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Essie Neon 2015 Swatches & Review

By on May 13, 2015
in Blue, Essie, Green, Pink, Purple, Summer 2015, Teal
Essie Neon 2015 review via @alllacqueredup

Essie Neon 2015

Essie and China Glaze must be partying together, for they both used music culture as inspiration for summer collections. Whereas the China Glaze Electric Nights collection pays homage to EDM, the Essie Neon 2015 colors have a music festival theme. And like last year’s neons, these are bright but not truly fluorescent. They really should name them “brights.”

Formula & Application

Essie nail polish is 3-Free (Formaldehyde, Toluene, DBP). The square bottles are embossed with the Essie logo and the smooth plastic caps include an embossed ‘e’ on top. Bottles at mass retailers have stickers rather than embossing on the bottle. The brushes are thin, round and shorter than most. The bristles are very flexible, allowing you to easily fan out the brush to cover your nail width.

While all the polishes have that typical Essie watery, squishy feel during application, the opacity, finish and ease of leveling differed, so I’m going to address that individually below. Note: None of them played well with my swatching base coat, China Glaze Calcium Gel Fortifier. When I applied them to a bare nail or CND Stickey, things went swimmingly.

Essie Neon 2015 Swatches

Essie All Access Pass is a vivid indigo creme. It’s the darkest and most purple of the recent Essie indigo shades (Suite Retreat and Chills & Thrills). It’s a bit sheer so I needed three coats, and leveling was a bit of an issue. It didn’t level out on its own, so even with top coat it’s not perfectly smooth. It’s a lot like Chills & Thrills in that way.

Essie All Access Pass swatch - Neon 2015 via @alllacqueredup

Essie All Access Pass

Essie All Access Pass swatch comparison - Neon 2015 via @alllacqueredup

Essie All Access Pass comparison

Essie Coacha’bella is a hot pink creme. It leans a bit fuchsia, especially when compared to the warmer-toned Essie Too Taboo. The formula on this one is similar to All Access Pass in that I needed three coats and it didn’t level well. It dries satin, like a traditional neon, which are known to be lumpy. That being said, it looks decent with top coat.

Essie Coacha'bella swatch - Neon 2015 via @alllacqueredup

Essie Coacha’bella

Essie Coacha'bella swatch comparison - Neon 2015 via @alllacqueredup

Essie Coacha’bella comparison

Essie Groove is in the Heart is an electrified baby pink. It’s almost neon, and applies/behaves as such. It doesn’t dry satin, but it’s patchy and challenging to work with. Even after three coats, I could see issues and had to be very careful about not dragging the polish into lumps near my tips. It’s not as peachy as China Glaze Feel the Breeze, but they’re very close in color.

Essie Groove is in the Heart swatch - Neon 2015 via @alllacqueredup

Essie Groove is in the Heart

Essie Groove is in the Heart comparison swatch - Neon 2015 via @alllacqueredup

Essie Groove is in the Heart comparison

Essie Make Some Noise is a bright cyan creme. To me, it’s like Deborah Lippmann Video Killed The Radio Star got an electric shock. They’re similar in hue but Make Some Noise is so much brighter. The formula on this one is perfect. Glossy, self-leveling and opaque in two coats. It’s like nothing I own. Love! p.s. This color is really hard to photograph. It’s even more saturated in person. Note: This one stains

Essie Make Some Noise swatch  - Neon 2015 via @alllacqueredup

Essie Make Some Noise

Essie Make Some Noise comparison swatch  - Neon 2015 via @alllacqueredup

Essie Make Some Noise comparison

Essie Melody Maker is a vivid teal green that borders on emerald. Like Make Some Noise, the formula is stellar, requiring only two coats. If Essie Ruffles & Feathers was too warm/yellow for you, try Melody Maker. They have the same depth of color with their undertone as the differentiation. Also, there are more ghosts of Deborah Lippmann’s 80s Rewind collection here, with Melody Maker being a brighter take on DL She Drives Me Crazy.

Essie Melody Maker swatch - Neon 2015 via @alllacqueredup

Essie Melody Maker

Essie Melody Maker comparison swatch - Neon 2015 via @alllacqueredup

Essie Melody Maker comparison

Essie Vibrant Vibes should be renamed, “You Better Work,” because that’s what you have to do to apply this neon lime green creme. I had problems similar to GiitH, above, in that it was lumpy, streaky, and needed a lot of finesse to look presentable. This is three coats, with the third coat being pretty heavy, and the result of the brush barely touching the surface. It’s considerably lighter than Essie Vices Versa, and more pigmented, and more green than China Glaze Grass is Lime Greener and Be More Pacific.

