But is it really splurging if it’s on the sale page?
I hadn’t used my $10 off birthday code at Ulta yet, so I filled my cart on the sale page. Actually, let me back up. I was scrolling the Sephora Presidents Day sale and saw that the Jackie Aina and Carli Bybel palettes from Anastasia Beverly Hills were 30% off, so I decided to redirect that purchase over to Ulta – not only because I have a coupon, but also because I feel like I get more value from being top tier at Ulta than being top tier at Sephora. Also, Ulta has BOMB GWPs.
Ulta didn’t have the Jackie Aina palette, but the DID have the Anastasia Beverly Hills Carly Bybel Palette ($31.50, down from $45). That’s fine, because the Jackie Aina palette looks a little cray. (I was hoping that the Alyssa Edwards palette would be back, but nope.) I only know Carli from the Allure Beauty Box she did last year. I was thinking that the palette would end up being pretty basic, but it’s got a nice selection of colors, with lots of shimmer and glitter. I’m enjoying using it, except that the glitter shades have the fallout from hell. It sprays all over my whole damn face. Primer helps a little bit, but it still gets everywhere. I’m gonna have to work on it.
I also decided to go out on a limb and try the Lime Crime Venus XS Vixen Palette ($10, down from $20). I’ve stayed away from Lime Crime for the most part because the owner was a shitbag, but since selling out in 2018, it appears they’ve turned their reputation around. The XS Vixen is a small red-themed palette. The quality is just OK – it doesn’t blend very well at all and the coverage is splotchy. Looks like I can continue to ignore this brand.
One more sale purchase – an Urban Decay Cosmetics Brow Beater Microfine Brow Pencil and Brush in “Dark” ($10, down from $20). I’m guessing that it’s on clearance because they are discontinuing it…which is fine. The quality is fine, similar to Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz, but still not as good (for me) as the Ulta Ultra Slim Brow Pencil.
I picked up the new Pacifica Sunshine Highs Toning Shampoo & Conditioner ($10 each) for my son’s bleached locks. I got it in preparation for another round of highlights, so probably next week or so.
There was also a free 28 piece beauty bag with a $70 purchase. You know I cannot get enough of those GWPs. Inside this HUGE red bag: Elizabeth Arden Prevage Anti-Aging Daily Serum; LORAC Pro Plus Fiber Mascara (eek, those fiber mascaras scare me); PUR Fully Charged Mascara; Boots No7 Dark Circle Corrector; Mamonde Petal Spa Oil to Foam (I have 3 sample bottles of this now – thanks, Ulta); Living proof. restore perfecting spray; Stila Stay All Day Liquid Lipstick in “Patina” (I really like this shade – I wonder if my old one is dried up?); proactivMD Deep Cleansing Face Wash (I used proactive back when it first came out; it worked for a while, but then ate all my skin off); Becca Ever-Matte Poreless Priming Perfector; Clinique Dramatically Different Hydrating Jelly; First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream; It’s a 10 Miracle Finishing Spray; Shiseido Benefiance WrinkleResist 24 Pure Retinol Express Smoothing Eye Mask; Patchology Flashpatch Illuminating Eye Gels (so many damn eye patches – I feel like a fucking pirate); TonyMoly Vital Vita 12 Ampoules Mix & Match Serums; Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder and Glow Powder; DevaCurl Supercream (no curls here, go will give away); Viktor & Rolf Bon Bon; Zitsticka (intrigued); Botanics Simply Calm; Ulta Beauty Matte Black Eyeliner; Biolage Airdry Glotion (what?); Pureology Colour Fanatic; Smashbox Photo Finish Oil & Shine Control; Giorgio Armani Acqua Di Gio; e.l.f. Poreless Primer Putty (oh, this is some GOOD stuff – I like it); Cover FX High Performance Setting Spray and Florence by Mills Clean Magic Face Wash (what does that girl from Stranger Things know about beauty products?) A dang good bag!
