Chipped Nails: A Faux Pas No More?

Published in: Just For Fun, Nails


According to a story in The New York Times, a new trend in nails has lazy women everywhere jumping for joy! Get this: chipped nail polish.


On the fingers of some fashion-forward women, streaked, chipped and basically tow-up nails are replacing well-manicured nails.

“Over the last few years — since the era of the skull print scarf, let’s say, or the (metaphorical) rise of the Olsen twins — having streaked, chipped or just plain grotty nail polish no longer suggests drug addiction, manual labor or pure laziness. Like untied high-tops, thread-worn jeans and bedhead, it’s now part of a deliberate look.

And chipped polish is not sported solely by nail-biting school students and downtown punkers. It has been spotted uptown, in professional settings and gala parties, behind department store sales counters and even (gasp!) on beauty and fashion industry insiders.

Anyone can get caught between manicures. But now women no longer have to sit on their hands when they do.” (free registration required)

This works out great for me. Lazy women rejoice! Is it a sign of the times? Are we too busy to take care of our nails? Homemakers, businesswomen, fashionistas, students, beauty bloggers — we all lead busy lives. Where does painting your nails rank on your list of things to do?

I’m all for new trends and the evolution of style, but I think chipped nails look messy. Hell yeah, I’m certainly guilty of sporting chipped nails from time to time (BlackBerry/CrackBerry typing wreaks havoc on nail polish, girl!), but rarely on purpose.

Are you rocking chipped nails today? Mine are still four different colors from doing the MAC Neo Sci Fi nail swatches yesterday… I know, I’m terrible!

Yea! Thursday! I totally woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning. Hopefully another latte helps me kick the grouchiness. Come hither, you glorious, fluffy coffee cloud of caffeinated goodness!

How’s your day been?

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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So far, 23 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Jeanne says:

    Happy Thursday!

    I admit that I’ve got chipped nails going on right now — however, they’re mostly whole with only a few chips, and that’s just because I got them done a week ago. But when they turn to mostly-chip, that’s when it’s time to bust out the remover. I wouldn’t chip my nails on purpose, though — I earn my chips!

    I usually do polish just on my toes, and not my fingers, because while I can sit around barefoot for hours, I can’t sit and keep my hands idle for too long! I usually don’t go get my nails done, either (I usually do it myself), but I just got a “repeat customer” card at the place that did mine last week…

    Jeannes last blog post..Are you ready to Dance?

  2. Eru says:

    Hey karen!
    How are you doing girl? Im ill but alive, you know~~ hope you’re doing better than moi!:D
    I think I could rock the chipped nails, but I’m not totally convinced of it. Uhm, maybe only a bit… I usually try to wear my nail polish in a good condition, even more if I’m wearing dark colors so deliberate chipped nails is a new world for me!
    We can say I have mixed feelings, my punk side is saying Yay! and my classy side is horrified. LoL.

  3. Beth says:

    I can safely say, I won’t be doing the chipped nails thing. I have gels and if one of those chips I have to have been doing some pretty serious manual labour or had some sort of spatial awareness-related accident, which is my usual cause.

    I hope your day is getting better, I’m sure the latte-goodness helped. Mine has been a little up and little down. I got eyeshadow goodies delivered but also found out that the funeral of an old school friend who I’d known since I was three is next Wednesday so I’m a little shaken about it all.

    Beths last blog post..A Picnic in the Park

  4. Glosslizard says:

    I’m not that picky about nail polish, but when mine starts to chip I just take it off! I like to let my nails air out for a few days between polishing anyway, I think it keeps them from getting too dry!

  5. Karen says:

    Hi Jeanne,

    Happy Thursday to you too. Are you feeling better today? Hope so!

    I earn my chips, too. Mine take a beating from typing so the max I’ll go is one week, two weeks tops. I do my own nails though (my mom got a nasty infection from a salon a few years ago and now I’m paranoid) to save $.

    What polish do you have on your toes right now?

  6. Karen says:

    Hi Eru,

    What’s up girl? I miss you! I figured you were really busy.

    Dark colors are so hard to wear, IMHO. I love them because they look so rich, but man, they are a pain.

