Yesterday my mom and I decided to take a quick trip across the border to shop in Buffalo. This isn’t something we do often anymore; the dollar sucks and we’re super lucky to have all of our favourite stores in Canada now, but we had a day off and nothing to do.
One of my favourite things to shop for is makeup (obviously!), so I requested a special pit stop at Ulta Beauty. The first thing we saw when we entered the store was a promotion for a 14 piece Ulta Beauty Collection gift bag with $19.50 Ulta brand purchase. I love these types of promotions, so I knew I’d be leaving with one no matter what. I browsed the store for about 20 minutes (with the price of the American dollar in the back of my mind) before deciding I’d just get the $19.50 purchase and be on my way. Since the promotion was only on Ulta products, the section of their house brand was completely picked over (disappointing!), so I opted to purchase an Ulta Buffing Brush and two Ulta Small Super Blender Sponges. You can never go wrong with new brushes!
I decided to use all of the products in my gift bag to do my make up today and give a little mini review on each of them!
I started with a fresh face and applied the Ulta Professional Flawless Primer. I was surprised to see that it was a green primer, typically to cover redness, which I don’t have, but the primer felt really nice on my skin, kept my face looking matte, and helped my makeup stay intact all day. I wouldn’t purchase this primer in the future, but I think it did a great job, and I’ll continue to use the sample size. I then applied my trusty Estee Lauder Doublewear Foundation, Urban Decay Concealer, Anastasia Contour Kit, and moved onto blush and highlighter.
The gift bag included a duo Blush/Highlighter, which I was excited for as the colours were really pretty. I used the Ulta Buffing Brush to apply the Apricot blush, and was quickly disappointed. The blush is not a colour they routinely carry, and with good reason; it had zero colour pay off. I also thought it would make a good eye shadow colour, but even with the dense Buffing Brush, the powder does not show on the skin. The Ulta Illuminating Powder was in the shade Yellow Diamond and I used the Ulta Blush Brush to apply it. This had a nice subtle glow that I would use for an everyday makeup look. However, I have many illuminators in my collection, and this doesn’t compare, but I think for a beginner, or a brow bone highlight, this does the trick.
Moving onto eyebrows, I am a die hard Anastasia Dipbrow fan and I never use pencil, but I am always willing to give a new product a try. The Ulta Brow Pencil in warm brown luckily matched my brows perfectly. The pencil was really creamy, easy to get product on the skin, and the spooley is great quality, but the product was too smudgey, and the pencil dulled too quickly, which is not something I’m willing to compromise.
The eye shadow palette featured 6 shadows; I started with the Full Moon shade on my lid. It had a bit too much glitter for my liking, and had a ton of fall out, but the colour payoff was great. I tried to use Romance in the crease, and it didn’t show up on my skin, so I used Brownie, which did blend quite well, but again a lot of fall out. I also tried Give Me Gold, which also did not show up on my skin. I am a medium skin tone, so it’s a shame these colours did not show up on me. The shadows all had too much fall out, which is something that typically happens with low quality products, and with most of them not showing up on my skin, this palette will not be making an appearance in my makeup routine. The gift bag included two smaller eye shadow brushes which I did enjoy, the Ulta Small Eye Shadow Brush was great for packing colour on the lid, and the Ulta Large Eye Shadow Brush, which was not “large,” but did do a great job of blending out the darker crease colour.
The Ulta Dual Ended Liner features Halo, a pearl white colour, and Black/Brown, which is more of a chocolate colour than black. I tried Halo in my waterline, which did not show up, and Black/Brown on my lid, which showed up well, but I had to tug on my eyelid, which I really don’t like to do. I won’t use this pencil going forward, pencil liners are just not my style!
The Ulta Voluptuous Volume Mascara was great. It was buildable, super black and I loved the brush. Would I repurchase it? No. But I will finish the tube.
The gift bag came with two lip options. The Ulta Weightless Lipstick in Mauve Me, and the Ulta Matte Lip Cream in Allusive. The Lipstick is a nice colour (rose-y pink) and moisturizing, but it doesn’t last long and bleeds onto your skin. The Lip Cream is in a shade that I typically would not wear (dark purple), but I decided to wear it today to experiment. It went on a bit patchy, so you really need to precisely draw it on, I would even recommend a lip liner, but I didn’t have one to match. The Lip Cream was really comfortable to wear, not drying, and was decent colour pay off, but it did not last long once I had a few bites of food. I would recommend it as something cheap to purchase for a pop of colour on your lips if you’re not going to be eating or drinking.
All in all, it was fun to try some new products, especially since we don’t have Ulta in Canada. But we are really lucky to have Sephora and Shoppers Drug Mart, therefore aren’t missing out on much. The products in the gift bag were all fun to try, and I’m happy to add them to my collection, but I wouldn’t rave about or recommend purchasing them. The Ulta brand of makeup is their “no name” brand, and it comes with a no name price tag, and, in my opinion, no name quality. My favourite pieces were the two eyeshadow brushes and the mascara. You can’t go wrong with a few new brushes, and mascara really is a no brainer.
I hope you enjoyed reading this mini review of the Ulta Beauty Collection 14-pc Gift Bag. Do you have any favourite Ulta brand products? What should I try next time I’m in the states?
I’m just winging it. My life, my eyeliner, everything!