Sunday, January 4, 2015

Post-Christmas 2014 Haul! - What I Bought With My Christmas Money!

Hello! Hope you're having a good day! I'm trying to get a little rest and relaxation in before work starts again on Monday (I ended up with a whole weekend off; very rare!). We're doing inventory, which is probably my least favorite thing to do ever, but once it's done, it's done for at least another six months, so there's that silver lining.

We're well into the New Year now, and I think all the holiday craziness is finally on it's last legs. I think all the after Christmas sales have finally come to a close, which is sad because I like good deals, but also nice since that means smaller crowds of grouchy people. I've pretty much used all of my Christmas money (...there were things I was waiting to buy until I got it so a lot of it was already earmarked) though I still have some gift cards floating around. I wanted to share with you guys some of the things I ended up getting (though technically this is a "Part I" since I just had another round of retail therapy yesterday, but I'm going to do that separately); some of these deals are still available, though some unfortunately are not.
Per usual, I have a video of the things I got! You may notice that my hair is significantly lighter; part of my Christmas money went towards a root touch-up/refresh!
In this haul, I used some Christmas money, along with a couple gift cards. My parents' gave me a $25 gift card for both Sephora and Ulta. Ulta was (and still is!) having a big sale on nail polish PLUS they had a ton of new Nyx products in stock. Including the Wicked Lippies!
I'll start with what I got from Ulta, but with my one random item (so not nail-related or Nyx). This is a new Covergirl Lip Lava in the color Ooh La Lava.
Normally, I'm not a big fan of Covergirl's products. I just don't think they ever perform well for me. Also that Flamed Out pencil I had really soured me on their products. These, however, are really pretty in the tube. They're all super shimmery and are supposed to be the same color on your lips as they are in the tube.
I don't know why my camera decided the floor was what it should focus on, but I wanted to show that these lip glosses have brush applicators, instead of the usual doe-foots. Personally, I hate these kind of brush applicators; even on my NARS lip gloss, I think they are fiddly to use and are not as user-friendly as a good ole' doe-foot. Interesting choice.
Here it is swatched; I thought about getting one of the bolder colors, and I still might, depended on how I feel about this one, but I went with a more lavender color. I've been really into purple lips lately.
 On to Nyx! I was super excited when I saw that my Ulta got the Wicked Lippies in stock; they've been out for a long time now (since September I think), but they've only been available from the Nyx website. I've come close to purchasing these a few times, but I hate paying for shipping and wasn't really in a place to spend the $25+ needed to get free shipping. This first one (I got three; hoping to get more) is the one I wanted the most: Mischievous.
 In the fall, I was into "gold all the things" and the icing on the gold cake would have been a gold lipstick. There are a few brands who make gold lipstick, but they're higher-end, so they were quite expensive, especially since I'm not sure how often I'm actually going to wear a gold lipstick. Then Nyx answered my gold lipstick prayers with a metallic gold, opaque lipstick! I had to wait a few months, but now it is mine!
I had a hard time narrowing down the other colors I wanted, but I went with these two: Betrayal and Power. Betrayal is a gorgeous metallic deep vampy purple and Power is a frosty mauve.

 "Power" is a weird looking word in French... Again, I love purple lipstick!
Here they are swatched on the back of my hand; top to bottom is Betrayal (so pretty!), Mischievous (gold!), and Power (frosty!). From the swatches, these lipsticks feel creamy and look very pigmented.
Another Nyx product I wanted to get, but that has been consistently out of stock in the color I wanted on the website is the Wonder Stick in Light. I think if this had been in stock the same time the color of the Wickie Lippies that I wanted were, I would have placed an order.
This is a dual-ended stick with a cream highlighter on one side and a cream contour color on the other. There are four shades: Light, Medium, Deep, and Universal. I went with Light over the Universal because the contour color in the Universal stick was much more orange and I didn't think it would look right on my skin tone. I much prefer using cream products for contouring and blush (I find it easier to blend and get the right amount of opacity) and was excited when I saw these were coming out. Apparently, so was everyone else since these get snapped up quickly.
This is a quick swatch on the back of my hand, contour color on top and highlight color on the bottom. Both products are creamy and blend really easily.
There's also a picture tutorial on the box! Handy! I'm still not 100% at contouring yet, but I'm working on it. It can do so much for your face; it's kind of like magic, really.

