Tag Archive | Online shopping

The #MorpheMe brush subscription

I recall many moons ago when I started reading beauty blogs, I could not fathom why beauty bloggers needed so many brushes. Is it greed? Indulgence? Were they just too rich? Then I bought my first makeup brush. I’m sure it was a CALA eyeshadow blending brush. That snowballed and I started trying and buying more brushes. I realised all brushes are not created equally, hence the quest for the best makeup brushes actually never ends…..AND the dirty brush problem…the struggle is real…so just buy more apparently. lol

I’d hear a lot of beauty personalities go on and on about Morphe brushes. Every fabulous YouTuber has a Morphe discount code for you to use and I hoped one day, when the rand was super strong, I’d be able to place an order and the hard part would just be deciding if I was using Jaclyn or Kathleen’s code. I was due to be waiting a long time….until I stumbled upon a post by Nisa from Belle Blushh where she mentioned she was trying out this new brush subscription after cancelling a lipstick box subscription. I immediately clicked on the link and signed up. Yes….it’s that easy when you’re in the throws of a makeup/beauty buying addiction.

Okay, so LiveGlam currently has 3 different subscription options:

– The brush club

– The lipstick club

– The polish club

I signed up for the #MorhpeMe brush club. It’s a monthly subscription that costs you $19,99 per month and you will get brushes worth at least $30 delivered to you. I pay an additional $7 to get them shipped to South Africa. In total this came to roughly R360.

On 31 January I placed my order and through a very trying and patience testing snail mail delivery system, my brushes eventually arrived at my local post office on the 11th March. I had a customs bill of R24….SERIOUSLY???? Urgh….

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The February brushes were from the gun metal range and I received:

G36 – Round Powder (RSP $13.99)

Use this Round Powder brush to apply powder foundation flawlessly or to blend out a contour. This synthetic brush is ultra-soft and gets powder exactly where it needs to be.

G33 – Angled Buffer (RSP $8.99)

Our new Angled buffer is perfect for under eye makeup. Buff concealer under your eye, exactly where you need it. The shape of this brush targets all the areas that can crease easily.

G34 – Mini Round Buffer (RSP $8.99)

This small synthetic brush is perfectly dense for buffing in concealer to flawless coverage.

Then, because I clicked on a sign up link, I also qualified for a free brush and received:

E22 – Pointed Blender ( RSP $6.99)

A small, tapered blender with just a bit more density than your average crease brush. Perfect for buffing out over applications of eye shadow or blending away harsh lines.

The brushes excluding my freebie, were valued at $32/R420 vs the R384 I spent (incl. customs). That’s R96 per brush. I doubt you’d be able to buy these for less than R100 – R200 per brush in SA. Maybe even more.

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The March brushes arrived on 3 April, after having been shipped on 1 March. The brushes I received were:

M401 Large Pointed Powder (RSP $13.99)

Use this large, natural hair, powder brush to define your cheekbones, set your under-eye, or add a light dust of powder!

M412 Deluxe Pointed Blender (RSP $5.99)

This fluffy, pointed eyeshadow brush will help you achieve a blended crease or add a pop of accent color. – I can already tell that I am going to LOVE this brush!

M521 Chisel Oval Shadow (RSP $5.99)

This natural hair eyeshadow brush will help you pack on color and carve out a perfect crease!

M436 Mini Duo Blender (RSP $6.99)

Try this duo-fiber synthetic and natural bristle brush to apply a flawlessly airbrushed foundation, concealer, or powder!

The retail value of the March brushes are also $32/R420.

So besides the fact that this is cheaper than ordering locally, there are a few other benefits to subscribing with LiveGlam.

  • You can pause your subscription anytime.
  • After the brushes are revealed for the month, you can opt to exchange/trade these brushes for some other brushes on offer, before they are shipped to you.
  • You accumulate rewards points by subscribing and referring friends, that you can use towards makeup items or free brushes. (i.e. I get 100 points a month for being subscribed. For 225 points I can get a LA Girl concealer. 850 points gets you a Tarte mascara. 200 points gets you a Morphe brush.)
  • You also get a free brush if you get a friend to sign up through your own referral link. The (obviously very good) friend also gets a free brush when using the link.

