Thursday, April 4, 2013

Julep Maven: Intro Box Review

I have been looking into beauty subscription boxes recently and after reading many reviews and going over different companies' websites, I finally decided on joining Julep Maven. This is a review of the "Intro Box" I received and my overall experience with the service thus far. Click the jump to read more!
(*disclainer: I purchased these products myself and have not been endorsed in any way to write this review)

If you haven't heard of Julep already, they are a company mainly known for their nail polish and related nail care/mani/pedi products. I first heard of their nail polishes from Sephora (retail $17.50). I have also seen many nail artists use the polishes as they are very true-to-color and the opaque colors can be opaque in one coat. The price, for 0.27 oz (smaller than most other companies) can seem steep, but that's where the Maven program comes in!
For $19.99 (shipping included), each month Julep puts together a box of 2-3 FULL-sized products, which can include nail polish and/or other related products depending on your Maven profile (mine is "Classic with a Twist"). The best thing about their program that beats other beauty subscriptions, is that they allow you to SKIP months if you want to, either because you are not into any of the selection that month, or for whatever other personal reason.  Other beauty subscriptions may let you send your box to a friend at best, but most don't give an option in this area.  I know many subscribe to boxes liking that "surprise" feeling when they receive their box, but unfortunately there can be a lot of disappointment if the products inside are just not suitable for you.  Even worse, as has been the case with some companies, people have received expired. discontinued, or obviously-drugstore-clearanced products. So overall the main reasons I chose Julep are because they reveal what the boxes will contain and allow you a chance to either skip, gift, or change your profile that month to get a different box. Yes it is of course heavy on nail polish, but that's what they do best! Presumably you'd also have signed up for this because you like nail polish :)
Ok enough rambling from me about why I like this program versus others, let's get on to my thoughts about the actual products I received!
Starting with the nail polishes of course, the intro box contained two, "Claudette" (brick red), and "Helen" (lavendar pastel).  I swatched the polishes on the swatch stickets that came with the bottles, and they are true to the color seen in the bottle. Both are creamy opaque colors and more warm-toned. These two alone would have cost $35 if I bought them from Sephora!
  I have read many reviewers that dislike Julep due to their tall-thin bottle design, which they feel is easy to tip over.  I actually don't have a problem with this and find the bottle design elegant-looking and a nice change from my other stubby bottles. Others also complain that there is too little product compared to other brands. Again this doens't bother me because I have never actually finished a bottle of nail polish before! I either get sick of the color or it starts to get goopy and streaky, so less product is actually better for me.
  Now onto the other products... the other full-size product in the intro box was the Instant Warming Foot Scrub. It's very thick and contains pumice. I didn't quite feel the "warming" part of this, but it definitely did soften my foot (especially my heel area).  They recommend using it 2-3 times a week, but I like it so much I may use it more often! Ok maybe not...I am a mom afterall and probably won't have the time to do this more often, but I can see this being a nice part of my beauty routines I try to do after the baby has gone to bed to relax.
Julep did also throw in a one-time-use foil sample of their glycolic hand scrub.  It was good, but nothing special so I won't be purchasing the full size. The other thing you may have noticed from the very top photo is the crystal nail file, which I bought as an "add-on" to my box for $2.99, which I thought was a pretty good deal and it's a decent file.
Overall, I'm quite pleased with Julep so far. Pros: full-sized products, ability to choose different boxes or skip months. Cons: can't really think of any for me, but I guess if you really like surprises more than actually getting stuff you like then this isn't for you. 
They also give reward points for purchases and referalls, which are always a plus! So I am going to shamelessly put my referral link here if you are interested in joining!
 Please do let me know if you use it so I can thank you!!!! Try coupon codes "PENNY" or "FREEBOX" to get your first box for pretty much free (you will have to pay shipping though if you use the codes)

Are you subscribed to Julep or any other subscription boxes? Let me know your thoughts!

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