The first Essence item I bought was a Nude Pencil Eyeliner online from Ulta.com (back when they used to accept my online credit card, around 2008 or 2009).
Many years later, I spotted Essence locally at Carrefour (spotted here).
In 2017 I picked up a selection of products from the Essence counter at Carrefour (haulage here).
Then again in January 2019 where I fell in love with one of their Mascaras (here) and repurchased it again on July 2019 (here).
Rather than having to rely on local vendors (because who knew how old the stuff they were selling even was), on February 5th 2020, I placed my first online order directly with Essence.
The website was fairly simple to navigate. Unfortunately, they didn’t have a wide variety of products and shade colors to choose from.
That said, I was only interested in repurchasing my favorite Mascara. The rest was purchased just to test out the brand.
All their products were Cruelty Free and Vegan and Paraben Free and oddly enough, some were Gluten Free (not joking).
The total was $40.32 with tax (after I’d used a $10 off coupon code).
Switch on electric summer feels! New naturally charged lip and eye shadows serve a wonderstruck summer of bronzing.
I had to get something from the Electric Wonder Collection, if for the pretty packaging alone!
ELF were having a 50% off Sale, but only on select items (mostly Tools and Brushes and some of their less expensive products).
As usual, none of the newer items were included. So, I used up my Beauty Reward Points (every $1 spent at ELF = 1 Beauty Point) to activate the “Choose Your Own Sale Day” (15% – 25% off) option. That way, I could purchase the other items I wanted (that had not been included in the 50% off Sale) at a discounted price too! I also used up my Beauty Reward Points to redeem several items (got them for free).
I listed both the original price and the reduced price, next to each item and in parenthesis listed whether the item was part of the 50% off Sale or if I had used “Beauty Points” (ELF’s Loyalty Program). Instead of being $175 the total was $100.75 (well, $109.69 with tax) which was KD 30 (about KD 33 with tax).
Shortly after I placed this order, ELF released a whole slew of new products. So, it’s safe to assume that every time they had a 50% Sale, they were most probably going to be releasing new stuff, soon after.
While browsing through the New Arrivals section up on Nordstrom, I spotted an exciting new version of my beloved Light Blue called Light Blue Sun. It listed Coconut Water (which I adore in most forms) in the fragrance notes! I mean…c’mon, Light Blue + Coconut Water just sounded awesome! So, despite my luck (or lack-thereof) with purchasing perfumes before actually smelling them, this was yet another blind-buy lol Since I was going to have to pay extortionate shipping fees regardless, I figured I might as well purchase a few more items, to even out the shipping cost (I mathed).
I picked up something from the Too Faced collab with Erika Jayne and to qualify for the Too Faced Gift with Purchase also purchased a Too Faced Mascara (travel size). Lastly, since I’d actually sampled Mon Paris earlier (here) and over time, grew to enjoy the scent, I sprung for the YSL Mon Paris Eau de Parfum Set (3oz/90mL + 1oz/30mL).
Since the total for everything was more than $100 I ended up qualifying for both the April Skincare Sample Pack (here) and April Fragrance Sample Pack (here) and the April Bonus Gift (here) and got to pick out 3 samples for free.
– Dolce & Gabbana Light Blue Sun Eau de Toilette (Limited Edition)
– Too Faced x Erika Jayne Pat The Pu$$ Kissable Body Shimmer (Limited Edition)
– Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara (travel size)
– Yves Saint Laurent Mon Paris Eau de Parfum Set
ELF (Eyes Lips Face) were having a 20% off $20 and 30% off $30 and 40% off $40 and 50% off $50 promo going on (the promo excluded the newest of new releases though), towards the end of November and start of December. I jumped on that deal and ordered a few things that based on my previous experience, probably wouldn’t survive shipping during the Summer (it can get up to 50 Celsius/131 Fahrenheit over here).
Despite being billed for them and also redeeming my “Beauty Points” (part of ELF’s loyalty program) several items were missing from my order. I didn’t bother contacting ELF though, because even if they did ship the missing items separately, the shipping itself would cost more than the actual items. It just wasn’t cost effective.
Regardless, I managed to get my hands on some things that I’ve been meaning to purchase for a good long while now, but was holding back because of the price. I got some Skincare and Foundation (in several shades), Brow Stuff (in several shades), a few Lip Things and even fewer Makeup Brushes and a ton of Blushes and Bronzers and Highlights all for half price! The total was $132 which is slightly more than I would’ve preferred to have spent, but I also feel like I saved more in the long run (logic)! I kinda’ went crazy (which is usually the case when ELF knocks their prices down to half off), but 50% off was just too good to pass up!
