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Julep Nail Vernis Harley

Julep Nail Vernis Harley Nail Polish Bottle

How cool would it be to have shiny, reflective mercury on your nails? Those were my thoughts when I read Julep’s description of Harley as “liquid silver.” I wanted my nails to look like pools of the poisonous, deadly element. (Ooh..)

It didn’t turn out to be as reflective as I wanted it to be (is it even possible to have a mirror finish in a nail polish?) but the chrome finish was a fun detour from my preferred crèmes and definitely a unique addition to my collection.

Julep Nail Vernis Harley Swatch
Julep Harley Nail Vernis swatch in indirect sunlight

Harley is an icy, silver metallic chrome. It’s not the Cloud Gate (a.k.a. “the Bean” sculpture at the Millenium Park in Chicago) sort of see-your-reflection chrome no matter how much I wished it were, but instead, it’s a brushed-metal silver with a satin finish.

It easily picks up colors in its surroundings. You can see my dark shirt I was wearing reflected below.

Julep Nail Vernis Harley Swatch Outdoor
Julep Harley Nail Vernis swatch outdoors

What I love about Harley — and this is true of most Julep polishes — is that it’s completely opaque in 1 coat. I learned not to be too conscious about streaks, though, as it is infinitely less streaky dry than when it’s still wet. I had doubts that it would look like “liquid silver,” yet it became quite close once fully dry.

Still being a metallic newbie, I couldn’t get as neat of a contour around the cuticles as I wanted to without creating strange lines, even on my second coat/try. I realize I could always do “clean up” to make the polish curve perfectly around the cuticles, but I never do. :P Is there a trick to making metallics look seamless?

Julep Nail Vernis Harley Swatch Direct Light
Julep Harley Nail Vernis swatch under direct light

You know how some metallics look extra frosty with shimmer under direct light? I’m not fond of those finishes, so I was glad to find Harley is not one of them. Frosty nail polishes only make me think of poorly formulated, toxic polishes from decades ago. (No worries if you like them — we all have our likes and dislikes! :))

I quite like how sci-fi Harley looks! I don’t own a finish like it. I do wish it was possible to get a truly reflective, shiny metallic finish with nail polish, but I’m guessing those are only possible with stick-on nails like Minx. Is that right?

What do you think of Harley? Do you own other brushed-metal finishes like it?

Also, if you have tips for neatly applying metallics, please share! :)

Availability: $14 on Julep.com. I received my bottle as part of the Julep Maven Membership Program. Read my Julep Maven review hereRight now, US & Canadian residents can take the quiz and join here for 1-cent (regularly $19.99) by entering code COLOR2012 at checkout. (Disclosure: these are referral links that provide me with a Julep credit. Thank you for your support!)

11 Responses to Julep Nail Vernis Harley

  1. I’ve never tried Julep nail polish, but it looks great! I’m imagining all the interesting designs I could try with this. P.S. You’re really great at doing your nails – even without perfect ‘cuticle curves’!

  2. Metallics like this definitely are harder to apply. However I picked up the Essie Mirror Metallics collection (yes, the whole thing–there were sales and coupons involved!!!!!) and I didn’t have *too* many problems with those. I think I like the finish on those a little better than on Harley here, which does lean a little frosty for my taste. I got the Boho Glam August box and I wore the white metallic a couple of weeks ago–I really liked it for what it is, but it took about 4-5 coats to get opaque and relatively unstreaky. Which is okay, for a once in a blue moon thing, but by the time I was done with my manicure I’d used up about 20% of my bottle!!! You’re right though, there really isn’t any such thing as a mirror finish polish, in my opinion, just chromes like the Essies or full-on Minx.

    • Very nice!! Harley does actually look close to Essie No Place Like Chrome, but Essie seems less streaky to me. Could just be my application, though! I love that they have a gold version. Did you get a September Julep box, by the way?

      • No, I chose to skip. I thought the Trink Turk collaboration was cute, but rather un-unique–I couldn’t find a box with colors that I didn’t already have in spades. Perhaps October will be better!

        • I kind of guessed! I thought most of the colors overlapped with previous boxes, too. I’m looking forward to October because I don’t own any suedes (so unadventurous!) :P

  3. I have the Julep Leighton, which seems to be a darker metallic silver than Harley. This color is surprising easy to wear, i.e. I don’t need to worry about it clashing with my outfit. So I’ve worn it quite a few times. The streaks are unavoidable, but I actually accept it as part of its cool characteristic. The curves are difficult, but as long as you apply nearly identical layers on top of each other, it should even out. I found if I don’t layer evenly, the thinner part would wear out or peel quicker.

    • Thanks for the tip! You’re right, Leighton does seem to be a darker version of Harley. I wish there were types of metallics that are absolutely streak-free, like a car paint job. I suppose one would need to spray paint for that, but Harley is one of the less streaky metallics I’ve seen. :)

  4. I have always loved your nail posts! The pictures are so pretty! <3 And this Harley polish is just amazing, I wish Julep ship to Malaysia. But they don't. :(

    Any idea what other polishes are almost similar to this one?

    • Thank you, Carmen! :) I wish Julep would ship worldwide, too. In the above comment, Julia said Essie No Place Like Chrome from their Mirror Metallics collection is similar to Harley. I hope you can find it!

What say you?