If you have to buy it, get the best deal!
A list of all recent Ulta Beauty Breaks.
Ulta typically releases a Beauty Break every Wednesday morning from 10am-2pm PST. A Beauty Break is a GWP that is only available for a very short period. There will be select Wednesdays where they do not release one and other times when they pop up at a different day or time, like Monday evening, Saturday morning, Sunday morning, and more. While Ulta does email (those who receive emails), these offers and others usually appear in the Gift With Purchase Section before emails go out. Emails stagger, so better Beauty Breaks may run out of inventory before some people receive their emails. People on the east cost have a better chance of scoring a Beauty Break thanks to the time difference. If you wake up and notice an incredible Beauty Break, do not sit on it. These Beauty Breaks never make it to the end of the timeline and weaker ones at times get extended past the deadline. This order was 3x points.
This is an example of one that lasted past the expiration time. Ulta will usually extend the time a little to get rid of all inventory, but they eventually cut the offer even with leftover inventory. In those cases, the same promotion could pop up again. You can still add this one to your cart (as there is leftover inventory), but it will not remove the $40 charge. Charges only disappear when you’ve added enough to your cart on an active offer. The Beauty Break only required a $40 purchase, which was $5 over the temporary $35 free shipping minimum. It has risen back to $50 since this purchase. While Beauty Breaks can go for as little as $35, the better ones can usually go over the $50 shipping minimum.
This 4 piece NYX Beauty Break featuring all full-sized products includes: a 0.18oz Cheek Contour Duo Palette in Two to Tango ($8.99), a 0.2oz Full Throttle Shadow in Take Over Control ($9.99), a 0.32oz Le Frou Frou Mascara in Black ($5.99), and a 0.08oz Full Throttle Lipstick in Trickster ($6.99).
Even though I consider NYX one of the better drugstore brands, I was not super thrilled when I saw this Beauty Break announced. This is an occasion where I wanted to order the item in the order so much that I would have purchased it with any Beauty Break. After receiving everything, I am actually happy with this Beauty Break.
The Full Throttle Lipstick in Trickster is actually a beautiful fuchsia color. This is one of my favorite lipstick colors, and I like that this is matte. I rarely purchase matte shades, so it is nice to receive some to remind me I do like them.
The swatch is beautiful and pigmented. It is solid and opaque.
It skipped a bit when I applied it, but I was able to fill in the spaces. This formula reminds me of dry lipstick. Once it sets, it looks like dry lipstick, and there is very little transfer when you touch your lips. Unlike liquid lipstick, it does transfer when I eat. The formula is not as drying as liquid lipstick, but it is far from moisturizing. Although I really like the way matte lips look, I have yet to find a liquid lipstick or regular lipstick that is matte and moisturizing. I will keep looking, because I know it’s out there. This is not a lipstick I would purchase, but if you like mattes and want something a little easier to wear than liquid lipstick, this is worth a shot.
The Full Throttle Shadow in Take Over Control is a beautiful neutral palette. I am to a point where I have so many neutral palettes that only extremely special looking ones interest me. All four shades in this could easily stand on their own, because they are that beautiful.
Not only do the shades coordinate beautifully together, but they blend with one another wonderfully. Application was a breeze, because everything was smooth. Although the colors were not as vibrant at the end of the day when I removed them, they were all crease free.
For this look, I used the copper-gold shade on my lid, the matte mauve shade in my crease, the peachy pink shade to highlight, and the charcoal shade in my outer V. Using the shades this way created a bronzy version of a neutral look.
The shade on the top right looks different swatched than it does in the pan. It may actually be a little more special than is appears. I cannot wait to try these to see if they were as beautifully as they look in swatches.
The Cheek Contour Duo Palette in Two to Tango is not suited to my skin tone. If the lighter shade was a little more shimmery, I could try it as a highlighter. It is too close to my natural skin color to use as a contour or blush. I’m not quite sure how to use the matte orange. This will not flatter me as a highlight or contour, so I am hoping it works as blush.
For this orange-peach look, other than the elf lipstick Charming, I decided to try both powders. I used Kevyn Aucoin Candlelight for my highlighter (which is one of my favorites). The lighter shade was used for blush. It actually showed up a lot better than I expected it to based on the swatch. There was a definite peach-blush feel. Like all powder blushes on my dry cheeks, it did not last long. As I feared, the matte orange makes a terrible contour powder. After miserably failing to contour my nose (why it looks strange), I used a light hand and tried it as a bronzer. It is just not a flattering shade on me, even as a bronzer, but I will try this again as a blush.
