Monday, May 17, 2010

Well, hmmm...time for a Helmer or join a support group?

Every 3 months I rearrange all of my polishes and after just finishing up this little task, I've got to ask myself--what in the hell? Seriously. I really like/need to be able to see my polishes, so I've resisted getting a Helmer or a similar storage product. But I think it's time to do something, I'm just not sure what.

Above: This is basically an overview of how I store my polishes, and sadly, that's not all of them. But there really isn't any more room, so I'm open to suggestions. My untried's are on the smaller shelf to the right, boxed sets are on the top shelf, and treatments and nail art (Konad, decals) are in the boxes on the top shelf.
Above: I reorganize them every 3 months, because they're in order by brand, and then loosely in order by color within the brand. After I use a polish, I put it in with the others of that brand, but not necessarily in color order, which is why I need to sort them out after several months.
Below: You can see how far behind I am on swatching, because that's the Wizard of Ooh Ahz set on the top, which I've had since they first came out.
So what to do? At the risk of my photos ending up on some hoarder's support board, I thought I'd show you my updated stash and ask for your opinions on a better storage solution. This system works pretty well, but I've outgrown it. There's never been an official count done, but I'm sure it's well over 1,000 when I figure in what's not pictured. I added 2 more shelves over the weekend, because The China Glaze and OPI shelves were full, and I still have quite a few that I haven't used (that's an understatement!). So I left some space for more of those brands and several other brands on the top shelf that I know I have a lot more of. I have to believe that a Helmer type of system would be the best option, even though I wouldn't be able to 'see' the polishes. Can Helmer's be stacked without risking an avalanche of polishes? What do you think? A Helmer--or half a dozen Helmer's maybe? A support group? Give it up altogether, which after reorganizing this last time, I have to admit the thought crossed my mind more than once.

44 comments:

  1. woah!

    Sounds like you definitely need a Helmer. I think stuff you haven't swatched should be out in the open so you can tell what you need to get done, but everything else in a Helmer.

    Just an idea though.

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  2. hahaha I can offer no help except say "get the helmer" but I can offer an "omg I wish I was you" I have the serious jealousies right now

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  3. it looks like nail polish heaven to me ^^ (my 300+ stash looks really small compared to yours)

    i like your current system- you can see almost every polish. And I have to agree with you, there should be a nail polish anonymous or somehting like that :P

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  4. 1. I want your stash.

    2. You need Helmers. I'm off to buy my second soon! :D I'm really excited. It's going to hold the Konading equipment and my frankens, and essentially all the things that didn't fit in the first one! :(

    3. You don't need a support group! You have us!!! =D

    4. Get someone to help you move things into the Helmer and have them read off polishes as they go. Catalogue them into Excel and then, you'll have a very painful count! (That's what I did with mine, so I update the Excel file as I acquire new polishes!) It's really useful to have the full list in case of swapping or just to know what you have so you don't accidentally buy duplicates...I've done that more times than I can count!

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  5. I appreciate this post because I am in the same boat. I think I need help!! We both need truck loads of helmers. lol!!

    nailsbeautiqued.blogspot.com

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  6. *just died and went to polish-heaven*

    waaauw I want all of that! :D I would say try building a walk-in-polish closet? :D

    And A helmer can hold about 500 polishes so if you have around 1000 two helmers could do the trick? :D

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  7. Holy wow! I am in awe at the moment. I'm just curious, with so many choices, how do you decide which colors to wear? I'd never be able to decide, haha.

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  8. I don't really have any suggestions. I just want to stare at it in awe and appreciation! I'd love a trolley dash in there ;)

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  9. In France (but I think you can find this everywhere) we have a kind of clear helmer made of plastic that way you'll be able to "see".
    Sure I think we ALL need to enter the nail anonymous

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  10. *POLISH-GASM* Oh, that's nice =D

    I just got my 3rd Helmer, so that's the route I'd endorse. It would be nice to be able to see all my polish, but I usually have enough random colors out on my desk - just worn, waiting to post, going to wear soon - that it fills that "need" to see my pretties. Honestly, even though I can't see the bottles, I'm usually able to open a drawer & go right to the polish I'm looking for if my Mom requests a specific color ... and they take up so much less room than just about any other solution.

    The perfect storage would really be something that's across between those clear wall displays you see at nail shops, combined with one of those things they use to display posters in stores? Where it's like they're all hinged along the side? But I don't think they sell that LOL.

