Julep Maven is another box that both Jill and I pay for and enjoy each month so it’s time for another joint review! For those of you new to Julep Maven, for $25 a month you receive a box of a few nail polishes or beauty products. When you first join Maven, you take a style profile quiz which will then assign you a default box that you will receive every month. However, you aren’t locked into that choice! Once the Maven window opens, you are able to view your box, choose a different box, and maybe customize and pick different polishes and add-ons. Suffice to say, this is a fun box.

For me, this December box is one of my favorites I have had in a long time. I actually chose a box that was makeup heavy because I had been eyeballing The Dancing Lipstick Mini Trio for weeks but I hadn’t quite decided to buy yet. The box also came with their Oxygen Performance Top Coat (which I really like), gold stripe decals and the color Logan. I added on the Satin top coat because I like a matte-er finish in my polishes sometimes so I was glad they created the top coat to give me more options so I wouldn’t be limited to their Satin polishes.

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But let’s get to the good stuff: the lipstick. Before I can get into how much I love these colors I need to tell you about my quest to find the perfect dark berry-almost black lipstick. This has been an ongoing search for me for the past two years or so. I got it in my head that I wanted a lipstick that was almost black but still pretty and I’ve been failing on this quest til now. Most lipsticks I see that are dark like I want turn out to be sheer and I’m not into that! I want to go almost goth here. (Now, whether this is a good look for me is yet to be determined, but I have had this idea in my head for a long time.)

Finally, I received this lipstick trio and all my lipstick dreams are coming true. I am having issues getting my camera to get my pictures the right color and I am going to work on that in the new year but you can get the general idea here. This lipstick set embodies the trends of the season: dark berry, velvet-y matte shades. Heartbreaker was my goth-girl lipstick dream come true and I just love it so much. I am trying to think of an occasion where this will be appropriate and I think I am just going to have to create one. Maybe a girls night. While I immediately tore into Heartbreaker, Beau is a really nice dark berry shade also. I think it’s probably a bit more wearable for more people who don’t have dreams to be fake goth like I do.

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From left: Siren, Beau, Heartbreaker

 

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Heartbreaker, Beau, Siren

 

 

I wanted to take another picture for scale so you could see just how mini the mini lipsticks were. I put one next to my full size Logan that I received this month. (Which I love so much as well. I am just overwhelmed by these lipsticks right now it is hard to focus on anything else.)

IMG_1107.JPGI know Jill really loved her box this month also so I will turn it over to her so we can see what she got this month!


 

Thanks to Lauren’s excellent review of the lipsticks above, I actually just went and bought myself some. Julep is currently doing a 12 Days of Gifting sale (every day for the next week or so, there will be another sale. Worth checking out!)

Anyway, about my Julep box.

This month I bit the bullet and decided to upgrade to their customizable option. I liked a lot of this month’s collection but I didn’t love the boxes they came up with. FYI, I was grandfathered into an older version of their Maven program, which was $19.99/month. The customizable box, which lets you (on a somewhat limited basis) swap out different polish colors and beauty items for the ones in the pre-set style boxes, is $24.99/month for me. I opted to pre-pay for 3 months to keep my price at $19.99/month, so there’s not much of a price difference except for paying up front.

The Countdown Collection. AKA Countdown to Glitter Town.
The Countdown Collection. Countdown to Glitter Town.

I typically hate glitters and shimmers. I am a total creme finish girl, those flashy finishes generally rub me the wrong way. I must be in the holiday spirit or some crap because this month I was all about the glitters and shimmers! They looked great online, and I am pleased to report that they look even better in person.

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L to R: Sharna, Sawyer, Top Coat

My box included Sharna, a “bronze-dipped full-coverage microglitter”, whatever that means. It basically looks like a mix of gold and bronze glitter, and it fully coats your nail. It is so far my favorite polish in this box. LOOK HOW PRETTY:

Hot damn, those nails do sparkle.
Hot damn, those nails do sparkle.

The other polish in my box was Sawyer, which is described as a “copper patina molten,” which means absolutely nothing to me. It looks like a bronze-maroon hybrid with some shiny things in it. I haven’t used it, but the bottle seems to support my theory. The last item is the Oxygen Performance Top Coat, which is hands down the best top coat I’ve ever used. It dries mega-fast and it does not chip. It really is great.

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Add-ons

In addition to my box, I added on 3 items: the gold stripe nail decals that Lauren also got, a polish, and a sharpener for Julep’s gel eyeliners. The polish is Nell, and it was only offered as an add-on (even for us customizing our boxes – I told you the privilege is limited). Nell is described as a “blushing holographic full-coverage glitter” – which is uber-helpful. It’s pink and sparkly. The end. Pink sparkles is generally the opposite of anything I’d ever want to paint myself with, but there was a 24-hour period during which I thought I wanted this. I will probably never wear it.

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Thanks, I guess.

 

As a reward for buying 3 add-ons, Julep throws in a fun little gift. This month the gift was the one thing they can’t seem to even give away because nobody wants it. It was free, so I can’t complain too much. It’s a flesh-colored lip plumper, which sounds like something I would never buy. Maybe I’ll give it a whirl, I do now own it after all.


Lauren: I am rating this month an A+. I love everything I received and I am going to be using the heck out of those lipsticks throughout the rest of the season. I love Logan and I feel like it pairs well with these darker lipsticks. I am terrible at nail art but I may give those gold stripes a whirl and I am almost out of my current bottle of Oxygen top coat so I needed another.

Jill: I am also rating this box and A+. I guess it would be sad if I paid extra to customize the box and then rated it anything less. I am always down for this topcoat, and the glitters this month were so great that even I loved them. Well done, Julep.

If you are interested in becoming a Julep Maven like the cool kids (aka us) click this link!  And Julep uses ebates! Are you using ebates yet? Do you just hate free money? Stop hating money and sign up for ebates here.

 

 

A self-proclaimed beauty junkie/hoarder with a serious Sephora problem. After years with Birchbox, she now has a subscription box problem as well. Her free time is a mixed combination of cats, TV, and finally trying to figure out how to do her hair.

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