SEPHORA SALE Shopping Guide - With Fragrance free highlights
Updated: Oct 29, 2020
It is still a weird time to be talking about shopping and spending money, so let's start this by saying if you do not want nor have the means to shop the annual pre-holiday Sephora sale - skip it. This sale is really only a good deal for people who have a Rouge status and get 20% off - if you do not, this could be another reason to skip because most brands offer deeper discounts themselves than Sephora is offering. However, it there are multiple items you are shopping for, it's easier and cheaper to shop them at once from one store. Enough people messaged me asking what I was buying to warrant a round up of my favorite Sephora picks that warranted me updating my list.
**Important Note: I update this running list every time there is a Sephora Sale. Since the BLM protests this summer, and the #PullUporShutUp movement, I have decided to no longer support many of the below brands due to their responses (or lack thereof). This is a personal decision and I do not judge anyone who still supports them - we are all grown adults who can make their own decisions. I plan to finish the products I own so as to not be wasteful, but will not buy them again. I will mark these items with "⊘" to denote I am no longer supporting the brand for reasons relating to their handling of the above (or other reasons of a similar nature), but my opinion of the quality of the product has not changed. There is plenty information available online to explain and showcase the brands' questionable behavior, so if you are curious please feel free to look into it in your own time.
The Sephora Sale dates & discounts are as follows:
Rouge 20% off - 10/30-11/9
VIB 15% off - 11/3-11/9
Insider 10% off - 11/5-11/9
• Bobbi Brown Crush Oil-Infused Gloss - The perfect lip gloss does not exist? Bullshit. It does, and this is it. New Romantic is the nude pink gloss of my goddamn dreams. Free Spirit is a nude beige color so luscious it will make you cry. The formula, is, and I cannot stress this enough, NOT STICKY. It's sumptuous and lush and hydrating. Just buy it already and thank me later.
• Pat McGrath Labs Lust Lip Gloss - A close contender for best lipgloss, this generous tube of shiny sin is divine. The shade "Flesh Fantasy" is a beautiful my lips but better shade that will make any pout instantly irresistible.
• Charlotte Tilbury Dancefloor Princess Lipstick - ⊘ - Here's the thing about CT lipsticks - they're all orange. Seriously, they all lean orange. Luckily, orange suits me so I'm golden in that front but it's frustrating. I swear the perfect medium pink of "pillow talk" you see in all the swatch photos never actually looks pink on anyone I know. It's still beautiful, but it's a muddy brown orange-pink in real life. Anyway, that aside, I do genuinely adore Dancefloor Princess. One of Charlotte's newer Hotlips 2 launch, this pinky nude does lean a bit coral (surprise surprise) but it works really well on me. It's a soft satin formula with classic wear time that is also very comfortable. The packaging is cute but I know a lot of others have complained the design wears off easily but this has not happened to mine. I have not tried it myself but apparently the clear balm from this line is also amazing.
• Gucci Rouge à Lèvres Voile Sheer Lipstick - The packaging alone is worth the price tag for this stunning lipstick. It instantly transports you to Old Hollywood. I love the sheer formula, and shades 205 Hold Your Man, 110 Marguerite Jade, 603 Marina Violet, and 25* Goldie Red are my favorites.
• Dior Addict Stellar Shine Lipstick - A newer favorite, this super shiny, thin, tinted-balm, gloss-like lipstick is so lovely to wear, especially during WFH. It's the perfect kind of no-lipstick lipstick as it give you a pop of color without feeling like you're wearing anything heavier than a lip balm. Shade 623 Hypnotique is a beautiful Cinnamon shade perfect for fall and winter.
• Marc Jacobs Poutliner Longwear Lip Liner in Nude(ist) - After hearing countless people on Instagram rave about how this is the absolute perfect nude lip liner, I gave in and ordered it to see for myself. It is a beautiful nude liner that makes my lips look naturally fuller.
