Value: Ulta Beauty Break 11/16/16

Featuring Marc Jacobs Daisy. This week had a lower buy-in than usual at $40, with a corresponding lower value.

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  • Daisy Eau de Toilette Mini, 0.13 oz @ $100/3.4 oz = $3.82 or @ $27/0.24 oz = $14.63
  • Daisy Eau So Fresh Mini, 0.13 oz @ $100/3.4 oz = $3.82 or @ $27/0.24 oz = $14.63
  • Daisy Eau de Toilette Mini Rollerball, 0.10 oz @ $100/3.4 oz = $2.94 or @ $27/0.24 oz = $11.25

Total value: $10.59 to $40.51

Marc Jacobs coffrets with four of the mini bottles retail for around $50; I don’t think I’ve seen the mini rollerballs sold anywhere but if you estimate the price based on $12.50/0.13 oz that would be $9.62 for a total value of $34.62. The value of this set really comes down to whether you care about the perfume itself, in which case this is a pretty lousy GWP for a $40 buy-in, or if you like the little bottles. Personally, I’m a sucker for perfume minis because I think they’re just so cute.

9/21/16 featuring Becca: minimum spend $50, value $45.40 to $46.84
9/28/16 featuring Philosophy: minimum spend $50, value $41.12 to $46.95
10/05/16 featuring Benefit: minimum spend $50, value $31.60 to $32.74 + cosmetic bag value
10/12/16 featuring Living Proof: minimum spend $50, value $20.47 to $39
10/19/16 featuring assorted brands; step-up featuring Philosophy: minimum spend $60, value $93.00 to $94.48; step-up minimum spend $75, additional value $11.28 to $15.60 + cosmetic bag value
10/26/16 featuring Julep: minimum spend $50, value $37.05
11/2/16 featuring Smashbox: minimum spend $50, value $49.32 to $52.07
11/9/16 featuring Urban Decay: minimum spend $50, value $30.92

There’s a free-with-any-purchase GWP for a travel-sized It’s a Ten Miracle Daily Conditioner, which retails for at $11.96 for 2 oz (or value @ $42.96/33.8 oz = $2.54). That brings the total value of today’s GWPs to $13.13 to $52.47, so if you hit the $40 minimum spend exactly and were willing to pay retail price per oz for all the GWPs, you’d be saving 25-57%, which on the low end is by far the worst deal I’ve seen so far for a Beauty Break, but on the higher end is actually a better-than-average deal.

Value: Ulta Beauty Break 11/9/16

Urban Decay, $50 buy-in. Low value.

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  • Naked Skin One Done Hybrid Complexion Perfector sample, 0.36 oz @ $34/1.3 oz = $9.42
  • Original Primer Potion sample, 0.06 oz @ $20/0.33 oz = $3.64
  • Revolution High Color Lipgloss in Savage sample, 0.05 oz @ $22/0.17 oz = $6.47
  • Eyeshadow Fireball Eyeshadow sample, 0.03 oz @ $19/0.05 = $11.40

Total value: $30.92

This is the lowest Wednesday Beauty Break value I’ve seen since I started tracking (the ones that pop up on random days are usually lower). The primer potion has been half off at Sephora for a while, which makes the value seem even lower.

9/21/16 featuring Becca: minimum spend $50, value $45.40 to $46.84
9/28/16 featuring Philosophy: minimum spend $50, value $41.12 to $46.95
10/05/16 featuring Benefit: minimum spend $50, value $31.60 to $32.74 + cosmetic bag value
10/12/16 featuring Living Proof: minimum spend $50, value $20.47 to $39
10/19/16 featuring assorted brands; step-up featuring Philosophy: minimum spend $60, value $93.00 to $94.48; step-up minimum spend $75, additional value $11.28 to $15.60 + cosmetic bag value
10/26/16 featuring Julep: minimum spend $50, value $37.05
11/2/16 featuring Smashbox: minimum spend $50, value $49.32 to $52.07

There aren’t any gift-with-any-purchase items that I’m aware of. If you hit the $50 minimum spend exactly and were willing to pay retail price per oz for all the GWPs, you’d be saving 38%, which is lower than most Beauty Break values.

I made a purchase today to take advantage of a reward points multiplier, but waffled over it longer than I would have if the Beauty Break had been more impressive. I’ll use all four of these eventually, so in that sense it’s better for me than the skincare sampler from 10/19 (when I made my last purchase). Now that I’m looking at the list, I’m realizing that I liked the first 4 weeks that I tracked, was kind of meh about 10/19, and have since been unimpressed – am curious to see how the beauty break values will play out as we approach the holidays.

Value: Ulta Beauty Break 11/02/16

Smashbox, $50 buy-in. Pretty unremarkable in my opinion.

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  • Photo Finish Hydrating Under Eye Primer, 0.17 oz @ $29/0.33 oz = $14.94
  • Full Exposure Mascara in Jet Black, 0.14 oz @ $22/0.38 oz = $8.11
  • X-rated Mascara in Rich Black, 0.14 oz @ $22/0.30 oz = $10.27
  • Photo Finish Foundation Primer, 0.25 oz @ $16/0.50 oz = $8 or @ $36/1 oz = $9
  • Photo Finish Pore Minimizing Foundation Primer, 0.25 oz @ $16/0.50 oz = $8 or @$39/1 oz = $9.75

Total value: $49.32 to $52.07

The value seems pretty reasonable, I’m just not excited about this set. Smashbox gives out samples of the Photo Finish Primer all the time, which makes them feel less valuable.

