Sunday, March 1, 2015

Haul Time! Ulta, Sephora, and Birchbox!

Hello! Hope you're having a great day! I have another haul I want to share with you guys! Since I want to start focuses more on individual product reviews and less on big chunky hauls, if you see anything you'd be interested in hearing a little bit more about, please let me know! I also will probably pick and choose some things to review on my own as well, but it's nice to know what you guys want to see.

I did come to the conclusion that I do still like doing these big ole' haul posts since I like to see other people's hauls and I think it's a good way to catalog what I got when (since I have a terrible memory and easily forget...).
It amuses me that this is the same picture as the thumbnail for my Youtube video; it's the only overveiw picture I have, though, so I thought it would be fitting. This is just my Sephora order, so if you're interested in seeing what else I got from Ulta and Birchbox, please click below!
I normally like to do my hauls in the order of my title, but since I opened with a picture of my Sephora order, I'm going to shake things up a little this time (and it will bother my OCD but what can you do. I could change the title of post, but then it wouldn't match my video. Which I could probably also change, but then I'd have to change the thumbnail and at this point I'm just running this into the ground and I'm probably the only person who actually cares so I apologize for this digression.) and start with Sephora!
I ended up placing two very small orders since there were a couple 100-point rewards that were new for February that I wanted to get my hands on. I'm actually not sure if you can just order x-point reward items and not have to make a purchase, but I'd feel weird about it so I usually just buy something $5 or under. I have two orders because the first time I placed an order, one of the 100-point reward items wasn't showing up as a option to add to my cart, so I'm not sure if it was sold out or unavailable or something. I went to the x-point rewards boutique on the website (it basically just shows you everything that's available) and the item I wanted was there, so I added it to my cart that way and placed my second order. These are all the samples I got! I ended up with seven, so not sure how the extra one snuck in there (I believe the Algenist sample was the extra).
I just ran out of my brush shampoo, so I was glad to purchase another bottle. I get the small size because I don't feel like I go through it fast enough to justify getting the bigger bottle, even though it's technically cheaper to do so. I've been using the Sephora brand brush shampoo for years now and have been quite happy with it and would recommend it if you're looking for a new brush shampoo and not sure what to try next.
I also picked up a travel-sized pouch of the First Aid Beauty Ultra Repair Cream. I'm not the biggest fan of this eco-pouch type packaging since it reminds me so much of a foil packet (even though it isn't; it's durable and recclosable), but the next size up is a little too big for me to get through before it goes bad and was double the price. I love this cream and highly, highly recommed that everyone have at least this little size in their makeup collection, especially if you live in a dry environment or if you do have some skin issues like eczema. When ever I get cracks or irritation on my face, I apply just a dab or two of this lotion twice a day and it helps it heal super quickly. It's very soothing and has collodial oatmeal as the active ingredient.
For my 100-point rewards I got a little mini pot of Renewed Hope In A Jar Eye (one of Philosophy's newer products) and...
...a Pink Gel Coat nail strengthener and brightener! This was the 100-point reward that didn't show up at first, which made me sad because it was the one I wanted the most. Which is why I went back and made a second order to get it! I love trying eye creams since that's one of the skincare areas that I struggle with the most (fine lines/wrinkles under the eyes aren't fun at 27 since they're really only going to get worse) so I'm excited to try the Renewed Hope for eyes and you guys know I'm a sucker for a nail product.
Not sure how well it shows up here, but I am a little concerned that the brush in my pink gel coat is a little wonky. It looks like there are some splayed bristles on the edges, though that might just be how it suspends in the bottle. I have yet to try it, so it might be nothing, but I would be upset if my brush was messed up.
With little to no transition, let's move to Ulta! As you may or may not know, Benefit has come out with a new mascara called Roller Lash! It actually just released on February 27th, but pretty much everyone was offering deluxe samples of it. Sephora was offering it with a $25+ purchase (and still might, not sure), Birchbox offered it with any full size Benefit purchase, but Ulta had the best deal: with a special coupon, you could get a sample of it with any purchase. Which I did!
I may or may not make a post specifically about Roller Lash; since I only have the deluxe sample and I don't think I'm going to purchase the full size, I'm not sure how informative people will find it. My feelings about Roller Lash are similar to how I feel about the They're Real Push-Up Liner: great idea and applicator (in this case brush), but the formula needs some work.
Not all of these products were purchased at the same time, but they were bought fairly close together (to the point where it kind of blurs and I can't say for sure which was with which...which is sad and goes to show how terrible my memory really is). My Ulta seems to get stock of the NYX Soft Matte Lip Creams in waves, so when I see a color I want, I know I should probably get it or it will sell out and will probably be sold out for a while. This is Transylvania!
This is the darkest soft matte lip cream and since I love a vampy lip and the soft matte lip cream formula, I wanted to give it a try.
To go along with the "vampy lip" look, I also picked up a lip liner pencil in the color Black Berry.
I tend to avoid purchasing NYX's pencil products in store since they're not sealed and most of the time they're all swatched and touched and generally icky, but I've noticed that more and more NYX products are coming sealed. Which is awesome! I'm actually not sure how well a pencil will work under a soft matte lip cream, but I have other dark lip products that will benefit from a dark pencil.
