To French? or Not to French?

sheryl-porterNo, no, To Frenchie

By Sheryl Porter

To French or not to French (manicure)… that is the question. It is still one of the most sought after nail designs requested at salons today.  But, in the days of ‘less is more’… is a French Manicure still relevant?  I had to ask myself the same question because until this week, I really did not have an opinion regarding the ‘frenchie’.  I remember in high school, me and my gal pals would go to the beauty school and have students give us the continental manicure.  Boy, did we feel big at the time. That was back in the 80’s!

But, the French manicure dates back to the 20’s and 30’s when magazines needed a neutral, ‘go-with-anything’ nail look for their models.  Nail polish company, Orly, officially dubbed the term “French Manicure” in 1978 with the launch of their at-home French Manicure kit.

I got a Frenchie last weekend, wore it for the week, polled my friends and here are the results.  The majority like the idea of the French manicure, but admit they don’t wear it because it’s nearly impossible to create on your own. Others responded adamantly that the frenchie is ‘trashy’ and one said the bold white tips always remind her of nails tapping on a table.  Great, thanks for that… now, that’s what I associate with it too! 


I had one friend say she did not like the ‘french’ but opted for the ‘american’ version of the white tip classic.  Here’s the dif:  The French is white tips with a clear nail bed.  The American is the white tip with a sheer pink coat of polish on top, reducing the contrast and giving it a more natural look.  After learning this…. yeah, I can’t help but agree. I prefer the American as well… how patriotic!


16341PCN_montagThe clincher is when one of the gal-pals polled said french manicures remind her of Heidi Montag… since she was recently seen with long, white, trashy tips.  Gag!

OK, French is for sure O-U-T!  Just for back up, I went through the pages of the most recent issue of People magazine and scoured the pages.  I think I found ONE French manicure among the entire magazine.  Most celebrities opted for sheer shades of pink when choosing a more natural nail look.  And, if your nails are in good health, your nail tips will be naturally white and give a slight contrast to the fresh, pink nail bed.  My best bet for a sheer pink is OPI’s Bubble Bath.  Stay Away from the French manicure.  Go with natural pink shades… or try the American manicure!!!

This will be my last beauty article for the Fayetteville Free Weekly.  I will be writing for Southern Beauty Magazine and will also have a weekly blog called “Confessions of a High Maintenance Chick” at  I hope you have enjoyed my little stories as I have enjoyed writing them for you.  Thanks to Susan Porter (no relation) and everyone at The Fayetteville Free Weekly for their support.  Stay Pretty!



Categories: Features