Here’s some fast facts to get out of the way:
- I love nail polish.
- OPI is my preferred brand, mostly because I worked at a nail salon for three years and that was their primary lacquer of choice. I did inventory often and spent some serious quality time with those beautiful black caps.
- I love a good value set. Purchasing Sephora Favorites is pretty much sole the reason I get VIB/ VIB Rouge status.
- I am an organization nerd.
- I collect mugs.
So number five might not be completely relevant but I thought I’d throw that in there in case you might be wondering, “uh… Adrianna… why are you keeping nail polish in a mug?”.
My rationale behind picking up mini collections are that I am not likely to use up a whole full size nail polish, and in the case that I use up a mini bottle, it would be worth it for me to track down the full size. Like Sephora Favorites sets, it’s a good way to have a sampler of colours without investing in multiple bottles from whole collections.
The first OPI mini set I got was the “Perfect Ten” which had most of the Coca Cola collection with a top coat and Nail Envy. It was $20 at Winners and my thought process was that it was a good deal, working out to $2 per 0.125 oz bottle.
I’ve also been given hand-me-down nail polish by people who didn’t need/ want them anymore. The bottles are all still pretty much full and while it might seem strange to be using someone else’s old polish, it’s really no weirder than getting your nails done at salons. Chances are, that brush has touched A LOT of nails.
Because I acquired these during the time I worked at the salon, I was getting my nails done there and wasn’t using my own colours so they ended up sitting in a tote under the bathroom sink. At the beginning of 2016, I took off my acrylics and started doing my own nails so the tote came out and I finally went through these colours. Included with the polish I received was about a dozen mini bottles, most of which looked like they’d never been opened.
The tricky thing is that unlike the Coca Cola collection where I knew the colour names both from the box and from working at the salon, I didn’t know what collections these new-to-me polishes were from. It might sound silly but polish names are part of the reason why I love OPI. I like being able to say what colour I’m wearing whether in person or tagged in an Instagram picture. So the Nancy Drew-ing began by looking through old collections on Google.
When my sleuthing resulted in positive results I wanted to make a record of the names or label them because unlike full size OPI polishes, or even mini bottles from other brands, there is no sticker on the bottom of these little bottles. They do have stamped numbers which helped me with identifying the collections in question but aren’t a practical way of picking up a bottle and being able to quickly identify the actual name.
I thought about using a white-out pen to write the names on the lid of the bottles and while digging through my desk drawer to find one, I instead stumbled upon a better idea! Using my newest mini set (that Iceland collection is SO good!) I thought I’d show you how I label my mini OPI polishes!
Every time OPI releases a new collection, they usually come out with complementary mini sets. You can usually find older ones discounted at salon supply stores or department stores like Winners or Marshalls. At full price, these come in around $18 CAD when first released, so it works out to just under $5 for each mini bottle. Maybe not the best deal but we can debate that another time.
For the Iceland collection, OPI released this set of four colours (from left to right: Reykjavik has All The Hot Spots, Aurora Berry-Alis, Less is Norse, and Suzi And The Arctic Fox) in their normal formula, as well as a mini starter set for their Infinite Shine line.
As I mentioned before, the mini polishes don’t have the typical shade indicator sticker on the bottom as the large bottles do. They instead have a ring of raised bumps and a stamped number of some kind, neither of which are very effective when you just want to look at a polish and know the exact name.
When I was looking through my desk drawer for a white-out pen to write the polish names on the lids, I stumbled upon my package of paper reinforcements. If you don’t know what these are (which I didn’t when I saw the phrase on my school supply list for the first time) they’re ring-shaped stickers that you use when notebook/ binder paper rips from the rings. You place the reinforcement over the rip to recreate a hole-punch circle that the binder ring can fit through, making it more secure. This package was purchased for the 2004 school year and it’s still mostly full. As handy as they can come in fixing ripped lined paper, I felt this new purpose for them was truly their calling.
Using a pen, I transcribe each polish name onto a single reinforcement circle. If the name is really long I’ll throw in an ellipsis (…) either in the middle or the end just so it’s clear what colour it is. I don’t have the tidiest printing but aside from this blog post, no one is going to see these stickers but me so I don’t mind too much. I personally like using Sharpie fineliners for this since I always have them around and it looks more uniform than other pens I have. Of course, if you’d like to do this for your own polishes, be sure to use whatever works best for you!
I love that the reinforcements fit PERFECTLY on the bottom of the little bottles. Using the little bumps as a guide, I fit them around the edge of the base. I haven’t had a problem with them coming un-stuck even though the stickers are over a decade old.
I personally love how this looks and appreciate that it’s similar to the stickers that are usually found on nail polish. I am REALLY glad I didn’t go through and use a white-out pen to deface the sides of all the little lids! A nice aspect of this system is that if I ever want to change my system or anything, it’s super easy just to remove the sticker from the bottom of the polishes.
Currently I store all the baby OPIs in a mug. We touched on this at the beginning of the post, and to be honest I kind of dig it. I used a mason jar previously (so very Pinterest-shabby-chic-wedding circa 2013, right?) but I like the mug better because they’re easier to get in and out. Plus is more me, anyway.
And it’s cute, right?
Thanks so much for checking out this post! I hope you found it helpful, or even just interesting! Let me know if you try it out or if you have another way you organize your baby OPI polishes! I’d love to hear from you, as always!
If you’d like to check out the video where I hauled the mini Iceland collection set, check out the following video 🙂
Also this post is totally not sponsored at all. I just really love OPI.