mom who works

the joys and challenges of being a working mom trying to find "balance"

The Vamp Files – Chanel Le Vernis Rouge Noir 18, Malice 637, Vendetta 483 January 24, 2013

Filed under: beauty — Deborah @ 2:23 pm
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Chanel Le Vernis Malice 637

Chanel Le Vernis Malice 637

I’ve never met a vampy nail color I didn’t like.

I love the dark seductiveness of a nail that has the appearance of dried blood. Not as goth as black, not as classically pretty as red, but a mix in-between.

Opinions vary over whether colors this dark are appropriate to wear at the office. I say “know your office,” and be mindful of your position – where you are and where you want to go. They’re dangerous, these vampy colors. They say “I’m a woman who knows what I want and I will do what I need to do to get it.”

Chanel was the originator of the dark nail craze, with the introduction of Chanel Le Vernis Vamp 18 nail color back in 1994, most notably on Uma Thurman’s short nails in the cult classic film “Pulp Fiction.”

For your consideration are 3 of my more recent Chanel vampy acquisitions. Chanel Le Vernis Malice 637 was Chanel’s holiday polish in 2012. A beautiful deep, dark, blackish-red with an actual *visible* red shimmer, the formula on this is spot on. This photo, in fact, is ONE coat of Malice, applied in a huge rush. I can only imagine that 2 coats looks downright amazing.

Chanel Le Vernis Vendetta 483 is a deep purple creme, with the classic hidden silver Chanel shimmer. It flashes nearly black in certain lights, dark purple in others, and dusty grey in still others.

Finally, the classic, Chanel Le Vernis Rouge Noir 18, which is the non-US version of Vamp 18, and was only recently made available to US customers via the web site. A deep, dark, black-red crelly (jellyish-creme), Rouge Noir has a perfect formula, and the color has the depth and squishyness I look for in a jelly or crelly formulation.

Malice and Rouge Noir are limited edition colors, currently available on for US $27 each. Vendetta is part of the permanent collection, also available on for US $27.

Chanel Le Vernis Vendetta 483

Chanel Le Vernis Vendetta 483

Chanel Le Vernis Rouge Noir 18

Chanel Le Vernis Rouge Noir 18


The one that started it all – Chanel Le Vernis Paradoxal 509 nail polish January 21, 2013

Filed under: beauty — Deborah @ 12:31 pm
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Chanel Le Vernis Paradoxal 509I can trace my obsession with Chanel nail polish to this one color, Chanel Le Vernis Paradoxal 509, introduced as part of the Les Contrasts de Chanel collection in fall 2010.

It was the only nail color in the collection, but boy what a color. I believe the hipster term is “grigolet” which a fancy French way of saying greyish purple. Or purplish grey. You get the picture.

As I’ve documented here previously, my prior nail life, before Chanel and before quick dry top coat, consisted of a few shades of pale pink neutrals and clear reds. Boom, end of story.

Paradoxal 509 opened my eyes to colors that are chic, but still wearable to the office. It’s my “gateway” Chanel.

In typical Chanel Le Vernis fashion, this is a creme with a “hidden” shimmer, that adds shine, depth and interest to what could easily become a muddy, dull color. This is a chameleon color, too. Not quite a duochrome like Peridot, but more of a shape shifter. Sometimes, as in this photo in the sun, it looks more purple than grey. In indoor lighting, it looks more grey.

Application was perfect. Flowed on smoothly exactly where I wanted it, which for a dark color in amateur hands, is a godsend. All in all, one of my all-time favorite Chanels.

Paradoxal 509 is available at Chanel counters worldwide and for US $26 on


Smells like team spirit – Chanel Le Vernis Peridot 531 January 11, 2013

Filed under: beauty — Deborah @ 2:42 pm
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Chanel Le Vernis Peridot 531

I’m not a huge sports fan, but living in southeastern Wisconsin, if you don’t at least pretend like you are a huge Packers fan, you’ll soon find that the invitations stop coming and people are avoiding you in the hallways.

Reluctantly, I started to actually LIKE watching Packer games after I made was dragged along to a pilgrimage to Lambeau Field in Green Bay – the historic home of the Packers, Vince Lombardi, and all things green-and-gold. I started getting into the spirit, and actually watching the games each weekend. Helped along of course by the amazing feats of our enigmatic (single!) and hall-of-fame worthy quarterback Aaron Rodgers and, my personal favorite, rookie running back Randall Cobb.

Anyhoo, this is just my usual rambling way of explaining my Peridot manicure today, put on hastily this morning to make up for the fact that I do not actually own any Packer gear, and the office, in a fit of NFL playoff frenzy, called an impromptu “wear your green and gold to support the Packers in the playoffs” day today. Lacking any official Packer-wear I thought, “I know, I’ll throw on Peridot for my mani – go Pack go!” You know, Chanel Le Vernis Peridot 531 is a green-gold duochrome. Get it? Hello?

Okay, well, there have been countless pages of ink and millions of bytes written about this amazing polish from Chanel, introduced as part of the Illusions d’Ombres collection in fall 2011. Yes, it was “the” polish of the year that year. So I won’t bother you with retreading all that news, I’ll just say that, well, I’ll just say good luck to my buddies Randall and Aaron in the playoff game tomorrow night. Go Pack go!

Chanel Le Vernis Peridot 531 is still available for US $27 at, but it is limited edition, so get it now while supplies last.