Essie’s Rita Remark Talks Nail Polish Trends

June 10, 2021

Manicure guru Rita Remark is a go-to source for the latest in all things nails. As the global lead educator for essie, she’s an expert in colours trends, polish styles and new innovations in the nail world. We spoke with Rita to learn about the latest launches from essie, along with tips to get our nails summer ready! —Lyndi Barrett

Summer is around the corner. What nail polish colours are you excited to wear this season?

This season I’m looking to vibrant, cheerful, undiluted colour! Bold cream shades in blue, green, magenta, yellow and more. I’m currently obsessed with essie’s summer collection. I love pucker up, juicy details and tangerine tease.

Many of us have been doing at-home manicures. Any tips to ensure a smooth polish application?

It’s important not to skip steps! Most especially base coat. I know we all get the most payoff with colour, but base coat makes colour apply like butter! If you have ridged nails, use a ridge filing base coat like smooth-e. Fun tip: this base coat is also great for difficult to apply pastel shades that tend to streak. Ridge filling base coats even the nail surface and provide a self-leveling effect for a flawless application

What is the best way to help your manicure last longer?

For a longwearing mani, never forget these steps:

  1. ALWAYS cleanse the nail with acetone or alcohol before you polish. This wipes away oils or residues that interfere with polish adhesion.
  2. Run the brush along the tips of the nails after each coat. This seals-in the polish as it dries, preventing chips.
  3. Use a longwear topcoat (like no chips ahead) and add another coat of topcoat every few days to re-stabilize the polish and restore the shine.

Nail art has become such a big trend! What are your favourite styles of the season?

I’m a big fan of the maximalist trend. It’s like a next-level mismatch mani. This smiley faces, ying-yangs, cloud and flower decals, checkerboard and more! Sky’s the limit. It’s not meant to be serious—that’s the best part! I also love abstract, retro curves and swirls atop of negative space nails. It’s a super-customizable look and easy to wear with anything. Finally, I’m a big fan of the matchy-matchy, nail-to-outfit coordination that I’ve been seeing on the red carpets. This isn’t just about matching colours, it’s about polishing the same patterns on your nails that you have in your dress, shirt or even your mask.

Essie has so many colours in its range; is there any one you feel is missing?!

This happens to me so rarely. If I ever find a gap in our range, I can bet within a few months, essie will have it bottled in a new collection. If I were selecting and mixing essie shades there may be a few more greens to be found … but it’s also my favourite colour, so I’m biased.

You’ve created the nail designs for some really cool runway shows at New York Fashion Week. Which collection and nail art stands out for you?

I always love a runway show that commits, full-on, to theme. One of the most memorable examples is when I lead the nail team for Monse’s SS18 show. The entire experience took place in on a basketball court, with the collection drawing inspiration for high-school sports teams. The nails even followed suit with negative space racing stripes down the nails and an “M” for Monse polished on each thumb in the style of a letterman jacket. Best part? Even the toes sported racing stripes. Another example of a fully immersive fashion week experience would be Rixo’s FW20 presentation. That season, they collaborated with Christian Lacroix and the designs, down to the nails, bore their classic polka dot motif.

Being the global lead educator for essie sounds like such a cool job! Tell us about your favourite part about your work.

The best part about my job is that every day is something new! Some days I’m on set, polishing nail art designs for upcoming collections and other days, I’m guiding virtual nail art workshops for teams in Dubai. The variety keeps me on my toes and always excited to get to work.

What are your top three go-to essie nail colours?

A bright red like Too Too Hot; a brightening sheer pink like Mademoiselle; and a cheerful pastel like Lilacism.


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