It’s time for the Best in Beauty for 2019! Part of the reason we try new things is the thrill of the hunt. We all want to discover a holy grail or made for me product and are willing to gamble on the unknown. At times, the risk pays off, and we find things worth talking about. Those are the items we want to shout about from the rooftops. Deal shoppers do not always try things the moment they release, because we like to read reviews and wait for sales. The items on this list were not necessarily released in 2019. I did not discover their greatness until 2019 though. This is a list of the 10 best products I tried for the first time this year. While it is amazing when we find drugstore items that perform as well as high-end ones, and I sample products from low-end to luxury with that goal in mind, this list is only indicative of the best products (not the best in their price range).
Winter is officially here, so it is time to go over my favorites from the 2019 fall season. I like to call these my core collection items, because I find myself reaching for them over similar products in my stockpiles. These are items I am still working on, so they will not make the Empties article for this season. Each is still worthy of discussion, so this is the place I like to do that. Items I am still in love with once I empty them become FabuFinds. While I cannot promise I will ever finish these (some products expire before I can empty them) and I cannot promise I will still love them enough to label them as FabuFinds upon completion, I loved them throughout this season. Many of these items are serious contenders for my Best of the Year article. There were six items I really enjoyed this summer.
It’s time for my December 2019 Sephora Play review. Play! by Sephora is a subscription box that offers five deluxe beauty samples and a bonus foil packet or perfume vial for $10 a month plus tax. Shipping is free. Only items sold at Sephora come inside the Play! box so most items are from well-known, high-end brands. While Sephora does carry a few low-end and luxury brands, they do not really appear in the subscription boxes. There is not a traditional rewards program with this box so you cannot get points for referring friends or writing reviews. It does award 10 Beauty Insider points to Beauty Insiders, 12.5 points to VIB members, and 15 points to VIB Rouge members. This Play! box also applies $10 toward your purchase minimum to maintain your Beauty Insider status. Visit my Sephora page for descriptions on points and status. The $10 charge processes immediately for new subscribers and from the 1st through the 4th for succeeding months. Boxes usually ship from the 11th through the 15th.
The Sephora Favorites Give Me More Lip Kit was marked down to $47 on 11/21/18. I thought this was a great deal at $68, so I think it is a steal at the new price. After the somewhat disappointing Superstars Kit and the lackluster Superstars Everyday Must Haves Kit, my expectations for the Sephora Favorites Give Me More Lip were low. Thankfully, this exceeds my expectations, because I think this is a pretty good set. I have no problem paying the full $68 asking price, so I placed an online order today. In the past, I would have shied away from a set with so many non-traditional bullet lipsticks, but I am trying to broaden my horizons and try new things. At some point, I will write a comprehensive article on the liquid lipsticks I’ve tried and go over my results for which one is best for dry lips. Until then, I will keep exploring.
This 2018 Sephora Favorites Kit came back in stock temporarily (after I reviewed it), but it returned to its original $80 price tag. I went over the reasons I would not purchase the 2018 Sephora Favorites Superstars Kit at full-price in a grab or pass article. The main reason was the original price of $80 was too high for mostly samples that Sephora has given out many times. Of the $85.50 in full-size products, none of the items really grabbed my attention. I already owned two of them and the other two were things I would not usually purchase, especially at full-price. All of the samples already existed in my collection, and I did not need duplicates of any of them. My decision in that article was I would purchase the kit if it dipped to $40. At that price, I could justify grabbing the two items I did not already own and keeping some duplicates of the products I really love and would actually need. Days after posting that article, Sephora discounted the set to $40 in its Labor Day Sale. To make sure I could not pass this deal up, Sephora allowed me to use my Rouge discount code from the Beauty Insider Appreciation Event for an extra 20% off bringing the final sales price to $32.
It’s been a long time since I’ve shared completely free samples I’ve received. These are not items I got for free as a GWP, although you may know how much I love those. They are free products I received without any purchase or (in many cases) no promise to review the item. Most freebies in this type of article have nothing to do with my blog either. Since my last volume, I’ve received a lot more than I am about to share, but I did not put any other items aside for the article. Now that I have returned to actively blogging, I will put all freebies aside and post the next volume when I have at least a few items to share. When a free sampling site that requires a review or someone sends me something for consideration, I usually dedicate an article to it. Part of the reason I decided to write this now instead of waiting for more products is I want to use them.
Give Me Some New Lip is a new Sephora Favorites Set. I love when Sephora puts out a new Favorites Set. These sets retail for a lot less than the value of the items inside. As long as the items you plan on keeping exceed the value of the price you pay for the set, it is a good deal. This is one of my favorite ways to sample new items, and I like the sets even more when they have some full-sized items inside. While paying for samples is something I do often in subscription boxes, I limit how often I pay for samples in sets. The mystery of subscription boxes and desire to get things I would never purchase prevails in that case. When a set only has samples and costs over $20, I am less likely to purchase it. Paying for samples is not always a bad thing, especially when sets have items you really want to try, and you have not been able to get them for free or as a GWP.
I love when Sephora puts out a new Favorites Set. These sets retail for a lot less than the value of the items inside. As long as the items you plan on keeping exceed the value of the price you pay for the set, it is a good deal. This is one of my favorite ways to sample new items, and I like the sets even more when they have some full-sized items inside. While paying for samples is something I do often in subscription boxes, I limit how often I pay for samples in sets. The mystery of subscription boxes and desire to get things I would never purchase prevails in that case. When a set only has samples and costs over $20, I am less likely to purchase it. Paying for samples is not always a bad thing, especially when sets have items you really want to try and have not been able to get them for free or as a GWP.
No one puts favorites sets together like Sephora. They are one of my favorite things to buy, because I love sampling a lot of items that I get an incredible deal on. This is the first year since I started shopping at Sephora that there is no Give Me More Lip Set. The large set lip lovers get this year is Give Me Some Lip & Liner. It has 14 lip products, so it is right on par with past sets (they usually have 15-16). There are four full-size products in the set and as usual the value of the full-size items exceeds the cost of the set. If you’re interested in the full-size items, this set is definitely a deal.
I have a really hard time passing on a Sephora favorites. When Give Me Some Nude Lip launched, I thought I would pass. Nudes are not really my thing. When I wear lip color, I generally want them bold. My bolder eye looks do pair better with nudes, so I keep some on hand. Lippies are a serious weakness. This is my third mini set. Although I missed the 2015 set, I did partake in 2013 and 2014. In 2014 and 2015, I also purchased the Give Me More Lip sets (which are a lot larger). You could quickly build your lip collection just by investing in these kits. This set has gone in and out of stock online. If it is out of stock again when you check, call your local stores to see if they have any. They can hold it for 24 hours if they do.
I tried not to re-qualify for Sephora VIB Rouge until the end of the year, but I got really close. After getting there on July 12th last year, I’d say November 26th is a huge improvement. Fingers crossed for December 31st next year. During the VIB Rouge sale, I purposely stopped short of qualifying thinking I would make one last purchase when we get our $25 off $50 gift cards. The Black Friday deals were a lot better to me this year than last, so I was not able to pass them up. There were two that instantly caught my eye, which I mentioned in my Black Friday Deals article.
Welcome to Black Friday, the biggest shopping Day of the Year. By now, I am sure you’ve probably already shopped a bit or are about to get started. My Black Friday Deals post went over some great offers. This article on Cyber Monday offers will have no repeat deals, so I hope you find something great inside.