Thursday, January 26, 2012

Julep Penny Box: My Thoughts

Hello all you lovely people!  I wanted to show you some of the nail mail I received in the last week or so and decided to start with my first Julep box.  When I saw the promo for a box for a penny, I decided to give it a try because I've seen a lot of swatches and good reviews for Julep's Maven program.  I was on the fence about trying it because of the size of the polish bottles and the standardness of the colors, so I waited for a promo.  I'm glad I did, because I think I would have been very disappointed with this box if I had paid full price for it.

I received the It Girl Intro box with Hayden, Leah and Megan.

Hayden is up first and I absolutely abhor this color on my nails!  I think it would be alright for dots or small details in nail art, but I gag when I look at it on the whole nail.  It is a bright orange peach cream.  The application was pretty annoying as well, too thick, so after two coats, I took it off, added thinner and tried again.  It worked out okay then.  

These pictures show three coats of Hayden with no top coat.  

This is Leah and the only polish from this box that I love, but I have reservations about our love that I'll get to in a moment.  I love green polishes and Leah is not a disappointment in that area.  I didn't have anything of this bright shade.  It's a cream with a little bit of a sparkly surprise in it, if you look closely.  My camera couldn't pick it up well enough, so I can't show it to you now, unfortunately.

 Leah's formula was thankfully a lot better than Hayden's.  I didn't have to thin it and it was creamy and smooth.  These pictures show three thin coats.

Finally, I received Megan.  This polish is a dusty blue shimmer and I like it well enough, but when I looked at it closely, I knew I'd had a close dupe for it that I frankened away.  A lot of it went into my Star Trek Franken, I'm A Doctor, Not A Nail Polish!  In any case, I suppose that Megan wasn't too much of a disappointment because I don't have that color anymore and I also found it agreeable to swatch.

I had swatched Hayden right before this, so I was feeling bummed and didn't do my best to eliminate brush strokes and I apologize for that.  I actually also don't remember if Megan took two or three coats.  It was the thinnest of the three, so I think it was probably three.

And here is what makes me have reservations about Leah, and Julep polishes in general.  Dupes that are easy to find and waaaaaay more affordable.  If you're not a Julep Maven, you can purchase their polishes for $14. Their bottles are on the small size, 8 mL or 0.27 oz.  I'm not shy about spending money on spectacular polishes, even in small bottles, but they have to be special!  

This is a comparison between Julep Leah and Pure Ice Free Spirit, which I picked up at Walmart while I was bargain hunting.  I spotted it and thought it looked familiar, maybe similar but surely not the same thing.  I couldn't tell the difference in the bottles or on the nail and I most certainly can't tell the difference in photos.  Leah is on my thumb, middle and pinky fingers.  Free Spirit is on my index and ring fingers.

I only have a few Pure Ice polishes, the others being glitters that I was actually going to franken with, but after using this one, I'd certainly be willing to try a few more.  It was just as creamy and nice in its application as Leah.  I haven't worn either for a full manicure yet, so I can't talk about wear here, but it's probably only a matter of time given how I feel about greens!

In any case, I'm not unhappy with my Julep Maven program in general because I signed up through a promo and they give you a lot of options with your membership.  In addition to getting these polishes for $11.20 and free shipping on your orders (Though I still consider $11.20 steep for what their polish is), you can skip months or send your box to a friend.  Case in point, I skipped my February box because none of them wowed me.  I'm at least going to give one more box a shot in the next few months before I decide to keep or cancel the program.  I've heard customer support horror stories though, but as long as I can avoid them, I don't see the harm in stringing Julep along.  

In addition, I'm not putting up my referral link on my blog until I decide if I endorse the program, but if a promo comes up again, I'll let you guys know!

Thanks for reading!

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