Showing posts with label terminology. Show all posts
Showing posts with label terminology. Show all posts

Polish terminology - How much is that lemming in the window?

Tuesday, July 23, 2013



The nail polish world has its own lingo. It is ever evolving and is sometimes hard to keep up with. If you have heard terms and though “What the heck is that?” then you are not alone. Words like “lemming, glitter sammy, or franken may have you feeling like you have traveled to an alien land.

Let’s try to go through some of those terms. This list isn’t all-inclusive as I am sure I have left many out.

Lemming – No, it isn’t one of those cute little furry creatures throwing themselves off a cliff. Lemming can be a noun or a verb. It generally stands for something that you simply must have. For instance; OPI DS Original is a lemming of mine. Or; I am really lemming OPI DS Original.

Htf – Hard to Find – This refers to a polish that has been discontinued or perhaps was a limited edition. Therefore it is Htf. It can sometimes apply to a polish that is new, but is in such demand that it is impossible to locate.

Vhtf – Very Hard to Find – This is same as above but some people add the word “very” to the phrase.

Linear Holo
Holo – A type of polish that emits the colors of the rainbow in the light and may appear to be three-dimensional. There are two types of holographic polishes.

    Scattered holo
  •  Linear – This type actually emits a prism effect. You can actually see the rainbow on yournail. The particles work together and you can see the colors shift in steps. Color Club Halo Hues are linear holos.
  • Scattered – This type creates bursts of holographic effects but there is no rhyme or reason to where they appear. Orly Sparkling Garbage is a scattered holo.

Vnl – Visible Nail Line. This is the line you see on your nail when you use a sheer polish. You can actually see the tip of the nail through the polish and it creates a Visible Nail Line.

Cuticle drag – this is what happens if you apply a polish and swipes of the brush actually remove polish as you are applying. You can avoid this if you wait for the polish to dry before applying the second coat. Some polishes tend to do this more than others.

Matte – A matte finish is dull and without shine. You can use matte polishes or you can create a matte finish with several topcoats.

Opaque – or opacity – the state of a polish when it is not transparent nor not able to be seen through.

Duochrome - A finish that changes between two, or sometimes more, colors in the light. The best example I know of this is Hits Cutie Pie.

Franken – mixing two or more polishes together, or adding glitter or texture to create your own color. I often call this Mixology. This is not to be confused with creating an indie polish.

Indie - this term's definition varies from person to person. But I consider it to be an independent owner who mixes and creates polish without using pre-made polish. Consider it to be like baking a caking with "from scratch" ingredients versus baking a cake from a box.

Dupe – Short for duplicate. If a polish is a dupe for another it means they appear the same.

Dusty Hunting – The act of browsing nail salons, and other type stores to hunt for Htf or Vhtf polishes.

Stash – that collection of polish that we are oh so proud of.

Purge – what happens when you realize you have too many polishes and you decide to thin out your stash. 

Haul – The result of dusting hunting or shopping at any location with nail polish. We often come home with some pretty polishes, and maybe some lemmings to add to our stash.

NOTD – Nail of The Day – What’s on your nails today?

RAOK – Random Act of Kindness. The polish community is chock full of wonderful people. Occasionally they bestow a Random Act of Kindness on you and send you a pretty polish or a lemming.

Core – A polish that will be part of the brand’s constant stock. It is not limited edition so you should be able to find it at any time.

Skittles – The act of wearing a different color polish on each nail.

Jelly - a sheer polish with a translucent finish and a jelly-like consistency that you can build up to the level of opaqueness that you choose.  

Jelly Sandwich - or jelly sammy - using glitter polish between layers of jelly polish to create a muted sparkle with lots of depth.

Although I am sure there are many more terms; this should cover the majority. Feel free to add terms to the comments.
 

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