Wednesday, May 8, 2013

First Order - First Drug Store Make-up?! Also Some Random Extras

Hello! Still getting caught up with all these "intended posts". This post is going to be about my very first order from, as well as my (sort of ) very first drug store make-up!

I suppose I should start by explaining the "first drug store make-up" thing. Before I made this purchase, I did not own any make-up from a drug store. I buy things like lip balms and sunscreens from drug stores/supermarkets (I haven't actually bought anything from a typical drug store like Walgreens or CVS, all my "drug store" sundries come from Target), but I didn't own any actual make-up. In fact, the only make-up I have ever purchased from a drug store was one of those "true match" concealers (the kind that supposedly match a whole range of skin tones perfectly and come in about three different shades) when I was in high school to use under my eyes (I have the worst under eye circles, ever. I basically lost the genetic lottery when it came to those suckers.) and that's it. I didn't really get into make-up until very recently, maybe within the past three years or so, with my very first purchase, besides that concealer (and remember, this doesn't count lip balms and things like that), being benefit's "Hello Flawless!" powder compact in the color "Petal" (this was before they expanded the color line and that was the lightest shade available) from Sephora. The color was off, but I was in love with the idea of "fancy" make-up and just kept buying it. I have nothing against drug store make-up nor the people who chose to purchase and wear it; it's just for me, personally, I'd much rather spend a little more and get a product that I perceive to be higher quality (not that that is always the case, though).
However, since I've really started getting into the Youtube beauty community, I've seen some pretty amazing products that are very comparable to higher-end brands. One product in particular is Nyx's Jumbo Eye Pencil in Milk. It seems like so matter how much make-up someone has, and regardless of whether they buy more high end or drug store, everyone and their mom owns Nyx's Jumbo Eye Pencil in Milk. I've always wanted to try it, but it's always either sold out at my Ulta or it has been used already (which I'll touch on later).

A few weeks ago, Ulta was having a sale where all their Nyx products were 40% off. I figured now was a great time to finally purchase a Jumbo Eye Pencil in milk, and maybe try a few other products from Nyx. I went to my local Ulta to check out the line, only to discover that everyone else had the same idea I did; they were sold out of almost everything, and what they did have in stock looked like it had been used and put back on the shelf. One thing I noticed about Nyx that kind of bothered me is that a lot of their products are sold unsealed, which I find to be kind of gross. I know a lot of times, higher end products are sold unsealed, but they're also normally in boxes or are in a boutique setting like at a Macy's where there are shopgirls guarding the merchandise and testers laid out beautifully and within easy reach. In a drug store type setting like Ulta, there normally no testers out, nor are there people paying attention to the products all the time (or ever, really. I've seen a few associates milling around in the high end section, but I've never seen one assigned to the drug store side). This makes is super easy for someone to just pick a random lipgloss or eye pencil, swipe it on the back of their hand (or even right their eyes/lips; I used to work in a retail store with a beauty section, and I've seen people pick up products from the displays, try them out, and just put them back. I think the thing that always baffled me the most were the people who tried the lipgloss testers right on their mouths without using a disposable applicator. We tried to maintain a clean testing environment, so we had tons of disposable eye shadow, lip gloss, and mascara applicators out. We even cut the wands off the mascara and lipgloss testers to discourage people from trying them without applicators. There would still be people who tried to scrape the ragged, cut lipgloss wand across their lips and we'd have to gently ask them to use the applicators we provide...). There were a couple products still in stock that I was interested in experimenting with (at 40% off, you can't really go wrong) but every time I'd pick something out, it looked like it was already used.