• Hourglass Ambient Lighting Blush in Brilliant Nude* - We all know I am a cream blush girl, but this radiant formula has my heart. This finely milled dream of a blush is a deep nude color with a subtle sheen. When I use it I apply an even, light dusting across my cheeks and it somehow gives the effect of blush, bronzer, and highlight. It is my go-to when I want to look effortlessly radiant. Brilliant Nude is my favorite shade of this formula, but they're all stunning.I recently purchased the shade "At Night" - a stunning brick red, and holy heck is it an ideal winter shade. It is also fragrance free.
• Hourglass Ambient Bronzer - Most of the time I prefer a matte bronzer (mostly because the majority of bronzers on the market that have shimmer look ridiculous) but this radiant, luminous version changed my mind. It has a stunning soft glow, and it is easy to build. I wear shade Nude Bronze Light but after seeing and swatching these in person, I think I could get away with the two darker shades as well. It is also fragrance free, which is hard to find in bronzes but a must for me.
• Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Matte Bronzer - ⊘ - This massive matte bronzer might be the best bronzer I have ever used. The silicone formula glides on skin and gives you that signature "airbrushed" look. Blending is a dream with this beauty. I wear shade 2. It is fragrance free.
• Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Finish Setting Power - ⊘ - With a cult-like following, this setting powder may be the most purchased item from all of Charlotte Tilbury's line. The signature silicone formula delivers flawless looking skin, incredible staying power, and an easily blended formula. It is fragrance free.
• Fenty Beauty Cream Blush - I love the shade range here. The shades are fun and unlike others I have in my collection. They are sheer but buildable. They remind me if popsicles! My favorite shades are Drama Class (just trust me - it's very wearable) and Rose Latte. Unlike many of her products, this is fragrance free.
• Melt Cosmetics Blush - A more traditional powder blush (lots of fall-out), this super pigmented pan took me by surprise. I purchased the shade Bawdy during the last Sephora sale and instantly fell in love. Be careful with this aggressive fucker - she packs a punch. It takes a very light hand and a fluffy brush, but the vibrant pink gives me an enviable flush of color. I immediately went back for the peach color, Honey Thief, and both have been in high rotation. Another fragrance free option.
• Tower 28 Beach Please Cream Blush in Magic Hour - ⊘ - This is the closest formula dupe I have found for my HG Kjaer Weiss blush (not sold at Sephora). It is creamy and highly pigmented and has serious staying power. I really hope they release more shades soon. While this is fragrance free, it does have some fragrant oils like Rosemary Leaf Extract.
• Tom Ford Shade & Illuminate Shade - I always use the Sephora 20% off to splurge on things I'd never pay full price for but lust after. I have wanted this palette for AGES and finally picked it up when I had a gift card. I purchased shade 0.5 and it's the perfect tan shade for fair bbs like me. It's more bronzer than contour but it can work both ways. The highlight is a silky, wet looking dew with a touch of shimmer but on the skin it mostly just reads as wet. There are a handful of shades for other skin tones, and I think some of the darker shades could work well as contour colors. The ingredients aren't listed online and I am unsure if this is fragranced or not. It does have a scent but its nothing noteworthy or strong, and I am unsure if it is added or just from the ingredients.
• Surratt Auto-Graphique Liquid Eyeliner - This is, hands down, the best liquid eyeliner I have ever used. Yes, pricey, but - refillable! The ultra-precise tip glides the color on easily, and it dries down quickly. Then it doesn't budge all day. I purchased the brown and the black and I have fallen back in love with the cat eye because of this product. Of the two shades I own I actually prefer the brown with my hazel eyes.
• Marc Jacobs Highliner Gel Eye Crayon Eyeliner - Probably my most reached for color liner - when I have no idea what I want to do with my makeup I use this and do a simple liner. My top two are Mist Me, a matte lavender, and N(Ice) a metallic silver. They dry down and stay put but and have excellent color payoff.
• Charlotte Tilbury Pillow Talk Eye Quad - ⊘ - Originally released as a limited edition product, I missed it the first time around and watched with aggressive jealousy as others got it and adored it. Everyone raved about it. The makeup artist who did my makeup for my elopement and wedding reception even did a whole IG story series on all the looks she created with it. So when it was finally brought back I pounced on it. It is as a good and as versatile as everyone says. The pink hues suit my features, and the formulas are so creamy and blendable. I'm currently head over heels for this quad and plan to pick up more quads from the brand. I have greenish hazel eyes and think this looks lovely with them, but I bet it would kill on blue or brown eyes.
