On a mission to find a new nail polish to add to my beauty arsenal, I discovered an uber chic brand called ‘Tini Beauty with Nailtini, Liptini, and Eyetini beauty lines. The company started in 2004, when Michelle Olson founded Nailtini, a line of nail polishes in an array of hues with cocktail themes and monikers such as ‘On the Rocks’ and ‘Sugar Rim’ and hues ranging from a pearlescent white to a glossy black. She got the idea after mixing polishes for her wedding.
I recently caught up with Olson for an exclusive e-interview to discuss her new Nailtini ‘Feeling Grey’ Collection inspired by the upcoming film Fifty Shades of Grey and get tips on achieving the perfect mani.
Why a cocktail theme?
I was always into mixing, blending and customizing colors. When I worked for a haircare company, a famous hair stylist did a demo and introduced me to the term ‘cocktailing’ which was used for mixing different products such as hair gel and styling cream to create a desired effect. That term resonated with me and was the germ of the idea that turned into Nailtini cocktails for nails. Naming shades after cocktails was a fun natural extension that fit perfectly with the process.
What sets Nailtini apart from the rest?
We were among, if not the first, premium brand to 3-free, starting out of the gate without DBP, which was in most US brands at the time – we’ve since gone 5-free. But what really sets us apart is our unique blend of color, quality and process. We “deconstructed” polish so you could reconstruct it in your own desired way. You want a classic red creme for the week – we have that in ‘Bloody Mary’ (above). You want to add sparkle or iridescence for a night out? Add a topper like ‘Spritzer‘ or ‘Blue Flame.’ Cocktailing gives you so many more options and looks at your fingertips and can be as simple or as complicated as you like. We always say, “Great straight or mixed.”
Tell us about the “Fifty Shades of Grey” Inspired Collection.
Yes, such a fun concept! Two greys – a shimmer and a creme called ‘Grey Daze’ and ‘Stormy Weather’ – and of course ‘Bloody Mary’ for the red room of pain. It’s such a great palette with the red against the greys. We have created a power suit mani of tone on tone pinstripes with the greys and a bloody mary accent. (‘Feeling Grey‘ pictured above)
What is ‘The Lacquer Cabinet’?
I had collaborated with designers and artists on lip and nail collections in the past and always loved the breath of fresh air and creativity that collaboration provides. And it really does make me feel so happy to help someone’s vision come to life. Lacquer Cabinet gave Nailtini the chance to work with some of the industry’s most creative and dedicated nail-philes and beauty experts by inviting them behind the bar to come up with their own nail cocktails. We work closely together to make the end result something unique, quality and fitting with the nailtini concept.
If you could create a collection for someone, who would it be?
This might sound silly, as well as date me, but I would love to do a collection for the original Charlie’s Angels. They personified glamour, beauty and strength, which was a novel combination at the time and I loved it! Plus they were a trio and very different, which I love in a collection. I’d have a clean milky white for Sabrina, a sultry deep red for Kelly, and a sparkly golden sheer for Jill – that you could wear over either.
What’s your favorite cocktail?
My go-to for cooler months is Southern Comfort with grapefruit juice. But lately, I’m all about the cucumber. Love Cucumber Collins or martinis with elderflower. So fresh and clean.
If you were a chic spy agent, what would be your code name?
Chameleon! Ever changing yet still the same, fits in anywhere, and all about the color.
Olson shares tips from Nailtini’s celebrity manicurist Elsbeth:
- Clean nail plate with acetone just before polishing. It removes all surface oils and particles and makes for the best possible adhesion.
- Do not to soak too long before polishing – water expands the nail plate, which then contracts as it dries which can loosen adhesion.
- Use a base coat – especially with darker colors. It protects from staining as well as providing an extra layer of flexibility that colored polish doesn’t always have.
- Apply a top coat every other day to maximize mani life. Use clear, or change the look as you extend with a special effect topper.
Enter to Win
The Nailtini ‘Feeling Grey’ collection is coming soon to the ‘Tini Beauty, but you can enter now for a chance to win. Just comment below on the design you would create using the Nailtini ‘Feeling Grey’ collection. The sweepstake closes Tuesday, February 17th, 11:59 p.m. PST. (Contest Disclaimer)