Julep Kris & Julep Cheyenne

Today’s swatch post is two coats of Julep Kris topped with Essie Good to Go top coat, except the ring finger, which is one coat of Julep Cheyenne. These were the November 2015 Julep Maven Bombshell box colors, which I borrowed from my sister, since I skipped that month. (Application’s kind of messy, since I slapped these on in a rush before Thanksgiving preparations. Also, please excuse the tip wear – I didn’t have time to take photos until day two!)

In direct outdoor natural light:

Kris is described by Julep as a “[a]rctic iridescent chrome.” The polish isn’t what comes to mind for me when hearing the words “iridescent chrome,” but I guess I can see where they’re coming from. It’s a clear base suspended with super-shiny cool-toned silver shimmer particles – not especially densely so, but it’s buildable and semi-opaque in two thin coats, like in my photos. The shimmer particles are a bit chunkier than a typical shimmer and give a slightly textured effect, but it’s not quite chunky enough that I’d call it microglitter. The particles are a touch iridescent, but it’s not immediately obvious. The finish also isn’t a smooth metallic, like I associate with chromes. Instead, it strikes me as more of a slightly sheer/sparse foil, if that makes sense.

The formula was easy enough to apply, but as I’ve mentioned, it’s a tad sheer and could have maybe used a third coat for better opacity, though it looks fine with two. It also seems to have a longer than average dry time (unfortunately).

Another shot in direct sunlight:

Cheyenne is a brick-red matte metallic, which Julep describes as a “[a]uburn matte metallic.” The description is spot-on, though I found the color a tad more orange/brown-leaning than the swatches Julep posted. The formula was perfect on this one: applied carefully, it was opaque in one coat, and it dried fast! Gorgeous color overall.

In indirect sunlight (shade):

So shiny!

I liked both these colors pretty well. The slow dry time on Kris stressed me out before meal prep, but the shininess of the finish kind of makes up for it. No complaints whatsoever about Cheyenne.

Did you get a November 2015 Julep box, and how did you like your box?


Julep Aubrey

Julep Aubrey is a color from September’s It Girl Maven box, labeled as a “[r]osewood shimmer.” The color’s hard to describe, but if I were to give it a shot, I’d say it looks like a dusty, rose-leaning deep grape to me; a little too purple for a rosewood color, at least to my eye. The finish is a frosty metallic shimmer, and brushstrokes do tend to show, but somehow it doesn’t look bad with this color. Maybe it’s just because it’s been compared to a wood that I expected the brush texture, but it doesn’t bother me with Aubrey.

Here’s two coats in direct outdoor sunlight, topped with Essie Good to Go top coat:

And in the shade:

And, finally, in a combination of indoor fluorescent lighting and sunlight coming in from a window:

In person, I find that it’s usually got the warmer tones of the first photo in direct sunlight, even in indirect light. Formula was easy to work with, opaque in two coats, and dried in average time – no complaints. Durability is excellent, too. At this point, I’ve worn this polish for almost a week – five days, at least – and it’s just showing some minor tip wear and no chipping, even with the usual beatings my fingertips get from rigorous piano playing.

I actually like the color a lot more than I expected: a little edgy, almost vampy in some lighting conditions, and unlike any other color in my collection. Overall, I give Aubrey a thumbs up.

Disclosure: This post contains one or more referral links. I don’t expect you to use my referral links unless you want to, of course, and they don’t affect me giving my honest opinion. Referrals go toward products reviewed on this site – thanks!

Essie Leggy Legend

As soon as I saw Essie Leggy Legend from this fall’s rock era-inspired collection, I knew I had to have it.

This is two coats in outdoor natural light in overcast weather, topped with Essie Good to Go top coat:

Leggy Legend isn’t just any gold-toned polish. The color is a unique bronze-y, shimmery metallic with bright gold and rosy copper notes that I haven’t seen in any other gold-family metallic polish I own. I expect the multi-faceted color makes it adaptable to many skin tones. It’s also super shiny and overall amazing.

The formula is fantastic, too. Like most Essies I’ve tried, the consistency is very fluid, but it’s not as runny as some, yet goes on buttery smooth. It dries on the faster side, and requires only two coats for good coverage. Win! The shimmer particles do tend to show some mild brushstrokes, but it’s minimal if applied carefully. No complaints about the fairly standard brush.

Here it is again from another angle, also in outdoor natural light (still overcast), for more dramatic lighting:

The richness of this color – I don’t even know how to properly express how much I love it.

I snagged my bottle from CVS (regular $8.50) with a 25% off coupon for about $6.38 + tax. Probably not the lowest price you can get an Essie for, but I was dying to wear it. Worth it. :]

Julep Nicola

This year, I didn’t do particularly festive nails for Halloween – no time! I did put on Julep Nicola, though, for the glow-in-the-dark finish. 🙂

Nicola is a very sheer peachy apricot base loaded with iridescent glass-fleck-y micro particles. It’s way sheer, though – way more sheer than I anticipated from the marketing photos. Even at three coats, like shown in my photos, you can barely see the polish, except that it adds a little bit of a blush tint to the nail, as well as the lovely iridescent sparkle and glossy sheen. It’s a subtle beauty, but definitely not for people who hate sheer polishes.

This is taken in strong direct outdoor natural light:

The consistency is fine, but it has a weird, strong skunky smell (blech) and seems to take longer than average to dry. Be prepared to sit tight – and maybe hold your hands away from your nose – especially if you use more than one coat of this polish!

Another angle in strong direct outdoor natural light:

The iridescent flakes stand out more in slightly less direct outdoor natural light. They mostly flash cyan to pink for me:

The peachy tint is nice, but it does make the whites of the nails look discolored.

I couldn’t snap a photo of the glow-in-the-dark effect because my phone camera couldn’t capture it. It does glow visibly greenish yellow in the dark, though.

Nicola is a pretty polish, but it’s a little more sheer than I typically like in a polish – almost more of a nail perfector, though blingy. The smell and long dry time are also not my favorite. Maybe it’ll be good layered over something else; I might experiment with that later on. Ultimately, I’m not sure it was the best use of my $6.99 (it was an add-on for my October 2015 Julep Maven box). I certainly don’t hate it, though.

Did you pick up Nicola? What did you think?