Sephora’s Urban Decay Event Report 2/15

In the scheme of things, Sephora is pretty new to me. I did not live particularly close to one until they opened one in my local mall’s JCPenney store. They did not have events and classes right away because they opened right before the madness of holiday shopping struck. Now that things have settled down, they started offering events – I had shopped there, but never attended one.

On a whim, I checked earlier this month and found (to my delight) that they were hosting an Urban Decay event. I recently reconnected with a friend who I knew was also a UD lover, so I gushed about it to her – we made plans to go. After that, I realized I had no idea what to expect and the only information listed on Sephora’s site was:

Enjoy a complimentary makeup application featuring Urban Decay’s iconic Naked collection. Receive tips from our beauty experts–and get a free gift.

It also said you had to be enrolled in Sephora’s Beauty Insider program to participate (but you can enroll at the store!) and that because space is limited, you should call to make sure they aren’t already full. Fair enough – I called, was greeted by a friendly employee who took down our names and the time we would be coming in. Cool, I jumped that hurdle.

But what else should we know? Should we come in bare-faced, or are they just going to do an eye look? How long does it take? Are we expected to spend a certain dollar amount in order to participate?

A friendly acquaintance from high school is actually a makeup artist for Sephora these days, albeit in a different city. I asked him what he would prefer from clients – though it is best and easiest for everyone to come in clean, moisturized, but otherwise bare-faced, they will be happy to hand over a makeup removing wipe.

Because I don’t like wasting effort (or product), I arrived bare-faced. We arrived at our appointed time and were greeted and welcomed to Sephora Urban Decay Event by the (awesome, might I add) artists; they let us get settled at the vanity and decided on a look together. There were a few template looks, or they said they could create something unique. I felt adventurous and went with the unique option – my artist applied a full-face including Urban Decay’s facial primer (if there are more than one, I can’t remember which) actually, here’s a list:

  • Naked Skin foundation
  • 24/7 Concealer pencil
  • UDPP
  • Naked3 palette for shadow
  • 24/7 liner pencil (I cannot for the life of me remember which shade)
  • Big Fatty Mascara
  • Naked Flushed for blush
  • Naked Skin Ultra Definiton Pressed Powder
  • Revolution Lipstick in Naked
  • All Nighter Setting Spray

My artist was attentive and made sure I was comfortable the entirety of the time – colors, intensity, etc. Once complete, the finished look was great – it took maybe a little over a half hour from start to finish. The women in our store even went so far as to bake and decorate UD-themed cupcakes which I found to be a very nice surprise. We weren’t pressured to buy anything, but we were invited to shop around afterwards and that they’d hold our gifts at the register before we left. They were in reach when we had questions (except for a brief moment when they were all helping others, which is fair), but it never felt as though they were crowding us.

I definitely did expect a little pressure to buy so the lack of it was very nice – I’m thrilled to share that it was not the case. We obviously talked about products, but it was a legitimate conversation, not pushing; not being sold to. Granted, that might depend on the employee and the local store but if you were avoiding an event like this for fear of sales pressure, give it a shot and approach it with an open mind.

Once we finished up, we were given our gifts, which I talked about here. Here’s a look – it is one of their full-sized polishes and a TSA-approved clear plastic travel bag. Though the polish didn’t blow my mind, it is still a neat gift (that I was definitely excited to try out – and write about!)


In the past, I’ve heard a lot of sass about Sephora employees being too sassy, judgmental, etc. and that some people have been deterred from shopping there – this made me nervous before my first time in my local store. Obviously YMMV, but I had a great experience with the event and with every time I’ve been to mine. If you enjoy Urban Decay products and your Sephora is hosting an Urban Decay Event soon, I recommend checking it out.

Olay Fresh Effects BB Cream

I received a sample foil of the new Olay Fresh Effects BB Cream in Light to Medium recently, and because I was feeling kind of blah but not blah enough to break out my foundation, I ripped the sucker open to slap it on my face. This is the first product I have written about that I did not bother to research before slapping it on my face – crazy. I felt like living on the edge, I guess. I had no idea what kind of marketing or claims were associated with this product other than that it is new, it is from Olay, and it is listed as a BB Cream.

