Category Archives: Sephora

Sephora Play Finally Open to the West Coast

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Play by Sephora

Play by Sephora

Great news for all of us West Coasters. Play! by Sephora is finally open to all of us now.  For those who haven’t heard about it, Sephora’s Play box is a subscription box like Ipsy or Birchbox.  For $10 a month (plus tax in some states), you get five deluxe samples of products sold at Sephora, plus a fragrance bonus each month.  Also included is a “Play Book” that is packed with tips, tricks, and helpful advice on how to use your samples. There is a “Play Pass” that can be brought to your local Sephora for a free one-on-one tutorial with a beauty expert. You can also redeem your “Play Pass” for 50 bonus Beauty Insider points with any in-store purchase during the same store visit.  Just remember that each ticket may only be used once and expires after 30 days.  Play! by Sephora has been around for about six months in selected markets.  They have been slowly expanding, but the May 2016 box will be available to the Contiguous US.  (Not sure when Alaska and Hawaii will be included.)  I have seen some of the previous boxes, so I jumped at the chance to sign up as soon as I was able.

There is a waiting list, so you will have to hurry if you want to sign up in time for May’s box.  I can not wait!

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Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case Swatches

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Tarte Light Of The Party Collector's Makeup Case

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case

Today I have something very exciting to show you, the Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case.  I am a big fan of Tarte’s Holiday palettes, and this year the Sephora exclusive Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case caught my attention.  I haven’t had the palette for very long and have only used it a couple times, so this isn’t really a proper review.  But I know that the Sephora VIB sale is right around the corner, so I wanted to at least show it to you and swatch it for you so that you could get a sense of whether or not you want to add it to your Sephora Loves list to pounce on when the sale opens up.  So let’s take a look.

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector's Makeup Case

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case

Here is what Sephora has to say about the Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case: “Be the center of the room with this festive, limited-edition collection, feautring tarte’s beauty favorites, designed to create smoldering makeup looks for any celebration. Create an eye-catching statement wherever you go with the travel-size takeaway palette, featuring shadow, cheek and contouring shades. The trendy collector’s case features a full-size, built-in eye shadow palette with 30 shades, including 24 brilliant, never before seen shades in mixed mattes and shimmers. With a travel-friendly eye shadow brush and deluxe-size mascara, this set is perfect for achieving seamless, on-the-go touch-ups for alluring, party-perfect looks.”  I love that there is a travel face and eye palette withing this Holiday palette.  It’s like getting a two for one deal, and I think it really raises the value of the overall palette.  The travel brush is not my favorite thing, but it will do in a pinch and is a good size for traveling.  Lights, Camera, Lashes 4-in-1 Mascara is a long-time favorite and it is always welcome as far as I am concerned.

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector's Makeup Case

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case

When you remove the gold travel palette you can see that the Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case has a large mirror.  The lid is too heavy to stand up on its own, but if you can lean it against something the mirror is very useful for application.  The palette itself is heavy cardboard with a rose gold finish, so I think it is quite durable.  It does not lift out of the case.  The case zips up for extra security.  The lid is covered in sequins that remind me of an Aztec or Santa Fe style design.  The photograph doesn’t do it justice.  In real life the mixed metals look is really beautiful.

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector's Makeup Case Travel Palette

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case Travel Palette

The travel palette comes with a bronzer in Social Butterfly, a blush in Amazed, and a Highlight in Pink Champagne.  It also comes with six eyeshadows.  You can absolutely do a full face with this travel palette.  The bronzer is a nice color for those with light skin, though it may pull a little to warm with certain undertones.  The blush is an everyday warm pink that will flatter almost anyone.  Pink Champagne is a little more highlight that I usually go for, so I have to use a very light hand when I use it.  To be fair, though, I am very conservative with my highlight.  Most people will probably love it.

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector's Makeup Case Travel Palette Face

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case Travel Palette Face

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector's Makeup Case Travel Palette Eye

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case Travel Palette Eye

The six eyeshadows in the travel palette have a good range of neutral tones.  You will find a good mix of matte and shimmer in taupe, brown, and plum shades.  Popcorn Strand is a great matte browbone shade, while Yule be Surprised and Mulberry and Bright make great liners.  The two metallic shimmer shades are absolutely gorgeous.  I am very pleased with the travel palette, and like I said before, I think it adds a lot of value to the case.

