25 August 2011

Unicorn Pee Wanna-Be: OPI Movin' Out

Good Morning! Today I have a fun, picture-heavy post for you. If you're like most regular folks, the title of this post probably had you doing a 'huh?' when you first read it. Unicorn pee? Whaaa? If you're a nail polish fanatic, though, you probably know what it is - Clarins #230. #230 is this multichrome-y awesome polish that is pretty much the Holy Grail for nail polish fanatics. Swatch and Learn has one of the best posts on Clarins #230. (Really, do yourselves a favor and follow the link and check out photos for a few minutes. It is a stunner, this I cannot deny.)

Would I love to show off for you all my own bottle of Clarins #230? Why, of course! But I don't have one. Why not? Because it was discontinued years ago. And it sells on eBay for around $50 or higher a bottle. Yes - crazy eBayers are spending $50 on a bottle of polish. Crazy people - I mean, think of all the polishes me and my bargain-hunting skills could find for $50!

So, instead of dropping $$$ on #230, I spent about $ on #230's wannabe little unicorn sister, OPI Movin' Out. Movin' Out was released back in 2003 as a part of the OPI Holiday on Broadway collection, so it's pretty old and took some effort to find. The Polishaholic reviewed Movin' Out a few months ago, and ever since her post I've been lemming this polish. I finally got my hands on a bottle, and here we are at today's picturefest!

First, I started with CND Blackjack. Blackjack is a basic black creme with the CND formula I love. I could have gotten away with 1 coat, but applied 2 to make sure it was even and give Movin' Out the best opportunity to pop.

Then, over Blackjack went 1 coat of Movin' Out.

How many different colors do you see? I started counting, but stopped at a BAZILLION:

Oh snap! She sparkles!

No really, she SPARKLES! She's like polish and nail bling all in one:

OPI Movin' Out is long discontinued, but you can get your own bottle of Unicorn's little sister with just a little bit of googling. Check out sellers on eCrater or Bonanza first, before you go and get ripped off on evilBay. Happy hunting!

24 August 2011

Pink Wednesdays: Chanel Morning Rose

Happy Hump Day! I have a quick lunchtime post for you!

For Pink Wednesday I have for your today Chanel Morning Rose. Morning Rose is a pale warm pink with gold flecks throughout. Normally I am not one for warm-toned pinks, but the more swatches I saw online, the more the gold flecks captivated me. I thought it would be a sheer polish, because it looks so delicate, but Morning Rose can stand on her own - just 3 coats for full opacity.

The gold flecks were difficult to capture on film, so here's a shot of the bottle where it's much more pronounced:

It's a little tricky for me to describe how I feel about Morning Rose. It's not delicate or sheer enough to be a classic look on me - it's a wee bit more bold than that - but it's also not a bold bright with an edge. It's safe for work on me, but it definitely stands out, and I caught myself eying it a few times through the day. I can't tell you exactly when I'll do a mani with Morning Rose again, but I'll know the moment when I see it - when it will be a perfect accompaniment to a fantastic outfit - so it's going to stick around in my stash until that moment comes!

Morning Rose was a limited edition polish released this summer as a part of the Chanel Les Fleurs d'Ete Collection. It is currently sold out online at Chanel and Nordstrom - boo! - but call around to your local Nordstrom and Macy's Chanel counters. I still see it at several stores while I'm out and about, so pick one up while you still can!

What do you think? Are the gold flecks amazing to you, too? Do you like warm-toned pinks like Morning Rose? And did you pick up any other polishes from Chanel's summer collection, like the much more hyped Mimosa?

23 August 2011

Models Own Lemon Meringue

Good Afternoon! Hope everyone had a fantastic weekend and start to the work week! Sorry for the radio silence here at Polish & Tonic for the past few days - moving day is fast approaching (next Thursday! eek!), and my hands are taking a beating from all packing! I hopefully should be back in full capacity around Labor Day weekend, but until then, I'll hit you guys up with some new polish looks when I can!