Here’s what the Olay site has to say:

Finish your daily beauty regimen with the all-in-one solution with 6 skin-perfecting benefits:

• Refreshes skin instantly
• Brightens for a radiant glow
• Evens tone with a splash of sheer color
• Hydrates for 24 hours
• Smoothes for softer feeling skin
• Protects against UV damage with SPF 15
• Infused with essence of honeysuckle and white tea

As far as my experience (which, again, occurred before I checked the product out) – the contents of the foil packet felt light on the pads of my fingers and was easy to apply – smoothing it on and blending it out was easy with just my fingers thanks to the light consistency. Though it looked pretty opaque when squeezed from the packet onto my fingers, I found that it was actually quite sheer as I applied it to my face. Using my lighted mirror as well as varying mirrors and levels of lighting, I tried (and failed, fortunately!) to see any lines where the color was showing or off – although I did not see any harsh lines, this did pull a warmer on me than my skin actually is.

Although the Fresh Effects BB Cream’s packaging says that it is, well, a BB Cream, it then indicates that it is a, “skin perfecting tinted moisturizer.” The distinction is important – although a lot of popular Western brands are trying to cash in on the BB cream market, most offerings are not really BB Creams, and are typically just tinted moisturizers with the addition of sunscreen – meaning they are not actually alternatives to foundations and so forth. This product, though it felt nice going on, is entirely too thin to be a true BB Cream.

The first trait of this product that struck me, though, was not how light it felt, how easily it applied, or how sheer it was – it was the scent. As it turns out, Olay Fresh Effects BB Cream really means, “Olay heavily perfumed BB Cream.” If you are familiar with the fragrance used in Olay’s Quench line of body washes, lotions, etc. — it is that scent, or something very close to it. I’m indifferent to the scent as a body product but for the love of cats why would you add that to a face product and not warn people? Not thrilled with that aspect at all, especially as I started sneezing shortly after putting it on. I do not have any known allergies (unknown-unknowns, etc) to anything in this stuff, but I abhor strongly scented products that are designed to linger on my face (i.e., moisturizer, foundation, etc).

Because I only had a foil pack, I don’t have any pictures for you, so we’ll live with a stock photo.

Now, to tackle the claims:

Refreshes skin instantly – The fact that it feels moisturizing is quite nice, and that may be what they mean – but something like this should not be applied onto anything but freshly washed skin that shouldn’t already need refreshing.
Brightens for a radiant glow – I do not feel that it brightened my complexion but it does leave a dewy finish, but doesn’t appear to be shimmery like some products boasting radiance have.
Evens tone with a splash of sheer color – The product does have sheer color, but if you have anything other than light splotchiness, you may want something heavier duty like a Korean BB Cream or straight-up foundation because this is little more than a tinted moisturizer.
Hydrates for 24 hours – Nope. Not in the winter, anyway. Beyond that, do not forget that this, and products like it, are cosmetics. Wash your face before bed!
Smoothes for softer feeling skin – Immediately after applying, my skin did feel slightly softer than before I applied, but otherwise my skin felt normal throughout the day.
Protects against UV damage with SPF 15 – It is true that this product contains sunscreen, but like any sunscreen it is recommended that you reapply. Don’t be that person reapplying tinted moisturizer without removing the old layer, okay? It will not be flattering.
Infused with essence of honeysuckle and white tea – Great, I like both of those things – unfortunately neither of those were what the smell is. White tea has antioxidants, but I can’t imagine the concentration in this product is high enough to combat a thing.

This is by no means a bad product, but it is important to recognize it for what it is – a tinted moisturizer, not an actual BB Cream. If scented facial products do not bother you, Olay Fresh Effects BB Cream is available online and at drugstores for between $10-14. Between the dewy finish (not cute for me, I have some pores that were a little obvious) and the smell that I just could not get past, I washed it off when I got home and will not be purchasing a full sized tube.

Disclosure: Hey! There are some affiliate links in here, thought you might want to know. There’s more info on the About page.

Maybelline Baby Lips Dr Rescue

Confession: I am a lip balm fiend.

I have more of them than I can probably count, ranging from the classic Cherry ChapStick to the L’Oreal Color Riche LeBalm, to the fun EOS balm spheres. When Maybelline was first taking a stab at their Baby Lips line, I was actually invited to a BzzAgent campaign for them. They were decent, but I wasn’t fond of the aftertaste they left. Recently-ish, Maybelline released its medicated Baby Lips Dr Rescue line. I picked one up at Target to check out.

Maybelline Baby Lips Dr Rescue packaging - front

The Baby Lips Dr Rescue is similarly-packed in comparison to its predecessors. It features a longline, clear cap (though the Dr Rescue has a label around the cap that allows the bullet to just peak through). The entire base twists to advance the product up through the tube.

