The Nail Polish Collection That Made Me Break All My Nail Rules

I am obsessively into having the best nails.
Publish date:
November 8, 2013
nail polish, new york, chameleon color, glitter nail polish, Cirque

There are a few things in life that I really appreciate. They include a good cocktail, a good dick, and a good nail polish brand. Today I am here to talk to you about one of those things, and no, we’re not talking cocktails.

I am obsessively into having the best nails. If I’m going to be the dude who wears nail polish, if I am THAT guy, then my nails have to be on point, always. You will never find me with a chipped nail, and you will never find me wearing the same polish as anyone else. It just goes against everything I believe in.

I love a small nail polish line made by serious nail lovers like myself, and I am always looking for the next one I can support and obsess over. I know there are a fleet of them on Etsy and all that, but at some point, they all sort of start blurring together. I need a line that is really, truly doing its own thing. Or at least cares enough to get its own website.

Have you guys heard about Cirque Nail Lacquer? Take a seat and let me preach.

Cirque is an artisan line of 3-free nail polish that is hand-blended in New York. Creator, Annie Pham, sought to create colors that stood out from the rest of the polishes on the market by playing around with unique pigments and raw materials. She even uses essential oils like lavender and clary sage in the polish to give it the polish a slight aroma after it dries (and during application, I noticed.)

The thing that sets Cirque apart is that it is the go-to brand if you’re looking for sick, luxurious effects. Holographic polishes, chameleon shades, and unique glitters are very hard to find, and all but unavailable in the mainstream.

When you do find polishes like these, they’re not usually done correctly (there is a certain drugstore beauty brand that recently released their own line of “holographic” polishes that, like, weren’t holographic.) But Cirque is the polish when you’re looking for the most gorgeous effects available.

As a general rule, I only wear crème polishes. I’m not into iridescence of any sort, and don’t even suggest glitter. I think that has something to do with the dregs of any weird gender rules surrounding being a dude wearing polish. Like, it’s okay to have shit on your nails as long as it doesn’t sparkle, which is 1: fucked up and 2: completely missing the point. But Cirque has made me break all of my own rules because of how irresistible it is.

The line currently consists of four collections, the newest being the Alchemy collection, plus a few limited editions. You won’t find a flat, crème polish anywhere in the line. Even the simplest colors are packed with a subtle shimmer to make the polish multi-dimensional and totally, you know, opulent.

My favorite thing is to lurk around the website using the “Shop By Type” option. You want an insane holographic? How about ten of them? Here I am wearing “Fascination Street,” a lavender holographic that sometimes reads slate.

In the mood for a color shifter? Good, me too. Check out “Epoch” that changes from blue to purple! I’m wearing “XX” on my pinky because I was desperate to try that one out as well (no, it is not an "accent nail." Please.) These glitter, you guys, I’m telling you.

AND NOW, here I am wearing “Lichen,” the raddest sexy-ugly shade of olive that turns to green in the right light. From the bottle to the nail, this polish reminds me of the Lizard from Spiderman. The way that this one reflects light is especially wild, almost comparable to Chanel's “Graphite.”

BUT WAIT. What else am I wearing? On one finger of each hand, I have “Vectors" covering “Lichen,” and on another finger, I have “Vectors” by itself.

Vectors is a glitter top coat made with flat black pieces of glitter, which is a really interesting way to finish off any manicure. It also has just a dusting of the finest holographic glitter that’s more visible (to me) when worn alone. Wearing this over bare nails (with a base coat, mind you) is one of the coolest ways to wear the glitter top coat. It's is a great addition to a line that is so lustrous, if only because its boldness comes from the fact that it’s so understated.

And the glitters. Yes lord, the glitters. Yea, they can be super hard to get off, blah blah blah. Don’t try to play me, I’ve seen you all in the comments, I know you wear glitters on the reg. Even better, I’ve seen pictures of all your manis in the xoVain comment section so I know that y’all are not afraid to mess with stubborn glitters.

If you’re serious about glitters, and let’s be real, you are, then you owe it to yourself to pick up a couple of Cirques.

Whether they’re micro-glitters that offer full, lustrous coverage, or your traditional glitter topcoats, you’re not going to find any glitters that are better than these. Quote me on that.

Cirque straight killed it with these. From super fine glitters like “Queen Majesty,”

to ones that are more middle of the road such as “Electric Circus,”

to chunky, colorful squares and hexagon like “XX” (WHICH IS EVERYTHING, BTW)

These are the glitters to end all glitters. From the variety of the size of the glitters, to the color combinations, to the finishes (matte, satin, mirrored, even some holographic pieces mixed in etc. etc.) these glitters have me DEAD.

The one I so desperately need next is called “Lullabye,” a satin finish, chunky pastel glitter for the gods.

The Cirque collection is seriously the most beautiful thing I have seen all season and my love for it is strong enough that I have broken all of my arbitrary and meaningless yet previously unwavering nail polish rules.

So have you tried Cirque? If you haven’t, don’t act like you don’t want to. Resistance is futile. What's on your nails right now? Let's talk about nails in the comments!

Tynan is glittery on Twitter @TynanBuck.