Glossier pink

I've Got The Blues

Elizabeth Brockway Blue Nail Polish
Elizabeth Brockway Blue Nail Polish
Elizabeth Brockway Blue Nail Polish
Elizabeth Brockway Blue Nail Polish
Elizabeth Brockway Blue Nail Polish
Elizabeth Brockway Blue Nail Polish

Sometimes you’re just feeling blue and there’s nothing you—or anyone else, for that matter—can say or do to make you feel any different. No, I’m not talking about being depressed or feeling down, but rather the world-famous primary color. I love blue. If it were possible, everything I own would be blue (most everything is, actually, besides the white, black, and grey theme I have going on in my closet). My bedroom at home is periwinkle. If renter laws didn't forbid me, my bedroom in New York would be painted a beautiful sky blue (instead, it's a bland, albeit inoffensive, shade of cream). My senior prom dress was blue (cobalt). Blue is just the best, any way you spin it. Why is the sky blue? Because it’s effing beautiful. Why is the ocean blue? Because I like it that way.

However, my favorite color provides a bit of a challenge when it comes to makeup. While I love the '80s and very much wish I could have been part of the LA or NYC party scene during that decade, I feel like blue eyeshadow is difficult to pull off. There is the option of blue mascara (Dior makes a great one, which earned me one a very good friend freshman year of college), but that’s not so much an everyday look as it is a special-occasion addition. I admit I've tried the Obsessive Compulsive Lip Tar in the cyan RX, but I ended up looking like I had an intimate moment with a Smurf, or a member of Blue Man Group. But there is one cosmetic option that allows me to let my love of blue shine, and it just so happens to be my favorite type of makeup: nail polish!

First, a story: I remember being in a Limited Too at the mall with my mom when I was about seven years old. I was a big fan of Limited Too—I always wore an entire Limited Too outfit to the store whenever visiting in the hopes that a salesperson would ask me to be a campaign model (it never happened)—and their tacky, dubiously made clothes (I recall an electric-blue pleather jacket I received as a birthday gift, which my mom was not too pleased about). I was standing in the makeup section and picked out a pearlescent blueish-green nail polish and immediately heard the words, “That is the ugliest color ever,” coming from my mother’s mouth. She may have been correct. But she bought it for me anyway, and I rocked that heinous hue up and down the lower school hallways.

But now, in my twenty-third year of life, I would prefer to avoid the ugly on my nails. Of course there are moments when tacky is mandatory, and I embrace those in full force, but there are ways to do blue without the “ Eww.” A few seasons ago, I became infatuated with Chanel’s Coco Blue (middle, right finger) and YSL’s Bleu Majorelle (middle, left finger) and wore them non-stop. But then came the navys, the robin’s-eggs, turquoises, the sky blues, the baby blues, the electric blues, the shinys vs. mattes, the sparkles vs. no sparkles, it’s never ending! Essie Weingarten (yes, that Essie) once told us that she “can never do enough blues… Why? It makes us happy: it’s the sea and the sky…” I, and apparently hundreds of thousands of others, agree. Blue is in.

But why just choose one shade? Perhaps ten different colors is a bit much—it could be scaled down to a more manageable five (or maybe two… or one). Continuing with the ombré theme I've grown to love, I've outfitted my digits with all of my favorite hues. Oh, blue, you just get me.

—Elizabeth Brockway

Right hand (from pinky to thumb): MAC Blue Gaze, OPI Eurso Euro, Sally Hansen Blue My Mind, YSL Bleu Majorelle, Essie Butler Please. Left hand (from thumb to pinky): Essie Avenue Maintain, MAC Bleu Velvet, Chanel Coco Blue, Estee Lauder Dilettante, MAC Pistachio Crème.

Photos by Emily Weiss.