Today is just not my day. I woke up too early and lacking sleep on a Saturday morning from a bad dream; realized that despite having gone to Loblaws a mere 3 days ago, I’d forgotten to buy eggs; and upon going to the grocery store yet again, had a bus cancelled on me, making me wait an hour outside in the cold.
So. I am going to revel in the Sephora VIB haul I made on Thursday. Except now that I’m going through my pictures, my haul seems abysmally small considering the amount of money I’d spent…
Sephora had a VIB event (which I’d mentioned here) where VIB’s and a friend got 15% off as well as a Sephora umbrella and a bag of samples. If you missed it, don’t worry too much, as VIB’s will still have 15% off until April 6th.
Here’s what I’d intended to purchase on my way to Sephora:
MAKE UP FOR EVER Aqua Cream in 18 Purple and 2 Steel
Well, that’s not entirely true. I knew I was going to get one MUFE Aqua Cream for sure – the second was a contemplation-in-progress. I was saving the MUFE Aqua Cream purchase especially for a GWP, as the price tag is hefty: $25 CAD for a single pot.
I currently own Aqua Creams in 13 Warm Beige (champagne shimmer) and 15 Taupe (taupe brown shimmer), which I’d gotten in a MUFE Lesson 1 Natural Eyes kit back in October. I’d been trying to decide between 17 Plum (burgundy plum shimmer), 18 Purple (light lilac shimmer), and 21 Turquoise (vibrant turquoise shimmer).
I got a sample of 17 Plum, but I don’t love it as much as I thought I would. I didn’t think 21 Turquoise would be as wearable on a regular basis, so I settled on 18 Purple as you see on the left. I also picked up 2 Steel (silver gray shimmer) on the right to complement the lilac – hope they look as good as I imagine they do! I should also be able to mix and match them with the champagne and taupe I have right now.
Unfortunately, intentions don’t always reflect in actions. And so it was, in this case. Here’s what I ended up walking away with:
Left to right:
- Sephora harmony trio bronzer in bronze
- Sephora harmony trio bronzer in pink
- Origins Clear Improvement active charcoal mask
- NARS lipstick in Dolce Vita
- Bare Escentuals bareMinerals Radiant & Refreshed 6-piece collection
- MAKE UP FOR EVER Aqua Cream in 18 Purple
- MAKE UP FOR EVER Aqua Cream in 2 Steel
- Sephora Dramatic Eye double ended brush: eyeliner & crease
- Sephora Smoky cream liner in rags to riches
- Sephora Smoky cream liner in water park
The progression of purchases is as follows:
After swatching various Aqua Creams on the back of my hand and deciding on 18 Purple and 2 Steel, I proceeded to ask the nearest Sales Associate (SA) for a good lipstick recommendation. I have never bought my own lipstick – all the ones I currently own are either given to me by my mother (1) or gotten via GWP’s (3). So I had no idea where to start, let alone what was flattering. Taking a leaf out of Sunny‘s book (blog), I asked the SA for a nice moisturizing lipstick that was natural-looking: a.k.a. “my lip colour but better”. This way I wouldn’t be too intimidated to wear it often. She picked up NARS Dolce Vita and proceeded to apply it to my lips – I loved the colour, so I decided to take the plunge.
NARS lipstick retails for $30 CAD. This was my first NARS purchase as well as my first lipstick purchase. I love the packaging – it looks so sleek and professional!
I then proceeded to ask the SA if she knew of a good mask that draws out impurities without requiring scrubbing. She led me over to B. Kamins, a brand I can’t seem to find on the Sephora website. A Google search only yielded 2 products on Sephora, but I remember an entire section in the store dedicated to B. Kamins. Ben Kaminsky is a Canadian Chemist who developed skincare lines for mature skin, sensitive skin, acne, menopausal skin, extra dry skin, and men. The SA recommended the Purifying Mask, as she loved it and uses a lot of B. Kamins products. But because it was $50 CAD, I wanted to look for a less expensive alternative. I’d read a review on Origins’ charcoal mask, so I chose that instead for $26 CAD.
Origins is a fairly new brand in Canadian stores, so the SA said she hadn’t yet tried this product. She told me that other staff members have used Origins products and love them, so this mask should be promising as well. The mask also boasts a lot of natural ingredients, formulated without parabens, sulfates, synthetic fragrances, synthetic dyes, petrochemicals, phthalates, GMOs, or triclosan. Neither mask requires a scrubbing for exfoliation, just a gentle wash-off.
The SA also gave me a generous sample of B. Kamins Purifying Mask to try out as well. Here’s what it looks like:
The description on their website is as follows:
A deep cleansing clay mask to help purify skin and absorb excess surface oil. Mattifying and balancing actives help control shine, while natural plant extracts help rid the skin of impurities. A specialized skin lightening complex helps fade past acne scars and brighten the complexion while a blend of natural fruit acids moisturize and help renew skin cells. Results: skin appears refreshed and its texture more refined for a healthier, clearer complexion.
