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China Glaze Up & Away Swatches, Review & Comparisons – Part 1

By on December 11, 2009
in China Glaze, Creme, Purple, Spring 2010, Yellow
china-glaze-up-and-away-collection-spring-2010 I don’t know about you but after this train wreck of a year, I could use some mood lifters to kick off 2010 and the Up & Away collection from China Glaze fits the bill.

I try to keep ALU positive so I haven’t really shared the disaster that was 2009 for me.  Professionally it’s been a dream year, personally a train wreck. I really won’t get into the deets but can we all hope for a happy 2010??  I’m gearing up wearing the fun, uplifting shades from Up & Away, a collection of creamy pastels and bright pops of color.

I’m breaking the collection up into three parts so I can show you color comparisons for each shade.  With 12 colors, that would be one LONG post so I broke it up to make it easier to digest.  Let’s kick this party off with the purples and yellows.  Check them out!

So before we jump into the colors I have to talk about the formula.  China Glaze, you know I love you but the pastels were kind of difficult to work with.  It seems there are two types of light colors.  Either they’re opaque & thick or sheer & thin.  Finding that happy middle ground is like hunting down a bottle of OPI Rainforest (ie HARD!).

So while the deeper, bright shades have pleased me to no end, the pastels are definite problem children.  They leave stroke marks, don’t level out well and are pretty thick.  I know I’m not a pro manicurist but I consider myself to have some skill and if I’m having trouble, I think most people will.  If you really love a color, I suggest three thin coats and a thick top coat to help fix any glitches.

Lemon Fizz is a summery pale yellow creme.  It has a buttery softness but it definitely dries a bit darker than the bottle color suggests.  It makes me think of baby chicks, all fuzzy and sweet looking.


While Lemon Fizz has no dupes in my collection, OPI Banana Bandanna does come close with Lemon Fizz being just slightly more pale.  The other pastels I own in this range are either too yellow/green or too warm.  This one falls perfectly in the middle.  I’m thinking it would make a great spring pedi, no?


Happy Go Lucky is traffic stopping, taxi cab, sunny side up, egg yolk yellow.  It screams, “Look at me, I’m Yellow!”  I just wish yellows applied better.  There must be something about the pigment.  While Happy Go Lucky is a ton of fun, it’s not that fun to apply.  Don’t get me wrong, you can get it to look nice but it takes some work.


To the polish savvy eye, Happy Go Lucky isn’t an exact dupe of Misa Happy Happy but if you already own the Misa, skip this one because no one but you will be able to tell the difference.


Light As Air has a slight pink undertone that makes it look more lilac than the “periwinkle” China Glaze describes it as.


Being that most pale purples give me “alien hands syndrome” very few survive to live in my collection.  One of the few and the one I expected comparison requests for is China Glaze Agent Lavender from Operation Color.  That one is much more of a true periwinkle to me with its bluish tone.


Grape Pop is a love at first sight type situation.  Purples and I are all BFF and all but a creme purple, well do I even need to go there?  Rich, vibrant, smooth, well pigmented.  It’s got all the makings of a champion.


Now this is all tongue-in-cheek but, China Glaze why you trying to steal my thunder?  Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right?  All kidding aside, Grape Pop is a gorgeous color and in the same vein as RBL Mismas but they’re not dupes.  I have yet to find a Mismas dupe (& Misa Sorry Just Can’t Help It or OPI Can You Dig It? aren’t even close) but I’ll give Grape Pop props for coming close.  It’s significantly more blue-based in person but that just doesn’t translate on screen.


The Up & Away collection from China Glaze is slated to go on sale in January 2010 but if it’s ready earlier I’m sure it will start shipping out some time this month. Keep your eyes on your local Sally Beauty and your fave e-tailers to scoop up these colors.

What do we think so far? See any must-haves? Have you found a truly phenom yellow that is opaque and smooth? I’d love to hear your recs.

Disclosure: A product sample was furnished to me by Priti’s PR rep. For further information view my Disclosure Policy.

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  1. China Glaze Up & Away Swatches, Review & Comparisons - Part 1 … Reviews Me | December 11, 2009
  2. P'ssion » Blog Archive » V | January 6, 2010
  1. Elena says:

    I’ve only got 4 yellows in my stash -green is hands down my favourite colour- so I can rank them easily:
    1- Nubar Lemon Sorbet – beautiful soft colour, zero application issues.
    2- Orly Spark – a bit more yellow than LM, good application.
    3- Diamond Cosmetics Yellow Lemon Zest – too “taxi cab” yellow for my liking, very good application.
    4- ChG Solar Yellow – I like the shimmer it has, but it stays dentable for too long, even with Seche Vite.

