Sally Hansen Satin Glam Chic Pink & Orly FX Milky Way

I wanted to swatch something bright and spring-colored this week, so I went with Sally Hansen Satin Glam Chic Pink and Orly FX Milky Way.

This is two coats of each, with Chic Pink on all nails except for Milky Way on the ring finger, no top coat on the Chic Pink and Seche Vite over Milky Way, in indirect sunlight:

And in direct sunlight, to better show the glass-fleck sparkle in Chic Pink:

Chic Pink is a pearlescent candy-pink jelly packed with fine glass-fleck shimmer. It dries to a yummy-looking squishy, matte texture that reminds me of gummy candies. At two coats, it’s still a little sheer, but I don’t mind. The formula is good, and the brush is a flattened, slightly wide type that I didn’t have any trouble using.

Sally Hansen’s Satin Glam polishes are in the same 0.33 fl. oz. teardrop-shaped bottles that the Lustre Shine polishes come in, except with a duller gray/silver cap. There are seven other colors in the series with a similar texture, too, but this is the only one I’ve picked up so far. I think this retails for about $6 at my local CVS, but I bought it with a coupon for significantly less.

Milky Way is from Orly’s spring 2014 Galaxy FX collection and looks to me like a milky cool-white base with turquoise micro glitter, small round orange glitter, and larger silver-white holo hex glitter. The formula on this one was weirdly chunky and stringy, at least from my bottle, but I didn’t have any problems applying it in the end. The glitters distributed pretty densely and evenly on their own and didn’t need too much dabbing.

I was really looking forward to the Galaxy FX polishes since late last year, but I had a little difficulty finding them in stores, even though they were supposed to be available since January this year. Thankfully, they were easy to find on the Internet – and for almost half the regular $9 or $10 each they normally retail for, at that.

Both polishes dry relatively fast and have managed to survive a normal day without noticeable chipping or tip wear so far. Not bad.

Julep Shannon

Since I got my Julep Lucky Mystery Box on Thursday, I’ve been dying to try Shannon, the pale minty silk finish polish that was guaranteed in my box. I must admit, I bought the box mostly for Shannon.

Let me tell you, it was worth it.

This is three coats, no top coat, direct sunlight:

The formula is a little sheer, and like with Noelle, the brush strokes are sort of obvious until it dries – especially if, like me, you’re too excited about trying new colors and not always super careful. It dries super fast to a pearly, silky matte, though, and application is great. The dry time was even faster with the Ta Da! Quick Dry Drops, which do double duty as cuticle moisturizer. (They’re slowly growing on me, even if they don’t speed up the dry time by all that much.)

In indirect sunlight:

Ah, this color is so refreshing. I’m telling you, I just can’t get enough of mint green, and this one’s paleness and texture gives it such a delicious, sugary mint frosting look. Yum!

All right, so I was also less than careful with my application today because I’ve got a fierce case of the hunger shakes, but I really do think Shannon looks pretty yummy.

Did you pick up a Julep mystery box this month, and if so, which exclusive polish caught your eye?

UPDATE 3/22/14: Good durability on this polish. It lasted about five days without chipping.

BaubleBar x Anthropologie Ixora Blossoms Necklace

Remember when I mentioned how awesome Baublebar’s customer service is?

Well, BaubleBar randomly sent me a surprise package on a rainy day toward the end of last month. At first , I thought it was some gifts I’d ordered from them the previous day, but the shipping time seemed impossible. It turns out they’d sent me their BaubleBar x Anthropologie Ixora Blossoms Necklace completely out of the blue.

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It even came with a nice handwritten note:

Hi [Lacquerfiend] –

As soon as I saw this piece from our new Anthropolog[ie] collection, I immediately thought of you. It’s a little thank you for all your support!

xo Kirby [from BaubleBar’s SWAT Team]

What a lovely surprise – thank you! It’s beautiful:

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The Ixora Blossoms Necklace a versatile accessory that I can see going well with a variety of outfits, and it’s excellent quality for fashion jewelry. It’s got some weight to it, too. The sturdy chain is 33 inches long and what looks like antiqued brass, with clusters of translucent, tomato-red beads that remind me more of chilies strung up to dry than flowers. They rattle softly when you move.

