Illamasqua: ‘Prosperity’ Nail Varnish – Limited Edition Rubber Brights Collection (swatches & review)


It’s not often that the word “rubber” is associated with nail lacquer … unless it happens to come from Illamasqua. This peculiar finish was first introduced in the fall of 2011 with the brand’s ‘Theatre of the Nameless’ collection (previously reviewed here), where its unique look became an instant hit. Recently released as a Sephora exclusive, ‘Prosperity’ is one of 10 new varnishes now available in this “dominatrix-chic” finish – whips not included.

the 10 Rubber Brights shades (source)

Prosperity – boxed


‘Prosperity’ is a paradox in more ways than one; this vivid purple colour which bears some magenta tones in its base but can also look slightly blue-tinged in other lighting, falls somewhere between cool and warm, making it easily worn by all skin hues across the spectrum. The formula was STELLAR: a perfect flow with great opacity even by the first coat, levelling off utterly smooth. Verging into neon territory when initially applied, its unique finish soon tamps down the colour to a lesser intensity, although no less vibrant. The rubberized finish takes about 1 1/2 minutes to develop, leaving nails looking softly diffused, as though seen through a filter. Ridiculously COOL! Coats applied: 2

Another benefit to a varnish with this finish, is that you can easily change things up by adding a layer of top coat for a glossier look, or take things back down a notch by applying a mattifying varnish, as evidenced by the 3 looks I’m showing for each of the following swatches (all done with base coat).

  • the original rubberized finish looks almost 3D and slightly “out-of-focus”, almost fuzzy
  • the glossy look really emphasizes its “purpleness”, turning up the intensity
  • the mattified version muddies up its appearance by making it look slightly flat – an even easier way to wear a colour this extreme

in sunlight

in sunlight, top coat added

in sunlight, mattified

shaded light

shaded light, top coat added

shaded light, mattified

with flash

with flash, top coat added

with flash, mattified


Final thoughts: I absolutely love the chameleon-like properties of this finish; the super-vivid colour ensures your nails will get noticed, then the rubberized finish will guarantee a double-take. Bearing an amazing formula that almost applies itself, doesn’t hurt either – that’s for sure. Something about this entire look is almost subliminally seductive, yet still manages to stay modern & sophisticated … not sure how Illamasqua managed to capture all those qualities in a bottle of nail varnish, but there it is.

Illamasqua’s ‘Prosperity’ (CDN $18.00/15 ml), is one of the 10 limited edition ‘Rubber Finish Nail Varnishes’ and available only through Sephora as an online exclusive – get ’em while they’re hot!




*Disclaimer: Product sample provided by the company/PR for my unbiased consideration

34 Responses to Illamasqua: ‘Prosperity’ Nail Varnish – Limited Edition Rubber Brights Collection (swatches & review)

  1. Larie says:

    The rubber finish is growing on me, though it still kind of creeps me out a little bit 😛 Also, I always wonder if it catches dust! Haha.

    • Eugenia says:

      Lol….I hadn’t thought of the dust angle — maybe I should be carrying a lint-free cloth whenever I wear this shade! 🙂 Good to hear that you like it, though – even if it still holds a creep factor for you!!!

  2. It is absolutely gorgeous!

  3. I’m definitely not a fan of the rubber but am glad you showed us all the options with the different top coats! So thorough, I love it. Guess you can’t take the classic out of me – still prefer the glossy creme finish above all else!

    • Eugenia says:

      It was fun trying it out so many different ways; even though I really liked the uniqueness factor of the rubberized finish, you already know what a “colour purist” I am and I’ll never give up my glossy cremes either! 🙂

  4. Latoya says:

    I’m all over this! I love the rubberized finish, actually, which is unusual because I’m not a huge fan of matte. It also looks great with a glossy finish too 🙂 And I love the color…..Ok, there’s just nothing about this that I don’t love!!

    • Eugenia says:

      Here’s the thing with this finish; it never comes off as matte, as there is a sheen left behind – almost as though you’re viewing it through gauze. In any case, it’s gorgeous and so versatile too! Glad you liked it, my friend!

