Friday, December 20, 2013

Another Holiday Haul! - Sephora Black Friday, Ulta, and Kohls

Hello! So, I like buying things. But who doesn't? And I bought more things! Well, these things were bought pretty far in the past now; these are things I picked up Black Friday and the following week or so (the details are a little fuzzy now; I've been buying so much for Christmas and all that, it's hard to keep track of when I bought things). This isn't everything I got; I didn't want to show off any Christmas presents since my family is very keen on keeping Christmas gifts a secret and I don't want to ruin anyone's surprise (this is most likely why I'm such a sucker for mystery boxes).

For Black Friday, I didn't really want to leave my house, so lucky for me there were a lot of great deals online! I actually did go to Target on "Black Friday" (it was like 11pm on Thanksgiving) since we live so close, but I just bought toilet paper. Yup, on Black Friday. Last year I bought ketchup and some Pokemon cards. I find it amusing. Anyways! So, yes, I took advantage of stores offering their Black Friday deals online, one of those being Sephora! I was lucky and got most of what I wanted, but I missed on the Philosophy face cleanser for $10. I guess the Black Friday deals went up 11:00pm my time (CST) so I missed them at first. I thought Sephora might do it like that (so they went up at midnight...is it Eastern time? I don;t actually know. I could probably Google it but meh), but when I refreshed the page at 11:00pm, I didn't see the Black Friday deals anywhere (there's usually a big banner you click on). It wasn't until about 11:30pm that it finally popped up for me, and by then all the Philosophy face cleanser were gone. Sad times.

I also got some things from physical stores; I went the Saturday morning after Black Friday and it was so nice; the stores were pretty dead but all the Black Friday (well, most of them) were still going on. I never had to wait in line very long and there weren't really any people. The mall did start to fill up around lunchtime, but by then I was already on my way home. I did make one more stop during the week after Black Friday, since I had some coupons that didn't go into effect until December 5th (I think in one of my videos, I talk about waiting for a bus that never came in 5°F weather and my dedication to shopping. It's sad).
Hmm, I don't know if I like this transition without a "just opened" box picture, or a picture of the bags things came in or something...it feels so naked and boring. I supposed it can't be helped now, so let's get to it! As I said above, Sephora offers its Black Friday deals online! This is great for me since I hate crowds and the idea of having to drive to my mall and deal with that madness does not appeal to me in the slightest. I got most of what I wanted though, again, like I said above, I didn't get the thing I most wanted, which was the Philosophy cleanser (my mom really, really wanted it for Christmas and now I have this weird complex about how I let her down even though she assured me it was okay).

Like always, I got three samples with my order. I usually try to avoid the fragrance samples, but I got the Clean to use as a stocking stuffer and the Pink Sugar was to satisfy my curiosity; my mom loves Pink Sugar and I don't think I've ever actually smelled it (I've probably smelled it on her but didn't realize). For my third sample, I picked up a foil packet of Origins GinZing energy-boosting moisturizer because I liked it the last time I tried it, but you only get one or two uses out of the packet.

I only got one thing that was a Black Friday deal that wasn't a Christmas present, and that was this Tokyomilk Dark Tin:
This is the first products I've ever purchased from Tokyomilk/Tokyomilk Dark, though I have been interested in them for some time now. There is a store in our big mall called "The Afternoon" that my husband and I have dubbed the "hipster store" (though, technically, Urban Outfitters is the reigning king of hipster stores). It carries a lot of quirky home goods and gift-type items (so things like books and little trinkets) and it used to carry a bunch of Tokyomilk perfume (if you want to see everything Tokyomilk/Tokyomilk Dark offers, check out their website at http://tokyo-milk.com/ ). I really like the aesthetic of Tokyomilk; it has a vintage/artsy/unique kind of vibe (which explains why it fit in nicely at the hipster store). Sephora only carries products from the Tokyomilk Dark line, which I find kind of odd. Tokyomilk Dark is a more "gothic" type of aesthetic, with more complex and deeper scents.
In this cute little tin, you get a .16 fl oz rollerball of Tainted Love and lip tint in Get Lucky. I believe this is the only way to get the lip tint, and I don't think Tokyomilk Dark currently sells them in any other scent/color. Tainted Love is described as "Dark Vanilla Bean, Sparkling Citrus, Orchid, White Tea, Sandalwood, Tonka Bean" and is a very wearable scent. Usually, I don't like dark, heady perfumes; I find them too heavy and overwhelming, but I think the balanced notes of vanilla and citrus help keep this perfume somewhat light, at least for a "dark" scent.

The lip tint is different from a lot of other tube glosses I've tried; it's thicker and fairly heavily scented (to me it smells like violet gum/candy). It's a deep, sheer raspberry color with glitter (I'll have a swatch of it on my hand at the end).
I also picked up another Nano Lip Liner, this time in the color Real Red. I don't know why I didn't pick this up the first time I ordered a Nano Lip Liner; I've never used lip liners before but now that I want to start experimenting with bolder, brighter lip colors, including reds, I figured I'd need to invest in one or two liners.

To go along with my new Nano lip liner, I also got a Nano sharpener!
These aren't actually called "Nano sharpeners" anymore, they're just called "small sharpeners", but I believe they were at one time since it's how a lot of people refer to them in the reviews section. These come in four different colors (blue, green, purple, and pink), and I'm thinking about picking up another in a different color so I can have one just for my eyeliners and one just for my lip liners (because I'm OCD like that). I haven't actually used this yet, but the reviews are pretty good so we'll see!