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector's Makeup Case

Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case

The main palette of the Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case contains 24 shades.  Tarte is not Urban Decay or Kat Von D, so all the shades in this palette are going to be easy, wearable colors that a person can wear to the office as well as a night out.  I love looking at those rainbow palettes and my inner unicorn wants to snatch them up, but as I get older I find that I get a lot more use out of brands like Tarte and Lorac that give me these beautiful user friendly shades.  That being said, this isn’t any old neutrals palette.  The shadows are gorgeous, the shade names are adorable, and I get a lot of inspiration for different looks from this palette.  I think that it is a smart palette.  Tarte chose well when it came to which shades to make shimmer and which ones to make matte.  It’s a great mix of mid tones and dark tones, plenty of highlights, and the shades are pretty evenly spit between warm and cool undertones.  I swatched the shadows in columns moving from left to right.

Top-Bottom: Sugar Cookie, Miracle of Light, Under the Mistle-Taupe, Sleigh Watch

Top-Bottom: Sugar Cookie, Miracle of Light, Under the Mistle-Taupe, Sleigh Watch

  • Sugar Cookie
  • Miracle of Light
  • Under the Mistle-Taupe
  • Sleigh Watch
Top-Bottom: In a Flurry, Rum Pum Plum, Ring-a-ling, Mulled Wine

Top-Bottom: In a Flurry, Rum Pum Plum, Ring-a-ling, Mulled Wine

  • In a Flurry
  • Rum Pum Plum
  • Ring-a-ling
  • Mulled Wine
Top-Bottom: Fizz the Season, Tartetini, Fireside Chat, Cocoa What Fun

Top-Bottom: Fizz the Season, Tartetini, Fireside Chat, Cocoa What Fun

  • Fizz the Season
  • Tartetini
  • Fireside Chat
  • Cocoa What Fun
Top-Bottom: It's Snow Time, baby it's Gold Outside, Party Favored, Black Velvet

Top-Bottom: It’s Snow Time, Baby it’s Gold Outside, Party Favored, Black Velvet

  • It’s Snow Time
  • Baby it’s Gold Outside
  • Party Favored
  • Black Velvet
Top-Bottom: Eggnog, Peach on Earth, Gingerbread Mansion, Haute Chocolate

Top-Bottom: Eggnog, Peach on Earth, Gingerbread Mansion, Haute Chocolate

  • Eggnog
  • Peach on Earth
  • Gingerbread Mansion
  • Haute Chocolate
Top-Bottom: What a Wonderful Pearl, Come What Grey, Chrome for the Holidays, Midnight Kiss

Top-Bottom: What a Wonderful Pearl, Come What Grey, Chrome for the Holidays, Midnight Kiss

  • What a Wonderful Pearl
  • Come What Grey
  • Chrome for the Holidays
  • Midnight Kiss

There are some truly lovely shades in this palette, and I can not recommend it enough.  The Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case is a Holiday palette that anyone could get good use of.  The shades are universally flattering across all ages and skin tones.  This would make an amazing gift for both an establishes makeup lover or a beauty beginner.  The Tarte Light Of The Party Collector’s Makeup Case is $59 for the 30 shadows, 3 face products, brush and mascara, and that lovely sequined case.  It may not be the most inexpensive Holiday palette out there, but I think that it is a pretty good deal for what you actually get.  I like Tarte’s shadow formula, and you can’t beat their Amazonian Clay formula for their face products.  Again it is a Sephora exclusive.  Like all Holiday palettes, it is Limited Edition.  If you can snag it during the VIB sale, then I definitely would.  Just don’t wait too long because you don’t want it to sell out before you can get your hands on it.

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos

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Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos

Today as promised, I want to show you the Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos that I hauled for my birthday.  I purchased two shades of the MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos: Tangerine Tease and Tea Rose Tickle.  They are gorgeous, and I am so glad that I got them.  There are six blushes in the line, and I am seriously contemplating picking up some more of them.  These blushes are not going to be for everybody, but if you like pigmented high-shimmer blush then you will love the MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos.

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos

Here is what Sephora has to say about the MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos: “Infused with radiance-boosting minerals, sea coral, and green tea extract, these baked pigments sweep on weightless, natural-looking color—so you’ll be the picture of health. The duo combines a luminizer to highlight cheekbones and a matte satin blush to contour and define. The ulta-light, micronized pigments blend effortlessly into the skin to enhance skintone and give you a flawless, no-makeup look and feel. Customize your glow by blending the matte blush with the luminous formula for a perfect finish, or use them separately to achieve different looks for day and night. The fine pigments were infused with spring water, shaped by hand, and then slowly cooked for the unique, airy texture that melts into skin. Enhance your natural features with this duo and enjoy the seamless, breathable finish all day.”

