Happy 11/11/11! To celebrate my first Veteran’s day as a Navy wife, today I’m writing about what really matters in life. Just kidding. But a serious “Thank you” to everyone who has served and is currently serving our country. Thoughts and prayers for a safe return are with friends and everyone overseas.

Now, for a beauty identity crisis….

Ok, so I have had acrylic and/or gel nails since the ninth grade. A very long story about semi-formals, proms, and other excuses along the way have led me to this place where I have no idea what my natural nails look like anymore. I’m sure they’re very weak and somewhat useless, and this has been part of my rationale defending the twice-monthly manicure appointments to maintain my ever-French manicure. The appointment itself was my own guilty pleasure-my “me” time. Sitting there, amidst the nail files, drills and polishes, felt as natural as brushing my teeth. I have had no need to ever question this frivolity, something I deemed a necessary part of my beauty regimen and existence.

Until now.

My new husband has recently informed me that he does not like them. Not a shock. I knew he didn’t love them and never pictured himself with someone who has fake nails (I mean, who else has fake nails constantly at 17?) But as our lives progressed, and my nail habit showed no sign of dissipating like my perm, I figured he just sort of accepted it. Like my addiction to high heels and Hershey almond kisses. Thankfully I had my nails recently done for this shot, taken moments after we became engaged this past December:) What if I had chipped polish?

But today, during an incident of chocolate-chip-cookie-dough-stuck-under-my-nails, he informed me that he actually disliked them. Not just the absence of liking them, but an active distaste. Okayyy.

I have to admit, my little world was sort of shattered. Something as silly as gel on the tips of my fingers caused my husband to like me less than the maximum amount. This really shook my confidence. I expressed my surprise reaction to him, and he informed me how unnatural he saw the notion of attaching plastic to your body(yes, hence, the term “artificial nails” I wasn’t going for natural!) I never went for the long, crazy, colorful nails- just tasteful, short, squared (or “squoval” if we are being technical) French nails with white tips. But apparently, it’s still too unnatural for him to understand.

So I have been seriously considering giving up the fake nails. I considered it once before, right before I moved to Paris for a few months. I was a bit wary of tracking down a nail salon in Paris to continue the look that I held so dear- but a French manicure shouldn’t be too hard to accomplish in France, right? So I stashed my Euros away for my monthly treat to the little salon, and indulged myself to my little slice of home, in a new but comfortingly familiar nail salon on the Left Bank.

With all that devotion to keeping my nails constantly French, what am I to do now? Try colors? That brings me to the issue of chipped nail polish. Hate it. Like an abnormal amount of loathing- makes me uncomfortable. Another one of my rationales for the expense of my artificial little friends- I’d be re-applying some sort of polish every few days to prevent the OCD twitch that draws my eye to the one area of imperfect polish.

I still haven’t made up my mind. I still haven’t found my new salon in Charleston yet. When I finally do go in for my first appointment, will I ask them how they do gel tips, or will I ask for a purge of all thing plastic and let my fingertips go au nautrel for the first time in eight years? Quite the manicure meltdown, yes?

I shall keep you updated as I continue on this new journey of self discovery and salon treatments. Thoughts?

Media Credits:

first photo of my engagement ring courtesy of my iPhone, December 20, 2010

second photo courtesy of timesofindia.indiatimes.com

third photo courtesy of smartnow.com