Since I'm so excited about the Models Own 50% off sale currently underway, I thought what better way to get you excited than to give you another Models Own swatch! Today I have for you Models Own Lemon Meringue. Lemon Meringue is one of the polishes I picked up during my London-Paris vacation last month (gosh, it seems forever ago!) and is completely a-typical for me. I know I own one other yellow, but that's it in my entire collection! Lemon Meringue is a soft buttery yellow creme. As can be expected from yellow polishes (and probably why I don't own many), this went on quite streaky. I applied 3 thin(ner) coats, and you can still see some of the bumpy and unevenness on the nail. Take a look!

Now, you probably thought I was going to send Lemon Meringue to the swap/share drawer, didn't you? WRONG! Even for all of its issues, there's still something about this color that has me falling in love. There are a few nails that with 3 coats didn't have the streakiness, so I'm inclined to think if I had more time (I threw this on before work this morning) I could make Lemon Meringue look something special on my nails. I'm keeping it for now!

Lemon Meringue is currently available on the Models Own website. All Models Own products are currently 50% off on the website with code FIFTYFIFTY. The sale runs through 8/29, but get over there early to make sure they have all the colors you want in stock!

What do you think? Do you have any yellow polishes without the streaking issues? Do you like your yellows bright, or are these pastel, soft shades better on you? And what polishes are you haulin' from the Models Own sale?

Models Own 50% Off Sale!


Models Own reached 50,000 likes over on their Facebook page, and to celebrate they're having a 50% off sale! The sale applies to all items on the Models Own website, including nail polish, makeup, brushes, accessories, everything! No exclusions! The sale will last 7 days, through 8/29.

To receive the sale price, add all the items you want to purchase to your shopping cart and apply code FIFTYFIFTY before checking out.

For US shoppers: In order to qualify for international shipping, your order subtotal must be £20 or more. Once your order qualified, international shipping is a flat £9.95 worldwide.

Jump on it and head on over to the Models Own website! While the sale will last until 8/29, you're going to want to move quickly on this as items will sell out and will not be restocked during the sale. I'm loading up on nail polish (of course!), mascara, and more! I'll be sure to post my haul for you when I receive it! Once you make your order, come back over here and let us all know what you picked out!

For the full terms and conditions of the sale, click here.

19 August 2011

The Untried Diaries: Zoya Edyta

Happy Friday! Anyone have plans for this weekend? I will be packing for the upcoming move, with strategically planned breaks to go to the movies. I have so many summer movies still to catch up on! I saw Crazy Stupid Love last weekend (so good!), and this weekend will likely be 30 Minutes Or Less and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 (I know, I know, I'm like, the last person in the world to see it). Should be good times!

Today we're returning back to my stash of many untried polishes and I came up with Zoya Edyta. Edyta is a mix of green and gold shimmering awesomeness in a dark blue-green base with a metallic foil finish. Yes, it's a whole lotta color, my friends. She went on easily in 2 coats, and I was not ready for her photo finish. She stunned me, people! Take a look!

And here's the close-up:

Now, I have reviewed a few other Zoya polishes on my blog, but nothing has gotten me so excited about the brand as Edyta. Think of Edyta as Chanel Graphite's darker, more colorful, and more mysterious sister. Graphite just puts her business out on the streets, but with Edyta, you're not sure exactly what your getting until you get up close with her. I guess, you could say, Edyta is a little like me. Which is why this little hot mama is without a doubt staying put in my permanent collection. Booyah!

Zoya Edyta is available at ULTA and other beauty retailers, or online at Zoya's website. Each Zoya polish retails for $8 for a 0.5 fl oz bottle. Luckily Zoya polishes stay around for-ev-er, so Edyta is not LE and you can pick her up. Enjoy!

What do you think? Have you tried Edyta yet? How would you describe her? And what other dark, mysterious polishes do you have up your sleeve (collection)? Let us know!

16 August 2011

Models Own Coral Reef & Facebook Giveaway!

Hey Polish Fanatics!

Today I have for you a color I wore a little while ago, right after my Va. Beach trip. I had to get GOSH Ocean off my toes - hated it! - and so reached for a tried-and-true color, coral. What did I grab? Models Own Coral Reef. This is probably a new brand to a lot of you, as Models Own is a UK polish; sadly, no US stores carry it - yet (fingers crossed!). But don't worry, I'll tell you at the end of the post how you can get your American hands on some Models Own polish on the cheap!