• Tom Ford Eye Quad - The quad I own, Nude Dip, is just stunning. The versatility of this quad is next level. It is so easy to create day and night looks. Another splurge, but this palette has been one of my most used since I bought it years ago.
• Dior Backstage Eyeshadow Palette in Warm Neutrals - Easily my most reached for palette to date, this is exactly what it says it is - a bunch of warm neutral shades. Containing both mattes and shimmers (as well as a primer base), this palette is so damn versatile it is shocking. The shadows are silky and blendable, with minimal fallout. If left to only have one eye palette for ever I would be surprised if I didn't pick this one.
• Pat McGrath Labs Mothership Eye Palette in Divine Rose - Pat's palettes are exceedingly pricey but they're on a different level than anything I've tried before. Her Divine Rose palettes in particular have the most beautiful shades, including some duochome ones I reach for the most. The sister palette, Divine Rose II, is calling my name.
• Huda Beauty Neon Obsessions Palette in Neon Pink - ⊘ - The glitters in the Neon palettes are next level - sheer, buildable, opalescent, usually with a color flip. My go-to look is a nude beige shadow all over with a pop of one of the glitters from this palette in the corner and I will, without fail, be asked by at least three people what I am wearing on my eyes.
• M.U.F.E. Artist Color Pencils - Designed for eyes, lips, and brows, these creamy but long-lasting pencils come in a variety of colors. I have a handful of the browns and use them primarily as eyeliner but they really are the type of formula that can be used just about anywhere. The shade range is so vast you could easily find a color for every need you have without having to venture to a different brand. A few favorites are Anywhere Caffeine, Limitless Brown, and Completely Sepia.
• Ilia Limitless Lash Lengthening Mascara - ⊘ - This is likely my favorite mascara, ever. It is the perfect balance of dramatic and natural. The wand has different length applicators on either side so you can build up the mascara, flip it, and then comb through to spread the lashes. Genius.
• Charlotte Tilbury Eye Blender Brush - ⊘ - I normally prefer Real Technique brushes because they are so affordable and such high quality, but occasionally a luxe brush surprises me. This one did. It's so dang soft, you guys. It glides shadows on like a fucking magic wand or some shit. Great for the crease or any blending, it works wonders. I love it. She stays.
• Grande Cosmetics GrandeLash-MD Lash Enhancing Serum - This was a restock for me. I have been using this for about a year and my lashes definitely grew much longer. They weren't thicker, but I could always rely on mascara for that. It impressed me enough to rebuy.
• Becca Cosmetics Light Shifter Brightening Concealer - This has mixed reviews but I fucking love it. I will say, this is not a concealer for those seeking full coverage. It's much more about bringing and reflecting light to/from your undereyes. I can use it alone and it works well over skincare. I think it would work amazingly well layered over a full coverage concealer to take something that feels too matte and heavy to looking radiant. This can also double as a highlight.
• Charlotte Tilbury Magic Away Concealer - ⊘ - This is similar to the Becca, but has more coverage. The coverage is still light to medium, but buildable. Probably my favorite under eye concealer I own.
• NARS Soft Matte Complete Concealer - This is the perfect concealer to hide blemishes and spots. I wouldn't use this for underlies, but spot correcting? There's nothing better.
• Erborian CC Color Correcting & Redness Reducing Broad Spectrum SPF 25 - I have rosacea and this have been a game changer. It is silicone heavy, so I recommend using a light hand and only using this on certain areas if you aren't a fan of silicones. Otherwise this self-adjusting formula adapts to your skin tone to cover redness and holy heck, it is amazing. My husband actually stole this from me as he has that classic Irish creamy and ruddy skin - this will balance the redness instantly without ever feeling like makeup.
• Dior Nail Glow - I hate doing my nails, they always chip. I also actually prefer the "natural nail" look. I layer this over a coat of the OPI Nail Envy and it gives my nails a healthy, milky pink glow. It also lasts way longer than I expected it to - over a week for me. I don't know why I waited so long to buy this product, as it is now a staple in my arsenal.
