I wax poetic about these products in greater detail in my Sephora Hair, Body, and Fragrance Guide on YouTube. While you're there, I'd love for you to subscribe!
Lastly, I just want to remind you that while there is a lot of hype around the Sephora sale, sales will be ongoing throughout the holiday season and beyond. Beauty products are never worth going into debt. I hope I can help guide thoughtful and worthwhile purchases.
Sephora Sale Info
Rouge 20% off, Nov. 5-15
VIB 15% off, Nov. 9-15
Insider 10% off, Nov. 11-15
Table of Contents
Hair Wash Products
Hair Leave-In Products and Treatments
Body Wash + Bath
Body Creams + Lotions + Treatments
Hair Wash Products
Pureology Hydrate Shampoo and Conditioner — A longtime favorite wash duo, the Hydrate line gives me a thorough, delicious cleanse without stripping the hair. It leaves me with noticeably softer, shinier hair with regular use. They also remind me of a fancy salon. The shampoo smells of lavender, bergamot, and patchouli. It creates a rich lather, even though it’s sulfate-free. The conditioner has a soothing effect, thanks to the addition of menthol and green notes. It’s super moisturizing and detangling.
Briogeo Scalp Revival Charcoal + Coconut Oil Micro-Exfoliating Scalp Scrub Shampoo — The Scalp Revival line is aimed at people with oily, itchy, or irritated scalps. This is a very unique product, a fine scrub in a creamy shampoo base. It takes a bit of time to work into the scalp; it won’t foam up or dissolve right away. It’s a product I use as a treatment when I have dry shampoo buildup or itchy scalp. The peppermint, spearmint, and tea tree oil feel cooling on the scalp and it gives me a really nice cleanse. I can go longer between washes when I use this.
Briogeo Don’t Despair Repair Deep Conditioning Hair Mask — A hair mask that would work for all hair types. I love the smell of this mask, a slightly creamy floral. This is a mask that adds shine, moisture, and silkiness, especially for color-treated or damaged hair. It’s also a slightly lighter hair mask that doesn’t leave my hair too heavy or weighed down, but still adds moisture. I’ve heard people with all hair types share positive reviews of this.
Christophe Robin Purifying Scalp Scrub — This is the most hardcore scalp scrub of the bunch, the kind of heavy duty clarifying cleanser that also helps with itchy, flaky scalps. It’s a rather rough texture, like rock salt bound together with a gel base. This is something you want to take your time with as it works best once the salt starts to dissolve and form a lather on the scalp. This is what I turn to when I need a true clarifying cleanse for product buildup. Avoid use right after color treating.
Amika Soulfood Hair Mask — The best detangling hair mask in my arsenal, I always keep a jumbo tub of this around. It’s creamy, slippy, and makes brushing out my long hair a breeze.
Amika The Kure Hair Mask — The hair mask I use for repair and moisture. The Kure isn’t as detangling as Soulfood, but it helps restore softness and moisture to my hair.
Amika Bust Your Brass Shampoo and Conditioner — A purple shampoo and conditioner duo that creates an excellent lather and moisturizes the hair, without stripping it. It’s not as hardcore as a toning product like Fanola, but it keeps brassiness at bay without dehydrating my hair. There’s also a Bust Your Brass Mask!
Playa Healing Hair Masque — A truly unique product, this is the only hair mask that’s meant to be used from scalp to ends. It helps moisturize and soothe the scalp and also detangles and hydrates the hair. I love the scent of this: warm sandalwood and amber, kind of an elevated beachy scent.
Treatments and Leave-In Products
Pureology Color Fanatic Spray — A detangler, a color protector, a heat protectant, the list goes on. This is what I use on wet hair right out of the shower before I brush through. Personally I love this especially for its hair-softening, detangling, and hydrating properties.
Gisou Leave-In Conditioner — For a more indulgent leave-in conditioner experience, this softens and detangles the hair. But mostly, I love this for its honey-infused scent that Gisou is known for.
Kerastasse Discipline Anti Frizz Smoothing Spray — People with fine hair and people who live in humid climates will love this. This is the finest leave-in product of the bunch, both in its light mist and its lightweight formula. It adds shine and overall flexibility and control without adding any weight to the hair.
Amika The Wizard Detangling Primer — This is the most emollient leave-in conditioner of the bunch, with a high concentration of oils (sea buckthorn is a star ingredient in Amika’s products). The emollience helps detangle the hair very quickly and provides a lot of slip and shine. This can be a bit heavy when over-applied, so use a lighter hand with this formula.
Gisou Propolis Infused Heat Protecting Spray — Lightweight, effective, with a light smell of honey. Despite the fact that I consistently use leave-in conditioners, I like to have a dedicated heat protecting product. I love that this can be used liberally without weighing down the hair.
