Upcoming Deals from ULTA


Just got my ULTA circular in the mail and wanted to share some of the awesome upcoming deals with you. If you’ve been itching for a little beauty haul, this might just be the time? :) These start on June 9th.

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Attention Shopping Addicts…


Attention all shopping addicts…welcome to your new addiction: Tophatter live auctions. Let me show you how it works!

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Free Pampering For Military at Marinello Schools of Beauty

This Veteran’s Day (that’s Friday, November 11) all military and those associated with the military (spouses, reservists, and moms welcome) can go to a Marinello location for some free pampering!

All locations excluding the Spa Academy locations will be offering a free spa manicure & pedicure to military men & women. Additionally, a special “Marinello Loves Our Vets” postcard will be passed around that can be mailed overseas. This postcard entitles the receiver to 20% off any service at Marinello, and is good all the way through 2/14/12.

Search locations of Marinello Schools of Beauty here.

Pamper Yourself on the Cheap

Everyone loves to be pampered every once and a while. It’s relaxing and indulgent; it makes us feel good. But let’s face it, a lot of people are struggling right now, or at least trying to get by without too many “extras”. Here are 10 tips to keep those extras in your life while spending less.
Tip #1 – Go With Groupon
I cannot stress this enough. Groupon rocks. Now in addition to the daily deal for your area, there are offers called “Groupon Now!” – offers from local businesses that are good for a very short amount of time. They’re designed for someone who wants to do something right now. Every time I check my Groupon app, there’s always special offers from salons and spas offering a deal for a little pampering. For example, here are some of the Groupon Now! deals in my area today:
  • $15 haircut
  • $15 Mystic Tan
  • $35 for wash, conditioning treatment, haircut, and blowdry
  • $25 deep conditioning/scalp treatment
  • $15 spa pedicure
  • $29 1-hour massage
Tip #2 – Say Yes to Yelp!
Have you been on Yelp lately? There’s more to it than reviews. Many businesses offer specials exclusive to Yelpers. One boutique I like to shop at offers 10% off your first purchase if you write an honest review of your experience on Yelp. 
Tip #3 – Cheapest Mani/Pedi Ever
If you really want a little sprucing up but don’t have the cash to spend on a full mani or pedi, duck in for just a polish change. You’ll still have nice, neatly polished nails (that you didn’t have to do yourself!) for a whole lot less. At salons near me this usually costs between $5 and $7.
Tip #4 – Craigslist
The beauty services section of Craigslist always has specials from local salons and individuals looking to build up more clientele, especially mobile beauty businesses. Because it’s more economical, many beauty professionals are opting to become mobile, coming to you rather than paying to rent a station in a salon. If that is something you’d feel comfortable with, it may be an opportunity to save some green!
Tip #5 – Take Advantage of Trims
Most salons I’ve visited offer free bang trims to maintain your style between cuts. Take advantage of this! When your bangs need a trimmin’, don’t pin them to the side and ignore them (I’m guilty!). Go to your salon for a bang trim. You’ll still get the salon experience, your hair will look better, and it was free! 
Tip #6 – Low Maintenance Highlights
Highlights are pretty and look awesome, but can be expensive to maintain. If you are looking for a little less maintenance involved, ask your stylist to do “peek a boo” highlights – highlights that won’t be on the very top layer of hair. The roots are hidden this way and you can get away with waiting longer between touch-ups.
Tip #7 – DIY Color
If you color your hair, you may be able to switch to doing it at home. I recommend not doing it yourself if you are going lighter, but for a long time I was faithful to my trusty Revlon Colorsilk. It’s ammonia free, and very frequently goes on sale at drugstores for 2/$5.
Tip #8 – Make it a Playdate
Remember when you used to sleep over at a friend’s house, stay up all night talking about boys and wishing you had D.J. Tanner’s life because she was so cool? Invite over a girlfriend or two for a grownup slumber party (pajamas optional). Make a pitcher of margaritas, have snacks, and paint each other’s nails just like you’re in jr high again. Better yet, have her bring some of her favorite polishes, so you can use each other’s. It’s like getting new ones! 
Tip #9 – Make it a Sexy Playdate
Have a quiet night in with your partner, and take turns pampering each other! Guaranteed good times. ;)
Tip #10 – Just Ask
If you’re not feeling adventurous enough to try a new salon or spa, it never hurts to ask if they have any specials. In addition to bringing in new clients, everyone’s trying to make sure they keep the ones they already have. Many beauty pros also have referral incentives to offer their clients, so if you have a great stylist or a favorite manicurist, tell your friends and ask them to mention you sent them!
Etiquette Reminders 

– If you are using a coupon, or requesting a special, always mention it when you’re booking the appointment to avoid confusion later on.

