Thursday, January 6th, 2011


China Glaze Anchors Away Collection

China Glaze Anchors Away: Part 1

China Glaze’s nautical-inspired collection consists of twelve new shades, and this post features these six:  Ahoy! (delightfully intense pink that flashes with reflective glitter), Below Deck (flirty mix of taupe and violet), First Mate (sophisticated and rich navy creme), Hey Sailor (vibrant creme red), Knotty (micro-particle beige shimmer), and Life Preserver (highly pigmented and luxurious poppy creme).

Edited @ 7:12 AM PST:  Hey Sailor images should show now!

  • Ahoy! is raspberry pink with flecks of subtle gold and ruby sparkle. In the promo photos, this shade looked a lot like Strawberry Fields, but Ahoy! is much, much darker; redder, too, and the gold is less noticeable. I used three coats.
  • Below Deck is a grayed mauve with a cream finish. I used two coats. It is a shade darker and more neutral than MAC Cool Reserve.
  • First Mate is a rich, luxurious navy blue cream. I did two coats, but you could almost get away with one–it’s that pigmented. I would compare First Mate to Rescue Beauty Lounge’s Dead Calm, which is perhaps only a smidgen darker.
  • Hey Sailor is a poppy red cream with lovely pigmentation. Like First Mate, one coat is nearly pigmented enough, though I did two. Zoya’s Maura is similar, slightly less red, though.
  • Knotty is a pale, yellowed, champagne beige with light champagne shimmer. With three coats, there is still some nail line showing, but I get the feeling this wasn’t designed to be 100% opaque. Not quite sure of a dupe for this one, though I wouldn’t go as far as saying this is unique, either.
  • Life Preserver is a brightened, rusted orange cream. I used two coats for an opaque result. I couldn’t think of just the right dupe for this shade–the rusted/burnt feeling makes it seem different compared to other orange creams I own.

Though the formula on these seemed to be a bit thicker than average for China Glaze, application was still even and smooth. I ended up with at least two coats on all of these, though some I did three with. China Glaze is one of my personal favorite brands, because of their color and finish range–I really feel like they bring out a little something for everyone in each of their seasonal collections. China Glaze polishes last a good week on me with just minor tip wear by day seven.

If you want to know more about how products are evaluated, read out Rating System FAQ! :)

  • Product: 28/30
  • Value: 8/10
  • Ease of Use: 4/5
  • Packaging: 4/5

FINAL THOUGHTS: From this set, I really loved Ahoy! and First Mate–they’re bold, beautiful on, and apply flawlessly.

WHERE TO BUY: January/February 2011

See more photos & swatches!


China Glaze: Ahoy!, Below Deck, First Mate


China Glaze: Ahoy!, Below Deck, First Mate


China Glaze: Ahoy!, Below Deck, First Mate


China Glaze: Hey Sailor, Knotty, Life Preserver


China Glaze: Hey Sailor, Knotty, Life Preserver


China Glaze: Hey Sailor, Knotty, Life Preserver


China Glaze Ahoy! Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Ahoy! Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Ahoy! Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Ahoy! Nail Lacquer (Flash)


China Glaze Below Deck Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Below Deck Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Below Deck Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Below Deck Nail Lacquer (Flash)


China Glaze First Mate Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze First Mate Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze First Mate Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze First Mate Nail Lacquer (Flash)


China Glaze Hey Sailor Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Hey Sailor Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Hey Sailor Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Hey Sailor Nail Lacquer (Flash)


China Glaze Knotty Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Knotty Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Knotty Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Knotty Nail Lacquer (Flash)


China Glaze Life Preserver Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Life Preserver Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Life Preserver Nail Lacquer (Natural Light)


China Glaze Life Preserver Nail Lacquer (Flash)

Product & Review FAQ

Where can I purchase China Glaze Nail Lacquer? How much is it?

8ty8beauty.com as well as Sally's Beauty Supply stores. The price varies from $3 to $7.

Is it limited edition?

The press release I received didn't say it was.

Any dupes?

See individual shade reviews.

Discussion and debate are highly encouraged, and we expect community members to participate respectfully. When asking a question, please check the FAQ section (above) for information about purchasing, price, dupes, and the like. If you have general feedback or need technical support, please contact us.

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57 thoughts on “China Glaze Anchors Away Review, Photos, Swatches (Part 1)

  1. Rebecca

    I just like First Mate!

  2. Avatar of Arantza Arantzazu

    I like Knotty, I find it very elegant =)

  3. tehteh

    I really like the way Knotty looks…I’m really excited for it…I really need to know whether the store that carries CG in Portugal is getting this collection ASAP…I hope they do =)

  4. leesie

    GORGEOUS.
    I NEED that blue, and am snagging all of these except Knotty…but if I catch it on clearance at Sally’s later, I’ll probably get it.
    Thanks for the review!

  5. Avatar of Line Line S

    Thank you for the review!
    How is Below Deck compared to Essies Merino Cool?

  6. Carrie

    So far, so pretty!

    Definitely going to pick up First Mate. Below Deck is pretty too (and I’m totally jonsing on greyed out colors right now) but do you know if it’s similiar to Essie’s Merino Cool?

  7. You’re really the one to go to for swatches! Lovely!
    I’m digging the Orange, and look forward to Part 2 of this because I’m interested in some of the other colors.

  8. Gaby

    Gorgeous colors!! I have to have Ahoy, Below Deck and First Mate. Can’t wait to get my hands on them.

