Tag: Gift with Purchase

 
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Naked Reloaded

My sweet Sally sent me an Ulta giftcard for my birthday last month. At first, I wasn’t intentionally saving it – I almost used it on a haircut a few weeks ago – but I’m glad I did save it. The new Urban Decay Naked Reloaded Palette ($44) was released at Ulta on March 4th – I ordered it that day in order to get the gift with purchase.

Sure, I have the first six Naked palettes (OG, Naked 2, Naked 3, Naked Smoky, Naked Heat, Naked Cherry), plus a dozen other Urban Decay palettes – but I need THIS one, too. There are a few interesting tweaks to the Naked “formula” – first off, there’s no brush – I guess that’s why it’s $5 cheaper than the rest of the Naked palettes. They also changed up the pan sizes – the lighter base shades have large pans and the dark and glitter shades have smaller pans – brilliant! That’s exactly how it should be! I’ve used it three times so far, and other than having to decide which brushes to use, the experiences have been great. I haven’t used it with primer yet, because it doesn’t need it. The shades are neutral enough for any skin tone, although they seem to lean olive, strangely enough. It’s the perfect neutral starter for someone just getting into prestige brands of makeup. I’ll be reaching for this palette often.

The gift with purchase was an Urban Decay Makeup Bag, in signature black, white and lilac. The bag included a deluxe sample of Eyeshadow Primer Potion Anti-Aging and a full size 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil in “Perversion”. For some reason, I expected there to be a lipstick – nope. Free is free though.

For shits and giggles, I added two new Feeling Beautiful Freeman Masks ($4.29) to my cart: Deep Clearing Seaweed + Sea Salt Mud Mask + Scrub (I really liked the scent and how exfoliating this mask was) and Soothing Watermelon + Aloe Cooling Gel Mask (not especially cooling, but I did feel like it calmed my skin before my shower).

I also qualified for another freebie bag, which had a really strange assortment of products. The standout sample in the bag is the Smashbox Be Legendary Lipstick in (what I believe to be) “Crimson Chrome” – it’s not labelled, so I’m making an educated guess. I love the color and how it looks on me, but it gets on EVERYTHING – my poor hamburger ended up wearing most of it today. Also in the bag: Skyn Iceland Hydro Cool Firming Eye Gels; Jack Black Intense Therapy Lip Balm, Donna Karan Cashmere Mist Deodorant/Anti-Antiperspirant (why?); First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream; and Clarins Multi-Active Jour SPF 20. See what I mean? Odd.

$193 to Platinum…

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Chocolate Heart

Several weeks ago – actually, probably the end of January – I noticed that Makeup Revolution, err, now called Revolution Makeup was offering another Free Mystery Bag with a purchase over $40. Shipping to the US was free on orders over $60, so I splurged.

The first thing into my cart was the I Heart Revolution Chocolate Heart Set, which includes 4 products: the Red Velvet Eyeshadow Palette (reminds me of Blood Sugar), the Peanut Butter Cup Eyeshadow Palette, the Praline Chocolate Face Palette and the Chocolate Heart Highlighter. I also grabbed the new Galactic Chocolate Eyeshadow Palette – it’s full of marbled and shimmer shadows. I also picked up two of the new Eye Glistens – Foil and Glitter Liquid Eyeshadows in “It’s Fate” and “Desired”.

The shitty part? I only had a chance to use the Galactic Chocolate Palette twice – I was afflicted with a stye over the weekend and have been wearing NO eye makeup. It’s nearly healed though and I should be good to go in another day or so. The Galactic Chocolate Palette has very dark, shimmery colors – I wore it to work one day last week and caught sight of myself in the bathroom mirror – I looked like Mimi from The Drew Carey Show. Oh, and one of the pink shadows stained my eyelids for a day or so. I’ll have to be careful with this one – so pigmented!

OH! The Mystery Bag! I was less than impressed with this year’s mystery bag. There were just 4 products: Ultra Pro HD Powder Contour Palette, Strobe Lighting Highlighter Palette, Skin Kiss Super Intense Skin Loving Highlighter in “Ice Kiss” (again, reminds me of Jeffree’s “Ice Cold”); and a Sunlight Mood Lights Gradient Highlighter (the only product I’m likely to use). So, all highlighters and contouring shit – which I hardly ever use. Oh well, at least it wasn’t blackface foundation.

