The Long Overdue Benefit Advent Calendar Finale

Happy New Year lovely readers! I hope you are having a beautiful start to the new year. I woke up this morning feeling very optimistic about the year to come, pondering what my beauty resolution should be this year (more on that later) and realizing that my final Benefit Advent Calendar post is long overdue. As such, my first order of beauty blog business this year is to finally tell you all what treasures I received on the final three days before Christmas!
Benefit Bad Gal Lash, Cha Cha Tint and Fake Up
Day 22 held a tube of Bad Gal Lash mascara. I’ve mentioned this mascara before on the blog. I used it in college, and it was quite literally the prettiest my lashes ever looked. However, something about the formula stung and burned my sensitive eyes, so I had to give it up. I haven’t given this mini a try yet, but I’ve decided I am going to give Bad Gal another go, just in case the formula has changed. I’ll let you know how that goes in the near future.

Behind door 23 was a mini of Cha Cha Tint, which might be the only Benefit complexion enhancer that I didn’t already have! Like the others it gives a nice subtle wash of color. This one is a soft peachy shade that I think would be great for spring.

Christmas Eve revealed a mini of Fake Up, a moisturizing under eye concealer that I recently wrote about here. Since my tube is almost gone, I was delighted to add this one to my stash!

So, 2014 is officially behind us, which means the shopping ban is officially over! I’ll be posting this month about my experience with the ban and what I learned from it. In the mean time, I want to know what your beauty resolutions are! I still haven’t decided what to do this year, and I might just steal your idea. Please feel free to leave suggestions in the comments!

Thanks for a great year, readers!

Benefit Advent Calendar Days 15 – 21

I can hardly believe that there are only three days left in the calendar, but I can’t lie – I’m beyond excited! I’m enjoying the holiday season more this year than I have in recent memory, and I have a feeling this festive little calendar may have had something to do with it. It could also be that I have a wonderful husband and fabulous friends and family to help me celebrate. Perhaps a little of both!
Benefit Ooh-la-lift and That Gal
This week was filled with a good variety of treasures, some better than others. Day 15 held a little vial of Ooh-La-Lift, an under eye brightener that I’ve always wanted to try. Unfortunately, after several uses, I have to say that it didn’t do much of anything for me. I didn’t see a change in my under eye appearance at all, and it’s milky texture made it feel too slippery for my face.

Day 16 revealed a mini bottle of High Beam, which is pretty much my favorite Benefit product and the secret to looking well-rested when you just aren’t. Swipe and blend over cheek and brow bones and BAM! You’re glowing. Not surprisingly, I have a bottle of it already, so this one went to my lovely sister!

The notepad behind door 17 is cute but probably too small to be useful – a little disappointing. Day 18 held a little bottle of “That Gal” brightening face primer. Now, if you’ll remember, I was burned by the last primer I tried from this calendar (dry patches! chalky skin!), but I gathered my courage and gave this one a try. Here’s what I found: even though I didn’t notice any brightening effects, my makeup stayed pretty much flawless all day! Again, I’m not a huge fan of primers, but if you’re looking for one, this one goes on very smoothly and really did make my makeup last.
Benefit Ultra Plush Lip Gloss in Fauxmance and Watt's Up
Door 19 was hiding another hair tie, and this one is by far my favorite – a lovely light blush-pink sort of color with tiny white polka dots. I could not love the color more, and the tie is working very well – it’s in my hair as I type this!

Day 20’s gift was another Ultra Plush Lip Gloss, this one in the shade Fauxmance. It’s kind of a berry purple-pink shade in the tube but is sort of reddish on the lips. I haven’t decided if I like the color yet or not, but to be honest, I’m still so in love with the Dandelion gloss I received earlier in the month that I’m not really looking for a replacement just yet!

Today’s treat was a tube of Watt’s Up, a golden champagne shimmery highlighter. Another favorite of mine, and lately it’s been my go-to – I swipe it beneath my brows, blend and go. I still have a little left in my current tube, but this one will go into my beauty stash to replace it when it’s gone. I’m thrilled to have another one!

Be sure to check back on Christmas Eve to find out what’s behind the final three doors!

Benefit Advent Calendar Days 10 – 14

Hello my pretties! With Christmas fast approaching I’ve been a holiday-partying fool this past week! Add in some present-wrapping and Christmas shopping and I’ve barely had a second to rest, let alone update all of you on what’s been inside my advent calendar! We’ve got five days to cover, so let’s jump right in.

