Saturday, May 31, 2014

NOTD: Julep Jeanne + BPS Bow Nail Decals


My May Julep Maven Bogo Glam Box came with a pretty purple polish called Paulette (see swatches HERE) and Jeanne (pictured above).
To be honest, when I first saw Jeanne, I wasn’t sure if it was a polish that I could wear. I’m very partial to nail shades that are light, pastel, and cream finish. After trying Jeanne, I realized that it is very bold but also quite fun for spring and summer.
Julep describes Jeanne as a jet-set blue crème. The colour swatch and bottle picture on the Julep site look more muted than the polish actually looks on the nails. In real life, Jeanne is a very vibrant sky blue shade. My photos make it look as though it has a green undertone, yet it actually has a very slight purple undertone. It’s rich and bright but also very suitable for a range of skintones.
The formula of this polish is quite thick; however, it looked smooth and opaque after two coats and lasted for over a week with my Poshe top coat. I recommend Jeanne for those of you who love blue polishes but also those who are willing to venture out of their comfort zone a bit to try a new shade for spring.
To add a bit of softness to this edgy shade, I added pretty bow decals from Born Pretty Store. The decals come on a large sheet with twelve designs in creamy white shades with silver accents (flower nail stickers). They lasted just as long as the polish and were very easy to apply. They were also very affordable at approximately $5 (plus 10% off with the code Beauty4K31 and free worldwide shipping) for so many different designs. I’m looking forward to using some of the other shapes to create wedding nail looks.
What do you think of this nail look for spring?

*Although the decals mentioned in this post were sent for review purposes, all opinions expressed are honest and are my own*

May 2014 Julep Maven Box (Boho Glam)





Back in July, I signed up for Julep and took the Maven quiz. I was sorted into the Boho Glam group and got my first box for free by using the code FREEMAVEN at checkout. If you are interested, you can sign up for Julep HERE and get started on your quiz to see which category you fall into. If you don’t like what is offered in that category, you can opt for another. Even if you are not interested in the monthly subscription, Julep also sells individual polishes. You can check out the pretty new spring shades on Julep’s Nail Polish Color Page by clicking HERE.

To see my intro box, click HERE.

What I really like about this service is that you can skip boxes and send boxes to a friend. Since I already have a decent collection of nail polish, I have skipped quite a few months since receiving my intro box. I decided to only opt in for boxes that were truly unique and contained products that were not similar to any in my collection.

For May, I missed the deadline and forgot to check out the box and make a decision before it shipped, so I received the Boho Glam version of the May box. To be completely honest, I would have skipped the box just from seeing it on the site because the polish colours were a bit out of my comfort zone and I know I won’t use the plié wand.  It looks like a very interesting concept but I prefer to just use the brushes that come with each polish. That said, I know that someone else will love it so I am giving it away, along with a precision brush, to one of my lovely followers. Click HERE to enter the giveaway (it’s open worldwide!).

Although the polishes looked a bit scary on the site, I loved them once I tried them out. The pretty purple is called Paulette (see my swatches HERE) and the blue one is called Jeanne (see my swatches HERE).

Overall, I am happy that I received the May Julep Maven box even though it’s not something I would have chosen for myself. I will use the polishes and I’m excited to be giving away the plié wand on my blog.

What are your thoughts on this month’s box?

NOTD: Julep Paulette

Sometimes my love for cream finish polishes causes me to forget about the other beautiful polishes out there. I’m glad that Paulette from Julep is here to remind me that jewel tones and shimmer finishes are pretty and fresh for spring.

Paulette was released with Julep’s May 2014 Boho Glam Maven box (check out my review of this box HERE). It’s on the company’s limited edition page, so grab a bottle of this soon if it’s something you want to add to your spring polish line-up.

Julep describes Paulette as golden lilac tulle shimmer. As a very light orchid tone with a subtle gold overlay, this shade is on trend for the season and will be perfect for summer with its mermaid-like sheen.

Like most Julep polishes, Paulette has a thick formula, but it applied very smoothly and dried rather quickly. I only needed two coats for the polish to look even and opaque. With my Poshe top coat it lasted for over a week without a single chip.

