Category: Fragrance

 
+

Naked Honey Diamond

I did it!

What did I do?

Well…I did several things. I bought the Urban Decay Naked Honey Palette ($49), even though I said I wasn’t going to buy it yet. But I had a good reason! I got my hair cut at Ulta the day after Xmas and it put me SO close to Diamond status – only $52 away…so…

Admittedly, the colors are somewhat similar to the Naked 2 palette, but with a bunch of gold shades added. Even so, it’s a good palette. The colors are creamy and blendable, even more blendable that usual! I also like the brush that came with the palette – it’s great for packing color.

Ulta was having a deal offering any it Brushes for Ulta for $5 (regularly $14) with a palette purchase. I got the Airbrush Blending Crease Brush #105. Since it comes with a cap, I’ll through it in my travel bag for Vegas.

I also threw in a few stock-up items – a L’Oreal Colorista Bleach Highlights Kit ($10.99) and a few packs of Exfoliating Cotton Pads ($3.49). Even though I used a $3.50 off $15 coupon, I qualified for the FREE 23 Piece Sparkler Beauty Bag with $70 purchase.

Inside the Sparkler Beauty Bag: Joico Defy Damage Foilpacks with Shampoo, Conditioner, Protective Masque and Protective Shield; NARS Climax Mascara (I’m using it right now – I like it, it’s not clumpy); Rituals The Rituals of Sakura Sensational Foaming Shower Gel; NEST Fragrances Bamboo & Jasmine; Urban Decay Subversion Volumizing Lash Primer; Giorgio Armani Si Passione; Jean Paul Gaultier Le Male; Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in “Dark Brown” (so tiny!); Too Cool for School Rules of Mastic IX Enhancer (you cannot tell by the name, but this is a skin serum); Vichy Mineral 89 Skin Fortifying Daily Booster; Mamonde Lip Sleeping Mask in “Plum Blossom”; Peter Thomas Roth Peptide 21 Wrinkle Resist Serum; First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream; StriVectin anti-wrinkle SD advanced plus Intensive Moisturizing Concentrate; boscia Luminizing Black Mask; Kenneth Cole Mankind Legacy; Grown Alchemist Hydra-Repair Day Cream; Living proof. Perfect hair Day 5-in-1 styling treatment; Phyto Detox Clarifying Detox Shampoo (no matching conditioner – boo); it cosmetics Confidence in a Cream; NYX Retractable Eye Liner in “White”; Smashbox Always On Liquid Lipstick in “Out Loud”; and Benefit Precisely, My Brow Pencil in 4.5 (another so tiny!). The bag it came in was a glittery blue velvet one, and quite roomy. It might be coming to Vegas with me, too.

So yeah, I’m Ulta Diamond for 2020 – that will give me x1.5 Ulta points and free shipping (over $25)…I’m excited to see what kind of points I can rack up.

+

$4.95?!?!?!

I guess it’s a little late to be very helpful, since the sale was actually last Saturday, but I guess I can brag a little bit…Bath and Body Works had ALL of their body care products for $4.95, AND the deal was stackable with coupons.

I had been planning to wait until the Semi-Annual Sale to try a new scent, but I couldn’t resist the chance to add a new scent to my shower. I had it narrowed down to two new scents – “Into the Night” (an alluring blend of dark berries, midnight jasmine and rich amber) and “Kaleidoscope” (iris, cedarwood, and pink pepper). I was leaning towards “Into the Night” – Lily’s pick – but the store was out of the body wash, so I got “Kaleidoscope” instead. I like how spicy it is! I usually stay away from the more oriental type scents, but I like this one on me. Instead of the Fine Fragrance Mist, I got a Mini Perfume Spray for a stronger scent.

There may be some gifts in this bag…mind ya business.

Oh, and “White Citrus” was back in stock, so I got the Body Soap, plus “Into the Night” and “Thankful” (Frankincense & Myrrh) bubble baths for Lily.

So, coupons…I used a $10 off $30 AND a free item coupon – SCORE!

+

Target Beauty Box – December 2019

I actually caught December’s box in December!

This month’s theme is “Sleigh All Day” – products to help you “sleigh” all day and night. I’ve been using the Renpure Biotin & Collagen Thicken + Strengthen Shampoo and Conditioner. They’ve got a very light smell and they give my hair some texture. The label gave me a good laugh – it says, “These products are tested on our families, not on animals.” Okay, then.

Also helping me “sleigh all day”: Palmer’s Coconut Oil Formula 2 Step Hair Mask (my hair has been dry, so my hair NEEDS this); Biore Deep Cleansing Pore Strips with Charcoal; Lumene Nordic-C Glow Reveal Moisturizer; Good Chemistry Magnolia Violet Perfume (I cannot tell if I like this or not – it reminds me of something?); and Mixed Chicks Coil, Kink & Curl Styling Cream (I’ll be gifting this to someone with curls).

