Last year, Sephora introduced a new tier to their Beauty Insider reward program. In addition to “Beauty Insider” and “VIB” (Very Important Beauty), there would now be a title called “VIB Rouge.” Unlike the other two tiers, VIB Rouge includes a welcome gift when you meet the Rouge criteria (basically spending way too much money at Sephora in one year). The first year you qualify for VIB Rouge, you receive a mini Bite lipstick in an exclusive shade, VIB Rouge (a bright red). The second year you qualify, you receive a full-size Formula X nail polish in another exclusive shade, X ♥ Rouge (a classic candle apple red- notice a pattern here?). The gifts are small so it’s definitely not worth trying to make Rouge just to receive them, but if you qualify anyway, why not get a free gift? The exclusive colors are also available on Sephora’s website, but only VIB Rouges have access to them.
I don’t really wear red nail polish, so I wasn’t too excited about this year’s gift. Plus, a Formula X polish? Couldn’t Sephora partner with someone a little more exciting, like Deborah Lippmann? At least it is a full-size polish. X ♥ Rouge is exactly what it is described as: a bright, candy apple red.
I’m not big on red polishes, but I do like X ♥ Rouge. Most reds are too dark or boring for me, but X ♥ Rouge is a great, bright, summery red. It really pops on the nails but doesn’t look too vampy or old-fashioned. It is a very easy red to wear and I was surprised by how much I liked it.
Formula X might not be a designer name, but it is a good quality polish. X ♥ Rouge went on smoothly and evenly, although it was a little sheer. I probably wouldn’t have noticed if I didn’t have a bruise at the top of my pinky nail. Even with two coats it was still visible, but on the rest of my nails the color looked pretty opaque. I really liked the formula of this polish and I will probably pick up more Formula X shades in colors I like better (specifically pink).