Sephora Chic Week Sale


If you’re a beauty junkie, Sephora Chic Week is one of your favorite times of the year! That’s when everything is 15% off at Sephora and The sale ends 4/22.

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Bath & Body Works Fall Haul

Okay, y’all know I love me some Bath & Body Works, and the fall scents are usually my favorites. I stopped in today for one reason: Winter Candy Apple. [Read more…]

The Balm Hautelook Haul

TheBalm was on Hautelook again fairly recently, and this time I knew there was one thing I definitely had to have – the Meet Matt(e) palette! A while back they were on Hautelook and I snagged the Nude ‘tude palette and totally missed Meet Matt(e), which sucks because I wanted both, haha. Oh well!! Good things come to those who wait, because this time I was READY and I got my palette! I also grabbed a nail polish, having seen it on Vampy Varnish. Her blog costs me money. We’re both fair skinned and have similar taste in colors, heehee. So…without further babbling, the haulage! [Read more…]

Daiso/Mitsuwa Haul

It seems like this was a long time ago when in fact it was only about a week ago! I met up at Daiso with Mai of Portrait of Mai. Neither of us had ever been to Daiso before but we were really excited. For those of you who don’t know, Daiso is a Japanese dollar store, except everything is $1.50 unless otherwise noted. We also stopped off at Mitsuwa afterward!

This Daiso is pretty new, the first one to Orange County actually. It’s about time!!!! It’s in the same shopping center as a Mitsuwa, which is a Japanese market and food court. I was thrilled enough to have a Mitsuwa, and then when Daiso opened a short time afterward I was thrilled! As you can see, I did a lot of hauling! My entire spend at Daiso was about $21, then I got some stuff at Mitsuwa too. This picture doesn’t include three things I got for Mr. Boyfriend. :)

Mai and I are both totally in love with Hi Chews, which are a soft chewy candy sort of like Starburst. I got a bag of Strawberry, and small packs of Apple, Peach, and Mango. As you can see, I had to dig in to my haul right away – the Apple Hi Chews are already open, as well as another bag of random gummi candy I picked up which just had gummis in Apple and Mango flavor in it. Noticing a theme? And of course, you pretty much can’t go into any Japanese stores without buying some Pocky. I got a box for me and a box for Mr. Boyfriend. Yummy.

Beauty-related! We were on the hunt for this brush washing soap which is apparently the most amazing brush shampoo ever but we didn’t find it. Womp womp. But I did get some little teeny travel bottles that will be PERFECT for my trip to Chicago this weekend! There’s 2 spray bottles and a little set that has 1 flip-top bottle and 1 tiny jar. I plan on decanting some of my hair products into those spray bottles because they take up a ton of room in a suitcase otherwise. I decided to try a face mask (far left). It comes in 2 little pods so you get 2 uses. It’s a pomegranate mask. Wish me luck with that one! Then I also decided to try a peach lip balm. Yum? Let’s hope?

I was also delighted to see a little mini spray bottle of Hyaluronic Acid toner (that’s the little blue bottle on the upper left). That will come in handy to rehydrate my skin after I have been on a plane, and the bottle is a small enough size to go in my 1-qt bag. The bigger bottle next to it is something I was raving to Mai about, Mandom Cleansing Express!!! What’s that, you may ask? Only the greatest makeup remover ever! This is my third bottle of it. That came from Mitsuwa, where it was around $13.

Then, completely unrelated to anything– set of colored pens! For $1.50! I love pens. :)

I had a blast, got some yummy treats and some awesome stuff, and best of all I got to meet Mai, who is delightful! She’s the only other OC beauty blogger I know, so I’m really happy we got to hang.

Let me know if you want full reviews of anything!

Candle Haulin’

I love scented candles. I don’t know…my explanation to people is usually “chicks dig stuff that smells like stuff”. It’s true though isn’t it? Also the soft light of a candle is very soothing and comforting, even in a brightly lit room. ANYWAY, Bath & Body Works had a sale over Memorial Day Weekend for their lovely candles, so I dragged Mr. Boyfriend in after brunch and we picked up some new scents. [Read more…]

Beauty Army April Kit Unboxing

I had been waitlisted for joining Beauty Army, and this month I finally was able to get in! Weeeeee! Beauty Army is one of those monthly beauty sampling services, but you get to choose your samples! I love that! Everything comes in a nifty reusable box as seen above. I am not sure what I’ll use mine for yet but I know I’ll find something. I’m such a packrat! Anyway, here’s what’s in my Beauty Army box this month…

The first item I got is a sample sized Redness Rescue from MAD Skincare. I’ve never tried this brand before, but it sounded nice. A full sized tube is 1 oz and $32. This guy is .13 oz. You’re supposed to just apply it to wherever your skin is red and irritated after cleansing. Seems easy enough. It’s a gel, so it shouldn’t be too heavy or rich to wear under makeup.