Not sure what happened when I swatched these; it looks like Transylvania got a little out of control! The top is Transylvania and the bottom is Black Berry. I think Transylvania is now the darkest lip color I own (if you don't count my black lipstick); I love the blackened reddish purple it swatches as!
So here's a totally random thing! This is a Pedi-Scrub Foot Buffer from Spongeables in the Lavender and Tea Tree Oil aromatherapy scent. I don't spend a lot of time in the bath section of Ulta, so I never really looked into these products before. I've been kind of foot care focused lately and I always seem to neglect my feet in the shower (I wash them, but I never spend any time on them. I do have a foot brush with a pumice stone and rasp though, so I have been getting better) so this sounded interesting to try. You can get a bigger size that has more washes in it, but I wanted to start small since I didn't know if I would like it or not. I also don't like storing these types of products; I don't want to keep it in my shower since I worry it will stay wet and get moldy and/or all the product will wash out, but it's annoying to store it outside the shower since it's wet and soapy after I use it. I have a similar storage issue with my konjac sponges; I end up letting them dry out on a paper towel on a stool. I should probably invest in a soap dish or something. I've used this a few times now and I do really like, storage problems aside.
Essence released another stamping plate! I really like the idea of nail stamping, but I don't do it often enough to justify investing in tools and plates, so I'm glad Essence has these little sets of a stamper, scraper, and plate for about $4! I'm actually curious about the Essence line of cosmetics; it's very affordable and people seem to really like some of the products, but the thing that stops me from purchasing anything from it is that nothing is sealed. Nothing. And that's really gross, especially when it comes to mascara and lip products. Unfortunately, people can be quite inconsiderate and many will just try on products willy-nilly; It's a huge pet peeve of mine. I could purchase Essence off the Ulta website, but I don't want to have to spend $25-$50 for free shipping just to try some $3 eyeliners. But! These stamper sets are pretty neat and now I have even more designs.
Finally from Ulta I got a Smashbox lipstick! Random, I know, but my Ulta was having a Smashbox event and I ended up trying their Be Legendary lipstick in the color Legendary and I fell in love. Smashbox products have been pretty hit or miss with me so I generally don't pay too much attention to the line, but everything about this lipstick impressed me. The color was flattering, it felt comfortable on my lips, it had an amazing wear-time (even through light eating and drinking), and when it did start to fade it did so evenly so my lips never looked patchy or like they needed a touch up. This is definitely a more expensive lipstick at $20, but if you're looking for a great red, I'd say give this one a try.
Now for Birchbox! I love ordering things from Birchbox; there are a ton of discount codes out there and, if you have points, you can save yourself a ton of money! I waited until I got my February 2015 Birchbox, did my reviews to get my points, and cashed them in on this order.
My poor box got banged up in the mail, which concerned me since I had ordered some nail polish and I was worried that it had broken, but everything was well wrapped and it all arrived safe.
Dr. Jart is pretty much my favorite brand for BB creams ever (along with some awesome skincare products and masks!) and since I was running low on my other BB creams, I picked up this set! I believe this set was released for the holidays, though it seems to still be available from both Sephora and Birchbox.
You get two 15mL deluxe/travel sized BB creams: the Premium BB cream, which is basically the original...
...and the Radiance BB cream. I've tried the Premium before and loved it (though the Black Label Detox is still my favorite), but I haven't tried the Radiance version before. The full sizes of these BB creams is 45mL for $36-$39 depending on what type, so the $18 I paid for these two 15mL tubes was a great deal. Which was made even greater since I used $20 worth of points!
I also picked up the Gala's Gems mini nail polish set from Color Club! I've always heard good reviews for Color Club polishes, but I've never actually tried any myself! I don't think there's any place local that sells them and most of the places I've found to purchase them online don't really offer free shipping. Not only does Birchbox carry Color Club polishes (even though they seem to be all sold out most of the time), but if they're a featured brand you get free shipping! Which it was, so I did!
Gala is beauty blogger/some kind of celebrity (I don't follow these things too closely) and she helped curate the colors in this set. All four of these shades are great for spring and have a pearlescent/frosty finish reminiscent of the 90's. Some reviews of these colors say they look dated, but that was exactly the look Color Club was going for. I actually really like the pearl/frost finish since a lot of the polishes I have aren't like that. I'm not a fan of this whole 90's revival thing that's going on, but I am a fan of these polishes and their finish!
I also got a free sample with my Birchbox order! If you purchased a full-sized skin care product, you could pick between two Shiseido samples. I wasn't sure if the Dr. Jart set would count as a full sized product and I was kind of worried that code had not worked since it did not list my free sample on my order confirmation or invoice, but I did get it so I guess it did work! Not sure if that's how it always is with Birchbox codes since this was the first time I had used one to get a free sample, but if so that is a little annoying. I picked the Urban Environment Oil-Free UV Protector SPF 42 since I can always use a sunscreen.

And that's it for this haul! I'm going to make separate posts for the Gala Gems Color Club set and the Smashbox lipstick since I do want to talk a little more in-depth about them and show off some swatches, so if you're interested in hearing more about those products check back soon!

Thanks for reading! <3

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