US Drugstore Haul – and an engagement!

I’ve just come back from beautiful New York City! I’m still recovering from the heat, the noise, the food, the drink, and the vibrancy of one of the most wonderful places I’ve ever been to. It was my third visit to NYC but it never gets old for me.

 The view of Manhattan from Brooklyn


Central Park
Yankee Stadium – where I had the most amazing garlic fries with extra cheese!

We did a huge amount of walking, cycling, and of course I did some shopping! I was extremely excited about going to Sephora, as we don’t have these in the UK. I was just as excited about US drugstores! There seems to be a Duane Reade on every corner in New York, not to mention CVS, filled with many brands we don’t get here. I was in my element! And I seem to have bought rather a lot….


Lots of these items are relatively inexpensive from the drugstore, and things that I’ve wanted for a long time. I watch endless YouTube videos on US drugstore hauls, and had made a long list before I went. I didn’t find some things I want (NYX for example) but couldn’t be happier with what I have.

From the drugstore I got the Queen Helene Mint Julep Masque (an old favourite of mine), Milani Baked Blush in Luminoso and Rose D’Oro, TheBalm’s Betty Lou Manizer, L’Oreal lipstick in Fairest Nude, L’Oreal Infallible Pro-Spray & Set Makeup Extender Setting Spray, Wet N Wild eyeshadow trio in Walking On Eggshells, L’Oreal Infallible 24 Hour Eye Shadow in Amber Rush (so beautiful), Wet N Wild Reserve Your Cabana, Maybelline Color Tattoo in Bad To The Bronze, and an extra strength benzoyl peroxide cream from Clean & Clear (boo to adult acne…..but this stuff is great so far!). I also bought the Maybelline Master Prime in Blur + Smooth. I’m yet to try this out but have high hopes.

I spent the most wonderful hour in Sephora on 5th Avenue. Sigh….it was so much fun! I picked up the Boscia Luminizing Black Mask, Boscia Makeup Breakup Cleansing Oil, Formula X Nail Polish in Majestic (deep navy – it’s gorgeous), Tarte Best In Faux lash fibres, Beauty Blender BlenderCleanser (I’ve used this before and love it), Prada Candy rollerball, Kat Von D tattoo Liner in Mad Max Brown, MUFE HD Powder mini, Perricone MD No Foundation Foundation Serum and No Lipstick Lipstick (love them both), Sephora nail polish remover, brush cleanser and a Living Proof Texturizing Spray as one of my VIB rewards.

Sephora also do awesome little kits full of mini sizes, so as I am quite tanned at the moment I picked up the Sephora Favorites Bronze Bares All kit. It contained the Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed in Opal that I had on my list anyway, plus all the following: Bite Beauty High Pigment Pencil in Madeira, Formula X Nail Color in Evocative (on my nails now), Nars Cosmetics Lip Gloss in Supervixen, Sephora Collection Contour Eye Pencil 12 Hour Wear in #14 (wow this stuff lasts!), Tarte The Sculptor Contouring Face Slenderizer in Park Ave Princess, Too Faced Cosmetics Chocolate Soleil Bronzer and the Urban Decay Split Pan Eyeshadow in Half Baked/Twice Baked. All in all this is an awesome little kit and I can’t wait to try everything out.

The other bits and bobs I got were this beautiful necklace from Zara (available both in the UK and in the US – I received so many compliments on this), these awesome sunglasses from Fossil, MAC Lingering Brow Pencil, an Olivia + Joy bag from Century 21 (reduced from $82 to $32), Bumble & Bumble Hairdresser’s Invisible Oil Primer, and my much coveted Victoria Beckham for Nails Inc polishes. These were a total indulgence but that was my special treat for months of saving and not spending!

Overall I did really well and managed to stick within my budget for the most part. I knew I wanted to spend so had planned and saved for a while.

There was one final surprise in store for me in New York – I got engaged!

We had spoken about it before and I knew I did not want an expensive ring. For me, it is more important that we buy a bigger house so I would rather our money goes towards that for the time being. We had been into Henri Bendel on 5th earlier that day and I’d tried a few things on. While I was in Sephora my lovely other half left me and crept back to the store to pick up a ring I had been lusting after. He then proposed to me on the top of the Empire State Building, during a relatively quiet moment at 1am! It was lovely, and I am over the moon. The ring suits me perfectly and we are so happy 🙂

Now to plan a wedding worthy of a bargain hunter! We’ve decided to tie the knot in a couple of years, once we (hopefully) have moved. Any tips for an inexpensive wedding? 🙂

ETS: I’ve since tried out the wedding planning services of Find out how to make wedding planning easier in this post.

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  1. June 23, 2015 / 6:13 pm

    Huge congratulations! Your ring is beautiful! You will find lots of wedding forums where you can get tips on haggling to get great bargains for your wedding. The planning is so exciting! Love your beauty purchases too! xx


    • June 24, 2015 / 3:59 pm

      Thank you! Great idea to start looking at wedding forums – I hadn't considered that haggling would be an option so this is a fab tip, thanks 🙂 xx

  2. Ashleigh Allan
    October 5, 2017 / 7:21 am

    I would love to go to new York

    • November 7, 2017 / 3:35 pm

      Thank you! It’s worth it at least once in a lifetime, such a unique place.

  3. Amy Fidler
    November 19, 2017 / 12:04 pm

    What a great place to be proposed to xx congrats xx

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