Manicure Monday: Lilac and Lace

HI all! Today’s manicure features a beautiful lilac shimmer paired with steel and silver lace accent nails.

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First, I put on three coats of Julep Elisa, which is a beautiful lilac with a fine shimmer.  The shimmer is almost imperceptible, and really just gives the solid color a shine boost.  I went with this color, which was oh-so-chic this past spring, because I wanted to celebrate the last few days of nice mild I-don’t-need-a-coat weather.

To give my manicure some extra personality (and because I was too lazy to do any nail art!) I used OPI’s Trend Tips in a steel and silver lace design on the ring finger.  Trend Tips are “real lacquer strips” which you peel and stick onto your nail, which allows you to have all sorts of patterns and effects that wouldn’t be possible in a home manicure.  Each set comes with several sizes which you can also cut and file to shape.  I keep my nails fairly long, but I find that one strip usually ends up covering two nails!  Plus, they’re really easy to put on when fresh, and last a long long time.  However, I like to keep mine for a while (you’re supposed to use them all when you open it!) to use as accent nails.  They tend to get dry and stiffen up after time, but a manicurist showed me a cool trick – just heat them gently and the strip will soften and the adhesive melts to stick nicely on your nails.

BOTTOM: Julep Oxygen Smoothing Base Coat

COLOR: Julep Elisa (lilac), OPI Trend Tips (sorry, it doesn’t have a color name!)

TOP: Julep Oxygen Performance Top Coat

Only for the month of September, sign up for Julep Maven and get a Limited Edition Fall Neutrals 4-Piece Welcome Box! That’s two times the size of the normal welcome box!

If you’re already a Julep Maven, use code FABFALL to get gift set free with $25+ purchase.

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Manicure Monday: Autumnal Braids

This week’s manicure features two polishes from Julep’s Art Walk collection, which I received in my August Maven box.  Summer is moving into Fall, so I wanted to go with something a little darker.

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Using Julep Mary Lee, a vampy oxblood, I first applied two coats of paint on every nail.  Mary Lee has a satin finish, which was a surprisingly nice effect, although I prefer a high gloss manicure.  But, after applying your topcoat, this satin finish gets covered, so I’m not sure when you would see it – because ladies, you should always use a base and top coat if you want a manicure to last more than a couple days.

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After, I grabbed Julep Erin, also from the Art Walk collection, and Julep Zelda, one of my favourite metallics, along with my base color to achieve a braided effect on my ring finger and thumb nails.  This effect  looks harder than it is, and if you follow cutepolish’s Youtube tutorial, you’ll master it in no time!

BOTTOM: Julep Oxygen Smoothing Base Coat

COLOR: Julep Mary Lee (burgandy), Julep Erin (grey), Julep Zelda (gold lame)

TOP: Julep Oxygen Performance Top Coat

For this month only, get the very special City Lights Welcome Box when you sign up for Julep Maven!  Or, if you’re already a Maven girl, use promo code FABFALL to get gift set free with $25+ purchase.

Samples Showdown: Exuviance

Today’s Samples Showdown features three products from the same company.  Awhile ago, Exuviance sent me a set of deluxe samples to try, which were the Performance Peel AP25, the OptiLight Essential 6 Serum, and the Evening Restorative Complex.  To be honest, I was a little scared of using the peel since I have sensitive skin, and also recently just recovered from some mad beach sunburn.

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EXCUVIANCE PERFORMANCE PEEL

Exuviance’s Performance Peel comes in two pouches, an activator pad and a neutralizer pad.  Upon opening the activator pad, I was hit in the face with some serious chemical smell that reminded me of a perm.  Thankfully, this went away after application, which was surprisingly gentle.  After a few minutes of leaving it on my face, the product became tacky to the touch, and my skin started tightening.  There was minor tingling, but redness or discomfort.  Following their directions, I removed the activator after 10 minutes using the neutralizer pad, and then rinsed with water.  Immediately I could feel that my skin felt smooth and firm.

THE VERDICT: If I’m ever shopping for an easy-to-apply peel, this would definitely make the list.  But I don’t think this is something I’ll need to buy for a long time.

EXCUVIANCE OPTILIGHT SERUM

I can’t say much about the OptiLight serum since I haven’t been using it long enough.  In terms of smell and texture, it’s unassuming but also not memorable.

THE VERDICT: Bleh.

EXCUVIANCE EVENING RESTORATIVE COMPLEX

This is a pretty nice moisturizer.  In a gel-cream formula, it feels light and absorbs quickly into the skin. It’s biggest downside is that it’s not quite moisturizing enough for my combination skin.

THE VERDICT: If you have oily skin, this will probably work for you as a nighttime moisturizer!

 

One Direction Miami Concert Experience Giveaway!!

