Thursday, January 31, 2013

February Julep Maven 2013

It's here!  My favorite polish subscription service.  For the February Julep maven month, the collection is Glamour!  I was so impressed with the shades for this month and I feel they are back on track after last months box which was an okay box.  I am usually a Bombshell but this month I had to go with the It Girl box.  I added the Oxygen Nail Treatment product as an extra so I could try this months product out too.

First look! There is a gold and black theme going on in this box.  I have an insert with this months quote and an insert with my It Girl colors.  "Be yourself.  The world worships the original." - Ingrid Bergman.

There is a bed of gold and black paper cushioning a little baggie with this months extra, the Freedom Top Coat extra, polishes are wrapped in a black bag with a gold ribbon, there were two added chocolate hearts and everything was wrapped in gold paper.

In my box I got Julep Rebel, the Freedom Top Coat, the Julep lash curler, Julep Joan, Julep Marion and the chocolate hearts.

The surprise extra was this adorable portable lash curler!  You just flip down a handle and the curler is all set to go.  This will be a great little addition to my makeup collection.

I started out with Joan.  This is a raspberry plum base with rose gold shimmer.  Unlike regular shimmer this is a flaky shimmer!  Flaky polishes are my absolute favorite so I'm very excited with this polish.

This is two coats.  The raspberry base is the slightest bit sheer allowing you to see the nail line slightly.  The gold flakies have great coverage and reflect back a bright gold with great intensity when it catches the light.  I love this polish and I am so pleased I got it!

Julep Marion is a smokey blue with silver shimmer.  This is shimmer is the traditional type.  In two coats I had full opaque coverage. The blue is a beautiful hue and I can see this polish matching almost everything in my wardrobe.  

The silver and blue complement each other perfectly!

Last but not least we have Julep Rebel.  This is why I switched to the It Girl box this month.  I love my holographic polishes and silver is my favorite shade.  

Unlike other  holos I have tried in the past, the coverage of this was fantastic!  Two coats covered the whole nail evenly and beautifully.  The holo is slightly scattered.  In shade you will have a metallic looking silver nail but in sunlight or direct light you will get rainbow reflections on every nail!  Check out the rainbow arc towards the bottom of the nail in the macro shot to see a little bit of what I'm talking about.

The Julep Freedom Top Coat is one I tried over a Valentines Day mani.  It is described as a top coat that cures in 5 mins and will rival gel top coats without actually being gel polish. This top coat does smell strongly but when you get over that fact WOW!  It goes on thick but still liquidy so this would be a fantastic glitter topper.  It dried incredibly fast and gave me a super glossy shine.  I was very impressed and so excited this was a free gift in every box.  I may have to purchase some more bottles!

My extra product I ordered was the Oxygen Nail Treatment.  This treatment is said to use oxygen technology to allow nails to breath while also conditioning and restructuring your nails to be stronger.  There is a UV filter in the formula and it is not supposed to be used with any other polish.  Boo!  When I had ordered this I planned on using it as a base coat but since it won't work with other polishes I'll probably include this in a giveaway or contest prize.  

Overall I am super pleased with this box.  Rebel, Joan and Marion all held their own but Rebel is my stand out favorite!  The Freedom Top Coat is fantastic and the lash curler was a perfect addition this month.  A+ Julep!  

Did you guys hear what Julep did for one maven this month?  Each month you can upgrade your box to the entire collection for $50-$55.  Dipped in Lacquer upgraded her box this month to the entire Galamour Collection.  Julep called and asked for her shoe size for a surprise.  A week later she got a box containing a brand new pair of Louboutins from Julep!  Just because!  Julep didn't even promote or announce this deal they were just being fantastic.  This is why I love being a maven!  

If you'd like to become a maven it is easy to sign up and you can try out your first maven box for only 1 cent to see how you like it.  After that boxes are $19.99 a month.  If you don't like it you can always cancel and keep your starter box at no extra charge.  To get your 1 cent box click on this link and take the Julep style quiz.  At checkout use the code JULEPVIP to get your box reduced to 1 cent.  This is a limited time offer so jump on this practically free polish!

Friday, January 25, 2013


Who lives in a pineapple under the sea?

This guy! And all his buddies. Today's nails are Spongebob nails!

I did a blue gradient using Julep Robbin and Julep Annie, hand painted some nautical flower clouds and then added all my favorite Spongey characters. Topped off with Butter London's matte top coat to give it that extra 2D cartoony effect.

Friday, January 18, 2013

New York City Nails

Name: Casey
City: New York City
Why I love it: New York City is home to me.  I love it because it is one of the most iconic cities in the world.  Our landmarks represent not only our city but all of America.  I love living in such an influential and amazing place!  I included the Chrysler Building, The Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty and the Twin Towers on my nails.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Lovely Lacquer

Today I have some gorgeous polishes from Lovely Lacquer.  And oh man, do these live up to the name of lovely!  Lauren sent me five of her polishes to swatch and review.  I got four from her Fairytale Collection and one of her staple polishes.