Gisou Honey Infused Hair Oil — I'm a sucker for honey-infused anything, so naturally I love this. It’s a slippy, moisturizing, hydrating hair oil, the only hair oil I’ve used pretty much all year. I use this on wet or dry hair, just on the ends, to add some shine and smoothness. It does not ever weigh the hair down. It is a high price point, but I’ve had this 3.4 oz. bottle for over a year and with regular use, I’m only halfway through it.
Living Proof Advanced Dry Shampoo — I didn’t think Living Proof could make my favorite Perfect Hair Day Dry Shampoo any better, but then they released this. As an oily-scalp gal, I consider myself something of a dry shampoo expert. Living Proof dry shampoos are perfect in that they make your hair both look and feel clean. They come out as a white spray but dissolve quickly into the hair without leaving any white cast, grittiness, or white cast. I can use these multiple days I a row without a problem.
IGK First Class Dry Shampoo — Hear me out. This is a desperate times dry shampoo. For those days when you can't possibly be bothered to wash your hair, but you know you need something hardcore. It is a dry shampoo that will make your hair look like first or second day hair: clean,full, voluminous. But, the tradeoff is that I absolutely need to wash my hair after I use this for a day, otherwise I feel the product in my hair and it can be tough to brush through.
Hair Tools & Accessories
Amika Hair Blow Dryer Brush (linking the set here that is the same price as the brush alone!) — If you want a bouncy, voluminous blowout look but struggle with a traditional blow dryer and round brush, this is for you. It’s a lightweight, round barrel blow dryer brush that has 3 settings: cool, low, and high. It’s lightweight and the barrel is oval-shaped, which help maintain tension as you are roll out the hair from root to ends. I prefer to air dry my hair about halfway before styling with the Hair Blow Dryer Brush.
The Blow Dryer Buffet set is the same cost as the Blow Dryer Brush and comes with a full size of The Wizard and Perk Up Dry Shampoo.
Amika Thermal Straightening Brush — This is the straightener for people who want straight hair but don’t want to lose volume. It’s a traditional brush shape with a heated plate at the base that allows you to straighten the hair as you brush you hair.
T3 Lucea ID Flat Iron — This is a very high tech straightener, a great option if you’re looking to invest in a high quality straightener. It has a smart-touch interface with nine settings that allow you to customize the heat settings depending on your hair type, coarseness, and color treatment history. It basically guarantees you won’t overheat or over damage your hair. The tool will remember these settings, or you can easily switch back to manual. There are 9 settings in total. It also heats up so quickly. As expected with a T3 tool, it delivers shiny, soft hair and an elegant experience. The Lucea also available for a lower pricepoint without the touch screen interface.
T3 Twirl Trio — A convertible curling iron with 3 interchangeable barrels: 1”, 1.25”, and 1.5”. If you’re someone who curls your hair often and wants versatile barrel sizes without the clutter of owning multiple irons, this is the one for you. I love how quickly and evenly this heats up, and the even heating across the whole barrels does create a shiny curl without damaging my hair. The interchangeable experience is elegant, no wiggling or jamming in the clip. Also available as a wand-style, the T3 Whirl Trio.
Amika High Tide Deep Waver — An easy way to create a wavy hair look.! I really enjoy the size of the waves in this tool. They’re not so small that the hair looks crimped, just large enough to give you a beauty wavy look. You can also adjust the style of the wave depending on how you use the tool. On low heat, it will give you a very loose wave. On higher heat, it will give you a more defined wavy look. It’s a larger tool in terms of width, so I’d recommend this for shoulder length hair or longer.
Aquis Hair Towel — I cannot be without my Aquis, so much so that I bring it with me when I travel. The concept is simple: it’s an air-wicking hair turban that wraps around your head and buttons so it stays securely on your head. It cuts down drying time significantly; it prevents breakage; it leads to smoother hair overall. I now own multiple: the waffle luxe, the Copper, and I love all of them.
Body Wash & Bath Products
Nécessaire Body Wash — Full disclosure: I love everything Necessaire. They deliver on brand experience as well as performance. To me, they’re more of a treat than an everyday use sort of product, but they really hit the mark when you’re in the mood for an indulgence. They offer three fragrances, Eucalyptus, Bergamot, and Sandalwood, and also Fragrance Free options in their bath products. Bergamot and Sandalwood are both sexy, unisex, musky types of scents. Eucalyptus is my current favorite, a sharp and fresh true Eucalyptus. I also love the Fragrance-Free options. The body wash creates a nice foam, but is pH balanced to keep the skin hydrated.