Coral Reef is a strong orange-based coral polish. Most corals I wear tend to be a cooler, leaning towards pink, so Coral Reef was definitely out of my comfort zone. I initially wore this as a pedi, and at first I was not impressed with the Models Own formula - it went on very streaky, and even at 3 coats I didn't think I had full, even coverage. Luckily, it might have been more operator error than actual crappy formula, as this mani is 2 coats and applied very well. Still some streakiness, but not as much as I remembered. Take a look!

(pardon my crappy middle finger - I was doing some nail repair and got super glue all over myself! ugh!)

Hmm. I definitely don't hate Coral Reef, but I'm not sure I love it, either. I'm tempted to keep it in my collection for awhile and give it another chance... but then I remind myself life is too short and there are too many awesome polishes out there begging for my love and attention. Swap! Keep! Swap! Keep! I have no idea.

Models Own polishes, including Coral Reef, are available on the Models Own website starting at £5 (approx. $8 USD). They ship internationally for a flat £9.95 (approx. $16 USD). Here's the really good news - Models Own is currently having a Facebook promotion to reach 50,000 'likes' by the end of August! If they hit 50,000, Models Own will have a sitewide 50% off sale!! So, if you haven't yet, head on over to the Models Own FB page to like it! They currently have a little over 42,000 likes, and based on what I've been following, they'll probably hit the 50,000 in another week or sooner. Definitely check it out!

What do you think? Should I keep Coral Reef, or let it go? What are your Models Own must-have colors? And have you headed over to the Models Own FB paged to like it yet? We need to get to 50,000 people - I need a sale!

15 August 2011

Julep Maven: August Sneak Peek Box!

Good Morning!

Remember a little over a week ago I had mentioned the launch of the Julep Maven program? To follow-up, today we're going to take a look at all the goodies that arrived for me in this month's Sneak Peek Box! (Click on any of the photos to see a larger image!)

The unassuming package...

Everything was packed very nicely inside. There was a card with information on my 'Classic With A Twist' Sneak Peek Box and all of the goodies inside, as well as a warm welcome letter and thank you for being one of the first 100 Mavens! Woo hoo! Maven is such a great program that I'm going to keep the letter so I can say I knew her when!

The first goodies: Julep Glycolic Hand Scrub, and samples of the hand scrub as well as their hand lotion. Squee! I do not take enough time in my routine to regularly exfoliate my hands, so I'm so happy to have the Glycolic Hand Scrub to get me in the habit!

Then, the coup d'etat of the package: Carrie, a "classic, cotton candy pink," and Alfre, a "royal metropolitan purple." Carrie is currently available on the Julep site, but Alfre will be released in September/October as a part of Julep's Fall 2011 Collection. How awesome is it to get Alfre ahead of her release? I love it! Julep Nail Therapy, a base coat, was also included with the 2 polishes.

I swatched Carrie and Alfre on a nail wheel, to give you a better idea of what the polishes look like:

(Julep Carrie, left; Alfre, right; with flash)

(Julep Carrie, left; Alfre, right; without flash)

And here's one more look at all of my Julep goodies.

Overall, I am ecstatic about everything I received in my Sneak Peak Box for August! Both Carrie and Alfre are colors I love, the hand scrub is a perfect addition to my beauty regimen, and I can always use basecoat that helps strengthen my soft, peeling nails. Julep gets an A+ in packaging and presentation, too. Can't wait to see what they have in store next month!

Don't forget - you can join Julep Maven for $19.99/month and receive over $40 worth of Julep goodies! This month's Sneak Peek Box included products valued at over $70, which was amazing!

What do you think? Did anything in this month's Sneak Peak Box pique your interest? And have you joined Julep Maven yet? If not, get thee to Julep's site now!

13 August 2011

Last Night's Nails: Nails Inc. Devonshire Row

Last Night's Drink: White wine (house)
Last Night's Nails: Nails Inc. Devonshire Row with Dior Rock Coat

Goooood morning! Welcome to your weekend! Did any of you kick the weekend off in a big way yesterday? A friend of mine won a party at Howl At The Moon in Universal City, so we all headed over there after work for cheap drinks, buffet food, and dueling pianos! If you've never been to a dueling piano bar - you need to go find one near you, STAT. They are so much fun! My hands-down favorite dueling piano bar will always be the Bar at Times Square in New York New York Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. I have great memories there, but Howl At The Moon is pretty awesome, too!