A pretty good little box, even if I don’t use the biggest product – the curl cream.

The box was $7, free shipping, plus 5% off with my Target Red Card. The coupon was $3 off $15 and I haven’t used it yet. I didn’t use last month’s either, a crying shame.

+

Ulta Cyber Monday 2019

Ulta offered a HUGE Wintry Wonders 24 piece Beauty Bag with $80 purchase on Cyber Monday. Of course, I still had some gift shopping left to do…

Obviously, I’m not going to ruin Xmas by showing all the gifts I bought – but I can show the few things I picked up for myself. I’d been wanting to try It Cosmetics Confidence in a Cream Rosy Tone Moisturizer for a bit, but the price ($48) was putting me off. 30% off though – you have my attention. I’ve been using it for nearly a week and it’s too soon to tell if there’s a dramatic change in the tone of my skin – but the texture of my skin is amazing right now. It’s dewy and clear – no breakouts, which is a good sign. I’ll continue to use it, but I’m not sure if I’d buy it again at full price.

I also picked up a sale Makeup Revolution Good Vibes Lip Balm with Cannabis Sativa ($4.90, down from $7). There’s no tint, no fragrance and no taste to this lip balm – I mean, it works as a lip balm, but I think slapping Cannabis on the label is just a selling ploy – there’s nothing a special about this lip balm – disappointing.

So, inside the Wintry Wonders bag: MAC Lipstick Sample Card, with “Velvet Teddy”, “Mocha”, and “Hug Me”; Becca Sample Card with First Light Prioming Filter and Backlight Priming Filter; Tom Ford Metallique (why do all Tom Ford scents smell so old lady?); Rusk Pro Restore01 Leave-In Conditioner; Ralph Lauren Romance; NARS Climax Mascara; Ahava Extreme Minerals Extreme Firming Eye Cream; Sagely Naturals CBD Cream; 18.21 Man-Made Wash in “Sweet Tobacco” (GROSS); Philosophy Purity Made Simple Moisturizer; Clinique Beyond Perfecting Super Concealer Camouflage + 24-Hour Wear Sample Card; Juice Beauty Phyto-Pigments Flawless Serum Foundation Sample Card (I’ll put it on my Jade Egg); Boscia Purifying Cleansing Gel; Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion; Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer; Marc Jacobs Daisy; Unwined by Hask Red Wine Inspired Repairing Shampoo & Conditioner (very interested in trying this – even though I’m allergic to red wine – it should be okay, as long as I don’t drink it); Marvis Classic Strong Mint Toothpaste; Mario Badescu Botanical Exfoliating Scrub; Too Cool for School Pumpkin Sleeping Pack; Hempz Blushing Grapefruit & Raspberry Creme Daily Herbal Color Preserving Conditioner (but no shampoo???); Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow Gel in “Dark Brown” (Yasssss…cannot wait to try it); Giorgio Armani Light di Gioia (surprisingly, it’s not horrible – reminds me of sunflowers); and Living proof. restore Perfecting Spray. This is a really nice bag, full of brand new products for the most part.

In addition to the gift with purchase, I was able to use a $10 off coupon on my order. $157 to Diamond…so close!

+

More Ulta Friendsgiving

So I received my second Ulta Friendsgiving order right before Thanksgiving, but I’ve been sick AF since Monday…the whole damn house needs to be quarantined!

So many good sales before Black Friday and Cyber Monday! What could I pick up to get me to $65 for that 23 Piece Friendsgiving Beauty Besties Beauty Bag???

I had been drooling over the Hask Rose Oil & Peach Shampoo and Conditioner ($5.99 each) since I saw them at Walgreen’s a few months ago. I knew they would eventually show up at Ulta, so I waited. It sounds weird, but the shampoo is more rose scented and the conditioner is more peach scented – why? They are a more budget-friendly choice than the Redken and Nexxus products I’ve been buying lately and work just as well. They smell less salon-y, too.

I noticed that Mamonde Petal Spa Oil to Foam Cleanser was half off ($10.50, down from $21) AND came with a free gift! I’ve gotten several samples in beauty boxes and really like the scent, so I splurged. The free gift was three samples: Mamonde Petal Spa Oil to Foam Cleanser, Mamonde Rose Water Toner, and Mamonde Plum Blossom Lip Sleeping Mask. Since I cannot resist anything rose, I also picked up the new Biore Rose Quartz + Charcoal Pore Refining Scrub ($7.99) – it’s very gentle.

I hadn’t gotten my first Friendsgiving order yet when I placed this one, so I ended up adding two more Zoya Remove+ ($10 each) to my cart – oops!

