It's nearly impossible to find a look worn by Rihanna that doesn't leave the internet in cardiac arrest, but on Tuesday evening, the unexpected happened: Rihanna posted a picture of her latest manicure on Instagram, and some people really didn't love it. With two contrasting colors painted on each nail, fans dared to question Rihanna's taste on social media, and it even caused enough viral mayhem that The Shade Room re-posted the pic.
According to Rihanna's go-to nail artist, though, not only does Rihanna love it, but it was all her idea. "She just wanted something fun," Maria Salandra tells Refinery29. "It's her birthday. She wanted something not serious. Her nails are so perfect all the time, so we just decided to do something a little more fun."
When they met up yesterday in Los Angeles on the eve of Rihanna's 31st birthday, Salandra first showed the singer-actress-icon different takes on a French manicure, some with fluorescent accents. But then Rihanna suggested putting two different bright colors on each nail, and it took off from there. "She painstakingly picked out the colors she wanted," Salandra says. "She wanted something a little more pastel on the nail itself and complementary colors that would go together. And then she came up with glitter on the nails. We were just making it up as we went along."
It is her birthday, after all, so why shouldn't she do exactly what she wants for the big day? "It reminded her of Skittles, and she just loved it," Salandra says. "It looks like jelly beans meets Skittles. She was like, 'These are Instagram nails.'"
Now Salandra does admit that the manicure's colors don't photograph all that great. "On camera, the colors don't read that well," she says. "What looks to be red and green on her thumb, is not. It's a teal on the tip and like a neon orangey-red. So it picks up differently."
But needless to say, all the negative comments about the manicure aren't fazing Salandra one bit. "I think sometimes people are so set in their ways because they expect so much from her," she says. "But she's just a girl too, and she wants to have fun sometimes with her nails. The bottom line is she was ecstatic enough to get that Savage x Fenty lingerie and take that Instagram right after."
If you've got Rihanna's approval, really who else's do you need?