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Chanel Vibrato and Fortissimo – Blue Rhythm de Chanel

By on August 31, 2015
in Blue, Chanel, Fall 2015
Chanel Vibrato and Fortissimo - Blue Rhythm

Chanel Vibrato and Fortissimo – Blue Rhythm

Even though I’m known for my love of all things green, I have a serious weakness for blue polish. It’s been eclipsing my affection for green lately, but given that I have more blue nail polishes than any other color, it takes a lot to get me truly excited.

The Chanel Blue Rhythm collection has had my interest piqued for months after seeing Vibrato and Fortissimo on a few international blogs. Well, the collection finally hit my doorstep, and I couldn’t wait to share it with you.

Formula & Application

Chanel Le Vernis is 5-Free (free of DBP, Toluene, Formaldehyde, Formaldehyde Resin and Camphor). The signature square glass bottles are topped with a black square outer cap that is removed to reveal a stubby, round, ribbed inner cap. The brush is round, medium in length and width and reminds me of the old OPI brushes. It is very flexible, giving the ability to get at every corner of the nail.

Both of these colors apply very differently so I’m going to address that below.

Chanel Fortissimo and Vibrato Swatches

Chanel Fortissimo is a dark denim navy with that signature Chanel subtle, tonal shimmer. In direct light, as seen here, the shimmer peeks out, but in indirect lighting it looks like a navy creme with a lot of depth. None of my navy blues are quite like this. Most are darker; Chanel Blue Satin, Essie Midnight Cami, Essie Style Cartel, Zoya Ibiza. The rest are tonally different; OPI Russian Navy (purple), Lancome Indigo Paris (brighter).

Chanel Fortissimo swatch - Blue Rhythm

Chanel Fortissimo

The issue I have is with application. I’ve applied this four times now and can’t avoid bubbles. I don’t know what’s going on. That and the formula feels kind of stringy. When I apply it super thin, to avoid bubbles, it’s patchy. When I use a heavier hand, the bubbles are OUT OF CONTROL! What you see below is three super thin coats, dried for a few minutes, before applying HK Girl Top Coat. There are still minuscule bubbles, but you have to look for them.

Chanel Fortissimo comparison swatch

Chanel Fortissimo comparison

Chanel Fortissimo comparison swatch

Chanel Fortissimo comparison

Chanel Vibrato is a hard color to describe. It’s darker than an electric blue or cobalt, yet more vibrant than a navy or denim. Maybe royal blue works for this creamy shade since it’s got a hint of purple to it. Whatever you call it, IT’S AMAZING! Like I said, I own a lot of blues and Dior Sailor is the only polish that comes close, though Vibrato is just slightly brighter. If you own Sailor you can skip Vibrato, but if you don’t, GET ON IT!

Chanel Vibrato swatch - Blue Rhythm

Chanel Vibrato

I mean, I’m going to make a bold statement and say Vibrato is better than Nails Inc Baker St. I know, crazy talk, but seriously, this polish is flawless. Smooth, glossy, pigmented (two coats), and NO STAINING. Too many shouty capitals, but that’s how much I feel about this color. I’ve been wearing it since it arrived and do not want to take it off. In fact, I fully intend to reapply Vibrato for the coming weekend and take it to my next pedicure. If Vibrato was on Tinder, I would totally swipe right.

Chanel Vibrato comparison swatch

Chanel Vibrato comparison

Someone on Instagram asked if Vibrato is better than all the blues that ever existed. I don’t know if that was serious or sarcastic, because Chanel is so expensive, but it just may be. At least it is for me right now.

Chanel Vibrato comparison swatch

Chanel Vibrato comparison

Note: I originally tried both colors with Chanel’s Le Top Coat and cried. It looked gloriously glossy for about three minutes and then came all the bubbles. So many bubbles. And even though it says “quick dry” on the bottle, I smudged Vibrato fifteen minutes later. I ended up going out with bubbled nails, because no time, and tried again the next day, being even more careful. Same result. I’ve been hearing from others, including pros, that they’ve had similar experiences. Moral of the story, do not buy Le Top Coat.