$1,088 to Diamond. I better step it up!
Cyber Fundays 2018
View this post on Instagram
This Xmas, I did my Ulta shopping BEFORE Thanksgiving, during the “Cyber Fundays” event. They had some smoking deals that I couldn’t pass up! There were also some decent Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals, but mostly on stuff I already had, like half price Modern Renaissance and Naked Heat. Boo!
If you’re thinking that this order looks skimpy…it’s because I pulled out the gifts I ordered for my daughter. She doesn’t come here, but her brother does – and I trust him about as far as I can throw him with one hand.
I was excited to snatch the NYX Lip Snacks Soft Matte Metallic Lip Cream Set ($15, down from $25) for myself. It’s a set of 12 minis of my favorite lip formula from NYX, specially scented like buttercream. I’ve onlhy sampled 2 so far, but they are the BEST. I also got a half-price Urban Decay Razor Sharp Water-Resistant Longwear Liquid Eyeliner in “Demolition” ($11, down from $22) – I think a shiny brown cat eye will look good on me.
The biggest bummer was a broken bottle in the China Glaze The Grinch Grinchworthy Nail Art Duo ($10). It wasn’t the “Grinchworthy” polish itself, but the “For Rhinestones Only” adhesive – the stem of the bottle broke inside the cap and it leaked everywhere. I called Ulta Customer Service and they sent me out another one immediately, no questions asked – so now I have 2 bottles of “Grinchworthy” and 2 pots of green felt. I cannot wait to make my nails look like Astroturf! Oh, and I got another tidbit from Customer Service – they won’t be including samples in orders again until January. Cheap bastards.
I added a bottle of Zoya Remove+ to get me over the $65 mark, to get the glittery pink 18-piece Cyber Fundays sample bag. The sample bag was STUFFED – it had: Too Faced Glitter Glue (saving for a special occasion); Cover FX Blurring Primer; Urban Decay Perversion Mascara; Patchology Flashpatch Restoring Night Eye Gels (this is the third set I’ve gotten – I guess I should use them); philosophy Renewed Hope in a Jar; Clinique Happy; 2 Anastasia Beverly Hills Lip Glosses in “Vintage” (2!!!); Lime Crime Unicorn Hair in “bunny” (ugh, another one); bliss lemon & sage body butter; Biolage Hydra Source Shampoo & Conditioner; L’Oreal Paris Voluminous Primer/Base for Mascara; philosophy Amazing Grace; Armani Code Cashmere; Skin Laundry Hydrating Cream Face Wash; L’Oreal Paris Pure-Clay Cleanser Detox-Brighten (this black one is my fave); MAC False Lashes Mascara in “Extreme Black”; and Clinique Moisture Surge Hydrating Supercharged Concentrate. There were also 2 hot coupons – $15 off $75 (only good in December) and another $5 off $15 Ulta Beauty Collection (good until 2/1/19).
I was also able to use a $10 off coupon, bringing my order down to $64.49 before tax – but I still got the bag. I was sweating for a hot minute! Just $301 to Diamond…I do predict another order before the end of the year, but not that much!
Fire Dragon vs. Ice Dragon
View this post on Instagram
I never really cared about wet n wild makeup – not since Junior High anyway – until they started putting out these awesome collections. I am still peeved that I missed the Goth-o-Graphic Box, but it never hit Ulta as promised.