Next up is a sample size of Befine Night Cream. This night cream contains cocoa (yay antioxidants), rice bran, wheat amino acids, and all sorts of fun stuff. It claims to help skin retain moisture, improve circulation of your skin (the natural caffeine in cocoa helps with that), and diminish fine lines and wrinkles. That’s a lot of claims from one little night cream! This tube is .5 oz and retails for $10. A full size is 1.7 oz and retails for $30.

Next up is a little baby sample tube of CellCeuticals NeoCell Micro-Resurfacing Skin Treatment. What caught my eye about this product when I was choosing my samples is that it contains “volcanic micro-minerals”. If you’re a MAC fan you may already be tracking with me – I’m a huge fan of the MAC Volcanic Ash skin care that was (of course) limited edition. So when I read that I jumped at the chance to try it! It’s a very gentle micro exfoliator, similar (maybe) to the volcanic ash scrub? My sample is .33 oz. A full size is 2 oz and retails for $47. Ouch! But if it’s awesome, I think skin care is worth splurging on.

Babor is a line I’d heard of but never tried. As you know I’m super pale, and we’re heading into summer (California, we have summer in May basically…) so I thought I’d give this a shot. It says it’s suitable for face and body, and has a balanced formula that provides UVA and UVB protection. It also says it’s good for sensitive skin, so that’s a big plus. :) It’s not oil free, but since I have dry skin I’m not too concerned. In fact, my main worry with sunscreen is that it’ll be too mattifying. This also doesn’t contain any avobenzene which is awesome since I’m allergic to it! A full size is 200 ml and retails for $32. My sample size is 30 ml.

And then we have Pssssst! the much beloved dry shampoo with the silly name. The can included in this kit is 1.76 oz (the travel friendly size) and retails at Walgreens for $5.99. You can find it cheaper online though (I found it for $2.99 on Amazon). I’m looking forward to trying this, but I don’t have the highest hopes since I haven’t really been a huge dry shampoo fan in the past. Maybe I’m just not using it right but they never seem to give me that voluminous look that others say they get from them. Never to let that stop me from trying another one, I will definitely be giving this a go really soon! And besides, is there anything more hilariously fun than purposefully not washing your hair for the sake of testing a beauty product? NO.

The last sample I am showing is actually the first one I picked. I jumped on this bad boy. Joico K-Pak Reconstructor is said to be the creme de la creme of reconstructing conditioners, and since I’m in dire need of a cut and have pretty gnarly looking ends right now, I am REALLY excited to try it. It wasn’t until after I picked the sample that I realized this thing is huge! This product retails in 2 sizes and this is the smaller of the 2, but it’s not a sample it’s just a small size if that makes sense. It’s 5.1 oz! This product retails for something like $24 – I googled and got a lot of different answers but I’d say they average about that. Ulta carries Joico instore but not online.

Overall if you couldn’t tell, I’m very pleased with my Beauty Army kit this month. The subscription costs just $12 a month, which is well worth it considering the one Joico product is worth twice that or more, plus there’s the other items. At first I was disappointed that there was no makeup offered, but once I sifted through all the choices I was pleased. These are still really great things that I do intend to try/use/review. I hope they offer more makeup in the future. This month they did have one fragrance sample that I recall, but it’s a fragrance I already have (Aquolina Pink Sugar). I also like that if ever I don’t see any samples I want, I can just skip a month.

Oh! And another important thing to note about Beauty Army. Like many sampling services they have you take a style quiz before you pick your samples. The quiz DOES actually have some bearing on the samples you’re offered. You can retake the quiz as many times as you want, so I took it a few times just to see what samples would pop up if I put in different answers. I liked that it wasn’t offering things that are totally wrong for me like oil absorbing products etc.

So you want to join the army? I actually have no idea if they are open for membership at the moment, but if not you can get on a wait list. They take people in the order they get on the list once they open up again, so it’s worth getting on the list if it’s not open. If you’re interested, I’d be thrilled if you’d use my referral link, but I won’t be hurt (I’ll never know!) if you don’t. :)

Huge Mail Haul

Okay, so! I don’t normally do haul posts because usually I find them a bit… excessive? I don’t know. But in this case, I wanted to show you what I’ve got so you can help me decide what to review/talk about first! Make sense? Yes. Hope so. It did to me. Comment!