Maybelline Baby Lips Dr Rescue

I meant to get Pink Me Up but accidentally grabbed this shade, called Coral Crave. It is medicated with menthol, which initially turned me off of it – I love minty things, but I am not such a fan of mentholated ones. Fortunately, the menthol smell/taste does not linger more than a couple minutes, so it won its way back into favor.

Maybelline Baby Lips Dr Rescue - cap off

Both on my lips and in the swatch below, the color is very very sheer. I did swatch with a light hand, but I can’t imagine it would be that much more opaque had I used more pressure or applied more coats.

Maybelline Baby Lips Dr Rescue swatch

Here’s the back, as per usual. I actually did not pay attention to the back until I was writing this post – it says to apply not more than 3-4 times per day.

Maybelline Baby Lips Dr Rescue packaging - back

My lips were not chapped when I tried this product (remember that lip balm fiend part? yeah, they don’t get chapped often), so I am not able to confirm whether or not it helps in that regard – but I’ll update if I can confirm either way. (Also this is completely silly, but the name sounds reminds me of Doctor Girlfriend from the Venture Bros. and it just makes me laugh.)

Have you tried any of the Baby Lips Dr Rescue products?

Urban Decay Nail Polish Update

Here’s an update on how my Urban Decay Nail polish in Vice is wearing. Normal growth and tip wear on both hands. Minor minor chipping on my left thumb.


Until about three hours ago, when this happened:


Giant chunk out of my left fore-finger. This has actually been an abnormal week in that I have put even LESS stress on my hands and nails than normal. It has been less than 72 hours since application. Disappoint.

I’ve got to say – although the color is lovely, this polish is overpriced ($15/bottle) considering its mediocre quality. I’d be perfectly content if Urban Decay stuck to what they do best.

Urban Decay Nail Polish

Urban Decay Nail Polish

Years ago, cult favorite Urban Decay had nail polish offerings. At some point, they were discontinued to the woe of many fans (and the joy of eBay scalpers). Recently, UD reintroduced the collection and each season new shades are chosen Thanks to an Urban Decay event hosted by my local Sephora (more on that another time), I received a full-sized Urban Decay nail polish for free along with this little PVC TSA-approved (oh buddy!) travel bag. This polish retails for $15 and can be purchased directly from Urban Decay or from Sephora.

Urban Decay Nail Polish in Vice - applied

Swatched here in shabby lighting, all except the ringfinger are topped with Seche Vite and and the ringfinger has the China Glaze matte topcoat. Regarding the polish itself: it is a gorgeous deep purple with almost an amber shimmer (in the bottle) that translates to shimmery purple awesome on the nails. This Urban Decay Nail Polish shade is Vice and is UD through and through.

That said, I am not the biggest fan of the formula. While it was definitely opaque in two coats, it dries too fast – like when you’re making your third stripe down the center of your nail to finish the coat, I had it, “skip” a little where it overlaps the first swipe to the side because it was already tacky from drying too quickly. My attempts to fix it without scrapping it and redoing the whole nail were in vain. Polish that dries fast is usually a blessing, but when it causes you to have to redo two nails, it is a pain. Otherwise, the formula is smooth and of a nice viscosity. On a final note, I am quite fond of the wider brushes that grace OPI and Sally Hansen brushes, so I was a little disappointed by this relatively standard-width brush.

Urban Decay Nail Polish in Vice

I can tell how jealous you are of my excellent lighting that makes my fingers look far cooler-toned than they are. I hope you can see the lettering on the cap – if not, I’ll have nicer pictures in a later post.

Urban Decay Nail Polish in Vice - Cap

Cutesy skull detailing – again, I apologize for the lighting. I was using my ancient camera. The skull has roses for eyes.

Though it is definitely a pretty shade, and though I am a Urban Decay fan, I must admit I would not buy this polish. I have a hard enough time with $10-12 for gel polish. The formula seems pretty typical for a decent polish that I can buy for (at MSRP) $5-8 each, and I just do not wear deep purples enough to make it worth it to me. Glad I got it free! Have you tried any Urban Decay Nail Polishes from the current or from previous collections? How did you like it?

