Girls Love Ponies. Today I Accomplished Zero. Toucan Do It If You Try. Nail-polish names have gotten…ridiculous? Amazing? Only marginally related to the lacquer inside the bottle? Let's say, "all of the above."
“Beauty is supposed to be fun, and the names are part of the brand's DNA,” says Suzi Weiss-Fischmann, OPI’s executive vice president, artistic director, and namer-in-chief. Half the fun of picking a product is turning it over to read the label on the bottom — and those range from boring (Bordeaux, a 1981 Essie creation that's still on shelves) to bizarre (So Many Clowns, So Little Time: a soft, pinkish OPI hue that strikes terror into the hearts of American Horror Story viewers).
It hasn’t always been this way. Back in the old days (a.k.a. the '80s), polishes had formulaic names, such as Pink No. 9 or Red 110. Customers suffered beauty-product amnesia, and said things like, “I’ll take a red.”
We’d never think of doing that now — and that’s the genius of ever-sassier marketing. Not only is a clever name easier to remember in the store or salon, but we’ve developed weirdly personal connections with our colors. Pull out your go-to red lipstick: Is it Dragon Girl or Cherry Bomb? The shades may be similar, but they feel different.