For the sake of convenience (it’s just easier for me), I decided to split up my Sephora Haul into 2 posts. This one will feature all the stuff that came in the Holiday Gift Box and the next post will feature stuff I actually payed for at Sephora.
If you don’t feel like reading, you can just click the link and scroll all the way down to see the Black Card Gift and Gold Card Gift on display in-store (here) or the very bottom of this post to get a closer look at the Black Card Gift (12pc deluxe samples).
Sephora Black Card Festive Gift Box
Sephora Denim Tote Bag
Sephora Magical Gifts Brochure
Sephora Star Phone Ring
When I payed for my stuff at the check-out counter at Sephora, I was delightfully surprised when the woman behind the cash register pulled out a “Festive Gift Box” and placed it in my shopping bag, alongside the rest of my stuff!
I really wish I’d gotten this post up sooner (like, December), but you know… life. In this post, I’ll be going over some New Items, Skincare, Hair Care, Perfume, cute stuff at the “Aisle of Doom“, the Brand Gift of the month, and most importantly, a few of the discounted items during “Beauty Friday” (Sephora’s version of Black Friday)! I’ll start by going over all the Sephora Holiday Sets.
Sephora had released a whole slew of Gift Sets for the Holidays! You could differentiate them by their lovely navy blue packaging (to mimic the night sky) with a golden moon and stars scattered all over them! Around every corner there was a different Holiday Display. At first, it was a bit overwhelming, but I quickly realized it was mostly the same stuff, except rearranged differently. I tried to take pictures of as many of them as I could. I believe I managed to get all of them (sorry in advance for the glare in some of the photos!)
This (shown above) was literally on the opposite side of the Too Faced Counter. All the other Holiday Displays scattered throughout Sephora featured several of the same products, which led me to believe that this was the main display.
(Photo nicked off the Mishref Fair Grounds Website).
I try to make it a point to visit the Perfume & Makeup Exhibition at least once a year. The Perfume & Cosmetics Exhibition takes place twice a year (March and then again in Oct-Nov) in Hall 5 and Hall 6 and Hall 8 at Mishref Fair Grounds. As you can see, the Halls are huge! They’ve always got something or other going on there (sometimes simultaneously), year-round! This year, I noticed that they had strung up pretty fairy lights and arranged a seating area somewhere outside, with a ton of trendy pop-ups in cute little shacks that were catering the event, on either side of the seating area! I actually took a handful of pics, but people’s faces were on full display so I can’t show ’em (privacy blah blah blah consent blah blah blah).
Unfortunately, the majority of the halls participating in the Perfume & Cosmetics Exhibition mainly feature Oud and Teeb (Arab Fragrances), with only a smaller portion of booths featuring “French Perfumes” and an even smaller portion featuring Makeup. Heck, one of the Halls (I wanna’ say Hall 7) was reserved solely and entirely for Boutiqaat (at one point, I saw a tumbleweed roll by).
I’ve been going to the Perfume & Makeup Exhibition for
years decades! In fact, even before I used to go there, my mom would get me a Lancome Mascara Gift Set when I was a teen (drugstore brands weren’t as readily available in Kuwait back then). Even just 8 years back, Victoria’s Secret used to participate (here) as did Sephora (here). It’s also where I first spotted China Glaze (here) and Lush (here). Now, it’s so very different (not in a good way) from what it once was…
I popped in to Boots in the hopes of picking up the St. Tropez Self Tan “Purity” Bronzing Water Mousse (spotted earlier, here). Unfortunately, they were out of stock (I knew I should’ve purchased it, at the time). I believe they had a “15% off” Gosh Makeup, whereas all the other makeup brands were “25% off”. They also had a “Buy One Get One Free” promo on select brands. As per usual, the “Buy One Get One Free” did not extend to St. Tropez or K-Beauty (typical). Still, since I was there, I figured I might as well make the most of it. I picked up x2 Smokey Eye Brushes (one ended up being free) and a pair of Tweezers (to apply falsies) and repurchased that gorgeous Serum Mascara! The sales assistant also ended up tossing in a Bronzer for free (which was nice of her). Next time I see anything remotely interesting at Boots, I’m just going to go ahead and purchase it (then and there)! This is my millionth time returning to the same branch to buy the St. Tropez Bronzing Water and my millionth time not being able to find it lol