Top 5 Essie Polishes

(From top down: Fifth Avenue, Topless and Barefoot, Maximillian Strasse Her, Ladylike, Butler Please)

I hate walking by nail polish stands, especially Essie’s. Every time I see that towering wall of shiny polishes staring back at me I feel like my self-control goes out the window. I’ll think to myself “you’ve already got all the shades you need…” but before I know it I’ve fallen in love with a slightly different blue shade and I’m handing over my hard earned cash for yet another polish to add to my ever-growing collection. Oops.

Whether you’re new to Essie polishes or are adding to your stash like me, here are the tried and tested polishes I swear by:

Topless and Barefoot: A nude polish that doesn’t make me look like I’m six feet under? Finally. Being super pale I find that a lot of nude shades (namely Essie’s Sand Tropez) look unflattering on my skin tone to say the least, but that’s not the case here. Topless and Barefoot is a soft beige polish with slight pink undertones that really compliments my fair skin. Becoming opaque after a few coats, this has become my go-to nude polish for when I want something neutral.

Ladylike: A pale mauve shade with hints of grey running through it, this is a great one for working girls or anyone who doesn’t want too much going on with their nails. It’s non-offensive, subtle and will go with any outfit, so if you’re someone that matches your nail polish to your clothes then you’ll love this. I find I reach for Ladylike when I know I want to paint my nails but I can’t decide on a shade for the life of me.

Maximillian Strasse Her: A blatant Lily Pebbles & Vivianna Does Makeup enabled purchase. There’s a good chance you’ve already heard of this shade because a lot of people have fallen in love with it (and for good reason.) Maximillian Strasse Her is a polish that’s like this unique hybrid of cool grey, green and duck egg blue- not a shade you see on the market too often and depending on the light it always looks a little bit different. While most would probably reserve this cool-toned shade for Autumn/Winter, I find myself reaching for it year round because I just love it so much.

Butler Please: I’d describe this as a cobalt, royal blue polish that’s very vivid on the nails and definitely not one for when you want something understated or subtle. I don’t normally go for shades as electric as this but Butler Please is bright without being neon and vivid without being smack bang in your face. It somehow manages to retain this beautiful deep blue shade while still being quite bright. This is another one that I wear year round and I think it looks especially lovely on fair skin. Pale girls unite!

Fifth Avenue: There isn’t too much to say about this but how could I not include a classic red? Fifth Avenue is a vivacious orangey red polish that I think would suit both cool and warm skin tones. It adds a great pop of colour to an all monochrome outfit and it’s the perfect shade to wear during the festive season as well. It’s bold, it’s bright and it’s a brilliant staple shade to have in your collection.

What are your favourite Essie shades?
156 comments so far.

156 responses to “Top 5 Essie Polishes”

  1. These are all so beautiful. I will have to restrain myself from going out and buying them all.. 🙂 Thanks for sharing!


  2. Essie polishes are my favorite! I love Butler Please!

    xx, A Little Dose of Makeup

  3. nycheartsme says:

    I've worn every shade in your post. I love bikini so teeny and cocktail bling.


  4. Love these shades!! Ballet Slippers is also a fave of mine!!

    Mel |

  5. Don't have all of these, but I'm so curious about Butler Please! Currently loving Virgin Snow from Essie! x

  6. Really want to try Maximillian too but I can not find it anywhere 😛

    Maireem | My Fair Autumn | Instagram | Twitter | Snapchat: myfairautumn

  7. Phoebe says:

    Firstly, I love the way you presented the nail polishes in the photo. Very creative and visually appealing.
    I don't have any of these shades of nail polish but think they all look gorgeous. I must admit that I love a particular shade then tend to use that one same color nail polish over and over and over.

  8. Fa nny says:

    I will definitely check out Topless and Barefoot as, being pale myself, I have the same problem with nude nail polishes!

  9. inezdiva says:

    Beautiful, love all the nail polishes

  10. I've never seen Ladylike before but it looks just up my street! My all time favourite would probably have to be Essie's Cocktail Bling!

