Two stand out from the pack, and both hit in the mid-1990s: Chanel’s Vamp, a deep burgundy, and Hard Candy’s Sky, a light blue. Both commanded a cult following at the time of their debut, and both look just as fresh when applied to nails years later.
I was reminded of Vamp when I tried Essie’s Carry On from its Fall 2011 collection. This dark hue looked so clean and polished—pun intended—on my hands and offered a contrast from the sheer and metallic colors I often wear because they are said to show chips less. Instant glamour!
A similar experience was from Essie’s Summer 2011 Bridal collection. Borrowed & Blue had that dreamy, creamy color pioneered by Hard Candy with its launch. I remember mixing White Out and Wet & Wild metallic royal blue to make a DIY replication in college before springing for an actual bottle of the good stuff. And yes, I still have my signature Hard Candy plastic ring that was the bonus with purchase!