Sparkle, Shirley, Sparkle!

by Molly Simms

A few years ago, I kicked a nearly lifelong nail-biting habit, and am currently enjoying the spoils: normal-person, non-gnawed-on hands. To celebrate my talons—and hopefully stop myself from backsliding—I’ve been keeping my nails painted as much as I can. Luckily, I’m in good company—all my buddies and the other GLOB (Gorgeous Ladies of BUST) are nail-polish addicts. I especially like glittery stuff, because, as far as I’m concerned, metallic sparkles are a neutral. (I also think that leopard print is a neutral, but, in the words of Jeannie Darcy, don’t get me started.)

We’re apparently supposed to look like human disco balls during the holiday season, but I think glitter polish is great year-round. Lots of schwanky cosmetic companies make expensive versions of this polish ($35 for a bottle, Chanel? Really? I have BILLZ to pay), but you don’t have to hock your CD’s to afford some nice glitter options.

Sephora and OPI teamed up on a $28 four-pack of glitter polishes this year, which look promising. OPI, whose polishes usually cost about $10, also has a new series of Muppets-inspired polishes (I know, bear with me) that have some quality glitter choices, like “Rainbow Connection.”

I’m also fond of their “Bring on the Bling” color.

Just the other day, we also professed our love for KleanColor, which has cheap, wonderful glitter-and-foil-shape polishes for the grandstanding weirdo inside all of us.

[Note: lots of these polishes are meant to be used primarily as top coats, so you’ll probably have the best luck layering them over a coat of black. Otherwise, they’re mostly sheer, but still plenty sparkly.]

But I reserve my highest praise for my girl SaHa (Sally Hansen), whose Salon Effects Real Nail Polish Strips have changed the way I think about nail polish forever. I am both impatient and a perfectionist, so painting my nails the old-fashioned way is sometimes an obnoxious chore. I find it nearly impossible to wait for my nails to dry, which is why they often end up smudged, with Trader Joe’s Jalapeno Cheese Crunchies dust on them. Then I look at the smudges and utter a low, guttural moan. However, Sally’s strips go on super easy and quick (but do NOT skip the hand-washing or the swipe-with-polish-remover steps), and they last for weeks. Weeks, I tell you. Throw on some protective top coat every few days, and they’ll last even longer. Best of all, they dry immediately and are impervious to chips, peeling, and the aggressive home-improvement projects I like to undertake.

SaHa’s glitter strips are the best of her line, in my opinionation. I’m currently wearing the strips in “Glitz Blitz,” and the glitter is so opaque and glamorous-looking that strangers have commented on how long they must have taken. HA.

Fool the world into thinking you’re fancy by using Sally Hansen strips, or experiment with any of the glitter polishes above. Then freak out passersby with your bonkers, ultra-sparkly hands.

Image credits:,,,,


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Founded in 1993, BUST is the inclusive feminist lifestyle trailblazer offering a unique mix of humor, female-focused entertainment, uncensored personal stories, and candid reporting that tells the truth about women’s lives.

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