• DermaFlash Dermapore Ultrasonic Pore Extractor & Serum Infuser *- I don't use a lot of face tools and I am generally pretty skeptical of most on the market. This brand, however, was founded by a former MedSpa owner and is extremely high quality, safe to use, and easy to use. I am a picker - I pick at my face constantly and it obviously isn't good for my skin. This device has helped cure that habit completely. The ultrasonic technology will unclog your pores with minimal effort, and you can also use this to infuse your skincare deeper into your skin. I use this maybe twice a week and have noticed the pores on my forehead and nose are significantly less clogged - and I'm not harming my skin with constant picking.
• DermaFlash LUXE Anti-Aging Dermaplaning Exfoliation Device*- You have probably seen all those super satisfying dermaplaning videos on instagram and, if you're like me, been super intrigued. This easy to use tool helps you safely achieve those results at home. I've used mine only twice but it works perfectly. The removal of baby hairs and any dry, dead skin has revealed supple, soft, fresh skin, and my products and makeup go on like a dream. I cannot wait to see more results from regular use. Just be sure to discontinue use of any acids or retinol 48 hours before and after use to avoid over-exfoliating your skin.
• Laneige Cream Skin Oil Cleanser - This gentle, fragrance free, milky cleanser has been a dream for my dry, sensitive skin. I use this first thing in the morning or as a second cleanse and it not only never strips my skin but leaves it calm and happy.
• Fresh Soy Cleanser* - This old favorite is a simple, basic, but super effective cleanser. Even my husband likes this one which says a lot because he is randomly extremely opinionated about cleansers. I use this as a second cleanse. It claims to be good at removing makeup but I don't use it for that purpose, so I cannot confirm.
• Inkey List Oat Cleansing Balm - This is constantly sold out and for good reason - for $10 this fragrance-free gentle cleansing balm will remove every trace of makeup. The tube is generously sized at 5oz, and the only issue is that it takes some serious grip power to squeeze the product out of the tube.
• Indie Lee Stem Cell Serum - I have gone through two bottles of this serum, which promises to address firmness, texture, and tone while protecting against pollution. It's super gentle but effective, my skin is always more radiant when I use it. It's more than I like to spend on skincare, but then again it actually works, so do with that what you will. Fragrance free!
• Indie Lee Squalane Serum - A more affordable Indie serum, this beauty is one of my most recommended skincare products for all skin types. Indie's squalane is rich but lightweight enough for day time. It looks beautiful under makeup if you want a gentle oil to add some glow to your moisturizer or foundation. I also apply this before I use any facial tools to add some slip. During the colder months I use this nightly for extra hydration. If not obvious, this is fragrance free.
• YTTP Adaptogen Deep Moisture Cream*- Another cult favorite, this moisturizer is just damn good. I can see why everyone loves it. Easily adaptable for any skin type, this unscented moisturizer is jam packed full of yummy goodies like squalane, ashwagandha, and fermented reishi. My only gripe is that it comes in a tub instead of a tube. It is great for day or night.
• Dr. Jart+Ceramidin Cream - A winter must have for all skin types but especially those who are dry and sensitive, this rich cream is packed with yummy ingredients to soothe even the most irritated and weather torn skin. It is fragrance free but does contain Bergamot Fruit Oil, which could potentially be irritating to anyone super sensitive. I use this at night layered with an oil.
• Boscia Chia Seed Moisture Cream - I received a sample of this beauty a while back and keep meaning to pick up the full size. The plush, bouncy cream packs a punch, is fragrance free, and is all around just gorgeous. I used it at night, so I cannot tell you if it works well with makeup or not.
• Laneige Cream Skin Mist - This mist is officially my favorite mist. I want a mist to actually do something, and this gentle, fragrance free mist is so packed with moisturizing ingredients that some people can use is as a moisturizer. Fun fact: the mist and lotion (toner/essence) are the exact same product, just different names and usage instructions.
• Tower 28 SOS Daily Mist - ⊘ - I love a mist. I mist between steps of my skincare to help products absorb better. This newbie has quickly become a favorite and I flew through it. Hold it far from your face as the spray isn't as fine as others. Yes, it is fragrance free.