I really love this polish and I’m glad that it came in my May box this month. Otherwise, my focus on cream finish polishes may have prevented me from noticing its beauty.

The May Maven box also came with another polish called Jeanne which is another shade that is a bit different than what I normally wear on my nails during the warmer months (see my swatches of Jeanne HERE). 

What are your thoughts on Paulette and Jeanne?

GIVEAWAY: Julep Plié Wand + Precision Brush


I thought it would be nice to give away this Julep Plié Wand and precision brush to one of my wonderful followers!
The giveaway is open worldwide and will end on Sunday, June 15, 2014 at 11:59 PM.
To enter, fill out the Rafflecopter form below.
Good Luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Nail Polish Canada Haul: Poshe Top Coat and Essie Love Every Minute

First I will begin by explaining my search for a new topcoat. Before my recent purchase, I owned three bottles of topcoat: Zoya Armor, Revlon Colorstay, and Seche Vite. While I love Zoya top coat over Zoya polishes, I find that it does not work as well with non-Zoya formulas. I purchased the Revlon Colorstay a couple years ago after watching rave reviews of it on YouTube; however, I have never liked it. It dries very slowly and definitely does not prevent my polish from chipping. I’ve been using it for a while because I don’t like to waste products. Then one day, while painting my nails for a special event, I grabbed the tiny sample bottle of Seche Vite that I received in a beauty subscription box. I used to use Seche Vite when I was younger and remembered that it always left a shiny finish and helped my polish last for a long time. When I opened the sample bottle and started applying the product, my throat began to burn and I felt like I had to cough. Then I remembered why I stopped using Seche Vite—I switched over to 3-free polishes (fewer harsh chemicals) and got rid of any items that I had that were extra toxic. Don’t get me wrong, Seche Vite is a wonderful product and many people love it, but it just didn’t make sense for me to use a top coat that was not 3-free with 3-free polishes.

After much research and contemplation, I remembered that I used a great top coat a few years ago from Poshe. I purchased it when I was on vacation in the USA. After finishing the entire bottle, I could not find the product in Canada and that’s when I tried Revlon Colorstay. Recently, I found Poshe top coat on Nail Polish Canada and purchased a bottle. It works very similar to Seche Vite and leaves a glossy, long lasting finish that really does help my polish last longer. Not to mention, it dries very quickly and it’s 3-free. Before placing my Nail Polish Canada order, I added one of the new Essie 2014 Wedding polishes to my cart. I purchased the colour Love Every Minute which is a pretty rose coral creme. Click HERE to see swatches and my full review on this polish.

Overall, I am very happy with my purchase. Have you purchased any new polishes for spring and summer? What’s your current favourite top coat?

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

NOTD: Essie Love Every Minute

How beautiful is this rosy coral shade from Essie’s 2014 wedding collection? I always love Essie’s creations for wedding season because they are very wearable yet more unique than the traditional bridal favourite—a French manicure. Whereas last year’s collection followed a purple theme (see which ones I picked up from last year HERE), this year’s wedding polishes from Essie include more peach/coral tones, a white, and a pretty blue.

When I saw the collection, I was instantly drawn to Love Every Minute because peach, coral, and pink cream polishes are my favourite for spring and this polish is a pleasant mix of all three shades. Since it leans more pink than orange, it is more wearable for me and I think that it would flatter many skintones.

As for the formula, this polish seemed a bit thicker than some of my other Essie polishes. It also appeared a bit streaky upon application but dried to an even finish. In the photo, some faint patches are visible near the top of my middle and ring fingers, but these sheer spots are much less visible in person. My nails may have contributed to this problem since most polishes leave patches in these spots. To reach full opacity and an even finish, I needed to apply three coats of Love Every Minute. That said, the staying power is impressive. I applied this polish one week ago and I still do not have one chip. There is a bit of tip wear but it is not very noticeable.

I have received many compliments on this shade over the last week and I really love the colour. It’s very fresh and wearable for spring since it’s bright but also soft.

