YSL – La Laque Couture ‘#33 Première Neige’ Top Coat

 

Something about snow globes just seems like pure magic to me … finding the same effect in a bottle of nail lacquer, namely the limited edition ‘Première Neige’ (which means “first snowfall” in french) Top Coat from the YSL Northern Lights Holiday 2012 Collection, literally stopped me in my tracks. There’s an interesting story here; well, maybe not that interesting, but definitely a story …

During the past week, I had been lurking near my closest YSL counter and inquiring about when the Holiday 2012 collection would be available, but got vague replies at best. Then, a few days ago, I went to pick up an item from the CHANEL counter and casually inquired the SA about the YSL collection; specifically, I wanted the ‘Première Neige’ Top Coat. She then went to check for me (as the YSL counter was unattended) and returned with the LAST BOTTLE. Even though the display wasn’t up yet. Even though I had inquired just the night before and was met with blank stares. The moral of the story? Become friendly with an SA who has a good grasp of cosmetics and customer service — it pays.


YSL Première Neige – unshaken


YSL Première Neige – unshaken


YSL Première Neige – unshaken


YSL Première Neige – unshaken (prismatic flakes massed on the bottom)


YSL #33 Première Neige Top Coat – (CAD $27.00 10 ml/0.34 fl. oz) is pure fantasy. A clear easy flowing base bearing ultra-fine multi-chromatic and prismatic glitter that flashes primarily blue and violet, although I also catch pink & green hints as well. The contents need to be well shaken – no rolled – prior to application, as the glitter does settle onto the bottom of the bottle … exactly like that of a snow globe. Once shaken, the shimmery particles seem to dance, suspended in the base, and it actually becomes a challenge to begin application, as you could get lost for hours just staring at it! The iridescent effect is achieved in a sophisticated manner, and never overpowers your base shade – it simply enhances it.

The formula on ‘Première Neige’ flows with excellent density and provided the contents have been well-combined, the coverage is perfect. One coat offers up amazing sparkle (over a base colour), but two brings things to a spectacular level. With a relatively quick dry time, the finish is not only smooth to the touch, but incredibly glossy, making the addition of any other top coat completely superfluous.

  • over a dark shade such as black, the colour flashes range from aqua, turquoise, royal blue, ultra marine, cobalt, and purple
  • over a bright hue such as the blue shade used here, the colour flashes range from turquoise, blue, violet, and pink

The elegant rectangular bottle comes with a removal outer cap, revealing a ridged inner cap that is quite easy to grip. The brush is the traditional fan shape, with an excellent flexibility and spread to the bristles.

For the following swatches, I applied ‘Première Neige’ to all nails over the glossy black from YSL’s ‘Terriblement Noir Duo’, a black with a gel-like consistency, non-staining, and with an intense vinyl-glassy finish. I was curious to see the effect on a bright shade, and so my thumb is sporting YSL’s ‘Bleu Majorelle’.

I strongly encourage you to click to enlarge the swatch photos, so you can really grasp ‘Première Neige’s’ full effect.


YSL Première Neige in natural light

YSL Première Neige


YSL Première Neige


YSL Première Neige – removable outer cap


YSL Première Neige


YSL Première Neige – logo embossed on inner cap


YSL Première Neige & the glossy black from the YSL Terriblement Noir Duo


YSL Première Neige (over  YSL Bleu Majorelle on thumb)


YSL Première Neige


YSL Première Neige


YSL Première Neige


YSL Première Neige – angled to show purple leanings

 

Final thoughts: Effects top coats are nothing new in the world of nail lacquer, although definitely not prevalent with department store and high-end brands, which is part of what makes ‘Première Neige’ so unique. The fact that the contents need to be shaken in order to be “activated” is a different touch as well, along with the fact that this formula not only flows like a regular varnish (as opposed to the usually thicker, suspension-like base of other similar top coats), but provides a superior glassy finish when dry. The only problem I see, is that it’s not only limited edition, but already as elusive to find as spotting a unicorn; therefore, if you do chance upon this about-to-become-fabled beauty – no, not the unicorn – act fast, or live with everlasting regret … (total drama!)


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