Some of this was sent to me, some of this I bought. But you know I’ll keep it real whatever my opinion is. :)

I used to hate reviewing fragrances, but somehow I developed a love for them. I guess it’s the poet in me that loves comparing how things smell to feelings, experiences, and tastes. Weird, maybe. But anyway! I will be doing a spring/summer fragrance “top picks” or round up, and thought Coach Poppy Flower would be a great one to try with that in mind.

Also with my spring/summer fragrance lineup in mind I am going to be trying out Marc Jacobs Oh Lola! I got the little sniffer sample in an Ulta catalog and omg I love it so much, so I have a feeling this purty lady is going to make an appearance in that round-up as well. (p.s. I already have 2 MJ perfumes I love, so I’m not all that surprised!)

Hair goodies! This is from TRESemmé’s new Split Remedy line. I have the leave-in cream, the serum, and the spray. I love the aqua accents on the packaging don’t you?! I’m not a regular Tres user so if that’s the norm I’m gonna feel like a dork, but I thought it looked pretty. :)

Butter London goodness! I love me some Butter London! So I’m thrilled that I got the matching polish & lip gloss pairs in Snog and Yummy Mummy. I have an extra Yummy Mummy polish…hmm, is it time for another giveaway?

YES! The MAC Tres Cheek blushes! Well, half of them. From left to right these are Modern Mandarin, Full of Joy, and Immortal Flower. I am soooooo excited about these! Full of Joy looks like Lavender Whip in blush form. Wee!!!

MAC lip liners! I’ve been really into these lately. They make good lipsticks because they last for so long, and then they are fun to use to change or play up your lipsticks/glosses too. It looks like 2 of those are the same but I promise they’re different. These are What Comes Naturally (nude), Lasting Sensation (coral), and Entertain Me (orange). These all came out with the Tour de Fabulous collection I believe.

2 new MAC Lipsticks! Did you know I’m a total MAC lipstick fiend? I don’t like calling myself a “lipstick whore” or whatever…but goodness I love me some lipsticks. Which ones are these? You’ll have to wait and see. Oooh, I know!

And finally my one lone MAC Extra Dimension eye shadow. I wanted to try one before I went nuts and got a bunch. This is Warm Thunder. :)

So there you have it! My HUGE mail haul!! This was an epic mail day as all of this stuff arrived on one day. WOW! So…what do you want to see a review of first?! Comment comment comment!

Small Ulta Haul

Before I get into my haul post, I wanted to alert any fellow Orange County Ulta fans that there is a new location in Rancho Santa Margarita! I didn’t know about it until last night. Not sure when it opened exactly, but if any of you south county beauties don’t want to trek up to Newport or Tustin for your Ulta needs, you don’t have to!

Also, Ulta recently launched their new mobile site. As an iphone addict, I am very happy. I like the new site! What do you think?

And now the haulage..! This was just a little haul. What drew me in was the fact that their (Ulta Brand) Extreme Wear Gel Eyeliner is on sale. It’s normally $9 but right now it’s on sale for $3. I’ve had my eye on the dark green color, Dublin, for a while now. Depending on how I like it, I might go back for another color before the sale ends. If you want an inexpensive green though, Dublin is a gorgeous color! Observe:

But who can go into Ulta and just get one thing? Haha, actually I did have one other thing in mind to pick up:
Okay so a self tanner application mitt isn’t the most exciting thing in the world, but I’d been wanting one before I do any further experiments with self tanners after my last hand-related trauma. ;) I recently got a new tanner from Xen-Tan to try and I hope this mitt will help me out with that. It was only about $5, and it can be washed and used multiple times.
Ah yes! Impulse purchase #1 – OPI Silver Shatter. This polish doesn’t shatter in blocky chunks like the China Glaze crackles do, but more of a shredded, tarnished look. I swatched it over a bare nail, which doesn’t really give you the full effect, but I look forward to playing with it combined with other shades.
And impulse purchase #2 – this cute Butter London duo. For $15 you get their limited edition No More Waity Kaity shade and a mini bottle of their Powder Room acetone-free nail polish remover. The polishes are normally $14 each, so I thought for a buck extra I could get the remover + a polish I wanted anyway. I love Butter London polishes and this purple-griege is gorgeous. So far the only thing I can say about the polish remover is it’s heavily scented. Hea-vi-ly. It smells like baby powder, which to me is a vast improvement on the smell of nail polish remover in general (though I love Zoya Remove+). But if you’re sensitive to scents it’s not for you. Also, if you go to Ulta looking for this set, it’s up by the registers, not with the other nail stuff. ;)
There are a few other low-cost thrills I had meant to look for and completely forgot about (sometimes I just get crazy in stores like Ulta and lose my mind!), so I will probably end up going back again soon haha. If you’d like a review or more info on any of these items let me know!

