Does Queen Elizabeth II refuse to dirty her nails with any polish other than Essie’s “Ballet Slippers”? Join me on a quest for truth.
Today the Sun asks, “FANCY getting your nails painted with a polish that’s fit for a Queen? Well if you pop down to your local high street and buy a bottle of Essie’s Nail Lacquer in Ballet Slippers, you’ll be doing just that.” They say that Elizabeth “refuses to wear any other colour.”
This is in fact the second time this news has made the rounds; the tidbit was previously discovered in 2013 by the Huffington Post. This would put Queen Elizabeth in good company with brides everywhere and also at least one Jezebel staffer. Unfortunately, the source is Essie’s website, which features a timeline of their successes which includes the entry for 1989: “Queen Elizabeth’s hairdresser sends Essie a letter requesting Ballet Slippers—the only color Her Majesty would wear.”
Of course, a brand’s website is not always the most reliable source of information about that brand’s cultural impact, especially once it’s been run through the #viral #content #hype #machine. And so began my search for independent confirmation of this vital piece of royal beauty trivia.
I could have contacted the palace for comment, but they famously won’t comment on anything, so I didn’t have much hope for any clarification regarding the Queen’s preferred nail polish. Searches in Lexis Nexis for “Queen Elizabeth nail polish” and “Queen Elizabeth nail varnish” turned up nothing more than a Business Insider article based on the same info from the Essie website.
So I turned to Getty Images and began slowly working my way through the 51,238 photographs within our subscription that surfaced upon searching Queen Elizabeth’s name. Of course, she wears gloves for many of her appearances, so that’s an entire genre of photograph that’s useless.
However, there are a few images of Her Majesty bare-handed. Perhaps the most promising:
I’m sorry to say that, like every MAJOR SPECIAL EVENT NEW DISCOVERY aired on television regarding the Pyramids, this investigation has been inconclusive. What we see in these photos could be Ballet Slippers applied very, very lightly, or it could be that the Queen rarely wears nail polish but when she does it’s Ballet Slippers and it just doesn’t show up in many photographs, or it could be that she’s moved on since 1989. It’s entirely possible that she does or has in the past worn the shade—the neutral pink has been very popular for a very long time—but unfortunately we cannot confirm with absolute confidence.
However, we’re pretty sure she wears Elizabeth Arden lipstick and Floris scent.