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Don’t Call It A Comeback – NARS Zulu Returns

By on July 6, 2010
in Fall 2010, Green, NARS

nars-zulu-nail-polish-fall-2010 ***Edited to add: The launch has been pushed back to October 2010.

July 15th is coming fast Fanatics. Will you be greeting NARS Zulu with open arms when it makes its triumphant return with the NARS Fall 2010 collection? That’s right, in case you haven’t heard the rumors, NARS is bringing back that famous dark green jelly.  The one that Sephora put on the cover of their holiday catalog a few years ago, causing a frenzy.

I was fortunate to have a good MUA Nail Board pal gift me a bottle of Zulu for Christmas that year which makes me very curious about Zulu 2.0.  You see, after getting this lusted after color I discovered that the pigmentation is crap and the application is decent at best.  I still covet my bottle none-the-less and plan to get Zulu 2010 for comparison purposes but this re-release raises a few questions…

Will the color be a match?  Will it still be a jelly?  Will NARS fix the pigmentation issues?  Will their updated 3-Free formula apply better?  Will Zulu still cause a stir now that we have so many OTHER amazing greens at our disposal? Are we so over the whole “almost black” thing that even the return of a mythical unicorn like Zulu won’t get us, as a nail community, back on board?

Just to get you excited on what we POSSIBLY have to come, here is a swatch of the ORIGINAL Zulu.

What you see below is three medium coats. Can you see my issue? Streaky, uneven coverage.  Patchiness. The color at this point is what I’d want Zulu to be but the holes are begging me to add another layer.

nars zulu nail polish swatch

Finally with four coats we get a flawless, jelly finish but I’m like the only person who can tell it’s green. It’s similar to Zoya Envy in that respect. Envy is more mossy but it’s definitely tip-toeing on that “almost black” territory.

nars zulu green jelly nail polish swatch part of the nars fall 2010 makeup collection

Of course I adore my darling Nikki (Prince reference not intended) for my lovely bottle of Zulu and I will always cherish it but I sincerely hope that the updated Zulu performs better.

The NARS Fall 2010 collection launches online July 15th at and at counters nationwide in August.  Nail polishes retail for $16/ea for a .5oz bottle.

***EDITED TO ADD:  The launch date has been pushed back until October 2010.  No need to stalk the NARS website on July 15th***

Who’s adding Zulu to their shopping lists?  If you already own Zulu will you be buying a backup?  What are your thoughts about the questions I posed above?  Is there anything I missed?

Disclosure: NARS Zulu (original version) was gifted to me by a friend. For more info view my Disclosure Policy.

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There Are 47 Brilliant Comments

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  1. Stephanie says:

    I’d love to see a swatch comparison with Zoya’s Envy to see what the difference is :)

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      When the new Zulu comes out, I’ll be doing comparisons.

      • origami says:

        Do you think you would be able do a swatch comparison of any other greens which might fit the bill in terms of color? Even if you did it with the old Zulu that would be fab! I’d be eager to see something like that before I decide whether to pick up the new release Zulu.

  2. zb says:

    I have an Nfu Oh that’s really close, but I gotta have Zulu =)

  3. emily says:

    Nope! I like Envy better. plus $16 is alot (call me cheap) to pay for 1 bottle that may or may not have good coverage. Now if it were glitter…THEN I’d be all up on it :)

  4. pinksoysauce says:

    I’ll have to buy this regardless, just for its past elusive, almost-collectible reputation. I hope the formula issues are fixed though; $16 is a lot for one bottle of nail polish.

  5. kelliegonzo says:

    uuhh YES! considering i don’t have a bottle of the original i will for SURE be picking up at least two bottles of this guy :D

  6. lacquerholic says:

    OMG I can’t believe it’s back. I know I won’t be able to resist. I missed out on the bandwagon last time and I will not be out of the loop again!!!

  7. grace says:

    I do feel like I have other polishes that are very similar in color, but none of them are jellies. I guess the question is… how much do I care? I don’t mind the “almost black” thing the way a lot of people do, but I’m not sure I’ll be shelling out that much $ just to get the jelly finish.