– When it comes to gratuities, remember to always calculate based on the full price of the service. 15-20% is customary. There are many great ways to save on beauty services; a lousy tip is not one of them. :)

Beauty.com 20% Off Friends & Family Sale

The 20% off Beauty.com sale is here, everyone! From now through Friday get 20% off your order. But wait, there’s more! ;) Beauty.com is currently offering 12% cash back through Ebates as part of Ebates’ 12th Anniversary event! So remember to log in to Ebates and click through from there instead of just going straight to Beauty.com even though I know it’s tempting because it’s a Beauty.com sale! 

So what are my “stuff to check out” picks from Beauty.com?
Deborah Lippmann nail polish retails for $16, which is pretty steep, so if you have been longing for some of her extremely unique shades, now is a great time to loosen the steel grip you have on the pocketbook. I only have one shade, Across The Universe, and it’s 100% worth the splurge. Same goes for Butter London nail polishes, which are $14 – All Hail The Queen is my favorite.
Beauty.com has a lot of niche brands that you can’t find at Sephora, like It Cosmetics. I’ve been really liking the It Cosmetics brow pencil, and HD powder! Another really nice high-end brand you won’t see at Sephora is Jouer. I’ve mentioned Jouer’s lovely lipstick in Meredith as one of my favorite nudes. I also really like their Luminizing Moisture Tint in Pearl. 
Do you miss CARGO from its Sephora days? Or Sue Devitt? They’re still around, and available at Beauty.com, along with some brands even I haven’t tried yet, like Knockout Cosmetics or Mally Beauty. Of course, if you still want to be a savvy shopper and aren’t open to veering from the Sephora-norm, or just want to stock up on your essential, never-be-without-them items, fabulous brands like NARS, Smashbox, Tarte, Stila, LORAC, Urban Decay, and Too Faced are all available on Beauty.com as well.
I haven’t even gotten into the skin care or bath options at Beauty.com yet, and there’s hair too, wow! Some of my favorite skin care/bath/hair items from Beauty.com are: (note, I am not necessarily using these currently as my skin has changed fairly recently, but they are all products I’ve used and highly recommend!)
I’m not sure if I’m going to be hauling yet. Gotta take a look at the finances. ;) But if you are hauling from this sale, please comment and share!

Saving Cash with Ebates

Ebates is having some special deals going on right now in order to celebrate their 12th birthday. Yeah, you read that correctly – 12. Very few things on the internet have survived for 12 years and continue to grow strongly. For some of my teenage readers, that means Ebates has been around since before you were allowed to use the internet unsupervised! Okay, making myself feel old. Back to the important part – saving some cash with Ebates! Ebates has partnered with several of their most popular retailers to offer 12% cash back in honor of their 12th birthday! You can see the entire list of retailers offering this here, but these are the ones I’m most excited about:

Beauty.com, The Body Shop, The Container Store (great for makeup storage!), Drugstore.com, DSW, Endless, Old Navy, Philosophy, Petco (for my babies!), Sephora, and Stila. 

What is Ebates & How Do I Use It?
Ebates is a great way to save money on online purchasing because for every purchase through one of their thousands of retailers, you get a % cash back just for clicking their link to the retailer. No scams, no hidden catches, just straight cash homies! If you aren’t a member yet you really ought to be (click here to sign up)! I’ve been a member of Ebates since 2007, and my mom is a member too.

So how do you use it? It’s super easy. Once you’re a member, any time you want to do some online shopping go to Ebates.com, log in, and search for the retailer you’re looking to buy from. Ebates has all the latest coupons for that retailer, and a link to shop that store. Click that link. Ebates will open a “tracking ticket”, which is just some information for their system that shows you clicked the link. These tickets are important, because if for some reason something happens and you don’t get the correct cash back, your ticket # is your reference # when contacting customer service. Once the tracking ticket opens, you are redirected to the retailer, and you shop as normal. Within a few days after placing your order, your Ebates account will show new cash back in your account. It’s that simple.

