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December Sephora Play! – Award Worthy Beauty

The last Sephora box of the year contains “Award Worthy” beauty products. These products haven’t actually won awards…but are worthy of an award? Sure, ok…

I just tried that new Anastasia Beverly Hills Dip Brow Gel in “Dark Brown” last week – I’d gotten a sample in the Ulta Cyber Monday Bag. It’s…different. The product is a lot like mascara – it sticks to the little invisible baby hairs on your face and turns them into eyebrow hairs, so you have to be very careful and precise in application. I was not precise and ended up looking like Brooks Shields. It was very odd, but fairly realistic, at least compared to the current gradient brow trend, which I HATE. With a little practice, I think I could become good at applying the Dip Brow Gel. Or maybe a lot of practice?

Other “Award Worthy” products in December’s box: Urban Decay All-Nighter Long-Lasting Setting Spray; Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Cream Shadow Stick in “Golden Pink”; Tarte Rainforest of the Sea – Drink of H2O Hydrating Boost Moisturizer; Sol de Janeiro Brazilian Bum Bum Cream (I love this stuff, it smells good enough to eat); and Living proof. No Frizz Nourishing Styling Cream.

Sephora Play gives you 5-6 prestige samples a month, for just $10! You can sign up at sephora.com/play. I just noticed that this month’s box did not include a 50 point Play! Pass – rude.

I did NOT hit Sephora Rouge status this year, the first time in…5 years! My total spend was $525, so at least I made VIB status. All of my discounts in 2020 will be 15% instead of 20% and with my first order, I’ll order Sephora Flash, which is now $15 (up from $10).

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Semi Annual Stuff

Don’t you hate it when you try out a new scent and it’s immediately discontinued?

I JUST added “Kaleidoscope” to my shower – barely a few weeks ago – and now it appears to be discontinuing! It’s all 75% off. Well boo. I picked up two more Body Washes to be used later.

I also got two more “Winter” Hand Soaps at 75% off – I didn’t go crazy on the $3 soaps, because I just stocked up at $2.50.

My daughter’s Wallflower broke, so I picked her up a cute Santa Doggie one, along with 5 more $3 Wallflowers. I probably should’ve gotten more – I’m running low. Who am I kidding, I’m sure I’ll be back to the sale.

Since I didn’t get that much stuff, I used the 20% off $25 coupon in my email, instead of the $10 off $40 mailer, so I still have a coupon to use. I was hoping to see Rose Water & Ivy show back up for the sale, but it hasn’t popped back up yet.

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Snowy Clarity

If I waited until it actually snowed, I’d never get to wear these cute little Snowflake Decals from Julep. Shit, I wouldn’t get to wear then if I merely waited for it to get chilly here in Texas. I am enjoying winter vicariously through my fingernails!

I started with one of my new polishes – Julep “Clarity” from the Intention Collection, lucid azure duochrome. This is two coats of “Clarity” over Glisten & Glow Ridge Filling Base Coat. I used tweezers to carefully place the snowflakes on my nails. They are super fragile and I did tear a few of them…and that’s how I ended up with a half a snowflake on my index finger. It turned out cute, I think. I topped the snowflakes with Glisten & Glow Top Coat.

These nails remind me of Frozen…let it go, let it goooooooo.

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December 2019 Allure Beauty Box – The Mother of All Brows

December’s Allure Beauty Box was curated by Anastasia Soare – yes, THAT Anastasia…of Anastasia Beverly Hills. The box includes several of Anastasia’s products, as well as a few of her other favorites.

The centerpiece of the box is the Anastasia Beverly Hills Moonchild Glow Kit, a palette of 6 highlighters. Just this kit alone is worth $40, although it’s currently on sale for $24 at Ulta. Honestly, I don’t use highlighters very often and I already have the Kat Von D Alchemy palette, which is similar…but I have been trying the shades as eyeshadow and I like the way they look as a understated, glowy look.

In addition to the Glow Kit, the other ABH products included were Liquid Lipstick in “Bohemian” ($20) and Clear Brow Gel ($22). I really like the lipstick – it’s a dark brick red. I don’t have much use for the brow gel.

The other products included were First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Face Moisturizer (full size!) and Christophe Robin Cleansing Purifying Scrub with Sea Salt.

This is such a high value box – $82 just in Anastasia Beverly Hills products alone!

The Allure Beauty Box is $15/month, but they give you $5 off your first box. They also offer an option for $150/year – a savings of $30. Sign up via my referral link.

