This holiday season I’ve decided change up my annual sales guide from listing sales and recommending products you can get there, to telling you exactly what I’m using the sales to get, and how I’m shopping them.
My Beauty Plan
I’ve decided the major splurge items are the expensive-but-must tries, including a full fledged LED face mask, and a moisturizer fueling a newly minted billion dollar company. I did some digging, and HigherDose Red Light Face Mask, at 20% off, is the one I’ve locked down for LED face masks, it’s a full face device that I can just leave on while I do other things (or get some shut eye), and has powerful red light therapy from a company that specializes in therapeutic devices.
I’ve also decided to use these sales to find Augustinus Bader for as low as I can find. And luckily, most of the line is included at Violet Grey’s 25% off sale! I ended up getting The Cream, which really started it all, and their most powerful, The Serum, in the refill (because I like nice things… but will absolutely purchase the cheaper refill version), which basically saved me $90. I also picked up the Vyrao High Five Discovery Set, as I have been so curious about this clean fragrance brand from fashion ‘it’ girl Yasmin Sewell. The fragrances all sound so interesting, but I haven’t seen them reviewed too extensively, so rather than take a chance on a full size (a couple regrets when I did that with Sigil), can’t go wrong with trying the entire line, at 25%! I also picked up African Botanics Neroli Infused Marula Oil, because it’s so beautiful. And I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it since my bottle fell and broke before I was done. Also, I do want something to use for when I go more pared down to give me skin a break from super-active serums.
A brand I wanted that wasn’t in the Violet Grey sale (and excluded from MOST sales) is Byredo, but LUCKILY — I discovered them on sale at SSENSE, where most items are 20% off! I picked up Rose of No Man’s Land, Casablanca Lily (from their Night Veils collection of even higher-end perfumery that uses more actual plant material), and two items from their makeup collection that I had been waiting to try, a tinted lip balm in Rosa, and their gold-oyster shelled eye shadow palette in Dysco. Not only did the Byredo makeup make a splash for their otherworldly packaging, they were developed by Isamaya Ffrench, who is sort of the coolest makeup artist in the game right now.
Naturium has become one of those brands I always stop by during their annual sales. They just offer so much value for great products. You might not be able to tell since I’ve basically been splurging on moisturizers (see Augustinus Bader, above), but I actually LOVE Naturium’s moisturizers which are every bit as good, if not better, than the high-end creams. And they regularly retail for around $25 for a 1.7 oz jar, so I stocked up on their creams at their 25% off sale. These are the creams I’ll use with abandon in between my expensive creams, because they’re just as good and I can really soak it in. I got their Intense Overnight Sleeping Cream as a nice winter option to bring my skin back at night, while Plant Ceramide Rich Moisture Cream is the daytime option. Neither are thick, nor heavy in my opinion, they remind me of classic lotions that my mom used to put on in the 90s. I also planned ahead for warmer weather, and got the Niacinamide Gel Cream moisturizer which is a light cream that feels like it goes on like water.
Also, I stocked up on their Retinol Serum, while I loved the Paula’s Choice Retinol Treatment, it’s nearly 3x the price, and I notice similar results. Also the ingredients in Naturium’s Retinol Serum are cleaner. A bonus is that when your order hits $100, they’ll include a free Vitamin C serum!
The other brand I always shop is YÜLI, which is a staple in my routine, and behind many of my transformative, holy grail favorites that I always keep on hand. Most importantly, it’s basically the only time anywhere there is a discount on YÜLI. Their sale is 20% once you go over $150, which is perfect for me because I have multiple units of Ambrosia Beauty Nectar in my plans. For anyone under $150, it’s 15%. Ambrosia Beauty Nectar is one of those best-of, advanced products (think liquids mimetic to amniotic sac fluid, clinical marine pharmaceutical-antioxidant responsible for longevity, etc.) that makes me relieved for sales, because I get to stockpile it. I’m also getting multiples of Halcyon Cleanser, which remains my go-to, in addition to M.E. Skin Fuel, which is I think is similar in approach to Vintner’s Daughter’s face oil, but with ingredients I prefer (no EO’s, citrus, photosensitizing oils). Comparatively, this does everything the VD oil does, and I’d go further to say it’s a better anti-inflammatory, and better for sensitive skin. At half the price.
I also love Liquid Courage, which is a suped up innovative serum that is face oil, Vitamin C serum, and antioxidant serum in one. Ingredients list readers will keenly note that this contains the golden CE+Ferulic Acid complex, originally put on the map by Skinceuticals, except YÜLI moves everything forward a bit: a liposomal Vitamin C that is 6x more effective, a chiral Vitamin E, and a 100% plant derived Ferulic Acid. While I like all their elixirs, and always use YÜLI elixirs, I’m getting multiples of Metamorphic Elixir too, because my mindset is go for top performance, and this is their anti-aging, deep hydration elixir that is beautifully made.
MIJA’s just released their new creamer, which I reviewed recently (if you’d like to check it out: read it here). And now they’ve followed it up with a 25% off sale, which is the perfect time because I had been planning to move my Superstar greens powder habit over to a subscription. Superstar really had consolidated so much of my ingestible ritual. I also got another bag of Galaxy Cloud Creamer because my partner had been scooping out the creamer into a ziplock baggie to take to work, and I felt like “we don’t have to live like this.” Since the review, I also notice that my sleep quality has improved significantly.
As I made my shopping plan, I realized it was lacking in haircare. So Materiae to the rescue with 30% off (FRIDAY30). This quiet bastion of niche beauty finds always comes through with big deals, albeit their selection can be limited (e.g. their Costa Brazil selection is just 3 products). However, their haircare is where they shine! I got the David Mallett Le Volume Shampoo and their matching jar of Volume Hair Mask, which I thought was so clever because it’s like a wearable conditioner that also works as a light styling cream. I also got the Sachajuan Overnight Hair Repair which helps strengthen hair overnight with ‘Ocean Silk Technology.’ Finally, because it was there! I got the Cire Trudon – Giambattista Valli Candle and was surprised when the discount applied successfully. I consider that such a find.
With The Nue Co.’s 30% off sale, I’m always half and half: half tried and true, half new things to try! You all know I love and swear by their Functional Fragrance, and I’ll also be revisiting Skin Filter because I’m sort of into the idea of ingestible food-retinol. I’m adding Skin Hydrator, a pill with ingredients like collagen and ingestible hyaluronic acid that helps the skin hydrate itself. If we’re using the luxurious creams, drinking the hydrating tonics, I figure Skin Hydrator will help bring it all together.
Finally, I’ve decided to try The Nue Co’s Hair Growth Collection. It’s a two piece with a topical SUPA THICK scalp serum designed to reduce shedding, and an ingestible Growth Phase, that promotes hair growth and thicker, fuller hair. Here’s why I’m getting both: I think if we’re going non-medicated, the approach has to be more intensive than what we’re currently getting (sorry, Nutrafol). The inside AND outside approach is one that I think, if coordinated well, can work. I’m at the age where hair is going from “more fine” to “ah shit, why have I been losing so much hair?” and it’s a similar story with so many girlfriends. Regardless of whether it’s stress, or hormones, these products address it within 90 days. Sold, at least on a first run at 30% off.
Hope this was an informative, useful, and enjoyable sales guide! Please let me know what you’re picking up.