Nécessaire Body Exfoliator — A gentle body exfoliator that will last you forever, because a little really goes a long way. It includes both physical and chemical exfoliators, which I appreciate for keeping my legs and feet soft and supple. It’s also the perfect texture. Unlike salt or sugar scrubs that can just dissolve on contact with water, the bamboo charcoal exfoliators stick around for a while. You can actually see the charcoal dissolving bit by bit, but it sticks to your skin and has time to work. In other words, it won’t slip off your body before you rinse it off.
L’Occitane Cleansing and Softening Shower Oil with Almond Oil — A cleansing oil for the body in the signature Almond scent. The first body oil cleanser that I ever fell in love with, this is a little shower treat. It emulsifies on the skin and rinses clean, but the shower oil moisturizes and hydrates the body even after it rinses away. If you hate moisturizing your body but you want to hydrate your skin, this might be a nice option in a warm, creamy, comforting scent.
Body Treatments, Lotions, Creams
Nécessaire Body Serum — Absolutely stunning, and an excellent body moisturizer for people who don’t like lotion textures. This is a super spreadable serum texture that reminds me of a serum/gel cream hybrid. It deeply hydrates the skin and sinks in immediately. Also a great value in terms of price per ounce. I know many people use this for the face too because it’s a fragrance-free hydrating serum. It would really last forever that way.
Nécessaire Body Oil — A yummy, nourishing blend of sweet almond, hazelnut, macadamia oils, among others. This is lightweight and sinks in very quickly. I love it even more when mixed into the Body Serum, which makes it more spreadable overall.
Dr. Jart Ceramidin Body Lotion — A very lightweight yet ceramide-rich body lotion that will moisturize without any heaviness. It’s almost like a gel cream in that it spreads and sinks in very quickly.
Kiehl’s Creme de Corps — A fragrance-free moisturizer that is rich and creamy, yet totally non-greasy. It doesn’t leave any sort of tackiness or residue behind. For me, it’s a higher-end recommendation for an everyday body lotion. Everything about it makes it a crowd-pleaser.
Josie Maran Whipped Argan Pro-Retinol Body Butter — This is just delicious. It’s a rich, creamy, pink cream: fragrance-free, uber nourishing but not claggy, the way other body butters can be. A beautiful indulgence, enriched with Josie Maran’s signature argan oil, among other plant oils and extracts. My one issue with this product is with its marketing. It contains pink algae extract that they purport is a retinol alternative, but it has neither the science nor the proven effects of retinol. Still, this is rich and moisturizing and just lovely to use.
Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Body Peel — If you are managing ingrown hairs, keratosis Polaris, dryness, body breakouts, or dryness, this is for you. Similar to the Alpha Beta Peels, these are individual pre-soaked towelettes that exfoliate the skin with a mix of glycolic, lactic, and salicylic acids. Super effective.
Supergoop Glow Oil Body Sunscreen SPF 50 PA++++ — My one body SPF favorite at Sephora (simply because I don’t use usually use SPFs at Sephora price points on the body), the Supergoop Glow Oil is just lovely. A vacation pool day or beach day SPF. This is an all-chemical SPF housed in a dry oil and packaged in a spray bottle. Despite being an oil, it sinks in very quickly and creates a sexy, shiny effect on the limbs. But, it doesn’t stain clothes or bathing suits. My favorite way to reapply SPF when I want to feel sexy.
Nécessaire Hand Cream — A fragrance-free, lightweight hand cream that is enriched with peptides. This is my current desk-side hand cream: it moisturizes but sinks in quickly so I can get right back to work on my keyboard without worrying about greasiness or residue.
L’Occitane Hand Cream — A longtime purse hand cream for me. Slightly richer than the Necessaire hand cream, but still absorbs quickly without residual stickiness. I love the Shea Butter version, which is the lightest scent. I also love the Almond/Amande scent. They make a ton of gift sets that make great holiday gifts and hostess gifts.
Personally, I’m eyeing the Fenty Skin Hand Mask, largely because it’s called a hand mask, but also because it’s received a lot of positive reviews.
Tan Luxe The Body Illuminating Self-Tan Drops — These are self-tanning drops that are adjustable in color depending on how much you use. You add 2-6 drops to your regular body moisturizer to apply to the body. The more drops you use, the deeper the tan. This doesn’t have a color guide, but it always gives me an even and very gradual tan. There are two shades options: light/medium and medium/dark. The most fool-proof and the most gradual.
Tan Luxe The Gradual Illuminating Gradual Tan Lotion — For a slightly deeper tan than the drops, this is a straightforward tanning lotion. It’s a lighter, runnier lotion consistency that is very hydrating and spreadable. It’s a white lotion that doesn’t contain a guide color, so you will want to take care around the usual places: hands, feet, elbows, and knees.
