Illamasqua – Speckled Nail Varnish in Mottle

Illamasqua Mottle opener


Brand new for Spring 2013, Illamasqua introduces a unique new finish in their lacquer lineup released in conjunction with their latest “I’m Perfection” Collection – 5 new shades of Speckled Varnish, meant to mimic the speckled look of bird eggs and all of their imperfect beauty, as found in nature. Of the 5, I was most drawn to ‘Mottle’ –  I love the way the glitter pieces seem to paradoxically stand out and also stay just out of reach, from their seafoam green background, although I confess to having my eye on a few more of these shades – time for another shopping trip, I think.


Illamasqua Mottle newer

Illamasqua – Mottle

Illamasqua Mottle macro newer

Illamasqua Speckled Nail Varnish in Mottle – (CAD $18.00 15 ml/0.5 fl.oz) a milky mint green base filled with ultra fine black glitter as well as black hexagonal glitter pieces in small & medium sizes. With a superb flow and a perfect viscosity to the formula, application was effortless, completely self-levelling, and glossy enough at the finish to make top coat basically redundant – but don’t skip that step nonetheless. Each brush stroke yields a healthy and fairly equal amount of glitter & colour, so no extra “fishing” or placement is needed, although keep in mind that this look is all about “nature” and meant to be slightly imbalanced. I was surprised to find the end result smooth to the touch, as I was expecting a lacquer with this much going on to be rather bumpy – so not the case here. Absolutely loving its diffused/filtered look, as though the glitter has risen from the bottom to come just shy of the surface – totally fascinating. Bonus: fairly easy removal. Coats applied: 3 (thin – mainly for pictures, as 2 coats provides more than adequate coverage), plus top coat.


Illamasqua Mottle swatch

Illamasqua – Mottle


Illamasqua Mottle swatch 2

Illamasqua – Mottle


Illamasqua Mottle swatch macro

Illamasqua – Mottle


Illamasqua Mottle swatch 3

Illamasqua – Mottle


Final thoughts: With all the different types of polishes and finishes that I’ve worn, ‘Mottle’ is the one that made me stare the longest at my nails. There’s a uniqueness to this finish, that I feel elevates it beyond the usual standard glitter polish; understated and almost organic in feel, all the components are in place for something truly special – from the formula, the colour, to the final finish. Then there’s that whole mint-chocolate ice cream vibe it’s got … the final & irresistible push.

Illamasqua varnishes are available through Sephora – I purchased mine in store.


Illamasqua Mottle closer newer

51 Responses to Illamasqua – Speckled Nail Varnish in Mottle

  1. Love the Mottle pastel green color, the blue Fragile was my favorite. Which one was yours from this collection?
    I just did a Illamasqua speckled egg nail review, please come visit and let me know what you think 🙂

    • Eugenia says:

      I regret not picking up Fragile the day I brought Mottle home – although I may still go for it! As to favourites, since I didn’t swatch them all, I couldn’t say for sure but I think Mottle, Fragile and Freckle really caught my eye!
      PS: I enjoyed your review – sounds like you had fun learning about this type of effect polish as well!

      • Thanks! I had fun with this polish effect, although too bad it didn’t last for me. Definitely try fragile as well if you get e chance 🙂

      • Eugenia says:

        As to lasting power, I had no issues at all, but then again, everything wears like iron on me. You might want to ensure that your nail bed is free of all oils before even applying your base coat – try something like a ridge-filling version which could possibly help your polish hang on a bit tighter, then experiment with various top coats, ensuring that you even run the edge of the brush along your nail tips — this might prolong the life of your next mani!

      • That’s a really great tip, thanks! I do have one of those nail prep things, will try it to clear out all oils next time. Also running the top coat along fee edge is a good idea. I do it for soak off gel nails, lol, but it didn’t cross my mind for regular polish too. 🙂

  2. Latoya says:

    I’m so entrenched in my clean, cream formulas that almost nothing can tear me away – these babies included. While I love the idea and think they’re totally neat, I wouldn’t opt to wear these myself – but leave it to Illamasqua to create something totally unique and fun!

    • Eugenia says:

      Seriously though, Illamasqua keeps on coming out with these incredibly original themes! I am a huge fan of their products, and their nail polishes have yet to disappoint!

  3. Holy crap, this colour is amazing!

  4. Out of all the new nail polish finishes as of late, this one is the most unique and interesting to me! I saw that the Sephora near my office was completely cleaned out of stock on these guys. I’m still not in a polish buying mode, but I hope Illamasqua comes out with more combinations in the speckled line. 😀

    • Eugenia says:

      When I picked mine up, the store literally had 2 -3 bottles of each shade, and none of one shade at all — and this was before they even stocked them on the shelves (one of the SA’s there kindly brought them out to show me) – I don’t get it, cause I agree with you – this is one of the most unique finishes to come out in a long time!