  11. Ahh I want all of these shades now haha! Thanks for sharing! x


  12. Ellabella says:

    I love Essie. They have such lovely shades! My favorite shade is Angora Cardi.


  13. I haven't got any Essie nail polishes because nail polishes really don't attract me much. The shades you have chosen are really pretty especially the pastels, good for every mood.

    Chaste & Beautiful

  14. I love these colours for spring! My favourite for winter is shearling darling!

  15. Ana Picazzo says:

    I completely relate! You can never own too many nail polishes, there are just so many shades and getting a new one never hurts, specially from Essie! It's such a great and quality brand. Its always great to stop at your blog! I've noticed that it's grown so much it the last few months, you should totally make a blogpost with advice for us new bloggers!

    Wishing you well,


    • Wow thank you so much Ana, that's probably one of my favourite comments that I've ever gotten. I have actually been putting quite a bit of extra effort into my blog over the past few months so it makes me really happy that it's showing! I'll definitely think about doing a post like that for future, thanks for the great idea 🙂

  16. Charlotte says:

    I love the look and sound of Maximillian Strasse Her and Ladylike. I've never actually tried Essie polishes as I think that they're quite expensive but the shades are just gorgeous!
    Charlotte //

  17. I do love my Essie polishes, was wearing Thigh High for a good part of winter. Fifth avenue is definitely something I need in my collection! I'm loving the look of Urban Jungle too

    http://www.Barely There | British Beauty & Lifestyle blog


  18. Gabrielle says:

    I'm a sucker for nude shades, so needless to say both Topless & Barefoot and Ladylike have caught my eye! Nudes have the ability to look so feminine and flattering on most nails.

    Gabrielle | A Glass Of Ice

  19. I love the look of Ladylike and Butler Please! I don't think I've come across either before but I'll have to see if I can find them online 🙂 xx

    Jasmine Talks Beauty

  20. Fifth Avenue is my all time fave! It's such a classic shade that I know I'll always have in my collection, and I find the formula to be amazing too, it looks opaque in just one coat. I love the name too 🙂 Going to have to check out the other colours you've recommended!
    Brigitte x |

  21. I love Ladylike! It's such a classy shade and the funny thing is that it's also one of those colors that I reach for whenever I can't decide on a color, haha 🙂

    Thirteen Thoughts

  22. Emily says:

    Butler Please looks like an amazing shade 🙂

    Emily / The Mini Mermaid

  23. Ohhh I love these recommendations. Butler Blue will be gorgeous when the summer rolls around! xx

  24. Oooh – I love these Essie Polishes! They're absolutely gorgeous and all so different, beautiful! 🙂

    Layla xx

  25. Gorgeous. I need more Essie in my life! xx

    Jasmine /

  26. Shell says:

    Topless & Barefoot is on my never-ending wish list – my Essie & Zoya wish lists in particular are quite long! Good to know it'll suit my pale self. :o) I used to have Butler Please & that was nice too, but I didn't use it as much for some reason.

    My favourite Essie shades are either bright or blue-ish: Saltwater Happy (been loving this one this summer!), Strut Your Stuff & In The Cab-Ana.

    • Saltwater Happy is such a beautiful looking shade, I can't believe I don't already own that one actually! I also haven't tried any Zoya polishes before, I'd love to but I have no idea where to buy them.

  27. So many pretty shades! I'm not a huge nail polish wearer as I find it really damages my fingernails but I do wear it on my toes a lot and just the other day I was thinking I want to pick up a nice dusty pink shade and Ladylike looks like a great option.

    jessica –

  28. Bridget Dean says:

    Loved this post and your blog! Essie has always been one of my favourite brands for nail polishes, will have to try these colours out, they are so pretty! xxx

  29. Kathryn says:

    Essie always seems to have beautiful colors, and really good quality. That cobalt blue is gorgeous!

  30. Laura Scott says:

    I haven't tried many of Essie's nail polishes however they do look beautiful. The blue colour is stunning!

