Jun 11 2015

Girly Bits Cosmetics Launches Julia, for Andrew

Purchased by me.

My Aunt Jeannette isn’t your typical, everyday aunt. She’s much more than that!

My memories of growing up with Aunt Jeannette are about drinking chocolate Coca-Colas, staying up til 11 p.m. at Grandmom’s during sleep overs, and coloring in coloring books together. The three of us would play board games like Parcheesi and card games like Go Fish.

These are some of my fondest childhood memories, with an aunt who was more my BFF growing up than my aunt.

To this day, Jeannette still calls me pumpkin, which sounds a bit more like “pun-kin,” and I call her Jeannette-y. Every now and then, we will still color together.

Like I said, Jeannette isn’t your typical, everyday aunt; she is 10 years older than me but doesn’t age the same way that you and I do. She’s got Down syndrome, and it keeps her forever, wonderfully, young at heart.

jeannette 2

(Jeannette and I, circa the late 90s at Christmas)

You have not experienced love until you experience the love of someone with Down syndrome. It is a pure, innocent love. Jeannette gives hugs and smiles and will say things to you with a sweet little smile like “are you getting married?” when you introduce her to your new boyfriend (true story, lol!). She will hug you and tell you she loves you just because she’s so happy to see you, even after she’s already hugged you twice already.

Jeannette lives her life quietly with my grandmother and she is a light in the life of my small maternal side of the family.


(Top left, my grandmom, then me, my mom and Jeannette – Christmas, late ’90s)

But there are others with Down syndrome who live a little bit more out loud, who pursue outside hobbies and interests and even start their own businesses. People like Andrew Banar.

Andrew was recently named as one of Canada’s 2015 Down Syndrome Heroes for the accomplishments he’s made through his business, Group Hug Apparel.

So why am I sharing all this with you?!

Well, the nail polish community is involved in raising money for “Andrew’s Helping Sick Kids One T-Shirt at a Time Campaign” – are you surprised?! Hell no – there are a lot of good people in our world, including Pam Heil of Girly Bits CosmeticsPam has collaborated with Andrew on a nail polish called “Julia,” with $3.00 from the sale of each bottle going toward Andrew’s campaign.

Girly Bits Cosmetics Julia swatches and review on BeautyJudy

Through his campaign, Andrew sends new teddy bears and his Group Hug Apparel T-shirts (or onesies!) to kids around the world who are sick in the hospital or going through treatment for an illness. Andrew sends his love in a personal letter with each shirt.

Julia, named after Andrew’s girlfriend – he’s apparently always trying to find the perfect pink polish for her,,,what a great boyfriend amiright??!!  – is a bright bubble gum, hot neon pink shimmery polish with light micro glitter, silver flakes and a smidge of holographic sparkle, according to Girly Bits! 

Julia can be purchased/pre-ordered on the Girly Bits website, so we can all support Andrew’s campaign! Julia will start shipping the week of June 22.

And, if you want to buy a Group Hug Apparel T-shirt while you’re ordering your Julia,  you can do that from the Group Hug Apparel websiteIf you plan to order both the polish and something from Group Hug Apparel, use the code “Julia” on that site to get free shipping, AND leave an order note that it is to be combined with the your Girly Bits order. When you place your polish order on Girly Bits, add the polish to your cart, and check off the option that says: * Is this order being combined with a Group Hug Apparel order? * and proceed to check out as usual. Girly Bits will ship your order of polish and items ordered from Group Hug Apparel together. In most cases additional shipping will not be required, but in the off chance that it is (say you order a couple hoodies and a bunch of polish!), Girly Bits will invoice you for shipping.

The polish (and if you buy shirts at the same time!) will ship combined the week of June 22.

So how about some swatches of this polish?! The formula is rich with micro glitter and flakes, so it’s dense. The polish was not hard to apply, and I used three coats for opacity. With top coat, the mani is smooth! Check Julia out:

Girly Bits Cosmetics Julia swatches and review on BeautyJudy
Girly Bits Cosmetics Julia swatches and review on BeautyJudy

Here’s a macro shot – a little blurry but you can see the flakes and the micro glitter!:

Girly Bits Cosmetics Julia swatches and review on BeautyJudy

Finally, check out Pam and Andrew putting together bottles of Julia:

The polish will also be for sale at a pasta dinner/fundraiser event being held on Friday, June 19, in honor of Andrew, in Kingsville, Ontario at Colasanti’s Tropical Gardens. Tickets and more info can be purchased/found here. The proceeds of the event will go toward Andrew’s campaign, and a new Cardinal Carter bursary honoring Andrew.

More about Andrew

Andrew Banar was born with Down Syndrome and has been challenged with many of the associated health issues. Andrew has always been happy and has lived life to its fullest. He is fearless and pursues interests and hobbies with excitement and dedication and he’s a great source of inspiration and love for his large circle of extended family & friends.

Andrew keeps busy and active within the community. He graduated from St. Clair College – Life Skills Program – in June 2014, works part time at Colasanti’s Tropical Gardens in Ruthven, has volunteered at the Leamington Hospital, volunteered at Walmart, and has worked at the Kingsville Golf Course. Andrew takes drum lessons and is also a serious fan of music and movies.

Andrew has also been recognized for his leadership, entrepreneurial success, and his positive role model through many awards. This is his second time receiving the Canadian Down Syndrome Heroes honor.

