Essie Is the Latest Beauty Brand to Launch Vending Machines

Fewer calories than that mid-afternoon bag of M&M's! Mmmm... M&M's...
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Tyler McCall
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Fewer calories than that mid-afternoon bag of M&M's! Mmmm... M&M's...
Essie nail polishes at an event in 2014. Photo: Bryan Bedder/Getty Images

Essie nail polishes at an event in 2014. Photo: Bryan Bedder/Getty Images

Within the past year, vending machines have become the hot trend for beauty companies: Sephora, 3FLOZ and Benefit have all launched some version of one in airports across the country. 

This month, Essie is launching a vending machine of its own, called the Essie Color Boutique. They'll debut in major airports and malls across the country, starting with the JetBlue terminal in New York's JFK airport and Oakland International Airport. 

The machines will hold 48 shades — 42 from the main collection and six from the rotating seasonal collections. It's a brilliant move to put them in airports: Those are places where you often end up with downtime, and if you're as neurotic as me and you leave three hours before your flight, A LOT of downtime. Plus, thanks to that three ounces or less in a quart-sized bag rule, nail polish tends to get left behind.

Malls seem a bit more questionable. Companies like Benefit and L'Oreal have seen success with their respective vending machines precisely because they're placed in locations without competition, like airports or subways. When you're sharing floor space with companies like Sephora or department stores, and your product can be found just as easily in drugstores, these machines feel more novel than necessary.