I recently went out for a drink with an old friend from high school. She was only in town for the night, so we had to cram about two years of catching up into the 45 minutes before my big girl bedtime (11 PM – yes, Mom, I am responsible-ish).
It was SO NICE to see her (shout out, Molly!), but that’s not what this is about.
This is about nail polish.
Molly and I were talking about being in our 20s, broke, living in cities, and how we’re baffled by the very idea of anyone ever “having it together.” I confessed to my (very real) CVS addiction, and we immediately bonded over our shared inability to leave any drug store without purchasing “one” “small” “treat.”*
Having recognized our mutual weakness, IT HIT ME. Sharing nail polish doesn’t have to be just something you do with your friends when you’re in the same place! How easy and awesome would it be to have a pen pal nail polish situation, in which you and your friends mail your colors all around to one another? So easy and awesome. And not gross, like sharing lipsticks or ANY eye makeup (sorry to all my friends from 2002 - present - future, you are NEVER getting your eye germs on my liner).**
Makeup shit I will and will not share with friends.
Like Molly so wisely said, you only really wear a new nail polish three or so times before the novelty wears off or you move on to the next, and then you maybe don’t revisit it for another year. Swapping with a friend saves you valuable beer money and can encourage you to *~try new things~*, which people keep telling me is a good thing to do.
The best benefit of this kind of trade is straight up talking to your distance friends. When your friends are far away (like most of mine are), it can be SO HARD to keep in touch. Corresponding with a "purpose" usually has the power to force you to do it, because it feels WAY worse to not respond to someone's letter or care package than it does to forget about a text!
Share your beauty aisle spoils! Maybe we’re all spending too much on little things, to make ourselves feel better about not having any idea what adult life is supposed to be (HEAVY!), but maybe that money we spend can go the extra mile to make someone else feel good, too. We all need our friends wicked bad!!!
OTHER THINGS IT COULD BE COOL TO SWAP/CYCLE WITH FRIENDS:
Shoes. Shoes. Shoes.
Winter jackets (back and forth each year, it’s like new again when you get it back! Smoker friends, get that shit dry cleaned before returning it, though ;))
Books duh obviously why am I even writing this
Accessories - like *statement* shit that would get too tired if you wore it a million times yourself
Art supplies - doing one thing for too long starts to feel stale! Trade your embroidery needles for your friend’s gouache and get going.
BONUS FRIEND SWAP TIPS:
- Get real creative with it and send something back and forth you can each add to, like a piece of art or clothing.
Send something that matches or is related to whatever you’re sharing as a surprise. Example: If you’re lending a skinny gold belt with a lion’s head as the buckle, you could send a gold bangle or pair of socks (new ones, obvi) with lions on them as well.
- Think about the person you’re sharing with, not about what you want to get rid of!!!!
*Excessive quotations meant to evoke self-directed sarcasm.
**I realize that sharing nail polish MAY also be considered by some to be kind of gross or unsanitary as well. To anyone reading this post who is grossed out by the idea of sharing nail polish, I'm kind of sorry! What's something else that's more up your alley?