The History of Nail Polish – 1970’s

By Inspirationail

The History of Nail PolishLately we have been posting about the history of nail polish and we have made it to the mid-20th century. Now we are focusing specifically on trends from each decade and beyond for fresh ideas. Today we want to go disco with some fashion advice from the 70’s.

Ancient History

From what we have read nail polish originated in India during the Bronze Age, the trend quickly spread to Babylonia where they used kohl to colour their nails. About the same time the Chinese took things a step further crushing flower petals to create a new range of colours. Later, the fashionable Egyptian women made red nails famous.

70's Woman

Images © JaneArt

The 70’s are known for unique fabrics, bold colours a little bit of sparkle and a mix & match mentality.

Modern Days

Although people continued to stain, lacquer and manicure their nails, there were few notable advancements until the 20th century. In the early 1920’s glossy car paint was created which gave one bright lady the brilliant idea of applying it to nails. Not too long later, the world was watching movies in glorious technicolor and the cosmetic industry was changed forever.

Suzanna Leigh

Images © Allan Warren

The Glamourous 70’s

In the 50’s red was all the rage and women opted for softer, pastel shades in the 60’s. The 70’s brought about a natural movement that sent many women off with *gasp* bare nails. However, while some bared it all, others opted for deep brick reds, browns and burgundies.

From bold ethnic patterns to sequined minidresses everyone had their brand of own chic in the 70’s. Freedom of expression was key to any wardrobe.

Debbie Harry

Images © jlacpo

Becoming Modern

The conveniences of modern life had a strong influence on the fashion of this colourful decade. Better heating meant lighter, softer fabrics became popular as hemlines plunged as long as they could go. Newfound ease of transportation and travel did much to broaden horizons and provide fashion with an injection of the exotic. Polyester fabrics also made an impact, as they required much less care & could achieve a shine that was impossible with natural weaves.

1970's Fashion

Inspirationail Recommends

To get the free and seductive look of the 70’s isn’t hard – all you need is to stay natural or go strong on nails. We recommend a mix of clear coats & bold, ethnic shades like Avalon, Flirt, Bordeaux, Dewdrop, Ocean Blue to Midnight Purple or Crystal Clear. Be sure to check out nail looks from the 50’s and 60’s and stay tuned for some colour crazy 80’s.


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