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos

If you prefer a matte blush then you may as well stop reading right now.  The MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos are all about the glow.  There are no glitter particles and the shimmer finish is very fine.  The duos come with a highlighting side and a satin side.  The overall effect that the blushes give me is a radiant healthy glow that is simply stunning.  Keep in mind, though, that the skin on my cheeks is pretty even in texture.  My large pores are limited to my nose for the most part, and I do not have acne scars or other textural issues in the area that I apply my blush.  While I think the glowing finish is so beautiful, it will emphasize uneven texture.  If you have problems with skin texture on your cheeks, then you may want to steer clear of the MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos and opt for more matte options.

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tangerine Tease

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tangerine Tease

The first Sephora MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo shade that I chose was Tangerine Tease.  Sephora describes it as shimmering warm orange and tanned tangerine.  I think that is a pretty accurate description.  Tangerine Tease definitely falls more in the orange family than the coral family.  It is a blush for neutral and warm undertones, and I think that it can suit light skin all the way to dark skin tones.  Fair skinnned girls may find Tangerine Tease too pigmented and it is too warm for cooler undertones.

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tangerine Tease

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tangerine Tease

I love Tangerine Tease.  I am a fan or orangey blushes, and this is stunning.  I literally could not stop looking at my face the first time I wore it.  It was perfect for my “golden goddess” look throughout August, and it is a great transition shade for summer to fall.  I know that orange blushes are not everyone’s favorite, but I think that I look so fierce when I wear Tangerine Tease.  If you can pull it off, I highly recommend this shade.

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tea Rose Tickle

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tea Rose Tickle

The second Sephora MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo shade that I chose was Tea Rose Tickle.  Sephora describes it as: shimmering burnished mauve and muted pink brown.  I disagree with that assessment.  I would describe the shade as a shimmering plum-toned mauve and a medium rose pink.  Again, the blush is stunning.  I don’t mean to be repetitive, but I mean it in the truest sense of the word.  Tea Rose Tickle has more of a neutral tone, so both warm and cool skin tones can wear it.  That plum-toned mauve is definitely dark, but it is the smaller of the two shades, so with careful application even fair skinned girls can probably pull it off.  I have no issues with my light skin.

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tea Rose Tickle

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tea Rose Tickle

Tea Rose Tickle is a wonderful option for fall and winter.  You should definitely consider picking it up.  The MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos have great pigmentation.  I always recommend a duo fiber stipple brush for blush application, especially if you have fair or light skin.  I do think the MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos fade a little bit throughout the day.  They will get you through the work day, but if you are going out after work, you may want to bring the blush with you for a touch up.  The Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos are $17, and I would say that they are worth every penny.  They feel a lot more expensive than they are.  They give my skin a radiant glow that I just can’t get enough of, and I recommend that you pick them up for yourself ASAP.

 

Monthly Favorites and Fails for August 2015

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August Favorites

August Favorites

Hey everyone, I am back.  Last week kind of got away from me, so consequently I wasn’t able to post at all.  You know how it is sometimes.  Thanks for your patience.  But now I am here with my Monthly Favorites and Fails for August.  (How is it September already?  Good Lord, time is flying by!)  Late Summer is when I embrace my inner golden goddess and go for looks that lean heavily toward orange, gold, and bronze shades.  I am usually not a huge fan of highlighters, but this is the time of year when I give in to illumination and get all glowy.  So, let’s take a look at my August favorites.

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation

Too Faced Born This Way Foundation

My first favorite is actually one that I don’t have to photograph.  This is the Too Faced Born This Way Foundation.  I got a couple of samples from Sephora and I have been using them up throughout the month.  I have heard a lot of good things about this foundation on Youtube, and I think it lives up to the hype.  I have really enjoyed the two samples that I received.  Born This Way has a lightweight, skin-like feel.  t feels like you aren’t wearing anything.  It builds to medium coverage, enough to hide my rosacea redness.  I am not one who usually buys higher end foundations because I think that there are several really good ones in the drugstore.  But, if you don’t mind shelling out the extra dollars, Born This Way is a very good option.

e.l.f. Studio Contour Palette

I have really been enjoying the e.l.f. Studio Contour Palette.  I have a full review coming for this product, so stay tuned for swatches and more details.  There is a good collection of shades in this palette that make it quite useful.  I like that the highlight shade is subtle and that there are both warm and cool shades.  When I purchased the palette online, I was initially concerned that the contour shade might be too dark, but it is much lighter than I thought that it would be, and a great shade for me.  I definitely think that the palette is worth picking up.

