Sunday, March 23, 2008

Sephora Addict

I can't stop shopping at Sephora. In the last few months I have placed 5 orders and I visited the store yesterday. Initially it was the allure of the 3 free samples that got me in. OMG perfume samples! It was so exciting opening the package -- I blew through the stuff I had ordered (Christmas gifts) to see the little perfume bottles at the bottom. The first three I received were Michael Kors Island Capri, Dior Midnight Poison, and Narciso Rodriguez for Her. I loved them all but Narciso Rodriguez for her really stuck with me. I couldn't stop smelling my own arm. So I ordered it, deciding that it would be my winter signature scent. (My summer one is here.) That's where it all began. Every sample they sent, I fell for it and ordered the product. I'm a marketer's dream.

Over the course of the last three months I have acquired the following:
(images courtesy of

Philosophy The Present
: This little bottle is probably my favorite beauty item. It's clear makeup applied as moisturizer, or over moisturizer. Once you apply, wait two minutes and it gives you sort of this airbrushed look that you can apply makeup over. (You can speed the process by aiming a blowdryer at your face on a cool low setting. This technique also helps set moisturizer before applying makeup.) The only thing is if you do not wait the two full minutes, it can become kind of gunky. I tried to use this under liquid foundation but found that it didn't smooth the way I like. So I skipped that step. The results were amazing! I ended up removing liquid foundation from my morning makeup routine, and my face has a flawless look, and stays non-greasy throughout the day.

DiorShow Mascara
: I got this after researching mascaras to find the 'best' mascara (subjective, but whatev). When I first tried it, I thought it was too clumpy, too tarantula looking. A coworker advised me to give it another try, so I really experimented, using double coats, curling my lashes differently, etc. The result was amazing when I stepped back to really look at my eyelashes. This mascara can extend almost infinitely. It seems if I apply more toward the very end of my lashes the formula really binds to the small hairs making them look longer and longer. So, I love this stuff, even after almost giving it away.

Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler: I have to be honest, there is really no reason why a sane person should pay $18 for an eyelash curler. I added it to my favorites one day, and the next thing I knew it was in my shopping basket, and then I was paying for it! I am sure there are $5 or even $1 eyelash curlers that can do the same thing. But I use it every day, and I was super thrilled to see it mentioned the other day when I re-watched The Devil Wears Prada. I was all, "I have that!" LOL I'm such a dork.

Smashbox PhotoFinish Foundation Primer
: Um, yeah. I wasted 44 bucks on this. I don't know, I thought it was going to be so great after using the sample for a week. But when I got the bottle and used it full force, it felt greasy and gross. It dries soft but I am still greasy throughout the day. Maybe I could revisit this like I did the mascara but it almost feels like smearing baby oil on my face. It even makes a 'greasy noise' that I can't explain in words. Well this serves the same purpose that the Present does, so I'm not too dissappointed. Has anyone else out there tried this and liked it? What am I doing wrong? ...sigh...

Oscar Blandi Dry Shampoo: This comes in an aerosol spray or a powder. I first tried the spray and used the whole bottle already. I use this to eliminate the oily look from my hair when I don't shampoo that day. Hold it as far away as possible and spray, and a fine lemony-smelling mist comes out. When that dries onto your hair you comb it through/shake it out, and it absorbs all the oil from your hair, leaving it clean and shiny (shiny in the good way, not shiny in the gross way). This bottle went kind of quick and I also noticed that it made me a bit flaky (my hair, people, my hair) so when this was gone I invested in the other kind. The saleslady at the Sephora store (which I visited yesterday) told me just to make sure I work it through my hair very thoroughly. People with darker hair colors may have more trouble using the spray, she says. I gotta tell ya, you could achieve the same result with regular old baby powder. Work it through your hair, yes, got it, don't spend $19 on this, yes, got it. It just won't smell lemony-fresh, fine, got it. Save yourself 18 bucks.

Nars Orgasm Blush: If you haven't heard of this by now you should come out from under your rock. I let the experts and beauty bloggers guide me to this one. I can never decide on a shade of blush, and there are so many to choose from on this page, so I just went with their recommendations of the Orgasm shade (besides, it's a really cool name right?). I really like this shade. Also, and we'll see if this comes true, it supposedly lasts a really long time so there is no need to keep replenishing. Unless you listen to the advice to throw away old makeup after three months or whatever. I do not follow that rule. I have makeup that I use every day that has lasted for years. And I hope this does too.

Philosophy The Supernatural
: I left this picture huge so you can see what the fuss is all about. Or lack of fuss, rather. Look how easy it is! It is mineral makeup in a bottle, with the applicator sponge attached to the top of the bottle, with a mirror on the lid. And it smooths my complexion so nicely. You just turn it upside down and shake some powder around and then smooth the thing over your face. That's my kind of makeup! I want one for home, one for the car, one for the office. However, I don't need to reapply that often because this stuff lasts so long. I chose beige as my shade, for medium complexions with no yellow or pink undertones. This is one of my favorite products. So far Philosophy is winning.

I've also purchased assorted hairbrushes, makeup brushes, and gift sets. Pictures below. Click on any of the pics to be taken to their Sephora page.

So as you can see, my addiction is full blown. My Beauty Insider points have rolled over many times. But I wanted to share my experience and knowledge with you so you can make better decisions than I did. :-p I suppose I could attempt to return the stuff that wasn't to my liking, I'll have to investigate that further.

Tell me, what have you purchased from Sephora? What are your favorite beauty products in general?


Londyn said...

My goodness you do buy a lot from Sephora! I love Sephora too - but find it rather expensive.

Thanks for the product tips -- now I will know what is worth my money and what is not!

Psyche said...

Thanks for your insights! Sephora is addictive indeed, so I really appreciate this post.