And then I got way too much nail polish.
All the Zoya Mattes were on sale for less than $5 each.
 I really wanted to get these when they first came out, but I never did since it's hard for me to buy nail polish at full price.
I'm really happy I waited, though, since I got them for half off!
 I got four out of the collection; I didn't get the red or the black one because I'm not that into red nail polish and I figure it's pretty easy to just use a matte top coat over any black nail polish. These are gorgeous, but Loredana is probably my favorite. It's a deep grey color that dries with a matte shimmer finish (similar to the Julep Satin finishes. I think. Or is it the Silk finishes that have the shimmer? Hmm...). Zoya recently annouced their spring Satins line, which I am way too excited for.
 I also picked up two more colors from the Winter 2014 collection. I got Prim...
 And the third Pixie Dust, Thea. Pixie Dusts are my favorite polishes, ever. Well, at least for now. The Ultra Pixie Dusts were also on sale, but again, all three are more on the red side and red polishes just don't interest me that much.
There were a few other colors on sale from the regular line, including Hudson here (which I thought I might already have but I don't! I have Zara, which is similar, but different in tone. Purple nail polish is also my thing. Maybe I just really like the color purple and don't know it...).
I also picked up Blu, which I've had my eye on for a little bit now. I love these really light pastel colors, and I do have one very similar to this (New Birth from China Glaze), but I prefer the Zoya polish formula so I have hopes that this polish will perform better. I don't have any swatches of these polishes because I'm all out of swatch wheels and it's been way too cold to go outside and get more. #nailpolishaddictproblems
There are other brands of polish on sale, including Orly, China Glaze, and Nails Inc, but the only other non-Zoya stuff I got were these two bottles of Orly In A Snap quick dry top coat and Nail Defense nail strengthener.  These were less than a dollar each, so why not?
There was also some Qtica stuff on sale; this is kind of like the higher-end line from the Art Of Beauty, the company that makes Zoya products (at least I think that's how it works). I've never tried anything from the Qtica line before (due to the high price tag), so I couldn't resist getting some sale items. These are the Half Time Polish Drying Accelerator drops; I never have much luck with quick drying drops; they tend to make my polish tacky and smudgey and the opposite of dry. Except the Zoya ones. I have a little mini bottle from a mini starter set I got as a free gift with purchase; I've only used it once and it actually helped my polish dry quickly. And smudge-free! Very impressive. I'm hoping these drops will be just as good, if not better. Plus, they were less than a dollar.
They also had an Intense Cuticle Repair Balm on sale for less than $5 (marked down from $18)! Because, even now, I still don't have enough of these types of products. This is a lanolin-heavy balm (it also has glycerin, beeswax, and aloe) that's supposed to work with your skin to maintain cuticle health and hydration levels. Yay! This is also a sealed product, so while I am slightly concerned about the age of it, I feel better about letting it sit around while I work through my other, opened cuticle products.

...That's a lot of nail stuff. Like I said, I'm pretty sure this sale is still going on, so if you love nail polish, head out to your Ulta and see what's on sale!

And then I got some stuff from Sephora. Technically, I bought one of the things from Sephora before I got my stuff from Ulta, but that's because I ordered it online and it wasn't in my hands until later.
I do like ordering things online because you get samples! Sephora's samples have been pretty lame lately, so these are nothing special. I try and avoid getting fragrance samples if at all possible, but if there's nothing else, I'll get one. Because why not get the maximum three samples?
So, pretty excited to get this set. Also you can see me creepily taking the picture. Awkward. This is the Urban Decay Little Perversions set. This set originally retailed for $45, which I would never pay, but only because these are products I don't really need, not because they're bad. If these products are your jam, $45 is a great price. BUT. It was on sale for $24! It was actually on sale for $24 a little while ago and it sold out (for obvious reasons), but I wasn't all that interested in it since, again, these aren't products I really need. BUT. Then Sephora had an extra 20% off all sale products online AND I had a $25 gift card so then I was able to justify purchasing this set. For $20, this is a pretty amazing deal since you get two full sized Urban Decay eyeliners.
Here's the picture on the back of the box that shows the five products in the Little Perversions set. As the name implies, this set is based around the Perversion mascara and eyeliner. I really like the Perversion mascara and, besides the 24/7 Glide On Eye Pencils, I've never tried any other Urban Decay eyeliners, so this is a good experimentation set for me.
Also, how cute is this bag? If you said "extremely", you'd be correct.
The products came wrapped up all nice in Urban Decay purple tissue paper. I like purple.
This is the product I will probably get the least use out of; not because it's a bad or anything, I just have a bunch of these laying around, including a full size. This is a travel-sized 24/7 Glide On Eye Pencil in Perversion. It's a great black eye pencil, though it is a little on the satin finish side.
And this is a travel-size of the Perversion mascara, the other product in this set that I have used, and loved, before. This tube is actually quite a bit bigger than the deluxe sample size I have, so that's pretty awesome.
And then we move on to the things I haven't tried! This is Subversion, the mascara primer that Urban Decay launched along with the Perversion mascara. I'm sorry this picture isn't sideways; it looked really awkward that way due to the lighting. I believe this is the same size that Urban Decay packaged as an extra with the first wave of full size Perversion mascaras. The only other mascara primer I've used has been tarte's; I didn't really like it, but that was more because it smelled terrible (this is a common issue I have with tarte mascara products). Excited to give this guy a try!
These next two products I'm not very familiar with; outside of eyeshadow and the face products, I'm actually not that well acquainted with many Urban Decay products. This is the All-Nighter Eyeliner. It's a twist up eyeliner pencil and it apparently only comes in the color Perversion, which is the same satiny black as the 24/7 Glide On pencil. This is supposed to be waterproof, and it is full sized, so it's worth $20. Nice. It glides on really nicely and I'm interested in trying it, though it seems to have so-so reviews on the Sephora website. Hmm.
And this is a full sized Ink For Eyes liquid eyeliner, which also apparently only comes in the color Perversion. I'm noticing a theme here. This also retails for $20, so you can see why this set would have been worth the $45 if these were products you really liked/needed. I'm pretty bad at using liquid eyeliners, but I do want to get better; I love how winged eyeliner looks but I just can't seem to get it right. I don't know if it's because I have deep-set/hooded eyes or if I just need more practice, but I hope that I can get it to work. Some day. This pen also has so-so reviews, which is kind of interesting.

