Is it just me, or does it feel like Mercury is always in retrograde? IDK, I’m not an astrologer, and maybe I just always trip and spill things no matter what. All I’m saying is, now that the smallest planet is moving backward, things will really feel out of whack, and we’ll all need a little pick-me-up. Enter: some relaxing mani time, courtesy of Essie. This Essie Mercury in Retrograde Nail Polish review proves that, when the world seems to be falling down around you, it’s best to keep calm and Mercury on.
Now, I’m sorry to remind you, but the current Mercury retrograde period lasts from July 26, 2018, until Aug. 19, 2018. I know, I know, that’s basically a month of hell, on top of the hell we all deal with day-to-day. But Essie’s Mercury in Retrograde Nail Polishes are here to make it a teensy bit better. No, these two little bottles might not push Mercury back direct themselves, but the holographic hues will add a pop of brightness to the dreary days ahead.
Naturally, when the glittery bottles arrived in my office, I immediately couldn’t focus on whatever was bothering me at the moment because I needed to stare at the two polishes for a really long time. I mean, just take a look at ’em yourself — they’re mesmerizing:
Considering Mercury retrograde is well underway and my life is appropriately a whirlwind right now, I had to try the polishes out myself, if not to cure my retrograde woes, then to at least make my fingers look hot AF.
Starting with clean nails (duh), I applied one coat of Essie’s “First Base” ($9, essie.com) as — wait for it — a base coat to help protect my brittle, stubby nails and to try as hard as possible to prevent chipping. Then, because I like to take what should be relaxing moments and make them into challenges, I decided to copy the nail design featured on the model above, but backwards.
Using a little foam wedge, I painted two large stripes equaling the size of my nail: a stripe of “…& Mercury On” (a glimmering royal purple) on the top and a stripe of “Keep Calm…” (a lovely, iridescent blue) on the bottom. After going over the stripes a couple times with the applicator brush, I pressed the wedge flat onto my nail, so that the purple color was closer to my cuticles and the lighter blue was closer to the tips of my nails. I repeated the same process two times on each nail to reveal a not-too-shabby ombre mani, if I do say so myself.
I used Essie’s “Good To Go” Top Coat ($9, essie.com) to seal everything in and to help the polish dry faster. But if I’m honest, these polishes began drying incredibly fast on their own. Essie: 1, Theresa: 1, Mercury retrograde: 0.
One everything had dried, I wet a Q-tip with nail polish remover to get rid of any polish residue on my actual fingers, and I was met with a stunningly shiny set of nails that are oh-so-freaking-cute. I’m serious about the shiny part. Here’s a Kira-Kira video I took post-mani that proves it:
Even with just two stamps of the wedge, I was pleasantly surprised by the color pay-off of these polishes. Though the formula for “Keep Calm…” is a bit sheer as it is, I expected to have to coat this color many more times than I actually had to. Essie: 2, Theresa: 2, Mercury retrograde: 0.
I’m now one day post-mani, and I’m still stunned at just how bright and shiny these colors appear and that each nail’s full coat is still perfectly in tact. As someone who only has to look at a nail for the polish to chip — even with a top coat on — this is a pretty big deal for me.
Now, if you’re looking to grab your own “Keep Calm…” “…& Mercury On” polishes, I have bad news and good news. (Come on, it’s Mercury retrograde!!!) The bad news is that, when these polishes were first released on Ulta’s website in mid-July, they sold out almost immediately. And when they were re-released just yesterday, they sold out again.
The good news, however, is that, according to Essie’s Instagram, the polishes should be available in Ulta stores on Sunday, Aug. 5. So before you get sucked into a web of negativity this Mercury retrograde, head to Ulta, stock up on these glittering hues, and give yourself a mani prettier than the galaxy itself. Perhaps the stars will look with favor upon you.