  5. I likey this finish! It’s different! And this colour is super bright!

  6. Ashley says:

    Love these! I hate spending that much on a polish, but these look totally worth it! Now I just have to decide which color I want…

    • Eugenia says:

      Lol…the eternal debate over colour….but I definitely hear you about the cost; the way I like to justify it, is that at least you’re getting your money’s worth with regards to the quality & colour!

  7. Alison says:

    I saw this in the U.S. both on line and in store. A couple of teens were painting skittles of all the colors. But the purple was the one I went for too, and your post explains why. I have a very neutral skin tone leaning a tad warm and picking the right shades is an art– more so face than nails. But the color works and the purple is such a classic and very Illamasquian shade, that having the variation in finish means I’ll get good use out of the classic.

    • Eugenia says:

      Ooooooh….love that term: “Illamasquian” – will have to add that one to the list, thanks Alison! You totally got what I meant about ‘Prosperity’, and I agree about what a versatile, modern, and totally classic Illamasqua shade it is! Enjoy!

  8. Maddie Shen says:

    Super pretty! Love them! Random side question, is Jack from RBL’s GOMM collection similar to Butter London British Racing Green?

    • Eugenia says:

      Glad you liked it! As to RBL’s ‘Jack’, it has blue shimmer in its base whereas BL’s ‘British racing Green’ has tone-on-tone green shimmer, both quite different from each other as a result. Hope that helps!

      • Maddie Shen says:

        Thanks so much! It did help, I decided to buy Jack along with Santa Fe and Ghost! I’m so excited for my new babies to arrive! Love swatches as usual. 🙂

      • Eugenia says:

        Thanks Maddie and for the record, I love your choices — then again, I love that entire collection! Glad I was able to lend a hand! (PS: have fun with your upcoming arrivals!)

  9. olivia says:

    I think these polishes will go well with my latex suit and my mask! oops I revealed a bit too much about myself!

  10. whatthenail says:

    I want this! So cool!

  11. Julia says:

    Ohh, I love it as much as you said! I already have Vice and Faux Pas and I’m thinking I need to add this and the blue in the bottom row. It looks great glossy, too. For fellow American readers, I have personally seen this collection at Sephora in-store (and not some fancy flagship Sephora either!) and have heard that others have as well. I have some online-only Sephora gift cards though so I think I’m going to be getting these off the website after all.

    (PS: You cracked me up with “dominatrix chic–whips not included”, hee!!!!)

    • Eugenia says:

      Lol….hope it wasn’t too trashy to say so! 😉 It’s funny that even on Sephora’s website they specifically state that it’s an “online exclusive only”, yet you mentioned seeing them in person – go figure! Personally, I’m glad that they’re available in store – this way you get to see (and try) before you buy! Glad you liked the shade, Julia!

  12. Grace says:

    WOW! I will own this lacquer! it is the perfect PURPLE – not to mention it is “the purple” color for many collegiate and pro football fans & of course soccer team colors too! LUV THIS POST! Thank you for sharing the information. I will be calling and / or ordering ASAP! Now, I have at least three ILLAMASQUA lacquers on my must have list! Now, I need to find a second job! LOL! I will send you a picture after my purchase! Yippie! Thank you for the insight Eugenia! Everyone- have a great Tuesday!

    • Eugenia says:

      So glad you enjoyed the review, Grace! Hopefully you’ll get a hold of at least one Illamasqua lacquer soon — then you’ll understand what all the fuss is about! 🙂 Looking forward to that picture!

  13. iLOVE says:

    wow. this is amazing! great review 🙂 what top coats did you use?

  14. Amanda says:

    That rubbery finish is just too amazing for words. And that shade of purple! Whoo, that’s a beauty. I need to get my hands on an Illamasqua one of these days…they are just too pretty not to have in my possession.

    Thanks, Eugenia!

    • Eugenia says:

      You’re welcome, Amanda! Every single Illamasqua varnish I have is totally unbelievable, in terms of colour and formula – and this new finish just adds a whole new dimension to their range! Hope you get a chance to try them out soon for yourself – you’ll definitely see what I mean!

  15. This is gorgeous! I didn’t try any of their rubber finish polishes with the previous collection, but I may be taking a trip to Sephora soon.

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