    Laura xo

  31. Rochelle Fox says:

    Love all the nail polishes. Great colour.
    Good vibes, Fox
    check out my latest Vlog

  32. Velvet Blush says:

    Ladylike sounds absolutely gorgeous! I have a few Essie polishes but I can't remember the names off the top of my head 🙂

    Velvet Blush

  33. Cara E says:

    Love all the pastel shades! I need to invest in more Essie polishes xx

  34. Emily Santos says:

    Essie is one of my favourite brands … I recently saw a gold glittery one that I LOVE!

    A Day In Durham

  35. Blush Canvas says:

    I actually don't have any of these even though I have a lot of Essie polishes! I really like your picks. I do like Chills and Thrills which is a lighter dustier version of Butler Please. I do feel like buying Cocktail Bling though!

    Advaita | Blush Canvas

  36. Adele Miner says:

    Loving these, the pale pinks are gorgeous! I really like your blog, let me know if you would like to follow each other!

  37. angelina says:

    I have Butler Please as well, it's definitely a lot brighter than I typically go for too! It's surprising how easily it goes with any color though, I wear it all the time in the summer.

    Angelina Is | Bloglovin'

  38. Osiarah says:

    I haven't tried Essie's nail polishes yet, but I saw a lot of review about them and they look so great.
    The shades are so beautiful, the Ladylike is gorgeous!

    Camy xx

  39. Ella Pinto says:

    You know, I'm the same way with lipsticks that you are with nail polishes. I lose my self control a little bit and often forget that I do infact own too many shades. But it's what I love the most in makeup so why not, right?

    I own a few essie nail polishes but I have to be honest and say I've never actually used them. I'm a bit a ashamed!

    Ella Pinto xx

  40. Lisa says:

    My favourite Essie shades are Ballet Slippers and Nice is Nice! I love essie, always great quality never disappoints!

    This Damsel Loves Blog

  41. Fionna says:

    omg i LOVE these shades 😮 essie is one of my fave nail polish brands. i'm starting my own mini collection of them haha. i have ladylike and it's one of my faves. looks so good with my skintone. i do want to try that lighter blue that you have there x

  42. Jenny says:

    The pastel shades are so pretty! Ladylike is a must have for me this Spring x

    Jenny | Krystel Couture

  43. veebz boo says:

    All of these shades look beautiful and perfect for the hotter months! I love pastel and soft toned shades, it gets me excited for Spring. Barefoot and Topless are shades that I need to clearly invest in.:D – Gold Smokey Eye with a Pink Liquid Lip

  44. Claire says:

    Gorgeous selection, Butler Please is one definitely one of my personal favourites, it's the perfect shade of blue for my Caspar like hands 😉
    xxx Claire

  45. Alona says:

    I've been looking to get some essie nail polishes! These are great. Definitely going to get some 🙂 x Alona

  46. Lovely shades, I love the look of Ladylike for a everyday natural shade.

    Nicole xx |

  47. wheetnee says:

    I have butler please, it's gorgeous! Maximillian Strasse Her…now I need a colour like that! The pale green-grey is super pretty!!

    Macarons and Mischief

  48. Emily♡ says:

    Butler Please looks like such a gorgeous shade! Adding it to my wishlist 🙂


  49. All great but my favourite is Sand Tropez!


  50. Val says:

    I like the periwinkle blue colour. It;s my perfect summer shade. gorgeous photos too xx

  51. Kate Flint says:

    My favourites are Ladylike and Bikini So Teeny! Topless & Barefoot and Butler Please both are screaming to be added to my collection now haha 🙂 Lovely post!

    Kate |

  52. Farrah says:

    I have Butler Please too, I do not use it much, but your description is exactly right!
    Blue Jazzmin

    • When I first bought Butler please I actually didn't tend to use it too much either, but then I sort of got used to how vibrant it was and before I knew it I was wearing it regularly.

