Thursday, July 5, 2012

June Favorites, Acquisitions, and Empties

Well, this is a few days late, but considering how frighteningly busy I've been, I'm just glad I got it done before, say, August. More posts to come!

I'm going to try to keep my comments under 140 characters, so it doesn't end up being so horribly long. Minus the product names, of course. Items marked with a * were used until empty, and those marked with ** were thrown out due to inadequate performance.
Grocery Outlet and Fred Meyer:
Epielle Cucumber Cleansing Cloths: Not very moist, bit of film left behind. Try normal kind next time instead. Two cloths remove bulk of my makeup, though I always wash after.
Sally Hansen Nail Prisms: Backup of Mandarin Garnet, great new-to-me Golden Tourmaline. Saving the rest to give away.
Biotin: $2.50 for 60! Though only 1000 mg, not 5000. Not sure if it's made a difference yet, but I'll update in a month.
Essence Nail Art Cracking Top Coat Black: Bought to use in nail polish jewelry. Works like a charm!

Surrender to Chance order:
Chanel Bois des Iles, No. 19, Cristalle, Eau de Cologne, 31 Rue Cambon; Parfums de Nicolaï Number One, Le Temps d'une Fête; Piguet Fracas, Annick Goutal Eau d'Hadrien, Hermès Eau des Merveilles: See my Fragrance Fridays for notes on these.
Sephora order:
Dior Eau Sauvage: Ordered when I had a gift card and 15% off. I loooove it. Quintessential summer perfume!
Samples: Origins Plantscription Anti-Aging Eye Cream (foisted off on my mother), Kate Somerville Oil-Free Moisturizer* (worked fine for me, fast-absorbing etc., but was not noticeably different from my Amber Cream), Make Up For Ever Rouge Artist Natural N9* and N18** (Sheer semi-moisturizing lipsticks. Neither colors I would choose, but due to sheerness workable for me. Not very long-lasting, though) and Rouge Artist Intense 22 and 43 (as-yet untested). See naturalNchicmakeup's swatches here.
NYX Taupe blush: MM recommended this as a contour product. Works great! Love that it's grey-based, not brown; better for my cool skin. Full review to come.

Gillette Sensitive Skin Men's Shaving Gel: Bought because all the women's smelled like plastic fruit. Plus, this was cheaper and bigger. Works fine.
Sonia Kashuk Contour Brush: Use with NYX Taupe to contour. Great brush, very affordable, but takes forever to dry after washing. Overall highly recommended.

Pacifica Tahitian Gardenia soap: Smells great.

Stridex Maximum Strength Pads: Bought this in a pique of anger at the coast, as I'd forgotten to bring any of my acne stuff with us and my skin has been acting up something crazy. I've used Stridex in the past (it's been years, and I have no idea if it was this same kind), so I expected it to be fine, but nope: gave me tiny little bumps all over my face. What a disaster. This is the reason for the lack of full-face photos, just so's you know––my face hates me right now. But I'm on some prescription stuff, and goddamnit it had better work (I hate having to wait 2 months to see results, though! waaah). (Sorry, couldn't keep that to 140 characters.)

NYC Blushable Creme Sticks in Urban Spice and Big Apple Blush: Briefly reviewed and swatched here. Well worth the buck I paid.
Target Beauty Bag! Including samples of:
Aveeno Living Color shampoo** and conditioner**: Decently foamy shampoo, slimy and completely insufficient conditioner for my tangle-prone hair. Smelled nice. Threw out after 1 use.
Garnier Color Shield shampoo** and conditioner**: Worked similarly to Aveeno, though conditioner less slimy. Smelled like synthetic strawberries. Threw out after 1 use.
Tresemme Split Remedy shampoo* and conditioner**Shampoo is nice and foamy, conditioner sucks, though smell is inoffensive. Used up shampoo, threw out conditioner.
Neutrogena Ultra-Sheer Dry Touch Sunblock SPF 70: Reviewed SPF 45 version briefly here. Keeping this in my bag for reapplying.
Revlon Colorburst Lip Butter in Peach Parfait**: Love the lip butters, and the base color of this, pretty peachy pink, but big silver sparkles are a no-go.

