NARS just put out a collection of six limited edition nail polishes, a collaboration with fashion label Thakoon (the h is silent, like in “Thailand.” Say “tuh-koon” or “ta-koon.”)
Thakoon is the eponymous brand of Thai-American Thakoon Panichgul (born 1974, graduate of Boston University and the Parsons School of Design), and NARS has been doing makeup for Thakoon runway shows for years.
The official word is that this collection was inspired by an Indian spice market — though some liberties have been taken matching colors to names. All six are cremes.
Anardana is fuchsia-berry. Anardana are dried pomegranate seeds, which are used as a spice — though the color of the polish is closer to fresh pomegranate.
Ratin Jot is orchid, purple-pink. Ratin jot or ratan jot is alkanet root, the spice that gives rogan josh its color.
Amchoor is Big-Bird yellow, and a little more sheer than the others. I painted three coats of Amchoor and Kutki; just two coats of the others. Amchoor (or amchur) is powdered dried green mango (yellow beige) — the color of the polish is more like fresh mango.
Kutki is high-altitude sky blue. The polish takes its name from a medicinal ayurvedic herb.
Koliary is Mediterranean blue, and I think this name must be an error. The internet (Google) has no references to the word “Koliary,” without the word “NARS.” Even my incredibly wise Indian mother-in-law had never heard the word and couldn’t figure out what it meant. Kolia is a small city in India. Kolaveri is the urge to kill someone.
Lal Mirchi (red chili) is my favorite, the only color that really jumped out at me. It’s a very orange salsa red (the orange is especially visible in one coat). I thought this color was subtly subversive — a twist on “classic” red. Now that I have it on my nails, it reminds me of fresh red peppers, of Lippmann Supermodel (and, by extension, Essie Geranium).
I think, for my next manicure, I might try to bring out the orange more by painting one coat over yellow (or orange? Or nude?).
These polishes are $18 each. Lal Mirchi is available only at NARScosmetics.com (and at the NARS boutique in NYC). The other shades are all available at NeimanMarcus.com (free shipping with code JUNEFS), Nordstrom.com, and Sephora.com.