kisses,

Dorothea

Butter London The Black Knight, Orly Prelude to a Kiss, Chanel Delicatesse, Dior (duo), OPI Topcoat, MAC Submerged, Essie Sialnd Hopping, Anny red Inspiration, China Glaze Gossip over gimlets, Ciate Antique Brooch, Illamasqua Harem, Tony Moly
Butter London The Black Knight, Orly Prelude to a Kiss, Chanel Delicatesse, Dior (duo), OPI Topcoat, MAC Submerged, Essie Sialnd Hopping, Anny red Inspiration, China Glaze Gossip over gimlets, Ciate Antique Brooch, Illamasqua Harem, Tony Moly
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Author: dorotheabeauty

INSPIRATION | MAKEUP | LIFESTYLE

4 thoughts

  1. Wow, I didn’t know nail polish had such an extensive history! I really like Essie as well. I also like Butter London and Formula X. And Julep! There’s so many good nail polishes on the market!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you so much for posting this! It was strangely exactly what I was looking to read! I painted my nails today and kept wondering about the history behind it, how did this become a thing, and you answered it! Amazing post! Dark brown-reds are my favorites!

    Liked by 1 person

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