Thursday, April 28, 2011

Some internet shopping: Sigma, ELF and StrawberryNET

I think my "buying craze" has slowed down somewhat. Things are gradually coming together for our new house so I'm less stressed out. I was feeling a little guilty about using shopping as therapy, but my sister pointed out that I don't really go overboard or purchase items that I don't use, so I shouldn't feel TOO bad (I'm definitely not like Becky Bloomwood from Shopaholic ...yet!). Here are some of the internet items that I purchased recently:

 StrawberryNET - StrawberryNET.com contacted me with a discount code to try their site (To make things clear - I still had to pay for my purchase - I just received a promo code to use at checkout which gave me a % off my purchase). I had read about this Hong Kong-based website before on beauty forums so I knew that it was a reputable company. Here's what I ordered:
L'Occitane Shea Butter hand cream (CAD$ 14) - I've read rave reviews about this product - and since I'm always on the search for the perfect hand cream - I bought the travel version of this. Sadly I find this product just average. It has a pleasant (slightly old lady) scent, absorbs easily and provides adequate moisture. But I get the same result from Ponds cold cream. I will definitely use this product up (it's the perfect size for my handbag), but I will not repurchase.
Lip Fusion gloss in Full Frontal (CAD$ 14.50) - I've wanted to try these glosses ever since I read that Kim Kardashian uses them. I have not tested this yet, as I want to finish up my MAC gloss first (I don't like having too many glosses open at one time).
GOSH Everlasting Lips in Apricot Kiss (FREE) - StrawberryNET offers one free full-size product for every NEW customer (only on the first purchase). The selection changes frequently, when I ordered it was a choice of several Stila items and a couple of these GOSH glosses. I googled swatches and chose this,  I haven't tried it yet though.
KORRES Lip Butter in Wild Rose (CAD$ 13) - Another product I read raves about in the blogosphere. Korres lip butters are supposed to be amazingly moisturising.  I really wanted this product to work for me, as it provides such a pretty flush of colour - but unfortunately, it makes my lips peel. I'm going to try use this up with my Nivea lip balm underneath - but this kind of defeats the purpose as a moisturising, fuss-free, on-the-go product.

My thoughts on StrawberryNET
Advantages:
-although the prices are roughly comparable to Sephora, you don't have to pay taxes OR shipping on your items. If you are charged customs, you will be reimbursed.
-you can get items not available locally. I have already placed another order (this time there's no discount code). My second order is for Peter Thomas Roth mineral SPF 30 powder, which is currently not being shipped to Canadian Sephora customers.
-you get a free full-size gift - but only with your first order
-no minimum order for free shipping, so you can choose to purchase only deeply discounted items (My Fusion gloss is CAD$31 plus tax at Sephora, and only $14 at StrawberryNET.)
Disadvantages:
-If you don't love a product, your return options are limited (at Sephora, I would have just returned the KORRES Lip Butter). So I would only purchase items that I'm sure I'd love.
- The company is based in Hong Kong, so you may have to wait to receive your products. My first order took a little over a week to arrive, but its been nearly 2 weeks since I placed my second order and it has not yet been delivered.


ELF - I purchased 3 items from ELF when I ordered the 3 Coffee gel eyeliners for my giveaway.
Custom compact ($1) - this is like the MAC 4-pan palette, but it's much cheaper and comes with a mirror. MAC eyeshadow pans will fit in this, but I plan on removing the separators and creating a custom palette with depotted blush, highlighter and eyeshadow (will post pictures when I get around to doing this).
Gel eyeliner in Midnight ($3) - I wanted to try this because blue shades are supposed to complement brown eyes. When applied, it looks like black with a hint of blue sparkle - it's very pretty, but not a must-have - and too harsh for everyday wear. I *LOVE* the tiny angled brush they've included with this - it's perfect for patting on liner over your lash line. For comparison purposes, I've included my small-angled brush in the picture above. It has a more compact and less-angled brush head, but is otherwise quite comparable to the free tiny brush.
Angled eyeliner brush ($3) - Angled brushes are supposed to help create the perfect cat's eye look. I did find it easy to extend my liner with this brush - so it's a worthwhile purchase. However, I wish the brush tips would taper together in a point for a more precise line.
 .

Sigma - As I mentioned in a previous post I ordered the brush roll and F80 brush from Sigma.
F80 brush ($16)- Although the brush is well made, I haven't found a good use for it yet (since I'm not currently using liquid foundation). I tried using it for cream blush, but I prefer my MAC 129 for a more natural flushed look.
Brush Roll ($20)-  I'm LOVING my brush roll. I store all my "everyday" brushes in it - I love having all the brushes I need in one place. I prefer using a roll as I think my brushes stay cleaner than they would if they were displayed. And when I travel, I just need to carry a small make-up bag and take this roll with me. This roll is a must-buy - it's worth more than $20 - it's very well made and wipes clean so easily.

DISCLAIMER: I purchased ALL these products myself. I received a discount code for the StrawberryNET purchase, but selected all items myself, and was not under any obligation to provide a favourable review. As you can tell, I wrote my honest unbiased thoughts (as always!!!).

3 comments:

  1. i heard ot strawberrynet too, but often i just buy from sephora~~~

    i luv elf and i luv theior empty palette, cuz i put all my depotted sahdow there, adn they are cheap too

    ReplyDelete
  2. A free full sized gift is good enough reason to order from them at least once! How awesome. I received a Beauty Fusion 500 point gift from Sephora awhile back and loved all the products that came in it. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Jessy - I was surprised at the quality of the ELF palette - it's really well-made and not cheap-looking.

    Ashley - I love Sephora VIB points. I wish we had an Ulta, because I heard their points program is fantastic.

    ReplyDelete

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