If you have to buy it, get the best deal!
I’m not really sure what is going on at Sephora this year. It was not long ago when I wanted almost every favorites set it released. In 2018, I noticed prices going up and sizes going down. While some kits worth purchasing did get released, and I did grab some, especially the Sun Safety Kit and the Give Me More Lip Kit, no other year missed the mark as much as this one. My thoughts on the Superstars sets, 2018 and Everyday Must Haves, remain unchanged, but I found a kit that makes those look like good deals in comparison. The Beauty Vault: 12 Days of Makeup released and I am extremely disappointed. We are in the time of year where people are looking for a nice advent calendar or something similar. This is not it.
I have a love/hate relationship with advent calendars. Most sell you deluxe products for way more than they are really worth and essentially convince buyers that they are getting a deal. In some ways, they are. Many brands sell their deluxe products and if you purchased them separately, you would save money purchasing an advent calendar. It is also a good way to try a bunch of things you do not already own or grab travel sizes of things you already own. Plus, advent calendars are fun. However, the company just sold you a stash of products it gives for free with purchases throughout most of the year by slapping it in some pretty packaging. This is not advertised as an advent calendar, but it does say open a door a day in the description. When you can get 20 deluxe products in four months of a $10 subscription (so $40 or $50 for 25 items), why would you pay $90 for 21 with one full-size item?
The $90 Beauty Vault: 12 Days of Makeup Contains:
– 0.06 oz/ 2 mL bareMinerals Gen Nude Patent Lip Lacquer in Everything
– 0.16 oz/ 5 mL BECCA Velvet Blurring Primer
– 0.0009 oz/ 0.026 g Benefit Cosmetics Precisely, My Brow Pencil in Shade 03 Medium
– 0.09 oz/ 2.55 g Bobbi Brown Bronzing Powder in Medium-2
– 0.2 oz/ 6 mL Buxom Lash Mascara
– 0.05 oz/ 1.5 mL Ciaté London Glitter Flip in Infamous
– 0.04 oz/ 1.2 g CLINIQUE Chubby Stick Moisturizing Lip Colour Balm in Woppin’ Watermelon
– 0.07 oz/ 2.2 g Fresh Sugar Dream Advanced Therapy Lip Treatment
– 0.07 oz/ 2 g Grande Cosmetics GrandeLIPS: Hydrating Lip Plumper in Clear Gloss
– 0.12 oz/ 3.5 g Hourglass Caution Extreme Lash Mascara
– 0.1 oz/ 3 mL Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Outlaw
– 0.06 oz/ 2 mL Lancôme Monsieur Big Waterproof Mascara Big Volume All Day Wear
– 0.12 oz/ 3.5 g Laura Mercier Translucent Loose Setting Powder
– 0.02 oz/ 0.7 g MAKE UP FOREVER Artist Color Pencil in 714
– 0.05 oz/ 1.7 mL Marc Jacobs Beauty Enamored Hi-Shine Lip Lacquer Lipgloss in Sugar Sugar
– 0.25 oz/ 7.1 mL Milk Makeup Holographic Stick in Stardust
– 0.06 oz/ 1.8 g NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Do Me Baby
– 0.06 oz/ 1.7 g NUDESTIX Nudies Glow in Illumi-Naughty
– 0.17 oz/ 5 mL Smashbox Super Fan Fanned-Out Mascara
– 0.169 oz/ 5 mL tarte Rainforest of the Sea Radiance Drops
– 0.17 oz/ 4.8 g Too Faced Better than Sex Mascara
– 2.2 oz/ 62 g Velour Lashes Another Shot of Whispie Silk Lashes
The lashes are the only full-size item in this set, and they do retail for $26. In one place, it says the other 21 items are deluxe. I see another claim that the brow pencil, eyeliner, and liquid glitter eyeshadow are full-size. Those were the full-size items in the Superstars Everyday Must Haves kit, which I did a similar article on. Someone clearly copied and pasted the formatting and forgot to delete that claim for this listing. There is not even a liquid glitter eyeshadow in this set. It does have a brow pencil and an eyeliner, but neither are full-size. If you are reading this and do not see the misprint on the Sephora site, it means Sephora finally corrected it. As soon as I see its correction, I will update this paragraph. For now, it is important to note because it will inadvertently dupe people to buy it thinking it has 4 full-size items.
If the lashes interest you, and you do not mind paying $64 for 21 samples, you might want this set. I’ve discussed before that my ceiling for a set of samples is $40 to $45. If I am paying a dime over that, I need some full-size products to pull the added weight. When Ulta consistently puts out kits larger than this as a GWP, I cannot see myself paying this much. Yes, Ulta sets are a mixture of high-end and drugstore, so I would be even more upset with Ulta if it tried to sell me something like this for $90. It was not that long ago that the most expensive set that Sephora sold with all or mostly samples was $45. Bigger sets with this price tag always had at least 3-4 full-size items. Seeing a set for $90 with only one full-size item is a blow, and I hope buyers reject it. As long as we continue to reject these overpriced sets, Sephora will get that we will not pay absurd amounts for samples it gets for free or nearly free from the brands.
The one thing this set does have going for it is it does have some new items that have not been offered in other kits, as promo codes, the Sephora Play subscription, or as 100-point perks. That means about half of these items would be new to me. There is a good chance your recipient will have a lot of these if s/he is also a beauty lover. If the set was much more reasonably priced, I would have considered it. Many items are things I would not mind trying. For this set, I would need it to cost no more than $50. Yes, that is higher than my $45 ceiling, but I am willing to pay the extra amount for the lashes.
If you have a budget and are considering purchasing a set of mostly samples (this or something similar) for your gift recipient, I would suggest looking into a gift subscription. They can get more samples for less and enjoy the samples over multiple months. Subscriptions really are the gift that keeps on giving. Of course, it is your money, so you can buy a set like the one above. I’d recommend giving your recipient the receipt if you do purchase something like this so they can exchange it for anything more worthwhile. There is a chance they may actually want to keep this and if that is the case, they could just toss the receipt.
A kit Sephora put out recently that is a GREAT DEAL is the Holy Sheet set. That is only $48 and a better deal considering every item in it is technically full-size. It is still available, and it never lasts this long. See its article for more details (if it is gone by the time you read this). Most gift recipients would love that. The VIB sale is happening now, so VIB members can even purchase it at 20% off.
Sephora does not inform a single Beauty Insider of all deals. Certain offers are targeted and others have different purchase minimums based on the code. Remember to check New Offers and/or Recycled Offers before placing an online order. If you’re spending over $25, you can add a promo code to any order. See all Rewards Bazaar and Sephora articles. Read Tips For Getting the Best Deal When Shopping Sephora. View my main page for the guide map to the site and deeper deal exploration.
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