• Glow Recipe Watermelon Ultra Fine Mist - The name does not lie. This mist is SO. FINE. And it smells like a watermelon jolly rancher and while I wholeheartedly hate fragrance in skincare I fucking love how this smells. The packaging is also cute as shit, so.
Lip Balms + Treatments
• Laneige Sleeping Lip Mask - An Instagram favorite, this is a nice lip balm. I think the packaging and the unique flavors is what keeps everyone coming back to this baby. I can't say that I think it is a game changer or savior for chapped lips - it's just yummy and smells delicious. I have Berry and Vanilla, but am eyeing Apple Lime.
• Hourglass No28 Treatment Oil - Unlike the above, this treatment is a game changer and deserves praise for its uncanny ability to save my lips no matter how chapped or angry they are. I put this on every night before bed and wake up with soft subtle lips every morning. I adore the applicator, as I low-key hate any product I have to use my fingers for.
• Fresh Sugar Hydrating Lip Balm - Similar to the Laneige, I think the cute packaging and fun flavors make these lip balms so collectable. Again, I'm not really a fan of products where I have to use my fingers - but these balms are actually quite nice and layer really well with lipstick. I'm eyeing the new Blood Orange flavor.
• Rosebud Strawberry Lip Balm - This is pure nostalgia - didn't we ALL use this in high school? Again, nothing life changing, but every time I see this gold tin in the checkout of Sephora I have to hold back buying one. Forever a favorite for no other reason than happy memories.
• First Aid Beauty Lab Retinol Eye Cream - For an OTC retinol product, this one is pretty decent. Take some time to slowly work in into your routine to avoid irritation. The lines under my eyes aren't gone, but were significantly less severe after a few months of regular use. You CAN overuse this - I did- and needed to take a break. Proceed SLOWLY and have patience.
• Tatcha Aburatorigami Japanese Blotting Sheets - Look, ya girl may have the driest skin this side of the equator but I still get oily. These massive blotting papers get my entire face with one sheet. I have them in my purse and at my desk at work. Love.
*All of the below items are either fragrance free or come in a fragrance free option.
• Nécessaire The Body Wash - This is not news - this is the best body wash I have ever used. It is NOT typical body wash. Nécessaire puts the care, effort, and ingredients into their body products most brands put into their $300 face serums. I prefer the unscented version of this wash, as I can use it every part of my body, even the lady bits.
• Necéssaire The Body Lotion - Hands down, the best body lotion I've ever used. I tried DOZENS in my life and could never commit to using body lotion regularly until this came into my life. It is perfect - lightweight, sumptuous, sinks in immediately, fragrance free - just buy it and thank me later.
• Nécessaire The Body Serum - Okay to save time I am just going to tell you that I fucking love literally everything from Nécessaire. Everything. Every. Single. Item. This is lightweight and lovely to use, but I especially love using this before I put on the lotion for extra hydration. You can read my full review of the Serum here and follow up here.
• Nécessaire The Hand Cream - There is a theme happening. It's fragrance free and damn near perfect. Full review here. Your dry, cracked hands from all the cold weather and hand washing deserve the lotion.
• Nécessaire The Body Exfoliator - The only product from the line other than the sex gel that I haven't written a review for - but I have reviewed this in my stories on Instagram numerous times. In short, it helps keep my body acne at bay with acids and physical exfoliation. The charcoal beads begin to breakdown while you scrub so you can't accidentally over exfoliate. I use this once or twice a week and it does wonders for keeping my body clear and (KP) bump free. I also love to use it to exfoliate my legs before shaving to avoid razor burn.
• Nécessaire The Sex Gel - If you are having penetrative sex and aren't using lube you're doing yourself a disservice. The chic packaging looks nice on a bedside table or blends in easily with your skincare if you're worried about that type of thing. The formula has no weird scent, and the packaging doesn't leak so there no sticky mess on your nightstand. It's gentle, has the perfect amount of slip, won't leave residue on your sheets or clothes...it's everything you never knew lube could be. *Pro tip - if you are new to using menstrual cups, and are having a hard time getting them in, especially on drier period days, I use a lil bit of the Sex Gel to help my cup slide into place easier.