Oily, combination, and normal skin. Recommended for non-inflammatory acne conditions. Mature skin with hormonal fluctuations.
A treatment to help reduce breakouts, purify pores, even out skin tone, and absorb impurities in the skin to help leave you with healthier, clearer skin.
- Oil-, color-, and fragrance-free; won’t irritate skin.
- Mattifying and balancing actives help reduce shine and provide an all-day matte finish.
- Helps to absorb excess oil and sebum secretions.
- Specialized lightening complex evens out skin tone and brightens the complexion.
- Anti-inflammatory to ease the discomfort of acne breakouts.
- Anti-microbial ingredients help prevent future breakouts.
- Anti-oxidants help protect against free radical damage.
- Formulated with essential nutrients, soothing herbal extracts, and water-binding ingredients that soothe and rehydrate skin to provide a more uniform, brighter, and firmer complexion.
The SA also showed me how to apply the MUFE Aqua Creams with a large fluffy brush – I have always been using my fingertips as I couldn’t get my shadow or concealer brush to pick up the cream. She also gave me some tips on my eyeshadow primer problem (we can talk about that another day). But here is where she left me to browse before she helped me with checkout (I had some other transaction issues she agreed to help me out with).
My meandering led me past the sale section of Sephora – this is where you find all the soon-to-be-discontinued products that haven’t already been sold out. And sometimes, you really get some fantastic goodies:
The double-ended eyeliner and crease brush was on sale for $7 CAD, the trio blushes for $5, the smoky cream liners for $3. $3 CAD! If memory serves me correctly, they retailed for about $14-15 originally, which was what put me off from buying them as I already had enough higher-end gel liners. But $3? Are you kidding me? Apparently both these shades are being discontinued – I cannot fathom the reason, as they are absolutely beautiful. Probably because they are not go-to colours and therefore less popular.
So I continued browsing. Until I encountered the white, fluffy, oh-so-soft brush in this Bare Escentuals collection. None of the other products mattered so much to me – from the moment I laid fingers on that brush, I was a goner.
Left to right:
- Tinted Hydrating Mineral Veil Finishing Powder (somewhat contradictory – there is a hydrating mineral veil and a tinted mineral veil – is this a new melding of the two?) – 0.05 oz new twist-top packaging
- Eyecolor in Renew – full-sized 0.02 oz
- Flawless Definition Curl & Lengthen Mascara – full-sized 0.33 oz
- the oh-so-soft-and-fluffy Mini Hydrate & Brighten brush
- Pretty Amazing Lipgloss in Sass (limited edition Lip Color, which is indicated as a lipstick on the site) – full-sized 0.13 oz
- Purely Nourishing Moisturizer for combination skin (not my skin type but beggars can’t be choosers, right?) – 30 mL
This 6-piece set retails for $49 CAD. Pretty good for 3 full-sized products that already total $58.50 CAD if bought individually.
At this point, I marched right up to the SA and said to her: “I need to stop browsing now.” Quick mental math had me realizing I may quickly end up in debt if I continued to peruse any further. At checkout, even the SA commented, “Wow, you really stocked up! It’s the perfect time to do it though!” And she was right – my total wasn’t quite as monstrous as I thought it was. But still pretty monstrous.
I got my free samples in a Sephora-printed Ziploc bag:
Left to right, top to bottom:
- Thomas Sabo Charm Kiss: a luscious chocolate, champagne and strawberry kiss
- Juicy Couture Viva La Juicy: wild berries and mandarin; honeysuckle, gardenia and jasmine; amber, caramel, vanilla, sandalwood and praline.
- Dior Hydra Life Skin Perfect Pore Refining Perfecting Moisturizer
- Sephora Perfecting Ultra-Smoothing Primer
- Bumble and bumble Thickening Shampoo and Thickening Conditioner duo pack
- glow by dr. brandt Overnight resurfacing serum and Ruby crystal retinol hydracreme duo pack
- Givenchy Mister Light Instant Light Corrective Pen in 4 Mister Macaroon (medium complexions)
- Sephora Full Action Extreme Effect Mascara
And of course, the biggest incentive for the Sephora trip in the first place: the Sephora umbrella!
The umbrella is vibrant and of course, embellished with the Sephora logo and name. It feels quite sturdy and capable of withstand a windy downpour. A nice stylish replacement for my broken umbrella (which I’ve had for 8 years)!
This marks the biggest in-store Sephora haul I’ve ever made. I’ve had expensive online hauls, but that was because I needed to purchase $120 CAD in order to get free shipping, and my total would inevitably be over that by quite a margin. I’ve always gotten the cute mini-sized Sephora shopping bags, with an occasional larger rectangular-sized bag. I had no idea there was an even larger square-shaped bag. I’m going to have to save this one to mark the special occasion.
Have you hauled yet? What did you get? If you haven’t, make sure to take advantage of the 15% off for VIB’s until April 6th!
(Image source: http://www.bkamins.com)