So for last night's mani, I started with Nails Inc. Devonshire Row. Devonshire Row is described as a "deep glossy lilac" which is pretty accurate. In bright sunlight it reads a lot more pink, but in artificial and low lighting it the lilac shines through. It has a creme finish and the great formula I love from Nails Inc. This is 2 coats of Devonshire Row:

Devonshire Row is very pretty on it's own, if a little delicate for my tastes. However, since we were going out, I needed it to have a little edge, so I whipped out a recent purchase, Dior Rock Coat. I purchased my first Dior polishes a few weeks ago, and one of the items other polish lovers had raved to me about was Rock Coat, a sheer gray layering polish meant to add edge to any mani or pedi. Take a look:

(index and middle finger: NI Devonshire Row; ring and pinky fingers: Dior Rock Coat)

(Nails Inc. Devonshire Row w/ Dior Rock Coat)

I am head-over-heels crazy about Dior Rock Coat! I love what it did for Devonshire Row, taking the polish from a bright summer's day by the pool to edgy with a slight vamp for the night. Expect to see Rock Coat making multiple appearances in the future here at Polish & Tonic!

Nails Inc. Devonshire Row is currently available at select Sephora locations and online at sephora.com (retails for $9.50/bottle). Dior Rock Coat was released this past spring as a part of the Dior Rock Your Nails Collection. It is a limited edition polish, so grab one while you can! If you can't find it in stores, it it's still available online at dior.com (retails for $19.50/bottle).

What do you think? Is Devonshire Row unique enough to keep on its own? Do you like the graying effect of Dior Rock Coat? What are your favorite polish layering combinations?

12 August 2011

Nails Inc Week: Hyde Park Gate

Happy Friday, Polish Fanatics! Anyone have exciting plans for the weekend? I'm heading out on the town tonight, but then three words will dictate the rest of my weekend: Must. Start. Packing. My big move is less than 3 weeks away - eek!

Today I have for you a bright polish Nails Inc. Hyde Park Gate. Hyde Park Gate was a limited edition release polish in the UK, so it didn't arrive stateside in the recent US launch. HPG is a bright green creme, so bright it's almost neon. This is not normally my style of color, but in the bottle it looked like it would be a soft minty green, a la Essie Mint Candy Apple. Was I surprised! While bright colors like this typically have streaking issues, I was able to get HPG on my nails with an easy 2 coats.

Just to give you an idea of HPG's near-neon finish, check this out:

It was so bright! I put HPG on before I went to last Saturday's Angels game vs. the Mariners in OC. It was a night game, but I wasn't sure what was illuminating the ballpark more - the overhead lights, or this polish. I already don't love greens on me, and HPG did not help their case. To the Helmer swap/share drawer it goes!

What do you think? It's too bright, right? Or do you like bright, neon finishes? And what polishes have you picked up that looked one color in the bottle, and was completely different on the nails (please, warn me!)?

11 August 2011

Nails Inc Week: St. John's Wood

It's Thursday, Thursday! Just a short hop, skip, and a jump away to the weekend!

Continuing with our Nails Inc. series this week, today I have for you Nails Inc. St. John's Wood. This is one of the most popular polishes from Nails Inc.'s line. St. John's Wood is described as a "soft powder lilac." I guess I think of lilacs as a much more paler color, as I see a lot of strong blue notes in this bold color. It reminds me more of a slightly lighter version of the blurples I reviewed a few weeks ago. St. John's Wood was easy to apply and had the same great Nails Inc. formula I've come to expect. My steady hand was back, which means these could have been 1-coat wonders, but I used 2 coats to really show the beauty of the color.

St. John's Wood was a tricky polish to capture on film - I took a lot of photos, but everything showed up much closer to blue than purple. This was the closest I could get to match the color, but it's still a hint too blue. It's a fantastic color - it's reminiscent of the purple color usually associated with all things Easter - bunnies, baskets, and egg hunts. I like St. John's Wood, but it is unique - it's bold, but not bold enough to be full of vamp/attitude/night-on-the-town edginess. It's feminine, but not dainty. It doesn't blend in enough to be safe-for-work, but there's nothing about it that offends the senses either. It is definitely a chameleon - and going back in to the international drawer in my Helmer for safekeeping in my collection!

