Archive for October, 2008

It’s On!!! Sephora Friends & Family 2008 That Is!

October 31, 2008

So many of you had e-mailed me with concerns over what was going on with Sephora’s F&F this year. There were whispers that the round of various discount codes Sephora e-mailed out a week or so back may have been to replace the F&F event, or that it would only be open to “true” F&F. Well guess who got an e-mail forwarded to her with the F&F code? None other than little old me!

Can’t wait until the F&F to make that purchase? Spend $25 and enter code BEAUTYBOX at checkout to get a mini train case packed full of samples for free!

My F&F list is rather long and protracted, but if I had money to burn I’d be getting this:

Make Up Forever Dany Sanz Limited Edition Palette
($640 Value for $390)

What it is: A professional palette created and signed by Dany Sanz, Creator and Artistic Director of Make Up For Ever.

What it does: Make Up For Ever Dany Sanz Limited Edition Palette is a blockbuster-sized palette containing 30 eyeshadows and blushes picked out by Dany Sanz herself. The 30 shades of long-lasting, high-pigmented eyeshadows and blushes allow you to create every look in the book.

What else you need to know: This Sephora-exclusive, limited-edition palette contains 20 eyeshadows and blushes and 10 diamond shadows. The eyeshadows/blushes come in three different finishes: matte, satiny, and iridescent. There’s only 100 available so make your pretty purchase fast!

What’s on your Sephora F&F list?

Dior Vernis in Black Sequins 905: Review and Photos

October 30, 2008
Dior Vernis in Black Sequins ($19)

What it is: A black nail lacquer with silver flecks. Limited edition and only at Sephora!

What it does:
Dior Vernis in Black Sequins gives nails a celestial shimmer. The raven black lacquer contains silver flecks that make your nails looks like a starry night—they glitter. Dior’s fast-drying, diamond-hard, chip-resistant formula makes sure this limited-edition varnish lasts.

Close-Up of Dior Black Sequins

I hadn’t even noticed Dior’s Black Sequins up on the Sephora site until a couple of readers requested that review it if I had the chance, but since I’m always up for testing out pretty black nailpolishes I was only too happy to oblige! I checked multiple Sephora stores in the city and they were all sold out of this polish (so get on it if you want since it is limited!) so I had to resort to ordering online!

Black Sequins is a true black nail laquer with tons of tiny little silver flecks interspersed throughout. The effect really is like that of a starry night–well if starry nights were actually visible in my area. Since the flecks aren’t chunky at all the overall effect is subtle and definitely more eye-catching in brighter lighting than it is in a dim room, but all in all I love it! The finish isn’t completely smooth due to the glitter, but it’s absolutely and positively not the chunky glittery feeling you get from a lot of glitter polishes. While I don’t get much use out of my Chanel Black Satin, I know this will be gone before I know it!

As for the lasting power, well I’ve only had this on my nails for a night or so, but having been a fan of Dior polishes for well over 10 years I can attest to their great quality. They dry super quickly, have great shine, and best of all are the longest lasting polishes I’ve ever tried. I always manage to chip my manicures in a day or two with other polishes (Essie, Chanel, OPI, etc.) but my Dior polishes last and last.

Okay onto the photos! I did my nails last night in the dark so please excuse the stray marks and messiness (and the not so great photos). I’ll be fixing it up later today!

Click the photos to enlarge and check out the shimmer!

Like I mentioned above this polish is limited edition and seems to be selling out quickly so head on over to Sephora and check it out for yourself if you’re interested!

Related Posts:
Click here to see a nailpolish which creates gorgeous starbursts on your nails as if by magic!

Christmas in October Courtesy of Nicole <3

October 30, 2008

Nicole surprised me with this absolutely AMAZING Christmas package in October!! Of course the postman happened to come just as I had gotten out of the shower, so I made a mad dash for the door with my towel still in my hair and some random clothes I managed to grab off the floor.

