China Glaze Turned Up Turquoise nail polish review

Have you cottoned onto the fact that I like turquoise – a lot – yet? It should come as no surprise then that, after seeing pictures of China Glaze’s Turned Up Turquoise on some blogs, I just knew I had to claim that turquoise for my own too!

Part of the Summer 2008 Ink Collection, which were somewhat bizarrely based on the hues of tattoos, it proved pretty difficult to track down – but as you know with me, the journey is half of the fun… or something like that (see tracking down Gosh Cosmetics, flakies and even Waterball Bay for further evidence!). The whole collection is made up of bright buzzing neons that practically jolt you to attention and Turned Up Turquoise is no exception. It’s an intense saturated turquoise colour that floods the senses with its zing. So far, so amazing.

But unlike Essie’s Turquoise & Caicos, I don’t think I can describe this as true turquoise. It’s simply not content to be just one colour! Turned Up Turquoise is a bit of a tropical chameleon in a way that I don’t think most Internet swatches have shown. Sometimes, it really would look like the perfect turquoise adrenaline rush; other times, it leaned massively towards a mouth-watering candy-coated green. All the pictures on this page were taken in daylight (apart from one I’ll mention later), with only minor adjustments to hand positions and the natural variations of sunlight and shade to blame for how differently they all turned out!

The greenest shades remind me of the most vibrant green of cartoon palm trees whilst the most truly turquoise make me think of the clearest, jewel-like tropical oceans. Either way, they’re all violently vivid, although some seem to have had a heftier dose of lime juice than others. As you may guess, my favourite hue is the most traditionally turquoise one… but to guarantee that colour, you have to stay in the brightest sunlight or the whitest lighting possible at all times!

Like many neons, Turned Up Turquoise dries to a semi-matte finish. I think it might look even more awesome glossy, but the matte effect is stopped from falling flat by a slight shimmer that’s been thrown into the mix too. It proves somewhat elusive to catch in photos; the slightly blurry one below taken under artificial light comes closest to capturing the subtle glow that stops it from looking chalky and dull.

Application-wise, I found it a little difficult to work with simply because, like many mattes, it dries quickly. Unlike all those OPI Suedes that I’ve loved, Turned Up Turquoise seems to have a thicker consistency that meant it was difficult to make perfect, without visible brush-strokes, in the short time before the lacquer started setting. Even though the colour was so strikingly strong and intensely-pigmented to only require one coat for opaque coverage in a colour that looked exactly like it did in the bottle, you might need to go for two just to try and clean things up a bit. But like the other matte finishes I’ve tried, this didn’t wear too well, with chips appearing after just one or two days.

Turned Up Turquoise does have its faults, but for that extreme rich colour pay-off, it’s definitely worth it. When it does decide to give you a glimpse of its turquoise side, it’s a turquoise so eye-poppingly amped up to the max that you’re shocked into submission, yet without appearing garishly fluorescent. And hey, those green shades aren’t too shabby either, right?

Looks good with: neons, high contrast, high NRG
Drying time: <2 mins
Coats required: 1-2
Chips: 1-2 days

China Glaze Turned Up Turquoise nail polish, Summer 2008 Ink Collection, $160, Nails From The Heart, Admiralty Centre

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