Bath & Body Works Discontinues Cucumber Melon

I heard something that made me sad. Last night on Twitter, Irene (pinkiecharm) reported that Bath & Body Works is discontinuing the cucumber melon line. The reason this makes me sad is cucumber melon shower gel is the first thing I ever bought myself from Bath & Body Works back when I was about 14. This scent has so many memories attached to it for me – you know how scents can do that! Irene seems to feel the same way, according to her blog post about it.

There’s a little bitty silver lining to this, and that’s if you want to stock up, cucumber melon (as well as the rest of the signature line) is buy 3 get 3 free. However, this promo ends tonight. So if you want to stock up now would be a great time. Shipping is free over $50. Yes, this is valid in-store as well.

If you can’t make it during this promo, I’m sure there will be more in the future. It would seem that B&BW is going to sell this until it’s sold out, as they have moved it to their Fond Farewell section for discontinued products.

Recycle Your Denim!

I just heard about a really cool promotion that Gap is doing in their stores now through 10/20. Bring in any old denim to be recycled and they will give you 30% off their 1969 line of jeans. That’s mens, womens, and maternity 1969 jeans. If you have a Gap/Old Navy/Banana Republic card it’ll be 35% off! The recycling program is through Cotton’s From Blue to Green program.

I usually donate any clothes I have if they’re still wearable. I donate to Goodwill, or CHOC (Children’s Hospital of Orange County – I was born there! heehee). But if you have any denim that isn’t wearable anymore because it is torn up, worn, stained, etc. this would be a great alternative to just throwing it out!

I haven’t personally tried the 1969 jeans yet as they are kind of pricey for me, but they look really great. There’s styles for pretty much anyone. Just please, if you love me, don’t get the stirrup jeggings. I mean really.

Do not want! Cute shoes though.

ELF Codes

Since I love cheap thrills (ok, I love anything beauty related…cheap is just a bonus), here are some current promos from ELF!

Buy 1 Item, Get 1 50% off
Applies to any purchase (no minimum/maximum)
Expires 10/4

Free Zit Zapper
$15 minimum purchase
Expires 10/4

1 New Mineral Brush Free
$20 minimum purchase
Expires 10/4

Free Bracelets from ShopTheLook.net
$15 minimum purchase
Expires 10/4

Free Sunglasses
$15 minimum purchase
Expires 10/4

If you aren’t sure what you want to buy to use one of these codes, they just added a ton of brand new items (and new shades of existing items), so it’s worth a look to see if something catches your eye. ;)

Happy hauling! Let me know if you get anything.

Fabulous Fashion Find – At Payless!

I don’t post fashion-related posts very much. Mostly this is because I do not in any way consider myself a fashionista, and there are gazillions of blogs devoted to fashion that could do it much better than I can!

Recently I was trolling the aisles of Payless with my mom. She finally wore her faithful black sandals into the ground, and with some gentle prodding (*ahem* my stepdad grabbed the shoes and literally threw them out into the yard) was convinced it was time for new shoes. Being that Payless has BOGO (buy one get one half off) right now, Mom scored! She got 3 pairs of shoes. If you’re interested, she got these (in both colors) and these. Since she got an odd number of pairs, she treated me to pick out a pair since they would be half off.

Payless has a ton of cute flats right now. I was there hunting for heels, but the inexpensive comfy flats won me over in the end (hence why I have so few heels– this happens a lot!). I wound up taking home their Audrey flat from the American Eagle line (one of Payless’ house brands). Online they are listed at $19.99 and available in fewer colors. In the store, they’re $10! So my cute pair of flats ended up breaking the bank at just $5 after BOGO discount. I chose blue, which I don’t see online. They’re absurdly comfortable, a great color, and just all around cute! I have other colors on my radar because I’m one of those people who buys multiples in many colors when I find something I love. I really have my eye on the purple and black! Doing the quick math, buying both purple and black would set me back $15 + tax after BOGO. Dude. 

Do you shop at Payless? What budget-friendly fashion finds have YOU discovered lately? I want to know! :)
Shoes awesomely provided by my mommy! :)