The Day in Beauty Vol. 22: A Sofa Search and a Meeting With Prince Char-Mint

Published in: Just For Fun, Nails, Sally Hansen


Good morning, gorgeous! Happy Saturday to ya. I hope you woke up with a big smile on your face.


I’m smiling at the moment because I’m looking at freshly painted nails.


I just did my paws with Sally Hansen’s Miracle gel in Prince Char-mint because, obviously, I needed another mint polish in my life. LOL! I’m all about those mint shades.

Prince Char-mint is from the seven-piece Sally Hansen Miracle Gel Summer 2016 collection. There are some pinks in the collection, a peach, a couple of reds, and this bright and cheerful creamy mint, which I’m all about.


I talk about the Sally Hansen Miracle Gels all the time (sorry) because you know I love them. They’re a fantastically good deal for $10 each, so if you’re ever, like, just kickin’ it at the drugstore, looking at candy, emergency ice cream or greeting cards, and you decide that you want to treat yourself to something in the beauty aisle, but you don’t want to spend all of your lunch money on a single nail polish, they’re great. They dry quick, too (about 10 minutes), and last about a week before chips (which is good for me).


Honestly, I don’t know if I could go back to regular nail polish now because of how quickly these gels dry. I don’t have the patience anymore to sit for 40 minutes while I wait for multiple coats of my nail polish to dry. I just can’t… I can’t anymore.

Oh, one thing about the Sally Hansen Miracle Gels, though — you can’t just stick any old topcoat on top of them. They’re formulated to work best with Sally Hansen’s own Miracle Gel Top Coat.

So fuh?

Question for you. There’s something I’ve been meaning to ask you… What’s your stance on Ikea sofas?

I’ve been saving up for a new sofa, and the prices on Ikea’s couches are looking really good to me. I mean…I do believe that you get what you pay for with some things, but I have a feeling that Connor Claire is going to be an active kid, and the kind of kid who turns couches into her own personal jungle gym, so I don’t want to spend a ton of money on something that she (and Tabs) will just end up destroying.

I looked around and got a few recommendations for the Ikea Karlstad and Kivik.



Anywho, if you have any sofa advice, I’m all ears. Home decor isn’t my forte, but I’m trying, man, I’m trying!

OK, I’m off for a run. Gotta get back into the groove of exercising again. It’s time to put those feet to the pavement.

Have a spectacular rest of your Saturday, my friend. I’ll talk to you soon. 🙂

Your friendly neighborhood beauty addict,



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So far, 36 people have commented on this article. How cool is that?

  1. Virginia says:

    I probably wouldn’t buy an Ikea couch but that’s just me. You could probably spend the same amount and get a quality sofa that would last longer even with some wear and tear. We bought ours 10 years ago at Couch Potato in Soquel for a really good deal and it still looks decent.

  2. Jaclyn levy says:

    My husband and I bought 2 IKEA couches 8 years ago and they still look brand spanking new, even with our 2 young boys now in the house! They’re a leather-type material that’s really withstood the test of time and minimal care on our part. We love them.

  3. Allison J Brouwer says:

    Love the polishes! I never make time to do my nails! Need to change that ASAP!
    I moved out a few years ago and got a small couch from West Elm. Its their Henry in there performance velvet. Certainly not as inexpensive as Ikea, but not the most expensive either. The performance velvet is fantastic, cleans off really well (i.e. I’ve had good luck getting the cat vomit off it), and the cushions are really keeping their fluff! The material inside is recycled material and the couch is assembled in the USA, so lots of pros. LOL, obviously I still love the damn thing!

  4. Charisma says:

    I actually have an Ikea sofa something similar to the kivik sofa in that same color. I liked how inexpensive it was and that you could pull the bottom out and it was a bed. My daughter has beaten it up but it’s not very comfy. Stains pretty easily but also easy to spot clean. She’s 3 years old now. So this couch is about 1.5-2 years old. We are planning to move this year and will definitely be getting rid of this and getting a more comfy sofa. Good luck on your search!