Andrew, with the help of his mom Karen, also runs Group Hug Apparel. They sell the popular tees, hoodies, and other cool items at a slew of events, festivals, and charity fundraisers (and now worldwide through the GHA web store) with a portion of the proceeds donated to many important charities and community organizations.

  • http://www.honeygirlsworld.com/ Honeygirlk

    I absolutely love this post Judy. My son volunteers a lot of his time outside of school and sports to spend time with kids who are autistic or have down syndrome and together as a family we have learned so much about the cause and how inspiring these people are to us. This is such a wonderful campaign. Thank you for sharing it with me.

    • BeautyJudy

      Thanks Honey! What an awesome volunteer activity for your son – and what an amazing mom to encourage such diversity and acceptance in your children. <3

  • Lisa Marie Heath

    What a beautiful polish and an amazing cause!

    • BeautyJudy

      I love seeing the nail community do things like this for a good cause!

  • http://beautylitfromwithin.blogspot.com Nidia Doherty

    What a bright, beautiful polish, inspired by some bright, beautiful people. <3

    • BeautyJudy

      Agreed – what Pam did warms my heart!

  • http://www.confessionsofasarcasticmom.com/ Destany

    What an amazing cause!!

    • BeautyJudy


  • http://www.mynewestaddiction.com/ Laura

    Great cause and I love the shade

    • BeautyJudy

      It’s a fun pink!

  • http://www.slashedbeauty.com/ Miranda | Slashed Beauty

    This is such an amazing campaign. I love when beauty meets doing good in the world <3

    • BeautyJudy

      I agree – it really makes me happy to see campaigns like this – especially from the indie polish world, it’s so tight-knit and impactful!

  • http://www.beyondbeautylounge.com/ Beyond Beauty Lounge

    What a great post! Thank you for sharing your story and what a great cause for Girly Bits to support. I volunteer at an organization that provides a day camp for adults with special needs, many of who have Downs Syndrome and I always enjoy the students.

    • BeautyJudy

      Thanks Mercedes! I can imagine how rewarding your volunteer time is – I really, really want to get involved in the Special Olympics organization, I want to be a cheerleader for the athletes and do more than just donate!

  • http://www.notesfrommydressingtable.com/ Erika

    I love Girly Bits for doing this and you for writing this. <3

    • BeautyJudy

      Amen, me too! And thank you, Erika 🙂

  • marciaf

    What beautiful stories about both Andrew and your aunt. And what a wonderful cause. Girly Bits is to be commended for helping so many people with this endeavor.

    • BeautyJudy

      Thanks so much, Marcia! I agree, I love that Pam, and many others in the indie polish community, do so much for organizations and individuals when they can.

  • Kimberly Purcell

    You ARE a special girl, and I want you to know that. Thanks for sharing your sweet story. I tell people about drinking chocolate Cokes and I’ll get looks like I have 3 heads. LOL My mother has Alzheimers and she drinks chocolate Diet Pepsi like it’s going out of style.

    • BeautyJudy

      Aw, Kimberly that is so sweet. YES CHOCOLATE COKES!!! lol, that and a small dish of ice cream on sleep over nights. It was our thing, me, Jeannette and Grandmom! Every now and then I indulge in one!!!

  • FabZilla_Kath

    This is such a heartwarming post. Thanks for sharing your story.

    • BeautyJudy

      Thanks Kath, thanks for checking it out!

  • http://www.phyrra.net/ Phyrra

    That’s such a pretty polish! Thanks for sharing this story.

    • BeautyJudy

      Thanks for checking it out!

  • http://www.blushingnoir.com/ Brooke @ Blushing Noir

    Your story is lovely and the polish and cause are wonderful! Thank you for sharing!

    • BeautyJudy

      Thanks Brooke!!

  • http://www.katstayspolished.com/ Kat D

    LOVE this Judy! Your famly is full of beautiful women and little miss Lo is so lucky to have you as her mom!

    • BeautyJudy

      Thank you Kat – that is so sweet of you!!!!!

  • http://www.crazybeautifulmakeup.com/ Heather

    Such a great cause to support, and this polish is beautiful I hope it sells out!

    • BeautyJudy

      Agreed, Heather! I hope Pam is able to raise lots for Andrew’s campaign!

  • Allison @neversaydiebeauty

    I love learning about your aunt Jeanette and seeing your family pix. What a great cause and wonderful that Girly Bits is helping support Andrew’s and a lot of other people’s cause. Beautiful shade too.

    • BeautyJudy

      Thanks Allison! I’m still wearing the polish, third day of wear. I don’t want to take it off, it’s a great summer color especially in the sun!

  • http://www.girlybitscosmetics.com Pam Heil

    Thank you for sharing your personal experiences with us Judy! You are absolutely right. The unconditional outpouring of love that we receive from someone with Down Syndrome is magical. It’s something we could all learn from. I am so very honoured to have had the opportunity to collaborate with Andrew, and to support his pay it forward fundraising efforts. He is an amazing young man with an equally amazing mom, and we are grateful for all of his contributions to our community.

    • BeautyJudy

      He sounds awesome. I wish I could meet him! I will be looking at the site later to order a onesie for Lorelei!!!

      • http://www.girlybitscosmetics.com Pam Heil

        Oh my gosh that is perfect, thank you!

  • http://glamorable.com/ Anastasia

    A beautiful nail polish for a beautiful cause. Thank you for sharing your story!

    • BeautyJudy

      Thanks for reading, Anastasia! I know today was a long one 🙂