Thank you sososososososo much Nicole!!!!! You know me so well and everything is exactly what I would’ve picked out for myself if I weren’t on a ban! ❤ Everything will be loved and put to good use I promise!

So what did Santa bring my this Christmas? Everything!
~Caron powder in Venitienne, Caron swandown powder puff in pink, Caron loose powder compact
~Cle de Peau Extra Silky Lipstick in Shade 108
~MAC Dazzleglass in Like Venus
~L’oreal Double Extend Beauty Tubes mascara
~And she made me some great samples of Caron Radieuse Powder, La Prairie Loose Powder, Sisley Tropical Resins Complex, and Peter Thomas Roth Microdermabrasion
~And she also sent me some great samples including a sheet mask, eye gel, a bunch of great Sisley stuff (I’ll be trying that concealer today!) and a Lierac product that will hopefully be that magical cure for redness I’ve been looking for!

Thanks again Nicole! I was so touched by your thoughtfulness and how sweet you are to have done all of this for me. ❤

Sasa Haul!

October 30, 2008

Nothing incredibly interesting, but I did get the last of Sasa’s stock of Clear & Clear grapefruit-scented oil blotting sheets (these are great and so hard to come by in the US!) and a Heroine mascara which I have yet to give a proper try.

Of course the mascara will join the series at some point–hopefully soon!

Etude House Speedy Total Mineral Base Review

October 29, 2008

Unfortunately there are no swatches or product shots of this one, since I had a few samples of Etude House’s Speedy Total Mineral Base from back when my cousin was kind of enough to buy me their Pore Erasing Peach Base which are now long gone. But I still felt the need to review it as I’ve been thinking about it often lately and it really was great stuff!

What it does: Etude House’s Speedy Total Mineral Base is basically supposed to be your sun protection, primer, concealer, and foundation all in one handy little product. It’s made with deep sea water complexes and mineral powder and contains SPF 41, making it an all-around great product. The texture was light and easily blendable and didn’t have that greasy sunblock feel that I dislike so much, and provided enough coverage (similar to a light foundation or a tinted moisturizer) that I didn’t feel the need to wear foundation.

The bad: It doesn’t really do much in the way of oil-absorbing, and so I needed to set this with a loose powder, but other than that the Speedy Total Mineral Base was pretty great. It’s cheap (in Korea), effective, and easily portable. But for those of you who aren’t the wide-ranging shades of super pale or pale (LOL), this probably won’t work for you since it only comes in two shades.

But of course the tragedy is that this isn’t available in the US and my only route is to purchase through ebay, where it’s ridiculously marked up *sigh*. I guess I can live without it, but I want it! I may just need to wait until my next Korea trip though since I can’t even remember what shade I was in this, not that there’s all that much guessing involved with the two shades it comes in.

ABS’s Five: My Fragrance Wishlist

October 29, 2008

So my usual five has turned into seven, but here are the fragrances currently on my wishlist! Don’t get me wrong I still love my Marc Jacobs Daisy (it’s my go-to fragrance and always brings a smile to my face) and Burberry Summer–I just want these too!

Bond No. 9 The Scent of Peace
($470 for Swarovski version, $40-$195 for regular)

Do you ever grab one of those fragrance strips from the fragrance people at department stores because you just don’t have the energy to say no yet again? Well that’s what happened with A Scent of Peace and I literally had to backtrack to ask her what this wonderful fragrance was, I loved it so much! A melange of grapefruit, black currant, and lily of the valley, The Scent of Peace was a winner in the top 5 finalists for the 2007 Fragrance of the Year FiFi Award for Women’s Nouveau Niche Category.

Better yet, Seeds of Peace, an organization dedicated to empowering young leaders from regios of conflict with teh leadership skills required to advance reconciliation and coexistence, receives a portion of the sales from every bottle sold.

Hanae Mori Paris ‘Butterly’ Eau de Parum

The notes in this fragrance are Strawberries, Bilberries, Black Currant, Bulgarian Rose, Jasmine, Ylang-Ylang, Sandalwood, Almond, Praline. This has been a long-time favorites of mine but for some reason I’ve just never been able to bring myself to purchase it. And it even comes in deoderant form!