Shipping from the UK has really improved since my last order – it took less than two weeks to get here.

On the website, my order totaled $61 USD. I decided to process payment through Amazon Pay, instead of Paypal and I was delighted to learn that the World’s Biggest Retailer offers an amazing exchange rate – I was only charged ~$57. 10/10, would use again.

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Lock-it, New & Improved

I was a bit surprised when I saw that Kat Von D was releasing a “new & improved” version of her Lock-It Powder Foundation ($36). I had tried the old Lock-It Foundation a few years ago, but it didn’t work well for me – I picked the wrong shade, plus it seemed to oxidize quickly and just sit on my face. I crossed my fingers and ordered a lighter shade (120 – Fair Linen)…

The new Lock-It formula is now my holy grail powder foundation. I LOVE this formula. It buffs out to a matte finish and my pores almost disappear. It lasts ALL day. The compact is also supposed to be refillable, although I haven’t seen the refills for sale yet. It was well worth the $36…but I still have at least 4 powder foundations I need to use up – an It Cosmetics, a BareMinerals, a Sephora and a Laura Geller Baked. Argh.

I also used this order to pick out my Sephora Birthday Gift. There was a Kat Von D option, but it was foil-pack lipstick samples – um, no thanks. I picked the Drunk Elephant Gift, which includes Protini Polypeptide Cream and Beste No. 9 Jelly Cleanser.

I also used a promo code to get a vial of Kiehl’s Midnight Recovery Concentrate – it smells so good! Sephora is still only giving out two samples right now – I feel personally betrayed. For samples, I picked Bite Beauty Agave Lip Balm & Agave Sugar Lip Scrub and Benefit The POREfessional Matte Rescue (I’m excited to try this version of the product).

Just $906 until Rouge in 2020.

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First Ulta Haul of 2019

I follow enough drag queens on Instagram to know that Sugarpill is one of THE makeup brands to use – besides Jeffree Star and Anastasia Beverly Hills, of course. Ulta just started carrying their lipsticks, so I loaded a bunch in my cart and waited to see what else I needed. Originally, I had Sugarpill “Trinket” in my cart, but it sold out. I also had some other ones, but I decided to try just one and scope out the quality before buying more. I settled on “Pillow Fight” ($18), a dusty mauve with gold sparkle. It smells like a dreamsicle! The formula wasn’t super drying, but more drying than I’m used to. It lasts about as long as my other liquid lips…I’ve got a new brand to stan!

I also needed to stock up on face washes. Pacifica was BOGO 40% off, so I got Crystal Beam Foaming Crystal Face Scrub ($16) and Coconut Milk Cream to Foam Face Wash ($6, down from $10). I am VERY disappointed in the Crystal Beam – it is NOT a scrub. There is NO grit to the exfoliant – a total waste. Boo.

I also got two of my favorite eye brow pencil at BOGO 50% off – Ulta Ultra Slim Brow Pencil in “Dark Brown” (one at $10 and one at $5). Until I can afford microblading, I’ll keep buying these.

I got a 19 piece Beauty Bag with my $25 purchase. Inside the bag: Juice Beauty Phyto Pigments (and there’s actually a picture of the GOOPtress on the sample – ugh); L’Oreal Sublime Bronze Tinted Self-Tanning Lotion (nope); Benefit They’re Real Mascara (HUGE Deluxe Sample); Alterna Haircare Caviar Anti-aging Shampoo & Conditioner; Maybelline Great Lash Mascara; Ahava Mineral Mud Clearing Facial Treatment (yes!); Organic to Green Coco Oil; Caroline Herrera Good Girl; Botanics Shine Away Ionic Clay Mask (yasss); Mario Badescu Herbal Hydrating Serum; Marc Jacobs Daisy Dream; Living proof. T.B.D. multi-tasking styler; Clarins Extra-firming Nuit Night Cream; Chloe Chloe; Sexy Hair Love Oil; Boots No7 Early Defence Glow Activating Serum; Trilogy Rosehip Cream Cleanser; Philosophy Purity Made Simple Cleanser; Perricone MD H2 Elemental Energy; and PUR Get a Grip Endurance Eyeshadow Primer. Oh, and a $5 off Ulta Beauty Collection Coupon. This is the best sample bag in a bit!