  5. Amy says:

    Hmm my experience w IKEA sofas is that they look cute for a year or two or three, then something will break or sag. So if you want something cheap that you’ll replace when Connor is older, could be smart and look fine for awhile. If you can spend more now, I’d get sunbrella fabric on a sofa with a durable frame like Younger or Ethan Allen. They have sales you could wait for (EA has 20-25% off a few times a year) or possibly an outlet. Sunbrella is super durable for kids and pets. We have a sofa with it that’s held up great with kids and a dog.

  6. Lisa says:

    My friend has one that looks like the Kivik. It’s about 5 years old and still looks new. The issue for me is that it is so firm that it is incredibly uncomfortable. That’s MY personal opinion though. Sit on them for a while before you purchase.

  7. Raph says:

    Hi Karen, I would recommend the Karlstrad. I love it! Affordable, nice look, pretty comfortable and, last but not least,the cover is washable.
    Here in France, we LOVE ikea furniture 😉

  8. Ema says:

    Hi Karen! I had a really cheap Ikea sofa for almost 2 years. It was so broken down that I preferred to sit on the floor… Enough said! Look into Wayfair, I can’t recommend this website enough! I bought a big sofa in that exact gray color, i believe is more than 80” and it was so cheap I couldn’t resist. After a couple of weeks, I noticed one of the pillows was getting flat. I called them and complaint about it and what they did? They sent me a new sofa! Not a new pillow, a new sofa! And the best part… I didn’t have to return the other one! Now my living room has two big and comfy sofas with matching statement pillows (included) for the price of one! And both are holding up really well. Love them! Hope this helps!!

  9. Lulle says:

    I have an Ikea couch that’s about 4 years old now, and I don’t think it’s aging very well. The cushions are getting flatter or losing their shapes s
    lightly. Still looking ok but I wouldn’t say it’s very high quality. The good thing though is that since Ikea tends to keep the same models for a long time, you can usually replace bits and pieces of it: like the cover, the cushion cases, or the cushion themselves, if they took a beating. So it can be a smart idea with a young kid and a cat! My couch is dark brown, which I thought would be easier to maintain, but I can’t get cat vomit stains off it…
    Lulle recently posted … #FrenchFriday : Yves Rocher Monoi de Tahiti Bath & Body Collection

  10. We have a Kivik sofa bed and a Karlstad sectional which is our main seating. The Kivik looks very nice but the low arms make it really uncomfortable to me so it’s in our less used room. We’ve had Karlstad sectional for 6 years without any sagging or breaking. It’s held up better than any other couch I’ve owned. Having children and cats I also appreciate that the covers are washable and we can replace them if I get tired of the color or they get too ragged. Looking now though, I’m not seeing the selection they used to have.
    Nicole – paleandfreckled recently posted … Target Beauty Haul + Mini Reviews – July 2016

  11. Lily says:

    I’ve never owned an IKEA sofa, but I do know that with furniture you get what you pay for. I have had great success with my grey sectional sofa that is upholstered in microfiber. Spills clean up easily with plain water. It wasn’t cheap, but I’ve had it for 10 years and it still looks great, even with 2 kitties! If you buy a quality sofa, you can even justify recovering it later. Good luck!

  12. Veronica says:

    Hi! I have the Kivik and I can’t recommend it enough. We love it and our kids and all their friends love it. Super easy to clean too. It’s great for movie nights

  13. Gemma says:

    If there’s an upscale consignment store in your area, you may find a very good or great quality sofa at a good price. Good merchandise at upscale consignment comes and goes quickly though. Good luck!