• Amika Polished Perfecting Brush* - I haven't even looked at my straightener since this brush entered my life. It is so quick and easy to use and not only tames my hair but also gives me the look of a blowout which we all know I don't have the patience to do with a brush and dryer. Truly, I am the laziest human alive when it comes to doing my hair and this tool means it takes less than five minutes to smooth my hair. I couldn't recommend it more.
• Amika hAIR Blow Dryer Brush* - For the days when I have the time/patience - this bush is a godsend for lazy girls who still want to look like they did their hair. Let your hair air-dry like 75% then use this tool to finish the job. It legitimately gives you the blowout of your dreams with minimal effort. It weighs less than a pound so your arm won't ache, and unlike the popular Revlon version, the highest heat setting does NOT destroy your hair. My hair goes to my collarbones and it takes me about 7-10 minutes to do my whole head. Not bad for a rookie.
• Briogeo Scalp Revival Charcoal Dry Shampoo* This dry shampoo has a weird applicator, but that's fine because it works wonders. My fine hair typically gets weighed down by anything I put on it dry, but this dry shampoo gets the job done by absorbing excess oil and giving my hair a much-needed boost & lift at the roots.
• Briogeo Be Gentle, Be Kind Aloe + Oat Milk Ultra Soothing Fragrance-free Hypoallergenic Shampoo - I am ALWAYS looking for gentle, effective, fragrance free shampoos because the vast majority of shampoos I've tried breakout my hairline like no other. This is a lovely lightweight shampoo that effectively cleans my hair. Because it doesn't sud much, I ended up using a lot to get it worked through my hair, which isn't ideal. I also think my bottle is defective because the pump doesn't work well, but overall the formula is very nice. I have had zero hairline and neck breakouts and my hair is soft and clean.
• Verb Dry Shampoo Light* A classic aerosol dry shampoo, this slightly purple hued spray is a dream for my platinum locks. Lightweight and lightly scented, this is one of the only dry shampoos that does what it says and makes my hair look and feel clean again. It also comes in a dark version for brunettes.
• Verb Ghost Weightless Hair Oil - The only hair product I use other than shampoo and conditioner. I apply this silky serum to my strands before I dry it, and my hair is soft, shiny, and tangle free. Lightly scented, this has thankfully never broken me out. A little goes a long way, and you can use this on wet and dry hair.
• Nest New York Candles - If you follow me on instagram, you know I am deeply obsessed with my Nest Candles. Their throw is insane. Within 30 minutes my entire apartment will be enveloped in the scent I'm burning. For winter I highly recommend the Birchwood Pine scent - its like a fresh cut Christmas tree that still has snow on its branches. One of their most popular scents is Grapefruit, it is bright, sweet, tart, and totally intoxicating.
• Overose Candles - During the last Sephora sale I purchased Valkiria, a milky peach and fig scent, that is just gorgeous. The vessels are highly instagram-able and the throw is considerably strong. Well worth the price when you realize they are almost twice the size of a Diptyque candle and still cheaper.
What I'm Picking Up:
• Pat McGrath Labs Sublime Perfection Foundation - I have hemmed and hawed over getting this since it launched 2(?) years ago. But I feel like I have finally seen enough people review it to know I will enjoy it and know how to make it work for me. Especially as I am posting more style and makeup looks on Instagram, I want a foundation that will photograph really well.
• Pat McGrath Labs Mega Mothership - Celestial Divinity Eyeshadow Palette: Pat finally released a more afforable eyeshadow palette. You sacrifice having her signature luxury packaging and large pans, but enjoy 18 buttery, versatile shades - this is the perfect palette to grab if you haven't been able to stomach the $125 price tag of her other palettes.
• Gucci Mascara L'Obscur - Since I am hunting for a replacement for the Ilia mascara, I want to give this a try. A few friends swear by it so I hope it's worth the price!
Alright, kids, that's it! I hope this was helpful. And again, you do NOT need to shop this sale if you are not feeling it.
• An* denotes a gifted item
• This post contains affiliate links