    Hang in there and talk to ya soon!

  7. Karen says:

    Hi Beth,

    The latte is starting to kick in so I’m feeling less agro, LOL.

    I’ve had the same experience — a few years ago I looked in the paper and saw my friend’s senior picture (which I still have) in the obit section. It really frightened me. Are you okay?

  8. Karen says:

    Hi Glosslizard,

    I give mine a few days, too, just to let them breathe, and so they don’t get stained yellow. I actually just chopped mine down a few days ago. It was getting too hard to type with those claws!

  9. Indian Girl says:

    I dont like chipped nails and dont think it will grow into a big trend…neatly painted nails are the way to go, any day. I just got the Nic stick from Ulta and have painted my toes and finger nails….I love the complete look! I fthey chip a lot, I usually just remove it off and my nails breathe for a week or two…
    I am not big on mani and pedi but I love my nail polishes!

  10. Karen says:

    Hi Indian Girl,

    I go through waves when it comes to polish… sometimes I’ll be into it, sometimes I’ll be too lazy. Do you have a favorite color? 🙂

  11. Nikki says:

    NO?? seriously?? REALLY?? I can’t pull it off! I hate it when my nail polish chips and I wouldn’t think twice getting a nail polish remover!!! aaacckk 🙂

    Nikkis last blog post..I’m Loyal to: Ipamena and Skechers!

  12. Miss QQ says:

    Hi Karen

    I’m having chipped nails now. I was using the blue tack this morning and it stuck some of my polish out. Probably will remove all tonight and let them rest before putting on a new colour this Sunday. Although I’m rostered for work this Saturday (sigh*), the weekend is coming!

    Thanks for reminding me about infections from nail salons. I forgot about the risk. Will check out each salon before going in the future.

  13. Marisol says:

    Chippin’ is not for me. I like my nails to look nice and am constantly reapplying nail polish. I find it to calming to do my nails.

    I guess this most have been a hot story as it was in my Google Reader in 5 different blogs. LOL

    Marisols last blog post..Yes I am a Lush.

  14. Gauss says:

    I find this is a weird and ugly trend. It doesn’t take that long to remove the nail polish once it’s getting too chipped. Hands just look so ugly with chipped nail polish…

  15. Megan says:

    Ugh… I think this is WAY too contrived….like trying too hard to seem like you don’t care.

    I rarely wear colors on my nails because I can’t stand chips on my fingers…

  16. Karen says:

    Hi Nikki,

    Yup, I couldn’t believe it either. Pass me the nail polish remover!

  17. Karen says:

    Hi Miss QQ,

    You’re welcome! I’ve heard that one thing that helps is bringing your own set of tools. If you’ve got your own, bring ’em!

    Even though you have to work on Saturday, at least it’s money in the bank, right? What do you do?

  18. Karen says:

    Hi Marisol,

    Me too! I like doing my nails when I’m watching TV. When I used to commute to SF I’d always bring out the crystal nail file and file my nails when I was bus… ahh, good times.

    What are you plans for the weekend?

  19. Karen says:

    Hi Gauss!

    Yeah, it’s not gonna be for everyone. I’m going to try to avoid it!

  20. Karen says:

    Hi Megan,

    I hear ya! The only time I sport chips is when it actually happens on accident, LOL. Then I just take it all off…

  21. Well Karen,

    I won’t be fashionable…since there is NO way I will go around sporting untidy nails! I say NO to chipped nails!

    Miss Gisel B.

    Miss Gisele B.s last blog post..Heidi Klum’s new skincare line on infomercial

  22. Miss QQ says:

    Hi Karen

    Yeah, money for more makeup and skincare products! I work once every four Saturdays. I’m in the healthcare industry, doing admin. I like my job – always wanted to serve in healthcare.

    Unfortunately, I don’t have my own tools. Perhaps I will get a set, hmm…

  23. Baby Girl says:

    Hi Karen,

    This is one trend I’m not touching. I cannot stand a chip and when it starts to happen I redo my nails or go clear coat until I have time to do them again.

    Baby Girls last blog post..Know Your History

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