Cult-Classics : Essie Mint Candy Apple (was it reformulated?)

Wednesday, November 4, 2015 9 comments

Oh Mint Candy Apple...such a gorgeous shade of mint blue. No

Mint Candy Apple is one of Essie's all time best-selling shades. That doesn't surprise me since mint everything was all the rage a few years ago and it's still going strong. I've owned my bottle of Mint Candy Apple for three years now and this summer I was browsing the Walmart shelves when I came across a bottle of Mint Candy Apple that was a completely different colour than my own bottle at home. My old bottle was blue and this new bottle was green. Was this a case of nail polish changing colour over time? Or did Essie actually re-formulate the colour? I bought that bottle of polish and came home to do some investigating.

After much googling for an answer to my question,  I came up empty handed. Hrrrmph.

That's when I decided to send some emails. I started sending emails to Essie polish headquarters but didn't hear much back, so next I messaged Lauren at @laurenslist on Instagram. She works with Essie Canada so I figured maybe she would have some answers for me. She was such a doll and let me know that the icy mint blue colour of Mint Candy Apple was a manufacturing error - it was always supposed to be a mint green. I also sent an email to one of my contacts at Essie Canada and she sent me back a swift reply, confirming that Essie has indeed changed the colour and formula of Mint Candy Apple. The new formula and correct colour is mint green.

Yay mystery solved!

Want to see how the colour and formula compare to one another? Yeah you do!

Old version of Mint Candy Apple (blue)

When I first got Mint Candy Apple three years ago, I remember questioning why it was such a robin's egg blue...definitely not mint. I still LOVED the colour so I wore it often, but after awhile I kind of stopped wearing it because the formula was such a freaking pain in the butt!
old version of Mint Candy Apple - 2 coats (streaky and lots of ridges)

It applies rather chalky and streaky.  It has the kind of formula that if you use too many brushstrokes it starts pulling up the colour underneath and making bald spots. It also does not self-level very well at all and leaves tons of polish ridges (as you can clearly see in the photos!). With 2 coats it's still very patchy so you need a 3rd to get it completely opaque. I had to apply the 3rd coat thick so that it would cover completely. This makes it take longer to dry.

old version of Mint Candy Apple - 3 coats (still lots of ridges)

Even at 3 coats, my nails are not smooth. It's finally opaque but full of ridges and does not look cute. This polish DEFINITELY needs top coat.

old version of Mint Candy Apple - 3 coats + top coat
You can see above that top coat helps smooth this polish out a lot so a good top coat is a must. The finished product looks fine, but it has definitely been a pain to apply and get it to this point.

new version of Mint Candy Apple (green)

Alrighty, this new colour is definitely what I think of when I think "mint". It leans more to the green side rather than blue.

This new Mint Candy Apple is so much smoother! The formula is 100% better and so much easier to polish with. It self-levels really nicely and is opaque in 2 coats.  

old version of Mint Candy Apple - 2 coats + top coat
This polish still benefits from a coat of top coat but it makes it look smooth and perfect once you do (not just slightly better, like the old version). I'm liking this formula change Essie!

Here's another comparison using these polishes side by side:
The nails with the old Mint Candy Apple look uneven and bumpy and after two coats, my pointer still needs a third coat. Just terrible. Here's a better look from the side:

The nails with the new Mint Candy Apple are smooth as glass and I'm not even wearing top coat in this pic. 

Well the mystery of the blue/green Mint Candy Apple is solved. The old Mint Candy Apple is a beautiful colour but I really do hate the formula. It's no question whether or not the new Mint Candy Apple is better - IT IS!

Just like I mentioned in my Color Discrepancy post, Mint Candy Apple is a colour I suggest you buy in person instead of online. There are still lots of bottles of the old blue version out there. The only place I've seen this new green version is at Walmart, but otherwise London Drugs and Superstore in my area still had a full line up of blue Mint Candy Apple. Of course if you like the colour, by all means get it! Just be prepared to work with it a lot and use a good top coat to get a decent result. My suggestion if you like the colour of the old Mint Candy Apple is to track down a bottle of Blossom Dandy. The colours are similar but the formula of Blossom Dandy is far superior.

...and if you have an old bottle of blue Mint Candy Apple hang onto it! Soon they won't exist anymore and you'll have a rare bottle of polish on your hands.

I'm happy to get to the bottom of this and hopefully answer some questions for you guys, but I wouldn't say ALL my questions about Mint Candy Apple were answered. I'm curious why Essie would wait SIX YEARS to correct a colour that was a "manufacturing error". If Essie always meant Mint Candy Apple to be green, why the wait?

I also noticed while swatching these polishes that they have a different manufacturing number. Essie numbers their polishes in the order they come out so Mint Candy Apple is number 702 (700 hundred polishes!). My new bottle has a manufacturing number of 754, but I've looked that up and that is Brazilliant's number. This could have been just a mistake in labelling on my bottle, except when you google "Mint Candy Apple 702" and "Mint Candy Apple 754" they both come up on websites as Mint Candy Apple. I don't know what that means, but I thought it was interesting so I just threw that info at you ;)

Do you own Mint Candy Apple (old or new version)? What are your thoughts?


  • SarahSews said...

    I own the old one and it has been my summer favorite for years. I always wondered why it wasn't mint! And why it is different than bottles with the same name at Target here in the US.

  • Valia said...

    Helpful post! I own the blue one, I got it this summer and I wondered why it was different from the one in the store.. I like the mint version too though...It is softer..

  • Evinde said...

    To me, as I look at your bottles next to each other, the "blue" one still looks mint, except it has blue tones in it. I wouldn't consider it a straight up blue shade at all. Guess I have the old one then. I don't mind it at all, the new version has been duped so many times by other brands.

  • rrr said...

    Finally an answer!! I always wondered about this! But now I like both shades and I cant find another similar colour in their line that matches the old mint candy apple version. I wish they would keep both colours and just rename one!

  • Kindra said...

    Jael Freedman - You can still find bottles of the old Fiji on the shelves. I found my bottle of old Fiji in my local small town pharmacy (and it was quite dusty too!) Check at small, unfrequented drugstores or salons.

  • Kindra said...

    Rachel Patel - Good call, they totally should have done that since the shades are so different! You can still find bottles of the old Mint Candy Apple at small unfrequented drugstores or salons. Or even bigger chain stores have them...just look through their polishes and you may get lucky ;).

  • Unknown said...

    go figure, i finally bought mint candy apple this past year and while i adored the color, it really does apply like junk. now i know why! i don't know if i'll try to buy the new version, i'm pretty attached to the color of the old one.

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