Benefit Advent Calendar Days 1 – 3

As I mentioned in my last post, my wonderful family surprised me with the Benefit Cosmetics advent calendar after Thanksgiving dinner last week. I always imagined that an advent calendar filled with miniature beauty products and pretty little trinkets would be amazing. Turns out, I was right. Each morning when I open a door on the calendar I feel a bit more like a princess. And so far, each day has revealed a better little gift! I can’t wait to see what the rest of the month holds.

These adorable little paperclips brightened my office - and my day!

These adorable little paperclips brightened my office – and my day!

So, without further ado, let’s get into the good stuff – what I got! The advent calendar goodies started off on a somewhat underwhelming note when I opened the first door and found a set of four pink heart-shaped paperclips. Now don’t get me wrong, I love office supplies and under normal circumstances would be delighted by such a thing. But, having spent the last 11 months not shopping for makeup, I was more than a little excited by the prospect of getting a new product to try. So the sight of those adorable little paperclips on day one took a bit of wind out of my sails. However, I took them to work with me, where they brightened my office and totally made my day.

Starting on that less-than-thrilling note day one turned out to be brilliant, because when I opened the door on day two and found a mini tube of Benefit Ultra Plush Lip Gloss in A-Lister I actually squealed with glee. A-Lister is a light bubble-gum pink colored gloss, and is a lighter shade than I would typically pick out for myself, but I have to say that I’m quickly becoming obsessed with it! It’s super smooth and moisturizing, and gives lips a nice full appearance.

Pretty pink gloss and loads of mascara are the secret to winter pretty.

Pretty pink gloss and loads of mascara are the secret to winter pretty.

The magic continued this morning when the third door revealed a tube of They’re Real! mascara. As regular readers will know, this is one of my all-time favorite mascaras, and I used mine up earlier this year. Also, I’ve determined that gobs of mascara and pretty pink lip gloss is the secret to looking (and feeling) pretty on a cold and stormy December morning. Well played, advent calendar!

November 2014 Empties

Happy December my friends! November is now behind us and you know what that means, don’t you? I’m officially in the final month of my beauty shopping ban. Hooray! Making the countdown to the end even more exciting is the surprise early Christmas gift that my family presented after our Thanksgiving feast: the Benefit Cosmetics Advent Calendar! Stay tuned for extra special posts about the goodies inside over the next few weeks. Merry Christmas to me!

November was a fairly uneventful month in terms of empties, with several old favorites in the mix. Let’s take a look:
November 2014 Empties
Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleansing Cloths: Okay, I know I’ve written about these several times, but I have to praise them again. As the weather turned wintery here over the past few weeks, my skin has gone a little crazy. That is, until I started using these wipes as my nightly cleanser, followed by my favorite winter moisturizer (Philosophy Miracle Worker). My skin is looking great these days!

Simple Cleansing Facial Wipes: Back in the day these were a favorite face wipe of mine. Now, not so much. I don’t know if it has to do with my age or the season or what, but these made me break out horribly this time around. They didn’t do my husband’s skin any favors, either. Sadly, I will not be purchasing these again.

Melaleuca Sun Valley White Amber Jasmine Body Crème: I found this cream a bit too heavy for all-over use – it clogged the pores on my arms – but it’s a great hand cream and it smells amazing. It reminds me of a slightly more mysterious version of Victoria’s Secret’s Strawberries & Champagne scent.

Korres Guava Body Butter: This body butter can be a little bit oily, but in the super dry winter months it can’t be beat in terms of deeply moisturizing skin, especially hands and elbows.

Osmia Organics Best Lip Balm: My new favorite lip balm. You can read more about it here.

Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Peel Original Formula: A longtime skincare favorite, and one of my top picks for #skincaresunday. You can read more here.