Sad that I may never be able to get my hands on a Nyx Jumbo Eye Pencil in milk, I went home. I went on Ulta's website to see if they had the sale on there as well, and they did! They seemed to have the products I was interested in in stock, though the only downside was that I would have to pay shipping (I couldn't see myself spending over $50; I buy pretty much all of my make-up from Sephora, though I do buy my hair conditioner from Ulta since Sephora stopped carrying it for some reason...). I had one of those "$3.50 off a purchase of $10 or more" coupons, so I figured I could count that towards shipping (which would make it around $3, which isn't so bad). My purchase ended up being smaller than I had expected, however, since there was a weird glitch that kept happening when I tried to check-out. When I tried to use my coupon, I could get all the way through the ordering process up to where I picked what shipping I wanted. When my cart was worth more than a certain value, it was unable to process my shipping when I used my coupon. I had to choose between getting more products or using my coupon; I went with less products.
Shipping was pretty standard, and my package came in about five days. The box was a lot bigger than I had expected; I ended up only buying five products, but the box was bigger than a lot of my Sephora boxes (which I already think are way too big).
Here you can see all the extra space, as well as how things were packed. My products were in one bag and my samples were in another. You get three samples with your online orders the same you get three samples when you order from Sephora, however, you don't get to pick your samples. You pick between three categories (fragrance, skin care, and variety) and then get a set of samples within that category. I picked variety since I already have waaaaay too many fragrance samples and skin care sounded boring.
Here's everything laid out; my bag of samples, my bag of products, a little promo book for Calvin Klein's cosmetics line (they have a product where they list the SPF as "8". If your make-up product only has an SPF of 8, I don't really think it's worth mentioning since it's providing basically no sun protection...), and an Ulta catalog. The catalog is a lot thicker than the ones I normally get in the mail, but that might have been because it's the "Mother's Day gifts" themed one.
 These were the three samples I got in my "variety" pack. I'm very happy with these samples, and I really like how they gave a variety of both high-end products and drugstore products. Even though the Crest Whitestrips isn't technically a beauty sample, I still thought it was really neat to include, especially since it also contained coupons!
I'm sure you all know what a Nyx Jumbo Eye Pencil in milk looks like, but here's a picture anyways. I got two of these because I'm pretty sure I'll never be able to get these at my actual store, and I wanted to take advantage of the 40%. I have used this already, and I can see why people love them so much. They do make a big difference when used as a base for bright eyeshadows. I also like to use mine on my waterline to make my eyes look brighter; I do have a fleshtoned pencil for this very purpose, but it doesn't give the same "pop" as the white does. I know that white can look kind of harsh and fake, but sometimes you want that kind of drama, and I don't think it looks too over done, as long as you stay on the waterline and don't go outside of it (believe me, I've seen people do this and it almost never looks good). I think this product is totally worth buying, even at normal price.
I also threw in another Jumbo Eye Pencil, this one in the color Strawberry Milk. This was more on impulse than anything else; I just thought the color was cute sounding/looking.
This was another product I had heard about on Youtube; Nyx's Soft Matte Lip Cream in the color Tokyo. This is another one of those unsealed kinds of products that I could never purchase in store. There's absolutely no way to know if someone used it or not and I don't think I would ever feel comfortable using one I purchased in store. I know there's nothing that says buying online makes things any less susceptible to using (you don't know if it was ever in a store or not and just got shipped back due to overstocking), but I just mentally feel..."safer"? about it. I actually haven't tried this product yet (and I've had it for a few weeks now...I just have way too much lipgloss), but from what I've seen it's a very flattering pink.
This was another completely on impulse purchase. This product didn't have the best reviews online, but at 40% off, I thought it looked interesting enough to give it a try. It's like a sheer, blue-toned lipgloss that's supposed to make your teeth look whiter when you wear it. I think the concept is pretty sound; blue-toned red lipsticks can make your teeth look whiter when you wear them (I think it's one of the reasons raspberry hues are easier to wear than corals), but I'm not sure how an actually blue-toned lipgloss will fare. I've also not been able to try this one out yet (seriously...way too many lipglosses, especially now that I'm really interested in trying out more of MAC's lipsticks), but I'll definitely have to give a shot sooner rather than later.

So that was my first order from! It's a pretty standard process and is the same as ordering from any other website. I was surprised at how big of a box they selected to ship my items in, but everything arrived safe and sound. I do wish I could have picked the three samples I got, but I was happy with the ones selected for me, and I did like how there was a true variety of samples included. Overall, I would definitely order from again (and I actually just might since they have a shipping promo on OPI nail polishes...).

And now some random things! I finished my "Garden of Weedin'" cross stitch kit.
I still have to iron it and figure out what I'm going to actually do with it (you can only have so many framed cross stitchings hanging in your house...), but it turned out super cute. I took a hiatus from cross stitching for a while to focus more on my crocheting since it felt more productive (you can wear what you crochet, but you really can't do anything with cross stitches), but now I'm starting to gravitate towards cross stitching again. I think it's almost like meditation for me, since you can really zone out while you're doing it. I also really like to do it while I'm watching videos on Youtube.

I also picked up two magazines.
I got the second issue of Nail It!, the first nail magazine I've seen available to consumers (I know there's at least one nail-themed magazine aimed more towards salon owners/manicurists) and the...May? issue of Allure. I should probably get a subscription in order to save money (seriously, it's like $10 for a full year, and like $4 to buy one issue off the newsstand), but I recently had some issues with telemarketers getting a hold of my phone number and I've been very reluctant to give info like that out to companies (especially since I know that magazine subs give your info to their affiliates).

And that about wraps this post up! Ugh, I really need to figure out a way to make these shorter, unless you prefer them being a little longer with more content? Hmm, this is another thing I should look into...

Thanks for reading! <3

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