Ulta is STILL not including samples with their orders. Jerks. I used a $3.50 off coupon on this order.

$399 to Platinum for 2020.

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Second Chance at Black Friday

 

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Last Friday, I was off work, out and about and I happened to notice an email for $2.95 Hand Soap Sale. So after Big Lots, I skipped on over to Bath & Body Works…

I filled a bag with 6 bottles…what? That is a damn empty bag, but I just filled up on soap a few weeks ago. I was hoping to use the coupons I forgot to bring to Candle Day the week before. [$8.95 3 wick candles – it was INSANE. There were bare shelves everywhere and I managed to get 2 of the last 3-4 “Twisted Peppermint” candles. I was lucky I didn’t get shanked in the parking lot.] Unfortunately, I couldn’t stack coupons with the soaps…but they would let me do two transactions…

I was about to give up and just leave with my soap, when I noticed that they had two racks of sexy black bags by the front door. They had a shitload of the VIP Black Friday Bags left! I verified with an employee – they were selling them for $35 each and I could use all my coupons. Not only did I get $10 off, but I got a free “Winter Candy Apple” Shower Gel for Lily and a free “White Citrus” Shower Gel for myself.

Inside the gorgeous fake leather VIP bag: a Fine Fragrance Mist in “Into the Stars” (it smells nice, but I wasn’t ready to start a new scent, so I gave it to Lily); a “Winter Candy Apple” 3 wick candle, a “Twisted Peppermint” Foaming Hand Soap, a Men’s Collection 2-in-1 Hair & Body Wash in “Ocean” (my husband shall enjoy it); “Vanilla Bean Noel” Shea Butter Hand Cream; “Champagne Toast” Antibacterial Hand Gel; and a “Lump of Coal” Charcoal Sheet Mask with Purifying Charcoal.

Just a few weeks more weeks until the Semi-Annual Sale! I better make room!

 

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Cyber Fundays 2018

 

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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!

 

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Sephora Play! Smarts – Complexion Your Way: Matte

 

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On the second weekend of Sephora’s ROUGE BONUS 20% off sale, they dropped new Sephora Play! Smarts boxes – Complexion Your Way ($20), with a choice between “Matte” and “Dewy”. Of course, I chose “Matte”.

The star of this box was the Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Matte Longwear Foundation + Primer. The sample card came with Primer and three shades of foundation. Amazingly, the lightest shade, “150”, was the near-perfect shade for me. There was just enough in the pack for a thin full face application (with a Beautyblender). It was BEAUTIFUL, especially topped with the Cover FX Perfect Setting Powder, also included in the box. This will definitely be the next foundation I buy.

Along with a nifty netted zipper bag, the “Matte” box had It Cosmetics Confidence in a Cleanser Skin-Transforming Hydrating Cleansing Serum (love this cleanser); Clinique Chubby Stick Sculpting Highlight; Smashbox Photo Finish Pore Minimizing Primer; Peter Thomas Roth Hungarian Thermal Water Mineral-Rich Moisturizer; and Sephora Collection Beauty Magnet Concealer Brush. I will use all of these, immediately.

I added another purchase to my order – the Ellis Brooklyn Bibliotheca Discovery Set ($20), a fragrance sampler that includes six of the brand’s set. Can you believe that the one I originally received was totally evaporated??? I was SO pissed. I called Sephora immediately and they sent me a new one, no questions asked. Luckily, it was fine…and I got two more samples. Oh yeah, did you hear that Sephora only gives two samples per order now? There will be riots in the street!

Back to the Ellis Brooklyn set…it was utterly disappointing. I really didn’t like any of the scents enough to buy a full size. I had especially high hopes for “Rrose” – I love a good rose, but it was bland. “Raven”, “Myth” and “Sci Fi” were the best of the bunch, but didn’t last long enough for me to get a feel for on me. “Rives” was straight up POISON that gave me a headache (probably the lavender). I wore “Fable” today and I cannot even remember what it smelled like. I am utterly disappointed in this set. I was hoping to find another high quality niche brand to love, like Atelier or Replica, but every formula was weak and was gone within 10 minutes. FAIL.

