Yes to Ulta
That Ulta, they keep getting me with their “gift with purchase” offers. My $60 purchase brought me a 10 piece “Patio Prep” Sampler. The sampler includes: My Amazing Replenish Hydrating Shampoo & Conditioner (This brand is new to me and I am excited to try it); L’Oreal Voluminous Primer/Base (I’ve gotten 3-4 samples of this and still have never tried it); Cover FX Mattifying Primer + Acne Treatment (Intrigued by this product – looking forward to trying this as well); Peach & Lily Glass Skin Refining Serum; Milani Bold Matte Lipstick in “I am Worthy” (I have not tried it yet, but it looks like my favorite shade, KvD “Lolita”); belif The True Cream Aqua Bomb (YES – I will never run out!); Hey Honey! 24Seven! Honey Day & Night Cream; and skyn Iceland The Antidote Cooling Daily Lotion. No lie – this is the best sample bag I’ve received in a good long while!
The way I’ve been shopping at Ulta lately, is filling my shopping cart with things I want, waiting for a good promo or deal. Yes to… products were BOGO Half, so I picked up a few items for my son: Yes to Tomatoes Triple Threat Acne Treatment Kit ($12.99 and includes a sulfur solution like Kate Somerville – I might have to switch myself) and Yes to Tomatoes Detoxifying Charcoal Cleanser ($5, down from $9.99). He acted offended, but I’ve noticed a real improvement in his complexion since he’s started using them.
I added to my conditioner hoard with John Frieda Wonder Drops – Frizz Smoothing Wonder Mask ($1.47 each and also BOGO Half). I got two and used one so far. It felt like a normal conditioner to me – nothing special. The packettes are smaller than I’m used to – only one application. I also ordered a Diane Hanging Shower Comb ($3.50) to evenly distribute my conditioning packs.
I liked the ColourPop Ultra Blotted Lip in my last order, so I ordered another one – “Cherry on Top”, a blackened cherry ($7).
EVERYWHERE is selling face masks now. I bought a pack of 3 from Kitsch for $12.99. They are good quality and breathable, so I’ll definitely buy more now that Texas has a Face Mask Order across the whole state.
I found a few 75% off clearance goodies: Ulta Transforming Clay Cleanser ($3.12, down from $12.50 ), which is supposed to change colors after 30 seconds, but changes color immediately – so weird. Also, Beauty by Popsugar Liquid Velvet Lip in “Be Racy” ($6, down from $24), which was way pinker than I expected and kind of tacky, as in made my lips stick together.
The last few things I threw in my cart were random – a Rebels Refinery Skull Lip Balm in “Mint”, because it reminded me of a lighter that I used to have, and a back-up Zoya Remove+ ($10). Oh, and don’t forget about that $3.50 off coupon!
After this purchase, I’m 40% to Diamond in 2021 ($719 to go)…but I have $61 in points. The new Urban Decay Naked Ultraviolet Palette drops in a few days and I’ve got my eye on it…
Back to Back Ulta Hauls
I know I just ordered, but June 1st was Diamond Day, with a whole load of Diamond Exclusive Offers…
I shopped so long that I missed a Special Diamond Gift Bag and Nail Purchase Bag – they were both sold out by the time I placed my order – well, shit. I did still get the Makeup Revolution “Fierce Mind” Eyeshadow Palette for free with $25 makeup purchase. It’s got 4 huge pans of neutral shimmer shades that can easily be used as blush, too. The makeup I picked to get it was a mix of new products. I wanted to try Colourpop Ultra Blotted Liquid Lip ($7) in “Cypress Chill”, a bricky red. It is a matte liquid lipstick, but with a muted finish – it does appear to be blotted down and soft focus. I want more shades! I also tried the new NYX Dip Shape Go Longwear Brow Pomade in “Dark Brown” (usually $11, but all NYX was 40% off, so it was $6.60). This is similar to Julep’s Don’t Leave Your Brows at Home, but in a pomade form. If I’m gonna use a pomade, I’d prefer this all in one form, instead of the brush and pot being separate. That being said, this product did give me fuller brows, but I did have to finish them off with a slim pencil for definition. This product is not one and done.
