Monday, April 11, 2016

National Sibling Day: YSL Jade Impérial

Technically, National Sibling Day was yesterday, but I am late to everything because of who I am as a person. In all the time I've had this blog (or any personal social media, for that matter), I've never posted a NSD shout-out despite, oh, you know, having and being a sibling. Only recently did I start finding this weird -- if I can post on sundry pop culture "holidays," then why couldn't I shout-out my sister on Sibling Day? Officially out of excuses. (It is downright frightening how much this meme is applicable to my existence.)

KK and I like to joke that between the two of us, we make up one fully functional person. I don't know how not to make myself sound like a complete sloth -- and this goes double when I brag about her -- but the girl is far more intelligent, driven, and self-sufficient than I am, all qualities that have had a heavy hand in shaping our dynamic from our late teens and even now (and probably always will). In fact, total strangers tend to guess she's the oldest because that's how she presents herself, although I'm two years older. Anyway, those strengths helped her find a job that led to working in NYC for a little bit, which I was thrilled about because that meant I had (1) somewhere to stay if I wanted to visit and -- best of all -- (2) an instant NYC product mule.

Anyone remember YSL Jade Impérial, from Spring 2013? I saw swatches online, saw it in person at Nordstrom, couldn't justify it, passed on it, and went on my merry way. Fast forward to 2014 when I decided I did want it and none of the usual stores close to me had it in stock. While KK was planning her visit home for our dad's retirement party that October, she asked me if there was anything I wanted her to pick up in NYC, and ... well.

Three coats with SV. These pictures were a labor of love because (1) SO COLD, wtf Mother Nature! and (2) oh hey, sunset!, so they're kind of all over the place. Y'all can deal.

I know some people don't care for the packaging/bottling of YSL polish, but I rather like it. When the quality (and wear) of the polish is this good, who gives a crap how it's packaged and bottled? Not me!

Jade Impérial wasn't what I thought it would be, and I mean this in the best way -- this particular variety of jade is a little different than the ones I'm familiar with, and too warm-toned and faded to be a true imperial jade. It's closer to the deeper veins in green marble, in certain lights; it's more of a dusty, muted khaki or sage green that stops just short of being olive. Because it's somewhat muted, it does lend itself to a bit of a lobster hands situation, but I don't care. It's beautiful. I think it reads fairly neutral on me, which is quite rare for any faded color.

Also, this formula is AWESOME. It's smooth, creamy, and opaque in two coats (I only used three for photos). The brush is wide and flat, but it was easy to work with and I barely needed any cleanup. Dry time was very, very fast with SV, and I wore this for one week -- it looked scuffed as hell, but the good news is that I had minimal tip wear. I didn't have any chips across the tops, mostly on the sides of my nails where the top coat started to crack after growing out for a week. Dude, for what this cost ($27? $28? I feel like nail polish prices were a dollar less in 2014), I am hella delighted with this polish.

Quick Note 1: I haven't seen or tried Chanel polish since Chanel converted to its new "gel" formula and bottle, but Chanel could learn a thing or two from YSL's wider bottle necks. It was SO nice to dip the brush in the bottle without worrying about the polish bubbling or generally just being weird!

Quick Note 2: My only complaint with this bottle has to do with the cap, which does not screw tightly and might be the culprit behind the evaporation I had -- not too bad, as I had a good 90% of polish left. Alternately, if I were to play devil's advocate, this bottle could have been opened and used before my sister even bought it, and what I think evaporated just might have been a usage line. Hard to tell. I don't remember this being an issue when I first opened this polish, but just in case it is evaporation, I used a grippy silicone oven mitt to close this sucker super tight. Must preserve the precious!

Jade Impérial was a limited edition polish, released in the spring of 2013 for YSL's Arty Stone collection. Real talk: Until the recent YSL Peace Green frenzy, I don't recall any other LE YSL polish selling out as fast as Jade Impérial did, not even Bleu Celadon. Jade Impérial was a bitch to track down and I was beyond lucky to score it at the end of September 2014 -- I'm 80% sure I did a Google Shopping search that directed me to Barneys, where my sister was able to purchase a bottle at the counter. Seriously, what kind of good luck?