Annick Goutal ‘Petite Cherie’ Eau de Parum
($230 for Limited Edition bottle, regular for $95-$160)

Petite Cherie is a fresh combination of fruity and floral ingredients including peach, musk rose, pear, fresh cut grass and vanilla. To me the peach and pear notes predominate the opening spray, making for a deliciously fresh and fruity fragrance, with the musk appearing only in the drydown. To be honest I didn’t like Petite Cherie much at first, but it slowly grew on me and now I absolutely love it!

Lavanila Vanilla Grapefruit

Lavanila fragrances have intrigued me thanks to their “good for you ingredients” of 30 essential vitamins and minerals and 19 amino acids, and the fact that Vanilla Grapefruit smells delicious doesn’t hurt either. The warm vanilla scent is just slightly tinged with the fruitiness of grapefruit, meaning you get all of the sweetness without any unpleasant tartness.

Salvatore Ferragamo ‘Incanto Shine’ Eau de Parum

I know that a lot of people aren’t terribly fond of this fragrance, but I absolutely love it and it’s actually one of my favorites. It contains notes of Pineapple, Passion Fruit, Freesia, Peach, Cedarwood, and Amber–and while all that fruitiness is probably just too much for some, I say bring it on! To me this smells like a gorgeous spring day.

Viktor & Rolf ‘Flowerbomb’ Eau de Parum
($135 for LE bottle)

Top notes: Tea and bergamot. Middle notes: Sambac jasmine, orchid, freesia, rose. Base note: Patchouli. Flowerbomb is a deliciously heady sweet smelling fragrance that’s perfect for winter. This has been on my wishlist for YEARS but again I can never quite bring myself to get it–although I do now have a mini and the hair mist to tide me over thanks to a sweet somebody!
Versace Signature Eau de Parum

This was another one of those “wow what is that?” department store moments for me. Versace signature is a floral bouquet emphasized by jasmine and azalea and musk, wrapped by kashmir wood and Moroccan cedar wood.

Bond No. 9 Chinatown and Bleecker Street Holiday Fragrance Reviews

October 29, 2008

I just recently discovered that for $15 (including shipping) you can order a set of 6 beautifully wrapped Bond No. 9 samples to test out for yourself. Needless to say I’ll be trying pretty much everything.

So while all of the fragrances that were “crystallized” for Bond No. 9’s Holiday release are a part of their permanent collection, I thought I’d review two for you.

Chinatown: Bond No. 9 fittingly decked out my favorite perfume out of the Swarovski All Stars in fuchsia/ruby colored rhinestones. Yep you guessed it–Chinatown! The notes in Chinatown are peach, gardenia, tuberose, and sandalwood and they come together to form a masterpiece of a fragrance. It’s sweet yet spicy, bold yet elegant. The top note of peach blossoms is fleeting, drying down to a vanilla-y incense-y scent. The staying power isn’t amazing, but nevertheless it’s a wonderful fragrance.

Bleecker Street: Bleecker Street, while an interesting fragrance, really isn’t one of my favorites. I think that I’d prefer to smell this on a man–the mingling of violet leaf, cassis, jasmine, cinnamon, and oakmoss create a rather strong fresh green/herbal scent that doesn’t do so well with my body chemistry. The opening note is intensely green and almost tart, but the dry down is warm and musky. I’m off to search for a man to try this out on lol!

A Sneak Peek at Holiday ’08 at Bond No. 9: Pure Shiny Indulgence

October 28, 2008

Holiday 2008 at Bond No. 9 goes from understated to shamelessly luxurious. Check out your own little sneak peek at these stunning crystallized flacons! And click HERE for even more crystallized Bond No. 9 fragrances.