Coincidentally, I did buy a back-up of my favorite brow pencil – the Ulta Ultra Slim Brow Pencil in “Dark Brown” ($10) – it counted as makeup towards the free eyeshadow AND towards an Ulta 4 piece gift, with $19.50 purchase. The gift contained a HUGE clear tote bag, a small palm tree patterned makeup bag, Ulta Watermelon Makeup Remover Facial Towelettes, and Ulta Watermelon Waves Juicy Gloss. Oh, the other purchase was Ulta Brush Cleaning Solid Soap ($10). I am devastated that Ulta no longer carries the Japonesque Solid Soap, but I’m holding in my tears and trying another brand.
I went all in on stocking up on skincare to get ANOTHER Skincare gift with purchase. My son has been breaking out lately, so I got him Garnier SkinActive Clean+ Blackhead Eliminating Scrub ($8.49) and Biore T-Zone Targeted Deep Cleansing Pore Strips ($9.99). I was all excited when I showed him, but he said he felt personally attacked. Rude!
For myself, I got Sagely Naturals Relief & Recovery CBD Cream ($9, but I swear it was $28 when I looked at it a few weeks ago). I’d gotten this sample a few times, and although CBD seems to be a bullshit ingredient, the tingly menthol in this moisturizer is not bullshit – it feels AMAZING on my face. I also got Freeman CBD Balance Jelly Mask + Scrub ($9.99) and Dr. Organic Rose Restoring Face Scrub ($15.99). Both are bit more pricey than I usually get, but I am a sucker for scrubs and roses.
The “Be Your Own Sunshine” Sample Bag includes Ulta Beauty Makeup Remover Facial Towelettes, Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water All-in-1 Waterproof; Clinique Pep-Start Eye Cream (more eye cream!); proactivMD Deep Cleansing Face Wash; it Cosmetics Confidence in a Cream; Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate; Peach & Lily Glass Skin Refining Serum; and Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel. That’s a lot of skincare!
The only coupon available was $3.50 off – but hey, better than nothing. I’m now $784 to Diamond Status and I have accrued $50 in points!
Ulta Breakout & Chill
I’d been saving The Sign Tribe’s Remove and Chill Nail Enamel Remover ($14.99, $11.99 after 20% off coupon) in my cart for a quite a while, waiting for a good gift with purchase or coupon. I had both, so I ordered!
This product is a game change for anyone who cannot stand the smell of nail polish remover. It’s a cream that you put on your fingernails that melts off the nail polish remover. There’s no chemical scent, it’s just like a super moisturizing cuticle cream. I’ll be honest, it takes a loooong time to dissolve the polish, and it takes a double application because of the thick top coat that I use. I’ve used it twice (on Sinful Colors “I Ain’t Jambalayan” and Sally Hansen “Berry Blue”) and it’s removed all the polish both times, but neither of those are glitters, so I’ll reserve my full judgement until I try it on a glitter and on my toenails. It’s also quite expensive, even compared to my $10 Zoya Remove+.
The other part of my purchase was the Kate Somerville Breakout Fighters Kit ($55). This kit is kind of bullshit, but it’s my own damn fault, because I should’ve checked the sizes it contained. The main reason I bought it was for the 1 oz EradiKate Acne Treatment ($26 alone), because I was close to running out. This smelly sulfur elixir is the only thing that tames the acne on my chest. The kit also contains a 1 oz EradiKate Daily Cleanser Foaming Cleanser Acne Treatment – but I thought it was the 4 oz size, which is normally $38. That means the 1 oz is worth $9.50. The kit also contains EradiKate Salicylic Acid Treatment (0.33 oz) – the full 1 oz size is $58, so I guess this tiny sample is supposed to be worth $19.33. The Kate Somerville Oil Free Moisturizer (which is very, very nice on my face) is $65 for 1.7 oz, so that makes the .5 oz size about $19.12. I still don’t feel like I got that great of a deal, even if it is all worth $73.95 together…boo.
The Skinfatuation gift with purchase was also disappointing – but AGAIN, my own damn fault. I didn’t realize that it was exclusively eye creams, which I barely use and have a shit ton of. The gift includes Skyn Iceland Hydro Cool Firming Eye Gels; it Cosmetics Confidence in an Eye Cream (I love the moisturizer, so I bet this one is good, too); StriVectin Intensive Eye Concentrate for Wrinkles; Dr. Brandt Needles No More No More Baggage Eye De-Puffing Gel; La Roche-Posay Toleriance Ultra Eyes Soothing Repair Moisturizer; and CeraVe Eye Repair Cream.