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tangerine Tease

Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tangerine Tease

My absolute favorite product of the month has been my Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tangerine Tease.  OMG you guys, this is so gorgeous!  I picked up this blush for my birthday and have been loving it ever since.  I promised KK that I would review the two MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duos that I purchased, so a full review and swatches are on the way, but in the meantime I am just going to gush about how beautiful Tangerine Tease is.  It is just so glowy!  Tangerine Tease is this fiery orange unicorn kiss of illuminated loveliness.  (I know, I know- words, I haz them.)  But seriously, the first time I wore Tangerine Tease I could not stop looking at my face.  It is pure gorgeousness.  I will try to get the review up soon so that you can see swatches.

Sleek Eye & Cheek Palette in Dancing Til Dusk

Sleek Eye & Cheek Palette in Dancing Til Dusk

In my June favorites I mentioned the Sleek Eye & Cheek Palette in A Midsummer’s Dream, and for August I have been reaching for Dancing Til Dusk.  These Sleek Eye & Cheek Palettes are really nice.  I have a haul post featuring swatches of the new Sleek Eye & Cheek Palettes.  Be sure to check it out to see how the shades swatch for the three Sleek Eye & Cheek Palette that I purchased.  Dancing Til Dusk has been exactly what I have been wanting to compliment my fiery Tangerine Tease cheeks.  It is a generally neutral palette, but that burnt coral blush makes a fantastic eye shadow shade up pump up an otherwise neutral eye look.  I think Sleek is under-appreciated here in the States.  Shipping is not that bad, and Sleek offers free shipping to the US (with a min. purchase) several times a year.  If you get a chance, you should definitely explore what Sleek has too offer.

Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara

Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara

I am still loving Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara, and am on my second tube.  In a row.  That says a lot about how good it is.  Long fluttery lashes with no clumps is my preferred look, and Maybelline Lash Sensational Mascara gives me what I need.  I have no issues with flaking or smudging.  Everyone has different needs and preferences with mascara, but I think it’s a great formula for me.  Maybelline has become my favorite drugstore brand for mascara, and Lash Sensational is a winner.

Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment in Honey

Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment in Honey

And my final Favorite for August is Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatment in Honey.  You all know by now how much I love Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatments.  They are one of my favorite lip products on the market, and the only complaint I have for them is their ridiculous price.  This mini of Honey came in a holiday set.  It is a sheer warm nude, the perfect shade to accompany my golden/bronze looks throughout the month.  The formula is wonderfully moisturizing and truly lovely.  Be sure to keep an eye out for any value sets Fresh may be releasing for the upcoming Holiday season, because these Fresh Sugar Tinted Lip Treatments are totally worth it.

That does it for my favorites, now onto this month’s Fails.  Always keep in mind that my reviews are based on my specific experience with these products, and good or bad, you may have different results.  So, just because I give a product a bad review, it doesn’t necessarily mean that it is a bad product.  It just means that it did not work for me.

Stila Perfectly Poreless Putty Perfector

Stila Perfectly Poreless Putty Perfector

The biggest disappointment of the month was the new Stila Perfectly Poreless Putty Perfector.  I wanted to like this product so much, but it was an utter fail for me.  The Putty Perfector is part of the new Fall 2015 collection from Stila, and it is a hybrid skin perfector that’s a traditional pressed powder and a cream foundation.  It’s a very unique product, which is why I had to try it.  Here is the blurb from Sephora: “Stila’s Perfectly Poreless Putty Perfector offers the best of a traditional pressed powder and a cream foundation in one. This weightless, invisible formula features natural-looking coverage while it smoothes the look of skin, blurs imperfections, and can be worn alone, layered on top of foundation, or used for touch-ups on the go. Smudgeproof and waterproof, this foundation is long-lasting and ensures complexion perfection from morning to midnight.”  I had seen reviews that it could be used on all skin types, but that is false.  It clung to the dry patches on my skin, making them look flaky and gross.  I also think that I had a mild allergic reaction because both times that I used the Putty Perfector my skin got really itchy and I broke out.  I have seen some rave reviews on the Perfectly Poreless Putty Perfector but for me, Stila failed with this one.  So sad.  I was really bummed by this one.