I did NOT miss the Fire Dragon vs. Ice Dragon Collection Box ($39.99). Inside the Limited Edition box are two set of products – a set of warm toned Fire Dragon products and a set of cool toned Ice Dragon products. I’ve only had a chance to play with the Fire Dragon side, so I might be a little bit biased towards that side. The Fire Side includes Coloricon Loose Pigment in “Gilded Crown” and “Fire Reign”; Coloricon Bronzer in “You’re Dragon Me Down” and “Queen’s Land”; Coloricon Eyeshadow Quad in “Fit for a Queen”; and Megalast Liquid Catsuit Metallic Lipstick in “Queen’s Blood” and “Redlings”. I am IN LOVE with using both shades of lipstick together. The Ice Side includes Coloricon Loose Pigments in “Ice, Ice, Lady” and “To-Knight’s Blue”; Megaglo Highlighting Powder in “Winter Falls in LA” and “Halo Walkers”; Coloricon Eyeshadow Quad in “Mythicool Creatures”; and Megalast Liquid Catsuit Metallic Lipsticks in “Icing on the Wall” and “Shall We Slay”. Lots of cool stuff I still need to play with!
I didn’t stop there. I had added a Pacifica Summer Kale Lip Balm ($1.25) from the sale page. Luckily, it does NOT smell or taste like Kale. I also added the e.l.f. Glow on the Go Selfie Light ($12) this thing is an absolute game changer – no more walking around the bedroom, looking for the perfect light – it makes every selfie perfect. This purchase also got me a gift with purchase – an e.l.f. makeup bag with foil samples of Poreless Face Primer and Hydrating Bubble Mask.
And then I found a BOGO 50% on L’Oreal products. I had been wanting to try their new chocolate lippies AKA L’Oreal Infallible Pro Matte Liquid Lipstick Les Chocolat ($9.99), so I ordered 4 out of the 6 shades – “70% Yum”, “Candy Man”, “Dose of Cocoa”, and “Box O Chocolate”. I’ve only had a chance to try out the first two and they have a really strong chocolate smell when you apply them, but the scent is gone as soon as it dries, which take a little minute. I kind of wanted the smell to stick around, but then I remembered how much my husband used to hate this chocolate lip gloss I used to wear to bed – he said it smelled like “chocolate ass”. Personally, I liked the way it smelled…but whatever. They also are very “infallible” – I had to use strong eye makeup remover to get them off my lips. They WILL last all day, whether you want them to or not. ANYWAY, this purchase also garnered me a gift with purchase – a L’Oreal makeup bag with samples of Pure Clay Cleanser Detox-Brighten (my favorite); Age Perfect Eye Renewal Eye Cream; and Voluminous Mascara Primer/Base.
On top of ALL that, I also got another gift with purchase for using my Ultamate Rewards Card – a reversible sequin makeup bag filled with samples. I am pretty sure my daughter is gonna fight me for this bag. Inside samples included: StriVectin Multi-Action Restorative Cream; Lab Series Future Rescue; dermalogica Rapid Reveal Peel (package says professional-grade, so does that mean I’ll lose 7 layers of skin?); Matrix Biolage Volume Bloom Aqua-Gel Conditioner (what? no shampoo???); Algenist Ultimate Anti-Aging Melting Cleanser; Algenist Genius White Brightening Anti-Aging Cream; tarte Amazonian Clay 12-hour Highlighter in “exposed”; and an itty bitty sample of Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in “Dark Brown” (my shade!). Pretty nice perk for just a $40 purchase. Oh and my regular samples were pretty lame – a card with 3 sample shades of Clinique 2-in-1 Beyond Perfecting Foundation + Concealer and Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb Bonbon. I did remember use a $3.50 off coupon from an email, but this was still a big order for me – over $80. It will pay off in the long term, as there was a 5x points promo running when I ordered.
Just $453 until Diamond Status. Oh, and somehow, I have accrued $86 worth of Ulta Points (see above promo)…I’ve got my eye on that new Urban Decay Naked Cherry Palette – it would match my hair!
October Birchbox – Behind the Scenes Beauty
…And I’m back to the curated box option this month.
Really, I wanted the Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate. Kiehl’s is really good stuff! I’m also happy to try the Matrix Biolage R.A.W. Uplift Shampoo and Conditioner – matching deluxe samples of each! No foil packs!
Also in this month’s “Behind the Scenes Beauty” box: [comfort zone] Hydramemory Cream Gel and Stila Cosmetics Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner (I feel like I have at least 6 of these).
