The other week I went to the Illamasqua flagship store on Beak Street in Soho and picked up a couple of the new nail varnishes that had caught my eye online. I'm loving purple varnishes at the moment, so both the varnishes I picked up were in this shade.
The first one is Prosperity, from their new limited edition Rubber Brights collection. The varnishes in this collection all have a matt, rubber-like finish, and come in a range of bold colours, including this purple.
I have to say, when I first applied this I wasn't massively enamoured with it. I liked the matt finish but it didn't really have as much of a rubber-like texture as I had expected. Due to the fact that I hurriedly applied it quite late on a school night, I instantly noticed how important it is to apply a polish like this with care - which I definitely hadn't. A shiny finish conceals a multitude of sins, but this matt finish is quite unforgiving, so you need to apply it as expertly as you can! Next time I'll definitely be more careful. I think I'll also apply 3 coats rather than 2 as suggested on the box, as I'd like it to be that little bit more opaque. I started to enjoy Prosperity more the longer I wore it though, so I think this one is a going to grow on me.
Speckle on the other hand was pretty much love at first sight! Part of Illamsqua's new I'mperfection collection, it is inspired by the colour and speckles of a bird's egg. It definitely lives up to the brief, even if this pastel purple hue reminds me of mini eggs a little bit more than real birds' eggs.
I love the way that the varnish almost seems to become three-dimensional as you build up the layers: you can faintly see speckles in the bottom layers in stark contrast to the ones right on top. It's a very cool effect - but as you can see it's nothing overly crazy, unlike some nail effects that are doing the rounds at the moment, so it's very wearable. I like it a lot! The picture below is three layers of application.
Lastly, I think I'll write a few words about this new I'mperfection collection. The concept behind it is that the products celebrate the imperfections that make us all unique. Although coming from a make up company you have to take this with a massive pinch of salt, I think I still quite like the sentiment behind it. And really, there are two ways you can use make up: to make yourself blend in, to 'normalise' yourself in the way that society expects - or you can use it to enhance and celebrate your individuality. And generally I think Illamasqua caters to the latter of those two categories really well.