I’ve gotten so many compliments wearing this necklace around.

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Hey, look, it even goes well with my nerd hoodie on weekends. :]

I love the combination of bright, sheer color with a heavier, almost industrial-looking brass chain. It’s a just-right balance of delicate and tough.

The Ixora Blossoms Necklace retails for $48.00 at Anthropologie and is part of a larger collection themed around exotic flowers.

Note: I wrote this post of my own initiative. BaubleBar likely doesn’t know I keep a blog and sent me this necklace without any request for review or advertisement.

Face-off: Revlon Top Speed Crystal Glow vs. L’Oreal Bananarama Love

Woo! Third post of the night. Almost caught up now. I’ll try to make this a quickie.

Here’s a comparison of Revlon Top Speed Crystal Glow and L’Oreal Bananarama Love (from L’Oreal’s Miss Candy collection from summer 2013).

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I really like yellow polishes, but I’m kind of picky about them. I ended up buying these polishes on the cheap on clearance (Crystal Glow for $2.99, and Bananarama Love for $2.39, or something like that) at different times because they both have that kind of lemony, banana-y, eggy yellow that looks yummy to me. I didn’t even know they were jellies (bonus!) at the time, but the color really attracted me.

Here’s four coats of Crystal Glow (index and ring) and four coats of Bananarama Love (middle and pinky), no top coat, in warm-white incandescent lighting:

As you can tell, they’re both very sheer, but Bananarama (middle and pinky) is way sheerer. They’re otherwise almost identical in color. It reminds me of Chinese egg tarts – yum! (I’m getting hungry just thinking about them.)

I’m drooling. (Image from Foodspotting.com, source linked.)

I really love the squishy, milky-acrylic jelly look, though the sheerness might not appeal to everyone, especially with how many coats it takes just to see the color. Both had average to somewhat long dry time, and even though I waited a long time between coats, by the third and fourth coat, the polish wasn’t really wanting to completely dry. I waited at least two or three hours before going to bed after painting my nails, but I guess it wasn’t enough. I even used my Julep Ta da! Quick Drops, which helped a bit but didn’t completely prevent the polish from smudging while I was sleeping.

In cool-white LED lighting (which makes my fingers look unnaturally purple!):

I bet these polishes would be great for jelly sandwiches. I’ll post some pictures if I try it one day.

Anyway, I think these polishes are similar enough that you don’t need both. They both take around four coats (and a lot more patience than I typically have) to look the way I like, but of the two, Crystal Glow gets my vote because it’s slightly more opaque.

Revlon Sun Candy Sun Shower & Julep Missy

Somehow, the yummy neon pastel colors of Revlon’s Sun Candy polishes never fail to catch my eye when I’m at my local CVS. They’re dual-polish sets similar to Revlon’s Moon Candy series, except in brighter colors for spring and paired with iridescent glitter toppers instead of flakies.

My sister is apparently a mind reader and picked up Sun Shower for me, which happens to be my favorite of all the colors. Here’s two coats of the creme side as a base and a dabbed-on slight gradient with the glitter side of Sun Shower on all fingers, except for two coats of Julep Missy on the ring finger, all topped with Seche Vite.

Sun Shower‘s bright pastel teal creme polish is a bit streaky and chalky on the first coat, but it at least mostly evens out by the second coat. The formula is on the watery side but manageable if you’re careful. The slightly turquoise-tinted glitter is pretty typical for its type: a little thick but easy enough to dab on. The color of the sheer base doesn’t really show on the nail. The dichroic green-to-blue flash of the glitter reminds me of mermaids and swimming pools, and it pairs really well with the creme it comes packaged with.

My only real beef with Sun Shower is that it wasn’t very durable on me and chipped pretty terribly within a day or two, even with my usual regimen of Orly Bonder underneath and Seche Vite on top. Kind of a bummer.