$874 to go until Diamond in 2021.
I found something new to hoard! I am so excited!
Even though I have two full sets of shampoo & conditioner in my shower (Head & Shoulders Smooth & Silky and Herbal Essences White Grapefruit & Mosa Mint), I discovered Love Beauty & Planet Indian Lilac and Clove Leaf Positively Shine Shampoo & Conditioner ($6.99 each). I had to order them and immediately try them. I didn’t know how much I love lilac. I was hoping for more of a clove scent, so I could reminisce about smoking cloves in a Denny’s and coughing up blood, but all I smell is lilac.
So, what’s up with the lonely bottle of Love Beauty & Planet Murumuru Butter & Rose Blooming Color Conditioner? That’s what I received in my original order, instead of the Indian Lilac. I put in a ticket and Target sent me the correct conditioner AND let me keep this one. Shit, now I have to buy a matching shampoo…
I also decided to get a bunch of deep conditioning packs. I only ordered one HASK Keratin Protein Pack ($1.79), but they sent me 2 – another score! I tried one today and my hair is strong enough to pull a car! Probably, I didn’t test it.
I also ordered an OGX Coconut Miracle Oil Hair Mask ($3.99), SheaMoisture Jamaican Castor Oil Strengthen & Restore Treatment Masque ($2.99), SheaMoisture Raw Shea Butter Moisture Recovery Treatment Masque ($2.99), and SheaMoisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Intensive Hydration Masque ($2.99). Even with my super-long, needing-a-haircut-bad hair, I can get two uses out of each packet, so if I use two packets a month, my hair should be in REALLY good condition in 6 months or so…
I used the $3 off coupon from my April Beauty Boxes. I also bought enough Beauty products to get a $5 Target Gift Card to use later (I used it the other day to order Contact Solution and Love Home & Planet Laundry Detergent).
Target Beauty Boxes – May 2020
For the fifth month in a row, Target’s given us TWO Beauty Boxes to choose from…but why choose just one, when you can have them both?
Even though I don’t plan on going outside much this summer, I grabbed the “Sunscreen Queen” box. I did happen to visit Lala’s pool this weekend and got to try out two of the sunscreens! The first day, I used CeraVe Ultra-Light Moisturizing Face Lotion with Sunscreen – SPF 30. It did well in the pool, although I must admit that I just lounged and didn’t go completely underwater. The second day, I opted for a bit stronger protection with Australian Gold Botanical Sunscreen – SPF 50 Mineral Lotion. It protected my face well – I should’ve put it on my shoulders! Also in this box: Sun Bum Original Sunscreen Spry – SPF 30; Bare Republic Mineral Shimmer Holographic Shimmer Stick (weird – I am paranoid to try these); La Roche Posay Anthelios Melt-in Sunscreen Milk – SPF 60 (you got my attention with SPF 60…but the milk part is scaring me away); and RoC Multi Correxion 5-in-1 Anti-Aging Face Moisturizer – SPF 30. I’m ready for the 3 or 4 times I have to go outside this summer!
The “Summer Hair & Skin Care” box has a wider range of products. I’ve already used the HASK Argan Oil Repairing Deep Conditioner Packet – it was great for my hair, but didn’t smell as nice as the Unwined line. Also in this box: CeraVe Hydrating Mineral Sunscreen Lotion for Face – SPF 50; Heritage Store Rosewater Spray (the bottle says to spray on face, hair, body…okay!); Biore Charcoal Deep Cleansing Pore Strips; COLAB Original Dry Shampoo; Not Your Mother’s Beach Babe Soft Waves Sea Salt Spray with Tropical Banana Fragrance (do I want my hair to smell like banana?); and Eva NYC Mane Magic 10-in-1 Primer.
Each box was $7, with free shipping, plus 5% off with my Target Red Card. Both boxes came with $3 off $15 coupons, and the coupons have an extended expiration date of 9/4/20. I used one of last month’s coupons to get these boxes, and I used the other one to hoard shampoo and conditioner (post coming soon).
Mother’s Day in the Bag
The Mother’s Day Tote Bag from Bath & Body Works is kind of a big deal. I don’t get it every single year – the products aren’t always exciting – but this year’s products are just what I wanted.
