Last week we took a tour of the Middle East, and this week we will visit Africa! A huge continent with vast differences in the cities that inspire our nail polishes, there’s lots to discover. While there are many polish colors named after African cities, this installment will be a two part-er. One with cities around the African continent. The other one for cities in the North African country of Morocco (since we have quite a few)! Let’s start our tour, shall we?
The capital of Egypt is set along the winding Nile River. Cairo is most commonly associated with ancient Egypt and the glittering antiquities found there.
You won’t find any artifacts in the Pyramids of Giza. But they are a sight to see as they’re one of the original Seven Wonders of the World. If you do want to see sarcophagi, jewelry, and other artifacts, the Egyptian Museum is where you want to go. The main attraction there is the Tutankhamun exhibit, where they have his golden funeral mask on display! Our bronze Cairo polish is metallic and sparkly, like many of the treasures found in the city it’s inspired by.
The capital of Senegal is in West Africa, touching the Atlantic sea, making it a big port city. But what inspired our Dakar polish to be a pretty shade of pink? Well, less than an hour away from the city lies an unusual lake that would shock any unsuspecting visitor.
The water in the lake is a vivid pink color! Only a few narrow sand dunes separate the Atlantic Ocean from Lake Retba (or Lac Rose known by locals). Being so close, this little lake’s salt content is extremely high and compares to that of the Dead Sea. The distinct color, caused by Dunaliella salina bacteria, absorbs the sun and emits a red pigment. Few living organisms can survive in the lake due to its salt content. Because of that, it’s a tourist spot, so make sure you visit this unusual (but pretty!) pink lake if you visit Dakar!
This city in Nigeria is the most populous on the African continent. It is also one of the fastest-growing cities in the world. But besides being extremely populated and fast-growing, this city has lots to offer.
Lagos is well known for Victoria Island and its beach resorts, boutiques, and nightlife. To the north, Lagos Island houses the Nigerian National Museum. This museum has a notable collection of Nigerian art, which includes statues, carvings, and archaeological exhibits. Freedom Park, located in the middle of downtown Lagos, is a memorial and leisure park. Today, the park is a venue for many diverse events. Last but not least, the Lagos Lagoons the city sprawls across inspire the teal color of our polish.
Pretoria, South Africa
The last city on this tour’s stop: Pretoria! The administrative capital of South Africa, it straddles the Apies River and spreads into the foothills of the Magaliesberg mountains. South Africa has three capital cities, and each capital serves as a seat of government. Pretoria is a beautiful city, but what makes it even more so (and what inspired our polish color!) are its Jacaranda trees.
These trees drape the city in a magnificent purple color from September to November. In Pretoria’s Celliers Street, there is a plaque commemorating the first two Jacaranda trees planted in 1888. Pretoria is sometimes endearingly referred to as Jacaranda City. Even sweeter, some believe the flowers have an air of magic around them. South Africa’s University students believe if a Jacaranda flower falls on your head during exams, you’ll pass all your classes!