Is it really French?
Maybe. The origins of the manicure are unclear. Some insist it began in the French salons of the 19th century. Others argue it didn’t surface until the 1930s, when cosmetician Max Factor used a similar design to offset the overly moisturized hands of the Parisian noblesse. Its recent popularity, however, is likely due to Jeff Pink, founder of Orly nailcare.
After a base coat has been applied by the therapist/nail technician, a natural pink, beige or nude polish is applied to each nail. Once dry, a neat white tip will be created on each (where each nail separates from the nailbed) using an opaque white varnish or, less commonly, a nail crayon.
Sometimes this process is reversed, with the white tip created before the colored varnish is applied on top, to create a more understated look. Once the varnish and tips are dry, a further top coat will be applied to protect the nails and enhance durability.