Hands & Nails

An unusual holiday find: Essie Belugaria nail lacquer

December 4, 2013
Essie Belugaria nail lacquer for holiday 2013 ($8.50)
Essie Belugaria nail lacquer for holiday 2013 ($8.50)

When I think of what a holiday season nail polish looks like, this isn’t exactly what comes to mind. From the newly released Encrusted collection, Essie has introduced a nail lacquer inspired by beluga caviar called Belugaria. Inky black? Check. Chunky glitter? Yep. And texture? Yes, again! My boyfriend was actually the one to first spot the display of these at Walgreens, and pointed it out to me because it’s just such an unusual point of departure for a beauty product.

On one hand, I totally get it. Caviar is deliciously festive as well as almost absurdly luxurious. On the other hand, it’s kind of weird looking! For my boyfriend and I, it’s a special treat that we sometimes buy for just the two of us during the holidays. We just recently enjoyed some Siberian sturgeon caviar on quail eggs on Thanksgiving with some champagne.

Caviar on quail eggs, a holiday treat
Caviar on quail eggs, a holiday treat

Based on the source inspiration and the appearance in the bottle, I expected Belugaria to be a glossy black polish with some sizable bits of glitter mixed in. So I was pretty surprised when I started to apply it and found that not only did it include a whole lotta texture, but also dried to a pretty matte finish.

Essie Belugaria
Essie Belugaria
Essie Belugaria
Essie Belugaria
Essie Belugaria
Essie Belugaria, with Essie No Chips Ahead top coat

Application is interesting. I settled on a strategy of trying to lay down a very thin first layer and then a heavier second layer to make sure the coating was opaque. The formula dries really quickly, so throwing on two coats felt like a very easy process. In the future, I also think it’d be worth trying to start with a black base and then just adding one layer of Belugaria on top.

Instead of really resembling a spoonful of glistening caviar, I feel like the finish and texture looks more like asphalt. At first, that may not sound particularly festive, but it still feels like a party look to me (just a very different kind of party). This reminds me of asphalt that’s had layers of glitter stomped into it, like the street outside of a club, or Times Square on New Year’s.

I suspect that a lot of people aren’t going to be that interested in Belugaria, but I really like it. I think it’s really fun and unexpected. While I was wearing it, I switched out my more casual clothing and wore my black leather boots and sleeker clothing.

A few notes on wear: at the end of the second day of wear, I realized that I had lost all of the polish on my right pinky finger is one big chunk, so it can chip off quite heavily. I just repainted that nail, and then tried adding a top coat as well. I don’t like the look of the top coat, though. I think the more matte quality is a more purposeful look. The top coat made the polish look more like wet asphalt, and the lumpiness looked less intentional. A couple days later when I decided to remove it altogether, I realized that the top coat had made the polish really difficult to remove. I’d suggest just using Belugaria as is, with no top coat.

Belugaria costs $8.50 and is available from Essie and wherever you normally can find their polishes. For me, that’s Target and Walgreens.

How do you feel about this one? Will you be picking up any holiday nail lacquers?

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https://beautyloon.com/2013/12/04/an-unusual-holiday-find-essie-belugaria-nail-lacquer/
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