The best Black Friday beauty sales (+ shopping guide) *Updated 11:07 AM Nov 27th

Thursday, November 26, 2015


Wait! Before you get started… don’t forget to shop using Ebates for up to 10% cash back on your orders at Sephora, Amazon, The Body Shop, and more! Sign up using my referral links here: Ebates/

Beauty deals

AHAVA (US) – Nov 24th-28th: BOGO free, plus free shipping over $50 & free samples on all orders. See my favourites from AHAVA here!

ANNABELLE COSMETICS – Nov 27th-30th: 40% off + free shipping over $40 CAD! See my product recommendations

⇒ Current favourites: Skinny Brow Liner in Universal Ebony (review), Blushon Powder Blushes (review), Smokey Nudes Eyeshadow Palette (review), and the Glitterama Liquid Eyeliners.

BIRCHBOX – Nov 27th-Dec 1st: 25% off all subscriptions and all orders over $35. Free shipping over $25. Use code BIGDEAL. See my product recommendations

⇒ The 25% off also applies-Birchbox’s full-sized products, so here are some of my must-haves: Embryolisse Lait-Crème Concentré (review), everything Clinique Chubby, Klorane Dry Shampoo, and the Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Brow Color. The Charmed Life gift set looks really cool, too — it would make an amazing already-done gift box for your best friend!

CLARINS CANADA – Nov 23rd-27th: 15% off of five full-sized sets

CULT BEAUTY – Nov 27th-30th: Use code MERRY10 for £10 off £60, MERRY20 for £20 off £100, MERRY45 for £45 off £200, or MERRY75 for £75 off £300. 


DECIEM – Nov 27th-Dec 1st: Save up to 60% on DECIEM bundles! (That’s a savings of up to $199!) Bundles start at $21 CAD, down from $53.

FOREO – Nov 27th-30th: 25% off on all devices + Free Shipping! This is Foreo’s biggest discount of the year, so if you were holding out for the best deal possible, this is it! 

⇒ Don’t miss my FOREO LUNA Mini review (& giveaway!) here.

INGLOT – Nov 26th-Dec 2nd: 20% off all products; 10% off Freedom System palettes. Free US shipping over $50.

JURLIQUE – Nov 23rd-29th: Up to 50% off sitewide. 

L’OCCITANE (CA) – Nov 26th-29th: Exclusive gift sets at marked down up to 65%! Use code NOIR for $16 sets with any $45 purchase or NOIRPLUS for $35 deluxe git sets with any $55 purchase. / Buy any 3 stocking stuffers and get a 4th one free! / Deluxe gift sets up to $85 off for a limited time. / Nov 4th-Dec 25th: Get a Magic Key for $5 with any 150ml Shea Cream with code MAGICKEY. / Nov 26th-29th: Use code DELUXE for a free deluxe holiday essentials kit with all orders over $145. / Nov 23rd-Dec 1st: Free shipping on all orders over $25, no code needed. 


MAC – Nov 27th-30th: Get a whopping 25% off all MAC holiday kits and pre-made palettes at, Nordstrom, Macy’s, and Bloomingdales! This is the best deal that I have EVER seen for MAC, so don’t miss it! Palettes start at $30 for 9 shades.

MARC JACOBS – Nov 30th: Limited edition Blacquer and brush sets; free shipping on all orders with code SHIP / Free shipping over $50 / Four free mini makeup products with code MARCDAY.

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KISS Tornado 360 Ceramic Tourmaline Ionic Dryer review, photos

KISS products tornado 360 review

The product: KISS Products Tornado 360 Ceramic Tourmaline Ionic Dryer

I had a lot of fun putting together Monday’s post, so I figured well, why not keep it up and just turn this week into something of a hair week?

The name needs a little work, I’ll admit, but I have checked out a lot of pretty cool hair products and tools recently (with more yet to come). Today’s hair feature is a pretty cool hairdryer from the drugstore by KISS!

KISS Tornado 360 air booster review

The technology: KISS touts their Tornado dryer as a revolutionary tool that minimizes heat damage with a “360˚ rotating air booster,” which basically just means that this dryer comes with a unique-looking attachment that whirs around and redirects air into a larger circle. 

The “Air Booster” promises to save time, promote even heat distribution, and replace the need for shaking the dryer — which, I mean, is that a thing? Because I’ve always done it, but the more I think about it, the more I think it might just be one of those weird things that we all think you’re supposed to do but actually totally aren’t, like putting bobby pins into your mouth or shaking a Polaroid.