Essie Vibrant Vibes swatch - Neon 2015 via @alllacqueredup

Essie Vibrant Vibes

Essie Vibrant Vibes comparison swatch - Neon 2015 via @alllacqueredup

Essie Vibrant Vibes comparison

Essie Neon 2015 swatches via @alllacqueredup

Essie Neon 2015 swatches

Bottom Line: Let’s start with the good. Make Some Noise and Melody Maker are phenom with Make Some Noise getting my vote for best of the collection due to its stunning and unique color. Coacha’bella and All Access Pass are pretty, but their less-than-perfect formulas are a downside. Vibrant Vibes and Groove is in the Heart are kind of nightmares to work with. If I never have to apply them again, it will be too soon.

The Essie Neon 2015 collection officially launches in June 2015 at salons and mass retailers nationwide, including Target and ULTA. You can find Essie online at,,,, and Essie nail polish retails for $8.50/ea.

Are you feeling these new neons/brights? Do you like them better than last year’s Too Taboo collection? Which ones are you planning to pick up?

Disclosure: Product samples were provided by reps for Essie. Affiliate links appear in this post. When you purchase through an affiliate link, you help support this site. For more info view my Disclosure Policy
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There Are 35 Brilliant Comments

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  1. Michelle H. says:

    Michelle, do you know why some polishes are super easy to put on and why some streak or lump? I thought it might be due to the colors, but it seems like it might be the base the manufacturers use when creating the polish. Is there any easy way to tell what base they are using? I’ve had so many polishes that look great in the bottle, but are a nightmare to put on. Or is there some other secret that I’m missing out on?

    • Hi Michelle! Since I’m not a chemist it’s hard to really pinpoint, but I’m sure there are a number of factors that contribute to ease of application. I believe most brands have proprietary formulas, but they differ depending on the type of color they are trying to make. I’ve had good and bad polishes from the same brandk, so I think what pigment and base are used determines that.

  2. Garland Russell says:

    I definitely like “All Access Pass,” “Coacha’bella,” “Make Some Noise,” & “Melody Maker.” They’re all attractive looking!

  3. Amanda says:

    I think as a whole collection, I liked Too Taboo better. BUT, I am liking the look of Make Some Noise a LOT. Did it or Melody Maker have any staining problems?

    • Thank you for asking Amanda. I completely forgot about the staining. Yes, Make Some Noise did stain but I was able to get rid of it right away with Orly Cutique. Editing the post to add that now.

  4. Lisa N. says:

    These look good.

  5. Cindi says:

    I love all the colors but I already have “close enoughs” in my stash. I like that you do these comparison posts with similar colors as I can see how close mine are and then determine if I really need that new shade. I do like Vibrant Vibes as it leans more green than yellow. I might need that one at least.

    • I know how you feel, Cindi. I get so excited about new polishes in the shades I like, and then they end up being so close to the rest that only I can tell them apart.

  6. Clodia says:

    beautiful colors

  7. Leah says:

    I am going to have to be on the hunt! Thanks for the review!

  8. kel says:

    my favs are the ones you say are hard to work with. bleah!

  9. A says:

    I’d *love* to see a comparison between essie Groove Is In The Heart to Deborah Lippmann Groove Is In The Heart, from Spring 2013…

    • Hi A! Sorry, I include comparisons to the colors that are closest. Unfortunately, I don’t have time to add comparisons images after the post is published. I would never get any new posts up if I did, ha!

  10. I can’t wait to swatch these!!! I’m stalking my local beauty supply store. Even though you mentioned the formulas on some are not ideal, there is something about essie that I just must-have!!! I love doing comparisons too, they are so helpful. Thanks for this post… can’t wait to get mine :)

  11. Suehey says:

    Love your review! I like this color, but looks like others collections. And yes, I think they really should name them brights. I only had on mind 2; Groove is in the Heart & Vibrant vibes. But, I think I only gonna buy Vibrant Vibes, cause I have Feel the Breeze. Thank you for your review!!!

  12. Do you save the colors/formulas you didn’t care for for giveaways? *leans in listening carefully*

    • Ha! I don’t include them in giveaways because they are used. I either donate the shades I purge, or use them for a local sale, with all the funds raised going to a charity.

      • Amanda says:

        Hey, that is AWESOME Michelle! Love that you do a local sale and give to a charity!!

  13. Viktoria says:

    Oh what a pity the coral and the lime have tricky formulas! The colors are super lovely.

  14. Michelle, essie just posted on their Instagram that this collection will be sold exclusively at Target, but you mentioned they will be sold at mass retailers. Do you know anything about the exclusivity?

  15. becci says:

    I wonder if these will make it to the uk, I might have to try ebay for cocha belle, it’s very pretty and I have nothing quite like it. Essie do seem to be doing much prettier collections than other brands at the minute, I’ve found myself buying from previous years collections because there is nothing that attracts me. There were only two from opi that I have purchased and i normally go mad for them. Guess I am stocking up on Essie for now.

  16. I loved all of them, I can’t choose only one fovorite!!