Can you believe it? I have another giveaway for you, and this time it’s huge!!  Enter to win an all expenses paid trip to Miami to attend One Direction’s Where We Are North American Tour Finale, plus limited edition kits from Make-Up by One Direction!

The prize Winner will receive:

1) 2 Field Level Tickets to One Direction Final Concert Tour Date in Miami at Sun Life Stadium on October 5th, 2014.

2) 2 return trip economy tickets (within continental United States ONLY) to Miami.

3) Accommodations (1 Room) at the Turnberry-Isle Miami Hotel (http://www.turnberryislemiami.com/)

4) Ground transportation (to/from Airport and to/from Concert)

5) $300 AMEX Card for incidental expenses

6) 2 Autographed Make-up by ONE DIRECTION limited-edition collections of beauty essentials, housed in a collectible keepsake tin. Inside is everything you need to rock all your beauty looks on or off the stage. The 2 makeup tins will be randomly selected from the 3 available collections (Midnight Memories, Take Me Home, or Up all Night).

To learn more about The Looks Collection by One Direction, check out my review of one of the tins, “Up All Night.”

US RELEASE DATES:

Macy’s – August 11th
Stage Stores – August 25th
Dillards – August 25th
Beauty Brands – August 25th
Lord and Taylor – August 25th

ENTER HERE TO WIN!!

To keep up to date with the latest news, be sure to visit the official Facebook page.

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Manicure Monday: Suzi and Erin Bike Around Town

This week’s Manicure Monday features a manicure and a half (sorta!).
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I originally went with a really simple but sassy manicure with a fairy-dust pink, OPI’s Pedal Faster Suzi!  I’ll be honest – I totally picked this polish because of the fun name.  I did a bunch of biking when I was visiting Washington D.C. last week and wanted a polish that reflected my activity (although I have no idea what this shimmery pink has to do with pedaling!).

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Pedal Faster Suzi was great buuuuut after my August Julep Maven box showed up, I was dying to try out one of the polishes from their Art Walk collection ASAP.  The grey in particular, named Erin, caught my eye, and I decided to update my pink nails with a little bit of geometric flair.

For this month only, get the very special City Lights Welcome Box when you sign up for Julep Maven!  Or, if you’re already a Maven girl, use promo code FABFALL to get gift set free with $25+ purchase.

Julep Maven August Boho Glam Unboxing

Hi~! A few days ago I received my August Julep Maven box, in Boho Glam.  August’s collection is named The Art Walk, so of course, being an art historian, I had to have it.

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A cute thing Julep does is send little bonbons in every Maven box!

I’m really loving these colors for fall, and grey is one of my favourites year round.  I’m sure these two polishes, Erin (grey) and Mary Lee (burgundy) will star in one of my upcoming Manicure Mondays, so I won’t talk too much about them today.

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The plush pout lip crayon is an interesting hybrid.  It is a twist-style crayon, with a moisturizing core in the middle and lipstick on the edges.  First off, I know crayons are trendy, but I don’t see any advantages lip crayons have over conventional lipstick tubes, especially when they’re twisties and have a cap (if someone makes a capless crayon, then I’m on board).  The color and saturation of Plush Pout is really great, buuuuut that moisturizing core in the center really throws me off balance.  On one hand, with the moisturizing core, this is a nicely smooth medium-wear lip color.  On the other hand, the colorless core makes even application of the lip color tricky.  In my opinion, the way to achieve the most even coverage is by using a lip brush – which defeats the point of a carry-all crayon.    I’m not sure how much this Plush Pout retails for on its own, but as part of this fall set, I’m glad to have it.

If you love what you see here and want to sign up for your own fully customizable Julep Maven box or check out their full selection of great beauty products,  I have two great deals for you!

Only for the month of September, sign up for Julep Maven and get a Limited Edition Fall Neutrals 4-Piece Welcome Box! That’s two times the size of the normal welcome box!

If you’re already a Julep Maven, use code FABFALL to get gift set free with $25+ purchase.

Autographed Makeup by One Direction Giveaway!

Did you miss my last giveaway featuring Makeup by One Direction?  Luckily, to celebrate the launch of The Looks Collection, Markswins and Brandbacker are giving away more of these keepsake tins – and this time, they’re autographed by the band!

This could be yours!
This could be yours!

If you want to know more about the makeup inside the tin, check out my review of Up All Night, one of the three limited edition sets from The Looks Collection.

Up All Night
Up All Night
US RELEASE DATES:

Macy’s – August 11th
Stage Stores – August 25th
Dillards – August 25th
Beauty Brands – August 25th
Lord and Taylor – August 25th

ENTER TO WIN HERE

To keep up to date with the latest news, be sure to visit the official Facebook page.