Sephora VIB Sale Shopping Haul!

Sephora VIB Sale Shopping Haul

It's one of my favorite events of the year - the Sephora VIB sale!! While I'm a frequent Sephora shopper, I do my big shopping sprees around the sale since, especially for my bigger ticket purchases. If you are VIB Rouge, get your shopping on with a 15% discount now through the 16th. And the VIB sale continues for the non-Rouge babes next week. I love the sale not only because that 15% seems small but really adds up, it gives me a chance to stock up on old favorites and try fun new launches. 

Check out some of the items I'm adding to cart, including that coveted Fenty Beauty Body Lava, and the brand new Tarte Mermaid Makeup Brushes!

If you aren't Rouge yet but are wondering if it's worth the it, the answer in short is YES! Not only do you get early access to the sale and deeper discounts, there is a laundry list of perks, from pre-releases to free in-store makeovers anytime you want! Check out Sephora.com for the full list and how to qualify! 

What I'm Buying in the Sephora VIB sale!

Me being a Sephora junkie

Me being a Sephora junkie

You guys know I obsess over all things beauty. I love a beat face and the only thing I'm  OCD about is my skin care routine. I stock up on favorite products 2 times a year, during the magical time known as the Sephora VIB sale. Sephora NEVER has sales, except for these time periods, so now is the time to stock up and save, or try products you've been curious about while they are discounted Here's what I'll be adding to cart this week when the sale kicks off! 

The T.L.C Sukari Babyfacial

This peel has been a cult favorite among beauty editors since it launched! It's constantly flying off the shelves, so this is the product I'll be going after most aggressively! I scored a sample of in one of the Sephora weekly special deluxe sample giveaways and I have to say it is worth the hype. The tiny tube I got gave me about 3 uses, and my skin was noticeably brighter and tighter. It does sting a little so if you have dry or sensitive skin, use with caution, but this has potential to be a holy grail for my oily skin, so I want to see what effect it will have after continued use.  

 

An Eyeshadow Palette

I'm pretty desperately in need for a go-to palette, and after some considered research I've narrowed it down to either the Too Faced Natural Love or the Anastasia Modern Renaissance. I love the deep, dramatic wines and burgundies of the Modern Renaissance, but the Too Faced palette has so many more colors, and the soft pinks and champagne shimmers are so romantic! I'm really torn and def don't need both so help me decide! 

 

Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara

I'm an eyelash lover, but hands down this is the best mascara on the market! For days when a full strip is too much, this really beefs up your natural lashes, but is soft enough that it doesn't make them stiff or brittle, even after layering on several coats. 

A Face Primer

Primer is a must! Especially for oily skin, especially in summer! I've been testing several new formulas and have narrowed it down to these two. The Mineral Veil leaves a soft, natural finish, while the Nars formula is more smooth and matte. I love both, but am thinking Nars may be a better fit for the humid New York summers. Or I'll just buy smaller versions of both of them. 

 

The Maison Margiela Replica Discovery Set

I love the entire Margiela Replica line, so this set is right up my alley! Each tube is travel friendly and the scents can be worn individually or layered for a unique scent. I'm super picky about my fragrances, but am excited about adding these to my limited collection.

If you are a Sephora VIB make sure to shop the sale when it opens to get first dibs on your fave products!  

How to Get Paid to Go on an Island Vacation

The US Virgin Islands are like paradise on earth. Pristine beaches, top notch cuisine and a host of land and sea activities, all within easy reach and direct flights. Plus there are no language barriers to consider and you don’t even need a passport. You’d never expect a place like this to have to pay tourists to visit, but that is exactly what’s happening in 2017! The US Virgin Islands are celebrating their Centennial, the  100th anniversary of the US taking control of the islands from Denmark. To honor that history, the islands are offering visitors who travel there in 2017 $300, just to enjoy a vacation! Spend a few days exploring the islands amazing beaches, hiking, and trying some of the many water sports or island adventures.

Of course there are some strings attached to the amazing deal. You can’t spend the money anywhere you like. The goal is to get travelers to learn about the islands’ rich culture and history, not just get wasted on the beach from drinking too much rum punch. So you can use your $300 credit for eco-tours, museums, kayaking adventures, culinary tours, or other cultural activities. This actually helps you have a more dynamic island vacation, and some culturally rich experiences in between partying and poolside lounging.