I have been excited about “Perfect Peony” since it launched a few months ago…I’ve been biding my time for an opportunity to try it. This bag included “Perfect Peony” Fine Fragrance Mist, Shower Gel and 24 Hour Moisture Lotion. I would have preferred Body Cream, but I’ll cope. I really like the scent. Obviously, it’s very similar to the original “Peony” scent (of which I still have several bottles stashed), but it’s different enough that I can tell them apart. There’s an underlying herbal scent to “Perfect Peony” – it reminds me of the old “Flowering Herbs” scent from the 90s. I like it and hope it sticks around.
Also inside the Mother’s Day bag: “Cactus Blossom” 3 Wick Candle, “Cactus Blossom” Foaming Hand Soap; a “Strawberry Pound Cake” Jar Candle, “Strawberry Pound Cake” Hand Cream and “Strawberry Pound Cake” HAND SANITIZER. WOO HOO! As much as I love “Perfect Peony”, I am obsessed with “Strawberry Pound Cake” – that will be my next acquisition, I guarantee it.
The bag itself is a bit disappointing. I was expecting a heavier bag, but it’s made out of the stuff that reusable grocery bags are made of. Hmmm, I guess I can use it Aldi?
I spent WAY too much on Hand Soaps to get the bag for $30 with a $30 purchase. 6/$26 is HIGHWAY ROBBERY! But I’ve been quarantining for over two months and I’ve been washing my hands A LOT. I got 7 soaps and by far, the big winner was the “Blueberry Lemonade” Foaming Hand Soap. I need more of that scent in my life.
So what’s the word on the street for Semi Annual Sale? Shouldn’t that be starting soon?
Give Me Some Balm
Oh hey, so here’s my order from Sephora’s Spring VIB Sale. It took over two weeks to get here, which is understandable…but work has been literally INSANE the past week, so I haven’t been posting…
Sephora hasn’t been wowing me lately, but I did find a few things that sparked my interest. I’d been eyeing the new Sephora Favorites “Give Me Some Balm” Kit ($29), because almost every day, I’ve been wearing nothing but lip balm. The star of the set is the FULL SIZE Pat McGrath Labs Lip Fetish Balm in “Clear” – hands down, this is the prettiest tube I own! I’m also pumped about the Fresh Sugar Advanced Therapy Lip Treatment in “Clear” – it’s minty. Even though I hate applying lip balm with my finger, the peachy scent of the Too Faced Cosmetics Peach Mega Moisture Lip Balm has me keeping it by my bedside. Also included in the kit – FULL SIZE tarte SEA Quench Lip Rescue in “rose” and Jouer Cosmetics Essential Lip Enhancer Conditioning Lip Treatment. All my fellow work-from-homers must have picked up this kit, too – it’s no longer available!
I also snagged another Cocofloss in “Fresh Coconut” ($9) – I LOOOOOVE this dental floss.
Do I really need red eyeliner? No, but it was on clearance for $10, so I picked up a Kat Von D, um, I mean KVD Vegan Beauty Ink Well Long Wear Eye Liner in “Outlaw”. I haven’t tried it yet, maybe I’ll leave the house by Halloween?
For samples, I got Chanel Coco Mademoiselle and a sample card of Shiseido VisionAiry Gel Lipstick (meh). I never would’ve picked the lipstick, but I did pick the perfume. Why does it smell like a Mens’ scent?
On a side note, Sephora Play! is no more! April was to be the final box, but changing my expiration date didn’t take in my account and I missed out on the very last box. (It probably would’ve been a bunch of leftover samples, anyway). Thanks for nothing, COVID-19.
Without Sephora Play!, will I be able to spend $208 more to get VIB status for 2021?
Target Beauty Boxes – April 2020
Thank you Target, for giving me two Target Beauty Boxes for April. My online shopping is ridiculous right now…
The box on the left is called “Clean Routine” and is filled with health-conscious alternatives to every day products. I tried out the Lavanila Pure Healthy Vanilla Deodorant today. It’s not as good as the Schmidt’s deodorant, but it kept most of the funk away. (I totally just sniffed my armpit – a little funky, but not bad.) Also included in the “Clean Routine” box: artnaturals Vitamin C Serum (I’ve been using a lot of serums in my morning routine since Quarantine started); hello bpa-free toothbrush (I’ll throw it in the bin for guests); Love Beauty and Planet Coconut Milk & White Jasmine Hand Cream (I have the one I received in the April 2019 box in my purse); and hello Hemp Seed Oil + Coconut Oil Fluoride Free Toothpaste (I’ve been using this for the past few days – it’s like brushing your teeth with oregano).