On the other hand, Missy, survived virtually unscathed over the course of the week. Granted, it was on my ring finger, which seems to get the least wear, but Juleps can usually take a lot of punishment, from my experience. Like other Julep foils I’ve tried (e.g., Sienna, Margot, et cetera), Missy has a great formula and goes on super smoothly and opaquely. It’s a neutral- to cool-toned silver and is super shiny, even without top coat. I kind of love it. Missy was from last October’s Julep Maven box.

Day two, I was already starting to see significant tip wear on Sun Shower:

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Still, it was pretty while it lasted – way sparklier than these photos would suggest! My phone couldn’t quite capture it.

My sis and I did matching nails that week. She used Revlon Sun Candy Fiery Sky and Wet ‘n’ Wild Fergie Grammy Gold (I think – I’ll correct this later if it’s wrong) for a warm version of mine. She had the same durability issue with Fiery Sky, but we both liked the bright, sugary colors enough that we didn’t care that much.

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Have you tried any Sun Candy colors? If so, what did you think?

Julep Lucky Mystery Box with Shannon – It Girl

Today’s going to be a major blog-post catch-up day. First up is Julep’s March 2014 mystery box, the Lucky Mystery Box, which shipped super fast and arrived yesterday, something like two days after my order.

Julep released four choices for this box, one with Shannon, a “pale minty silk”; one with Aislinn, an “edgy black with green glitter”; one with Taryn, a “deep sea teal holographic glitter”; and one 100% mystery that didn’t guarantee a new exclusive polish. Each box went for $24.99 and promised at least four times its cost in full retail value ($100+).

Julep’s been doing their mystery boxes differently lately, and I wanted to see how this one worked, especially since I haven’t picked up a Julep mystery box in a good long while, and the contents make for great random gifts. I also wanted Shannon because I’m a sucker for mint green (it’s one of my favorite colors), and I like the textured silk finish.

The box that came in was huge, so I was pretty hopeful at first, but it turned out half of it was just packing material. Bummer! No iPad Mini for me this time.

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Here’s what I ended up getting:

  • 3 oz. Glycolic Hand Scrub ($23.00 regular, $18.40 Maven)
  • Kennedy, a “[k]haki crème” ($14.00 regular, currently $3.99 on sale)
  • Tatiana, a “[g]olden burnt orange microglitter” ($14.00 regular, currently available for free with a $10+ purchase)
  • Shannon, the aforementioned “pale minty silk” (presumably $14.00 regular and $11.20 Maven)
  • Sabrina, a “[z]esty orange shimmer crackle” ($14.00 regular, currently $2.99 on sale)
  • Blakely, a “[p]urple and green molten” ($14.00 regular, $11.20 Maven)
  • Fiore, an “[e]spresso brown crème” ($14.00 regular, $11.20 Maven)

The total maximum value is $107.00, but realistically, going by the lowest prices, the box is worth more like $58.98, or about 2.4 times the cost of the box. Three of the six polishes were doubles, but they’re colors I love, so that’s fine by me. It’s not a bad box, but it’s not the most exciting mystery box I’ve gotten from Julep.

I also picked up the Lucky Mystery Add-On, which was $9.99 for a $42.00 value. I wanted to try out the bigger Major Mystery Add-On, which was $14.99 for a $63.00 value, but they were sold out at the time. They seem to be back in stock as of this writing, but I guess it’s just as well. Saved me some money.

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Here’s what I got:

  • Rose, a “juicy watermelon red crème” ($14.00 regular, $11.20 Maven)
  • Grace, a “[c]lassic ‘go-to’ light pink sheer” ($14.00 regular, currently $6.99 on sale)
  • Sienna, a “[s]ophisticated, shimmery gold” ($14.00 regular, $11.20 Maven)
  • packet of forget-me-not seeds (this was a freebie with a Maven box last year, so I’m going to consider it free)

That makes for a maximum total value of $42.00, as promised, and realistically for a Maven, a value of $29.39, still 2.9 times its cost.