Not really sure how to end this post. Of course, I must give major, major snaps to KK for trekking to Barneys and THEN squeezing Jade Impérial (and three other polishes) into her carry-on in a TSA-approved Ziploc toiletry bag! For some reason I posted this to IG back in the day, wtf? Until last summer, I hadn't flown in a while so this was pretty entertaining.

Mad packing skills. What is traveling light? I pack EVERYTHING I think I might need.
Oh, and the polish on my thumb is Essie Style Hunter, a.k.a. the best red you never knew you had to have. Buy it already.

Both my sister and I are highly experienced in the fine art of evading photographers (the camera adds 50 pounds), so I don't think there are any semi-recent pictures of just the two of us that aren't on my dad's camera. I'll have to come back to this post and add a baby picture because that was the last time we were cute. Anyhizzle, KK, if you're reading this: Thank you again for being the best mule (and feel free to keep using my Ulta & Sephora accounts to rack up my points 😜)! I'm still excited about these polishes. Gotta post those Cirques ... !

Also exciting = the show we're going to on Sunday. I think one of the best things about getting older is that we've become each other's built-in concert buddy, and we've gone to at least one show together every year. Actually, one of my favorite memories is from two summers ago when we met up in D.C. to hit up the 9:30 Club twice in one weekend, once on Friday night (Camera Obscura, so beautiful) and again on Sunday evening (Bebel Gilberto, so entrancing). Saturday was hot as balls, so after brunching in the city with one of my college roommates, we went back to our hotel room to nap, kick back, get a takeout dinner across the street, watch TV, and talk until our throats were sore. She had come down from New York and I had driven up from Virginia. It was really, really nice to hang out, just the two of us, in a different environment and to be able to move around (or not!) at our own pace. Maybe it was that element of being elsewhere or the state of our relationship at that specific point in time or being together because we wanted to, and not out of convenience or because of our parents insisting one of us accompany the other. Maybe it was some other inexplicable factor altogether. But that weekend was one of my favorite weekends and remains, overall, a deeply pleasant memory. I hope we can make more. 

Thanks for checking out my Sibling Day post! IDK if anyone will comment because my readership has dropped off (meh, hiatus + word vomit effect), but I have to ask: Anybody else cave in to a late lemming? Who else has this YSL? Thoughts? Any thoughts on YSL polishes in general? Has your sibling ever muled or hunted anything down for you? And if you feel so inclined, you should share a favorite memory you have with your sibling, or something you guys like to do together.

I think part of what's got me extra reflective about this day is the fact that my aunt is still camping out with me. She is my mom's older sister, and they also have a two-year difference, but they are like oil and water (I think my parents' accountant says they're like "heaven and earth," lol what does that even mean). Next to them, KK and I might have more in common than we'll admit!

Again, I don't know when my next post will go up. Speaking of sisters, I have one too many Sinful Kylie polishes that I want to blog, but this week is tricky. I'll see what I can do. These Sinfuls are too damn pretty to keep to myself. >___<


  1. Yes! I would love to see more sinfuls.. Can't beat the price point. :) I really like the jade. But I can't see myself shelling out that many $$ for it.

    1. Hi Danielle, I'm with you re: Sinful! The new Kylie mattes have some awesome shimmers, hope you've gotten a chance to pick some up!

      And yeah, this YSL was pricey, but I don't wear makeup other than lipstick so this wasn't too terrible on my wallet. :)

  2. This was a really sweet tribute to your sis.:)

    Jade looks amaaaaazig on you. Love! Although I love YSL polishes in general. The formulas are generally flawless and while I normally hate wide, paddle-style brushes (my nail beds are small), the YSL brush works for me somehow. I bought Peace Green and Love Pink from their spring collection. I've only worn Love Pink so far but I loved it. It was super pearly and reminded me of seashells, so it had kind of a retro quality to it (read: frosty grandma shade) but felt fresh at the same time.

    1. Thanks! I found out she WAS reading it, lmao. What a lurker.

      Just a theory, but I think you might like that brush because it's just right in terms of firmness & control. Some paddle brushes are TOO stiff and I feel like this one is pretty perfect, you know? Esp. when the formula is so good.

      I missed Peace Green because I was short on $$ when it came out and I REGRET EVERYTHING but I'll live. FWIW, Love Pink seemed really cool, like it had an almost opal look to it.


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