  14. Nati says:

    Hi Karen! I own Ikea Sofa and it’s the best purchase I’ve made. In fact I own two (we have a large living room) But I wouldn’t bother taking a fabric sofa, those are just too delicate and get easily stained (I have a 4 year-old and a one year-old) instead I got the simil-leather. It looks chic and everything can be wiped off of it!
    About the nail polish, what can I say? I’m a nail blogger, I’ve tried Sally Hansen Miracle gel polishes and WHAT a freaking pain, they never ever dry! What is this product? I’ve tried 11 colours, 5 from the permanent range and 6 from different LE collections and, honestly, I totally NOT recommend them. You must have got the only colour that actually works.
    Nati recently posted … Review │OPI Washington DC Collection for Fall-Winter 2016 [Swatches & Review]

  15. Tatiana says:

    My daughter has the Karlstad sofa and matching ottoman. She also has Nibbler kitty who loves to use anything as a scratching post. I remember putting the sofa together was a slight bit of a tussle but not too bad. We put the ottoman together and took it apart and put it back together and still couldn’t get it to sit level. My husband finally returned it and got another one which we did manage to get level on the first try. We bought the sofa in August 2012 when she moved into her apartment in Houston. Since then it’s been moved into storage, then into an apartment in SJ, then into storage again and now into her new apartment in San Bruno. The cushions look a little squished from this last move, but I haven’t seen them since the movers brought the sofa in this last time, so maybe she was able to plump up the back cushions again. Overall, I would say it’s help up OK. The fabric is tightly woven too, so that even though we catch Nibbler reaching up to claw sometimes, it doesn’t have that shredded pulled look a looser weave fabric would have.
    My daughter was really active when she was a toddler. We had a used sofa and she would climb up the back of that and then try to climb the built in bookshelves behind it. She would pull the cushions on the floor and jump from the arm of the sofa onto the cushions and then jump around on them. I didn’t bother with a fancy sofa until my daughter was 9 yrs. old or so. We then bought a sofa from Room & Board. And that sofa despite not having a kid bouncing around on it, doesn’t look much better than the less expensive Ikea sofa. They say to plump the cushions. But they’re huge and thick and heavy, so I beat on them, but they still look very squashed. Not sure I’d replace it with another Room & Board sofa considering the cost. And the toss pillows that came with it are constantly losing down and are rather thin and limp now. So I’m not sure where to get a high quality sofa that will last, because it certainly wasn’t R&B. The Karlstad sofa is now $399 at Ikea. The Metro from Room & Board is now $1,500. You could get 4 Karlstads for the price of one Metro and replace it every few years if it gets worn. We also had some side chairs from Ikea that we got when we lived in Holland. They got moved back by container (ship and then truck) and we had them for 8 heavy use years before we decided it was time to say good bye to them.
    Oh, if you don’t want to put the Ikea sofa together by yourself there are people who specialize in putting Ikea furniture together. We found a business card on the bulletin board near the service/help desk at Ikea in Houston. There are also listings on Task Rabbit and other on-line service sights.
    Sorry for rambling on so long.

  16. Rebecca says:

    I have owned a lot of Ikea furniture from my days as a poor student, then a poor young married couple. Their wooden furniture holds up quite well, but I can’t say the same for their upholstered furniture. It just is not well made – uncomfortable, shoddy construction, fades and stains easily, falls apart quickly. I still have most of the dressers, coffee tables, dining furniture etc, from those days 10+ years ago – it just won’t die! – but I’ve gotten rid of all the couches and chairs.
    You’re better off with something slightly more expensive from a reputable furniture dealer – though I don’t recommend Ethan Allen, you’re just paying a brand markup. I don’t know if they have Ashley or Rooms to Go in CA, but those are two good mid-range furniture stores. You might also try Lovesac – their stuff is good quality and amazingly comfortable.

  17. pamela says:

    Hi Karen! I’ve been enjoying your blog for years, especially Tabs and now Connor Claire (she is a cutie pie!). I have a leather Karlstad and Ottoman. I got them used on Craigslist about 2 years ago and they still look like new! I like the Karlstad better than the Kivik, because I like being able to see everything that rolls underneath. If you get a Karlstad, I recommend round replacement legs, because of baby (and adult!) toes. There’s a cottage industry of people who make replacement legs in all woods, finishes and shapes. I love IKEA… I used to think I always had to buy “the best”, but now I appreciate affordable much more, and everything I’ve bought from Ikea has held up remarkably well. Either way, enjoy!