It’s a decent deal, as usual, but also as expected, the boxes seem to be where much of the clearance stuff goes, and if you’ve stuck with Julep for a while, you’ll probably get a fair share of duplicate colors. As long as you go into the purchase understanding that, you probably won’t be disappointed. These boxes are great for starting a collection, though, if you’re new to nail polish or Julep.

By the way, when I looked at the invoice this time, I didn’t see a version number like with previous mystery boxes I ordered, so I’m guessing there was only one version of each mystery box. Did any of you get this box, and did you get the same items as me?

Julep March 2014 Maven Box: The Riviera Collection, Modern Beauty (with promo codes)

My Julep Maven March 2014 box came in today! Peach tissue paper and blue/purple scrunchy shredded paper this time:

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The freebie this month was a Gilliam old-fashioned candy stick. (Mine was cinnamon flavored. What about yours?) We also got a promo code for 35% off the Luxury Lipcare Duo (use LIP35), which is $44 regular and $35.20 Maven – not terribly useful for me, since I got that exact duo in my box – and 25% off Julep lip gloss (use GLOSS25), which are $16 each.

Looks like Julep’s running out of inspirational quotes this year or something. Instead of a quote, we get a blurb that just says “You know all those things you’ve always wanted to do? You should go do them.” I guess that’s all right, but I really prefer their past tradition of using quotes from notable women. Those were at least somewhat educational or thought-provoking in that they sometimes prompted me to go dig up info on and learn about the people quoted. I also miss the blurb Julep used to include about the inspiration behind their collections.

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I’ll be brutally honest with you guys – I wasn’t super excited about this month’s selections at first. It’s not that there’s anything wrong with the colors, but other than Lizanne (the “[s]ea green shimmer”) and Tania (the “[m]ultidimensional mermaid teal glitter”), they were either really close to colors I already have or just not particularly up my alley. As for the lip glosses, well, I have uber-sensitive skin, so I’m usually allergic to lip glosses, and I’m not usually big on makeup in general.

Because I waffled for a while, by the time I made my selection, Tania was already sold out, so I just went with the Modern Beauty box, which included the Buff Lip Scrub Pen and Luxe Lip Conditioning Treatment. I also added on Lizanne, which turns out to be a peacock teal/green (a bit bluer-toned than it looked in the promo shots on my monitor, but not quite as blue in person as it looks in my photo above) with very subtle shimmer. Maybe it’s just me, but it reminds me of Ariel‘s mermaid tail.

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I know I just said I usually have issues with lip products, and it’s true. I thought I’d go ahead and try these anyway, though, because the ingredient lists are slightly different from other products I’ve had issues with, and these are more skincare-related and usable for someone who likes to go makeup-naked.

The Buff Lip Scrub Pen ($20 regular, $16 Maven, for 0.08 fl. oz./2.4 mL) has a velvety applicator similar to a doe foot, and the pen dispenses product from the center when you turn the bottom dial. Once it’s primed, it seems to dispense enough for one lip (bottom or top) per click, and it has a pleasant light, peachy scent. I followed the directions on the box (massage over lips and tissue off) but it didn’t seem to exfoliate much for me somehow. I can see how this would be convenient to carry around, but I find Julep’s Sugar Smooch Lip Scrub works significantly better.

The Luxe Lip Conditioning Treatment ($22 regular, $19.20 Maven, for 0.42 oz/12 g) also has a yummy smell that reminds me of snickerdoodles. The cool metal applicator is actually pretty soothing, as advertised, and the product has a frosting-like consistency that, when applied, leaves a shiny finish like a lip gloss or Vaseline. It feels moisturizing, but I can’t tell if it does more than plain Vaseline at this point. It’s definitely a plus that I smell like I just ate cookies, though. 🙂

It’s too soon to tell if I’m going to be allergic to these things, but since I think I’m an outlier in this case, I’m going to leave my reviews as is for the rest of you.

Did any of you get this month’s Julep box, and what did you think?