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  11. So jealous o.0 I want your collection :~)

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  12. Omg, just leave it as is! I like my polishes to be seen, not hidden in a helmer.

    This is awesome.

    -vanaily
    http://milanandvanaily.blogspot.com/

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  13. I'm guessing the best polish solution is the one that fits your needs. As Milan and Vanaily said: she wants to SEE hers so these shelves are perfect. A true collector would want their "collection" out in the open...but man, the dusting required! LOL
    If you don't need to see 'em but want to keep them organized, than the Helmer may be the way to go.
    As for me, I'd swatch for duplicate colors, choose my favorite formula (or two) and giveaway or donate the rest. But then, I have very limited space and also, I'm not one to want a lot of stuff cluttering up my life.
    While I can appreciate your stash, (and drool over it even,) I would clear out the dupes and keep the current system because I too, want to see them. :)
    Of course, my collection is equal to one of your shelves. Though just a few weeks ago it was more like 3 shelves full!

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  14. Mary- You will require more than just one Helmer.

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  15. That looks very much like my polish closet. I have to have my pretties out so I can see them.
    You don't need a helmer you just need more shelves which you can get at Home depot...yes I am in the process of the same. lol
    Mary we are your support group....the crazy nail polish addicts not so anonymous.

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  16. I love the way you storage your polish. I'd love to be able to do that someday but right now I'm stuck with my "helmers". I wanted black ones to storage my polish so I haven't bought mine from Ikea but they work really well, even though when searching for a specific color, you always have to go through a lot of bottles before you find the right one. That's why I think the system you have right no is really nice, you'd just need a couple more shelves.
    I think my collection is somewhere between 300-400 bottles (not really sure anymore) and I probably could just fit them all in one helmer so I think you'd need at least three of them if you'd want to keep the polishes organised too.

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  17. Omg. you have so many ! I guess you could own a store ;)
    It puts my collection to shame. Haha.

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  18. I just bought a helmer from ikea, but I need to put it together :P Go for it!

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  19. You should take all the polishes that you can force yourself to part with and have a sale. Either somewhere public or online. And then donate some or all of the proceeds to a charity, maybe a shep rescue charity! If you changed your polish once a day it would take you 1,979,079 years to use them all! LMAO

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  20. I am about 100 short of hitting 2000 polishes and at this rate, I cannot afford to have a storage system that displays all my pretties, unfortunately. I eventually caved in and ordered 2 Helmers for myself, though I'm pretty sure they won't fit all of my stuff.

    I wish I had lots of room like you! Awesome stash btw!

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  21. OMG Mary, can I come over??? haha :) my fiance owns a condo up in Michigan.. it could be a little weekend polish trip :) lol. I LOVE seeing all of your polishes. I have the same problem - I'd love to get a helmer (or a few) but I LOVE being able to see my polishes. I use these snazzy little containers from Target that hold them really nicely (perfect height) and allow me to still see all my polishes (which I love). I can't find them online but they have these nice locking lids (the locks are green and really easy to open and close). I love your current shelving though.. if you had like tracks of something to keep them all in neat lines that would probably save you lots of time.

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  22. I have an alex for my stash, it suits my needs the most. It has about 6 drawers, but they are wide so it could probably fit up to a thousand completely full, you can see it at my blog alabasterlacquer.blogspot.com. You can get it at ikea too, but it is pricey.

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  23. Oh Mary - I so feel your pain!! I like to see my pretties too. I'm fighting the need for a helmer - but I do have a spare closet that I can put them into and just hang out!! Irony of all irony's one of your google adds is the easy closet.com!!! BWHAAAAAA!! I say congrats and keep polishing, and shuffling and buying and - RIIIIING - oh, excuse me - that's Dr. Drew returning my phone call!!

    www.levernischocolat.blogspot.com

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  24. Has anyone ever calculated the average number of manis from the average size bottle of polish and then extrapolated how long it would take to actually use all the nail polish they had?

    I think I would be able to stop maybe perhaps if BB didn't keep making such gorgeous greens.

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  25. They are all incredible. How fun to just look over all the different bottles and colors. Do you think a Helmer will give you the same satisfaction as having them all lined out to view?

    I love Lady C's idea about indexing them in an Excel file. I'm finding I am purchasing the same ones too. They go into the giveaway stash.

    Someday I'll have to post on my blog a picture of the 2 bookshelves I have of just workout/fitness DVD's. Your collection of polishes reminds of this.

    Good luck and keep us posted on what you decide to do.