Quite a good box this month…keep it up, Birchbox!
If you would like to try Birchbox, click on my referral link – https://www.birchbox.com/invite/5453f – I’ll get 50 points if you join.
HUGE Ulta Haul
Those “gift with purchase” deals get me every time. Last week, Ulta was offering a pink plastic Beauty Bag, filled with samples – free to Platinum Members with a $60 purchase. There just happened to be $60 of stuff I needed…a back-up Urban Decay Naked Skin Ultra Definition Finishing Powder in “Medium Light”…2 more Freeman Beauty Masks that were BOGH (I’m a total mask addict now) – Avocado & Oatmeal Clay and Golden Grain Brightening…5 Ulta Brilliant Color Lip Glosses on sale for $3 each – “Rich Plum”, “Toast” (a back-up), “Spice”, “Guava”, and “Cupcake”…and I broke down and tried Poo-Pourri in “Rosy Cheeks” (I tried it earlier today – although I didn’t smell poo-poo, it seemed to be a mostly non-offensive load – more research is needed).
Inside my beautiful pink bag (perfect for my upcoming Vegas trip): Lancôme Defincils Mascara in “Black”; Ulta Sweet Fantasy Vanilla and Caramel Silky Smooth Body Lotion; it Cosmetics No-Tug Waterproof Gel Eyeliner in “Black-Brown”; Juice Organics Brightening Shampoo and Conditioner; Dolce & Gabbana “light blue – Sunset in Salina” (reminds me of my mom – smells a little bit like “Lauren”); it’s a 10 Miracle Leave-In for Blondes (I gave away the last one I got, but I’ll give this blonde version a try); Thierry Mugler “Angel” (I think a friend of mine wear this – so I never will); Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion (I have SO many samples of this shit); Whish Body Butter in “Almond”; Biolage Matrix Exquisite Oil; dermalogica Ultrasmoothing Eye Serum; Laura Geller Baked Liquid Radiance Foundation in “Golden Medium”; Juice Beauty Stem Cellular Booster Serum (good stuff – I used up my last sample); Kate Spade “Live Color Fully” (I might actually wear this one); Benefit It’s Potent eye Benefit cream; and a mini Ulta Brilliant Gloss in “Toast” (I guess I didn’t need that back-up I ordered?). Gee, I’ve got finger cramps from typing.
Two more samples came with my order – HASK Coconut Monoi Oil Shampoo and Conditioner and Cargo HD Picture Perfect CC Cream. I also used my $3.50 coupon. Excited to play with my new stuff!
Sometimes, Ulta has an offer I can’t refuse. The Urban Decay Vice Ltd Palette for $39 (normally $58) was an offer I couldn’t refuse, especially with a $10 off ANYTHING coupon.
When I opened the palette and ooohed and ahhhed over the colors, I excitedly told my husband that there’s a color called “Backdoor” and it’s BROWN! My son said, “But our back door is white?” I hope he stays young and naive forever.
I also got Urban Decay Naked Skin Beauty Balm in “Medium”. I had been searching everywhere for “Light” – in several stores, online, but no luck…except on the Urban Decay site and they won’t give me points. Luckily, I tried “Medium” this morning and it looked exactly the same on me as “Light”. So, I dunno what the point of having two colors is.
My samples were a tiny little card with a smidge of Benefit The POREfessional (insulting!) and Biolage keratindose Shampoo and Conditioner.
Thanksgiving Ulta Haul
That’s right – at 7:30 AM, as we were driving to the in-laws’ place for Thanksgiving breakfast, I was Ulta shopping on my phone…
I cannot share my whole shipment, because again – there’s a gift. I can share the Ulta Nude Eye Shadow Palette that I gifted to myself. I couldn’t resist – it was $6 – half price! (If you haven’t noticed, I am HORRIBLE at Xmas shopping – I always end up buying more stuff for myself than anyone else!) I tried it this morning and was suitable impressed with the quality. It’s a bit odd that all of the shadows are pressed together in the same pan, but they are domed, so they don’t really infringe on each other. The palette didn’t come with a brush – it came with a foam applicator, which I actually prefer for my crease. I was underwhelmed with the applicator for the rest of my eye, so I;ll probably use one of my other brushes going forward.
