Tuesday, March 04, 2014

- - Julep | Cupid's Mystery Box | Makeup Lover Review - -

Happy Tuesday!

My Julep Cupid's Mystery Box arrived on February 25th - a mere 20 days after I placed my order and a mere 19 days after the order was shipped...yay! 

I'm being completely sarcastic - Julep's new shipping policy sucks. 

I've been reading what people have been saying and apparently the super fast shipping we all had before was actually a promo, which you now have to pay $5.99 for. The new standard shipping has unfortunately become DHL. I've actually only heard of DHL in passing before, but now I associate it strictly with pretty slow mail service. I used to get the mystery boxes while there were very few reviews online; now, I receive them well after everyone gets them. Grr. 

In any case, I was pretty happy to finally get my mystery box - even if I did already know its contents beforehand. Please read further for a closer look at the products inside...
Julep - Basic Info:
- - Frequency & Cost: $19.99/a month (price increases with add-ons) (referral link)
- - Products: at least two nail polishes and one beauty product 
- - Promo Code: use code FREEBOX or FREECOLOR to get your first box free! (small shipping fee applies)
- - Shipping Cost: FREE standard shipping (5 - 10 days)

If you'd like to know more about Julep, you can get more information here.

Previous Julep Mystery Boxes: Diamond, Naughty and Nice.  

* All the prices are in US dollars *

1 | Nail Polishes

Here's another view of the polishes with better lighting.

- - America the Beautiful | Sterling silver stars with shiny red and royal blue glitter | $14.00  $2.99 (On Sale!)
- - Lindy | Carnation pink iridescent glitter glaze | $14.00 (Non-Maven) / $11.20 (Maven) *
- -  Nan | Nantucket red crème | $14.00  $2.99 (On Sale!)

Lindy is a nail polish that was available only in this mystery box, so I'm going to assume that it has the regular $14/$11 value. One of the reasons why I was attracted to this box in particular was because of Lindy. Similar to Percy, Lindy is a flakie polish. 

When I saw Lindy in person, I realized that it's actually sort of tough to match it up with a base polish because it's got a sheer pink base with a multitude of colourful flakes. Below, I've matched Lindy with Judi, which is a English violet crème from Julep's Dramatic Collection. The effect is interesting, isn't it?

I have to admit, I cried silent tears when I found out that America was going to be in my box. It almost seems like Julep has tons of these polishes and they're trying to get rid of them now (I got America in the last mystery box as well). In total, if I hadn't given away one of the Americas during Christmas, I would be left with 3 of them right now.

      (Sample Size: 30 mL/1 oz for ~$5)
      (Full size: 85 g/3 oz for  $20.00 $16.00 (On Sale!))
Although this hand cream also appeared in the Naughty and Nice mystery box, I actually don't mind getting it again. I recently finished the full size bottle (still need to put up an empties post for February >.<), so I'm happy that I still have supplies to fall back on.

Here's how the full sized tube compares to the sample I received:

3 | Blank Canvas Mattifying Eye Primer | $22.00 (Non-Maven) / $17.60 (Maven)

With the way things are going, I think it's safe to say that by the end of the year I will probably own all of Julep's beauty products. I've seen this primer on the Julep website before, but I've never had a chance to try it. As some of you know, I don't use eyeshadows too often, so I'm not really sure how much use I'll get out of this product.

The colour of the primer is a bit stark compared to my skin tone. Blended in, the contrast isn't too terrible - especially if eyeshadows go over it. Since I wont be using eyeshadows anytime soon, I can't really tell you how great this primer does its job. What I can tell you is that is has pretty good staying power - regular soap and water couldn't get the swatch off of my arm!

4 | Julep Lengthening Mascara in Brown | $24.00 $12.99 (On Sale!)

This Julep mascara is another product that I've never tried before; although, I have seen it on the website since I signed up for Julep in October. It has been on sale for a really long time. I feel like these mascaras have probably passed their expiration date, so I will most likely be tossing this one out. 
I had an interesting experience when I tried taking out the wand. The mascara gave so much resistance when I was pulling it out! It could be due to the cold outside; or it could be because this mascara is just way too old now. In any case, I pulled the wand out and took a closer look at it. Because the bristles have such a strange shape, I actually thought that my pulling had broken some of the bristles off!

Looking it up online, I realized (with relief) that I hadn't actually broken anything off - this is how the wand is supposed to look like. I've honestly never come across this kind of wand shape before - where half is long and half is short. Have you guys? Here's another look at it:

Although I wear strictly black mascara, it doesn't really bother me that this mascara is brown because the colour isn't too prominent. Nonetheless, I think that I will be tossing this product out after all.

5 | Sweep Eyeshadow Palette: Neutrals | $24.00 (Non-Maven) / $19.20 (Maven)

This eyeshadow palette was first introduced in the Gliteratti Collection this past December. Since I knew ahead of time that I would be receiving this in my mystery box, I ended up giving my first palette to a friend of mine. As I mentioned above, I don't wear eyeshadows, so this has no use for me right now, but I have faith that it will come in handy soon. :)

To give you an idea of the size of the palette, I put it beside a Julep nail polish:


When I was swatching these, I found that the eyeshadows were a bit chalky, but they did have great pigmentation. They also came off really easily with water and soap.

Indoors - sunlight + flash
Indoors - direct sunlight / no flash

Overall, this box was okay. It wasn't too bad, but I can't say that I was completely in love with it. There's a very small part of me that wishes I had ordered the Aphrodite box - at least I might have used its nail polishes a lot more. (If anyone living in the US is interested, there's an Aphrodite box up on eBay right now for $20.)

I paid $24.99 for this box, which promised a $75 value. The contents ended up adding up to a value of $83.97 for non-Mavens  and $71.97 for Mavens. Despite not reaching the promised value in Maven pricing, both values did surpass what I had originally paid for this box.

What do you think of these products? I'd be interested in hearing your thoughts in the comments below!

Thank you for reading! -A.~

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