More Info: Olay Pro-X Advanced Cleansing System

Olay Pro-X

Olay Pro-X Advanced Cleansing System - back

I have written about the Olay Pro-X before, and, as promised, wanted to deliver a more-robust review. You will notice that the images depict some slight discoloration at the “seams” of the device – we have hard-ish water, but I assure you it is clean, just well-used. I do not approve of sharing photos of filth. Here is the back of the device, complete with logo on the battery cover. The larger of the two grey buttons is the power button, the smaller is the speed control. The Pro-X has two speeds: normal and gentle. This device does not have a timer like some higher-end devices do, so you are advised by Olay to time yourself for about a minute.

Olay Pro-X Advanced Cleansing System - side

Here’s a profile shot of it to give you an idea of the thickness. The Olay Pro-X is a small, lightweight device – fairly travel friendly. The bristles are bent because I was not careful enough about letting it dry after its last use. They snap back with no complaints after your next use. Though other devices position the buttons on the bristle-side of the brush, it is no more difficult or inconvenient to use, given the device’s small form-factor.

Olay Pro-X Advanced Cleansing System - front

There’s nothing interesting on the “front” side of the device except the brush head itself. Olay currently only offers one brush so far (not counting the sponge thing for their Microdermabrasion stuff – but that is new-new, and I have not tried it), and the bristles are pretty long and soft. I have had no issues with them on either speed – but then again I do not have sensitive skin. If you have, or suspect you have sensitive skin, start on the lower speed juuust in case. While using it, if you apply too much pressure, the bristles are so soft that they have a good bit of “give” to them – so don’t mash it up against your face or you will just make your bristles wonky and you’ll be wasting your time.

Olay Pro-X - brush head removed

Pro-X brush heads are not overly expensive to replace at $7-8 for two. Olay did not include any guidelines on how frequently to replace them, but I wound up doing it every 3-4 months, at the same time I changed my toothbrush’s brush head. Popping the brush head off is easy – hold the device, grab the plastic “back” of the brush head and gentle pull free; it pops right off. Doing so reveals the pentagonal post it sits on that is rotated by the motor and really does all the work of this device.

Olay Pro-X - back of brush head

This is the back of the brush head. Nothing exciting here, really – let’s move along. In fact, let’s move along to the most infuriating, ridiculous part of this contraption: replacing the batteries.

“Hi!” it says. “I’m the Olay Pro-X! I’m a friendly little critter until I start behaving sluggishly and you have to replace my batteries. Then I am a horrible fiend!” It’s okay, friendly reader. I’ve been where you are. I had to look it up, too, because I was about to bash it off the counter because while it obviously has to open somehow, it is not obvious how.

Because I do not have extra arms, I couldn’t really show you ALL of this and take a picture. So I’ll walk you through it and hopefully this picture will help. With the “back” of the device facing you, firmly grasp the body of the device in one hand. With the other, place your forefinger and thumb on the bottom battery cover. I find it easiest to brace my thumb against one side and my finger against the other, kind of how I have shown here. Pull down and to the right (a rocking motion sometimes helps!), and this it will pop open. Be careful until you have the hang of it – you don’t want to apply too much force lest you break it.

Olay Pro-X - how to open

Once you have triumphed, it will look like this. The bottom piece comes off completely, and there ARE battery guides to show you which side should be positive-up, etc. The Olay Pro-X takes AA batteries and comes with a standard pair of alkalines. After they died, I switched to rechargeables. Swap your batteries, and the cover snaps right back in place without problems. This was my only substantial complaint about this device.

This device is waterproof and does have a rubber O-ring to protect areas from water exposure. I stored mine in the shower and had no issues aside from a little discoloration. With daily usage (one time per day), I got about 4-6 months out of a set of batteries – not bad, all things considered. I never felt that it was too harsh on my skin or that I was over-exfoliating (I hear people tend to overdo it with higher-end devices). I’ve used different cleansers with it without issue (though I wouldn’t use this to OCM). Its maintenance is not costly if you go with rechargeable batteries and watch for sales on brush heads. I would caution against using this device on the thin, delicate skin in your eye area; the Olay Pro-X cleans manually via spinning the brush head. The spinning motion could tug a little on the eye area which most now know is inadvisable.

In summation, it is a nice entry-level skincare brush with few bells-and-whistles. A welcome upgrade from a washcloth, it would make a thoughtful gift for someone into skincare, who wears makeup, or someone who perhaps struggles with acne. They are available for $20-30 in most drugstores, mass-retailers (Wal-Mart, Target), and online via retailers like Amazon,,, and others.

Disclosure: This wasn’t sponsored! That said, some of the links in this post are affiliate links – this means I may get a very small percentage of the sale if you decide to buy something. I will only ever tell you that something is awesome if I tested it myself and believe that.