I anticipate nothing more in the nail world than Autumn collections, especially from my favorite polish brand, so I'm ecstatic to show you China Glaze's Fall collection for 2011. Autumn is my favorite season; the smells and sounds, the temperature, the associations with new school clothes and new beginnings from my childhood... All of it gives me a huge boost in mood and I live for it every year. When Fall nail collections come out, usually in Summer, it gives me a little of that feeling in advance. It's like getting two Falls! So I'm very excited about this collection. It's got a very different feel than last year's Vintage Vixen collection which was full of complex shimmers and jeweltones. Metro is largely cremes, and most are very unique and range from muted to vibrant giving a nice mix that will enable everyone to find something they like.
Trendsetter: This is described by China Glaze as a mustard yellow but it's definitely got a lot of green in it. The shimmer in it reminds me of the gold shimmer in Classic Camel from Vintage Vixens; it's sort of irregularly shaped, but fine and very beautiful. The color you may be able to take or leave. It's very unique and I think it'll be great for nail art designs, but for my particular skin it doesn't work as well as I hoped it would. It pulls a bit of red out in my skin which isn't attractive. Overall, it's very unique and a very pretty color, and while it doesn't work well for me, it will certainly work for someone else. **** 4 stars.
Westside Warrior: This is unbelievable! It's described as camo green and it is definitely that. In some lights I'd call it a neutral olive, if that's possible. It applies perfectly and is streak-free and gives full coverage in two coats. I don't have anything like this. I have a couple polishes in the same family, Essie Sew Psyched and Sephora by OPI Caught with My Khakis Down, but neither have the punch on the nail that this does. It's a very solid color, and it's a bit dusty, but also just has a lot of pop. It's hard to explain, but it's really a great polish. **** 5 stars.
Concrete Catwalk: This is the darkest grey I've seen that doesn't border uncomfortably close to black. There isn't a whole lot of a blue undertone so even warm skinned people could pull this off. It's very clearly grey but has all the impact of black. The all the cremes in this collection it applies perfectly in two coats. Very nice color, very nice application and definitely worth adding to your stash. ***** 5 stars.
Street Chic: This isn't like all the other taupes I've got. I love these types of shades, but the majority of the ones I have have a purple undertone whereas this one has a chocolatey undertone. It reminds me of a mix between China Glaze Chocodisiac and China Glaze Below Deck. It applies wonderfully in two coats, and the color is really very nice. It's a cozy color, I don't know how else to describe it. *****5 stars.
Brownstone: This was one of the very difficult ones to photograph. It's a bit darker and more brown that these photos show, but this is as close as I could get to the real color. It's a brick brown creme, and like the other cremes is a perfect formula. Applies great, and is super pigmented. It's not my favorite color on my skin, honestly, but I can appreciate it's uniqueness. There are a lot of browns out there and a lot of brick reds, but this is a marriage of the two and you don't see a lot of these. It does make a bit of a statement, though I can't really describe what that is. I think that the color in and of itself is very pretty and I suspect as Fall comes closer I'll revisit this polish and give it a try as a full mani. **** 4 stars.
Traffic Jam: This was, by far, the hardest to photograph of the bunch. It's one of my very favorites too, so I was doubly upset by that. This reminds me a lot of OPI Outback Aphrodisiac in that it's this juicy boysenberry color with a lot of punch. At first glance you expect it to be subdued, but it's very vivid. It's named very aptly as Jam is such a great way to describe it. It doesn't look at all like any jam I've seen, of course, but it brings to mind all manner of juicy delicious things. It's not necessarily the most unique in the collection, and I didn't expect a pinky color to be one of my favorites from this Fall collection, but I love it. It applies perfectly and is lovely in every way. ***** 5 stars.
Loft-y Ambitions: This polish reminds me an awful lot of OPI Black Magic Mountain. It's not quite dark enough to be a dupe, but it is definitely in the same family. Especially because the shimmer is exactly the same. It actually is like a 50/50 mix of BMM and OPI Bastille My Heart. Either way it's really nice. It's a black cherry shade with candy ribbon shimmer. It applies nearly the same as the cremes; 2 coats is perfection. I don't think it's super unique, but it's very sophisticated and pretty, and the understated shimmer really gives it some depth. *** 3 stars.
City Siren: This is a dusty crimson creme. It's very chic and glossy, has great application and just overall looks very polished and nice, but it's not very unique. I have a couple polishes that are very similar, but if you don't have anything like it and need a slightly brick-tinged dark crimson creme, this is a solid choice due to it's excellent texture and application. ***3 stars.
Urban-Night: This is a deep plum creme. The first coat leans really red, but two coats makes it a bit more neutral. It's similar to Orly Plum Noir, but is less red/warm. It's not a true deep purple, but it's a close a dark plum can come with just that small tinge of red. It applies just like the other cremes in the Metro collection, and is really beautiful. Surprisingly I find it pretty unique in my stash, and it will definitely be seeing some use this Fall. ***** 5 stars.
Midtown Magic: Wow, this one is a stunner. It's somewhat similar in idea to OPI DS Mystery, but Mystery is gorgeous in the bottle but it doesn't really translate on the nail. Mystery is too goopy and opaque to let the golden shimmer shine when outside the bottle. Midtown Magic accomplishes this feat beautifully. It's a deep eggplant (Very LPAD-esque) with just a ton of golden micro-glitter. The gold has an almost antiqued green cast to it in some lights too which just adds to it. Two coats is ideal for full coverage and the application is great. Very nice polish for Fall, and a real standout in this collection. ***** 5 stars.
Skyscraper: Photos do this polish no justice; it glistens like new snow. The color is a denim blue jelly with tons of silver microglitter. It's like the blue version of Mistletoe Kisses from China Glaze Holiday '10, except the glitter seems even smaller and the coverage of the base color is much more pigmented. A surprising bonus is that this is glitter comes the closest to drying down smooth that I've ever seen a glitter polish come. One coat of topcoat is enough with this one, it really shocked me. The photos are dry polish with no top coat and you can see there is minimal grit in the finish. Overall this is a wonderful polish with loads of twinkle. It'll be great for Winter also! ***** 5 stars.
CG in the City: Meh. Honestly this is alright. It's like the glitter version of those purple taupes we all love so well, but it's very very sheer, and dries just as gritty as any other glitter; not at all like Skyscraper. It would look great layered over a purple taupe or even a deep purple like Urban-Night from this collection, but as a stand-alone polish, it's not much to write home about. ** 2 stars.
Overall, This collection is a great example of a Fall collection. Metro is heavy on cremes and subtle shimmers, but heavy on unique shades that range from dusy to vivid. Unique cremes are one of the things China Glaze does best, so I'm happy to see there are several this time around. I'm already dying for the first of the crisp Fall weather after swatching these.
So what do you guys think? Which ones catch your eye? Which do you think are unique and which do you think you can pass on?
Disclosures: The product samples reviewed in this post were received by PR for review consideration. Everything I review is put through the same types of testing, and is reviewed fairly, no matter how I come by the products. I don't "sell" products to my readers or viewers, I just want to help you make informed decisions when you research your beauty choices, and share my views on products I like and dislike with you. See the Disclosures page at the top of the page for more.