  18. Jenny says:

    Karen love, I have 3 boys, you need a La Z Boy couch in your life! I’m in love with mine, leather and electronic recline 🙂

  19. Laura says:

    I’ve had the cheap Ikea loveset/mini couch for 13 years (OMG! I’m old! I bought it before grad school…) in cream and just kept various covers on it. Although it’s now the perfect piece for my home office, it’s easily got another 20 years in it at its current wear rate. I’ll be honest- I don’t know if I’d recommend it for family living. It’s not easily cleaned, and there are comfier, more kid-friendly alternatives. Maybe when she’s a teen….

    I’m with you on the Sally Hansen gels- I’ve been on the hunt to find a great white polish that would actually set hard (lately I’ve had problems with lighter polishes that I’ll paint 2-4 hours before bed, everything seems find, wake up with mess). I think I’ve finally found the perfect option- Get Mod.

  20. Ditte K. says:

    How’s Tabs with clawing furniture? Because Kivik would be dead and in long ripped pieces in this house within weeks, because of the clothing like feel, whereas the Karlstad wouldn’t be touched at all, because of the suede like feel 🙂

  21. Chris25 says:

    Since you like them, I’ll give the gel nails a try. I heard some people say they didn’t work any better than regular polish, but I’m curious enough to give it a go.
    Chris25 recently posted … L’Oreal HIP Kohl Eyeliner in Teal

  22. Chelsea says:

    We bought a Kivik with our wedding money and love it – we’ve had it about 2 and a half years and it seems pretty durable. Zack also falls asleep on it at least twice a week, so it’s pretty comfortable. Only issue is that Jiji likes to scratch his nails on it.

    How is the brush on the Sally Hansen Miracle Gels? I was looking at them when I was at CVS buying Essie Gel Couture polishes.

  23. Erin says:

    Ikea replaces stuff that gets damaged at the frame level, so it’s a solid choice either way. Just save your paperwork. My mom had her’s replaced at 8 out of 10 years.
    Erin recently posted … Rodney Strong 2014 Charlotte’s Home Sauvignon Blanc

  24. Mary Ann says:

    Do you have a Costco membership? They have furniture out right now and it’s Costco so the price is good. We bought a sectional couch in February from them and it’s incredibly well made and thoughtfully made. The seat cushions, get this, have a zippered interior cover with the top having a waterproof material so spills won’t get to the foam. Genius! Especially since my cat just peed on it 🙁

  25. Claudia says:

    I bought a Hovas which is no longer in available sadly. Had it for 4 years now and it looks like a pottery barn sofa but was cheaper. Has slip covers which were available in different colors. I think it’s great because they are machine washable and that is so necessary with a toddler when she becomes one. Mine puts up with 2 cats who nap on it, a German shepherd(shedder) who on occasion has been know to vomit on it, a husband who weighs like 240 and a 21 month old (who thinks it is a great place to spit since he recently discovered he could do that from learning to brush his teeth and he also claims all over it and knocks off the cushions) and my pregnant self. Also the cushions have held up great and there is no sagging. If it were still available I would buy another. Did I mention the machine washable covers…. I love that feature the most I think. All in all I am very happy with my purchase, even my formerly extremely skeptical husband loves the couch especially since it is long enough for him to take a nap on it.

  26. Rachel says:

    IKEA couches are great, some even have warranties. Be prepared for Tabs to scratch on it though. But like you said, they’re not super expensive so it can be replaced.