What do you think? Have you checked out any of the Nails Inc. polishes yet at Sephora? Do you like these blue-purple shades? And do you have a color like St. John's Wood in your collection, one that I would call a 'jack-of-all-trades, but a master at none'?

10 August 2011

Nails Inc. Week/Pink Wednesday: Brook Street

Happy Hump Day! It's Wednesday, which means I'm officially allowed to start day-dreaming about my weekend and all it holds in store for me. Then I remember the only thing I need to be doing this weekend is packing my crap up, and I instantly wake from my daydream and am quite happy to be back in the cold harsh reality that is my office!

In celebration of Nails Inc. Week @ Polish & Tonic, and Pink Wednesday, I bring to you today Nails Inc. Brook Street. Brook Street is described as a "pure coral" but I see it much more as a bright pink creme with a coral tint. This was another 3-coat manicure as I had another unsteady hand; I'm thinking I may need to lay off the coffee for awhile. Right?

I am an instant fan of Brook Street! She was a bit bright for work, but a lot of fun to show off in the summer sun. However, when I was applying her, I had the sneaky feeling that maybe there was a dupe in my collection already, so I went to the Helmer to look for similar colors. I came up with Rescue Beauty Lounge Coral and Julep Natalie.

(RBL Coral; Nails Inc. Brook Street; Julep Natalie)

Here's a look at Coral, Brook Street, and Natalie on the nail wheel:

(RBL Coral; Nails Inc. Brook Street; Julep Natalie)

The verdict: RBL Coral and Brook Street are not exact dupes, but they are really really close. Coral had a little more red than Brook Street, but it's not really noticeable - I only saw it when I held the nail wheel swatch over my own painted nail. Given that Coral is more sheer and required a minimum of 3 coats on the nail wheel - which is a lot - I would recommend picking up Brook Street for your own personal collection. Julep Natalie was also close, but noticeably more orange than Brook Street. A casual polish fan probably doesn't need both Brook Street and Natalie in their collection, but for this addict, I'm keeping them both!

Brook Street was released as a part of the Spring/Summer '11 Collection and is available at select Sephora locations and online at sephora.com. Julep Natalie retails for $14 for a 0.27 fl oz bottle, and you can find it online at julep.com.

What do you think? Do you have any of these polishes, or anything else in the pinkish coral family? Can you even see the difference between these polishes, or have I just been sniffing too many polish fumes and need to get my head cleared?

09 August 2011

Nails Inc Week: Porchester Square

Happy Tuesday, Polish Fanatics!

As I mentioned in my post late yesterday, Nails Inc. polishes recently launched in the US! I am super excited that you all can now share in this brand, because they make fantastic polishes in great colors with buttery formulas. To celebrate the launch, I'm going to be reviewing Nails Inc. polishes all week to help you guys figure out which polishes you need to buy first!

For today's mani I have Nails Inc. Porchester Square. Porchester Square is a light taupe creme, a perfect nude for the work day. There is a light hint of lavender in the polish, but it's not overstated. Porchester Square is the lighter sister to the deeper mushroom taupes of last season, a la Chanel Paradoxal and Sally Hansen Commander In Chic. I'm not sure what was wrong with me when I did this mani, but I had heavy hands and needed 3 coats to smooth out some of the bumps. I've worn Porchester Square before, and it only required 2 coats then, so I chalk this up to operator error (read: I'm a ditz!).

(Nails Inc. Porchester Square; direct sunlight; no flash)

(Nails Inc. Porchester Square; shade; no flash)

(Nails Inc. Porchester Square; close-up; direct sunlight; no flash)

Is it any surprise to you that I am a fan of Porchester Square? It shouldn't be! This is the perfect shade for work; it's beautiful, fashionable, but not so loud as to draw a lot of attention at work - the perfect trifecta!

Porchester Square is currently available at select Sephora locations and online at sephora.com. If you're in the market for a pretty color for work, definitely check it out!