KISS tornado 360 ceramic blow dryer review

The specs: The Tornado 360˚ dryer is a 1875 hairdryer weighing (according to Amazon) 2.09 lbs. It features 3 temperature levels and 2 airflow levels, and can be used alone or with an attachment head (the Air Booster or a conventional flattened concentrator, both included). It uses ceramic tourmaline ion technology to reduce frizz and is powered by 1875 watts.

It’s also, it is worth noting, kind of big. It’s still within normal range, but it’s on the bulkier side of things.

KISS dryer review concentrator attachment

KISS Tornado 360 dryer review

In practice: I liked the KISS Tornado dryer, and I liked the concept behind it, but… well, it definitely didn’t dry my hair 3x faster, as promised. And, while the air booster tornado-maker thingy is nifty, it’s also quite noisy, and it makes this dryer produce a whIRR! whIRR! whIRR! noise instead of a HHHHH hum.

I really like that the temperature and airflow controls are separate, but this dryer just feels a little too heavy and bulky for what it is, you know? It gets my hair dried a little faster than my last dryer (a 10-year-old Conair relic), but for the weight trade-off, I think I might just end up going back to my old guy — chipped lacquer and all.

Drugstore blow dryer review KISS tornado

The verdict?

At $24, I think this hair dryer is a great buy: it gets the job done quickly, and the controls are great. However, at $35, I hesitate to recommend it — it is, after all, pretty heavy and bulky, and while it’s not bad by any means, I’m kinda hoping that there’s still something better out there.

So, if you have a favourite dryer under $50, please let me know what it is in the comments. My search for the perfect drugstore blow dryer continues!

Availability: $24 USD/$34.96 CAD at Walmart (US & Canada).

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Give the GiftofGOLD with Kérastase

Monday, November 23, 2015

Kerastase Gift of Gold

I like to get all of my holiday shopping done before, if possible, the second week of December. It’s a great setup: you start planning in July, finish up in November, and then you have all of December to bake cookies, hang tinsel, and pick a tree.

That being said, “like to” and “actually do” are two very, very different things. So, if you’re just starting your holiday gift acquisition right now, here’s a little something to help you get started!

Kerastase Bain Densité shampoo review

Kérastase PARIS is running a great promotion in all Kérastase PARIS salons and on the website right now: buy a styling product and conditioner and get the corresponding shampoo free!

They’re calling it the Gift of Gold promo, and it’s a haircare lover’s dream. The gift sets start at $83 CAD, and there are eleven sets available, including:

Kerastase Densifique Masque Densite review

There aren’t a ton of silicone-free Kérastase PARIS products, but I’ve been testing some of the Chronologiste and Densifique ranges this month.

Densifique comes packaged in simple, pretty, champagne-beige packaging, and the Mousse Densimorphose, Bain Densité (shampoo), and Masque Densité (conditioner) are all ‘cone-free. I’d like more hydration for my already-dry prairie hair, but a little goes a long way with this range! I use about 1/3 of my normal amount of shampoo with Kérastase, and it’s still more than enough.

Kerastase Chronologiste Scalp Exfoliator

The coolest product that I tested from the gift sets, however, was definitely the Chronologiste Revitalizing Exfoliating Care Rinse-Out Pre-Shampoo treatment. The Chronologiste line is gorgeously packaged to begin with (that black! That gold!), and the treatment is silicone-free.

To use, you take a large dollop of the Revitalizing Exfoliating Care, work it through your hair in sections, and massage it onto the scalp for five minutes before rinsing out. It’s a little hard on the arms, but quite unique overall: the product is flecked with gold and red for a great sensory experience, and it does a great job of exfoliating away any little scalp-flakies that the winter has “gifted” upon you!

Kérastase Chronologiste review scalp and hair exfoliator (more…)

BISC Vol.20: ​​What’s your most memorable makeup mishap?

Sunday, November 22, 2015


What’s your most memorable makeup mishap?

RAE | Canada | the Notice: a beauty blog

My most memorable makeup mishap? Oh, dude.

Let’s set the stage: this year, I started wearing Stila’s Stay All Day Waterproof Brow Color in my brows. I store all of my liners and brow products standing up point-down in a tin together, so it lives next to a gorgeous green Lise Watier liquid liner that happens to have similar packaging…

Long story short, one bleary morning, I gave myself half of a very vivid, very green eyebrow before realizing my mistake, and now I double-check all of my pen-type products before putting them to my face!

AGATA | USA | Her and Makeup

I was trying really hard to come up with the answer for this week’s question and I searched my memory really deep. I came to a conclusion that I usually play safe with my makeup because I don’t really recall any makeup mishaps. The only one I can think of is when I was 18 or 19 years old my mom got me for Christmas a beautiful shimmering powder from a Swedish brand Oriflame and since I didn’t know any better (before the times of strobing and highlighting), I used to apply it all over my face, like a regular powder. I can only imagine what my face looked like, all shimmery and shiny like a disco ball! Fortunately, I don’t have any pictures to remind me of that!