    Love your swatches. I’m dying to see the greens!

  2. ainamakeup says:

    The minute I saw that purple I thought it was a dupe of your RBL shade! LOL

  3. Jennifer A. says:

    Sorry this year hasn’t been awesome for you, but thank you so so much for deciding to swatch all of these and doing comparisons! I love your pics so much and so far I want/need all of them except Happy Go Lucky.

  4. LizKS says:

    I LOVE Grape Pop!!! Can’t wait to buy it!

  5. Duffi says:

    None of these really move me; I don’t do yellow (I have enough of that in my skintone, lol). And I’d rather have Mismas than Grape Pop, even though I adore China Glaze.

    Here’s hoping 2010 is a better year for you? {{{hugs}}}

  6. Nicole says:

    2009 has definitely had it’s ups and downs for me as well. 2010 has promise but we’ll see how things go :P
    As for the colors, I am not normally a yellow person, although Lemon Fizz is pretty. Yellow tends to wash me right out so not sure if I’d go for this one or not. Grape Pop definitely catches my eye! I’m sad to say I don’t own Mismas yet though I will eventually, but I like that this one is a touch lighter.

  7. Allison says:

    I don’t mind the first or second yellow. It might be cool to throw a glitter coat over it. Just to add a little disco to it.

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      Glitter makes everything better!

      • Jennifer A. says:

        Speaking of glitter…did you ever get any of the China Glaze glitters that came out this fall? And if so, will you ever be swatching them? I can understand why you wouldn’t as swatching glitter is a hassle, but it would be lovely having comparisons of some of the similar ones from you!

  8. Virginia says:

    Thanks so much for your swatches. Looking forward to the rest! I know what you mean about 2009 so I hope we all have a better 2010!

  9. Lourdes says:

    Thansk for posting the China Glaze review!!! Hope 2010 will bring even better success professionally and a BIG improvement personally.

  10. Em says:

    Thank you! I’m so excited for this collection and looking forward to the rest of your swatches! I like how you are showing close-up side by side comparisons, it really helps a lot, it’s my deciding factor because I don’t like purchasing dupes! Can’t wait to see the others :)

    BTW- Since you’ve shown Mismas, does Grape Pop compare to ‘Orly- Charged Up’ at all?

  11. zb says:

    I’m sorry to hear the pastels are gloopy (and I completely love all things CG). I’m tempted to try the RBL yellow (Square Pants?).

    2009 is almost over and you can put it behind you. Here’s to a great 2010!!!

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      I love Square Pants even though it’s on the sheer side. It’s buildable and smooth. It was intended to be worn sheer but I don’t play that game

  12. zb says:

    Ooohhh… forgot to mention that Mismas is on my 12/15 RBL order list :-)

  13. Kelsey says:

    You know, as much as I love the color green and lust after all of the green polishes that come out each season, nearly every one that I’ve tried so far give me

  14. Sharon says:

    Doubt I will ever see yellow in my collection but said the same thing about green until you influenced me :)
    Don’t think I will be adding any of these to my collection but that is a good thing….I have way too much nail polish and not enough money.

    I hope 2010 is a great year for you Michelle and hoping the same for me. I haven’t had really bad years lately just really blah years.

  15. melli says:

    Hey Michelle,

    Lovely swatches as always, and I appreciate the reviews of the formulas. I love yellows, and every single one I own is a streaky mess until coat 3 or 4. So, no surprises here. The lavender is too pale for me, and I love Mismas too much…there is no other purple creme like it! If I haven’t thanked you for it already, I want to thank you again for the absolutely perfect purple!

    I am sorry that you had a bad year this year, and I do hope 2010 is much better. We all love you and your blog, and the positivity that is coming out in the comments just has to rub off!! {Hugs}

  16. amy says:

    This is the nail polish collection I am most excited about because all the colours are so gorgeous. Speaking of baby chicks, Lemon Fizz does remind me of Peeps!

  17. Megan says:

    I’ve had the opportunity to swatch Grape Pop and it’s an amazing purple creme. I don’t have Mismas, as I really haven’t been able to justify the cost, but it looks a tad lighter than GP. So while they aren’t exact dupes, it seems to me that Grape Pop is a perfect choice for someone that is lemming your RBL polish but unable to afford it.

