- Accessibility: It's in the middle of surrounded-by-farmland nowhere.
- Prices: Some things were amazingly discounted. Others, not so much. Also, $/unit was a little wonky and I'll get into that in the haircare section.
- Inventory: They don't have everything. They have a bunch of past collections, so this would be the chance to pick up limited edition item you may have missed out on. There are also a ton of pro products which are hard to come by if you don't live near a pro store. They have some normal store items, but not too many. Skincare was curiously absent. There was some, but unless you're seriously into Origins or the Clinique Poreless line, there wasn't much. There were also lots of DKNY, Tommy Hilfiger and Estee Lauder fragrances.
- Insane shopper syndrome: When you first get in, you'll feel this irrepressible urge to charge tables and purchase. Try not to. Go in with a plan/idea of what you want.
- How it works: There are tables with a sample of each product that they carry and a number that identifies it. You write down the numbers of things that you want and bring them to the stock people. Kind of like a 1930s grocery store. At each table they put your purchases into a bag and seal it for you -- you can't purchase anything that's not been bagged. If you want to return one of the items ib your bag, you need to go to the returns table and have them repackage everything, but that doesn't take long. It's easiest to get everything you might want and take a few minutes at the end to prune the excess and return it all at once.
- Was it worth it? Yes.
- Colours: Not all shades are available in foundations/powders/concealers. I also recommend that you get yourself matched before you go to the sale.
I think the way to do this is to identify what you're missing from your collection, or what you've been lemming for a really long time. For example, I know that I'm severely lacking in MAC brushes, and I figured this would be a great opportunity to get some. I also wanted to pick up some Lustre drops, try Bobbi Brown concealer, and possibly pick up a Skinfinish Natural, because I've never tried one before.
Very few things on my extensive list were actually available, but it helped me kind of stay within the category. Of course I still strayed from the list, but I can only imagine what I would have done with less mental preparation. Another thing about having a list of things you want is that you can scan the tables for those items and get them first. This also makes the shopping process go a lot faster -- I got through all three rooms in 45 minutes. Tod took a little longer and that's when I found myself finding picking up things I didn't necessarily want/need.
Brushes: I was trying to photograph these all in one shot, but they wouldn't lie flat properly so I decided to show them individually.
MAC Gold Pro Pigment ($12), MAC Bare Study Paint Pot ($12)
Bobbi Brown Corrector in Light Peach ($9), Bobbi Brown Creamy Concealer in Warm Beige ($9)
Clinique Naturally Glossy Mascara in Black ($12)
Clinique High Impact Mascara in Black ($12)
Lumecin Overnight Brightening Gluco-Protein Treatment ($18)
Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray ($10)
Bumble and Bumble Creme de Coco Masque ($20)
Note: I also got the Creme de Coco shampoo (1L) and conditioner in four 2oz travel bottles.
Here's the thing -- they were selling 8 oz bottles of conditioner for $18 and 2 oz bottles for $4 each.
Wasteful, but more economical for me ;-)
I would have done this in one photo, but they wouldn't lay flat. Naughty brushes.
I can't remember how much each brush cost, but they ranged from $10 - $20. This giant buffer below was $30 though. They also had some limited 187s that were $50, but I'd rather a normal-looking one if I have to pay the retail price anyway.