  27. Petra says:

    I absolutely adore my Kivik! It is the best. I have with machine washable fabric and its just top notch! Can’t recomend it more for families with pets and/or small children 🙂

    It is both practical snd super comfy

  28. Kim says:

    My quick advice on the sofa is that “cleanable” fabric is huge. We have some furniture that was quite expensive and some that was quite cheap. With the cheap stuff, we don’t worry about spills, stains, etc. And it cleans easily since it’s pleather. It’s far less stressful. 🙂 Also, I would recommend a style like the Kivik for the L shape. It’ll make it easier for you, Connor and Tabs to snuggle comfortably.

    • Karen says:

      That’s great advice. I’ve actually been wanting an L shaped sectional for years! I hope we can find a comfy one that’s affordable. It’s so hard to buy furniture… I feel like since it’s such a big purchase I’m stuck with the style for at least 10 years, and so I don’t want to mess up, you know? So much pressure, LOL!

  29. Pamela Haddad says:

    We started with an Ektorp, because the covers are washable. But it was difficult to get it to look nice when you try to put it back on after washing. It was ok, but didn’t last too long. We have had a Tidafors sectional and a Kivik chaise that I love, for about 4 years. No kids, but we and the cats love sitting on them and they are comfortable. Also Big Lots has Ashley and Simmons furniture at pretty good discount prices. We have bought 2 chairs that we really like, though the leather-ette one I bought my dad has started pealed. (not sure if it was their dog or grandkids that started it.) So that’s always an option, too. Have fun shopping!

  30. Emily says:

    I’ve been anti-IKEA couches for a while but when we moved into our new house and needed something to fit the space in the budget, I gave in.

    Holy cow, I’m impressed.

    We have the KARLSTAD sectional (the 2×3, not the chaise) in the lighter grey material. Not only has it (so far) withstood lots of parties, puppy “accidents” and cat scratches but it also has held up to us sitting in the same spots on the couch. In Eric’s old apartment, after just 6 months his Ashley Furniture couch was sagging and uncomfortable. Our IKEA couch is 2.5 years old and still going strong with no sagging insight.

    When we first assembled it, the cushions were very firm and uncomfortable but after 2-3 weeks, they loosened up and are now just as comfortable as a Pottery Barn sofa we have in a different room.

    Another plus? Our covers are machine washable. Every so often the puppy will jump up with muddy paws or someone will spill a beverage. No problemo. Unzip and throw in the wash. I’ve washed our entire couch at least 3 times in the past two years and it looks just as new. I think the “weave” on the material of the couch we got also helps hiding some of the wear from the dog (it’s Isunda Grey). The cat marked up one corner of the couch so before the holidays we’ll just purchase another slipcover (I want to say around $100) and that will be that.

    Lastly, the legs are a little boxy so I purchased these separate and stained them the same colour as our other mid-century furniture. They definitely made a big difference!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks, Emily. I’d read about the cushions being very stiff so that’s good to know they loosen up after a bit. I really hope the Karlstad is still around, because there’s not much selection on the IKEA website. *fingers crossed*

      • Emily says:

        They DEFINITELY loosen so stick in there!

        I’ve noticed that too — not a lot of options for Karl online. It’s definitely one of their best sellers so hopefully they’re just adjusting the colors or something! I know the Kivik is ultra similar just wider arms I think. Good luck! I say go for it. Even if you get only a few years of usage out of it (2-4) for the price that’s pretty good.

  31. Trude says:

    Thanks for sharing these swatches – it’s the only kind of polish I buy anymore! But I’ve actually found wear time to be the same if I use my fave Essie quick dry topcoat instead of their special one.

    I went with a sofa from Wayfair lately and love it – especially the free in-home delivery part! But the bloggers over at Young House Love have had their Karlstad for years and have reviewed it extensively, if that helps. 🙂

  32. Neda says:

    IKEA is a great option esp when you have a little one. We have some IKEA pieces that we mix with higher end stuff and it looks fantastic. In case you wanted to customize the sofa a bit, there are two websites, and that offer cool looking legs for IKEA sofas. Definitely check them out!

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