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  26. I'm up to 4 Helmers now and it's a bit out of hand. I have the bottom 2 on the wheels and stacked 2 on top of them. I used the grippy cabinet liner inside each drawer and between the Helmer stacks to help keep everything from sliding.

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  27. I don't own any Helmer's but I probably need them. I have 2 of those 6 drawer plastic holders. I bought them at Target. They're on wheels but unless you have tile floors there's no way they'd roll. One is listing so if I moved it I think the wheels would collapse. My older one is heavier plastic and the drawers open easily. The newer the drawers are hard to maneuver. I also have about 6 containers that have snap lock tops. I like them and wish I had room for bookcases that I can put those in. I love the way you have your polishes but it would get to much to dust. I also wonder how much trouble it is to get something out in a back row. There are those plastic shelves available on TransDesign that they use in salons. I just don't have all the wall space. I'd also love to see all my polishes but it's impossible. Why doesn't someone who collects polish come up with a design and get it manufactured? I know other hobbyist have come up with designs for storage for their parts, etc. I know if you find a good solution you'll have detailed pictures of it. Good luck sweetie.

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  28. I've held my 300+ stash in a two stacked plastic container meant for crafts that I bought from Target.
    It's was this

    http://www.amazon.com/Craft-Storage-Box-Removable-Dividers/dp/B001H2ZP82/ref=sr_1_38?ie=UTF8&s=home-garden&qid=1274144667&sr=1-38

    but mine is rectangle. I ran out of space in that. And now my Target only sells the smaller craft boxes. So I've since just bought the simple small plastic show box containers to make do for the time being. Once I move I'm getting a Helmer. I don't feel the need to have them out to see because I've numbered them, placed them on a spreadsheet, and also made color wheels. http://www.flickr.com/photos/allisonlich/sets/72157623871740863/

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  29. OMGGGG, that's enough polishes to last several lifetimes! I think it looks good as it is...I'm so jealous of your awesome collection!

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  30. I have the perfect solution..

    You can send me some! Haha.. Kidding.. But seriously, I would take some (:

    In all seriousness though, I am picking my jaw off of the floor right now!!

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  31. That is beautiful...just...beautiful...I don't own a Helmer, so I can't comment on that, but I have a bed with enderbed drawers in which I have probably well over 500 polishes under at the moment...

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  32. OMG!! Can't imagine my bf letting me have all of those. Well, he'd let me but I won't hear the end of it. LOL.

    *jealous*

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  33. Mary.... I... am.. SO... jealous....

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  34. 2 Helmers and a Melmer are what I have, and I'm busting out of them.
    Worse, I'm looking at several OPI Switzerland and the China Glaze Vintage Vixen set!
    AND a bunch of polishes on Ebay!
    I am obviously no help. I sometimes wish I could see mine like you've got yours set up, but I've not got the space.
    Look at it like a collection.
    :D

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  35. wow = These photos made my jaw drop!

    Is this your 'polish room' or part of a walk in? Either way I would ( and I will in my home one day ) invest or build beautiful glass front cabinets with shallow shelves. I would have a band of helmer's or melmer's drawers then have shallow shelves with glass doors and some open shelving as well.


    So basically a wall with a bank of helmers to store alot of polish, then on top of the helmers - shallow shelves, some with glass front doors and some with open shelving.

    I'm pretty sure a helmer can store at least 45 bottles plus per drawer ( times 6 drawers = 300-ish bottles )


    I am sooooo jealous you have the space for all these to be displayed so lovely.

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  36. put them all on evilbay and give the profits to a good cause :)

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  37. OMG! This is awesome! maybe you should get a new house?! LOL!

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  38. OMG! That's like a walk in closet FULL of nail polish! Amazing! I'm super jealous!

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  39. Lovely display!

    You really need a couple of Helmers! OK, so you can't see all the polish at once, but that might actually work to your advantage.
    If you don't see it, you can always convince yourself that the polish you presently wants is not a dupe, right! At least that is what I do and it's working. I've got 6 Helmers to prove it.. ;-)

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  40. Wooooooooooaaaaaah I'm more than jealous!!!
    I want a closet like yours full of nail polish. What an amazing collection you have, congratulations.
    Besides, you're so well organized... mmm I could be looking at your collection for hours ;-)

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  41. I also think you need a Helmer :-) I just gone mine recently. Could you please tell me the names of those 4 Essies you can see in yoru shelf of untrieds? They look really nice and I'd like to look swatches of them in the internet. Thanks.

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