Feel free to use my  referral link if you want to sign up 🙂 We both score, so why not? he he

So that’s the rundown of the #MorpheMe brush subscription. I think it’s a fabulous way to try out new brushes and to get your hands on the cult favourite Morphe brushes ❤

Let me know what you think of the subscription and if it’s something you’d consider signing up for? Also do you know of any other cool makeup or beauty related subscriptions that are accessible internationally?

Shopping with Pink Cosmetics {International brands}

I first came across Pink Cosmetics after I joined a beauty page on Facebook. I was intrigued, because I LOVE the colour pink! So already I knew this was a website after my own pink heart ❤ Pink Cosmetics is owned by Janet, who is a qualified beautician. She makes the most GORGEOUS bath bombs, soaps and hair products, amongst other things. PINK stands for: Perfectly Inspired by Nature’s Knowledge, so with this knowledge, she ensures that her products are paraben, sulphate and petro chemical free!

All this is obviously great right? But it gets even better….Janet is an importer of international makeup brands as well! Most brand you can think of, she stocks. Needless to say she’s a very popular lady on the group. She’s also known to go the extra mile with speedy deliveries and sometimes a little extra goodie in the package which is appreciated. A LOT.

In December last year Janet was advertising the Tartelette In Bloom palette on the group and I was smitten. I went and researched it, stalked it online, looked at swatches….I was in love. I fell hook, line and sinker. The only problem is I had treated myself to way more birthday presents than I told my husband about….lol…so I could not justify the purchase. Every once in a while I went to peep at the link, and that darn palette was still there.

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I was watching the Kathleen Lights ‘Best of beauty 2016’ upload and this palette made the cut. I was even more smitten….if that’s possible. If Kathleen loved it, I HAD to have it! Sometime at the beginning of January I think, I must have been drunk and went and drunk dialled the palette on the link….declaring my undying love and telling it how I just could not forget about what we never had. Janet messaged me and said she had the palette in stock and and and…… it didn’t take much convincing, throw in free shipping and a deal I could not refuse, I told her to invoice me.

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It arrived shortly after she opened for business in January and I was so surprised to see an extra little goodie for me on top of the excellent service! The SLMissglam beauty sponge ❤

The palette….the packaging feels luxurious and sturdy and it looks very high end with the gold and shades of pinks and purples on the outside. When you open the palette it has the faint smell of chocolate, very much reminiscent of the Too Faced chocolate bar palette that I chatted about here. It has a large mirror which I quite like. There are 12 shades, 3 shimmers and 9 matte shades. These matte shades are so smooth and soft…almost satiny. Definitely not dry and chalky like some mattes can be. The shades are also nicely pigmented. This palette was definitely money well spent ❤

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Image taken off the Tarte website.

I’ll give you a quick rundown of the shades row by row, left to right:

Charmer – a matte vanilla shade

Jetsetter – a matte milk chocolate brown

Rocker – A taupey shimmer? This may be my favourite colour in the palette

Smokeshow – A cool toned matte dark chocolate brown colour

Flower child – A cream matte shade

Smarty pants – Shoot how do I describe this one? A matte caramel shade?

Firecracker – I’m a shimmer ho…I won’t lie. This gorgeous bronzey copper shade is so divine!

Activist – Also a dark chocolate brown matte shade, but slightly warmer toned than Smokeshow

Funny girl – A shimmery champagne shade

Sweetheart- Gorgeous matte pinky peach shade

Rebel – A matte terracotta shade?

Leader – This is also a brown matte shade when swatched, but it has brick red kind of undertones.

This is such a versatile palette and you literally don’t need anything else. You can do day time looks, natural neutral looks, more glammed night time looks with a smokey eye. Literally anything. I really love this palette and I have a feeling it’s going to be my favourite for a while ❤

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I’ve had a chance to try the sponge out and I really like it as well. It’s very soft and swells a lot when wet. It blends my foundation nicely. You’ll notice it also has the smaller flat part at the tip which is great for your under-eye concealer and powder.

