Ask BLUSH: The Story of BLUSH Lacquers

Written by Victoria McMillin


Posted on October 17 2021

Featured: 'S'mores Please'

Hey Beauties!

When I tell people that I make and sell my own nail polish, inevitably the first thing they ask me is, "How did you get into that?" To non-nail polish fans, they simply can't imagine a world past drug store or salon nail polish brands or how one would even fall into this mythical category of handmade artisan nail polish. And, to be honest, it's kind of a funny story.

While I would have never admitted it until recently, I've been an artist all of my life. I've had a colorful list of careers in a range of artistic fields and I enjoy creating things. I've been a writer, a make-up artist, a photographer, a photoshop editor and even a professional ballroom dancer. Which is where the story of BLUSH begins.

Back when I was in my early 20's, I decided that I was going to be a professional competitive ballroom dancer. I had been ballroom dancing at a collegiate level but really wanted to pursue it as a career. One day, when I was at a lesson with my then instructor, she was teaching me how to be more expressive with my hands. She flings her hand out to the pretend audience and says to me, "Pretend like you're showing off your manicure to the audience." So, I imitated her the best that I could. Unimpressed with my imitation, she grabs my hand and in horror says, "You don't have your nails painted!?" And I bet that you could guess, my homework for the night became painting my nails.

It's not to say that I had never painted my nails before then, but it definitely wasn't a "thing" that I did. I remember going to the local Wal-Mart the next day and looking at the nail polish aisle. So many choices! The very first nail polish I bought was a bottle of Sally Hansen's 'Big Money' from the Gem Crush line. (Here's a link to Never Without Polish's review of it with photos!) It was glittery and sparkly and if that didn't say "ballroom dancer", I didn't know what did.

So, fast forward a few years later and I am now officially nail polish obsessed. I went from it not being a "thing" to it being my "thing". I was working as a professional ballroom dancer at the time and my students always wanted to see what my nails looked like. I changed the colors all the time (often more than once a week) and everyone always commented on how nice my nails were.

My obsession to have all the newest collections and colors reached a new high. While trying to find out about new nail polish releases for mainstream polishes like OPI and Essie, I started coming across these nail polish bloggers who had all the juicy details. People like ManiGeek (BeautyGeeks), The Polishaholic and Vampy Varnish to name a few. They knew when the collections were releasing and where and what the colors would be and it was all super exciting!

Eventually, one of the bloggers I followed (I can't remember which one at the moment) started sharing nail polishes by "indie" brands. And I was HOOKED. These creations were unlike anything that the mainstream brands were putting out. The mainstream brands might put out a few glitters or maybe a shimmer or two, but these indie brands had that all the time and more! Hello holographic! Nice to meet you multi-chrome! These polishes were on another level and I needed them ASAP.

One of the first indie brands I found out about was Femme Fatale (based in Australia). Her polishes were ethereal and magical. They were sparkly, glittery, shimmery and I needed them all. I bought quite a few and still have most of them in my collection at home to this day.

A few years after that I found myself without a job and still coveting these gorgeous nail polishes. Finally, it clicked and I thought, "I have an art background, I know about color theory and how to mix colors, obviously I love nail polish, why not just create my own?" 

And, there you go beauties. How I went from knowing absolutely nothing about nail polish to becoming obsessed with it and deciding to start my own nail polish line. What has your nail polish journey looked like? Let us know below in the comments!

Disclaimer: BLUSH Lacquers is not affiliated with any products, people or brands mentioned. We’re just fans!

Read more of our 'Ask BLUSH' series:
Ask BLUSH: How To Make Nail Polish
sk BLUSH: In The Beginning There Was Mixing




  • Comment author

    Really loved this story. I too am checked every Mon from my colleagues for the color if the week😀

    Posted by Jo | October 19, 2021
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