Nails of the Day: Chanel Rouge Noir 18

August 11, 2010
I know vampy is not quite in season yet, but after having to be neutral (for fingers) for the past ten days or so with non-stop interviews, I was starting to crave something dramatic. Research, preparation, anticipation, having to think quickly on my feet and respond to endless situational, behavioral and technical questions have all left me exhausted. I feel lucky to even get interviews in this economy, even luckier to make it past the first few rounds at more than one company, however a mani/pedi was just what I needed to wash away my anxiety from the past few weeks.

Today I chose Chanel’s Rouge Noir 18 for my manicure, a deep dark chocolate cherry kind of shade. If you apply coat, you can definitely see the burgundy/cherry red. If you add more coats, you get a darker finish that gets closer to dark black-red-brown. Here it is with 2 coats.

The bad news with Rouge Noir 18 is that it is no longer available in the US. The good news is that Rouge Noir is coming back this holiday in one of the Chanel Holiday sets (see KarlaSugar for details on the set). I’m not entirely sure about the history and background of Rouge Noir 18. The famous Vamp Le Vernis also has the number 18 on it (see my vampy shades compared here). They are definitely different even though they share the same number. I have a couple variations of Vamp as well.

I don’t know if there is a dupe for this shade. If you click on the link above to my vampy nail polish post, you will see that Diabolic and Forbidden from Chanel are different from Rouge Noir. As this manicure wears off, I will do a little experimentation with some other RBL, OPI and Rococo shades I have to see if I can find a dupe. At this time I cannot do an extensive search for a dupe outside of what I already own – things are bit hectic with my schedule.

I’m pleased with the results of my manicure, however, in hindsight, I think this was better in theory. It’s definitely still too early in the year for this kind of color on the nails. Toes are ok, but fingers just stand out too much.

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  • amy

    A great color that feeds my soul. It's a good choice to steel you after grueling days of interviews. I'm wishing you the best and the np looks great. As an aside, I understand that this was the Euro version of the original 1994 Vamp. Back then, Vamp was all over Vogue–everyone, everyone was wearing it (Madonna, Sarah Bernhardt, when they were both the 'it' celebs). It was Chanel's first really 'iconic' color that was later echoed by Black Satin, Jade, etc. Chanel reformulated Vamp in the US over the years, but it was never the same as the original one. Now Rouge Noir is the closest thing Chanel makes to the original one. OPI's Lincoln Park After Dark is said to be close to this too.

  • So shiny! Can't wait for autumn but I will be sad to say goodbye to my pastels! x

  • there's a dupe in Europe by the brand 'Catrice'.

  • Amy – I knew you would have the info on this! No wonder I have different variations of Vamp as well. I have one that is a burgandy shimmer, another that is more purple. I love both, but it's interesting to hear about the changes they made.

    Nic – I can't wait for fall too, but I'm enjoying summer.

    Etoileblog – TY for the rec! I'm sure my European readers will appreciate your suggestion.

  • Wow! That is gorgeous! Why don't I have this! Must buy!

    I'm looking forward to the Rouge Fatal in October..

    Also, best of luck to you on the job hunt (not that you need it) SERIOUSLY! who wouldn't hire you? : )

  • perfect color for Fall! Love it! And gorgeous ring btw! xoox

  • mm. pretty! I've never tried chanel polishes but that looks really nice. unrelated, but I love your rings!


  • Very pretty! ^_^

  • Congratulations on the interviews! I totally agree with you about a mani/pedi though – usually my second pick (after doing a face mask) for a little R&R. =) Love the color you chose too – I totally can't wait to get into vampy shades for fall. πŸ˜€

  • yes, I most definitely need this when it's re-released this Holiday!
    Thanks for the great heads-up πŸ™‚

  • Lori – I think it was a Nordstrom Anniversary exclusive 2 years ago? Then released at all counters shortly after? I'm so excited for Rouge Fatal. I hope it comes out sooner than October. Thanks for the wishes πŸ™‚ The waiting is killing me too.

    Andee Layne – TY! I love my ring too πŸ™‚ Waited 7 years for it, but definitely worth the wait.

    Roxy – Gasp, you've never tried Chanel? Get yourself to a counter ASAP! Worth the splurge IMHO. Vamp is also a great color.

    BeautyOnTheWay – TY!

    Catherine – Oooh, face mask. That's a good idea too. Nothing like slathering on the goop πŸ™‚ Hope you found a new place!

    Andi – You're welcome! Thanks to Karlasugar too πŸ™‚

  • I think your other commenters already answered this, but yes, Rouge Noir and Vamp were originally the same red/black color, with different names for different markets. Eventually Vamp turned a bit lighter and shimmer was added. There was also a "Metallic Vamp" and a "Very Vamp". A few years ago, RN was part of a holiday set with Tulipe Noir and Allegoria. Glad to see it's back for Fall!

  • I love Rouge Noir and it has been my go to pedi colour for years.