YSL – La Lacque Couture #18 Bleu Majorelle

YSL Bleu Majorelle opener


When YSL Beauté re-vamped their nail lacquer line with the now larger and permanent colour line up, one of the shades that literally stood head & shoulders above them all, was the vibrant #18 Bleu Majorelle; the problem lay in that it was constantly sold out at every counter I visited, else I would have snagged this beauty long ago. Never mind … it’s mine now!

There’s an interesting connection/history behind this particular blue shade, and the house of YSL; M. Saint Laurent who often visited Marrakech, Morocco for design inspiration, fell in love with a botanical garden there created by French artist Jacques Majorelle. Along with his partner Pierre Pergé, M. Saint Laurent then bought the garden 1980 and not only lovingly restored it all, but added a new design to it with each visit, preserved it as a museum of Islamic art, and eventually had his ashes scattered there when he passed away in 2008.

The original garden was created in 1924 by French artist Jacques Majorelle, who drew inspiration from the blue colour found in local Moroccan tiles, and he used this colour throughout the garden, painting the walls, fountains, and features of the villa in this intensely blue shade, finally trademarking the name “Majorelle Blue”.

Majorelle Gardens

Majorelle Garden – Marrakech, Morocco (source)

YSL Bleu Majorelle

YSL – #18 Bleu Majorelle

YSL Bleu Majorelle 2

YSL – #18 Bleu Majorelle

YSL Bleu Majorelle 3

YSL – #18 Bleu Majorelle – (CAD $27.00 10 ml/0.34 fl.oz) an intensely vivid ultra blue shade, in a STELLAR jelly-esque formula that applies streak-free and in a buttery smooth self-levelling way. Highly colour saturated and perfectly opaque at 2 coats, the finish is insanely brilliant. Bonus: absolutely non-staining upon removal. Coats applied: 2, plus top coat

YSL Bleu Majorelle swatch

YSL – #18 Bleu Majorelle

YSL Bleu Majorelle swatch 2

YSL – #18 Bleu Majorelle

YSL Bleu Majorelle matte swatch

YSL – #18 Bleu Majorelle, matte

YSL Bleu Majorelle matte swatch 2

YSL – #18 Bleu Majorelle, matte

YSL Bleu Majorelle vs Essie Butler Please

While I own several bright blue shades in my personal collection, I was surprised to find that only one was close enough to Bleu Majorelle to warrant a comparison – Essie’s ‘Butler Please’ (reviewed here), and even further stunned at how close the two are colour-wise; with the naked eye, you can just make out a hint of variance between them, but the biggest difference lies in the price tag with the Essie being easily 1/3 the cost of the YSL.

  • index & pinkie fingers: Essie ‘Butler Please’ – 1st coat not as smooth laying, thicker formula, colour almost identical but perhaps a couple of degrees less intense, not as naturally brilliant, non-staining as well
  • middle & ring fingers: YSL #18 Bleu Majorelle

YSL Bleu Majorelle vs Essie Butler Please swatch

YSL – #18 Bleu Majorelle vs Essie ‘Butler Please’

YSL Bleu Majorelle vs Essie Butler Please swatch 2

YSL – #18 Bleu Majorelle vs Essie ‘Butler Please’


Final thoughts: There is everything to love about this varnish, starting from the eye-catching colour, the amazing application, long-lasting & glossy formula, to the fact that it’s completely non-staining … all well worth the rather steep price tag, in my opinion. The fact that ‘#18 Bleu Majorelle’ is part of YSL’s permanent range is also a bonus – no need to run out and stockpile. A truly spectacular blue that manages to look sophisticated, modern, classy & edgy at the same time – also perfect for when you want to make a unique fashion statement.

I picked mine up at Holt Renfrew (Canada).

YSL Bleu Majorelle closer




*Disclosure: Product samples provided by the company/PR for my unbiased consideration

54 Responses to YSL – La Lacque Couture #18 Bleu Majorelle

  1. Beth says:

    Hi Eugenia – I absolutely adore your blog! I’m addicted to your reviews and the gorgeous pictures. I’m wondering…would you comment on the longevity of the YSL vs. Essie in this lovely color? Love, love, love this color but the Essie chips within a day or two no matter what I do. I’m wondering if I should just shell out for the Bleu Majorelle? Thanks again for the great blog.

    • Eugenia says:

      Awwww…thank YOU, Beth, for your kind words – I truly appreciate your support! As to longevity, I don’t usually comment on that because A) polishes very rarely chip on me and B) I swatch so many in a given week, that I don’t physically have the time to wear each brand for too long. There are several things you can do, however, that may possibly help with any chipping issues. Before painting your nails, take a clean cotton pad with some nail polish remover on it, and wipe down the entire nail surface – this way you’re ensuring a clean & totally dry base to work on. Next, if your usual base coat isn’t doing the trick, try switching to a ridge filling base coat – the slightly denser surface may help with polish adhesion better (there’s also ‘Stickey’ from CND you can try). Another trick is after applying your base coat, lightly buff it with a fine-grit nail file to create a rough surface that your polish can stick to, then proceed with your application. Lastly, make sure to apply your top coat not only on the nail surface, but run it along the tips too to seal in all edges. On another note, I’ve personally found that certain nail polish brands work better when all components are the same ie: in this case, use base, polish and top coat all by Essie. Hope some of this helps!

  2. this is gorgeous! my heart skipped a beat

  3. mckennaak says:

    I have this color and I LOVE IT! I just wish it looked as good on my nails as it does on yours!