So how do you actually get the deal? Just book your trip for 3 or more nights on the official tourism site, VisitUSVI.com. You’ll just have to book by October 31st for travel between January 2nd and December 31st 2017, and stay at one of the participating hotels. The list includes everything from sprawling 5 star properties to charming bed and breakfasts, so there will be an option for every travel style! Once you book, the tourism board will send you $300 in paper vouchers that you use just like cash at any of the participating hotels or tour vendors. You can time your trip to catch one of the many celebratory events, such as Transfer Day on March 31st, when the islands were officially ceded to the US. Or just imagine spending Christmas or Thanksgiving in Caribbean fashion. There are 3 islands to choose from, so stay on one and explore the others. Just book sooner than later. Even though the deadline isn’t until October, the more people hear about the deal and rush to book, the more expensive flights and hotels will get!

Full list of hotels

St. Crois:

·       The Buccaneer

·       Caravelle Hotel & Casino

·       Chenay Bay Beach Resort

·       Club Comanche Hotel

·       Divi Carina Bay Resort & Casino

·       Holger Danske Hotel

·       Mt. Victory Camp

·       Renaissance Carambola Beach Resort

·       The Palms at Pelican Cove

·       Tamarind Reef Resort

·       Sand Castle on the Beach

 St. John:

·       Caneel Bay Resort

·       Coconut Coast Villas

·       Concordia Eco-Resort

·       Star Villas

·       The Westin St. John Resort

St. Thomas:

·       At Home in the Tropics

·       Bellavista Bed & Breakfast

·       Bolongo Bay Beach Resort

·       Frenchman’s Reef Marriott Resort

·       Galleon House

·       The Green Iguana Hotel

·       Lindbergh Bay Hotel & Villas

·       Secret Harbour Beach Resort

·       Two Sandals Bed & Breakfast

·       VI Campgrounds

·       Windward Passage Hotel

Hope I'll see you there! 

How to Shop Like a Street Style Star

Photo by Priscilla Reyes

Photo by Priscilla Reyes

You’ve probably wondered how your favorite fashion bloggers always look so stylish. The answer very well could be a generous bank account and several brand partnerships. But a lot of the fashion and street style bloggers I know rely on secret weapon websites that are even cheaper than fast fashion chains like Zara and H&M. It may be scary ordering from a foreign website with an almost impossible return policy, but I’ve recently started exploring these sites and consulted with some of my blogger friends on their shopping tips. Here’s how to navigate some of the best new fast fashion sites and not hate everything you end up with. If you’ve never heard of Romwe, Shein, or Choies, get ready to add these babies to your bookmarks.

The  Romwe  coat I fell for, shot by Priscilla Reyes

The Romwe coat I fell for, shot by Priscilla Reyes

Get Social

Start by browsing the website and picking out your favorite pieces, like you would for any other retailer. But before you check-out, browse their Instagram, their hashtags, and tagged pictures to see how people style their merch. You can get a great idea of how the end product will look on a few different people to decide if it’s for you.

Choies  Red Off the Shoulder Dress, shot by Eddie Woods

Choies Red Off the Shoulder Dress, shot by Eddie Woods

Do Some Research

In addition to insta-stalking, Google the product name or description to see if you can find some reviews or comments from other sites or blogs. You may end up finding a detailed description of fit, color, shipping, and any other info you may need to make your final decision. I saw this red dress on several bloggers with different body types before I finally caved and bought it, and luckily it looked perfect on me! 

Choies  Black Asymmetrical Dress, shot by Eddie Woods

Choies Black Asymmetrical Dress, shot by Eddie Woods

Assume You Won’t Return It

You may be used to the free returns and very generous return policies most retailers offer.  A lot of these sites do allow returns, but when you read the fine print, the terms make a return or exchange costly and difficult. We’re talking you are on the hook for return shipping to China and restocking fees. If you end up with an item that doesn’t fit or isn’t what you expected, you’d be better off trading it at a local consignment shop, selling it online, or giving it to a friend who may like it. Just keep that in mind when you are placing your orders! When I ordered this black dress I was worried about it showing too much cleavage and I hated the included black patent belt, but I found a way to style it that I love. 

The sweater  Romwe  called a dress

The sweater Romwe called a dress

Choose Carefully

Since you will more or less be stuck with whatever you purchase, shop carefully and attentively! Pay attention to the sizing and measurements, care instructions and fabric content. You won’t be able to buy multiple sizes or colors then decide to keep some and return the rest. So go in with a clear head and few distractions so you can really choose items that you will love. I’ve ordered from Romwe and Choices several times and have only been disappointed once, by a knit “dress” that was marked one size and barely covered my butt. It makes for a cute sweater with jeans though! Happy shopping! 

 

This post was originally written by me for Party Mean