Stick Figures is a clear based glitter topper with black and teal hex glitters and white bar glitters.  I love the black and white with a pop of color.  One thing I've noticed that is killer about these polishes is the formula!  I let this polish sit for awhile and when I went to reuse it I didn't even need to shake it up and I never had to fish for glitters.  For this mani I used Essie Sand Tropez as the nude base and an accent of Butter London Thames to set off the teal glitters.  

Macros of Stick Figures on the nail and a bottle shot showing all those beauteous glitters.  Now onto the Fairytale Collection!  This collection is inspired by different Disney movies and each has a color combo that brings each fairy tale to life!

Let Your Hair down is an opaque purple based creamy polish filled with textured pink square glitters, small gold holographic hex glitters and even smaller grape purple hex glitters.  I have never seen such a full color, full coverage based polish with glitters like this in it before!  The base isn't sheer at all but you can still see the glitters peeking through.  It is a very cool look and something you've got to experience if you've never tried a polish like this before.  

This macro shows Let Your Hair down on it's own without a top coat on the nail and in the bottle.  The polish is slightly textured on the nail but smooths right out when you apply a top coat.  On the full hand swatch a top coat was used and the nails look and felt smooth.  This is a definite collection winner for me!

Now we'll go back to clear based glitters for Fairest of Them All.  This glitter is inspired by Snow Whites princess dress she wears in the movie and it goes together wonderfully.  There are large and medium yellow hex glitters that match her skirt, large and medium red hex glitters to match her accents and medium and large blue hex glitters to match the top portion of her dress.  Dispersed throughout are very small black hex glitters which represent her hair.  When you have red, yellow and blue together they are known as the primary colors and they always look fabulous together.  This polish is no exception!  I used Zoya Purity as a white base so these glitters could really show off and painted a mini Snow White on the accent finger so you could see the parallels to her outfit.  

This macro shows Fairest of Them All on the finger and in the bottle.  The bottle shot is probably one of my all time favorite macros I've ever taken.  The glitters all just float perfectly suspended and the colors just complement each other so well.  Another hit from the Fairytale Collection!

Back to those opaque based glitters I loved before!  This one is Mermaid Tale.  The creamy white base is opaque and hides away purple, teal and pink glitters.  The white base leaves a thin layer over the glitters turning them pastel and delicate.  This glitter is complex with pink shatter glitters, purple square glitters, large purple hex glitters and teal medium hex glitters.  

This macro of Mermaid Tale shows the density and complexity of the glitters as well as that pastel look that you get from the white layered over the colors.  The macro shows Mermaid Tale without a top coat while the full hand swatch does have a top coat.  This polish was a little more bumpy than Let Your Hair Down.  The top coat helped to smooth it out.  This polish is like no other polish out there and I highly recommend trying it!  Glitter polishes with opaque bases are hard to come by.

Finally we come to the last polish in my review Oops, I Overslept.  This polish has its inspiration rooted in Sleeping Beauty.  This is a clear based polish with small light pink hex glitters, small light pink squares, small deep pink textured hex glitters and small deep pink textured square glitters.  Dispersed throughout is a fine silver holographic glitter that finishes the look perfectly.  For my swatch mani I used Zoya Purity for the white base, Ciate Strawberry Milkshake for the light pink chevron and OPI La Paz-itively Hot for the deep pink of the chevron.  Just like Lauren's other polishes with clear bases they go on smooth and I don't have to fish for glitters.  Even after a month of sitting without use there was no settling and the polish was ready to go.  

This macro of Oops, I Overslept shows how well these pinks go together and really shows the holographic shine of the small silver glitters in the bottle shot.  I didn't think I was going to like this polish at first because I'm not much of a pink girl but this glitter may convert me!

Overall I have no negative feedback for any of theses five polishes from Lovely Lacquer! Usually I have a few favorites or a few helpful suggestions but all of these are on par. The formulas were incredibly well mixed and the color combinations of the glitter were unique and gorgeously combined.  Definitely try out Mermaid Tale and Let Your Hair Down to see these gorgeous opaque bases with glitters in them and I highly suggest her clear based polishes too.  You can find her shop at, on facebook and on instagram @LovelyLacquer.

Please note this polish was sent for review and is based on my honest, individual opinion.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Rugrats Nails

I'm very excited with my most recent design!  A few nights ago I was channel surfing and Nick and Night was playing Rugrats in Paris.  I was born in the 80's and I was a 90's kid so I love the Rugrats!  I decided to do a design featured off the show.  I'll show you a bit of my artistic process here.

I started with a base coat of Julep Donna, a deep teal color creme.  It matched the blueish colored rug in the opening scene of the show.

After Donna was dry I dipped into my paints and painted white outlines to my figures.  The white base will make the detail colors show up bright and more accurate.  I went with the Rugrats design on my thumb, Tommy on my pointer, Chuckie on my middle, Angelica on my ring and Spike on my pinky.

After layering the white I went over with the largest colors used in each character.  The rugrats were skintone, hair and shirt color, spike was brown for fur and the logo was a light purple.  I went through and added my black outlines then filled in the little details and colors there.  In a few places I had to go back through and touch up any little error or out of place colors.

And voila!  Only two and  a half hours and I'm done.