    Hope you have a better 2010. I’ve had a crap year myself, though it is looking up, so I understand how you feel.

  18. SalvagedExpression says:

    Maybe try a layer of blackish glitter over the light purple. It would darken the fingers but keep the original color of the polish.
    I’ve had a bad professional year but an ok personal year. Either way I’m dying for 2010 in hope that it will be better!

  19. Ronnie says:

    Oh ladies, please believe you will LOVE Mismas!!! I love the entire blogger collection. Michelle, do you know how Happy Go Lucky compares to RBL Yellow Fever? 2009 was personally crappola in my household too, so I’ll pray for a much brighter 2010 for us both!

  20. Mc Huggs :) says:

    Hi Michelle:

    Nevertheless, this post is so bright and cheerful, especially how you swatch the OPI, China Glaze and your Mismas collection. They just seem to “pop” off the page. I love them all and any woman wearing these yellows would definitely stop traffic.

    Even the lavenders look so pretty and beautiful. I love the RBL Mismas, it’s so eye catching dark and beautiful purple. You can see a significant difference if you print out the page and compare the two, otherwise the differences are very small.

    BAD YEAR 2009???

    I am not sure what you mean by a “train wreck” of a (bad) year?

    Michelle-(and you can correct me if I am wrong as I don’t know all the details but)you launched your own signature collection with Manicurist to the stars for Barielle “Shades collection” of 12 different and gorgeous polishes.

    You appear as a regular columnist in Glam our magazine, you have also appeared in Allure and even been interviewed by Nails magazine for the UK, Supermodels actresses and woman (and even some men) are wearing your nail polishes.

    You have traveled to Nail Art and celebrity Nail Shows, Fashion shows all over the world. I think if you look back at 2009 and weigh the pros and cons you will come out ahead. Your fans love you and your web blog, and best of all, you put so much care, and compassion into your work, it really shows!

    Have a great weekend Michelle.

    (((((Love Michelle)))))

    Mc Huggs :)

  21. swedishfishing says:

    I love these! I’m sorry you’re having a rough time of things, but your blog redesign and the nail polishes you worked on this year were all awesome and you deserve to be super happy and proud of everything. Here’s hoping for a better 2010! In any case, I’m so glad you reviewed these with comparisons–I expected the yellows to be a pain, but I’ll buy them anyway because they’re so cute. I’m already planning on getting a Mismas backup on Tuesday, but I’m a sucker for purple cremes and this one will be mine too!

  22. Stef says:

    I love this collection! Darn it, now I’ll be spending my X-mas money on polish, I can’t think of anything I’d rather spend it on!!! 2009 has been a crappy year for everyone I think, 2010 has to be better!!!

  23. Sarah says:

    Love these. For some reason, I’m good with dealing with yellow polishes. 2009 was a horrible year for me, both workwise and personal life-wise. Here’s hoping to a better 2010 for all of us!

  24. Andi says:

    I’m really excited about this collection! Creams are my favorite and I like that they have bold colors and pastels.

  25. Danielle says:

    I saw a preview of this collection on another blog somewhere,
    and holy God, it’s pretty much my favorite collection ever. EVER.

    I just wished formula wasn’t such an issue. Sigh. When can we get OPI formula with China Glaze colors???

  26. Samantha says:

    Aww, babe, I sure hope you have a better 2010. I know I will. Anyway, I love the swatches of the yellows and the purples. I seem to have trouble with yellows (not just the application but also how they look on my nails against my skin), but purples and I get along nicely. Definitely having my eye on the purples since I don’t have any light purple cremes in my collection, but I’m not exactly needing Lemon Fizz or Happy Go Lucky.

  27. kirsten says:

    lemon fizz seems to be similar to sally hansen’s xtreme wear “Mellow Yellow”, no?

  28. Mel says:

    Lemon Fizz & Grape Pop are AWESOME! I definitely had the initial thought of spring pedicures as well for the yellow. Easter, like Peeps! :)

    Best wishes for a great 2010! My personal aspects have been great for this year, but next year could go a bit better professionally. Or freelance-y.

  29. Leigh says:

    How does Essie’s St. Lucia Lilac compare to Light As Air?

    • Olga says:

      Yes, it was my first thought while reading this review. I think they might be very alike. Orly’s BonBon can also be similar to Light As Air. I’d like to see them all compared.

  30. Arrianne says:

    Me confused. Scrangie says they were great to apply and you say they sucked. :( I wanna believe Scrangie, but I love these soooooo much. I can relate to you on being a trainwreck this year. Depression is a killer.