Bleecker Street Bejeweled ($395)

Bond No. 9 chose Bleecker Street (a gourmand oriental mingling of patchouli, cassis, caramel, woods, and musk) to receive its annual “Swarovski treatment,” and what a treatment it is! Okay so admittedly the bottle reminds me a bit of a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, but only in the best possible way of course!
The limited-edition 100ml lime green-chartreuse-amethyst-gold starburst watercolor flacon is studded back and front with a checkerboard pattern of matching crystals, with an extra large crystal front and center for good measure. The price for all this beauty? $395.

The Swarovski All-Stars ($650)

Bond No. 9 has embellished three of their most coveted scents with Swarovski crystals–5,000 of them per 50ml bottle to be precise! Chelsea Flower (peonies-magnolia-rose) is decked with emerald-colored stons, Eau de New York (citruses-cyclamen-jasmine-vetiver) is studded with diamond-colored aurora borealis stones, and Chinatown (peach-gardenia-tuberose-sandalwood) features ruby-colored stones. I’m thinking somebody needs to these for me as a holiday gift–after all they go so well with my clutch!

Bond No. 9 Crystallized Amphora ($3,500)

And finally we get to the show-stopper of the holiday collection-the item that’s at the top of my “I must have it!!” list! It’s none other than Bond No. 9’s super-sized 42 oz amphora vitrine, breathtakingly covered with 16,500 hand-applied platinum Swarovski stones. And the bottle top? An elliptical mirror with honeycomb base. Your $3,500 gets you this heart-wrenchingly gorgeous amphora filled with your choice of the 32 Bond No. 9 scents. My choice? The Scent of Peace. And all this beauty comes in a white patent leather gift case, also adorned with crystals. If it’s wrong to want to get this then I don’t want to be right!

Benefit’s New Moisturizing ‘Woman Seeking Toner’: Available for a Limited Time

October 28, 2008

Woman Seeking Toner ($32)

This is sure to be your best-kept beauty secret. Much more than a simple toner, this delicate toning lotion hydrates, revitalizes & smooths your complexion. Leaves your skin feeling refreshed & smooth in seconds.

Tips and tricks: After cleansing, apply to your face & neck-colleté with a cotton pad. For maximum revitalizing effect, tap skin lightly with fingers to help lotion absorb. Do not rinse off. Follow with moisturizer. Use morning & evening.

If Benefit’s new moisturizing, revitalizing, and smoothing toning lotion can really deliver on its claims, it sounds pretty wonderful to me! Plus everyone knows I’m a sucker for pink products.

While $32 is a bit pricey for a Benefit toner, I’m mighty tempted to try this since the colder weather has been sucking my skin dry! But I’m wondering why the “limited time only” deal with this–perhaps they’re just testing out the waters before an official launch?


Disney for Paul & Joe Collection Finally Available Stateside…Sort of

October 27, 2008
Photo Source

This collection actually launched in Japan awhile back, but the people at Bergdorf Goodman (one of the only places that I’ve seen carrying this line after Sephora stopped doing so) have finally decided to grace us with the cuteness that is Paul & Joe’s Disney collection–but on a limited basis!

So here’s the deal. If you want anything from this collection, you need to call the Paul & Joe counter at Bergdorf Goodman and pre-order the items, as quantities are extremely limited.

I spoke to Kristy from the Paul & Joe counter earlier this morning and pre-ordered my items (212-872-2759) and you should do the same! Their shipment should arrive November 8th or so, but she recommended calling by the end of this week as everything should be sold out by then.

Face Colors (2 shades: pink (Flower) and peach (Bambi)): $36 each
Protective Hand Cream: $24
Milky Lip Treatment: $18

But if you really can’t makeup your mind and want to wait until you’ve seen my haul (LOL) then they should be getting in one more shipment mid November.

Now you’ll just have to wait a few weeks to see what I ended up with!

What will you be getting? Don’t tell my I’m the only one who couldn’t resist this packaging!

Related Posts:
Read my review of Paul & Joe’s Moisturizing Compact Foundation here.