9/21/16 featuring Becca: minimum spend $50, value $45.40 to $46.84
9/28/16 featuring Philosophy: minimum spend $50, value $41.12 to $46.95
10/05/16 featuring Benefit: minimum spend $50, value $31.60 to $32.74 + cosmetic bag value
10/12/16 featuring Living Proof: minimum spend $50, value $20.47 to $39
10/19/16 featuring assorted brands; step-up featuring Philosophy: minimum spend $60, value $93.00 to $94.48; step-up minimum spend $75, additional value $11.28 to $15.60 + cosmetic bag value
10/26/16 featuring Julep: minimum spend $50, value $37.05

The only current gift-with-every-purchase GWP I’m aware of is the Joico K-PAC Color Therapy Luster Lock, 1.7oz, $4.99 (now on sale for $3, cheaper per oz than the 4.7 oz size).

If you hit the $50 minimum spend exactly and were willing to pay retail price per oz for all the GWPs, you’d be saving 51-53%, which is in line with typical Beauty Break values.

Things I Did Not Buy: Benefit Mini Sets

Benefit has a couple of promotional deluxe-sample-set GWPs right now, one with Dandelion minis and the other with Hoola minis. Pick one with $65 purchase (DANDYSET or HOOLASET) or both with $105 purchase (CHEEKDUO).

The part I wanted to share was that you can actually buy the sets for $12 each, though they’re a bit hidden on the site – not openly listed or searchable as far as I can see, but with the direct links below you can add them to your cart. Free shipping with code DONTGO and you can pick two packet samples at checkout.

Dandelion Darlings!

 

dandelion brightening finishing powder fun size mini | 3.0 g Net wt. 0.1 oz. • dandelion dew liquid blush fun size mini | 5.0 mL / 0.16 US fl. oz. • dandelion shy beam liquid highlighter fun size mini | 2.5 mL / 0.08 US fl. oz.
dandelion brightening finishing powder fun size mini | 3.0 g Net wt. 0.1 oz. • dandelion dew liquid blush fun size mini | 5.0 mL / 0.16 US fl. oz. • dandelion shy beam liquid highlighter fun size mini | 2.5 mL / 0.08 US fl. oz.

Value breakdown:
Dandelion Brightening Finishing Powder: 3.0 g at $29/7.0 g (or $15/3.5 g) = $12.43 ($12.86)
Dandelion Dew Liquid Blush: 5.0 mL at $28/30 mL = $4.67
Dandelion Shy Beam Liquid Highlighter: 2.5 mL at $26/10 mL = $6.50
Total: $23.60 ($24.03)

Get Your Hoola On Sampling Kit

hoola matte bronzer fun size mini | 3.0 g Net wt. 0.1 oz. •dew the hoola liquid bronzer fun size mini | 5.0 mL / 0.16 US fl. oz. • hoola zero tanlines body bronzer fun size mini | 15.0 mL / 0.5 US fl. oz.
hoola matte bronzer fun size mini | 3.0 g Net wt. 0.1 oz. •dew the hoola liquid bronzer fun size mini | 5.0 mL / 0.16 US fl. oz. • hoola zero tanlines body bronzer fun size mini | 15.0 mL / 0.5 US fl. oz.

Value breakdown:
Hoola Matte Bronzer: 3.0 g at $29/8.0 g (or $15/4.0 g) = $10.88 ($11.25)
Dew the Hoola Liquid Bronzer: 5.0 mL at $28/30 mL = $4.67
Hoola Zero Tanlines Body Bronzer: 15.0 mL at $30/147 mL = $3.06
Total: $18.70 ($19.08)

 

Things I Did Not Buy: Kat von D x Formula X 50% off at Sephora

I love anything miniature, and I especially love makeup minis because I rarely use up full-sizes and I’d rather have a bunch of different products to sample than one that I won’t use up. I’ve never tried Kat von D lipsticks or Formula X polishes, and now that these KVD x Formula X sets are on sale, I’m having such a hard time not buying them…

Studded X: 3 Mini Lip + 3 Nail Polish Duo, originally $29.50, sale $14.75
Studded X: 3 Mini Lip + 3 Nail Polish Duo, originally $29.50, sale $14.75
Studded X: Mini Lip + Nail Polish Duo in Adora, originally $15, now $7.50

Continue reading Things I Did Not Buy: Kat von D x Formula X 50% off at Sephora

Value: Ulta Travel Sizes

Since it seems that people liked the Sephora travel-size value post, I made a cost-per-ounce comparison for Ulta too. This was way more of a pain than the Sephora one because Ulta somehow 1. doesn’t always list product sizes, 2. lists travel-size products separately (e.g. if something comes in four different sizes, the three larger sizes are all on one product page but the travel size is listed separate), and 3. sometimes lists travel-size products under slightly different names. I didn’t realize #3 until I was halfway done, so there are probably products I missed because there was no full-size product with the exact same name so I thought they only came in travel sizes.

Some of the travel-sized size info I based on what I found on other sites (e.g. looking at ebay postings to get the size of the It Cosmetics Brow Power Universal Eyebrow Pencil); these entries are marked – this is just my ‘best guess’ for the travel-size product based on product sizes the company is known to produce.

Let me know if I missed/need to correct anything!

Continue reading Value: Ulta Travel Sizes

Review: Sephora Play! July 2016

I rarely use up full-size products, so I love deluxe sample sizes, but with Birchbox derailing and Glossybox more likely to send out random full-size products I don’t want from brands I don’t know, Sephora Play! started looking like a better and better option.

This is my first Play! box – Play! is still in (rather opaque) waitlist mode, and I subscribed as soon as I got off the waitlist.

Continue reading Review: Sephora Play! July 2016