So I got my nails done last week.
For the past five years or so I get a manicure every two to three weeks. It started with just clear polish, giving my nails a nice clean look. Eventually I moved up to getting clear Shellac (a UV cured gel type polish) which has the advantage of lasting about two weeks with no chipping. I then progressed to a clear sparkly finish which is a bit more fun but still doesn’t attract too much undue attention. Then, about a two years ago, I started getting a sheer pink color under the sparkly finish. It added a hint of color which was noticeable if you really looked at my nails but still relatively neutral. I wore that for about a year before choosing a less sheer pink base. So for about the last year now, my nails are noticeably sparkly pink. Not screaming across the room pink, but enough that they can no longer go unnoticed while sitting a table with other people.
For those interested, the colors worn are Blush Teddy topped with Silver VIP Status. 🙂
Perhaps it’s a bit silly, but they make me smile – they make me feel good.
I have been living with my pink nails long enough now that if I go too long, and the Shellac comes off, my nails look ‘wrong’ to me. I look at them and feel somehow incomplete, as if a part of me is missing. They have become a part what defines ‘me’ to some extent.
When I go to the salon to get them done, it feels good. I smile as I watch them once again transformed: shiny, sparkly… I almost always get some compliment on them, which only feeds the feeling and provides just a bit of validation that we all so desperately need now and then. I walk out of the salon and the natural light reflects off of them, intensifying the color and shimmer and I feel myself smile again.
Perhaps this sounds a bit overblown. After all, it’s just nail polish, right?
To the vast majority of the nail polish wearing population, polishing one’s nails is akin to putting on socks. Most women grow up polishing the nails as a matter of course. But for someone not raised that way…
Like my earrings (which I change daily and I am never without) and my handbag (upon which I am totally dependent,) my nails are a little thing in the grand scheme of of life. But as I have learned to live with being trans, it’s little things which often make all the difference in how I feel for the day. They mean far more to me than anyone else likely realizes.
I look down as my fingers tippity-tap across the keys of my laptop as I type this – catch glimpses of pink and sparkles…
And yes, I’m smiling… 🙂