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Latest Purchases #109 – A Huge Sephora Haul

This is a really long time coming but these are some of my favourite posts to read and watch online so I didn’t want my photos to go to waste.

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This little haul is from October when we went to Boston. I sent Ian back to the hotel and told him I would be some time and spent a lovely hour or so pottering around Sephora, testing things on the back of my hand, blagging some freebies and eventually making a few choice purchases.

First up, a set of the Sephora Cream Lip Stains. These are mini versions of their bestselling matte lip creams and I think you get a really nice selection of shades. I got Always Red, Infinite Rose, Blackberry Sorbet and Cherry Blossom (it’s fairly easy to work out which is which) and I think I have all bases covered from a deep, vampy berry, to a bright red, to a casual nude. I have a few other shades in full size and I really like them. They are slightly drying but the staying power is worth it.

I bought a Sephora Highlight Lowlight Face Contour Duo which is a chunky crayon, in the shade Light. I know contouring seems to have had its day now but, done with a light hand, is a great way to bring some subtle definition to your face…no crazy Kim K sculpting going on here. These shades really suit my skin tone too.

I really wanted to try the CC Cream from IT Cosmetics but they didn’t have my colour. I did however pick up the Bye Bye Under Eye Illumination, a brightening concealer for the under eye area.

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I am yet to try anything by Sunday Riley (it may have something to do with the price of some of the products!) but I picked up a miniature of Martian Mattifying Melting After-Gel Toner. This is an ‘essence’, a product currently taking the beauty world by storm, and looks a great post-cleansing boost which prepares your skin for foundation.

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I was relatively restrained with nail varnish and just picked up one bottle from Formula X. This monochrome nail topper in Chaotic is similar to a L’Oreal one I have almost used up and looks great over a variety of bases.

I bought a set from one of my favourite brands: First Aid Beauty. I have tried all three products inside this set and loved them all. The Ultra Repair Cream is wonderfully hydrating, the Face Cleanser is gentle yet effective in removing make-up and the Facial Radiance Pads tone and brighten with a wash of glycolic acid.

My two final products are both from the ‘Sephora Favourites’ set which I get really excited about! These are boxes filled with a collection of themed products and allow you to try a variety of brands and items for a really good price.

The first box I picked up was called Beauty Sleep and all the products were designed to be applied before bed and left to work their magic overnight. Inside was: Blue Moon Cleansing Balm from Sunday Riley, Sleep Tight Firming Night Balm from Farmacy, Splash Absolute Hydration Replenishing Sleeping Mask from Algenist, a Sephora Pearl Sleeping Mask, Cell Renewal Night Cream from Caudalie, a Wild Rose Advanced Brightening Sleeping Facial by Korres and an Anti-aging Power Eye CreamAnti-aging Power Eye Cream from Origins. Phew!

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I am really excited to try the Sunday Riley balm as well as working my way through the various night creams and masks. Bought individually, these items would cost almost $120 but this box was just $30 which I think is excellent value.

Finally, I bought the Trending: Beauty’s Most Coveted box which contains all the products currently being raved about on beauty blogs and websites. A lot of these products are quite high-end and expensive so this was a great way to try them out for a fraction of the price.

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I received: a nude BeautyBlender, Becca’s Shimmering Skin Perfector in the shade Moonstone, Ka-Brow from Benefit, a Luna Play from Foreo (a facial cleansing brush in case you were wondering!), an Urban Decay lipstick in the shade 714, a GlamGlow SuperMud Clearing Treatment, a NARS Radiant Creamy Concealer in the shade Custard, a bottle of Tarte’s Rainforest of the Seas Marine Boosting 4-in-1 Mist, The Edgiest Kohl Shadowstick in Black Viper by The Estee Edit, another of the Kat Von D Tattoo Liners in Trooper, a Cover FX highlighter stick in the shade Bubbly, and a pot of Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder (plus  powder puff).

The sample sizes are really good and I can’t describe how excited I am to try some of these products! I have been wanting to try the Becca highlighter, the NARS concealer and the Laura Mercier powder for such a long time but never seemed to get around to buying them.

I had no idea what the Luna Play was beforehand but am intrigued to give that a go too as well as trying out the GlamGlow mask which I have only heard amazing things about.

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The only downside to one of these sets is the colour selection. Both the Benefit brow product and the NARS concealer are a touch too dark for me. I can still use them both (maybe with a tan!) but they wouldn’t be my first choice of shades.

So, I did get a bit spend-happy but I am so pleased with everything I bought, especially the two ‘Sephora Favourites’ boxes. Now to start trying everything out and hopefully finding a few new favourites!

Beauty Review – February Birchbox and Mini-Haul

This month’s Birchbox arrived in the coolest marble box – I really like that each month the designs are getting better and better!

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Inside was a nice variety of items, including the first make-up brush I’ve received from Birchbox.

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I received the Tapered Powder Brush from Spectrum, a brightly coloured brush with a long pink handle which I think is perfect for dusting highlighter along the cheekbones. I’m quite loyal to my Real Techniques brushes but this one feels so soft that I will definitely make an exception.

This Ayres Body Butter is beautifully packaged and I think it has quite a masculine look to it. Unfortunately, it is heavily lavender-scented which I’m just not a fan of so I will be passing this one on.

My favourite item this month was definitely the Frat Boy blusher from theBalm. I love the blushers from this brand and had actually decided to use my next lot of Birchbox points to buy this shade! The packaging is gorgeous and I find these blushers great to apply with really good staying power.

A tiny sample next of a moisturiser from BioNike. I hadn’t heard of this brand but this promises to firm, lift and plump the skin – just a shame the tube is so small.

Korres is another brand I really like and their products make quite a regular appearance in Birchboxes. I have only really used shower lotions and body creams so this is my first try of their skincare. I received the 3-in-1 Cleansing Emulsion to be used at night to remove make-up. I love these type of cleansers so will be trialling this soon.

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Birchbox now have their own in-house make-up brand called LOC (or Love of Colour) and I pre-ordered my eyeshadow stick in Perfect Cents, a warm copper shade. I have to say the packaging is a little cheap and flimsy and I’m not that impressed with the product either. It contains a lot of glitter and shimmer and although it blends nicely, it creases easily and doesn’t have the promised 11-hour longevity. I think I may use this as an eyeliner to give a little sparkle rather than across my lids.

Finally, as well as my monthly box, I had racked up enough points to add a few additional items to my order.

I bought a full-sized version of the Liz Earle Skin Tonic, a refreshing toner that I love to use after cleansing.

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I also repurchased a Laqa&Co Lip Lube (hate the name of that!) in the shade Menatour. I don’t own any other purple shades but the blue tones in this one really suit my skin tone and I have almost finished my other crayon.

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I was looking for something extra to take me over the free delivery cost so added a bag of white chia seeds to my basket. I would have bought these anyway at the supermarket and I had only tried the black seeds before so decided to give these white ones a try.

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Overall, a good box this month and I love the fact that my final three items were all freebies after storing up my Birchbox points! x