Rich White People Problems

I'm dealing with my latest "problem", which really isn't a problem. It's just one of those things that annoy rich white women and we call it a problem. My nail polish shelf is overcrowded.

First of all, yes, I installed a special shelf on the side wall of my bathroom closet just for my nail polish when I first moved into the house. It gives my closet a salon-y vibe and I like to see the colors arrayed neatly to make it easy to select just the right one. But over the years, the shelf has gotten overcrowded. It was just the right size for ythe number of bottles I owned in 2003, but I have been adding new ones faster than I've been using up the old ones.

Before I had children and was still up in NYC at least once a month if not more, I always had my nails done in a salon. Once W was born we sold the city condo and lived full-time out here in the sticks. A 30-minute manicure turns into a 1.5 hour affair when you drive 30 minutes each way to get to the salon. I could shorten the time by staying in Crozet, but then I'd be paying more for worse service (from what I've heard, I haven't actually tried getting my nails done at the rural salon just because of the price issue). At first when I stopped going to the salon, I just stopped having polished nails. So the overcrowding on the nail polish shelf didn't register with me.

But now, three years and another child later, I'm really ready to start getting my looks back, and good grooming helps. So I'm keeping up with my own nail maintenance when I can't make it conveniently to a salon. And the state of my nail polish shelf has become a major annoyance. Enough so that I'm finally doing something about it.

At first, I planned to just give away all the colors I deem no longer age-appropriate. But when I went through, there really are only a couple of bottles that would fit into that category. I still have a bottle of Urban Decay's Pigeon color that is a pretty accurate match of the tealish blue of the typical NYC bird. I wore that when I was younger and edgier and rocking the "downtown pretty" look in the city. So there's one color I might retire. And dark reds with bluish undertones aren't as flattering on older-looking hands since they draw attention to any veins that show. My hands aren't too bad, actually, but I've found that many of the darker colors seem to be aging, so I tend to avoid them anyway. So I have a few darker colors that have fallen out of my favor. But mostly, I still like the colors that I have, so giving them away isn't the solution.

Instead, I'm embarking on a rigorous quality-control mission. Each week I'll use a different color, and any polishes that are flawed will be discarded. I got rid of one bottle last week. I'd held off on buying a new bottle of a color I tried in the salon that I really liked because I knew I had a very similar color at home. But when I used it last week, the paint didn't go on smoothly, took too long to dry, and chipped early. It was very, very old polish. I'd venture AT LEAST ten years old. So out it went. Now, it didn't advance the overcrowding solution since I immediately went out and bought that new color I had my eye on (Nomad's Dream by OPI, I love it!). But now that I have a plan, the issue should resolve itself over time. Within year, I figure, maybe sooner. I reserve the right to not judge colors out of season ,which is why it could take a while. The light is different in the summer and the winter, not to mention skin tone and wardrobe, and all these things impact color perception. But I have plenty of spring and summer colors to start with. Already I'm having fun since the one I tried this week looks great and seems durable. Since I have a surplus, I resolve to only keep the colors that make me very happy. If I'm indifferent to them (or worse, vaguely dissatisfied), then out they go. Although if they are still in good condition I'll be happy to give them away to a new home. There are a few teenaged girls around here that might be interested but if any of my readers want to try some new colors for free just let me know and I'll hand out bottles when I see people.