So gals, that was my experience with Pink Cosmetics (I believe a name change may be on the cards). If you’re looking to shop for international brands, and you’re scared because so many people are selling FAKE MAKEUP, rest assured, you can shop with confidence on Janet’s website ❤

Do you own the In Bloom palette? I’m dying to try the shape tape concealer next! I believe it’s the holy grail of concealers. Have you tried any Tarte products?

 

 

 

Online shopping tips

haute-chocolate-styled-stock-photography-august-free-images-1 (1)-01A few years ago, I went a bit crazy with overseas shopping for my daughter’s 4th birthday party. I had a computer and my poor husband’s credit card, I thought it was easy peasy…. buy and pay. Little did I know the dangers of online shopping at the time, and a few months later we received insane credit card statements for thousands of rands purchased at unknown overseas companies. Thankfully the bank reversed it, as it was fraud obviously, but I’m sure it could have been much worse. I get a few messages asking how I purchase items internationally, so I thought I’d do a blog post on it.

A few months ago I discovered Aramex Global Shopper and after reading some good reviews, I signed up. I think I paid around R170 (with a discount code) for the actual account, which is for a lifetime membership. What you get is:

  • Affordable shipping fees – R175 for the first 0.5kgs and then R99 per 0.5kgs after that
  • Currently, about 18 ‘addresses’ around the world that you can ship to, when the seller perhaps does not ship to South Africa (and Kenya or Botswana). From that ‘address’, they ship to your physical address in South Africa. Addresses include Hong Kong, Dubai, London, Milan, New York, Thailand and Tokyo. (Remember you may still have shipping from the retailer to the Aramex address, so look out for free shipping offers within the country you are purchasing from, or if there’s a ‘free shipping above $30 purchases’ offer. )
  • Aramex deals with customs and fees on your behalf, and you settle with them directly, instead of dealing with customs.
  • They insure your parcel for up to $50 (I think that’s the amount).
  • They offer a money back guarantee within the 1st year if you’re not happy with their service. No questions asked.

Cons

  • If you go 100gms over 0.5kgs, you get charged the additional R99, which is a bit painful for me personally. Unfortunately the sellers do not give you an estimate of parcel weight.
  • You cannot combine packages to save on shipping fees. You pay per parcel.

I’ve used Aramex a few times now and have been very happy with their service, except my very last order, but they have now contacted me and are keeping me up to date. They are a very good option for shipping international packages. The speedy deliveries have seriously impressed me, sometimes being shorter than some local deliveries I’ve waited for.  So that’s Aramex in a nutshell.

Then to pay for my actual purchases I recommend setting up a PayPal account. You can use PayPal to pay for your purchases and not have to provide any actual card/account information online to the seller. I really like that. Also you can activate/link a few cards or deactivate a card at any time. Also what I really love about PayPal is that they offer you Buyer Protection.

Buyer Protection – If an eligible item that you’ve bought online doesn’t arrive, or doesn’t match the seller’s description, PayPal’s Buyer Protection may reimburse you for the full amount of the item plus postage. Buyer Protection can cover your eligible online purchases, on eBay or on any other website, when you use PayPal.

Once you start purchasing makeup (or anything really) overseas, you want to have the freedom and peace of mind to purchase any sought after brand not available locally and to know you’ll be protected in the event of damages, incorrect goods, etc. If you’re careful and do your homework, you should not be shedding any tears over purchases gone wrong 🙂

Always research before purchasing from an International retailer. Check their Facebook page, Google, etc. for feedback on purchases. I had a friend message me recently about a dress she wanted to purchase. It took me 5 seconds to Google that the dresses were bad quality and also the retailer was a bit dodgy. So please ladies, do your homework.

I’ve used the Aramex and Paypal to purchase from Colourpop, Superdrug and Wet n Wild. Colourpop does ship internationally now, but I find that their flat $25 is a bit much compared to the $13-$15 fee I pay to Aramex. So many International brands are making it easier to purchase their goodies, but compare shipping rates to save a few bucks. I want to place a Makeup Revolution order soon and their shipping fee is lower than the Aramex fee, so I’ll be using their shipping in that case.

Happy shopping ladies and stay safe.

PS If you want to sign up with Aramex, Google for a discount code and I’m sure one should come up. If you are interested, I can also check for you, so just leave a comment below.

PSS Stock photo credit to Haute Chocolate