Days 11 and 13 both featured items that I already have and adore: Benetint and Posietint. If you’re not familiar with these lip and cheek stains I suggest you check them out, because they are the ultimate I-just-happen-to-naturally-have-this-gorgeous-flush products. Posietint is my favorite summertime tint, while Benetint is a classic red that’s great for parties. Since I already have bottles of both, I gifted them to my sister!
Benefit Total Moisture Facial Cream and Stay Flawless Primer
Unfortunately, day 10 gave me the first dud of the calendar – Stay Flawless 15-Hour Primer. This little primer stick comes in adorable polka dot packaging, but my love for it ends there. It did nothing to extend the life of my makeup, and made me look far less flawless than I normally do – it made my dry spots even flakier and gave me a somewhat chalky appearance. Not cute.

The advent calendar gods must have known that my skin was in need of some TLC, because behind door number 12 was a nice little jar of Total Moisture Facial Cream. It has more of a perfumey smell than I’m used to in a moisturizer, and that made me a little nervous, but so far it hasn’t bothered my skin at all and after one use I woke up with much softer, less itchy and non-flaky skin – hooray!

Today’s gift was an elastic hair band with a bow charm on it. Cute, but a little too youthful for my style – I’ll be gifting it to one of the littler beauties in my life!

What Benefit product is on your wish list this year?

Benefit Advent Calendar Days 7 – 9

This sparkly silver hair tie adds a touch of glamour to workouts and face-washing sessions.

This sparkly silver hair tie adds a touch of glamour to workouts and face-washing sessions.

I’m super excited about the last three days of advent calendar goodies, even though only one of them was a traditional beauty product. I’m having so much fun opening up my little gifts each day, and since I’m committed to trying each item so that I can tell all of you about them, I’m able to really appreciate how nice each one is! For example, my day 7 present was a sparkly silver hair tie. Now, in everyday life I only ever use black hair ties, but I’ve been using the silver one at home to give it a proper chance. It’s a nice quality tie that holds hair well and has a nice elastic. It creates and adorable ponytail, actually, and has turned workouts and face-washing sessions into purely glamorous events!
I can't stop using these Benefit sticky notes!

I can’t stop using these Benefit sticky notes!

I know some other bloggers are upset about what was behind door number 8, but I, for one, really loved it: girly Benefit sticky notes! Not only are they a great half-size sticky note with a pretty pink-and-white design, they also stick really well to things, without curling up into a little tube like cheapo sticky notes tend to do. These are on my desk at work and I’ve been using them left and right. Love them!
This is the smoothest and most flattering lip gloss I've ever used - instant favorite!

This is the smoothest and most flattering lip gloss I’ve ever used – instant favorite!

Today’s beauty score was the best one yet: a tube of Dandelion Ultra Plush Lip Gloss. The Dandelion shade is the most flattering peachy-pink, and the gloss itself is silky smooth – no waxy or sticky texture here. I took it to work with me today and kept reapplying throughout the day – it just made me so happy I couldn’t stop smiling when I had it on! I felt like a million bucks all day, and apparently looked it as well – I was told by three different people that I looked cute/pretty/beautiful today! I really can’t say enough good things about this gloss. Quick, go buy one for yourself!

Benefit Advent Calendar Days 4 – 6

The holiday joy continued this week as the past three days each revealed a new Benefit beauty treat. Day 4 held a tube of Stay Don’t Stray in Light/Medium. I’ve heard nothing but great things about this concealer and eye shadow primer, but since I’m not much of a primer girl, and since my pasty white skin tone doesn’t do very well with anything in the “Medium” family, I decided to share the advent calendar love by passing it along to one of my coworkers! She swears by eye shadow primer and was instantly impressed with how well this one neutralized the redness in her skin.

More great beauty treasures from the Benefit Advent Calendar

More great beauty treasures from the Benefit Advent Calendar

Two nights ago before bed I was bemoaning the fact that my eyes have been looking extra crinkly these days and that none of my eye creams seem to be doing a thing to improve the situation. Imagine how ecstatic I was, then, to wake up the next day and find a mini jar of It’s Potent! Eye Cream behind door number five! A couple of years ago I did a massive eye cream test and It’s Potent! was one of my top two picks. I am happy to report that I still love it – it felt so good going on and within 24 hours the lines around my eyes looked softer. Thanks Benefit!

Today’s gift was a tube of The POREfessional, a balm that is said to reduce the appearance of pores alone, under or over makeup. I didn’t test it over makeup, but I did try it by itself and under my usual BB cream. Here’s what I found: it works wonderfully under makeup, but by itself I saw very little difference in the appearance of my pores. Now, I don’t have very large pores to begin with, and the effect might change with pore size, but after I smoothed on my BB cream my pores absolutely vanished. Also, though the balm has sort of a tan hue coming out of the tube, it blended flawlessly with my complexion. This product probably won’t make it into my regular rotation, but I’m glad I have a tube in case of large pore emergencies.

Stay tuned for more advent calendar fun!