What do you think? Are you excited about Porchester Square? Have you ran to Sephora yet to pick up a few Nails Inc. polishes? If not, what in the world are you waiting for?!?!

08 August 2011

Nails Inc Comes to America!

Hello Everyone!

I heard the best news a few weeks ago, and have been waiting for the perfect time to share it with you all! Remember my recent trip to London and Paris? Well, when I was there, my primary goal (besides drinking like a local and shopping like I couldn't spell r-e-c-e-s-s-i-o-m) was to pick up one of the hottest UK nail polish brands, Nails Inc. I journeyed over to the Nails Inc. flagship store off Bond Street and had the best time with the ladies in the shop. They were impressed that I ventured out specifically to see them and buy some Nails Inc. polishes, and that I had brought packaging on my trip to safely ship my new beauties home with me. My Nails Inc. haul is still one of the highlights of the trip, but I was sometimes sad to sing their praises, knowing you all couldn't easily find the brand in the US.

Well, lo-and-behold, friends, your Nails Inc. deprived days are over! Nails Inc. polishes are now available in the US! How friggin' awesome is this! A few weeks ago Michelle at All Lacquered Up did a fantastic review of the Nails Inc. US launch - definitely check it out. To quickly summarize, Nails Inc. is on sale now at certain Sephora locations across the US and online at sephora.com. This initial launch includes 40 of their most popular colors, crystal cap colours (read: blinged out polishes!), special effects 3D glitters, and the current craze, crackle colors!

Nails Inc. polishes retail at Sephora starting at $9.50 for a 0.5 fl oz bottle. I kinda feel bad for our UK fanatics - Nails Inc. retails there for approximately £11 ($18USD), and I was really surprised by the low price point when the polish launched stateside. (Note to my UK readers: PLEASE venture to the Nails Inc. flagship store on South Molton Street - you can get such great deals there if you buy several polishes, way better than the £11 each pricing in department stores!)

To celebrate the arrival of Nails Inc. in the grand old U-S-of-A, we are going to celebrate Nails Inc. Week at Polish & Tonic! Yes, that's right my friends, all entries this week are going to be reviews of the fabulous colors from Nails Inc. - nudes and greens and blues and pinks, oh my!

I hope you all are as excited - or getting there! - as I am about Nails Inc. coming to the US. If you're not, you will be by the end of Nails Inc. Week! Hang around here for reviews on some of the US and UK exclusive colors, and when you see something you like, hop on over to Sephora to check out a few polishes - I promise you won't be disappointed!

07 August 2011

Last Night's Nails: Chanel Graphite

Last Night's Drink: London Pride
Last Night's Mani: Chanel Graphite

Hi Everyone! I had another post planned for today, but late last night a friend called and we decided to hit up my local bar for an hour or so before closing. I had a polish on my tips that I wasn't feeling, so I quickly acetoned it and reached for a new, sexy fall color - Chanel Graphite. Graphite is a metallic foil polish with hints of silver and gold. It really reminds me of pewter in color. This is my first Chanel polish (actually, my first polish ever over $20!) and I was curious about how the color would look on me. Graphite applied easily; I could have gotten away with 2 medium coats, but in order to get rid of all VNL, I applied 3 thin coats. Check it out!

(Chanel Graphite; direct sunlight; no flash)

(Chanel Graphite; in shade; no flash)

(Chanel Graphite; closeup; direct sunlight; no flash)

Chanel Graphite
is all kinds of WINNING! I absolutely adore this polish. It's a beautifully cool-toned metallic, but as you can see in shade, it flashes green/gold. Graphite was perfect for going out - I wore it with jeans and a cute black top, and dark/smokey makeup, and pewter/metallic flats. Kind of wish I had a photo of the full ensemble for you! The only problem I have is trying to figure out what polish to pair with Graphite on my toes - I was wearing a summer bright that obviously clashed, but I feel another metallic on the toes - like Chanel Peridot - would be too much metallic. Maybe a vampy dark?? I'm not sure. Going to have to play around with it.

was released as a part of the Chanel Illusions d'Ombres Fall 2011 Collection and is currently available at Macy's, Nordstrom's, and other Chanel counters, as well as chanel.com. Graphite is only available for a limited time, so if you like it, be sure to grab one up soon!