  8. Jywoi says:

    I’m quite happy with the news, will pick one bottle (if it launches in France). Is it the only one they are bringing back? I’d prefer for them to bring back Platoon or Mash, I’ve been dying to own them!

    Thank you for the news!

    • melli says:

      I totally agree with you. I will probably buy a bottle just to say I own it, but I would love Platoon and Mash to return!

  9. Nicole says:

    nah..I’ll pass. Maybe it’s me, but Sephora OPI’s Dark Room looks exactly the same to me. I don’t need another dupe.

  10. Katy M says:

    Yea! Honestly, I can’t wait. I will surely be ordering online on the 15th. I think it’s more the collector in me that wants it than my fashionista side. I’ll just feel warm and smiley knowing a bottle is in my stash. :)

  11. Duffi says:

    The collectible aspect? The fact that it’s green? I’ve gotta have it. I’m with KatyM: I’ll feel delighted knowing that it’s Mine.

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      I hear ya. I’m the same way. I wish I didn’t have the collecting gene. I just know one day Hoarders is going to show up at my door.

  12. Heather says:

    Hi! I’ve been meaning to comment on your blog sooner, but I couldn’t wait any longer when I read this post! I was just reading about the green nail polish this weekend!!

    I personally LOVE the green so dark that it looks black. Awesome.

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      Hi Heather! If I’m not mistaken you’re a fellow CLE blogger, right? So glad you found my blog and took the time to comment. I’m glad you like the color. If you want some instant gratification try Zoya Envy (a local nail polish brand) or OPI Here Today Aragon Tomorrow.

  13. Sarah says:

    I’ve always thought Zulu was pretty and so I’ve wanted it but after seeing compairisons of a dark green Nfu Oh and Zoya Envy, they’re very similar and I’m not thrilled with Envy or OPI Here Today Aragorn Tomorrow because they’re basically black. Your review of Zulu’s quality and final color aren’t promising to me :-\

  14. NailPolishFan says:

    I can’t wait for NARS Zulu. I don’t own it, but I’ve seen swatches on other nail polish sites and it’s gorge.Could you compare Nars Zulu to Orly Enchanted Forest? They seem quite similar.
    Thank You:)

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      I don’t think Enchanted Forest is as dark but I’ll be sure to pull it out when I’m doing comparisons with the new Zulu.

  15. Morgie P says:

    It looks exactly like OPI’s Here Today…Aragon Tomorrow from the Spain Collection. Which I love, but once you have one almost-black green, you kinda have them all, know what I’m saying?

  16. cara says:

    I think this is still quite a nice shade. When it had it’s original heyday I attempted to franken a dupe which turned out a bit closer to RBL Recycle. There’s some room at the top of my bottle of that so perhaps some black will jump in and the true dupe will be born! Thanks for the heads up!

  17. Cheska says:

    Honestly, I never really did get all the hype for Zulu. The color isn’t that original, and you can find other “almost black” greens for cheaper. $16 is expensive, especially for a 20 year old who’s unemployed. The most I’d pay for a polish is $12.50, and that’s for Nfu-Oh.

  18. kateM says:

    On the fence, so many beautiful greens available now that unless the formula is fantastic I don’t see it happening. (Sadly by the time the new swatches are out there it will probably sell out again)

  19. Stacey says:

    This color originally came out in the mid nineties. The application was great. Unfortunately I did not get a chance to get it when it came out again two years ago. I look forward to getting it. With Zulu, there was a beautiful navy. Hopefully that will be in the collection too.

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      Midnight Express, right? From what I understand Zulu is the only nail color in this collection but it would be nice to see that come back. When they relaunched some “vintage” shades last year I was hoping to hear Mash, Platoon, Zulu & Midnight Express would be included. Instead they put out colors I had absolutely no interest.

  20. Solveig says:

    I honestly can’t see what the fuss is about this one, but I’m not that crazy about greens either.

  21. Jackie S.. says:

    A deep green jelly, I can’t pass that up! I’ll be stalking it at my local Nordstroms on July 15th.

