Friday, June 4, 2010

Iris I Was Thinner

Well, this is charming on every level. By "every level" I mean the 1.4 levels of meaning I am willing to grudgingly grant OPI because they are probably feeling extremely proud of their clever non-pun and I don't want to make them cry, and by "charming" I mean "incredibly off-putting and really messed up."

Hey, guess what, OPI? Nails are the one part of everyone's body that they pretty much feel OK about. Nobody's nails are too fat!

The nail polish industry has a special place in the world of make-up because nail polish is the only product that cannot be used to make you look like the more attractive person you're not. Nobody (I hope) is using nail polish to even out their blotchy skin tone, to make their tiny eyes look bigger, to make their cheekbones more prominent. Nail polish is something a woman (or man) does to please her-(or him)-self--what color do I want my nails to be, just because I like that color?

So, you know, thanks for ignoring that whole ability you had to make nail polish the only "beauty" industry segment free from the need to make women feel bad about themselves in order to sell more products. You didn't have to make this about disguising flaws; it could have been about celebrating choices.

Instead, you're a nail polish bottle calling itself fat.


  1. GAH! This is like an OPI name I would think up while I was drinking.

    What loophole in the name approval process let this horse out of the barn? Or did they really sit around saying, "our market research shows that women who are unhappy with their weight will relish the opportunity to advertise that fact via their polish choice?"

  2. Yes, well.
    Iris OPI would run these names past a few brain cells before pasting them on pots.
    Or have the polish fumes destroyed their grey matter?

  3. Nice one. Haha beautyschoolproject and jaljen.

  4. I was going to say we still have hair products but then I remembered how many times I've heard "body" and "sleek" and other relevant wordage in those commercials, too. Well, it's all part of the marketing ploy of You Will Never Be Perfect, Shopper!

  5. I think OPI has hit a new low with this one.

  6. OPI thinks that misogyny and sexism are trendy, fun things apparently

  7. I sure do love you and your blog, Pandabear. Your blog has inspired me to include nail polish names to great effect in my YA novel coming out next summer... I'd love to acknowledge you. What should I put? Or would you rather I just mention the blog? You can reach me though, er my blog,

  8. This makes me really glad I've never bought any OPI. Makeup is about feeling GOOD for me, and this just doesn't cut it.

  9. I *had* been using nail polish to make my feet look smarter and my hands look as though they can play piano, but you've shattered my delusions.
    Sigh. Iris I could just have lavender nails.

  10. Why am I not surprised OPI has pulled size into the mix....everyone else thinks its fine and fun to make fun of size? :P Another polish I won't be buying or promoting.

  11. Jamie K.--*index finger touched to thumb making the OK sign*!

    BSP--Oh, how I wish I could go back to the days when I still had your naivety. It has been many months since I believed OPI had something even resembling a name approval process. My current theories are 1) they are intentionally picking increasingly horrible names as a scientific study to see how far they can take it before our brains explode with confusion, and 2) evil robots.

    Nihrida--Thank you!

    Jaljen--Iris OPI would just hire me to write their names for them, that would make everyone happy! I am pretty sure that whatever limited supply of gray matter they started with is long dissolved.


    Arrianne--I'm fans of BSP and Jaljen too, but shh.

    Ink--Hair is definitely not immune! I am not sure that Teenage Me would have sat for so many hours in the salon getting her hair straightened if she hadn't been called "Charles Bushy-hair" at school.

    Tamara--I'm just keepin' it real.

    SASN--Thanks! Maybe you should get your polish into some therapy to deal with its body image problem?

    Chaos--I do what I can. Feel free to borrow my soapbox!

    OtG--I agree, it is pretty. I guess it just has self-confidence issues!

    Deb--Seriously! I can't decide if I dislike the pervasive sexism of the Sephora by OPI collection or the racism-through-ignorance of OPI's Asian country collections more. Looking on the bright side, however, it does make me very fond of their typical idiotic "puns."

    Anon.--Well, we all know it's important to keep up with the latest fashions. Personally, I plan to go out this afternoon to find a job that pays me 2/3 what it pays my male counterparts and use it solely for husband-hunting. You in?

    Arlaina--Thanks for the kind words and the offer of acknowledgment. I'll drop you a line via your blog.

    Jade--I agree, I am really not into the idea that makeup is something you use because you feel bad about how you look without it (which is why I generally only wear nail polish). And for OPI to trade off general body dissatisfaction while selling a completely unrelated product is just beyond the pale!

    Nap--I feel like I am slowly crushing your soul! But no more. You keep on calling people dickweeds and I will tell everyone you can play Rachmaninoff concertos like a pro. Also, I read a story in middle school biology that involved moon colonists gene-splicing themselves with chlorophyll so they could live off sunlight, with the side effect that they all had green or red skin. So maybe lavender nails are in our future after all!

    LWfTaT--It is definitely disappointing how OPI jumped right to size. For the purposes of their name it could have been "Iris..." anything, and instead of "Iris I Had a Million Dollars" or "Iris I Were an Astronaut" we get weight-dissatisfaction? I don't know about most women, but that's not on my top ten list of wishes.

  12. Yeah, that is kind of lame. Plus, shouldn't a nail polish name be cute or fun? It doesn't have to be a Hallmark card, but it sounds so negative and sad. Nail polish should just be about fun, happy things.

    If I ever patent my own nail polish cover I'm going to call it Puppy Dog, Kitty Cats, and Unicorn Breath.

  13. Quadruple thumbs up! That is one hell of a terrible name.

  14. Definitely true! I thought this name was strange...I mean why name the nail polish this?

  15. This company wants to sell its polish in thinner bottles for the same price, thereby increasing its profit margin. Simple economics.

  16. This post - and the whole blog - is brilliant! I agree, nail polish is supposed to be fun and not "slimming," even if it is a "flattering" color for your skin tone. Plus, the grammar is incorrect! It should be "Iris I WERE Thinner."


  17. Definitely true! I thought this name was strange...I mean why name the nail polish this?

    bioidentical hormones az
    australian soap

  18. Aahhh... but you have to consider the perspective of the naming committee. Working (?) as they do in a paint factory, "thinner" isn't a reference to body size, it's a reference to solvent. And, if they keep making dumb names like this, their last color just might be "Iris I Was Solvent" ("Solvent" in the context of "not bankrupt"... ;)

  19. Sorry to reply to this one so long after the fact, but it's easily my least favorite nail polish name of all time. Annoys the piss out of me, really. That's coming from someone currently wearing Illamasqua Phallic.