Inside that hot pink sequined Beauty Besties Bag: ANOTHER Mamonde Petal Spa Oil to Foam Cleanser (happy to have it for travel); Redken Color Extend Magnetics Shampoo & Conditioner (I just used up a full size of the conditioner, but still have some of the shampoo left); Maybelline The Colossal Mascara; Yves Saint Laurent L’Homme; Anastasia Beverly Hills Lip Gloss in “Moon Jelly”; Giorgio Armani Acqua di Gioia; Prada Candy (2 of these, so Lily got one); bareMinerals Complexion Rescue Sample Card; it Cosmetics Blurring Foundation No 101; Benefit The POREfessional; Philosophy Purity Made Simple 3-in-1 Cleanser for Face and Eyes; Peach & Lily Glass Skin Refining Serum (looking forward to trying this); Paradoxx Secret Weapon Conditioner (why is this hair conditioner in a little metal tin that will immediately rust in my shower?); Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara; Ulta Beauty Sugared Vanilla Moisturizing Body Lotion; Moschino Toy 2; Ulta Beauty Charcoal Nose Strips; La Roche-Posay Toleriane Double Repair Moisturizer; Bed Head Small Talk; Love Wellness Lights Out Dietary Supplements (ooooh, sleeping pills that probably won’t work on me!); John Varvatos Eau de Toilette; Elizabeth Arden Advanced Ceramide Capsules; and Hempz Pink Pomelo & Himalyan Sea Salt Herbal Body Moisturizer. Phew – my fingers are tired. These are really good samples – I will use at least 75% of them!

In case you are noticing that the math doesn’t add up, there were a few other items that I added to my cart that will be Xmas gifts. Shhhh…don’t tell!

I got to use a $10 off coupon, in addition to the many sales. Just $319 to Diamond…

+

November 2019 Sephora Play! – Beauty for Self-Care

Self-Care? Let me tell you, I self-cared the fuck out of myself last week. I laid my ass on the couch every day…and enjoyed every minute of it. I think I put a mask on my face every single day, except one. I’m paying for it now, though – I went back to work today and ended up staying until 6:30….and to top it off, I think I’m coming down with a cold. FRACK.

November’s Play! box is a six heavenly samples to help me with my self-care. I was most excited to sample the Clinique Almost Lipstick in “Black Honey”. My lips have been feeling dried out and it was a nice change from my drying liquid lipsticks. The color didn’t last very long though, not even until lunch.

Also in this month’s box: NARS Lipstick in Tolede (haven’t tried yet); Glamglow GLOWSTARTER Mega Illuminating Moisturizer in “Nude Glow” (I LOVE this stuff); Lancome Hypnose Drama Instant Full Body Mascara; Dr. Jart+ Cicapair Tiger Grass Color Correcting Treatment SPF 30 (I got this a few Decembers ago – it’s decent); and Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium (too strong for me).

Sephora Play gives you 5-6 prestige samples a month, for just $10! You can sign up at sephora.com/play

+

The Lolita Por Vida Palette

Ohhhh…Kat Von D‘s newest palette might be my favorite ever. it launched in early October, but I knew that my 20% off was coming, so I held off on ordering it. Say hello to “Lolita Por Vida” ($49.50).

I’ve used this palette every day for the past week and I am in LOVE with it. I’ve sampled all but 3-4 of the shades and they are all supremely blendable. The absolute best shade is that rose gold glitter, “reina”. It gave me full coverage in one swipe, with NO PRIMER. The fallout was minimal and it stayed all day. The one downside is getting the glitter off – it’s nearly impossible. I used liquid soap, a makeup eraser, but finally had the best luck with micellar water on a cotton pad.

I also picked up a Lock-It Powder Foundation Refill in “Fair 120”, since I hit pan on my current one. The refills are just $23, compared to $36 for the full compact – that’s a great deal. More makeup brands should do this!

So…I’ve been feeling a bit weird about continuing to buy Kat Von D’s makeup – I’ve been feeling uncomfortable about her anti-vaxx statements and other recent missteps. But then when I think about it, are there any celebrities who are not batshit insane? And are there any beauty influencers that are not batshit insane and/or soulless shills? I guess I am erring on the side of assuming positive intent – maybe Kat is just ignorant of the science behind vaccines and NOT blatantly disregarding the health of her child?

I actually got both of the samples that I chose: Dior Miss Dior Blooming Bouquet and philosophy Amazing Grace.

$485 to Rouge status…I’d also used my code for Xmas shopping, but I don’t think I’ll be getting to Rouge for next year.

+

Ulta Persistence

Ulta had been sending me emails with a 20% off code for at least two weeks – sometimes two a day. They knew I would break down eventually…

I’d been pining for Black Moon Cosmetics “DeVille” ($18) since it launched, but I’d been waiting for Ulta to carry it, so I could get the points. It is the perfect, metallic red. I might as well throw all of my other red lipsticks in the bin – this one is PERFECT. Who am I kidding, you can never have too many red lipsticks. I also picked up Black Moon “Haunting” ($18), a deep purplish brown. Ulta, please pick up the rest of the Black Moon line!

