The Great, Big Night Sky Lacquer Round-up


(Eye of Copernicus is a press sample.)


Back in 1996, Chanel and Seventeen magazine sponsored a “color of the year” nail polish color competition.  The inaugural winner was the now-legendary Ciel de Nuit/Night Sky, the birth of my first lemming.

I didn’t pursue this lemming until I saw it for auction on eBay in 2009.  By then I had started to collect nail polish and I HAD to have it in my collection…which resulted in my highest-priced polish ever.  I lost the auction initially, but the seller offered to sell me another for my bid price ($140) in a second-chance offer.

Chanel Ciel de Nuit.jpg

Ciel de Nuit/Night Sky is a deep navy jelly filled with fine silver glitter.

As with many trends, Ciel de Nuit spawned knock-offs galore.  The most well-known one is Essie’s Starry Starry Night, released in 1997.  I admired SSN from afar, initially thinking in 2008 that $50 was too much to spend on a polish…little did I know that I would eventually bid $120 in an eBay auction to obtain it at the end of 2009.

Essie Starry Starry Night.jpg

Starry Starry Night is a dark royal blue jelly filled with fine silver glitter.

Now that we’ve addressed the two main night sky polishes, here are the myriad knock-offs. 

Essie's Retro Revival of Starry Starry Night was a huge let-down.  I feel like they didn't even try to emulate the original.

Chinoiserie Stellar Night.jpg

Chinoiserie Stellar Night

Christian Dior Sparkling Blueberry.jpg

Christian Dior Sparkling Blueberry

Wet 'N Wild The Nail Zone Starry Night.jpg

Wet 'N Wild The Nail Zone Starry Night

Bonne Bell NailGear Scandal.jpg

Bonne Bell NailGear Scandal

Fing'rs Bear Blue Glitter.jpg

Fing'rs Bear Blue Glitter

Revlon Street Wear Dark.jpg

Revlon Street Wear Dark

Rescue Beauty Lounge Under The Stars.jpg

Rescue Beauty Lounge Under The Stars

Nat Robbins Midnight Hour.jpg

Nat Robbins Midnight Hour

Jessica Twilight

Naturistics Super Shine Crystal Blue Pearl.jpg

Naturistics Super Shine Crystal Blue Pearl

Maybelline Express Finish Zip Fly.jpg

Maybelline Express Finish Zip Fly

Chi Chi Moondust

China Glaze Skyscraper

Orly Silent Night.jpg

Orly Silent Night

BB Couture For Men Night Ops.jpg

BB Couture For Men Night Ops

L'Oreal LaquiResist Ocean.jpg

L'Oreal LaquiResist Ocean

Here are differences I’ve noticed while swatching:

Base color:  CdN has a deep navy base, while SSN is a dark royal blue.  Jessica Twilight and Naturistics Crystal Blue Pearl have indigo-leaning bases.

Glitter:  The traditional glitter is a fine silver glitter.  SW Dark and RBL Under the Stars have glass-flecks rather than glitter.  The glitter in the Bonne Bell and Retro Revival SSN is significantly larger.  The glitter also differs in volume, from heavier proportions in ChG Skyscraper and Chi Chi Moondust to sparser in WnW Starry Night.

Opacity:  The glass-flecked polishes are more opaque than most of the glitter polishes.  Zip Fly has an opaque shimmer base.

While reviewing my polishes, I realize I don’t have Picture Polish’s Cosmos and Orbit, two night sky-esque polishes.  Here’s a link to the Polishaholic’s posts about Cosmos and Orbit.

If you’re looking for ready-to-buy options, here are two:

Pretty Serious Eye of Copernicus.jpg

Pretty Serious Cosmetics Eye of Copernicus was developed from Chanel Ciel de Nuit.  Kaz, the overlord of Pretty Serious Cosmetics, sacrificed more than half of her bottle for the cause.  I was ecstatic when this was released, because I was down to 40% of my bottle of CdN and could finally conserve it.

Colors by Llarowe Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.jpg

Colors by Llarowe Twinkle Twinkle Little Star is a close facsimile of Essie Starry Starry Night.

Phew, that was a lot.  I hope you enjoy this post...I spent 2 weekends swatching!  Thanks for reading if you made it all the way down here!