The 90s were the breeding ground for a beauty revolution. Off went the eyebrows, on went the brown lipstick and for those too young to properly participate, neat squares of cardboard with rows of plastic, stick-on earrings in varying jewel shapes and tones pacified us. It was the era of Sinéad O'Connor and DIY beauty hacks, often pursued over the bathroom sink. And now, it appears that same spirit is with us once again.
Enter Flowerbed nails, the Bondi-born DIY nail brand brought to you by creative duo Crimson Dunstan and Bridie Alman. As with many projects birthed during the pandemic, the idea for Flowerbed nails came to Dunstan and Alman out of necessity. "We were failing with our at-home attempts to create nail art. When salons reopened, we were too broke to afford professional manis and were keen to find a way to do it ourselves.”
This hits right in my dermis as the biggest beauty casualty of Sydney's current lockdown is my unsightly nails.
Citing A$AP Rocky and Harry Styles as wells of inspiration, it seems fitting that Flowerbed's mantra is "Nail art for people". The brand ignores passé gendered beauty marketing and delights in the many possibilities of what a manicure can be.
The first product drop features a sheet of playful decals inspired by both nineties and noughties motifs. Red cherries are in good company next to an assortment of smiley faces, chillies, yin and yang symbols and pastel flowers. So! Many! Possibilities!
But where Flowerbed truly seduces us is in its thoughtfulness. The current decals are affordable, last up to two weeks and were tried and tested voluntarily by Dunstan and Almans friends at house parties, not on animals.
“During the design process, we’d get a bunch of friends around for drinks and play with their nails until we unanimously decided on the most loved designs, long-lasting staying power and easy-to-use stickers," said Alman.
And if you've got the thirst for more, Dunstan and Alman have promised future drops featuring collaborations with other local artists, musicians and creatives.
Now I can stop walking around with my hands in fists.