  9. Alina

    Is Ahoy! similar to OPI Let Me Entertain you?

  10. Tatiana

    I love mauve nail polishes. Can’t get enough of them!

    Christine, let me ask you something, how do you deal with all these websites that steal your pics? I’m gutted when I see some cheeky people out there who won’t credit you for the photos and – worse – add their own watermark to them. I mean, the nerve!

  11. Avatar of Natalia natalia

    first mate and below deck are delishhhh…must track these down

  12. Charlotte

    How do you think First Mate compares to Orly La Playa? =]

      • Charlotte

        I think I prefer the Orly, thanks!

        I also want to say that in reply to the snarky comment below, that your nail swatches have improved dramatically in recent months. I think the problem is that a minority of nail bloggers (Scrangie and Lacquerized in particular) have absolutely perfect nail photos and people have come to expect that from all bloggers. We can’t all be perfect, and you do do THE best lip swatches ever. X

        • I’m always happy to work on improving them, but unless people note specific areas for improvement, it is hard for me to improve. They look fine to me (good even), so I’m not really sure what I am doing wrong.

          • Charlotte

            If I was being really critical I would say that the gaps between the polish and your cuticle and the sides of your nail are a bit big and in a few swatches you can see some remnants of old polish. But none of that actually matters as I’m here to look at the colours and not judge your nail painting skills! And as you’ve said these are swatches, and if we were all testing out 12 polishes I wouldn’t paint them all the way to the edges either!

            Please don’t be offended, I really love your site! x

  13. tia

    I don’t think these have been released yet but if anyone has seen them let us polish fanatics kknow

  14. Avatar of Alisha Alisha in WI

    You have such pretty nails! Super long natural ones gross me out for some reason…lol.

  15. Avatar of Alannah Alannah

    Wow, I love Below Deck, but I have several plum polishes already so I’ll have to see if there are any dupes in my collection… it’s gorgeous, though!

  16. Glenda

    I love Ahoy!,Knotty,and Below Deck.

  17. Angela

    Life Preserver looks gorgeous!

  18. I love China Glaze, but a lot of the colors, it seems, have been done before. I almost want to say I really like Below Deck, but I have so many others just like it!

  19. Ruthless

    Below Deck & First Mate, that’s it.

  20. DonnaN

    Ahoy, Knotty and Hey Sailor…..all up my alley!!

  21. Jean

    Cute. Like all of these except for Knotty.

  22. Eliza

    I’m getting Ahoy!, Knotty and First Mate. I don’t know what people are talking about, Knotty’s gorgeous! I mean, Holiday 2011 people!

  23. Marina

    I’m on the fence about First Mate. It’s beautiful and i love blues, but doesn’t it duplicate Bermuda Breakaway?

  24. Ashley

    Omg i have been looking for a dark blue like first mate!

  25. anon

    i wonder why you don’t take the same care and time to make your nail color swatches look as nice as every other product you review? it seems weird to me.

    • I’m not sure what is wrong with these? If perhaps you could offer some constructive criticism, I would find your comment more helpful.

      • Dafne Ba.

        I’m not sure where Anon is from, but in some countries (I know that’s the case in Brazil, at least) it’s common practice to remove all your cuticles and actually paint the entire nail. Maybe that’s why she feels it doesn’t look up to scratch. It’s just a cultural thing really, even though removing your cuticles is not very healthy. :)

        • Interesting! I don’t paint all the way down, because these are just swatches, so I’m doing all 12 in one sitting – so I don’t want to have to put excess wear and tear on my cuticles if I don’t need to (plus, it can be more difficult to remove color when it gets near or around the cuticle, which would make swatches look worse, haha).

      • Maeve

        Christine, your reply was SUCH a win. You always reply to people with such grace, and I appreciate that. Personally, I love your swatches! Maybe she meant because you don’t go all the way down to the cuticle? But it’s a swatch so I don’t see why that matters… But, thank you for taking the time to review stuff for us. I think the beauty world is better with Temptalia in it!

        • Going down to the cuticle would probably make them worse, LOL! It would be such a pain to clean off any excess color, not to mention wayyy too much wear and tear.

          Thanks, Maeve! I’m always happy to take constructive criticism, but if you don’t have suggestions or can’t point out something specific you dislike “Your nail shape sucks,” it’s so hard to do anything to fix it.

    • You must be joking, right? Christine has the best nail swatches on the Internet!

  26. Evelyn

    how do you apply your nailpolish so neatly? when i put on nail polish i usually have to wipe around the sides ’cause i’m so messy lol.

  27. Joanna

    Late to the party but I’m loving First Mate and Life Preserver really hard. The swatches are wonderful, thanks!

  28. Ahoy is fabulous! Makes me think of 1950′s starlettes. Just totally gorgeous.

  29. Maja

    Oh, this is a perfect spring collection and I want the whole bunch! Of these I especially love Ahoy! and First Mate.

  30. It’s not limited edition!?
    Yay, if so I can actually buy all the shades I want :D

  31. Francesca

    Below Deck looks extremely similar to OPI’s Parlez Vous OPI!

  32. Vanessa S

    Christine!!! Thank you thank you thank you! for suggesting 8ty8beauty.com… I will never ever buy china Glaze anywhere else! They are so affordable and quick. I ordered the Anchors Away Collection on friday and i just received it! AMAZING!

  33. MonaMarieAlcayde

    what top coat did you use with those polish? it’s really shiny!