I also decided to try out Mandelic Acid 10% from The Ordinary ($6.80). I’ve been reading about fungal acne and wondering if that might be a factor in the breakouts on my chest. Several articles indicated that the antibacterial properties of Mandelic Acid are a miracle cure, so why not try it. I’ve only been using it for a few days, so it’s too soon to tell…

We put highlights in my son’s hair again, so I picked up a Travel Size of Joico Colors Balance Purple Shampoo ($4.99) to tone down some of the brassiness. I also wanted to try an Eyeshadow Stamp ($4.20, down from $6). I forgot that I ordered it and haven’t tried it yet.

When I ordered, the Beauty Break gift with purchase was a 9 piece bath sampler, which included Soap & Glory The Righteous Butter; Iroha Nature Hand Mask Repair Gloves (I am excited to try these – we are barely a week into cold weather and my hands are already dry and cracked); YUNI Shower Sheets (a huge wet wipe?); bliss That’s Incredi-peel; The Body Shop Drops of Youth (I’ve been wanting to try this!); Megababe Deodorant Wipes (so does Ulta think I am stanky?); Ahava Time to Clear Purifying Mud Mask; Start Happy Geranium & Peppermint Body Wash; and a NEST Fragrances Body Mist Collection (4 fragrances: Bamboo & Jasmine, Ocean Mist & Coconut Water, Ginger & Neroli, and Grapefruit & Verbena).

$419 to Diamond status.

+

September 2019 Sephora Play ! – Must-See Beauty

September’s “Must-See Beauty” box is a banger…well, almost.

I was warned ahead of time about the Amika Bushwick Beach No-Salt Wave Spray. My friend Michelle got it in her box and tried it – it turned her into a scarecrow! She said it turned her hair into straw – no thank you! Also, I’ve never heard of Bushwick Beach, but I have heard of Bushwick Bill, RIP.

The rest of the box is good though: Benefit Gimme Brow + Volumizing Eyebrow Gel in 3; Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash in “Black”; First Aid Beauty Hello FAB Pores Be Gone Matte Primer (I cannot WAIT to try this – I am almost finished with the First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Hyaluronic Hydrating Primer from my June Ipsy); Fresh Sugar Strawberry Exfoliating Face Wash (I LOVE this face wash – I have the full size; and Yves Saint Laurent Libre Eau de Parfum (no – ew).

Sephora Play gives you 5-6 prestige samples a month, for just $10! You can sign up at sephora.com/play

+

Sephora SUMMER SAVE

It’s that time of year again…Sephora’s end-of-summer sale event – 20% off!

I had been keeping Rosebud Perfume Co. Rose & Mandarin Lip Balm ($8) in my cart for my next order, so I finally got it! It’s subtle scented and very slick – I’ve been using it before bedtime.

The email with my promo code showed me the new Moroccanoil Color Depositing Masks, so I ordered two Minis ($7) – “Aquamarine” and “Hibiscus” – I’ll have to wait another few weeks until my hair fades more, but I am excited to try them.

Not impressed by her latest launches, I did order one of the new Kat Von D Kitten Minis – Crush on Blush – Highlighter + Blush Duo ($22). The blush shade is “Nova” which matches my fave lipstick “Lolita” perfectly – it’s a better match than my actual “Lolita” blush. I’ve been using the highlighter, “Gammaray” for eyeshadow – I LOVE it.

I wasn’t planning on getting a new foundation, but I was poking around on the site and came across bareMinerals Blemish Rescue Skin-Clearing Loose Powder Foundation for Acne Prone Skin in “2N” ($29). When I opened it up, my first thought was FUCK, it’s too dark. That’s what I get for letting the site choose for me – I had them match the last foundation that I felt was a really good match for me, Fenty Beauty in “150”. Once I got it on my face, it wasn’t really too dark – darker than my usual, but not too dark. This is a full coverage powder – more full coverage than I am used to, so I may save it for special occasions and not wear it to work every day. It wears okay, but I feel like it oxidizes by the end of day – maybe not the best for summer sweating.

Again, I got neither of the two samples I picked. Instead of REPLICA Whispers in the Library, I got Lancome La vie est Belle. Instead of Glamglow Waterburst, I got Clinique iD Dramatically Different Hydrating Jelly. Boo.

I know if probably doesn’t seem like it, but I’ve really reduced my spending this year. This order doesn’t quite get me to VIB status for 2020 – my total spend year-to-date has been $338, believe it or not. Another $662 just isn’t in the cards this year, unless I win the lottery!