The other box is themed “Spring Into Clean” and is full of healthy cleaning products. I am LOVING the full sized SheaMoisture Cannabis & Witch Hazel Skin Rescue Cream Cleanser. It takes a lot of rinsing, but I like the way it feels and smells. Also inside: Pacifica Glowing Makeup Removing Wipes; The Good Stuff Complete Repair Balm (another repeat from April 2019); Acure Resurfacing Overnight Glycolic Treatment; and Spring & Vine Tea Tree & Mint Scalp Soothing Shampoo Bar (I gave to the husband, but he hasn’t used it yet.
Each box was $7, with free shipping, plus 5% off with my Target Red Card. Both boxes came with $3 off $15 coupons, and THESE coupons have an extended expiration date of 8/6/20. I was able to use BOTH of last month’s coupons already! I even used one of them to order these two boxes, adding some body wash for my daughter to the order to bump the total over $15.
I know it’s super cliched…but this palette is SO PIGMENTED.
This PIGMENTED palette is the Sugarpill C2 Orange Capsule ($42), an Ulta exclusive. This is my first experience with Sugarpill shadows, and I am very impressed. No primer needed with these shadows – they spread on the lid like butter. I was drawn to this palette for one particular shade – that bright turquoise shimmer – “Skyrise”. Even though I loved they way it looked on me, my husband said I look like Mimi from The Drew Carey Show. He doesn’t understand FASHION. Now I want the Pink Capsule Palette!
I also tried out a new brow pencil – Colourpop Brow Boss in “Dark Brown” ($6). It’s a great price, but still not as good my Ulta Holy Grail for a few dollars more. It doesn’t blend as well and fades throughout the day. It’s fine for work, though.
Black Moon Lippies are 30% off ($12.60, down from $18) – I wonder if this means they are dropping the brand? Anyway, I picked up “Warrior”, a Breast Cancer Awareness nude matte.
Oh, and I got a Women Founded Beauty Sample Bag, with it Cosmetics Mini Blurring Foundation Brush; Laura Mercier Pure Canvas Primer, Sweet Spot Labs Vanilla Blossom Gentle Wash (it says “gynecologist recommended”, so I guess it is for my vajayjay?); Benefit The POREfessional, Elemis Pro-Collagen Marine Cream (I’ve tried this before and really like the smell); Sunday Riley A+ High Dose Retinoid Serum; Pattern Heavy Conditioner for Coilies (will be gifted to a curly-headed friend); Sagely Naturals CBD Cream (I tried a previous sample of this while in Vegas, and it TINGLED so bad – I loved it); DefineMe Sofia Isabel Fragrance (an orangey vanilla rollerball); and Drybar Jump Start Quick Dry Blowout Serum.
I was able to use a $3.50 off coupon, leaving me with $1,007 more to get to Diamond again.
Ulta has a weird purchase requirement for their Spring GWPs – $19.50. Challenge accepted.
Why yes, I do buy a brow pencil with every Ulta order. This time, it was my Holy Grail – Ulta Ultra Slim Brow Pencil in “Dark Brown” ($10). I also got Ulta Juice Infused Lip Oil in “Tangerine” ($9) – this is my absolute favorite way to remove longwear lipstick. No scrubbing, no harsh chemicals – it just melts away. I also got another 4-way Buffing Block ($4) – I go through those like toilet paper.
But that’s $23…until I added a $3.50 off coupon. BOOM.
This Spring’s Gift with Purchase is fantastic. The large white and coral bag includes: BLOOM Eyeshadow Palette (this palette is FANTASTIC – it’s floral shimmers are perfect for everyday wear); BLUSH Cheek Palette (the blush is a dupe for NARS “Orgasm”); Luxe Lipstick in “Nudely Interupt”; Pre-Moistened Makeup Remover Facial Towelettes; Poreless Face Primer; Jelly Gloss Lip Gel; Matte Eye Primer in “Nude”; Maximum Lashes Mascara in “Black” (I really like this mascara – Ulta is on their game); and a Powder Brush. What a great bag!
This is a super small order, but they were having free shipping for everyone that day!
$1,068 to Diamond status!