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Fall 2011 Nail Polish Trend – Bold Beautiful Blues

Are we stuck in some kind of 2007 nail polish flashback? Did Chanel Blue Satin just launch? First we talked about grey nail polish, now we’re moving onto blue. Those of you who have been reading ALU since way back in its infancy will remember that blue and grey were big nail trends for Fall 2007 and as I approach my fifth year of blogging, it’s like it’s all coming full circle.

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The past couple years there has been a greater focus on greyed slate blues and teal but this time around we’re looking at a more true blue range that varies from denim to sapphire to indigo. And as brands have continued to evolve their mixing techniques we are being treated to more unique finishes and sparkle combinations than we’ve seen in the past.

The Bold & The Beautiful of Blues (Fall 2011 Release) – all polishes (except two noted below) are shown using two coats

From left to right - NARS Night Flight (bottom), OPI Road House Blues (top), Dior Denim (laying down), CND Midnight Sapphire, Color Club Blue-topia, Rescue Beauty Lounge Piu Mosso (laying down), Sparitual Blue Moon, Nubar Elegant Indigo, China Glaze Skyscraper

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China Glaze Skyscraper ($3, Head2ToeBeautyTransDesign. $6, Sally Beauty) is a blue ball of fun. It’s a semi-sheer glitter jelly polish with a softened midnight blue base. It reminds me of a twilight sky, before it darkens to an inky navy. It’s one of the two polishes that required three coats and that’s so that the glitter can be properly suspended. What intrigues me about this color is how the finish can look similar to a glass fleck at one angle and like a foil-ish metallic from another.

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I used my cell phone to take this shot so the color isn’t as accurate but I thought the slight bluriness showed the finish off well.

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CND Midnight Sapphire ($9, CND.com for locations or GoIndulge.com) is part of CND’s “Look” for Fall 2011 and it’s a densely pigmented creme that I showed you as part of my Cleveland Indians themed manicure. It applies beautifully and barely needs two coats. In fact I only used one coat in this shot and I like that it looks a bit lighter than the two coats I used in my Indians mani.

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Color Club Blue-topia ($8, ShopColorClub.com) is a deep navy jelly polish. As much I love the idea of jellies, they are hard to do with darker colors. They tend to be pretty streaky as was the case with Blue-topia. I used three coats with this one and it’s still pretty uneven.

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Dior Blue Denim ($22, Dior.com & Nordstrom stores) is part of the emerging sub-trend of denim inspired blues. This faded sapphire creme effortlessly blends comfort and chic. I love that even though it’s really pigmented, it has a jelly-like finish.

dior-blue-denim-nail-polish-swatch-fall-2011-sapphire-nail-trend

NARS Night Flight ($17, NARSCosmetics.com & NARS counters nationwide) is part of the Night series of sparkle polishes and in spite of its inky blue base, the tiny light blue and purple glitter particles lighten it up to a glorious mid-tone navy. You really have to see this one on the nail to appreciate the depth of its glitz.

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OPI Road House Blues ($8.50,OPI.com for locations) is a lush navy creme that leans towards indigo. Makes me think of blueberry juice. I have a LOT of navy cremes but none are quite like this one. OPI Sapphire in the Snow from Holiday ’09 looks downright purple next to it.

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Rescue Beauty Lounge Piu Mosso ($18, RescueBeauty.com) is an unusual flower combining fiery orange shimmer with a blackened blue base. As I mentioned in my initial review, it’s a challenge to bring a complimentary shimmer to the party without it affecting the base color but RBL’s Ji Baek achieved that with ease. It’s definitely one of my favorite fall colors this season.

rescue-beauty-lounge-piu-mosso-nail-polish-swatch-pre-fall-2011

Sparitual Blue Moon ($10, Sparitual.com & AveYou.com) is hands down my favorite of all the blues that have come out for fall. I wasn’t sure what to expect based on the bottle color. It looked pretty murky, more purple than blue, with this odd rose gold-ish flake glitter. On the nail it’s electric. Imagine Essie Aruba Blue being jolted to life with a defibrillator then injected with flakie goodness. The picture really does it no justice. I had this one for a full week and it looked smashing the full seven days. It pained me to take it off. In short… BUY THIS!!!

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The Old School Blues

You don’t have to buy new colors to be on trend, just shop your nail polish wardrobe for these classic sapphire blues.