Oh samples! In the first shipment, I got foundations – Milk Blur Liquid Matte Foundation (3 shades on a card) and Giorgio Armani Face fabric Second Skin Makeup (4 shades foil packs). The second shipment gave me another sample of Ellis Brooklyn Myth and Dior Joy. Oh, joy.

Just $44 to Rouge!

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ROUGE BONUS

 

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Oh, Sephora…you really do spoil me. This past weekend and now this weekend, Sephora is offering 20% for Rouge Members. You know I took advantage the very first day of last week’s sale – I had to get that sample bag!

I really wanted to smell some Ellis Brooklyn scents, but they didn’t carry them at my local store. Boo. I had a hard time coming up with something I needed/wanted – until I noticed how many shades of lippies that Kat Von D is discontinuing. I was vaguely aware, but not fully – they are getting rid of about a third of their shades of Studded Kiss, Everlasting Lip Liquids, Everlasting Glimmer Veils, and Everlasting Lip Liners. I decided to grab an Everlasting Lip Liquid in “Underage Red” ($13) – you know, because the name pisses so many people off. I also got an Everlasting Lip Liner in “Misfit” ($11) – a darker maroon. I’ve gotta say, the two of these colors together is stunning. I’m very happy with my purchase.

So…that sample bag…so packed full! It included Laura Mercier Caviar Stick Eye Color (in little weird plastic pots); Urban Decay Cosmetics Naked Skin Ultra Definition Liquid Makeup (2 shades); NARS Power Matte Lip Pigment in “American Woman”; Tory Burch Eau de Parfum; Kiehl’s Creamy Eye Treatment; Sol de Janeiro Brazilian Bum Bum Cream; Kiehl’s Ginger Leaf & Hibiscus Firming Mask (excited to try this); and Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer.

Just $86 Until ROUGE for 2019. I will  do it!

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Naked Cherry

 

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Would you believe that this entire Ulta Haul cost me a mere $1.87? The magic of Ulta Platinum points, baby.

I really hadn’t been saving up points for very long – I used up most of my points just six month ago on a Beachwaver. Through strategic use of points promotions and my Ultimate Mastercard, I’d managed to accrue over $100 in points in a short period of time! By stacking a 20% off code, I was able to conserve precious points – I only used $70.50 in points this time.

I exhibited extraordinary willpower in not purchasing the Urban Decay Naked Cherry Palette ($49) at launch. I knew I had the points though, so I just bided my time until I got the code. I also splurged on matching Vice Lipstick in “Devilish” ($18). I’ve been using the palette for the past 3-4 days and it is the same buttery formula that I’ve grown to love through all the Naked palettes. There’s a variety of matte and shimmer shades that work very well together. I won’t be the first to point out that the palette seems a little bit like a rehash of the Backtalk palette – but so what? The Backtalk blushes work really well with this palette, so I call that a win. I heartily recommend the Naked Cherry palette, especially when it’s free.

I added a few other fun things to my order. I’d been wanting to try a bubble sheet mask, so I got an Ulta Revitalizing Bubbling Sheet Mask ($3.00) and since they were BOGO 40% off, I got an Ulta Age Defying Matcha Mud Mask ($1.80). Ulta also came out with Aromatherapy Fragrance Rollerballs ($12.50) – I got the “Uplift” Coconut Rose scent. I absolutely love the scent – it reminds me of the Renaissance Festival for some reason – but it doesn’t last very long at all. Kind of a bummer. I also got a Scunci No-Slip Octopus clip ($5.99) – this is hands down the best clip to hold your hair and not look like a lazy hot mess. I need like 5 more.

In addition to waiting until I got a 20% off code, I also waited until Beauty Break Wednesday. The Hempz Beauty Break included three full size products: Hempz Cinnamon Sugar & Vanilla Butter Creme Herbal Body Moisturizer, Hempz Star Jasmine & Vanilla Herbal Foaming Body Wash, Hempz Original Herbal Body Butter and a travel size Star Jasmine & Vanilla Herbal Moisturizer. Wow!

They didn’t give me any samples though…bummer.

Only $430 until Diamond status…

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Fire Dragon vs. Ice Dragon

 

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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!