Some of you may remember my wedding post from a couple of months back – I mentioned a nail polish shown in a runway photo from Oscar de la Renta’s Spring 2013 Bridal Collection that sparked my interest in having blue nails at my wedding. For reference, here’s the photo I was talking about:
At the time, I didn’t realize that this was a real color – I figured it was some frankened combo made by some genius nail tech especially for this runway shoot. A few months after my wedding a friend from the nail community alerted me to Larimar, a color being sold on Oscar de la Renta’s website for $22. My eyes popped out of my head – there it was… the color I was looking for… that truly beautiful ethereal, seemingly surreal blue from the runway show!! I died a little and after my resurrection I forked over the 22 bucks to snag myself a bottle.
Oscar de la Renta Larimar is the truest light blue creme I have ever seen. My photo is a little inaccurate, it’s a smidge lighter in real life. All the light blues in my collection, for example China Glaze Moody Blue and Rescue Beauty Lounge Bikini Bottom, seem to lean green in comparison. I really love the color but the polish was a bit of a disappointment. First, while the runway photos were color accurate, that seemingly translucent, backlit quality exhibited in the photos (that, frankly, made this polish look so special) did not translate to my mani. I don’t know whether that should be attributed to the number of coats I used - I failed to write it down in my notes but I believe it was around 4. Second, this is a PITA to apply. Somewhat thick but thin at the same time – I ended up using the slather and sculpt method (slathering it on willy-nilly, then very carefully cleaning up afterwards). The bottle and brush shape did not help the PITA-ness at all. The bottle is longer than an average nail polish bottle, as a result the brush was very long. If you do your nails often and you’re used to a standard bottle size, you’re probably also used to judging the amount of polish you need in relation to how the polish flows down the brush shaft. For me, judging the polish stream on the brush is an unconscious, automatic action – with this longer brush, more polish than normal flows or drips downward on the brush causing unexpected pooling. That took some getting used to, for sure.
This polish presented an interesting conundrum for me. As a polish blogger, I’m often explaining to people that photos won’t always be accurate. There’s so much that goes into how a color in a photo looks – just to name a few factors, the lighting, the skintone of the model, the camera, and the computer monitor being used to see the photo will all effect how the polish color appears. When I first started blogging again, I went to a photography store to buy a new lighting system because I had long ago chucked my old DIY light box. I tried to explain to the owner of the store what this site is about - he was a career products photographer so he was definitely the right person to talk to about nail polish photo color accuracy. He pretty much told me flat-out, ”you will never get the color in the photo to look exactly how you see it in real life.” I really do make a conscious effort to ensure that my photos are as accurate as possible. I don’t use editing software for color correcting, because, well, I’m bad at it – I only make it worse. So, when accuracy is not possible, I try to make sure that I tell you about it. I know a lot of people get really frustrated when they see a photo of a color on a site, order it thinking that they are getting the color that they saw, only to find the color in real life looks nothing like it looks on the site. I can honestly say that I’ve never felt that way until I got this color. Since I started collecting, I’ve always looked at swatches online before making a purchase. In doing so, I’ve always expected there to be some level of inaccuracy associated with the photos. I was never disappointed when a color ended up being different then a swatch I’d seen… until this color. I guess it’s because there aren’t many colors I come across that seem really unique. This color, in the runway photos, seemed really special – I was expecting a crelly with an inner luminescence, only to get a standard crème. Now been that I’ve in the shoes of a frustrated swatch viewer, I totally understand why peeps complain about that.
With all that said – is this color worth it? Hefty price tag, color inaccuracies, application issues and all? The surprising answer is yes. It’s not what I expected and that was disappointing but I couldn’t find anything in my stash quite like it. And it’s seriously pretty. Totally would have worn this to my wedding if I had owned it at the time (even over my Mother’s objections).
What are your thoughts on color inaccuracies? Is it a pet-peeve or do you leave room for error?