  5. Amaris says:

    It really does look like mint chocolate chip ice cream! I love it 🙂

  6. Hi! 🙂 I have Fragile and I LOVE it. It’s true, in person they look so much better. Now I want the purple one too, but their site is out of stock 🙁

    • Eugenia says:

      Awww….my local Sephora didn’t even have these on display when I picked up Mottle, and I think they only had something like 2 bottles of each! I don’t understand that!

  7. I love that speckled effect! It’s a really fresh way of doing “glitter”, while keeping it so very pretty. Like springtime bird eggs!

  8. Sonia Martins says:

    At first I wasn’t too sure about the speckled effect but as I see it, it grows on me… Illamasqua nails it again, I love the twist on the “typical” pastel Spring colours and even matte glitter is not very common 🙂 now the question is, what colour to choose, I have my eye on three (Mottle, Speckled and Fragile) maybe I will treat myself at the end of the month 😀 what about you? What other colours do you have your eye on? 🙂 Take care****

    • Eugenia says:

      They are really unique and I agree; the promo pictures didn’t pull me in all that much either, but in person they are all so much more impressive. As to which other shades I want, that would be Fragile and Freckle — but I may just end up getting them all, lol!

  9. Marisa says:

    This is really beautiful!! Love it on you!

  10. Rola says:

    Illamasqua nail polishes are wonderful. This color is very unique, I love green.

    • Eugenia says:

      The Illamasqua varnish formula has got to rank as one the absolute best that I’ve tried – I have yet to be disappointed with any of the shades!

  11. I really want on of these! They just scream spring to me!

  12. i wish i had gotten this shade now! it looks like mint chocolate chip icecream! i picked up speckle (purple) and freckle (tan) and now i want the whole line. great swatches!

  13. Julia says:

    I like this collection, and this polish in particular, very much. The polishes really do remind me of bird eggs! However, I have mixed feelings about purchasing from Illamasqua after they put out a very offensive advertisement a few months ago and did not offer what I judged to be a satisfactory apology. I think I will stick to similar polishes from other brands (like Nails Inc and Hard Candy).

    • Eugenia says:

      I don’t know which ad you’re referring to, and to be honest, I try not to get involved in matters such as this – I’ve learned that everyone has a unique view & perspective on what is considered “offensive”, but if it bothered you to this extent, I respect your feelings. Glad you can replace this look with another brand!

  14. refinedandpolished says:

    Now I’m pretty sure this is the one I need. Great photos as usual love.

  15. Linda says:

    Pretty and trendy without being too glitzy or over-the-top. Think it looks a lot like Clinique’s Even Better Serum ads (the eggs)…a product that really works, I can attest!

    Thanks for the post, Eugenia! Look forward to what you will be doing next!

    • Eugenia says:

      Thanks Linda, and you’re spot-on with your comment! I hadn’t even realized that it resembles the Clinique ads, but it’s true! Good to hear that that serum works, by the way – thanks for the info!

  16. I totally thought mint chocolate chip ice cream when I saw this! These new speckled shades are so much fun. I think Hard Candy came out with a bunch of similar looking polishes, but there’s no Wal-Mart here (and I don’t like shopping there, to be honest), so I haven’t seen any in person to confirm.

    • Eugenia says:

      You’re right – Hard Candy DID come out with something similar, although I personally haven’t seen them and from my understanding, their glitter seems mainly round. I also can’t vouch for the Hard Candy quality – but I can say how impressive the Illamasqua is! And yeah….shopping at Walmart always guarantees me a massive headache – can’t stand the rudeness of the customers around me!

  17. Okay I gotta ask, how do you keep your cuticles so nice and clean? Seriously, they’re perfect. All the time.

    • Eugenia says:

      Thanks, Nicole! I moisturize like there’s no tomorrow – always have a hand cream nearby & I make the chore of cuticle cleanup easy by A) pushing them back as soon as I’m out of the shower, and B) when I’m watching my favourite tv shows — this way, maintenance becomes super easy!

  18. Sarah says:

    I really should hate these, because I don’t really like matte glitter, but I think they’re gorgeous. I have freckles on my face – may as well have them on my nails, too!

    • Eugenia says:

      Lol! See, it’s not the glitters that are matte per se; it’s the effect of how they seem to be seen as though through a veil – pretty cool, actually. Plus, the polish is naturally very glossy – sort of makes up for that, I guess. Lastly, one of the shades, a taupe base, is actually called “Freckle” – sounds like it has your name on it!

  19. Kyllie says:

    It’s really amazing!!

  20. Kat says:

    Geee this is pretty!

  21. Rachael says:

    It looks so yummy!!! I love all the speckled polishes! Unfortunately I don’t think they’re available in the Sephoras in my country 🙁

    • Eugenia says:

      Awww…perhaps you can order them online? They are available on Sephora’s website, although I believe the blue one ‘Fragile’ may be out of stock at the moment.

  22. stefani says:

    This polish is so pretty, is like a candy!!

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