  53. lisaxbeauty says:

    I've never tried any essie nail polishes, but after reading your post, i will have to try them out!

  54. Mira L. says:

    All of these shades look amazing, Essie is my favourite nail polish brand. I would love to try Maximilian Strasse Her. x

  55. How stunning is Lady Like, its so pretty ♥

  56. May Cho says:

    I have never used Essie polishes in my life. I'm pretty that's a sin in the blogging world, but I've just never gotten my hands on them before. These all look fantastic though! I want to try Topless and Barefoot!


  57. These look gorgeous! I love Essie polishes, they are pigmented and last a long time on me. My favourite is Barefoot, I need it in my life ASAP.


  58. Fifth Avenue is looking a lot like my jam <3 After barely wearing any polish this winter (well over here) I've finally put on some more colour in celebration of almost spring haha. I'm loving the other colours as well so need to go check those ones out too, thanks for sharing!

    • So happy you liked this post Stacey. I barely wore any polish in winter either, it was only when the weather started to get warmer that I felt like painting my nails again 🙂

  59. Cheyanne says:

    Lovin' Ladylike! Gorgeous versatile colour… looks like I'm going to have to take a trip to the store!

    xox Cheyanne

  60. Cindy Yue says:

    I've seriously been trying to find Fifth Avenue for what seems like forever, I'm on the hunt for a perfect bright red-orange and feel like this one would be perfect! Maximillian Strasse Her always calls to me whenever I see Anna or Lily wearing it in one of their videos – it looks like the perfect neutral with a pop of color! My favorites are definitely Sand Tropez and After Schoolboy Blazer!

    Cindy |

    • I actually bought Maximillian Strasse Her because of Anna and Lily, it always looked so nice on them. Love the look of After School Boy Blazer as well, adding that one to my list!

  61. Chantalle says:

    Essie is definitely one of my favourite nail polish shades. And I am also exactly the same! No matter how many times I've visited the Essie stand I always seem to find another same but different shade that I just need to get *sigh* Butler please is gorgeous blue, but my favorite shades are Merino Cool and Neo Whimsical, though those nude shades look awfully lovely … haha x

    Chantalle |

  62. Remi Sabbah says:

    Such beautiful colour choices! Perfect for spring! <3 xxx
    Check out what's new on the blog:

  63. Alk says:

    My favourite shade is Lovie Dovie.. 🙂

    I'm a nail polish lover too!

  64. MarinaSays says:

    I actually really like how these colors look together. I can imagine furniture in these colors even! Love it
    Marina /

  65. Elle Sees says:

    topless and barefoot is a must-have for me!! there's a periwinkle one that i love that i cannot remember the shade of righ now!

  66. Pastel colors are so pretty! These are all so beautiful.

  67. I'm still so in love with these Essie polishes – think I need to go shopping and add a few more colours to the collection, they're just so pretty!

    Layla xx

  68. Ah – everytime I look at this I really want to go shopping, the colours are just gorgeous and I love everything about the colours!!!!!! Got to love Essie, such a great brand! 🙂

    Layla xx

  69. I love your introduction! LOL
    I think my favourite from the four is Butler Please… Soo pretty. 🙂

  70. Jackie Jean says:

    Do you feel like you always pick up the ones you already own? haha you're just drawn to them right off the bat. Thanks for the post, a couple i'll be adding to my collection for sure!

  71. I absolutely looove Essie! I used to not care what my nail polish brand is and one day I stumbled upon this pretty color *ahem "Ladylike"* and I thought I have to have that! Ever since then, I never looked back so now I always buy Essie polish because they go on soo smoothly and they last very long. Great post 🙂 xx


  72. Very pretty shades. I also bought Essie polish they are very long lasting and comes in very beautiful shades. Now onwards i don't use any other brand of nailpaint. Very nice.
    Lifecell Cream 🙂

  73. I love Essie brand. They always has been in the first number if we talk about their nail polish brands. I liked their shades because the colors are unique and the texture is quite thick.

    pauline@Dermology anti aging cream and serum

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