Atelier Cologne Clementine California — What I would consider one of my signature scents, Clementine California is a surprisingly complex citrus fragrance. The clementine note is definitely primary, but is balanced by a subtle muskiness that comes from the vetiver and sandalwood. The woodsy notes balance this perfectly, so this is not a sweet fragrance.. It’s not the longest-lasting perfume, but I really don’t mind and I actually love how light this is on the skin. Atelier Cologne also do beautiful gift sets. Clementine California comes as a hand cream, a candle, and even an advent calendar!
Atelier Cologne Love Osmanthus — A slightly juicier, sweeter, more floral citrus, Love Osmanthus is a very bright, happy scent. It has a peachy note with a creaminess, balanced by the brightness of lemon.
Ellis Brooklyn Bee — If you like something sweet, Bee is a honey-based perfume. I generally avoid sweet scents, but something about this warm, rich, syrupy honey perfume gets me. It’s rounded out with notes of dark rum and vanilla bean. It opens as a honey-forward fragrance, but settles into a creamy skin-like smoothness.
Maison Louis Marie No. 04 Bois de Balincourt Perfume Oil — My other signature scent. Warm, woodsy, sexy, amber, sandalwood - all things I love. People call this a dupe for Le Labo’s Santal 33, “without the pickle scent” (a comment I hear frequently). Best thing is, it’s much more affordable than that at $57 for .5 oz (and just over $45 with the sale!). I love the perfume oil format; it transforms over time and warms up with your body temperature, wearing close to the skin. This No. 04 Bois de Balincourt Gift Set with a full size perfume oil, perfume, and votive candle is fantastic value and always sells out very quickly.
Maison Louis Marie No. 03 L’etang Noir Perfume Oil — This is a warm spicy vanilla musk. It’s similar to Tom Ford’s Tobacco Vanilla, but slightly spicier I think and heavier on the spice notes. A perfect holiday scent.
Nest Perfume Oil in Seville Orange — Nest released perfume oils earlier this year, and of course I had to have it in Seville Orange. Nest is so good at taking straightforward fragrances and making them rich, complex, and slightly unexpected. This reminds me of summer days, zesty grapefruit, neroli blossoms.
Nest Perfume Oil in Madagascar Vanilla — A creamy, coconut-y, slightly floral vanilla fragrance. This is on the lighter end of vanilla fragrances, lifted by the vanilla orchid notes. I’m wearing this a lot more in cooler weather.
Tom Ford Tobacco Vanille — Frequently duped but never truly duplicated, Tobacco Vanille is stunning. A blend of creamy tonic vanilla bean with cocoa, woods, dry fruit, and spices. I love the complexity of the tobacco note in here. It’s smoky without smelling like smoke. Definitely a sexy, dark fragrance that settles into the skin and becomes creamier over time.
Nest Holiday (shown right)— My all-time favorite holiday/winter candle. I love this so much that I could burn it all year. In the middle of July I think about how I can’t wait to burn this candle. It’s definitely pine-forward, but balanced by pomegranate, cloves, mandarin, amber. Everything that makes me happy about the holiday season.
Nest Birchwood Pine — The pine candle. This is a much more green, wood-forward scent than Holiday, with notes of white pine, birchwood, and amber. A little earthier, true woods scent.
Nest Blue Cypress & Snow — A cozy, creamy, yummy scent. Cypress meets creamy smoked vanilla, it somehow is woodsy yet round, warm, and inviting all at the same time.
Nest Pumpkin Chai — Let me begin this section by saying that I love Nest candles. This is where the brand really shines. They burn evenly with long burn times. Pumpkin Chai is a a classic fall fragrance made complex by the addition of spicy Masala chai and cinnamon. The fall fragrance.
Nest Autumn Plum — This is a fall fragrance for someone who doesn’t like pumpkin. Released earlier this year, this is such an interesting, almost mysterious scent, slightly unisex. A deep plum note balanced by notes of autumn leaves and cinnamon-y spices. I’m currently only seeing this as a diffuser on the Sephora website.
Overose Valkyria — This is an indulgence made IG-famous. A treat. A beautiful gift. With notes of fig leaves, vineyard peaches, coco milk, and cedar wood, Valkyria is just perfection. Woodsy, creamy, but still fruity. So complex, and unlike any other candle I’ve ever owned. In either pink or holographic, these vessels make stunning decor.
Otherland Rattan — Otherland candles are a true experience, from unboxing to burning. Each candle comes packaged in a beautiful box that unfolds to reveal beautiful artwork, the candle, and an accompanying printed matchbox for $36.
I think Otherland candles make excellent gifts for this reason. Rattan is in the permanent Otherland collection, a true sandalwood with warm amber and musk.
Personally I plan to grab Otherland Fallen Fir, because you know me — I just can’t resist a piney balsam candle.