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      I saw another commenter mention Scrangie’s review. I’m just reporting my experience with them and for me they were streaky. As I noted in my response to the other commenter, the person behind the China Glaze Twitter account agreed with me but that doesn’t make us right. Just that we had similar experiences. I’m glad Scrangie loved the formula so much.

  31. Heidi says:

    are you sure this collection hits in January? I have it from an inside source that it won’t be available until later in the year… like around March.

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      Everything I’ve received directly from China Glaze says January but maybe production is behind. I can’t say for certain, it’s just what I’ve been told.

  32. Kylie Graves says:

    I am super confused about this collection now. I saw a post about this collection first on Scrangie’s site and her pics and comments about the formula on the pastels and yellows were all positive. I think she used the term “outstanding” to describe how well they applied, which got me really excited. I’m curious about the discrepency in reviews here. I am in no way about to say that either one of you are saying anything untrue about these polishes, but I read these blogs to get accurate information about a polish before I shell out the money to buy it. Could there be some difference in formulation between the bottles that you recieved and the bottles Scrangie recieved? Thank-you for all your reviews and comparisons, the work you do is thorough and extremely helpful to me in my decision making.
    Thanks again!

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      Hi Kylie! I haven’t read Scrangie’s review so I’m not really sure what she said but everyone’s experience will be different. For me, the pastels I’ve reviewed so far have been difficult to work with and when I posted my review, the person posting for the China Glaze account on Twitter agreed. I relate my experiences with the polish but for Scrangie, they may have been wonderful. I’m not really sure how to resolve that.

  33. melli says:

    Hey again Michelle,

    Just wanted to comment about application issues, as I agree with what you are saying. I think application is always a combination of things, like formula, what base coat you use, and whether you use thick or thin coats. Different batches of color can end up very different in consistency. A good example for me is the Sally Hansen prism line. I bought several bottles at one time (sign of a true addict :)), and each bottle had a different consistency.

    I think it is fair for everyone to decide based on all the evidence they can find. Mixed reviews are all about risk taking. If you are not into risks, then perhaps the pastels are a no go, especially if you are on a budget. If you are into risks, then give it a try…you could be pleasantly surprised – if not, then lesson learned, and you can always pass the bottle on to someone else with full information on your experience. I have friends who enjoy when I don’t like a formula. They take the hand me downs and never seem to complain about the consistency…I guess free polish is always good polish!

  34. PP says:

    Love the purple!

  35. ashley says:

    I’ll order Lemon Fizz but I don’t know how many yellows I have to buy before I realize that it’s just not my color.haha.

  36. Amanda says:

    Thanks for the great swatches. I have never had application luck with yellows – they are a nightmare! What is your best recommendation for an easy-to-apply yellow?

  37. PinkSugr says:

    Great post! I’m placing an order right now based on this review. Thanks a bunch. Keep up the good work. Your blog is one of my favs!

  38. Kelsey says:

    ChG Grape Pop looks a lot like Orly’s Charged Up. If you had to choose one of them, which would you choose, and why? (Assuming that cost is not a factor.) Thanks!

  39. Sidney says:

    Hi hi, i want to buy pastel yellow color like ChG Lemon Fizz, i’m just wondering which formula is better between OPI Banana Bandana and ChG Lemon Fizz? Bcoz i’m not that good in applying nail polishes, so i’m looking for nail polish that is easy to apply. Thanks alot.
    P.s. even Essie Mint Candy Apply is kind of hard to apply for me, i really need more practice.. ;)

  40. Sammy says:

    I have Grape Pop, Lemon Fizz, and Flyin’ High from this collection, and I must say that I am in love with all of them! The pain-in-the-bum thing about China Glaze is that it’s very hard to find in stores in Canada (I’ve only seen it once at a salon for purchase, and there was only like 5 colours), and I got those three as a gift.

    Lemon Fizz is my definite favourite though…I wanted a nice yellow polish. I initially picked up Sally Hansen Insta-Dri Lightening, but I don’t like it, I painted my toes and I felt like Barney (as in the dinosaur). Lemon Fizz is such a nice yellow, pale and pretty. And it certainly does make a cute pedicure! It is a bit streaky but with two coats I was fine.

  41. Silva says:

    I like Mismas more, blue-based colors don’t look as good one me.

  42. All Lacquered Up says:

    They were sent to me by the brand for review as I disclosed at the bottom of the post. You can view my full disclosure policy via the link in the menu bar.