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Naturally positioned nail care brand Zoya is launching a 2,000-piece limited-edition nail polish collection based on Emily Liebert’s new novel, “You Knew Me When.”
Rolling out in September, the Zoya You Knew Me When Collection includes three shades created exclusively for the book’s launch, which will be sold online at zoya.com for $24.99.
“Several months ago, [Liebert] reached out to us and told us about this book she was writing,” said Leo Reyzis, Zoya’s vice president of marketing. “[The plot] has a nice connection to nail polish and to the company, the brand and its philosophy.”
For Liebert, a nail-color collaboration is also a marketing tool. “Unfortunately, these days you cannot just write a book and release it into the world and hope everyone likes it. You need to get publicity for it,” she said. “I thought that a really fun way of getting publicity would be to work with a cosmetics company.…I approached a number of companies but Zoya was my first choice. I loved their product and we just really clicked.”
The cream colors are named after the three main female characters, Katherine Hill, Laney Marten and Luella Hancock — a deep red, dark green and burgundy, all reflecting each of the character’s personality, respectively.
“I said let’s do a polish and name it You Knew Me When and they said let’s do a trio and name them after the three female characters, so it was really a collaboration,” said Liebert, who has also written the nonfiction book “Facebook Fairytales.”
“Emily had some ideas for the types of colors that the characters would wear,” added Rebecca Isa, Zoya’s color developer, who worked on the project. “She sent me character descriptions, and we sent her colors for her to choose from.” Isa added that the shades were designed to work for the fall season as well.
Like all other Zoya polishes, they will be camphor, DBP, formaldehyde and toluene free, as well as vegan-friendly.
For Liebert, the book and the nail polish collection are windows to female personalities and relationships. “I’ve always been really interested in female friendship and that bond, what can sever it and then what can bring people back together,” said Liebert. “I always believe ‘write what you know about’.…Katherine, who I think of as the main character, has a lot of me in her. The good and the bad. Laney is based on a friend actually. I did have a friendship that didn’t end up working out. We reconnected years later, but it was never the same. Luella is based on my grandmother. She’s very glamorous, but also private and stoic.”
The author said her favorite shade from Zoya’s collection is Luella Hancock, described as a deep plum. “This fall, I will be sporting all of [the colors], but the purple Luella color is the one I would most gravitate towards,” she said. “Purple is my favorite color.”
Luella is also Liebert’s preferred character in the book. “She’s mysterious and there’s always more to her. For my third novel, I’m considering going back in time and writing her story.”
Though Liebert is already thinking about her third novel, she is currently working on her second, due in September 2014 as part of a two-book contract with Penguin Group Inc. “I always wanted to write fiction. That was my first love,” she said.
Liebert, a born and raised New Yorker, also serves as “luxury lifestyle expert” for GalTime.com, a new media magazine for women.
The paperback book, which will retail for $15, will be available starting in September at Barnes & Noble bookstores nationwide and at Amazon.com. Additionally, Liebert has been chosen to participate in Target’s Emerging Authors program, so her book will be available at Target stores nationwide from Sept. 1 until Oct. 13.
The author also revealed that the novel will be promoted through two additional partnerships, one with fashion designer Alessandra Meskita and one with the jewelry brand Dodo. On the fashion side, Meskita is designing three dresses — the Katherine, Laney and Luella dresses — which match Zoya’s nail polish shades and will go on sale in the fall. Liebert also chose three of Dodo’s charms for her to wear on a custom gemstones and diamonds bracelet at her book launch events. She chose the “I love my freedom” butterfly charm to represent Katherine, the “Handle with care” starfish for Laney and the “You work miracles” angelfish for Luella.
The Zoya You Knew Me When Collection will be promoted mainly through book signing events and social media. According to Reyzis, the trio will be gift-packaged with autographed copies of the novel and Zoya will offer complementary nail polish changes with the three shades at book signing locations in the fall. Reyzis added that distribution talks are under way with several beauty boutiques in New York.