I'm pretty sure this set is all sold out, and the extra 20% off sale is over, but this was in the sale section once before, so it may still come back. For $24, if these are products you like or if you are interested in trying other Urban Decay eyeliners, I'd say get it. You get the two full sized liners that retail for $20 a piece, so right there you're saving a nice chunk of change. Plus, that bag is seriously cute.

Since I had about $5 left on my gift card, I went to my local Sephora to spend it. I intended to get one of the new Sea Glass Formula X polishes, but I ended up with something completely different.
Like, extra, super, totally completely different. I love these Sephora Favorites sets. I'm a sucker for sets to begin with since I like getting smaller sized products to try (and I like getting more products for my money) and I "needed" some more cleansing products (I probably didn't, but I feel like I can get a lot of use out of these. Probably more use than I would have gotten out of the nail polish...). This was on one of the promo counters when you first walk in, so it grabbed my attention right away (yay marketing ploys). My Sephora also had the whole Marsala collection, which I was also interested in, but I really don't need any more color cosmetics. Not for a long, long time. This wasn't even on the site yet (it is now), so I pretty much needed it.

For $48, you get twelve cleansing-related products (there are eleven products and a mini Boscia konjac sponge. It's adorable.), which is a pretty good deal. Last years Sephora Favorites skincare sets (if I remember correctly, one was "detox" themed and the other was more "cleansing" themed) were okay; they were about the same price, but you got fewer products in each bag. These are nicely sized this year; they all feel like travel-sizes and not just deluxe sample sizes.
On the back of the box, all twelve products are listed along with sizes, ingredients, country of origin, and any potential warnings (like if something has essential oils or anything).
Some of the products in here I've used (and loved) before, and others are ones that I really wanted to try. Honestly, the only product I'm not interested in in this set is the Sephora brand Waterproof Eye Makeup Remover, but that's more because I have a full size of it already and not because it's a bad product or anything.
I also took a picture of the plastic insert with all the products inside, mostly because I was too lazy to take individual pictures. I also didn't think it made much sense to have individual pictures since I haven't used any of these products yet (I mean, some I have, but not these specific ones, if that makes sense...) and, after I do, I want to do a more detailed review of this set. First impressions, though, are good! As you can see, the products are all nicely sized!
I know I keep talking about it, but look at how cute that konjac sponge is! It's so teeny! Actually, I think that's the same size as the sponges in the Boscia sets. I know I keep talking about it, but seriously, the sizes of these products are pretty generous, especially considering how you're paying less than $50 for this set. I know the Philosophy Purity cleanser in this travel size sells for about $10 alone. January is always the skincare month (it's like the beauty world's version of storage/cleaning/new start kind of themes the shops get this time of year) and this set is a great way to experiment with different cleansers/makeup removers and maybe find something new for the new year. Cheesy.

And that's everything! At least for this post. I have more things, now, but I'll save that for another time. 

Thanks for reading! <3

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