Is Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear “Coral Reef” a dupe for Illamasqua “Lament”?

Today I have a most awesome comparison brought to you by Jamie.nail blog

Jamie’s sharp eye saw the similarities between Illamasqua “Lament” and Sally Hansen XtremeWear “Coral Reef”

I do believe we may have found one of the most perfect dupes…

Illamasqua Lament Nail ComparisonIndex/Ring- Sally Hansen * Middle/Pinky- Illamasqua

All swatches each show 2 coats of Sally Hansen and 2 Coats of Illamasqua.

Illamasqua Lament ComparisonSally Hansen Coral Reef Comparison

I will try to break down the differences, but keep in mind I am *really* looking for them in this one. They are so similar, I even had to make a notation of which lacquer was on which nail.

Sally Hansen “Coral Reef” is ever so slightly more pink and ever so slightly less cool toned. Illamasqua “Lament” dries much quicker, although the Sally Hansen isn’t unreasonable nor unusual in it’s dry time.

They both dry to the same finish, which is very slick and shiny without a topcoat. The opacity and formula performance is equal. In bottle, Illamasqua looks about one shade darker than Hansen in bottle.

When I swatched these, I noted that the in-bottle difference transferred to nail as well with Illamasqua being one shade darker than the Hansen. BUT WAIT! As they dried, I found myself crossing off “one shade” and replacing it with “1/2 shade”, then “1/4″ shade. Lament is about 1/4 of a shade darker.

Illamasqua “Lament” averages $16 for .5oz

Sally Hansen “Coral Reef” averages $2.08 for .4oz

What other differences can there be?

I broke down the ingredients of these two polishes, and while different, Sally Hansen basically has a few more fillers. Both companies are “Big 3 free” (formaldehyde, toluene and dibutyl phthalate (DBP).

They are both flammable.

Dupes? Well, what do you think?

Sally Hansen Xtreme Coral Reef Comparison

Illamasqua nail lacquer can be found at select Sephoras in-store, on the Sephora website and at

Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear lacquer can be found at almost all drugstores, Target, Walmart and much more. This availability translates online as well and can be found at numerous venues including one of my favorites places (is clickable and will open in new window): ULTA who always has amazing deals such as BOGO, free shipping and more.


  • Betty says:

    I have had my eye on coral reef for awhile…but somehow, knowing it is a dupe for Illamasqua makes me want it more! Hopefully I’ll have it one day soon!

    • Christina says:

      Hah! I know the feeling. Every time I hear something is a dupe for something else (namely Illamasqua and Chanel) all of a sudden I *need* it. But, that being said, I’ve never regretted it!

  • Jessica says:

    Uh oh! I smell a dupe! lol

    • Christina says:

      Smell, hear, see, taste. …maybe not taste. They are extremeeellllyy well matched. Well done, Hansen!

  • aurelie says:

    Lovely color! I need this Sally Hansen nail polish :)

  • Danielle says:

    You brought “Coral Reef” to my attention …. and today I FOUND IT! I think i squealed a tad in the middle of Longs Drug Store LOL …. Thank you for this post.

    • Christina says:

      And you just made me squeal at the mention of Longs Drugs. Wow, Nostalgia!! Since moving to Arizona I haven’t seen any of those in a very long time!

  • jamie says:

    YAY FOR THIS POST! Thank you so much for doing the comparison! I love your blog!!!

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