Sephora VIB haul + first impressions

Since I did a post last month on what I wanted to buy during the VIB sale, I thought I follow up with a post on what I actually did buy. Even though I spent so much time carefully researching what products I wanted to buy before the sale's start, all those thoughts flew out the window the minute I walked into Sephora. It's a kid walking into a candy store kinda feeling and I get overwhelmed by all the makeup and skincare and haircare options!

On a side note, this whole flat-laying thing is a lot harder than it looks. It takes time to strategically place items in a totally blasé unorganized manner. This was my 4th attempt at photographing this haul!

Bumble & Bumble straight blow dry: Technically I don't have a real first impression on this since I have yet to use it. But I do like the smell of the product-- it's kind of cologne-y. Also, the tube packaging gets a thumbs up from me. It's sanitary and easy to use.

Fresh soy face cleanser: The bottle for this cleanser says "for all skin types" and for once, that's actually true. I'm #blessed with sensitive, combination skin so I occasionally get dry patches on my cheeks and excess oil on my t-zone. This cleanser flawlessly deals with both those issues. The main reason I bought this face wash is because it can be used to remove eye makeup as well! I've used it to remove waterproof mascara and it does so without irritating my eyes.

First Aid Beauty facial radiance pads: These were a must have straight from Caroline Hirons's blog. The pads contain lactic and glycolic acid, two AHAs that work as chemical exfoliants to slough off the top layer of your skin. Plus, lactic acid helps hydrate your skin! So far I really like these. I have a lot of under the skin bumps on my cheeks and after using these I've noticed an improvement in them.

May Coop Raw Sauce: If you're like me you may be thinking "why the f*ck would I want to put something called 'raw sauce' on my face?" Icky name aside, this stuff is the bomb dot com. This essence instantly sinks into my skin and makes me feel all... plump. There's no residual stickiness that sometimes comes from applying anything of a hydrating nature. Hands down this was my best purchase of the entire sale. I could go on and on about how much I love this miracle in a bottle but I'll save that for a future more in-depth review post.

Clinique moisture surge extended thirst relief: Clinique's skincare line is consistently good, in my experience. In the past I've tried used their dramatically different moisturizing gel and loved it for my oilier, summer skin. This is like the beefed up big sister to that gel. While I don't think it lives up to its 24 hour claim (although I haven't tested this), it's still a perfect overnight moisturizer for me. It's very lightweight and easily absorbs into my skin. It also layers nicely under my SPF in the mornings.

Hourglass veil mineral primer: Hourglass's primer is easily one of the most hyped...but I'm not sure why. I've only used this a few times but so far I'm not "omg so amazed" by it. It's not bad, but it's also not mind blowingly awesome. When I first apply it, it casts a very noticeable white cast on my tan skin thanks to the spf. With some blending it disappears but not to the point that I would feel comfortable wearing this alone with some concealer sans foundation.

Sunday Riley power couple duo: Right off the bat I'll mention that I haven't given good genes a run yet. In the meanwhile I have introduced the Luna sleeping oil into my nightly routine. It's my first retinol product and I'm pleasantly surprised to say that it hasn't dried out my skin. It's actually pretty moisturizing thanks to all the oils. On the other hand, I can't say I've noticed any immediate differences in the few days I've been using it. All I can say is that I do have high hopes (mostly because of its absurd price tag.)

Sephora instant moisturizer: I've talked about this multiple times here (such as here and here). To sum it up, it's relatively cheap, it's oil free, and it's moisturizing. This is my 6th bottle of the year which is pretty telling.

bareMinerals complete coverage serum concealer in tan: I've avoided bareMinerals like the plague after buying one of their starter kits a few years ago and hating every single product. Thankfully Sabrina of the beauty lookbook's review convinced me otherwise. Usually under eye concealers don't work for me-- they crease, don't completely cover my veins, and look generally awful. The couple of times I've given this a whirl, it's managed to do a pretty good job of solving all those issues. I'm continuing to try it out to see if it truly deserves a stamp of approval or not.

Aaaand that's all. I really loved a lot of these products (there were a few others not included which I did not love and thus returned), and I plan on doing more in depth reviews on some of them in future posts. I'm working on a winter skincare series which hopefully will include quite a few of these goodies!

P.s. don't forget about Sephora's current customer loyalty promo! All beauty insiders/ VIBs received $15/ $20/ or $25 off $50 purchase coupons expiring on the 14th!

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