Monday, June 18, 2018

Beauty bargains: Look like a million bucks, pay much less

Eight-hundred dollars for an ounce of moisturizer. Twelve-hundred for a facial. There is no shortage of beauty products and services one can buy with an unlimited beauty budget. (Still flush with cash? How about a rose petal and Evian bath with a price tag of $5,000?) But if it's beauty steals you are after, rather than splurges, I've rounded up some of the best bargains on the market.

Eye spy an online deal

Lorac Cosmetics is a high-end collection known as the "Red Carpet Authority," thanks largely to founder Carol Shaw's reputation as the makeup artists to an expansive list of A-list celebs. The Lorac brand promises to deliver red-carpet-worthy results and, thanks to some online digging, I found Lorac products at a fraction of the normal price. Just log on to and click on the "VIP Sale" link where an ever-changing array of Lorac's products is offered at a deep discount; right now Lorac's "Long Lasting Eye Shadow," normally $19, is just $6 in a variety of hues.

Gifts with purchase galore

Sure, you can pick up a great lipstick at any local drugstore for less than $10. But if your lips aspire to wearing something more highbrow, gifts with purchase could be the path to justifying spending $26 for Estée Lauder's "Pink Riot" or $30 for Lancôme's "Red Chiffon." And while I regularly post roundups of GWPs on my blog, through Aug. 6, Nordstrom's anniversary sale offers dozens of beauty GWPs, available while supplies last in store and online at (Reminder: offers free shipping and returns on most items, every day.) So, for example, with any $45 Estée Lauder purchase you'll get a GWP valued at over $155 replete with a full-sized lipstick, a faux snake-skin clutch, eye shadow, mascara, lacquer and more.

Nail summer's best manis and save

Julep (photo above right) is a collection of toxin-free nail colors that I first discovered years ago as a boutique lacquer collection based out of an individual nail salon in Washington. The line has grown, as have the brick and mortar salon locations, with the addition of Julep Maven, a polish subscription club of sorts. Monthly Maven boxes include two new lacquer colors and other beauty samples. A recent box included "Zora," a frosted pink pearl lacquer, "Myrtle," a red crème lacquer and three full-sized lipsticks, all for $19.99. Plus, special offers are easily found online, such as a recently tried and (successfully) tested code "FREEBOX," which makes a first Maven subscription box free (sans $3.99 shipping). There are also a bevy of polish shades at that are on sale for just $4.99, a deep discount from the normal price of $14 a bottle.

And while a $5,000 bath may not be in your future, you've saved enough to buy yourself the biggest bottle of Evian on the market.

— Carolyn Brundage is the founder of, a guide to the best in local beauty. Need beauty advice? Tweet up with Carolyn via @tampabaypretty.

He loves his Dad Shoes ... in all their lame, comfortable glory

He loves his Dad Shoes ... in all their lame, comfortable glory

Think of your father, and the first pair of shoes that come to mind. Grass-stained golf cleats. Crusty old mudders on the deck. Fraying, decaying Birkenstocks. Burgundy leather loafers, the slip-on kind, softened and flattened by the weight of so ma...
Published: 06/13/18