What do you think? Are you loving this mani? If you have Graphite, what pedicure color have you paired with it? Do you have any polishes from Chanel? And are you still in the mood for summer, or anxious to start wearing the fall colors, too?

06 August 2011

Announcing the Julep Maven Program!

Good Morning! I have another polish post coming to you later today, but this morning I wanted to catch you all up on one of the best new ideas in nail polish that launched this month, the Julep Maven Program! I have been singing the praises of Julep Maven to anyone who will listen to me all week, and now I want to share with my readers the latest opportunity to dig your tips and toes into Julep polishes!

Julep Maven is an opportunity for Julep fans to receive their own Sneak Peek Box that Julep sends out to beauty editors and celebrity trendsetters every month to showcase current favorites and upcoming products available from Julep. Yes, the same exact products send to editors at Vogue, W, InStyle, Marie Claire, and more! Each Sneak Peek Box is tailored to your unique style and preferences - when you sign up, you'll need to take a fun style quiz to help Julep understand your personal style, skin type, and beauty concerns. It's a totally fun quiz, I promise! (Although, it may stump you - how can anyone choose between Bradly Cooper, George Clooney, and Robert Pattinson?!? I wanted an option to select 'all of the above'!)

To give you an idea, I took the style quiz Julep determined that my personal style is "Classic With A Twist":

'Classic and elegant, this timeless look is most famous for beautiful yet simple cuts and colors. You love to wear fine, natural fabrics that accentuate your prestigious leather accessories, and you are most often drawn to polished sophisticated hues. This timeless, iconic look exudes effortless couture and is always profoundly in style.'

I thought this description matched my personal style perfectly! One of my favorite movies of all time is Breakfast At Tiffany's, and I love Holly Golightly's style - refined beauty, pearls, and of course the classic Chanel little black dress (I did quit the smoking, though!). I won't spoil the surprise for my readers who haven't taken the style quiz yet, but let's just say I am thrilled with the sample of colors Julep will include in the CWAT Sneak Peek Box, as well as the actual polishes and products selected for my first month. Look for a blog post next week once I receive my Sneak Peek Box, showing you all the goodies inside!

Julep Maven is an awesome value, as Maven members receive over $40 worth of product each month for just $19.99. And between the polishes, nail treatments, and or hand care products you'll receive, the program is definitely worth it (this month's box alone is worth over $70!).

You can sign up for Julep Maven by visiting the Julep website and taking a short style quiz. The quiz will help Julep determine what type of Maven you are, show you samples of colors that will be sent to you, as well as the goodies you'll receive in your first Sneak Peek Box. The August boxes are currently shipping and include one of Julep's new fall colors that will be released in October, so hop on over to Julep now to sign-up!

What do you think? Are you excited for the Julep Maven program? Do you like these subscription programs that let you explore a new polish brand? And if you signed up, what kind of Maven are you?

05 August 2011

The Untried Diaries: Julep Amy

Welcome to the weekend! Well, almost weekend. It's Friday! I am so ready to kick back and relax this weekend - just 9 (hopefully) short hours of work, and then I'm a free woman for a few days!

Today I have for you a mani I wore awhile ago, Julep Amy. Amy is described a "smoky turquoise", but I see a lot more blue in this polish than green to be a turquoise. It applied easily, as I've come to love from Julep polishes. It's very similar to the Butter LONDON formula and applies easily. You could probably get away with one thicker coat, as Julep polishes are so highly pigmented, but for this mani I applied 2 thinner coats of Amy. I apologize for the rough cuticles - I actually took these photos months ago, in my early days of blogging and before I stepped up my nail care routine. Oh, what a difference 6 weeks can make!

...and here's the close up:

Amy is definitely another winner from Julep! While this may not be the most original color I've ever seen, it's the only one I have in my collection and Julep's formula is fantastic. I've only ordered once from Julep, but Amy reminds me I need to do some more shopping at Julep for fall colors!

Amy is currently available online at Julep. Julep polishes retail for $14 for a 0.27 fl oz bottle. It's a little pricey (in comparison, Butter London is $14 for 0.4 fl oz), but I promise it's worth it!