Chanel Vibrato comparison swatch

Chanel Vibrato comparison

Bottom Line: Unless this is the first sentence you are reading in this post, you already know that I’m calling Vibrato a must-have. I’m considering buying a back-up. It’s in strong contention for my favorite fall color. Since it’s not a summer bright, it’s a perfect transition shade. Hell, it’s perfect year round. Fortissimo, on the other hand, get’s a big thumbs down. The formula is a disaster, and given Chanel’s price that’s unacceptable.

Chanel Vibrato and Fortissimo are available now at Chanel counters nationwide and online at, and Chanel nail polish retails for $27/ea.

Anyone else going crazy for Vibrato? Are you planning to splurge on a bottle? What is your all-time favorite blue?

Disclosure: Product samples were provided by reps for Chanel. 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 25 Brilliant Comments

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  1. Katherine says:

    To be honest I think I prefer Lancome Indigo Paris to the Chanel Fortissimo. I absolutely love Vibrato and I’m going to pick it up soon!

  2. Lisa N. says:

    Both are very nice blues!

  3. RebeccaS says:

    My all-time favorite blue is probably China Glaze Frostbite! But man, I am seeeeeriously tempted by Vibrato. *steeples fingers*

  4. mashalaz says:

    Thanks for comparing Verbrato with JINsoon Cool Blue. It was my very first question–how similar are they– upon seeing Verbrato. They are different. I love Cool Blue but may have to spring for Verbrato.

  5. jdm says:

    How does Vibrato stack up against RBL IKB: 2012? I need a good Yves Klein Blue polish for Fall and this Chanel one could be it (especially since I missed out on the RBL one!)

  6. flipflopgal says:

    Both are very pretty. Too bad about the formula issues with Fortissimo. I just put on Sinful Colors Endless Blue, I wonder how it compares to Vibrato. Based on a quick Google search and holding my fingers up to the screen, they look like they could be pretty similar (thankfully for me, ’cause tbh, Chanel is not exactly in my budget. I just admire from afar) ;) Now if only similar polishes could be found for some of my other Chanel lemmings! (Taboo, anyone?) Haha!

    • Lizzie R says:

      Kiko has a Taboo dupe. Try Kiko 497, I think it’s similar enough and at €1,90 you can’t beat the price.

  7. Viktoria says:

    Oh man these are beautiful. I love Vibrato. Not sure if I will splurge and buy it (after all, I have a KBShimmer that was a total dupe to Dior Sailor, so it must be very close to Vibrato, too), but I still admire its beauty. And I think it’s great for Chanel to add this cobalt blue to their line-up.

  8. Lou says:

    I have them both and Vibrato is my favourite – I’ve had it on my fingers and toes numerous times already. Such a great shade!

  9. Rachel B says:

    Cirque has a blue that is pretty amazing. It’s called NYFW. I wonder how that compares to Vibrato.

  10. Beth says:

    How does Vibrato compare to YSL Majorelle Bleu or Essie Butler, Please? Your swatches are gorgeous but really disappointed about Fortissimo!

  11. Maria says:

    Fortissimo looks absolutely gorgeous, all grown up and sophisticated. Sorry to hear the quality is questionable. Vibrato looks very middle school to me.
    I guess I’ll have to test them both. Thanks for posting, Michelle.

  12. Rebecca says:

    Vibrato reminds me of CG Frostbite. Great comparisons with all the other colors!

  13. I think Vibrato is going to be my first CHANEL polish ever. I am in love!!!

  14. Lauren says:

    How does it compare to kb shimmer low & be bold?

  15. Sylvie says:

    How does vibrato compare to Revlon Royal? I know Royal is a jelly but it goes fully opaque. Do you think they can pass as dupes?

  16. JDV says:

    Vibrato applied like a dream, it’s a complete winner!

  17. Camila says:

    Thank goodness, I read this post before going into store! I was seriously thinking of buying Chanel Fortissimo because I truly love the color. But if the quality is so poor, guess I will return to my proven Dior. Feel kind of sad right now, because it’s actually the first time I’ve decided to try Chanel nail polish… but still thank you for the post, you’ve saved me from even bigger disappointment!