Overall, I really like this polish and will be wearing it often throughout the spring and summer.

Friday, May 16, 2014

NOTD: Essie Go Ginza + Shine of the Times

For me, spring nails are all about pretty pastels. For the last couple months, I have been wearing creamy pastel peaches, pinks, and purples. While I love the look of pastel nails, they can get a bit redundant. To achieve a bit of uniqueness, I decided to add a bit of sparkle to one of my latest manicures.

The base of this look is Go Ginza by Essie. I wrote a full review on this polish last June that you can view HERE. I topped off this pretty purple pastel with Shine of the Times which I featured in my Top 10 Essie Polishes post. For this look, I used two coats of Go Ginza and one coat of Shine of the Times. The little iridescent flakies in Shine of The times applied smoothly over Go Ginza and lasted for over a week without any wear.

I really like this combination for spring. What are your thoughts on it?

May 2014 Beauty Box Five


The May 2014 Beauty Box Five features spring-inspired products to energize us after a long winter and prepare us for summer.
If you are unfamiliar with Beauty Box Five, it is a subscription service that sends its members five cosmetic samples each month. The service is open to those in Canada and the USA, and subscriptions start at $12 per month. The best part is that shipping is free!
The brands that Beauty Box Five works with are also very impressive (see them all HERE).
Now let’s talk about the May items…

1. MaskerAide Hydrating Facial Sheet Mask – If you have been reading my blog for a while, you will know that I have been using and loving MaskerAide sheet masks for quite a while (see my review HERE). I’m always up for an at-home facial so I was very happy to receive this Beauty Rest-ore mask in the May box. While all MaskerAide masks are paraben-free, vegan friendly, mess-free, and biodegradable, this specific mask’s purpose is to smooth, restore, and regenerate skin with argan oil, super fruit extracts, green algae, and vitamin e—a perfect pick-me-up for skin that has been battling the winter elements for the past few months. This mask is full size and retails for $5.99.

2. H2O Plus Aqualibrium Marine Cleansing Gel – this oil-free cleanser made with sea salt and marine botanicals exfoliates skin while protecting it from free radicals and environmental damage. Although I normally avoid trying new skincare due to my very sensitive skin, I’m always looking for a new facial exfoliator. As far as I can tell, this clear gel cleanser does not contain any rough particles or harsh chemicals so I’m looking forward to trying it in place of my regular exfoliator. The sample tube contains 8 ml of product. The full size contains 120 ml and retails for $18.

3. Ban Total Refresh Cooling Body Cloths – I received three of these cloths in the scent Restore (a light powder scent). I love the concept of using cooling cloths to refresh on hot summer days. I’m going to keep these in my purse to use on my feet which often feel very hot and tired after a long day of walking around in flip-flops. These cloths cost $2.97 for a pack of ten.

4. Harvey Prince Hello fragrance – Normally, I don’t usually enjoy fragrance samples sent in beauty boxes because they are often heavy, mature, and overly floral. This fragrance is definitely an exception with its light, energizing scent that boasts refreshing notes of mandarin, grapefruit, forsythia, and plumeria—a sunny summer morning in a bottle! I could not figure out the size of the sample, but the full size contains 5.7 oz of product and retails for $55.

5. Cattiva Precisione Eye Liner – Perfect for spring and summer, this retractable eyeliner is waterproof. It creates smooth, smudge-resistant lines and is paraben free. As amazing as this liner sounds, I will not be trying it because it’s in the shade black which is too harsh for my very pale complexion. That said, I know that someone else will love it so I will save it for a giveaway. This liner is a full size product that retails for $20.
Overall, I am very impressed with the May 2014 box from Beauty Box Five. The sheet mask and eyeliner more than pay for the box, and the smaller samples are perfect to keep in a purse or beach bag for spring and summer.  I’m looking forward to next month’s box!
To learn more about Beauty Box Five and to sign up, visit https://www.beautybox5.com/
*Although the products mentioned in this post were sent for review purposes, all opinions expressed are honest and are my own*