My IMATS LA 2011 Haul

Alrighty! Let’s get this show on the road. This post was much requested. But, I still feel I have to say… no, this post isn’t meant as bragging. It’s more like…here’s new stuff I have, please let me know what you’d like me to review! Or at least a preview of possible reviews to come. I did get some of this for free, but the vast majority I paid for myself with money I saved up. So! That’s the end of my disclaimer. :) Now the fun stuff…THE HAUL!

I took these pictures kind of on the fly. When I’m reviewing stuff, I’ll take better photos.

Napoleon Perdis was one of the big sponsors of IMATS this year, and there were several gifts from them given out to press and bloggers. I’m really excited to play with these!

As a special gift to bloggers, we each got a Luminous Lip Veil in Rare Opal, which would not photograph very well as it is an iridescent white with pinky shimmer – so gorgeous. These lip glosses also smell really nice. I was told this shade is LE.
The NP booth was also giving out lip glosses to anyone who signed up for their mailing list. My gloss is in reality more peachy and less bright than this photo. I have tried this gloss and it has remarkable staying power and feels nice on the lips.
I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw this beautiful coral kit in the press bag! It contains an eye shadow quad, a blush duo, and a lipgloss. The gorgeous @omgbren was wearing the colors and I just hope they look as good on me as they did on her!
In the spirit of trying new things, I grabbed the Mehron Celebré HD Pro cream foundation (my shade is Light – 1, shocking I know). The coverage with this is ridiculous in a good way. I am excited to try it. Then I stopped by the Gerda Spillmann booth to check out their Bio-Fond cream foundation. The makeup artist there was nice enough to give me one to try and review for you guys. The shade I will be using is called Weekend. I like that.
I could have sworn I told myself I wasn’t getting nail polishes, but that must have been a bad dream because I ended up coming home with six new ones from brands I haven’t tried before – Kleancolor and LA Splash. The Kleancolors were just $2 each! LA Splash were $3 each.
Kleancolor “Silver Star”
Kleancolor “Aurora” – yes those are star-shaped bits of glitter!!!! 
Kleancolor – “Shooting Star”
LA Splash – “Embellished”, “Golden Seahorse” and “Midnight Rain”
From Beauty Treats I grabbed four masks – two Vitamin E masks that contain brightening pearl, and two Strawberry Yogurt masks that have vitamin C.

I got my very first Lise Watier item! This is a lipstick from the Bora Bora collection called Orange Tango. It’s such a gorgeous, complex color that I had difficulty even photographing it, so you’ll just have to wait til the full review. ;)

Some random odds and ends…

TooFaced Primed & Poreless sample (they were giving these out at the TooFaced booth that was part of Naimies)

Senna lip lacquer in Passion (they were giving these out), Crown Brush brush cleaner (won that in the raffle at Koren’s lecture), a sample of Gleam Body Radiance, and an Anastasia clear brow gel (LOVE!) that I bought because all Anastasia was 40% off. It’s a pricey line so I jumped on that one.

Glamcor debuted their new primer at IMATS! I got mine in a gift bag from the Royal & Langnickel event just before the IMATS pro event.

At Inglot I’m so glad Krissy reminded me of the metal mixing palettes. I’d been meaning to pick one up and totally forgot about it, so I grabbed one. It’s kind of a random splurge item. Do I really need it? No. But I feel really cool using it. ;)

That’s all I got from Inglot.


I also picked up another 10-shadow palette, and 9 shadows. Well, 10 shadows, but I was an idiot and I got a shadow I already have, so I will be exchanging that one at the Inglot store as soon as I get around to going over there. Derr.

The pretties! I got mostly neutrals last time, so I wanted to venture into some color. The blues from Inglot are so nice. When I go to exchange the dupe color I bought (a silver) I think I might grab another green. I believe Inglot was 30% off? I don’t have my Inglot pro card yet so that was a good deal. I meant to go back and check out some gel liners and stuff, but their booth was mobbed so I didn’t get a chance. Good thing I live near their Newport Beach store. :)

Okay I’ve saved my favorites for last. I know, I know such amazing goodies already, how could I not be finished yet? Watch.

NEW BRUSHES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Did I not say I was going to brush shop at IMATS? Well these were provided by the amazing, super generous team at Royal & Langnickel.

Hard to tell exactly but this is an angled brow brush with a spoolie at the other end. I love these brushes because spoolies are love. The brush head is tinier than my other brow brush so I look forward to trying it out and seeing if it makes getting my brows to look great even better.