I did use the darker shade as a crease color for my Pixi Mesmerizing Mineral Duo in Apricot Glow. It complimented those shades beautifully and helped provide depth with a matter color I was looking for. Along with the shadows, it also remained crease free all day. Using it as a shadow is a great way to use a shade that is too awkward for my face.
I selected the skincare sampler and got my usual 0.05oz Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer and 0.005oz Benefit Professional. It does not even matter what I select any more. Those are the two samples I get with most of my orders lately.
The Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Blush Palette was nicer than I expected, so I’d gone back and forth on whether I wanted to purchase the Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Eyeshadow Palette. It retailed for $58, and while that is only $4 more than a Naked palette, I did not see enough unique shades to justify it. This actually has the same total amount of shadow as a Naked palette. While Naked palettes have 12 0.05oz shades for a total of 0.6oz, these have 15 0.04oz shades for a total of 0.6oz. That makes this $96.67 an ounce at full-price compared to the $90 an ounce for a Naked palette.
I decided to purchase it once it went on sale for $39. The sales price makes the set $65 an ounce, which is incredible for most eyeshadows, especially Urban Decay.
I did not know that the Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Lipstick samples came inside the eyeshadow palette. This was a nice bonus, because I almost purchased Rock Steady and Firebird on more than one occasion. The samples are 0.005oz, which is probably enough for a couple of uses, but they will not last long after I remove the protective foil coating. Most of these sold out, except 714, so I am not going to swatch these yet. Once I decide to open them, I will swatch them and add pictures as I wear them. Hopefully, I do not fall in love with any, because I do not want something I cannot buy. Ex-Boyfriend looks like a typical pink, so I should be able to dupe that.
The palette is beautiful and sturdy metal.
There is a large mirror that takes up the entire lid.
I would not call this a typical neutral palette, because more than half of the shades are too light to qualify as neutrals on most people. Gwen is very fair, so this makes sense. It also has a beautiful pink and blue randomly thrown in. The consistency and quality of these shadows are not all the same. Some are smoother than others, as you can see from the pictures and that does translate in the swatches.
The shadows on the first two rows would make excellent neutrals on very fair skin. There is only one (Stark) that does not appear well on my light skin, so this could even work well for light skin. I think anyone with medium to dark skin would have a hard time getting most of these shades to show up nicely, so I’d advise them to pass.
Row one includes: Blonde (pale beige with pink iridescent shift), Bathwater (pale beige with gold pearl), Skimp (pale nude satin), Steady (medium rose with metallic gold shift), and Punk (reddish-brown matte). From swatches alone, Skimp was the weakest and Steady was the strongest. Punk was hard to apply.
Row two includes: Baby (cool metallic rose), Anaheim (light taupe-brown matte), Stark (nude-pink matte), Zone (medium brown matte), and Serious (smoky gray with iridescent floating pearl). Stark was the weakest (not just because I can barely see it either) and Zone was the strongest.
Row three includes: Pop (pale coral with iridescent sparkle), Harajuku (metallic blue-pink with iridescent micro-shimmer), Danger (deep metallic royal blue with blue micro-sparkle), 1987 (bright metallic yellow-gold), and Blackout (blackest black matte). This row did not have any obvious stars or weak links, but it is important to note that 1987 was hard to apply and Blackout had a lot of fall-out. That much fall-out with such a pigmented shade could create a mess, so I will apply my foundation last if I use that shade.
Another important note on the third row is Danger stained my skin. It is not even as dark as Blackout, but that one came out fine. Use it with caution. I love the blue (Evidence), which is not as dark as this from the Urban Decay Smoked Palette (no longer sold by authorized retailers). If I am looking for a dark blue that will not stain, I’d reach for Urban Decay Evidence before Urban Decay Danger. They are both incredibly beautiful though.
I used Harajuku on my lid, Zone in my crease, 1987 on my brow bone, and Bathwater to highlight. Pinks and yellows usually pair beautifully. The pink shade was not as easy to work with as I would have liked. It was a bit chunky and had some consistency issues. With a lot of packing and blending, I was able to get the look I was going for. The other shades blended with more ease. This look stayed vibrant and crease free all day.
Harajuku is the beautiful pink in this palette. It looks beautifully in the pan and swatched equally beautifully. I wanted to create a look with it as the main focus. Sadly, my shaky hands got in the way when I created this cat eye, and I inadvertently made the thick, uneven eyeliner the centerpiece.
