Posts Tagged ‘Bliss’

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Sunday Splurge: Gift-with-Purchase MANIA!

 If you read my Sunday Splurge last week, you know I’m a whore for free samples, especially deluxe samples.  Every year, the only thing that takes away my sorrow of Halloween being over is the new Gift with Purchase (GwP) offers from all my favorite sites for the holidays. Pathetic? Perhaps. I’m the first to admit it.  The important thing is I’m selective when it comes to choosing my GwP offers.  I follow the GwP Addict blog, so I could go hog wild and opt for every GwP out there… But no! I only use the codes from sites where I can easily get to the required spending amount (for example, it took me about 2 seconds to spend the $135 on Bliss to get the tote) and I know I will actually use the majority of the samples.

Selecting GwP codes is one thing, gaming the system is an art form.  Allow me to explain… In my pursuit for the best GwPs I saw that Sephora was offering “Choose 1-of-4 free “Holiday Prep Kits” with every $25 purchase.  Each kit includes several deluxe samples, and you can choose from Smokey Eye, Flawless Foundation, Beautiful Skin, or Fragrance Sampler.  Since I have what I need to create a smokey eye, I’m married to my foundation, and I only wear Bond No. 9 Scent of Peace, my decision was easy. The Beautiful Skin kit includes deluxe samples from Clarins, DDF, Urban Decay, and many other brands.

Okay, so spending $25 at Sephora is easy. The key is that it’s free shipping after $50.  So I simply divided up my order (totaling $160) into three separate orders. When I got to checkout I got quite the nice surprise. The Beauty Insider 500-point prize was a Fresh gift set! Jackpot! Unfortunately I cannot link you to the gift set since they are already sold out, but I can tell you (and not to rub your face in it) this was the best 500-point gift I’ve ever been offered from Beauty Insider. The kit included a large deluxe sample (at least a month’s worth) of Fresh Black Tea Age Delay Cream (which is rich, yet gentle for sensitive skin), a deluxe sample of the Fresh Soy Face Cleanser (my everyday cleanser), and a mini Fresh Sugar Rose Tinted Lip Treatment SPF 15. Luckily, I had over 2000 Beauty Insider points (yes, a little embarrassing) so I was able to use 1500 to add a Fresh gift set to each of my three orders. Voila! I got three separate boxes from Sephora, each containing a bevy of samples!

Besides Sephora, I wanted to make sure I got my hands on the Bliss Holiday Tote Bag. The samples come in a nice thick nylon tote bag (which I am already using to carry my heels to work), and they include deluxe sizes of brands like Bliss, Go Smile, and DDF.  The thing that got me salivating was the number of samples. Bliss was not skimpy about giving a bunch of great brands in nice deluxe sizes.  You have to spend $135 to get the tote, but since Bliss carries such staple brands like Skinceuticals and Sk-ii, you should have no problem getting to that number.


Okay, now that you’ve got the samples, what are you going to with them?  Watch my video on YouTube, showing you how to best organize and utilize your new spoils. Enjoy!

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Thursday, September 29, 2011

Go Naked! 7 Easy Steps to Perfecting the Perfect Makeup-Free Face!

For those of you who think leaving the house without makeup isn’t viable, I have news for you… There are a few steps you can take to looking gorgeous without a speck of makeup on your face! (You will find these steps are especially vital to leaving the house the morning after too much partying)

Step 1:  Cleanse your face before your shower with a gentle creamy cleanser like Fresh Soy Cleanser and then apply a quick-acting reviving  mask like bliss triple oxygen™ instant energizing mask ($54).  This mask is like a stiff triple shot of espresso for your weary skin, adding back color to cheeks and taking away the grease.  I leave the mask on while I shower to let the steam help the product penetrate.

Step 2:  Swipe a gentle alcohol-free toner-soaked cotton pad over your whole face (recommended toners: to pick up any stubborn debris and balance the PH of your skin.

Step 3: Pat on any morning serums.  Right now I’m using SkinCeuticals Phloretin CF and Hydrating B5 gel.  Then, since I am prone to redness, I apply First Aid Beauty Anti-Redness Serum ($34)  to problem areas.

Step 4: Follow my puffy eyes regimen. Thn pat on a nice morning eye cream like Neocutis Lumiere Bio-Restorative Eye Cream or if you’re feeling a bit Walking Dead under the eyes apply Estee Lauder Idealist Cooling Eye Illuminator.

Step 5: Either apply a nourishing moisturizer with SPF (obviously I use my FAB 5-in-One ) or if you are feeling very blah a nice tinted moisturizer (I like Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20-Oil Free in Bisque).

Step 6: This is the MOST VITAL !!  Primer! Primer! Primer!  I am shocked and dismayed by the volume of ladies I speak to who do not incorporate a primer into their daily ritual. Ladies, not only does a primer make any makeup you put on last all day, but most importantly it hides all those ugly pores and fine lines! I personally swear by Bare Escentuals BareVitamins Prime Time  which is pure vitamins, fills in every imperfection, and also mattifies all those moisturizers and SPF creams I slather on my skin every morning.   Makeup Artist Caitlin Murphy Miles (who also does the best brows I’ve ever seen) works out of the Eva Scrivo Salon, says that Napoleon Perdis Autopilot Skin is the “be all, end all” of primers because of it’s luxurious texture and staying power.

Step 7: Finishing touches! Give your eyelashes a curl (I recommend a heated curler. The cramping style is too aggressive.), comb your eyebrows up, pat a little of the  Estee Lauder Idealist Cooling Eye Illuminator on your cheekbones for definition, and then apply your shade of Fresh Sugar Tinted Balm  (This will always be one of my favorite products; I always have 4 or 5 of them in different bags, coats, and around my desk to ensure I always have one on hand. ).

Now I know this sounds like a lot of steps, so if you’re pressed for time, just moisturize as usual, prime, curl those eyelashes, and put on a nice lip balm.  Done!

Picture via allshewote

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