What do you think? Have you tried Julep yet? Are you as in love with their formula as I am?

04 August 2011

The Untried Diaries: Essie Sew Psyched

Happy Thursday! One more day till the weekend! Got any interesting plans? I put in an application yesterday for a new apartment - squee! - and so will be doing my least favorite task this weekend - going through my stuff to figure out what to sell/donate/trash. Maybe even packing some initial boxes. The move is taking place at the end of August, so life is about to get really crazy!

It's green week over at my favorite nail forum, and to celebrate I dug through my untrieds to find my most safe-for-work green and came up with Essie Sew Psyched. To be honest, I'm normally not much of a green person; greens tend to have a lot of yellow in them (duh, yellow + blue = green, right?) and are warmer, meaning they don't look great on my cool-toned skin. However, in my recent obsession with the polish brand Rescue Beauty Lounge, I heard Sew Psyched is a dupe for RBL Diddy Mow. After spending hours looking at swatches on the internet, I agreed, and Sew Psyched quickly made its way into my stash.

Sew Psyched is what I would call a grayed-green with the hint of a light blue shimmer. You can't see the shimmer indoors, but it really picks up outside in direct sunlight. Sew Psyched is the color of seaweed in a clear ocean; a muted, but gorgeous. I've struggled with loving Essie as a brand recently due to watery and streaky formulas, but I am happy to report that Sew Psyched went on easily, no wateriness or streaking, and only needed 2 coats for full opacity. Take a look! (Note: both photos were shot indoors under artificial light)

And here's the closeup:

I am definitely into this color on me! Like I said, it's rare for me to find greens that I absolutely love on myself - this is only the 2nd time it's happened, the first being RBL No More War, which was just epic. Obviously Sew Psyched is a keeper, and my desire to find my own bottle of RBL Diddy Mow is renewed!

What do you think? Are you feeling this murky green? Do you know of any polishes with a similar murky quality? And what is up with the inconsistencies in Essie's formula? Have you figured out the rhyme to their reason?

03 August 2011

Pink Wednesdays: Zoya Areej

Good Morning! Oh, how I've missed you guys! I had a great long weekend in Virginia Beach with my family, but getting back to LA was heck on Sunday! First my flight from Norfolk to Charlotte was delayed due to storms, and then leaving Charlotte to fly to LAX we were delayed due to a disabled plane on the runway and later storms. I was delayed overall about 3 1/2 hours, crazy! It did make me realize, though, that I am so spoiled living in LA - it's not near any other airports, so we never have congestion issues with landing/taking off (like you have in NYC), and I've never had a flight delayed due to weather conditions. Aaah, there are so many benefits to west coast living!

Today we're celebrating Pink Wednesday with Zoya Areej. Areej is bright pink creme that has blue undertones. It applied easily in 2 coats, as I've come to expect from Zoya polishes. they really do have a great, consistent formula! I occasionally find 3-coaters with other salon brands, but not at all yet with Zoya. Take a look:

When I tried Areej on, I thought she looked familiar and I might have a similar color already in my collection. I dug around and pulled out one of my favorite pinks, OPI Dim Sum Plum, to see if I had a dupe on my hands. Check out the swatch below!

(Zoya Areej and OPI Dim Sum Plum; direct sunlight, no flash)

(Zoya Areej and OPI Dim Sum Plum; artificial light, with flash)

To my eye, in the direct sunlight they look identical. However, with artificial lighting and flash, I can see a slight difference. Areej looks at tad more blue than Dim Sum Plum. However, I don't think this is noticeable to most eyes, so for all intents and purposes I'm calling them dupes. I am a huge fan of Dim Sum Plum, which means Areej is likely going to make her way over to my share/swap drawer. She is a beauty, though, so maybe I'll change my mind!

Zoya Areej was released as a part of Zoya's Summertime Collection this summer. It retails for $8 per polish and can be purchased at Zoya.com (be on the lookout for promotions! they have them all the time) or in store at Ulta and other salon retailers.

What do you think? Do you think Areej and Dim Sum Plum are dupes? Which formula do you prefer, Zoya or OPI? And do you have any other colors from the Zoya Summertime Collection?