  4. Eugenia, you find the most stunning complementary pictures for your posts! There’s something about this shade that is so elegant and calming and uplifting at once. I love the blue of this polish but found the formula lacking given the price tag. Still, it’s totally irresistible for anyone who collects YSL polishes!

    • Eugenia says:

      Awww…thank, Liz! I go with what speaks to me! I’m a little confused about what you’re referring to vis a vis the formula; it was actually quite stellar AND non-staining! Doesn’t get better than that, I tell ya! If anything, I would say Essie’s Butler Please had a more finicky formula – maybe you confused the two?

  5. Nailderella says:

    I’ve had my eyes on this polish since a long time but managed to resist and here you come with your beautiful swatches…*sigh*
    By the way, which matte top coat did you use? it looks really beautiful!

  6. Gorgeous! I wonder how it compares to Nails Inc Baker St?

  7. Nancy Dines says:

    I don’t know why but I’m surprised that this polish is 99% dupeable. I love that shade of blue, wondering how it compares to IKB:2012 by rescue beauty lounge.

    And I love your new blog design, Eugenia, it’s fabulous!!

    • Eugenia says:

      Awww….thanks so much, Nancy!

      As to Bleu Majorelle being dupeable, only in the final look; the formula between the 2 is quite different, but I’m just happy I don’t have to choose between them, lol! I was initially going to compare it to IKB:2012 and even had it out to swatch, but they are completely different – in texture & shade (the RBL is darker toned).

  8. Latoya says:

    I love the look of this blue Eugenia, but I’m nervous to try it on my own skintone – I think it might look too garish. I’m happy to see how close it is to the Essie though – if I’m feeling adventurous, I’d rather try it out at a fraction of the price! :)

    • Eugenia says:

      Personally, I think that you could totally carry off this shade of blue – it’s not too insipid nor too neon-y, both classy & funky! Then again, if you don’t want to shell out the clams for the YSL, it’s good to know there’s a less expensive alternative!

  9. I wanted this shade sooo bad, but I got the essie a few weeks ago, so big thank you for comparing them 😉 xo

  10. Hey Big Sis! LOVE the new layout! Much easier on my old eyes haha!
    I have this one and love it! It’s a great shade!

    • Eugenia says:

      Awww….thanks, Lil Sis! My OLDER eyes (lol) needed a break too….plus, I had been planning a changeup for quite some time, so I finally bit the bullet & put it into action. I can so totally see this blue working on you!

  11. Linda says:

    A very beautiful colour and I can see why M. YSL loved it and that garden so much; it does make you feel happy! Was wondering how was the staining with the Essie polish?

    P,S, I like the light background too!

  12. wickednails says:

    Gorgeous swatches! I appreciate the comparison <3

  13. This is such a GORGEOUS blue! p.s. I have nominated you for The Versatile Blogger Award!

    • Eugenia says:

      Glad you liked it! Thank you so much for the nomination; unfortunately and due to the many deadlines I have, I unfortunately don’t have the time left over to respond to awards such as this – but I really appreciate the thought just the same!

  14. Marina says:

    That’s such a gorgeous polish! I must get it despite my inexplicable dislike of YSL.
    Also, thank you Eugenia for the new design of the site. White font against lack background kills my eyes.

    • Eugenia says:

      Glad you like the new look, Marina! YSL polishes have had a major overhaul; from the ones I’ve tried so far, the formula is amazing – plus the gloss is something else! Hope you give them another shot!

  15. Jess says:

    Wow I LOVE this matte! Absolutely stunning colour! You may already know this but The Bay sells YSL lacquers online; I bought my bottle from them! Something to consider if you find it’s sold out in stores!

    • Eugenia says:

      I didn’t think of it at the time, but you’re so right, Jess *palms face* – The Bay’s online shopping is so convenient for us Canadians! As to the matte version, it’s even MORE impressive in person!

  16. Wow, that is just GORGEOUS! I think I might have to pick up the Essie polish, given the price difference! :)

  17. First of all, BLUUUEEEEEE. I love cobalt blue polishes – so classic. And I love the new blog layout, Eugenia!

  18. Monica says:

    After reading the history behind the shade I feel like I should own 10 bottles of this polish Lol. This is my absolute favorite shade of blue and to live in that garden surrounded by this color would be a dream come true! I also had a hard time tracking it down but it’s finally mine. It makes me happy everytime I wear it :) Love how you provide some history behind the product. Great post as usual!

    • Eugenia says:

      Thanks, Monica! I love it when a beauty product comes with a “provenance” – makes it seem that much more special, somehow (or so I tell myself to justify the hefty price tag, lol!) Happy to hear that you’re enjoying this gorgeous shade as well! :)

  19. jojosbeautyguide says:

    Oh my I am in love with this nail lacquer both matte and gloss. Gorgeous!

  20. mec1223Lisa says:

    Love everything about this page!! The polish is absolutely gorgeous and the blog layout is amazing!!

  21. stefani says:

    I love this blue and the new blog design too!!!

  22. Sarah says:

    Very pretty blue! Also, I love the new look.

  23. It’s a beautiful shade. I also love your site redesign, I prefer it to the darker background and it looks great!

  24. Absolutely beautiful! My favorite shade to wear on my nails is bright blue, and this is perfect. Love the new blog layout too! =)

  25. Maribeth says:

    I’m utterly obsessed with blue these days, and this one is just stunning! Beautiful!

  26. Marisa says:

    Such a beautiful blue!!!! Thanks for the comparison. Glad I have something comparable ;0)

What are your thoughts, beautiful?