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Twisted Peppermint

A crushed peppermint…or a Snowman murder? It could be either. Let’s split the different and call it “Twisted Peppermint”.

Since I used Funky Fingers “Elsa”, I wanted to use Julep “Elsa”, too. This “Elsa” is a frosty iridescent textured polish – it reminds me of windshield frost. I started with Glisten & Glow Ridge Filling Base Coat and two coats of “Elsa”. I wanted to see how Julep “Ruby Slippers” would look in a gradient, so I tested it on my ring finger. It is a really concentrated glitter, so I just went ahead and covered the whole nail. I decided to use Sinful Colors “Decadent”, a much sparser red glitter, instead to gradient the tips.

I really like how it turned out. Even though I didn’t use a top coat, it lasted a really long time. There something to b e said for light, neutral polishes.

So I kind of did something similar about 4 years ago, using Sinful Colors “Tokyo Pearl” for the base instead of “Elsa”. I like this version better.

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December 2019 Ipsy Bag – Shine On

Shine on? Well, I certainly will try…

I did not miss the product choice window this month – I selected BELIF The True Cream Moisturizing Bomb. I’ve gotten this sample at least a dozen times from different subscription boxes and purchases and it is a really good moisturizing cream.

Also in this month’s silver pleather bag: FLUIDE 7-Free Nail Polish in “Strut” (I love a good gunmetal nail polish); Aromatica Rose Absolute First Serum (looking forward to trying this serum in my favorite scent); Beauty for Real Lip Gloss + Shine in “Sunlight”; and Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof Bronzer in “Park Ave Princess” (what is the point of waterproof bronzer???).

An interesting box, but the products seem more summery than wintery – maybe they know I’m in Texas and it is currently 75 degrees outside?

I subscribe to the basic ipsy bag for $12/month. If you’d like to try Ipsy – click here. I’ll earn 250 points if you sign up through my referral link.

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Starry Frida

I was excited to try yet another red nail polish – Frida Kahlo x Ulta “Romance”.

“Romance” is a great basic red polish. It was not too sheer – full coverage in two coats without a visible nail line. This is two coats over Glisten & Glow Ridge Filling Base Coat.

I was going for a holiday look when I picked Sinful Colors “Starry Eyed” for my accent nails, but it turned out more patriotic. Oops.

I topped my first three nails with Glisten & Glow Top Coat and used Glisten & Glow Matte Top Coat on the last two.

I am in love with how this polish looks mattified – it’s giving me inspiration for another holiday look…

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Ulta Stocking Stuffers

I picked up quite a few more last minute gifts from Ulta, using a 20% off coupon. Again, not sharing the gifts and stocking stuffers, but the few goodies I added for myself.

I’ve been eyeing the Urban Decay “Sweet Little Vices” Set for a bit and half price ($12.50, down from $25) was the right price. It includes 4 mini lipsticks to match (flavor AND color scheme) the last several Naked palettes – Naked Honey, Naked Cherry and Naked Heat. (I don’t have the Naked Honey palette…yet..but I have about $73 in Ulta points, so I probably will get it after the new year). The shades are “California Honey”honey-flavored metallic golden orange w/ gold shimmer, “Keep Tame”honey-flavored sheer medium warm nude, “Bing”cherry-flavored bright pink comfort matte, and “Red Hot”cinnamon-flavored bright red comfort matte.

Did I need another red nail polish? No, but “Romance” from the Frida Kahlo x Ulta Collection Collab was also half price ($3.75, down from $7.50).

Oh, and another Scunci Octopus clip ($2.97). I thought I it would hold more hair than the ones I have, but it barely holds all my hair. I have too much hair right now.

Just $97 to Diamond status for 2020. I booked a haircut for the day after Xmas, so that should push me over the edge!

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$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!

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Vinsy

With 14 new polishes to choose from in my last Julep order, it was really hard to choose which one to try first. I narrowed it down to trying a polish from the Hypnotic Frenzy set…but that was still 6 polishes to choose from. The sparkle of Julep “Vinsy” caught my attention.

“Vinsy” is a coppery pink metallic glitter. The base is slightly tinted, which is good because my nails are mucho stained. I started with Glisten & Glow Ridge Filling Base Coat, and then two coats of “Vinsy”. I got good coverage in just two coats – I think I could’ve gotten 100% coverage with three, but I knew I would never get three coats off. I topped it with Glisten & Glow Top Coat.