Cultural Appropriation in the Nail Polish Industry:
A blog about the different nail polish colours that various companies have created for ethnic events and how it has been criticized.
Have you ever had your nails done and found a certain colour you love? You get your nails done and still can’t find that same colour when you go back to re-purchase it. Well that’s because some companies only make certain colours once a year due to an ethnic event, such as Chinese New Year or Diwali. But is this fair if they are only selling these colours once a year?
Blossom, who is an online YouTuber who posts weekly videos about nail art, has been speaking out about this cultural appropriation on her channel and many people have agreed with her from different backgrounds. Some companies have apologized for using their culture in their polishes, but others have ignored the fact that it’s not right for them to do so.
On Blossom’s channel, she compares two nail polishes from two different companies and shows us how companies copy each other since there are so many of them out there now. We can see that the packaging may be different, but the colours are almost identical. The one company being accused of cultural appropriation seems to be a
As a nail polish enthusiast, I spend a lot of time looking at pictures of nails and colour inspiration. Most recently I was inspired by the colours Girls Season 3 wore on their nails. This is not the first time that nail companies have created collections based on ethnic events. For example, OPI’s Japan Collection, China Glaze’s Khrome Collection, and China Glaze’s Metro Collection.
I recently came across an article about cultural appropriation in the nail polish industry which discussed the issue around these collections. As it has been brought to my attention that this issue is widely ignored and rarely discussed, I wanted to write this blog to bring some awareness and attention to the issue of cultural appropriation in the nail polish industry.
In recent years, nail polish companies have taken it upon themselves to make nail polishes that are culturally appropriate for certain holidays and events. Starting with the Chinese New Year, companies like O.P.I., Butter London, and Essie have released lines of nail polishes in reds, oranges, and golds for this holiday to celebrate the culture. Another event that these companies have created nail polish collections for is the Indian festival of Holi. In 2015 O.P.I. created a line of bright and colourful nail polishes to celebrate this holiday. As well, more recently Essie has come out with a nail polish collection called “Fiji” which includes various colours such as “Ballet Slippers”, “Rosy Outlook”, “Coconut Cove”, and “Skinny Dip”. However, what all of these nail polish collections have in common is that they are marketed towards white people who are not part of that culture.
When I first heard about these nail polish lines, I thought it was a nice way to acknowledge the different cultures around us and the events they celebrate; however, when I thought about it more I realized that these companies are taking on an issue that is not theirs to take on. They are profiting off of other cultures
Nail polish colours is one of the most popular ways in which women decorate their bodies. It is a simple way of expressing a unique identity, and also showcasing one’s personality. Nail polish is seen as a form of female expressionism.
In recent years, nail polish has become very popular and it is used by both men and women. The demand for this product has risen to unprecedented levels among the younger generation, and this has resulted in the creation of various nail polish companies.
Many of these nail polish companies have come under fire for cultural appropriation, since many of their products are named after or designed after events or practices that are particular to ethnic minorities or marginalized groups.
Some examples include:
– Essie’s “Bikini So Teeny” inspired by the Japanese festival “Hanabi Taikai” (which means “fireworks display”)
– Essie’s “Navigate Her” inspired by traditional Moroccan wedding dresses
– OPI’s “Dragon Me Down” inspired by Chinese New Year dragon dances (which is similar to a previous design called “Year Of The Dragon”)
– OPI’s “Princess
Nail polish has always been a popular beauty product for many women. It offers the opportunity to add some variety and some colour to one’s appearance; for some people, it is an art form. However, nail polish also has a very political past and present, which includes the appropriation of cultural elements in a way that is not always respectful.
Many companies have released collections of nail polish colours that are based off of traditional ethnic clothing colours, such as the Native American Navajo clothing or the Chinese qipao dress. In most cases, they were released during particular holidays or festivals associated with these cultures. OPI’s Neverending Story collection, for example, was released at the time of Chinese New Year, while NARS created a collection inspired by Brazilian carnival celebrations.
The problem with these collections is that they are often not created by individuals from the culture in question or the clothing worn by people in those cultures. As such, these nail polish colours can be seen as appropriating elements from other cultures without fully understanding their meaning or context and reducing them to their aesthetic value alone.
Similarly, many holiday collections around wintertime also appropriate Native American culture through their names and pictures on bottles. For example, Native Americans do not use Santa Claus in
The vast majority of people, who still do not understand the dynamics of cultural appropriation, seem to be oblivious to how their actions can affect others. When I was a child I did not know any better but now that I am older and have been made aware of the negative effects that can occur from my actions, I feel as though it is my duty to inform others about this damaging practice.
I will be discussing the negative impact of cultural appropriation in relation to nail polish colours. I will also discuss how black women in particular are affected by this issue.
As a black woman, it is very important for me to understand my culture and heritage. By understanding these things, I am able to stand up for myself and not allow anyone to appropriate my culture or heritage.