That is all for my August Favorites and Fails.  I hope you saw something that you might want to check out for yourself.  If you have used any of these products, I’d love to know what you thought of them in the comments below.  It still feels very much like Summer to me with our triple digit heat wave last week, but I am anxious to usher in the Fall.  Fall and Winter are my favorite seasons, and I can not wait for the temperature to ease up a little.  I will miss seeing the leaves change color this year, now that I am in So Cal where our trees are pretty steady.  Still, it is just around the corner and I am ready to welcome Fall in with open arms.  How about you?

Birthday Haul: MAC, e.l.f., and Sephora

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Haul time

Haul time

Hey everyone, I have a birthday haul to show you.  You have seemed to really enjoy haul posts in the past, so I thought that I would share what beauty items I got for my birthday this year.  This should go without saying because you all know me by now, but this post isn’t meant to be taken as bragging.  It’s all in the spirit of fun to be shared with other makeup addicts like myself.  I didn’t go to crazy this year, but I did get a few things from MAC, e.l.f., and Sephora.  If you see anything that you want a full review on, just let me know.

MAC

MAC Prep + Prime Lip

MAC Prep + Prime Lip

I only needed one thing from MAC, and that is the MAC Prep + Prime Lip.  I first got this product around the time of my wedding and loved it, but that was several years ago.  I haven’t had it in an extremely long time, but I always remembered how much I liked it.  I’ve tried many balms and lip treatments, but nothing works quite like MAC Prep + Prime Lip on my lips.  I don’t think everyone needs it, but my lips are extremely dry and lipsticks go on and wear so much better on me when I have Prep + Prime Lip.  I am very excited to have it in my collection once more.

e.l.f.

e.l.f. haul

e.l.f. haul

I finally broke down and placed an e.l.f. order.  I have been pretty unhappy with e.l.f.’s exclusion of new products in their promotions, and consequently have not placed an e.l.f. order in quite some time.  But I really wanted to try out the new Studio Contour Palette and one of the new Smudge pot shades.  I finally broke down and took advantage of one of their free shipping offers.  Also, in July e.l.f. offered a free gift with purchase to all customers, so they sent me two Expert Liquid Liners for free.  I am not sure if I am going to keep them or give them away, so I left them in their packages, but I appreciate the gesture.  Here is what I got:

  • New Studio Contour Palette
  • Contouring Blush & Bronzing Powder in Fiji (Matte)
  • New Smudge Pot Cream Eyeshadow in Wine Not
  • 2 Expert Liquid Liners in Charcoal (free)

Sephora

 

Sephora haul

Sephora haul

I was super happy to get a gift card to Sephora from my sister for my birthday that let me get some items that I’ve been eying for a long time.  Most notably, the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Dim Light.  I mentioned in my June Favorites post how much I have been enjoying Diffused Light.  I have been going back and forth in my head for the better part of a year about if I wanted to get Dim Light as well, or possibly the Palette.  Finally, I decided to bite the bullet and get Dim Light.  I can’t wait to use it.  Here is what else I got from Sephora:

  • Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder in Dim Light
  • Bite Beauty Luminous Crème Lipstick Duo in Fig/Date
  • Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tea Rose Tickle
  • Sephora Collection MicroSmooth Baked Blush Duo in Tangerine Tease
  • Sephora Beauty Insider 2015 Birthday Gift
Sephora Beauty Insider 2015 Birthday Gift

Sephora Beauty Insider 2015 Birthday Gift

Let’s take a closer look at the Sephora Beauty Insider Birthday Gift.  Many of you are probably familiar with it, but if you haven’t seen it, Sephora paired with NARS to give us two mini lip pencils.  In the box, which is free to anyone who signs up for Sephora’s Beauty Insider points program, we get mini versions of the Satin Lip Pencil in Rikugien and the Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Cruella.  I have personally never used a NARS lip pencil, so I am really happy to have them.  The shades are really pretty, and that lovely matte red is going to be gorgeous in the Fall and Winter months.  Sephora’s birthday gift certainly beats Ulta’s 2015 birthday gift (which has changed each quarter and is currently an Urban Decay Perversion Mascara), at least in my opinion.

Sephora Beauty Insider 2015 Birthday Gift

Sephora Beauty Insider 2015 Birthday Gift

(L) Rikugien and (R) Cruella

(L) Rikugien and (R) Cruella

And that is it for my Birthday haul.  I do have a couple things coming from Ulta, but they won’t be here until the end of the week.  Like I said, I didn’t go crazy this year as far as buying makeup.  I still had fun, and was able to get a couple things that I have really been wanting.  I hope that you liked my haul, and you will be seeing some of these products again in reviews.  But please, if there is anything specific that you want a review on, let me know in the comments below.