I chose the variety sample pack and received L’Oreal Total Repair Extreme Reconstructing Shampoo, Conditioner and Emergency Recovery Mask; Biolage fiberstrong Intra-Cylane Fortifying Cream (huh?); and Amazing Cosmetics VelvetMineral Liquid Foundation in Medium-Beige (probably too dark). I’ll never need to steal hotel shampoo again!
Sick of looking at my fingernails? Let me tell you about the Ulta mail that was in my mailbox today after I went shopping at Ulta…
I’m not sharing all of the items in my box yet – more gifts – but in addition to the gifts, I picked up my first essie polish – essie luxeffects “Set in Stones”. I also got Sparitual Luminary Top Effect “Opaline”. I saw it in the store over Spring Break and I’ve been thinking about it non-stop, so why not?
My gift with purchase was samples from it Cosmetics by Jamie Kern (never heard of them before) – Vitality Lip Blush Hydrating Lip Gloss Stain in “Naturally Flushed”, Bye Bye Under Eye Full Coverage Anti-Aging Waterproof Concealer and a tiny packet of Medium CC+ Cream – bummed that it will be WAY too dark for me.
My free samples were Biolage Exquisite Oil Shampoo and Conditioner, DevaCurl Ultra Defining Gel and Ouidad Climate Control Heat and Humidity Gel. I need to stop getting hair shit samples…
Late Ulta Post
I was so caught up in my fingernails, I didn’t do my Ulta post last week. As you’re reading this…pretend it’s last Friday…
After visiting Bath & Body Works and Bed, Bath & Beyond, I slunk over to Ulta. I was ready to spend some money! The first thing I hit was the nail polish. I wanted to try Zoya Pixie Dust. No dice. This location didn’t have a Pixie Dust display.
My next stop was back to the front to test high end BB Creams. First I tried Benefit “Big Easy,” which claims to be “Better than BB” right on the tube. It was shit and settled into every pore and crack on my wrist. I moved on to Smashbox BB. It was even grosser. Why do all these high end cosmetics company call their products BB Cream, when they’re plain old foundation? I tried a few more brands, but it was too late – I was devastated…
Then I tried to buy a gift for someone and this location was out of stock of what I was looking for. Fuck.
After aimlessly wandering down every aisle, I finally realized that I couldn’t find a single thing to buy. I think I have a mental block and was unable to buy anything without my bestie there with me. (She had the same thing happen to her at Ulta earlier this week – I wasn’t there and she couldn’t find anything to buy either!) I was sad until I got home and checked the mail…and found my Lucky Mystery Box AND a box of stuff I ordered from Ulta.com last week!
I used a $3.50 off coupon to try Physician’s Formula BB Cream. I freaked out at first when I saw I received “Light/Medium,” until I realized that it’s the lightest color available. I tried it on my face and it is actually a good match, maybe one tick too dark for me. By summertime, it will be perfect. It’s a lighter texture than the L’Oreal and blends more smoothly. It’s not white out of the tube, but it feels more like a BB Cream than the other products I tried that day.
See that cute makeup bag? It was a gift with purchase from Laura Geller. It had Spackle Primer, lip pops Lush Waterproof Lip Gloss in “Sunrise Rose” and Eye Rimz Baked Wet/Dry Eye Accents in “Supernatural Smoke” with a matching brush. Obviously, I needed more primer!
Since I had such bad luck with fragrance sample, I chose mystery samples this time. I got Butter London Scrubbers, Hempz Body Wash and Biolage Shampoo and Conditioner. Interesting…but I probably won’t try them until I travel…