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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…
September 2018 Ipsy Bag – Who is Going to Stop Me.
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I immediately squealed when I saw this month’s ipsy bag (I had let Lily open the mailer and take it out for me). It matches the Betsey Johnson black kitty wallet that I just ordered from Poshmark, just the day before. Don’t even get me started on my new Poshmark obsession – I’ve made $190 over the last 2 weeks. (Sign up with the code KNOBBYGIRL and we’ll each get a $5 credit!)
And then I squealed AGAIN when I saw the Luxie Beauty Harley Quinn Flat Definer 110 Makeup Brush – it’s gorgeous! I have loved every single Luxie brush that I’ve gotten via ipsy – great quality!
Also in this month’s box: Luna by Luna Cosmetics Translucent Powder (NOT to be confused with Manny MUA’s Lunar Beauty, which is SO canceled; looks like it has a hint of shimmer?); Hempz Moisture Herbal Whipped Body Cream (I smelled it, but I cannot place the scent – not marijuana, not mint, maybe a hint of lysol – but not in a bad way); Lord & Berry Line/Shade Pencil in “Flash Purple”; and Eva NYC Satin Dream Leave-in Cream.
A great bag this month!
If you’d like to try Ipsy – click here. I’ll earn 250 points if you sign up through my link.
The Mother of All Sample Bags
Ulta might be stingy when it comes with its regular samples, but they are more than generous when it comes to their gift with purchase sample bags. To kick off the Memorial Day weekend, Ulta offered the Mother of All Sample Bags with a $65 purchase…but first, my purchases.
When I get the emails with a sample bag or gift with purchase, I’ll check the sales and fill up my bag. Sometimes I’ll complete the transaction, but oftentimes I don’t. I’ll usually just leave stuff in my bag for next time. Unfortunately, my bag was empty, so I had to start this shopping trip from scratch. I started by checking the Ulta Sale page. I noticed that Edge/Skintimate Shave Gel was BOGO 50% off. Unfortunately, they were out of Edge, so my husband will get to shave his head with Skintimate. Then I noticed that L’Oreal Colorista Semi-Permanent for Brunette Hair was $8.99, down from $10.99. Since it doesn’t work all that well, I figured it would be perfect to use on the kids. I got 3 – Teal, Midnight Blue and Maroon. I also found Ofra Limited Edition Metallic Long Lasting Liquid Lipstick in “Fantasia” (it reflects in blue, red and purple – it’s almost holographic) for $10.20, down from $17.
Another deal I was able to take advantage of was a Makeup Revolution Mystery Bag Offer with $25 purchase. This one was hard to do, since Sally just sent me ALL the newest palettes. I decided on the SophX Ultra 24 Eyeshadow Palette, $15 and the Pro HD Brighter Than My Future Palette, $20, but $16 after my 20% off any one item coupon. I had never heard of @SophieDoesNails until this palette, but apparently, she’s a famous Influencer in the UK. I tried out the eye shadows today (without primer) and they do seem to be slightly higher quality than the normal eyeshadows. They blended seamlessly and lasted decently well. Most of the colors are shimmery and I’m not sure what I’m going to do with all the dark greens, but looking forward to playing with it. It may – or may not – be a dupe for the Morphe Jaclyn Hill Palette. It looks somewhat similar, but infinitely more wearable. The Pro HD palette is a blush/highlighter palette. The shimmers are INTENSE. I tried one of the striped ones and had to pat half of it off – I looked like an alien. Good stuff, man. Inside the Mystery Bag: the Unicorns Unite Salvation Palette (I actually don’t have this one!), The One Sculpt Contour Stick, Ultra Strobe Stick in “Peach Lightening”, and Salvation Velvet Lip Lacquer in “The One for All”. Not bad.
