Sunday, March 31, 2013

Talking Nail Art With Essie's Rita Remark

Essie Canada's Lead Nail Artist, Rita Remark; Photo by Madelyn Chung

Originally posted on

Rita Remark certainly had her (perfectly manicured) hands full at World MasterCard Fashion Week. As the lead nail artist for Essie Canada, the Toronto native was responsible for creating nail looks for eight shows, including Chloe comme Parris, Pink Tartan and MIZ by Izzy Camilleri.

We caught up with Remark backstage at the tents to chat about her creative process and the nail trends we should expect for fall.

styleswept: How do you create the nail looks for the shows?

RITA REMARK: Designs for the runway are always a collaboration between myself and the designer and the stylist. It's all about how they want the nails to complement the clothing -- whether they want them to stand out or whether they want them to just seamlessly work with the garments.

styleswept: What's the creative process like?

RR: When [the designer is] direct in his intent and knows exactly how he wants the nails, it's very easy for me. It's looking at the clothing and going, okay, let's match the colours to the clothing. The only time when my creative process is really slow moving is when [the designers] give me a lot of options. If they say, "This is my collection, do whatever you want," that's when I'm overwhelmed, and I'm thinking okay..I have too many ideas!

styleswept: Where do you find inspiration?

RR: I see inspiration in paintings, architecture...actually somebody unwrapped a candy wrapper the other day that had silver, pink and blue on it, and I said, I could work with that! It's all about taking what's around you. My favourite thing, honestly, is when someone brings in clothing or brings in a piece of wallpaper and says, "Let's put that on a nail." I love working from something, finding that inspiration, and putting it on a nail plate. It's the best.

styleswept: What are some of the nail trends we can look forward to seeing for fall?

RR: This year we had a lot of texture on the nails. We did one nail look that was a new take on the French manicure [at MIZ by Izzy Camilleri]; two coats of Licorice, which is a really deep black, followed by a coat of Matte About You, which turned the nail completely shine-free. Then, we used the No Chips Ahead top coat which is super shiny just along the was so contemporary, it was just like a French manicure at midnight that looked beautiful!

Nails at MIZ by Izzy Camilleri; Photo Courtesy Essie Canada

styleswept: How can we create the textured nail look at home?

RR: You don't need to buy anything! You can use the polishes that you have at home. There are all of these textured nail polishes coming out, but it's not that can be how you manipulate the colour on the nail plate that makes it seem like it has texture.

We had this great oil spill look from Chloe come Parris by using all metallic nail polishes. We had five different shades, then we swirled them on the nail plate in such a way that made it literally look like it had just been dropped on the ground. It was a really beautiful, oil slick finish. The trick behind is it using all metallic shades, because as soon as you start using opaques, it looks like marble.

Oil spill nails at Chloe comme Parris; Photo Courtesy Essie Canada

styleswept: How do you predict nail trends?

RR: It comes from fashion, it comes from beauty. I think we're all inspired by one another which I think is great when you work with a team of really great people. We always bounce off ideas from one another. I think working in a team of people who are all inspired is what keeps us all current, keeps us all starting new ideas that are trends that form later on.

styleswept: What was your favourite nail look you created this season?

RR: I don't like to pick a favourite! I definitely think as far as wearable, I love the matte looks that we've created, [like] the look created for Pink Tartan. It was just two coats of Sand Tropez, which is a nude without any pink in it. It's very contemporary as far as nude goes, because it's not necessarily skin-flattering. It looks very dull, and that's what I love about it. We put a matte coat over top of it, and it became a manicure that you would have never seen five years ago. It's contemporary, it's art.

Nails at Pink Tartan; Photo Courtesy Essie Canada

styleswept: What are you wearing on your nails today?

RR: Essie sleek sticks! During fashion week, I change my nails everyday -- my hands are photographed constantly! Even if it takes half hour out of my sleeping time, this is more necessary! I always decide [how to do my nails] the morning of...after I put on my outfit, I think, "How am I going to accessorize it?" It's very sporadic! But on myself, I love playing with metallics, because every time I look down at my hand they look like jewelry. It's all about hardware!

Rita's nail look du jour. Photo by Madelyn Chung

Which nail look do you like best?

No comments:

Post a Comment