Shopping the Sephora Clearance Rack: 7/8/14 Edition

Growing up with a single parent, I grew up with a love for deals and discounts well-ingrained. One of my favorite things to do in that regard is what I call the “Sephora clearance creep” – I seriously check their sale section online at least 3-4x per week. I’ve learned a few things from this constant canvassing, and today I want to share them with you!

  • Limited-edition items – whether they’re individual products, sets, or palettes – will almost always end up on sale within a few months, assuming of course that they don’t sell out. So if you see a gorgeous Tarte or Too Faced set or are lusting after one of their Sephora + PANTONE Color of the Year products and can be patient, the object of your desire will most likely turn up in the clearance pages soon enough. I recently managed to snag the absolutely gorgeous Sephora + PANTONE Color Gaze Brush Set this way – when it was first introduced, I fell in love with the gorgeous radiant orchid themed brushes and the continuing parade of glowing reviews only cemented my desire. I waited, though, and sure enough it got discounted and I was able to snap it up for only $38! Now I have a fab brush set and I didn’t have to break the bank to get it, all because I was willing to both wait and keep checking back!
  • Sephora updates the sale section very, very often. You’ll see new items on almost a day to day basis if you check frequently enough. They do tend to discount high-demand, non-limited items every so often; I usually see Peter Thomas Roth and Tarte items do a sort of blink-and-you’ll-miss-it appearance at least a few times per month. These items tend to sell out REALLY fast – like, within a day at most usually – so when you see a non-discontinued brand or item pop up in the sale pages, make your purchase decision sooner rather than later. Do note, however, that most of these items are nearing their sell-by date – they won’t be expired when they get to you or anything, but you should plan on using them when you get them rather than putting them into a backlog.
  • If an item you’ve been waffling over disappears from the sale section, don’t despair – keep checking back. I’ve seen items go out of stock and then reappear, still discounted. My pet theory is that they’re getting in the stock from their brick and mortar locations after the items have been taken off the floor, and that’s why you can sometimes see a particular item or set vanish and rematerialize several times over a few months. Examples lately would be the Disney special edition cosmetics – the Ariel lipglosses and nail polish set has been popping in and out for about six months at this point, likewise the DKNY Delicious perfumes have been there and back again quite often!
  • Definitely read the reviews before making any buys! Some items are discounted because Sephora just overestimated how much stock they’d realistically move of that certain product, but others languish for ages as nobody buys them because they’re simply not very good items. Case in point is the Sephora + PANTONE Nail Ambrosia Trio – the colors appear lovely, but the reviews are abysmal. While you can always go out on a limb and then fall back on their excellent return policy, IMO if you’ve got like twenty people in a row claiming that a nail polish set, for example, arrived dried out and nigh unusable, I personally wouldn’t even bother.
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With all that said, I thought it would be fun for me to put together a semi-regular feature where I spotlight the items from the sale section that I’ve either recently purchased or am plotting to buy soon. Let’s give it a shot, shall we?

Sugar House Lane

Nails Inc. Sprinkles Special Effects Polish – $5 – Only one color (Sugar House Lane) is still in stock, but if that color scheme appeals to you, I’d personally snap this one up. I bought the pastel blue version, Pudding Lane, a few months ago, and I was really happy with how it looked – I’ll have to do swatches for it when I get my camera situation sorted. It definitely looks like some kind of sweet candy with its sprinkles and lovely finish!

The X Look

Formula X The X Look Set – $13 – I actually bought this last month and was happy to find that, despite being a Christmas 2013 set, the polishes are still very fresh and easy to use. I’ve actually got Atom & Eve from this set on my toes right now! The set gives you mini sizes of four Formula X polishes: Atom & Eve, Mr. Positivity, Dark Matter, and Bond, Ionic Bond as well as two sets of nail accent appliqu├ęs. If you’re interested in at least two of the colors, at this price I’d say go for it!

Boscia Summer Skin Duo

Boscia Summer Skin Duo – $38 – I have this in my basket at the moment, actually! I’ve been all about trying new SPF products and BB creams this summer, and I’ve generally been quite pleased with Boscia whenever I’ve tried their products. This set was originally $78, which to me was wayyy overpriced for a sunscreen and BB cream duo, but at it’s current price point it becomes far more appealing. You get a 1.7 fl oz Daily Defense Sunscreen Broad Spectrum SPF 50 PA+++ (supposedly with anti-aging ingredients as well) and a 1.75 fl oz B.B. Cream Bronze Broad Spectrum SPF 27 PA++ (lowish SPF for my taste, but it supposedly gives you a sun-kissed look with some coverage/blurring of imperfections). Assuming a good promo code comes along in time, I plan on grabbing this set!

Too Faced Candy Bar

Too Faced Candy Bar Pop-Out Makeup Palette & Phone Case – $15 – I have a huge weakness for cute palettes, especially when they focus on shades of nudes or browns. This palette definitely falls into that, but I’m putting my foot down as I already have quite a few veeeeerry similar palettes. If I had an iPhone, I’d justify it just for the cute chocolate bar phone case, but I don’t… so no candy bar for me, sadly!

Maracuja Blush & Glow

Tarte Maracuja Blush & Glow – $16 – I’ve heard a lot of good things about this product. It’s just that, similar to my palette problem, I’m a sucker for peachy blushes and thus have too many already! So while Sunlight is definitely tempting me, I’m going to resist. I think. However, it is a gorgeous product – check out the review and swatches for it that Muse did awhile back As of this writing, only Sunlight is in stock, but that can always change.

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Bronze & Glow

Tarte Bronze & Glow Matte Bronzer & Cheek Tint – $16 – This is sooo tempting as it also nets rave reviews (once again, Muse did a lovely swatch and write-up of this item) but I simply don’t use bronzer enough to make buying this a good choice. I just got a VIB-size of the Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Matte Bronzer and I’ve got the Holika Holika Love Fantasy Blusher in Choco en route to me from Korea at the moment (see Cominica’s review/swatches here, it’s such a cute product!), so I feel like I’m pretty stocked on bronzers for now.

Radiant Femme Set

SEPHORA+PANTONE UNIVERSE
The Face: Radiant Femme Artistry Set – $39
– Another big one on my wishlist, this set features a group of products all based on the 2014 “color of the year” called radiant orchid. It happens to be a gorgeous and wearable pink, so I’m finding this year’s batch of products much more interesting than last year’s emerald offerings. You get a cute cosmetic bag, a unique chrome nail polish shade, a liquid liner, a cream blush, a matte lipstick, and a face/body luminizer. I’m just dawdling in hopes that the price goes down a bit more, honestly.

Formula X Press Pods

Formula X Press Pods – $24 – I’ve been really pleased with all the Formula X polishes and products that I’ve tried so far, so this set really appeals to me. You get 24 shades, each with just enough polish for one manicure. Sounds like a pretty fun way to try a bunch of colors IMO! Similar to the Boscia SPF set, I’m pretty much just trying to hold out for a good promo code to swoop in and snap this up.

Formula X Holograms

Formula X Hologram Polishes – $6 – Like I said above, I really dig the Formula X brand. I’ve been wanting to try the Hologram finish, and it just so happens that the only color left in stock (Voodoo, a fuschia shade) is the one I was most interested in grabbing. It’s in my bag!

So, what about you guys? See anything you plan on grabbing? Or do you already have any of the items I’ve mentioned? If you do, I’d love to hear what you think about some of my possible future purchases!I’ll probably do more posts like this once the clearance section has changed enough that I have enough new wants for another post. This way I can pretend that my window shopping is productive, right?

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