Click the names to view swatches: ULTA Moody Blues, China Glaze Bermuda Breakaway, Barielle Berry Blue (laying down), Essence Just Rock It.

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Entity Blue (bottom), China Glaze Up All Night (top), Nubar Sapphire (bottom), NYC Skin Tight Denim Creme (top), OPI Yoga-ta Get This Blue, Sally Hansen Xtreme Wear Blue It, Zoya Indigo (laying across), Essie Aruba Blue (laying down), Sparitual Surreal

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Best colors to pair with Blue – Grey, camel, pumpkin, ruby, silver, gold

Thoughts on the resurgence of the blue nail color trend? Do you prefer straight-up blues to the greyed and green tinged tones? Which new colors do you plan to pick up? What are your favorite blue nail polishes?

Disclosure: Product samples were provided by reps for China Glaze, CND, Color Club, Dior, NARS, OPI, Rescue Beauty Lounge and Spatirual. For more info view my Disclosure Policy.

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There Are 65 Brilliant Comments

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  1. Ivy says:

    I love all of these. Blue is my favorite nail polish color. I love all of them, ranging from the grayish blue to the light blues to the deep blues. I even love the greenish ones! I always prefer blue over pink or red.
    I’m thinking of getting NARS Night Flight, but maybe even China Glaze Skyscraper.

    My favorite blue nail polish is either OPI Yoga-ta Get This Blue or Orly Snowcone.

  2. Chris says:

    I really love blues, so I’m glad they’re back. Of course, I have collected many shades of blue over the years. China Glaze Skyscraper is the only one I would get, as I do not own a similar color.

  3. Heather says:

    I like this blue trend! And all of the swatches above are quite pretty. I think I’ll stick to my own little collection of blues for the meantime though, which includes China Glaze’s “First Mate”, Zoya’s “Kotori” and “Cynthia” (which, I realize, is nearly black), and Deborah Lippmann’s “Across the Universe”. Although CND’s Midnight Sapphire is mighty tempting for me to look into a CND haul!

  4. Paillette says:

    Well, well, well!!!
    I must say, now I need that Sparitual!
    I also love that Dior! I love Dior anyhow and this is a gorgeous blue!

    I have Skyscraper, it’s perfect for layering over navy, too.
    :D

  5. Andrea says:

    I recently got OPI Road House Blues but haven’t had the chance to wear it yet, but I swatched it and liked it very much. I used to practically live in OPI Yoga-ta Get This Blue but haven’t worn it in a while because I’ve slowly gotten away from the tiny shimmer and more into cremes.

    I still want to buy China Glaze Bermuda Breakaway.

  6. jo says:

    LOVE Night Flight!

  7. Fingers says:

    I just discovered Zoya Ibiza. So pretty! I have most of the blues you’ve shown except the spiritual one! It’s going on my wish list!

  8. Scienter says:

    I love blue nail polish! I just got Essie Midnight Cami, which I really like, but Night Flight is my favorite.

  9. Medusa says:

    I really want the Dior Blue Denim color, but I hate to contradict you, because it’s not available on the dior.com or the Nordstrom web site. :( I guess I’ll just have to look on eBay?

  10. I so badly want Skyscraper and Piu Mosso, I really like dark blues probabaly one of my favourite colours along with purple. I have Nars Night Flight , glad I got it now.

  11. Ava says:

    I love Chanel Blue Satin but it’s so dark that it looks black and needs to be in the sun or other direct light to see the shimmer. Dior Tuxedo is a shade lighter, so is obviously blue under any lighting and the shimmer is apparent, yet it’s still office friendly.

    NARS Night Flight looks beautiful too.

  12. collier says:

    I’m usually all about the glitter (all of it! more! different sizes! contrasting colors!), but I love CG Bermuda Breakaway all on its own SO MUCH. It’s just an astoundingly perfect color.

  13. Julie says:

    I’m wearing Zoya Indigo right now, actually! I love the look of bold blues once in a while, but I think greyish and dusty blues suit me more.

  14. Amanda says:

    I LOVE butter london’s Blagger! Bright, in-your-face, true blue.

    I’m a sucker for blue nail polish (sometimes I feel like most of my collection is dominated by blues) so this will be a good season for me!

