The History of Nail Polish – 1990’s
Last year we began taking a look at the history of colourful nails and with the start of the new year we thought it was time to finish trends of the 20th century and look to towards the future. Today it’s all about the (non) fashion of the 90’s – the lost generation.
The story of nail polish is very old and we think it began in India during the Bronze Age when nails were stained with henna. The trend spread to Babylonia where they used kohl to colour their nails and around the same time the Chinese took things a step further crushing flower petals to create more colours. Later, the fashionable Egyptian women made red nails famous.
The 90’s was a time of musical experimentation, fashion amalgamation and the party kid generation.
Although people continued to stain, lacquer and manicure their nails over the years, there weren’t many notable advancements until the early 20th century when glossy car paint was created. This invention gave one clever lady the fab idea of applying the concept to nails. Around the same time the world began watching movies in glorious technicolor which changed the cosmetic industry forever.
The Gyrating 90’s
Each decade has its own fairly distinct nail fashions from the functionality of the 10’s to the wartime glam of the 40’s to the glittering vibe of the 70’s. The 90’s somehow managed to combine the entire 20th century of fashion into one decade as the world began to work its way online.
Another youth culture inspired decade, 90’s fashion fed on everything from dark grunge to happy trance.
The Almighty Computer
A decade of extremes, the 90’s introduced us to computers in every aspect of life, including music and fashion. While grungy rockers tried to hold onto the days of amps and drums, a new brand of electronic music took a much more colourful and daring spotlight in the fashion world. While in a way the tackiness of the 80’s was left behind, a new kind of over-the-top fashion emerged, one seasoned with growing use of the Internet.
To get the lively look of the 90’s isn’t hard – a bottle of Chanel’s Vamp will probably do the trick. It was definitely the signature colour of the 1990’s – but that doesn’t mean it’s the only colour that can give you the look. Try Bridal Veil, Knock Out, Acid Yellow, CEO Blood, Hot Orange, Ocean Blue to Midnight Purple or Chic Black.