Anti-Haul #5: the One Where I Talk Myself Out of Buying Everything at the Sephora VIB Sale

Since the Sephora VIB sale was announced, I shifted around my content calendar to accommodate it. I was initially going to publish an Anti-Haul post tomorrow, but instead, I decided to share one today that's a little bit different.

If you've read any of my previous anti-haul posts, you know I usually feature products that I would never ever consider buying. Not at the time of publishing nor in the future. What's the point of an anti-haul if you end up hauling?!

But in today's post, I'm talking about products that I am very, very tempted to purchase... but I shouldn't and hopefully won't. Or at least I won't be purchasing them at the VIB sale ๐Ÿ™†

If you're not familiar with Sephora's VIB sale it's their once a year 20% off sale extravaganza. As a beauty lover and beauty blogger, it's like the garden of Eden. It's easy enough as is to get swept up in the buy, buy, buy mentality, but when an exceptionally good sale like Sephora's rolls around, it gets especially tricky to control myself.

To help curb the urge to splurge, I started hacking away at my wishlist and whipped up this anti-haul post. It's to remind myself that I don't need to buy everything that catches my attention simply because it's 20% off.

Hopefully, it helps you save some money too ๐Ÿ˜‰

WTF: Cleansing Balm Edition

2 years ago if you told me that I would be using oils to clean my face on a daily basis I would have laughed it off. I'll blame that partly on the oil cleansing method which to this day I still find too complicated to try.

But since then I've seen the light and am fully committed to the double cleanse life. I can't imagine a nighttime skincare routine without a balm cleanser. So in today's post, I'm explaining what are balm cleansers, how do they work, when to use them, and also reviewing the 10 I currently have in my stash!

As always with my WTF posts, I would like to disclaim that I'm not professional. I'm just a girl, who likes skincare, who easily gets distracted by google...and reddit...and the internet in general.

Blogging 101: How to Get Free Shit as a Blogger

Somehow over the past 5 years of blogging, I've managed to pick up some knowledge. Shocking, I know. I'm not a blogging-goals-extraordinaire-girl-boss (side note, I hate that term ๐Ÿ˜‘ ) but I've learned a thing or two that I'm going to share with y'all today.

As you might have surmised from the title of this post, today we're talking PR aka press samples aka free shit. From my personal experience, PR is one of the most confounding things about the world of blogging to non-bloggers.

I have gotten a lot of questions about it lately, most were polite but a few were aggressive.
I've had people explicitly ask "how do you get free stuff and can you get me free stuff?"

Pro tip: calling it free stuff isn't going to win you any points. Yes, it is essentially free shit, but us bloggers don't like to think of it like that. It takes a large investment of time & money to get to a point where you start getting free shit. And often times that free stuff comes with strings attached.

First and foremost: what is PR? In the world of blogging, PR are samples that brands/ PR agencies/ retailers send to bloggers free of charge. Sometimes brands stipulate that a blogger must post about the product in exchange for the sample, while other times the item is sent with no expectations at all.

But that's not why you came to read this post, right? You want to know how to get the free shit.

I would like to emphasize that nobody is entitled to PR. It's a perk of blogging, for sure, but it is not a right. Regardless of the amount of followers a blogger has, nobody "deserves" PR.

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5 Reasons Why I Choose Green Beauty

Today I'm partnering with the Natural Curator in celebration of their Go Natural campaign and launch of their starter kit which features 7 green beauty products for both green beauty beginners and experts. So far I've tried 2 of the 7 and I gotta say, I'm really enjoying them. The Briogeo dry shampoo smells soooo good and soaks up the oils from my roots without irritating my scalp. The Nuori lip balm has a comfortable, lightweight consistency and reminds me a lot of the Kiehl's lip balm...except cruelty-free and "green."

I'll be honest, it took me a while to get on the "green" beauty bandwagon. A big part of it is because there's no official definition of what "green" exactly means and green-washing and fear mongering is pretty rampant in the beauty industry. While those two facts still hold true, I've found my own way to navigate the green/ clean/ natural beauty world. So today I'm chatting about 5 things that define green beauty for me and what ultimately made me start choosing to buy more green beauty brands and products.

The Natural Curator's Go Natural campaign also defines "green beauty" in their eyes and also has helpful articles on how to read labels and what the various organic labels really mean.

30 Days, 30-ish Empties

For the month of September, I put myself on a no-buy. But from previous experience, I know that I can get a bit...restless without picking up a thing here or there so I decided to do a project pan as well! If you're unfamiliar with project pan, it's basically when you purposefully try to use up X products. So for the month of September, I aimed to use up 30 products-- samples, minis, full sizes. And I'm happy to say I succeeded!

As per usual with my empties posts, I've split up everything into three categories-- items I will definitely repurchase, items I may repurchase, and items I may not repurchase. As I write more of these, I find myself getting pickier and pickier with what goes in the definitely repurchase category. There are so many skincare and beauty products out there, I need to really, really, really love a product to 100% know I'll be repurchasing it.

Because there's a shitton of products I panned, this is gonna be a flash empties. Every review I write in this post cannot be longer than a sentence. Ready, set, go! Warning: run-on sentences coming right 'atcha.

P.S If you don't know I'm running a giveaway fundraiser to raise money for Hurricane Maria relief! For every $5 you donate, you will be entered to win a prize featuring a beautyblender and full-sized products from brands like Algenist, First Aid Beauty, Saturday Skin, and more! Donate and find all the details here ๐Ÿ’™

Seattle: Eat, See, Sleep

Today's post is a little bit different because I'm trying my hand at travel blogging!

At the end of last month I took a trip to Vancouver and Seattle! I've never been to the Pacific Northwest before and quickly fell in love with the area.

I'm not going to pretend I'm some super professional travel influencer extraordinaire because I'm pretty much the exact opposite. I would like to think I'm a "modern tourist." If that sounds like a bunch of hooey to you, it's probably cause it is-- I just made it up the term right now ๐Ÿ˜‚

But what I mean is I like doing touristy things, but also like partaking in not as traditional stereotypical touristy things-- like local parks, local eats, local shops, etc. I refuse to eat at a chain restaurant while on vacation. Unless it's In N' Out. Or I'm out of the country and the fast food menu is drastically different than the American menu and I must try it out for the sake of science.

Because I can be a bit bossy and my family is too lazy to do the research, I'm always in charge of our travel itineraries. While I like getting inspiration from Instagram and Pinterest, the bulk of my research comes from travel books! They're usually concise and you have all the info you need in your hands-- addresses, prices, hours, highlights, etc. They're extra handy if you're traveling to a foreign country and don't have internet access.

I bought/ borrowed about a dozen books before my trip but my favorites were Frommer's EasyGuide to Seattle, Portland and the Oregon Coast and Fodor's Seattle.

I also got a ton of recommendations from people on instagram! Shout out to Julia ( and Lauren (@mytwopence) for their amazing food recs ๐Ÿค—

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