Friday was all about the free – free gifts that is! With only two purchases I managed to amass quite the haul.
I am a complete sucker for free gifts in shops when you spend a certain amount. It’s how I’ve amassed quite the L’Occitane collection in only a few months – though it isn’t always a good thing and often means I spend more than originally intended.
I’ve stayed away from The Body Shop for the past year, some what consciously. I have quite the collection of their products with everything from the vitamin C or E range, shower gels, tea tree products and much more. I used to own one of every shower gel, with body butters to match, but at one point I got rather frustrated with the amount I owned – I barely ever used the body butters and was disappointed in myself at how much I had spent in there!
So Friday was myfirst visit in a while to The Body Shop, which I went to solely because they had emailed me about the offer of a free Vitamin E set with a purchase £25 or more, and they also had a bit of a sale going on. I bought three things in store; Dead Sea Salt Scrub from the Spa of the World range, Fuji Green Tea Bath Tea and a cute little strainer to accompany it.
I have used their Spa of the World products before, owning a couple of the massage oils which I am quite fond of, and their Egyptian Milk and Honey Bath so hopefully the scrub will be just as good, especially in the run up to summer. It’s a pretty big pot so will hopefully last a good while, it cost £20 which put me most of the way to reaching the £25 threshold for the free gift.
The Bath Tea I bought as a little treat (much like everything else) for myself. I struggle to find things for the bath that don’t irritate my sensitive skin, so I’m going to give this a try, it smells pretty nice too, rather uplifting. I like the tea infuser, I don’t know if you’re meant to fill the whole thing as it is pretty big, but I can’t wait to try the two in conjunction.
The free gift was a Vitamin E set, said to be worth over £30, it includes a miniature cream cleanser, overnight serum-in-oil and moisture cream, only the latter of which I have not used. It’s quite a cute set in a nice box, I already have a cream cleanser on the go, so I might keep the set in the wardrobe and see if I need it for a birthday gift before I use it for myself.
In total I spent £37 at The Body Shop, I did cheekily try and use the O2 Priority discount of £10, but the cashier said it wasn’t permitted – at least I tried!
The second free gift I had my sights set on was a Lancôme set, exclusive to House of Frazer. My usual motto is ‘if it can be bought at Boots, it will be bought at Boots’ but on this occasion I made an exception.
I haven’t used much of Lancôme before, I do have their Hypnose waterproof mascara, as well as the limited edition gold top coat mascara from Christmas, the former of which has been nothing shy of perfect. I have always been intrigued to try more of their products – I have the Miracle Cushion Foundation from the Glamour Beauty Power list win, but haven’t started it yet.
To qualify for the free gift you had to buy two items, after a good chat with the assistant about my skin type and needs I chose the Softening Hydrating Toner and Gentle Softening and Cleansing Fluid. She also told me how to incorporate them into my routine, which being the novice that I am is always something that I look for.
The free gift is quite the coo, it includes a full size Bi-Facil, which will be ideal for when my current one runs out. There are four miniature beauty products – Lip Lover, Le Crayon Khol, Hypnose Mascara and Advanced Genifique – perfect to try out more of the range. You get the option of skincare being Absolue and Absolue Nuit or Hydra Zen and Hydra Zen Nuit cream samples. I went for the Hydra Zen. It also includes a sample size La Vie Est Belle perfume which is too cute in a tiny bottle!
I also purchased a second Juicy Shaker, my first having come from Selfridges during my visit to London. This time opting for the shade Boom-Meringue which is a fairly neutral and pale choice, it actually taste likes meringues – I can’t get enough of these and promise to post a review soon. That third item entitled me to an extra gift, initially I thought it was a choice from two items but as it turned out no choice – I got them both! Lancôme Hydrating Gel Mask and Smoothing Exfoliating Cream for me!
The Lancôme assistant was ever so attentive, and patient whilst I made my decision, we had a good natter. She also said that if I had any trouble, with any of the products because of my eczema, I was to bring them and my receipt straight back and she will help me out! I truly believe sometimes that the sentiment of you get what you pay for is so true with some of the luxury brands, especially when it comes to the after sales care. Thankfully she didn’t do any of the hard sell, which is such a relief.
I’m not a confident shopper when it comes to makeup or beauty products so I can be quite easily talked into buying more than I intend, as I don’t have the confidence to say no. I did once spend £94 on products at a counter in Boots a few years ago, none of which I was sure I wanted, or needed but the assistant basically looked at me after a consultation and asked which ones I intended to buy, to her it probably meant nothing but to me it was very intimidating. Since then I have of hurried through the concessions counters in Boots making my way to the aisles where I feel safer.
My Lancôme splurge set me back £64.50 with the toner and cleansing fluid costing £23 and £23.50 respectively and the Juicy Shaker being £18. My Hydra Zen edition of the free gift is worth £84~, with the alternative Absolue moisturiser edition being worth the £124 stated, and then the other two products on top as well.
I can’t wait to get started trying all of my new products especially the Fuji Green tea from the Body Shop with the cute strainer, as well as all of the Lancôme miniatures – I will try and keep you updated on my progress and thoughts.
The Body Shop offer ended on the 18th of March however the Lancôme offer runs until the 27th of March so if you’re interested you’ve only got a few days to get yourself to House of Fraser.
What are your Body Shop and Lancôme favourites, or is there a type of offer you simple cannot resist when shopping (like me), let me know in the comments.