Entering the dark ages

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Entering the dark ages

Q) I like the idea of dark, even black, nails, but dont want to look like an emo (I’m in my late twenties, so teen angst doesn’t work for me). What polishes should I try? – Natural-nailed member, Luka

A) I hear you. I used to be a nail polish purist too – palest pink on my fingers, with only the classic shades of pink or red on my toes. But life as a beauty editor compels a girl to experiment and, eventually, I even let inky black into my manicure kit. Here’s how to ease yourself into the dark ages:

When donning dark polish, remember short is chic – otherwise you risk frightening small children with your scary Elvira Mistress of the Dark-type talons. Also, all dark nail colours show up chips so you could see them from space, so look for a quality varnish (choose a brand that you’ve used before) and lock it down with a top coat. I like Cutex Quick Dry Top Coat ($6.95).

Try working your way down to black with the other dramatic hues that are big this season. Rich brown is easy to wear and looks stylish. Creative Nail Design’s dark chocolate Fedora enamel ($16.95) is velvety and gorgeous. Sumptuous blackberry and wine varnishes are also hip. OPI Lincoln Park After Dark ($19.95) is simply one of the sexiest deep purple shades ever. It’s sell-out popular too, so if you see it, snap up two.

Then, when you’re ready for black, you can choose from a pure glossy black or something with a little twist. Try Creative Nail Designs Voodoo ($16.95) for a shiny, straight up black or Creative Nail Designs #386 NFS ($16.95) for black with a blue hue. Kit’s new Nail Polish in Power Up ($15.95) is a patent black with a steely metallic shimmer. It just landed on my desk the other day and is already my new favourite. It’s easy to come to the dark side, Luka. Come to the dark side…

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