I finished up with Butter Londons Matte Top Coat to make the design look more 2-D and cartoon-y.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

January Julep Maven 2013

Happy New Year!

To bring in the new year I've got my Julep maven box. This moths theme is nudes and neons. I saw that many mavens skipped this box but I went through with it because I was interested in the cuticle stick as this months product.  This box was so-so but I'm still pleased with some of the items I received!  As usual I got the bombshell style box.

I got my regular Julep maven box and a three polish add on set because I wasn't sure how I'd like this months colors.  When I think of January my thoughts usually don't go straight to neons.  

Opening we've got Juleps signature shredded paper in neon yellow and my polish and products all wrapped in a neon yellow tissue paper.  I have an insert detailing my products along with this months quote: "Laughter is an instant vacation." - Milton Berle

I love the baggie and ribbons they include in each box because I reuse the packaging to send nail mail packages to friends. :)

This months box has a sheet of swatch stickers to put on your Julep polish tops so you can get a more accurate reading of the colors inside.  It's a nice extra but I probably won't end up using them.  I'm just not really a swatch type of girl whether its nail wheels or stickers.  Julep Ava and Julep Bette are my two included colors this month.  Another extra this month included three yoga hair ties.  I have been hearing a lot about yoga ties but haven't tried them until now and I am IN love.  Yoga ties can be worn as bracelets or in your hair.  Unlike elastic bands they will not leave a crease in your hair.  They are also super easy to pull out and won't yank any hair out with them.  I got two neon greens and one neon pink tie.  I don't wear anything to the gym but these when I work out now.  Finally, the product this month is a hand and cuticle stick that will restore the youthful appearance of your hands with peptide to strengthen and repair your skin and vitamins C and E nourish and soothe.

I wasn't too sure how I was going to feel about the polishes this month so I got the Bora Bora add on box including Mandy a coral pink creme, Renee a light lilac creme and Taylor a deep sky blue creme.  I will be swatching this in my next post since they didn't come included with my maven box but were and extra that I selected but I am loving all of these shades.

I did not think that I was going to like Ava, my nude color, which is described as a sheer ballet slipper, pink frost.  I was wrong!  This light pink was absolutely beautiful.  In two coats I had an opaque coverage (I thought this was supposed to be sheer?) and the fine shimmery frost is subtle and very pretty.  I notice that Julep has gotten some new brushes!  The wand in the bottle is flatter and longer than the old brushes and the brush itself was a bit flatter and wider than in past boxes.  I found that polish clings to the wand a bit more but I like this upgrade because the new brushes easily spread polish over the whole nail in just a few strokes.

This macro of Ava shows the fine shimmer if you look carefully by the highlight.  Like I said above, very subtle.  It is a little more visible in person.  

I was looking forward to Julep Bette as my neon color in this box.  Bette is described as an electric neon, purple creme however I found it slightly sheer on its own (what is going on with these mixed up descriptions Julep?).  I like to beef my neons up with a white polish underneath to give it a brighter look.  On my ring finger I used a white base of Zoya Purity and then topped it with two coats of Bette.  I got a much more creamy look that I found more accurate to the bottle color.  On my other three fingers are three coats of Bette on her own.  You can still see the visible nail line and I much prefer it with the white base.  The finish to this polish is rubbery, not quite totally matte but half way there.  I like this color but I liked Ava much more in this box. 

This macro shows Bette on its own in three coats.  

I was looking forward to the cuticle stick in this box because it retails for $22 and I haven't tried anything like it before. I tend to stick to lotions for moisturizing my hands and cuticles.  The stick is rather large, about the size of a large Elmer's glue stick, and you get a lot of product.  It is waxy and similar to chap stick in consistency.  I have heard a lot of other girls that have tried this product who love it and find it quite moisturizing.  I'm not too sure how I feel about it.  Applying it feels like rubbing chap stick on your hands and it doesn't really seem to sink in but more creates a protective barrier over the skin.  I don't like the scent very much.  I find this months product so so and I will probably stick with my regular cuticle butter, but after hearing other positive reviews for this it may just be my personal preference.

Overall I loved Julep Ava and the yoga hair ties.  Julep Bette was a nice color but I don't think it lives up to the title of a creme and I prefer it much more with a white under coat.  I wasn't feeling the swatch stickers or the hand and cuticle stick too much although I usually love the products in my boxes each month.  

Julep is running a special deal where you can try your first subscription box for 1 cent.  The deal is closing soon so try it if you are interested before they go up to the full $19.99 a month!  If you don't like the box you can keep it and cancel your subscription  at no penalty to you.  If you love it you can continue your subscription and they will bill you $19.99 a month and send you a box each month full of polish and products (the boxes are always worth way more than the $20 you pay).  You can skip months you don't want to pay, cancel at anytime and switch box styles if you don't like your assigned colors for the month.  To get a Julep box for 1 cent just head over to Julep here and click their 'Become a Maven' tab.  Take the style quiz and check out.  On the check out page enter the code JULEPVIP to get your first box reduced to 1 cent. ;)

Did you get a maven box this month?  What did you think of your products?