I wanted to use the palette again with Danger as the focus point. After watching a lot of tutorials, I decided to apply shadows the way many of them do with concealer instead of primer. It had been a while since I tried that. This is my official reminder that I need primer and should stop trying to skip it.
This look used Danger on the lid, Zone as a transition shade, Punk in the crease and outer V, Bathwater to highlight, and Serious on the lash lines. It looked beautiful before the creasing, so I am disappointed I did not use primer.
I was disappointed in myself for not using primer on the second look and messing up the eyeliner on the first look. Makeup application is not my forte (although I love it), because I believe it is an art form. An artist I am not. Anyway, I figured I owed this palette another shot.
This look used Pop on the lid, Anaheim as a transition color, Zone in the crease, Punk in the outer V, and Blonde to highlight.
This was my favorite look so far, and it used all neutrals (even though the neutral on the shade is a glitter-shimmer. I had some slight creasing in the far corner of my left eye, but it was barely noticeable. It looked almost as bright and beautiful when I removed it as when I applied it.
With 1987 as my focal point on my lids, I created this toned down look. I used Anaheim as my transition shade, Zone in my crease, Blonde to highlight Punk in my outer V and lower lash line, and Zero on my upper lash line. This look did not crease at all and was as sharp when I removed it as when I applied it.
The eyeshadow palette was only $1 under the Beauty Break minimum, but I added two items. There were a few items, not listed in the sale section, that were a lot cheaper than other scents from the same collection. I got the full-size 10oz Ulta Dreamy Love Romance Silky Smooth Body Lotion for $2.88 and the full-size 10oz Ulta Romance Creamy Body Wash Endless Passion for $3.13. All of the other scents are still $11.50 each, so I am unsure if they plan on discontinuing these or what the reason is for the great prices. The other scents are buy two, get two free, but the discount does not apply to the items on sale.
A lot of Platinum members received a free Benefit Goof Proof Brow Pencil in the mail. It was a surprise, because Ulta never announced it and the lucky recipients figured it out as they opened their mail. I was not one of those lucky ones, but I did receive an email to receive it for free with a purchase. The offer was on my Ulta page until it expired on the 11th, but I did not receive the order until after the offer expired (so I could not present it sooner).
It lists the size as a 0.003oz pencil. I am guessing it is actually 0.03oz. The full-size is 0.1oz (like the brow gels). Samples of the brow gels are 0.03oz. This pencil retracts and when I extended it all the way, I noticed this looks bigger than a 0.003oz pencil. The new designs on Benefit’s Brow Products are fun. I like the Gimme Brow Gel I received from Birchbox and have considered picking up the Ka-Brow from Sephora since I swatched it at the VIB Rouge event recently.
I’m actually glad I swatched brow shades this before I received it, because the shade Ulta would have sent me (the one they suggested in their email) was too dark for me. Shade 2 in light looks like the right color for my dirty blonde hair.
I really like a more natural looking brow, and I think this pencil is a great tool for achieving this look. It is thicker than the average pencil, so it reminds me more of a cream in a pencil. When I brush this out and top with Gimme Brow, it fills in more areas that Gimme Brow does on its own. Most of my looks lately have been Gimme Brow on its own, including all of the looks above. This is a little nicer, so I will probably start using Gimme Brow with this pencil (unless I am in a hurry and I will use Gimme Brow on its own).
I recently signed up for a TopCashBack Account. To activate that account, I used it for this purchase. It was only paying 2% at the time where Mrrebates was offering 5%. As of publishing time, I had received 2%, $0.90. TopCashBack initially denied my claim. They want requests submitted in seven days, but it took me longer than seven days to realize they matched. Thankfully, I contacted customer service within the seven days asking about activation and mentioned the higher amount. After the denial, I reminded them of that contact, and they approved it.
Ulta is running a 3x points promotion for Platinum members through 06/18/16. That offer applied to this order, which is better than my last order which had no multiplier. It is better to order with multipliers when possible, but some orders are worth it without one.
I will continue to post offers I am aware of, so no worries if you happen upon this post after the offers above expire. If you have questions about any Ulta Coupon, I go over all types. Targeted Offers are exclusive to UltaMate Members, so I do recommend joining. New members get $10 of their first purchase with a referral. Remember to check all Ulta offers before placing an online order, because there are always general or brand specific offers that are not targeted. Deal stacking is not only allowed, it’s encouraged. See all Ulta articles. Read Tips For Getting the Best Deal at Ulta. View my main page for the guide map to the site and deeper deal exploration.
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