  15. FaithJ says:

    Fantastic post! I don’t like blue np on me, but I can appreciate the amazing colors. Thanks for the comparisons!

  16. Emmy says:

    I love blues! I love them all, and I picked up ChG Skyscraper today. I swatched it but I am sitting here instead of doing my nails. What is wrong with me!?

  17. no one really says:

    I love blue polish, it’s my favorite as well. OPI Ink and Toyland (can’t remember the whole name) are two I like, but I like the Nars one too. And I keep meaning to pick up Indigo and forgetting.

  18. Jaztee says:

    Blues are my favourite polish, so I really can’t pick which sub-colour is my favourite, though probably light grey blues (like CG Sea Spray) or navys.

  19. RHZ says:

    I can’t keep up! Military greens, sophisticated greys, and deep lucious blues- next thing I will be buying one of those “Helmers.”. My storage bin is spilling over! What’s next- keep it coming! :)

  20. RebeccaS says:

    I love blue polish; I think it probably makes up at least a third of my collection at this point! My favorite two blues so far are China Glaze Frostbite and OPI Swimsuit…Nailed It!

  21. RebeccaS says:

    (forgot this bit, whoops) Of the new polishes you swatched, I’m most interested in NARS Night Flight. The Sparitual is gorgeous but for some reason not seizing me.

  22. Frankenstyna says:

    I like the blues, but not so much on me. A medium dark slightly frosted blue (like Essie Aruba) reminds me of the Wet N’ Wild one I had back in 1996. Meh. I feel like a kid wearing it.
    On other people I love blues. Weird.

  23. Alli says:

    Sephora by OPI has a BEAUTIFUL blue in their latest collection called Countdown to the Kiss. A deep blue/navy base with a medium blue, almost turquoise-like shimmer throughout. I’ve had it on the last two days and have received numerous compliments!

  24. Stacey says:

    Here are some other good blues, RBL Dead Calm and OPI Russian Navy

  25. Shannon says:

    I love my Barielle Berry Blue. Wearing it right now!

  26. Des says:

    I love my Essie Aruba Blue all year ’round! Dark and jewel toned enough for cooler weather, yet bright enough for the warmer months.

  27. Lauren says:

    NARS Night Flight is really pretty!

  28. Emily says:

    I have a Wet and Wild Polish that looks similar to the NARS one, I think it’s called Blue Moon.

  29. I have Zoya Indigo, and am waiting on the Nubar Jeans collection (tomorrow!! I’m going to pounce on the mailman LOL) I also have a GG linear holo dark blue.

    I think it’s a good solid color to have…I do lean more towards peacock blue/purpled blues rather than straight on blue.

  30. Michelle says:

    I own China Glaze Skyscraper and the glitter in sunlight stops me in my tracks every time (OK, I do have ADD). I’m wearing China Glaze Up All Night right now with a Hindi pattern on both ring fingers; LOVE IT! Which collection did UAN come from? I can’t believe I didn’t see it sooner.

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      I know UAN was part of the Patent Leather in the City collection that included On The Prowl, Sexy in the City, Seduce Me, Liquid Leather and Paint The Town Red. For some reason I think it was originally released before that and it was just being re-promoted in that collection. I could be wrong though. It was one of the two shimmers in the collection.

  31. Jenne says:

    I love this nail polish. O.P.I. is my favorite brand, it’s stays on for so long before chipping it’s great. This color is the perfect blue. I’ve had many compliments.

  32. Emma says:

    Just wondering if you were planning on doing a full review of the OPI Muppets collection coming up? Would love to hear your thoughts/see pictures!

    • All Lacquered Up says:

      I do plan to review them but I havn’t received them. Even though they are on shelves, OPI is delayed in sending them to me. Don’t know why

  33. Chelsea says:

    I’m wearing Butter London Victoriana right now, and even though it pulls a little green/teal I swear its more on point for stone washed denim then most of the other denim collections that have come out this year. All these blues coming out are great! I’m really digging the RBL one. Gotta love those funky colors.

  34. Love your post – very thorough! I have a few of the new and the old and can’t wait to pull them out this fall. :)

  35. Stephanie says:

    I love blues of any sort. Although I tend to lean towards the darker blues. These are great colors. There are several I need to add to my collecion. :)

  36. Mel says:

    Um, yep — totally going to find and buy that CND color. LOVE IT!

