Product Review: Essie Sleek Sticks

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Hey guys! So if you haven’t already read the blog on my latest drugstore beauty haul, head over here to read that so you know a little background on how I obtained this product.

Basically, Essie Sleek Sticks are nail stickers similar to the ones made by Sally Hansen, Jamberry, etc. They are marketed as an all-in-one nail solution which provides nails which are instantly dry with little mess and no topcoat necessary. Essie takes this one step further and even embellishes its stickers. Packages include 18 stickers of various sizes, enough for one full manicure (or two if you’re thrifty and willing to cut stickers to size). I prefer to use these products for one full mani and then use the extras to accent solid, polished manicures on my ring fingers. A package retails for about $10 and can be found in most big box stores and pharmacies.

But boy am I glad I didn’t spend $10. Or I would be in line, receipt in hand, at Walgreens/Target right about now. Because I rarely say this but this product stinks. Badly. Of old cheddar left out to dry.

First off, the stickers feel like straight up scotch tape. What didn’t set off any alarms when inside the packaging quickly had me saying eww as I pulled the actual stickers out of the wrapping. They feel thin and chinsy and have an unpleasant residue. The shine seems highly unnatural and the embellishments look like they are from the $0.99 aisle of the children’s craft section (right next to the pom poms and pipe cleaners).

Putting the product on was way too difficult, especially since I was fully focused, used a flat surface, and have put on nail stickers before. The stickers had the embellishment on the top. They were impossible to cut while sticky so I decided to reverse them so I could actually see the design since my nails aren’t 3 inches long like the stickers. The stickers would not smooth out. I continued to smooth the nails, warming them with the heat of my fingers but they only continued to wrinkle up, refusing to lay down and be still. I read online that top coat would only cause the stickers to shrivel up so I did not attempt to add that.

When I was finally done and somewhat satisfied with my handy work, I went to sleep. The next morning I woke up to this…

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And promptly turned into Hades.

Now why was I so upset? If you read my blog you know I only paid a dollar for each package. But it’s the point. It’s the point that these are Essie, a reputable brand that we all know and love. And these are still on the market for full retail. And the consensus across multiple media sources is pretty much unanimously that they stink. The edges are rough, they chip within days, and they lift like there’s no tomorrow. My nails haven’t looked this wonky since the first time I tried a marble manicure.

My message to Essie is a simple one: do better.

-BGB

Dollar Tree Drugstore Beauty Haul

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Hey guys! So I was around town today and happened to stop into my favorite hidden treasure: Dollar Tree. Now I know what you’re thinking but this Dollar Tree is in an affluent neighborhood and is the size of a small supermarket. It tends to have some really high-end brands, albeit in small quantities, so I encourage you to shop frequently.

Today was my day off so I just went to the store out of convenience, not for anything in particular. Shocker: I ended up finding some serious deals in the beauty aisle! I picked out three packages of Essie Sleek Sticks. These are nail wraps or stickers, similar to Jamberry. They are a whole manicure in one. I didn’t know how much they retailed for but being Essie, I knew it was definitely more than a dollar.

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(From L to R: stickers and stones, over the moon, glam it on)

Next big deal were the Maybelline Color Tattoo 24hr shadows. I actually picked these up because I recently saw in a magazine (which one, I can’t remember) that these were a top makeup artist pick for fall or something along those lines. They are apparently really pigmented and blendable and come in a range of colors. I stuck with neutrals but there were gorgeous goldenrods, pinks, and blues as well. Again, these were in small quantities. There were maybe a dozen total shadows in the store.

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(buff & tuff, downtown brown)

I also picked up a Milani Shadow Eyez pencil in brown deluxe. I love shadow pencils in golden brown colors to use on my lower lash line to make my eye shape really pop. The shadow sticks are as easy to use as liners but smudge a lot more easily.

Finally, my last find was a package of tribal Hot Jewels, the As-Seen-On-TV variety of flash tats. Those are the metallic temporary tattoos that kind of look like jewelry and have been popular all summer. I’ve been wanting to try them but hadn’t been able to validate the cost. For $1, I figured they were worth a try. (Plus, tonight is Roglow, a huge paint/glow party you will hear more about soon.)

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Some of you are probably thinking: B, why not just pull out your trusty smartphone and see exactly how much these items retail for as you go? Well you see dear readers, I am a deal-catching fanatic. When I’m done deal hopping, I run directly home so I can look up the retail cost of each item and marvel at the glory of how much I saved (even though I usually didn’t need anything I bought). So for me, the chase is the best part. I love using my own knowledge-base to estimate how much I’ve saved. So here’s the roundup…

Essie Sleek Sticks: $9.99 (Target)

Maybelline Color Tattoo: $6.79 (Walgreens)

Milani Shadow Eyez: $6.49 (Walgreens)

Hot Jewels: $9.99 (Target)

That means I spent $7 for $60 worth of product! That’s a savings of over $50!

So check out your local discount spots; you never know what you’ll find.

-BGB

*everyone runs to Dollar Tree*

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