    Hopefully Midnight Express will be enxt?

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      One can only hope. I haven’t heard anything yet but *fingers crossed*

  22. Goose says:

    Although I love greens and have always thought Zulu was beautiful (based on swatches online… I don’t own it), I don’t know if I’ll be getting this one. I recently bough Nfu Oh 569 and to me it looks like an EXACT dupe of Zulu.

    For those the like the green that Zulu appears to be at three coats, try Illamasqua Rampage! It is the most gorgeous jelly green I’ve ever seen. It, too, requires a few coats (3-4) but it comes out such a beautiful shiny green that looks dark in artificial light and brighter in natural light. To me, it looks like a slightly lighter version of Zulu, and with application that’s at least somewhat better.


    • All Lacquered Up says:

      I agree, Rampage is gorgeous and one of the colors Sephora carries so it’s accessible in the US.

  23. Lunuland says:

    It so pretty, but I have Envy…what to do…

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      It’s very different from Envy so you’re in luck. I was just using Envy as a reference to the “almost black” look. Envy is mossier and doesn’t have the jelly finish that Zulu does. Does that help?

  24. Laynie says:

    You know, I’m kind of lucky in that I’m not terribly interested in what’s crazy collectible, or what’s all the rage. I’m more interested in what I think will look good on me, and I don’t think that would look good on me. Plus, I’m just too darn cheap to spend $16 on a bottle of nail polish, especially right now.

  25. Kate & Zena says:

    Hm, I do hope the formula is better. Even Illamasqua’s Rampage evens out on the second coat (I do three because I love the depth of the polish).

    I know Scrangie did a comparison between Zulu and Rampage, but could you do one as well?

  26. Sharon says:

    I wasn’t following your blog when this first came out but now…..I may actually have seen the very FIRST green polish I would like to have !!!! I love the jelly appearance. Another green convert ???? :)Maybe. The price may be the reason I don’t buy it but I would like to.

  27. Zemlet says:

    I’m over “almost black”. I’m thinking “almost grey” is more Fall 2010, like the upcoming purpley-grey Chanel shade. If someone did a similar treatment to green that would get me talking. While I appreciate bringing an elusive favorite back (although I was over not having it a year ago), why not try to invent the next new must-have instead? I would like to see Nars be more of a leader and feel this means they’ve lost their edge.

  28. Sophia says:

    I absolutely love this color. I’ve been wearing turquoise polish basically all the summer since it’s been the color of the season. Here’s to dark green!

  29. Arrianne says:

    I want to resist, but I don’t think I will be able to. I’m with the others. It’s jelly, it’s green and it’s collectable! I just wish it wasn’t so near black.

  30. Victoria says:

    is it similar to OPI’s here today aragon tomorrow?

  31. alex says:

    Don’t forget about the other 4 fabulous colors that are being relaunched along with Zulu!!!!!!!!!!
    October 2010

  32. alex says:

    Ones that were very much desired and still wanted now. One or 2 you mentioned above….Midnight…..,

  33. amy says:

    when sephora had this I tried and failed to get it, so I would probably be getting this because I would love to add this to my collection. It is a gorgeous dark green; however, I have always had issues with NARS nailpolishes. I hope this new Zulu would apply smooth and pigmented and the texture not thick or thin.

  34. alisha says:

    reminds me of OPI HEre Again Argon Tomorrow.

  35. laliqueheart says:

    Zulu is out in the UK as of last week. It’s being sold exclusively in Space NK stores (not on the website) at the moment as part of the Vintage 2010 collection. The others in the collection are Mash, King Kong, Full Metal Jacket and Midnight Express. The shop I was in today has already sold out of Mash and only had two bottles of Zulu left!

  36. ariella says:

    I just bought new Zulu today and it’s gorgeous. It applies beautifully, and looks glassy and rich on. The color is bright and saturated. It’s everything you could want in a polish.

  37. Kristina, lover of polish says:

    It’s official. The Zulu is now available on the nars website! I just ordered Zulu, Mash and Full Metal Jacket. If you want to order, go there now!