While wandering through nail art blogs and videos online, I've come across Julep nail polishes a number of times. I think it was watching videos by Elleandish (Janelle) on Youtube that really made me see how gorgeous Julep polishes can be.
When I came across Julep's offer for a free introductory box to Julep's Maven Box Club, I jumped on it. I figured I could always cancel the subscription or skip months down the road if money remains tight. In the mean time, I could try out some new nail polish, right?
So, What is a Julep Maven?Julep Maven is a nail/beauty good box subscription in which, for $19.99 a month, you are sent $40+ worth of productions which are determined by whatever profile you subscribe to. You will receive either 3 full-size nail polishes (It Girl profile), 2 polishes and a beauty good (Boho Glam, Bombshell, Classic with a Twist profiles) or 2 beauty goods (Modern Beauty profile). You will also receive 20% off and free shipping on future orders, access to special add-ons and the secret shop. You're able to cancel your subscription at any time, and between the 20th and 24th of each month, you can change your profile choice or skip the month if you decide the colors aren't for you or if you can't afford it that month.
My Box arrives!
|My little treasure box|
I signed up for Julep Maven on the night of 12/24, so obviously didn't expect much of anything to happen right away due to the holiday. I received a shipping notice on 12/26 (no tracking number). Nail polish can typically only be shipped via ground due to hazmat restrictions, so, thinking that it was shipping from Seattle, I didn't expect it for at least a week. Imagine my surprise when it arrived via USPS on the morning of 12/28! The Julep website says that they have a fulfillment center in Glassboro, NJ - about a half hour drive away - but the shipping label seems to indicate that it was shipped all the way from Seattle! That's some pretty amazing shipping time for a few thousand miles.
My Maven Profile
|The contents of my box (sans invoice, of course)|
Taking the Julep Maven style quiz, I was classified as either a Boho Glam or Bombshell, dependant upon which questions I got. However, as I'm interested in the nail polishes rather than the beauty goods, I opted to go with It Girl, which comes with 3 nail colors. I also opted for an add-on polish (Blakely) for $4.99 at checkout. They charge shipping on your introductory box, so I got everything pictured for a whopping $8.98 including shipping.
What's in the Box?
|Nestled safely in the box|
The box is well-packed, with crinkly paper packing material holding everything in place. In fact, it appears that all of the packing material is paper and thus recyclable, if that is something which is important to you. Nestled in the bird's nest of paper are the three polishes that form the of the It Girl collection. Also included was as my add-on and a bonus sample of Blank Canvas, Julep's mattifying face primer.
The Whole Package
|Julep It Girl colors held together with a cardboard sleeve|
Each bottle of nail polish is encased in its own little cardboard box, and the three collection colors come bound together in a cardboard sleeve. The packaging is sleek and stylish, adding a sense of specialness to the polishes over drug store brands.
A Closer Look at the Julep Maven "It Girl" Colors
|Julep Nail Polishes in their packaging|
So, what did I get? The current offerings in the Julep Maven It Girl introductory box are:
Libby - "Rich teal creme." LOVE this color - so much I put it on within hours of my box arriving. Expect a review of it soon!
Bunny - "Crisp white linen with fine gold shimmer." Really pretty and subtle in the bottle, but reviews on the website seem to be mixed. I might have to try it and see.
Elle - "Plum frost." A gorgeous deep plum that has almost magenta undertones. Since there are only two reviews on the product page from 9 days ago, so far, I'm guessing that this is a newer addition to the Julep family.
As I mentioned already, I also opted for an add-on:
Blakely - Described on the site as "purple and green molten," the color is pretty amazing in the bottle and shifts between green, purple and gunmetal. I can't wait to try it out!
|Sorry that the photo is slightly out of focus! The one with all four colors was even worse|
At 8ml/.27 fl oz per bottle, Julep's polishes ARE on the smaller and pricier side for a standard size nail polish. For comparison, OPI polishes are 15ml/.5 fl oz and retail for $9. China Glaze is also 15 ml/.5 fl oz and retails for about $7. Per volume, full-priced Julep polishes are twice the price for half the amount.
I probably would be hesitant to pay full price ($14 /$11.20 Maven price) but I'm happy to get them for the price of the box. While, yes, there is less in the bottle, I seldom - if ever - actually finish off a bottle and the breadth of color is pretty amazing in the collection.
While, in volume, the size of many brands' mini-size, the bottle doesn't APPEAR that small. It's tall and thin , though, which makes me worry a bit about tipping the bottle while using it. This is mostly reserved for future reviews, but I painted my nails with Libby earlier and found that the polish also tends to cling to the stem of the brush since it's so long. Thus, when you go to paint, you risk a big drop paint of drop as it runs down the brush.
In line with the recent movement to rid nail polishes of toxic ingredients, Julep's products are also "4-free," meaning that they don't contain formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, toluene or Dibutyl Phthalate (DBP).
|"Swatch Me!" labels|
A cute surprise was the "Swatch Me!" labels affixed to the cap of each bottle. How many times have you tried out a polish only to find that it looks different on your nail than in the bottle? This was a clever little addition. The only problem is that because the stickers are affixed to the cap, you have to either peel off the label to swatch the color, or use another brush to paint on it.
For a (pretty much) free box, I really can't complain! I'll see if the subscription is worth it in the upcoming months, so I'll reserve final judgement until them. I have a ton of polishes from Julep's end-of-year warehouse sale headed to me, so I'll have a ton of colors to review then!
How about you?
I'm always looking to learn more about everyone else and what they think. Are any of you Mavens or have you used Julep nail polish? What do you think? What are your favorite nail polishes? What should I try next?