Aedes order:
Frederic Malle Noir Epices, Lys Mediterranee, By Kilian Incense Oud, Amouage Memoir, Jubilation 25, Serge Lutens A La Nuit, Datura Noir: See Fragrance Fridays.

Wet N Wild Black Creme and Nobi Crack Nail Lacquer in some yellow shimmer color: My old Black Creme dried out (sigh) so forked over whole $0.99 for new one. Hoped yellow crackle would be good for jewelry; so far not sure.

I also purchased 50 plastic atomizers from Lotioncrafter, but I made the executive decision not to include those in my beauty budget, just because I can. Gave away my glass atomizers, so maybe that helps justify it?

Zoya Carly, Kimber, and Wednesday: Bought during 3 for $15 sale. Love them all. Full reviews to come.

Pacifica Tahitian Gardenia body butter: Reviewed here. Awesome stuff, I only wish it were cheaper.

Philosophy Purity Made Simple cleanser: HG (or close to it) cleanser. Still have half of a 3 oz bottle left, but will need to re-buy soon.

Murad Mattifier SPF 15: Meh. Seemed to work okay, but also may have broken me out. Threw out the leftovers after 2 uses.

Sally Beauty 100% Acetone: Bought this gigantic bottle a few months ago, and transferred it to an old Rite Aid polish bottle because the opening of this one was too wide for my cotton balls. Worked ok, still prefer convenience of smaller bottles––less spilling.

Last month, I laid out some guidelines for myself for this month. Let's see how I did...
1) $120 budget. Well, according to Mint, I spent $141 on beauty purchases in June. Whoops. In my defense, school finished mid-June, which meant I spent the first half of the month in a constant state of stress, and once I got finished with my work definitely felt I deserved some beauty rewards, budget be damned. But still. Whoops. As far as my spending plans for the other summer months go, I have a job this summer, so I feel less of a financial pressure to stick to my budget. That being said, I am going to stick to the $120 budget from last month rather than the $100 I had planned, not least because this is my birthday month and I want some wiggle room!
2) Buy no more than 2 non-staple beauty items. Well...this did not go so well. If I disregard the nail polish, I only went over by 2, the Blushable Creme Sticks. I'll address the nail polishes in #5.
3) Place no more than 1 "indie" order: Didn't purchase any last month! Whoo!
4) Strict no-buys on lippies, body butter, mascara, blush, and eyeshadow: SUCCESS! I suspect I'll break the lippies one this month, because lippies are my weakness and have I mentioned it's my birthday month?
5) Conditional no-buys: no nail polishes until I cull my stash: I did this! I have ~15 set aside in a box to be donated. Which is why I bought nail polish last month (also, who can resist 3 for $15 Zoyas?). No soap or shower gels until I use up the ones I have: Indeed! I used up my Pacifica Tibetan Mountain Temple soap (couldn't really take a picture of it, since as a bar of soap, "empty" is equivalent to "invisible") and bought the Tahitian Gardenia to replace it. Whee! No base or top coats until I use up one of each: Didn't buy any last month, though I inaugurated July with Sally Hansen Nailgrowth Miracle and Insta-Dri, since my old ones had gotten too thick.

Alright, so I guess I didn't do too badly. The guidelines for July, modified in part to account for my birthday excesses:
1) $120 limit. Try and stick to it, Ames. (Any money or gift cards I get will not go towards this limit, so that should let me have some flexibility/beauty binges.)
2) Buy no more than 2 non-staple, non-nail items.
3) No more than 1 "indie" order, 1 perfume samples order (Surrender to Chance or The Perfumed Court), and 1 Aedes order.
4) No-buys continue, with the exception of lippies, which I will allow myself to buy one of. Choose wisely. Add in no base or top coats here, too.
5) No polishes unless they're a fantastic deal (as Zoya was last month) or truly awe-inspiring and limited edition, no soap or shower gels.

Lastly, favorites for June: Illamasqua Tweak, Le Métier de Beauté Corinthian, and Revlon Sweet Tart. And oodles of perfume, as usual! 
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