Daily Vanity Logo

Created in 1994 by Chanel’s then-director of makeup, Dominique Moncourtois, this sultry cherry-black nail polish was an instant hit, going against traditionally light nail colours that mainstream cosmetic companies had typically produced.

Known as “Vamp” (or “Rogue Noir” in the UK market), the polish became so legendary that it became the fifth bestselling nail polish in the world by the turn of the century. It even has its own Wikipedia Page today.

Credit: @erinparsonsmakeup/TikTok

According to a 1995 blog archive from The Oklahoman, stores had to weather a long, dry spell after the city polished off their supplies by December of the previous year.

“In April, we had a 59-person waiting list. Surprisingly, its popularity isn’t fading – even though summer usually signals a return to bright pink or pastel polish,” a Chanel store personnel noted.

Where have you seen it?

The demand for “Vamp” was so strong all over the country, that Chanel could not ship enough at times. And it wasn’t just the public that was enamoured with this ultra-cool shade either, A-listers were vying for it too.

Rumour has it that Madonna herself called Karl Lagerfeld’s office to request samples of the new shade, the day after it was shown during Chanel’s 1994 spring/summer runway show. “Vamp” eventually made an appearance in her Take a Bow music video.

Credit: “Take a Bow” music video/YouTube

Actress Demi Moore allegedly had no other choice than to purchase the tester of the famous nail polish as there were none available in Beverly Hills.

The shade

The colour of “Vamp” is best described as a dark burgundy colour with a hint of purple and micro shimmer that’s understatedly chic. As with all other shades in the Le Vernis line by Chanel, it’s a long-wearing, extra-fine, and ultra-shiny nail polish that provides a lacquered finish.

Some have described the colour to be the perfect “dried blood” shade, making it deservedly apt for whenever Halloween rolls around.

This edgy shade also fits in well with the Dark Feminine aesthetic that’s been circulating on TikTok in recent months.

Chanel “Vamp” aka “Rogue Noir” Le Vernis Nail Colour retails for S$46 and is available at Chanel.sg.

Dupes for the iconic shade

While not exact to the viral 90’s nail polish shade, here are some close alternatives that you can get in preparation for the upcoming fall and winter season.

Sephora Collection Color Hit Nail Polish in “Private Boudoir”

This elegant deep red shade from Sephora’s very own collection is a wallet-friendly alternative to the famous Chanel polish.

Sephora Collection Color Hit Nail Polish in “Private Boudoir” retails for S$9 at Sephora.sg.

Butter London Patent Shine 10X Nail Lacquer in “Afters”

This shade from Butter London is a slightly more cool-toned version of “Vamp”.

Butter London Patent Shine 10X Nail Lacquer in “Afters” retails for S$28 at Sephora.sg.

Revlon Creme Nail Enamel in “Vixen”

Credit Amazon

This is probably the closest dupe to Chanel’s vamp we’ve found by the well-loved drugstore brand Revlon.

Revlon Creme Nail Enamel in “Vixen” retails for S$10.61 at Amazon.com. A sale is available at the time of writing. Click in to see the latest price!

Featured image credit: @Yuanbao and Xiaotian porridge/Xiao Hong Shu, @erinparsonsmakeup/TikTok