Yes: I’m just back from America and the first thing I am going to tell you about is my trip to the mall. In my defence, allow me to raise two points:
– Shopping is not “basic”. Realising you are walking up Columbus Avenue holding a Starbucks coffee and Taylor Swift’s “Welcome to New York” has started playing in your headphones is basic;
– I’m far more disappointed that I passed up a gig to stay in with Aggie and order Chinese food than in the amount of money I spent shopping. Actually, no I’m not, that was awesome.
Crabtree Valley Mall is your typical American indoor shopping mall – by which I mean it’s like a shopping centre over here, but bigger. Think 200 shops and restaurants, anchored by a Macy’s and North Carolina’s home-grown department store, Belk. It’s tough to get to because the default position in NC is that everybody has a car – which means one bus an hour – but hey, it has a Sephora.
Obviously, no US shopping trip is complete without a visit to Sephora. The Crabtree Valley store wasn’t the largest I had ever been in, which might have been why I managed to escape relatively unscathed. There were a few things I had planned to stock up on while I could take advantage of the exchange rate, but I didn’t manage to find a holiday purchase with which to treat myself. There was an exciting-looking Smashbox eyeshadow palette I was tempted by, but I’m saving myself for Urban Decay’s Spectrum.
The Dr Brant Pores No More primer has been one of my “hero” products since I discovered it in a Birchbox a year or so ago: it’s velvety to the touch and mattifies all my shiny bits. Sure, it’s not the cheapest primer on the market, but I have 30+ skin and I do what I want. Benefit’s Hervana is my favourite everyday blush, and I’d been meaning to buy a full-size Urban Decay All-Nighter makeup setting spray since I used up the sample I got in my goody bag from the House of Fraser press event.
I’ve been reading a lot of love for Urban Decay’s creamy, well-pigmented Revolution lipsticks, but I doubt I would have purchased the gloriously rich magenta “Jilted” if I hadn’t tried a sample size first. Turns out it is my colour. The sparkly eyeshadows were my
one two concessions to the unnecessary: they’re Sephora’s own brand and they’re called Fairy Princess (mauve) and Break the Bank (green).
There were also a couple of freebies, courtesy of my Beauty Insider points card. I signed up for one of these back in 2009 (Sephora Chestnut Street, Philadelphia) and it turned out I was still registered under my old email address. I picked a lovely Too Faced Chocolate Soleil bronzer as a deluxe sample with my points (it’s make with cocoa powder, and smells like it too!) and got given a couple of NARS lip pencils as my (four months late) “birthday gift”.
My “best” purchase was the new trainers I got for $40, reduced from $140, but I’ve already tramped them all over New York so you’ll just have to take my word for it. Far more exciting: hand sanitisers and Yankee Candles.
Lynsay, the Great Encourager, first introduced me Bath and Body Works’ probably iconic Pocketbac hand sanitisers, and my Rachelle Renée, the Great Enabler, then sent me a bunch of them last year. They’ve changed the design of the packaging, which it turns out makes them even more pocketable. At five four $6 plus sales tax, I picked up some seasonal scents including Sunlight & Apple Trees, Marshmallow Pumpkin Latte and Sweet Tangerine.
Yankee Candles are, of course, proper basic, but I’m a sucker for the votive size – so cheap, and fit perfectly into the candle holder my sister-in-law gave me as a souvenir of her wedding – plus, the scents you get in the US are so much more interesting. Somehow I managed to resist the Turkey & Stuffing scent, though. No, I’m not kidding. Instead I picked up mini Gingerbread Maple, Vanilla Bourbon, Apple Pumpkin and Salted Caramel (another one Rachelle Renée got me hooked on) scents. If you’re wondering whether I love apple scented and apple flavoured things way more than I love actual apples then yes, you are correct.
What do you think of my purchases? And what’s on your US beauty wishlist?