  37. More of a fan of the grays over the blues. Although I do like the blues…who am I fooling..I love almost all nail polish.

  38. Kat says:

    I picked up OPI’s “Road House Blues” and I loved the results. I was looking for a true navy blue cream and this one met my needs perfectly. Given there are so many variants of navy blue available, I’ve never owned a blue polish quite like this one which came as a surprise to me.

  39. Jackie S. says:

    I love blues, good posts. :)

    I actually returned NARS Night Flight, the color just didn’t stand-out enough for me to justify the price tag.

  40. Alicia says:

    Blue is my favorite color, but just not in my nail polish! I have long nails so I feel bright blues look a little tacky on me, but dark, rich blues I feel I can pull off. I love Essie’s Midnight Cami… especially in sun when the shimmer stands out.

    I’m convinced with your post I need RBL Piu Mosso and a deep sapphire creme, something a bit brighter than CND Midnight Sapphire.

  41. Renee says:

    Too bad Essie doesn’t make Starry, Starry Night any longer. It was a knock-off of a Chanel color (can’t recall the name) back in 1997 or 1998. A deep, dark blue with silver sparkle. A perfect holiday color! The closest one shown being China Glaze “Skyscraper”.

  42. allison says:

    So I like the rescue beauty blue. I love the little hints of sparkle. but i always do!

  43. Raye says:

    Blues and teals are my favorite nail polish color. Also, when is the 365 coming back? I miss it…

  44. Kinsey says:

    I LOVE blue polish! I’m happy to know it’s a trend so I have an excuse to wear it more ;]

  45. Reena says:

    Midnight Sapphire is the same shade as my jeans! lol!!! I love Blue! It always goes well against my skin tone. :)

  46. Brigid Kim says:

    If I see unkempt nails, I think the rest of your life is just as messy. I’m excited to try the “blues.” I might save them for early winter because I already have my fall line-up. Any news on 365??

  47. Sarah says:

    Really surprised to see Orly Royal Navy and Essie Mesmerize not mentioned. Are they just in the wrong vein of blue? They are my favorite bright blues.

  48. Mizzy says:

    Your fans miss you! We hope all is well :)

    Are you going to be returning to posting regularly soon?

    All the best to you.

  49. Jennybee says:

    I bought Opi Roadhouse blues from Ulta and it looks nothing like the display sample or your nails :( bummer! It’s super dark, still pretty but darker than I was hoping for. Thank you for all your reviews!

  50. Nagem says:

    I have really enjoyed your posts and I miss them! Where have they gone? What happened to your 365′s? I know you have a life but I must admit to being very disappointed… It’s been 10 days since your last post! Come back!!

  51. TLM says:

    I’m kinda surprised to see dark navys with sparkle back again, which to me is so 4-5 years ago? I just gave away what was left of my Revlon Midnight Affair, since I hadn’t used it in forever. In its heyday, I did use it quite a bit, and there was very little left.

    These days I have been buying brighter creme blues like Fashion Bug’s dark denim, and L.A. Colors’ Color Craze in Atomic and Static Electricity (http://www.cherryculture.com).

  52. TLM says:

    I should say that I’m a contrarian at heart, which means I don’t believe “summer” colors should only be worn in summer, and dark colors only in winter. To that end, I’m currently wearing Sinful Colors’ Pull Over (same family as OPI’s “The IT Color” yellow), which goes great with grey and navy clothing.

  53. Dina says:

    I have a question about the Dior Blue Denim – the swatch looks pretty close to Essie’s Mesmerize and Illamasqua’s Force…would you say that they’re pretty much the same color? I wouldn’t call an Illamasqua polish a dupe exactly, considering how pricey they are ($34!), but at $7-8, Force definitely seems like it could be one!

  54. Cotton Candy says:

    CND Midnight Sapphire is so pretty!
    I also love NARS Night Flight and Rescue Beauty Lounge Piu Mosso !!! so so gorgeous! thanks for this nice review!

  55. Kraftygurl says:

    Not a huge fan of blue nail polish, but I think I may try Sparitual Blue Moon.

  56. N says:

    Blue-topia looks like a dupe of one of my favourites: Inkheart from NYX!

  57. RS says:

    I love coloured nails – particularly navy blue but have done them green, black and red too.

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