A Closer Look at Chanel Black Pearl #513 Le Vernis

December 18, 2010

A few readers wanted to know how Chanel Black Pearl 513 compared to other shades such as Chanel Steel and NARS Full Metal Jacket. Due to differences on computer screens it may be hard to tell. I hope these close ups will give you a better idea of what this looks like. To me, Chanel Black Pearl is a dark greyed-teal shimmer. It has a pearly finish with a bit of silver veining which makes the color look different depending on what angle and lighting you see this in. I had my nails done today with this color and keep getting distracted by the pretty color. It’s a darker dramatic color, but the soft pearl gives it a soft glow that prevents it from being too sharp.

Balenciaga fans, if you’re familiar with the Anthracite colors you know how it’s evolved over the years with each new seasonal release. The first generation of Anthra was a murky dark greenish teal. (You can see all the variations from Anthra fans at The Purse Forum: Balenciaga Clubhouse.) I compared it to Lancome Pop Petrol back in February (see here). You can see Chanel Black Pearl is better matched to the 2007 Anthra Balenciaga. The Lancome is sharper, deeper and more contrasted in color.

Here is Chanel Black Pearl swatched next to my Balenciaga First – Anthracite from 2007

Next to my Ocean Le Creuset (if you think this is nuts, you’re not the only one, but I have limited teal in my house).

Close up from the side, looks a bit more blue-ish rather than greenish:

I already did some comparisons yesterday but here are more. I hope this helps you! On my screen, Chanel Black Pearl has that greenish sheen that NARS Full Metal Jacket and Chanel Steel lack.

NARS Full Metal Jacket, Chanel Steel, Chanel Black Pearl, Laura Mercier Caviar Dreams, Lancome Pop Petrol, OPI Cuckoo For This Color shown below

*UPDATE* I hope this doesn’t confuse you even more, but people keep asking for more comparisons! I dug up a review from the past that has Deborah Lippman’s Don’t Tell Mama, China Glaze Gussied Up Green and Hard Candy Envy and Laura Mercier Caviar Dreams. It was from last January (Color Focus: Teal Eyes & Nails Inspired by . . .) – I decided to do one last set of comparisons for you. I can’t believe how many greens I have. I didn’t think green was really my color.

Comparison Set #2 with China Glaze, Hard Candy & Deborah Lippmann

Bottom line: GET THE CHANEL BLACK PEARL. It’s unique. It’s gorgeous. It’s different enough to justify owning. There is no comparison.

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  • Debra December 18, 2010 at 2:14 am

    I love teal, in all hues and blends. I don't often match nail polish to eye shadow but I can see using NARS Rajastan when wearing this color which I ordered from Chanel (with the Pearl Drop) today.

    Thank you for the post and excellent descriptions. I especially love the LeCreuset comparison; that color is one of my favorites.


  • Pearls&Politics December 18, 2010 at 2:18 am

    Ah what a great color! I have a color from China Glaze and it it VERY similiar to this color I believe– love dupes! πŸ™‚

  • Cosmetics Aficionado December 18, 2010 at 2:30 am

    LOVE your Balenciaga!!

  • Eileen December 18, 2010 at 3:20 am

    There's only one thing in these pics that is more beautiful than Black Pearl and that's your Balenciaga. You'll have to show us one of your looks using that beautiful handbag.

  • Rads December 18, 2010 at 5:45 am

    Love the colour…love the bag πŸ™‚

  • Sofia December 18, 2010 at 5:52 am

    I really want this but I am scared that it's too similar to Deborah Lippmann's "Don't Tell Mama". Thank you so much for the comparisons! I will have to make a guess based on your swatches =)

  • reene December 18, 2010 at 6:00 am

    Your Balenciaga is a gorgeous color. And you gave rekindled my love for Laura Mercier's Caviar Dreams. I think I'll dig it back out some time. πŸ™‚

  • Sabrina December 18, 2010 at 6:14 am

    Thanks girls for the comments!

    Sofia – I forgot to mention, I swatched Lippmann's Don't Tell Mama here:


    and here:


    Chanel Black Pearl is still different enough IMHO. The Don't Tell Mama goes on practically black on me πŸ™

  • Charlestongirl December 18, 2010 at 9:56 am

    Another Le Creuset fan! πŸ™‚

    I think even I may need this one.

  • The Girlie Blog December 18, 2010 at 11:24 am

    It looks like a nice, grungy color.

  • Helena from BrooklynBlonde December 18, 2010 at 3:09 pm

    wow, I'm loving that color!

  • lexi920 December 18, 2010 at 4:54 pm

    You're the only person I know that would compare a Chanel polish to a Le Creuset dutch oven – pure genius. I went to my Nordstrom counter and put my name on their wait list for Black Pearl – it's supposed to arrive either today or by Tuesday. I am eagerly awaiting its arrival! Thanks for getting me excited and getting me to buy Chanel polish again. That is something I didn't think I was going to start up again.

    I also can't wait to play with the other items.

    Now I also want your Balenciaga, another dutch oven and a strand of Tahitian black pearls!

  • Beauty Reductionista December 18, 2010 at 7:16 pm

    I was going to bypass this but you just may have convinced me to change my mind!

  • Tina December 18, 2010 at 8:42 pm

    The more I see this on your blog, the more it's growing on me… great and unique mix of silver, black and teal!!! I may have to get a bottle! πŸ™‚ x

  • Gail December 18, 2010 at 11:40 pm

    Gorgeous! I'm so glad I ordered this. Thanks so much for the great swatches, and especially all the comparisons. Can't wait to see your comparisons for the quint and quad (Maybe Murano and Winter Nights?).

  • Z December 19, 2010 at 1:30 am

    I am completely in love with this color! Thanks for all the comparisons. It's just not like any of them.

  • Daly Beauty December 31, 2010 at 3:19 pm


    The Black Pearl…next to your Balenciaga…


  • Style Odyssey January 5, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    Yours is by far the best review of this color. Well done!

    I bought Black Pearl the other day; I knew I'd regret it later if I didn't. Plus I happen to love grey nail colors.

    I was almost ambivalent once I actually painted my nails and then…well, then I wore an all-black outfit. (As I do. Frequently.) And *wow* It really looked incredible! Works just as well when wearing dark grey, and I'm sure many other colors. I just happen to prefer it with "like" colors, ie black and greys.

    In a nutshell: Black Pearl is sublime. Get it before it's gone.

  • ETenebris April 16, 2011 at 2:55 am

    I love this! A fellow tPF member AND you have my Le Creuset!