Okay. Here’s where I start getting weepy.

What’s this, you ask? This is a dream. When I got to the Royal & Langnickel event, I got a chance to visit with Kevin James Bennett, who is amazingly sweet. He told me I had to come see something, and showed me this brush set. It’s a beautiful set of brushes designed to spec by Kevin and made by Royal & Langnickel.

These glorious brushes are all synthetic with nickel ferrules and soft-touch handles. Under the soft-touch they are bamboo, meaning these brushes are not only flipping gorgeous they’re all green/sustainable. The brush roll they come with is done in a hot faux chain mail finish. Kevin says his favorite is the pencil brush, which he designed to be the perfect pencil brush that never loses its shape.

As if that weren’t enough? This brush set is limited edition. How limited edition? It was only given to the people at the event. HOW COOL IS THAT? I still get all squealy and giddy just thinking about it. Here is an amazing set of brushes designed by one of my idols, and very limited edition. SQUEE.

But wait, there’s even more…

When the peeps at Royal saw I was buying a kabuki brush, they threw that in as a gift as well! I cannot express how kind these people are!

Whew! So that is my IMATS haulage. I had an amazing time with some really special people, and got a lot of really cool stuff! What do you want to see reviews of? 
Oh and if anyone cares, my manicure (not that you can see it very well) is OPI Ski Teal You Drop with some glitter accent nails that have a coat of LA Splash Midnight Rain (I couldn’t wait til I got home to swatch it). 

Lush Haul & Reviews

I have ordered Lush products from their website, but on Father’s Day I was walking around 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica with my family – where there so happens to be a Lush store. I decided to pop in and check stuff out. There’s a lot of Lush products I had heard about or been curious to try, but since it is so strongly fragranced I was hesitant to jump in without the all-important sniff test beforehand. I couldn’t help but take the opportunity! 
Lush is quite overwhelming in that they have a ton of things, so I asked Twitter for suggestions on what to try out. The recommendations came flooding in! Thank you all so much for your feedback! I ended up hauling a few things:
– Ocean Salt Face & Body Scrub
– Bb Seaweed Fresh Face Mask
– Bubblegum Lip Scrub
– Dragon’s Egg Bath Bomb (I grabbed 2 of these!)
I’ve been loving everything I got! Dragon’s Egg I picked out all on my own just by sniffing all the bath bombs. It’s supposed to be “sherbet scented” but I think it smells like a freshly opened box of fruit loops! It’s very bright and citrusy and I can’t wait to see how it works for me in the bath. It’s said to be a good “wake up” fragrance. Other scents I really liked were Vanilla Fountain and Fizzbanger. I don’t take baths too often (I don’t have a bath tub in my bathroom so if I want to use a tub I have to go upstairs and use mom’s) so I only wanted to grab a couple, but Fizzbanger’s definitely next on my list. 
The Bubblegum lip scrub is possibly my favorite thing I hauled from Lush. I’m not even that into bubblegum, but the moment I smelled the tester I was hooked. It’s not something I typically would gravitate towards, but I am so glad I gave it a shot. It was suggested to me via Twitter, but I’d also seen a few people mention it on Youtube. Guess I’m on the bubblegum bandwagon, because I would definitely recommend it. At first I thought it was kinda expensive at $8.95, but now that I’ve used it and I realize how long this little jar will last me, I’m okay with it. I’d be really excited if they ever came out with this in stick form, but this stuff is great and I love it. Give it a shot! It’s pink! I’d been having a really hard time with chapped lips lately and had finally found a lip balm that helped (plain ole’ medicated chapstick – go fig) and I use that in conjunction with this scrub for perfectly smooth soft lips.
Ocean Salt is a very coarse salt-based scrub that also contains lime and vodka. Hello! My skin can take a lot of exfoliation. I figured if this was too much for my face I could always use it on hands and feet etc. but my face handles this totally fine. It really smells like you are scrubbing your face with a boozy cocktail though, which isn’t for everyone. My mom says it smells like medicine. Yeah well, for some people that is medicine, lol. The first time I used it I thought it made my face feel sticky afterward and I was really bummed that it wasn’t going to work out for me, but I’ve used it a few times since then and didn’t have the sticky feeling. A little bit goes a long way, so I’m glad I only got the small pot. This scrub is wonderful for really giving that “squeaky clean” feeling after a long, sweaty summer day.
I’ll be doing a review of the Dragon’s Egg after I use it, as well as a review of the seaweed mask at a later date.
What are your favs from Lush? What should I try next time?