You'll recall that a while back I started a new job and posted about sticking to neutrals and other non-attention-getting shades until I got the lay of the land.
I wore Rescue Beauty Lounge Grunge for one of my interviews and for my first couple days on the job and I really liked it. This picture is from back then, but it reminds me of something I wore more recently, Savvy French Cafe.
I loved this, too. It really does remind me of a cup of coffee with extra extra cream (the way I like it) and possibly a bit of caramel syrup? I actually got some comments on this because I had been wearing so much blue! Teal! Hot yellow! lately that paradoxically, everyone noticed the neutral. Go figure.
It didn't take long for me to figure out that pretty much anything goes (nail color wise) at my workplace, which has been great in terms of making my way through my collection and trying stuff pretty much whenever I want. Sometimes though there's an occasion where day-glo orange or green jelly isn't really entirely right. For instance a few weekends ago I attended a bridal shower at an art museum and I liked the sound of dark red nails with my black and camel dress.
Malaga Wine has long been a favorite of mine, and I was happy to pull it out after a long hiatus. To me, a chic red nail is its own kind of neutral. I went through a long stretch of wearing either Malaga Wine or OPI's Mrs. O'Leary's BBQ exclusively, and while I'm more a fan of variety these days, I still have a special place in my heart for these colors.
Bright tomato reds can also fall into the category of alternative neutrals. This is one that I can see Joan Holloway on Mad Men wearing.
I put this on recently after chopping my nails down in anticipation of my upcoming move. Shortly after doing this I potato-peelered one of my nails to such an extent that even Orly Nail Rescue, which I normally love, was no help. Boo hoo.
In my opinion a good red "neutral" is free of shimmer or glitter, but that's just me. Berry shades can also fit this neutral bill and some people may find them a bit fresher or just a better match with their skin tone.