And now. what was in the 29 piece Mother of All Sample Bags? In no particular order: tarte Shape Tape Contour Concealer (4 shades); DevaCurl Melt into Moisture Matcha Butter Conditioning Mask; Urban Decay Troublemaker Mascara; Sexy Hair Sexy Suds Shampoo & Conditioner; Ulta Beauty Poreless Face Primer (nice); Benefit Roller Lash (one of my fave mascaras); Hempz Herbal Healthy Hair Herbal Fortifying Shampoo; First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads; Shiseido Ultimate Sun Protection Lotion SPF 50; Sexy Hair Love Oil; Prada Candy; Maybelline Great Lash (that iconic pink and green tube); Peter Thomas Roth Water Drench Cloud Cream Cleanser; NYX Worth the Hype Volume & Lengthening Mascara; Eyeko London eye do liquid eye liner in “carbon black”; Woman by Ralph Lauren; dermalogica Sound Sleep Cocoon Transformative Night Gel-Cream; Julep Love Your Bare Face Cleansing Oil; living proof. No Frizz Nourishing Style Cream; Mario Badescu Aloe Vera Toner (this opened inside the bag and got everything a bit MOIST); Lime Crime Unicorn Hair in “Bunny” (there’s no way this peachy shade would ever work in my hair – or anyone’s hair for that matter); philosophy Purity Made Simple Moisturizer; Mamonde Pore Clean Clay Mask; Anastasia Beverly Hills Lip Gloss in “St. Tropez”; Lime Crime Diamond Crushers in “Lit” (even though I think Lime Crime is a shit brand, I’m looking forward to trying this one out); Kenra Platinum Luxe One Leave-In All-in-One Miracle Spray; COOLA Dawn Patrol Classic Primer; Garnier Skin Active Micellular Foaming Gel Cleanser; and Becca Ultimate Coverage 24-Hour Foundation (3 foil swatches). That’s a lot of stuff, right? That’s at least $50-60 worth of samples! AND it came in a huge, high quality woven canvas makeup bag. Oh, and did I forget the $5 off $15 Ulta Collection coupon?
I also forgot my regular samples – Redken All Soft Shampoo & Conditioner and HASK Biotin Boost Thickening Shampoo & Conditioner. I checked my Ultimate Rewards Balance and I just need ~$50 more to hit Platinum. There’s a slight possibility that I could make Diamond if I get a few haircuts…
April 2018 Ipsy Bag – Social Butterfly
LOOK at this month’s ipsy bag – rose gold butterflies! I’m dead.
The Pretty Woman Nail Polish in “Girl Boss” was the first product that caught my eye – it’s a dusty rose that matches the bag. Also in this month’s bag: Firma Beauty Angled Blender Brush; Ciate London Starstruck Double-Ended Stamp Liquid Liner (well, if I want to look like Kat Von D); Bubble T Cosmetics Lemongrass & Green Tea Stimulating Hand Cream; and Hempz Herbal Lip Balm (tee hee – hemp).
A solid bag, if a bit on the hippy side.
If you’d like to try Ipsy – click here. I’ll earn 250 points if you sign up through my link.
I have a love/hate relationship with my hair. I’m always looking for the next product/styling aid that will give me perfect hair…I try something new, get excited…then back comes the ponytail.
That being said, my current Revlon curling iron is probably older than my son (13!) and didn’t get very hot last time I tried to use it. I’ve been drooling over the Beachwaver Curling Iron, but at $129 – that’s a steep price for a curling iron! How can I rationalize spending that much money on a styler I’ll use just a few times a year? Well…I found a way.
First, you save up your Ulta Platinum Points for nearly 2 years – the last time I used my points was on the Alice Through the Looking Glass Palette! I had saved $67.50 in points. Then, wait for a 20% off coupon. Last week, the stars aligned and I snagged the Beachwaver S1 Curling Iron for just $35.70. Woo! I tried it out and it’s just as amazing as videos make it look. You literally just grab your hair and press the button and BAM – perfect waves. I haven’t done my whole head yet…but coming soon!
I also found a promo for a free 18 piece Beauty Bag with $30 purchase on RetailMeNot – check out the amazing contents: NYX Jumbo Eye Pencil in “Milk” (already have one, but sure); Smashbox Photo Finish Primerizer (have some, but I like it); Bosley Professional Strength Ultra Boost Styling Creme (Bosley, like the hair plug people?); Clairol Hair Food Moisture Shampoo & Conditioner Infused with Honey Apricot Fragrance (Mmmmm); Jimmy Choo L’eau; First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance Pads (huh?); Hempz Original Herbal Shampoo for Damaged and Color Treated Hair; Yves Saint Laurent Black Opium; Philosophy Amazing Grace; Living proof. restore mask treatment; goodol Wash Up Deep Clean Pore Glacial Clay; Nyakio Maracuja & Yangu Soothing Oil; Perricone MD Cold Plasma Face Serum; Rituals Hand Balm in “Indian Rose & Sweet Almond Oil”; Philosophy Purity Made Simple (love this stuff for when I travel); Hey Honey Good Morning Honey Silk Facial Serum; Estee Lauder The Smoother Universal Perfecting Primer; Organic to Green Coco Oil; and a $5 off $15 Ulta Collection coupon! I have finger cramps now!
My usual samples were also good – NARS Powermatte Lip Pigment in “American Woman” and HASK Biotin Boost Shampoo & Conditioner.
I don’t plan on hitting the beach this summer, but my hair will be ready just in case!
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…