I also got another small bottle of Sephora's daily brush cleanser.
This is an anti-bacterial spray that you can use on your brushes to remove light traces of make-up; you can use it, as the name implies, daily, and it will help keep your brushes from getting too messy and help you stretch the time between when you have to actually shampoo them (which you should do about once a week. I...don't clean my brushes as often as I should, which isn't good for my skin, my make up, or my brushes). To be honest, I've never tried any other kind of brush cleanser, so I don't have anything to compare Sephora's to, but I've always used it and have had pretty good results with it.

Finally, for my special gift with purchase (if you order online, there's always some deluxe sample or special gift you can get if you're a Beauty Insider and making a purchase over $25), I got the 12 sampler pack.
You could pick one of three different bag designs and I went with this one because I liked how it looked like there was a creepy baby on it. Inside, everyone got 12 of the same samples.
They're all essentially foil packet samples, which is lame, but I didn't like the other items they had on offer that day, so I figured I'd get this set just for the clutch (which is comparable, if not a little better in quality, to an ipsy bag).

Annnd here's a quick swatch of the lip liner (on the left) and the lip gloss (on the right). The lip gloss swatches kind of weird; to me, it looks almost like dried blood on my hand, but on my lips it looks pretty.

I also ended up going to Sephora in store!I didn't intend to buy anything (I'm trying to cut down on buying make up; I spent a lot over the last two months and...yeah), but I did end up picking up another set of charcoal face mask pods from Origins.
I wanted to get these with my online order, but they were sold out. I think they are actually still sold out online, which is a shame because these are pretty awesome and for $2 a mask (it's $8 for four pods), these are also a pretty good deal (you can buy a bigger tube for $24, but I'm not sure how much you save buying the big tube versus the individual pods).

There was a special going on during the time I went to Sephora in-store where VIB Rouge's could get a mirror compact with any purchase. I could have gotten it with an order I placed online, but I chose not to because I wanted one of the other special items instead and Sephora only lets you use one promo code per order.
I used to have another mirror compact from Sephora that I got a long time ago for being a VIB, but unfortunately it broke and I had to replace it (I got a mirror compact from Forever21. It's pink with cats). This compact feels pretty sturdy and I think it's better quality than the one I got from Forever21 (which I thought was kind of expensive for something from Forever21; I paid about $4 for it). It opens by pushing the little button on the bottom, kind of like a pocket watch. My favorite part about this compact, however, was the message from Sephora inside:
At least we're being honest with ourselves and that, in order to be a VIB Rogue, you have to be addicted.
They also randomly gave me this tiny bottle of water. Not sure if this was a special thing to go along with the compact, but I thought it was a nice gesture and it did make me feel extra special, so kudos to Sephora.

While out and about, I also went to Kohls and Ulta (I think...I honestly don't remember the time frame. It's...been a while since I bought these things) to use up some coupons! At Ulta, I had a $5 off a $10 purchase and I picked up two things:
I got this set of brushes from Ecotools since I needed a new powder brush and I wanted some more eyeshadow brushes. One thing I don't like about Ulta is that everything there is a little more expensive than at Target, but this way at least I get points (did I tell you guys I went Platinum at Ulta? I don't even know how I managed that since I only really buy hair care stuff there). Overall, I'm pretty happy with these brushes, especially with the price I paid for them. I've only ever used Sephora brushes (which isn't entirely true; I have some elf brushes, my brush from the Naked2 palette, my new Sigma brush, and a few others) which I don't think are generally worth the money. Sephora brushes are pretty expensive and in my experience they don't last very long. I've only had my current set for about a year, year and a half now and they are all ragged and shedding and sad. I try to take good care of my brushes; I wash them weekly (...sort of), I let them dry laying flat, not sure what else I can do to make them last longer. I haven't had any issues with my elf brushes, so I get the feeling that Sephora brushes just aren't that nice. These are soft and seem to do their job well, though the powder brush wasn't as full as I was hoping. I may have to get bigger one.
The other item I got from Ulta is this Hair Stay Style Boost by KMS California. I saw this product in a video by BaileyB (check it out here: http://youtu.be/kmGv8pc6s-c ) and knew I had to try it. This is a style primer/thermal protector but what makes it so cool is that it CRACKLES! You shake it up, spray it in your hand, and it crackles like mad for a few seconds. If you want to see it in action, watch the video. After it finishes crackling, you rub your palms together until it turn into a clear gel and then you run it through your hair. I can't speak for the thermal protection part since I don't use heat tools, but I've noticed a big difference in how nice my hair looks! I've never used a hair primer before, but I am definitely a convert!

Finally, I went to Kohls and picked up another set of hand lotions by Cake Beauty.
I had another $10 promo gift card to use up and while I normally use them on clothes (the stuff that's 80% off; I would never buy anything full price at Kohls, I think it's all grossly over priced), I couldn't pass up the opportunity to get more of these, especially in winter when I go through hand lotion like crazy. I love these little guys; not only do they smell great (the coconut and cream one is my favorite), but they're super hydrating and free of parabens, phthalates, mineral oil, and petrolatum, among other things. This set of four is $14, so it's a little more expensive than if you were to buy a big tube of one scent, but I like the variety since all the scents are nice. With the $10 promo gift card, I ended up paying $4 (plus tax, so a little more than that), making these little guys about $1 a tube. Awesome. If you get a coupon, too, I highly recommend giving these a try!

And that's that for this haul! Erm...sorry for being so far behind. It's been pretty crazy at work and at home these last two-threeish weeks with the holidays but I'm going to keep trying to get these posts cranked out and up before Christmas!

Thanks for reading! <3

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