ERIN | USA | Clever Girl Reviews

I’m pretty sure I’ve never had an epic mishap! Back in the 80’s and 90’s I wore too much powder, that’s for sure!


ANNE | Germany | Linda, Libra, Loca

The one time I left for Mexico and forgot to close my foundation properly before throwing it in the suitcase! I was left with no foundation for my face and no clean clothes, ready to start a three weeks road trip…

As far as application is concerned, probably assuming that Cleopatra-style eyeliner in teal is the right thing to wear to school for a 17 year old Blonde.

My parents surely believed in personal freedom to let me leave the house like that!

MATROMAO | Philippines | FoodWorldMe

I can easily think of the pink-toned BB cream I used to wear back in college. I was all for following the Korean beauty trend without first taking into account my own skin tone and skin type. The white cast and the color mismatch are obvious in photos, so I don’t do a lot of throwbacks to that period.

MELISSA | Switzerland | Kiss & Make-up

When I first got into make-up I was still blissfully unaware of the importance of blending, so I would just apply my eyeshadow without smudging or sheering it out at the edges. Needless to say I looked very panda-esque for a while. And then I also committed some serious beauty crimes when I first started using foundation. Let me tell you, finding the right color took a lot of trial and error. Heck, even now it’s not always easy to get the shade just right. Foundation is one tricky sob!

JAA | Thailand | Hello Jaa

This happened to me very recently! It was a very important day but I didn’t plan enough time to do my makeup in the morning. I decided to do a quick and simple eye makeup using the least amount of products possible. I’m usually very careful about what I use to tightline but on that day for some reason I just used the very same glittery liner that I just used to line my upper lash line to tightline, too! Long story short, it was a long and exhausting day of constantly trying to remove the glittery bits from my contact lens! My eyes also watered really badly the whole day!

[Interested in joining BISC Network? Send your request to jaa*at*]

Fresh Sugar Lip Serum Advanced Therapy review, photos

Friday, November 20, 2015

Fresh Sugar Lip Serum review

The product: Fresh Sugar Lip Serum Advanced Therapy

I skipped over the Fresh Sugar Advanced Therapy Lip Serum ($35 USD/$41 CAD) while reviewing the Fresh Sugar Lip Lovers set yesterday, but with good reason: I wanted to give it a full review today for everyone else who has been curious about this one.

Fresh Advanced Lip Therapy Serum review

The premise: Lip serums are becoming more and more popular nowadays, but they’re still a rarity in the beauty world. Fresh’s Sugar Lip Serum is one of just a few that I can think of. I know that Lancer and Murad do one, and the Hourglass No. 28 Lip Treatment Oil and NIOD Lip Bio-Lipid Concentrate are similar, but nothing else comes to mind.

The Sugar Lip Serum Advanced Therapy is made to nourish the lips and improve definition, so maybe I’m not the best candidate for it — after all, I’m not really in the market for “fuller, younger-looking lips.” But I had hoped that all of those skin-firming amino acids would result in a more hydrated, plush lip area, so I did as I was told and dispensed a drop every morning and night to spread over my lips. 

Fresh Sugar Advanced Lip Therapy Serum review

The practice: Sadly, after using this one on and off for a month and a half, I can’t report that I saw results with this one. My lip contour area was not “immediately nourished and soothed;” my lips did not look “firmer and toned;” the serum did not immediately decrease lip roughness.

Instead, I found that this serum tasted bad, made my lips feel tight, and needed a healthy heaping of lip balm immediately thereafter to prevent dryness and cracking. Not only did it not smooth my lip area, I think it actually dried out my lips — and while I know that it doesn’t promise to be the ultimate nourishing lip balm, I certainly don’t think a lip product should dry out your lips!

Fresh Sugar Advanced Lip Therapy Serum review

The verdict?

I’m really glad that I tried this one out, because as cool as I think it is, and as much as I adore its packaging, I think it’s a solid “fail” for me. I’ll continue using up this mini bottle if I can, just to see if I get results at any point, but for now… I’m not impressed.

The Fresh Sugar Lip Serum made my lips feel tight and dry, and comes with a metaphorically bitter $41 CAD price tag and a literally bitter formula. I say skip this serum, spend your $40 on a new pair of Fresh Tinted Lip Treatments, and apply an anti-ageing moisturizer to your lip area instead!

Availability:$35 USD/$41 CAD at Sephora.

Keep reading! »

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