However, this super awesome birthday perk from Sephora definitely softens the blow! Two mini NARS lip pencils for free? Oh heck yeah!
The two shades you get if you're a Beauty Insider or Very Important Beauty Insider (VIB) are Cruella, which has a velvet matte finish, and Rikugien, which is a satin finish. Needless to say, both are gorgeous and will suit a wide variety of skintones. If you're lucky enough to be a VIBRouge, they throw in a mini eyeliner as well, but I'm not all that broken up about it since I tend to stay away from intense black liners.
Please note how awesome the SoCal sun is for swatch pictures.
Even those these things are touted as "minis", they're still pretty sizable! The Satin Lip Pencils are 0.07 oz for a full size and my "mini" Rikugien is 0.05. Not too shabby! The Velvet Mattes have more product than the Satins at 0.086 oz, and the one I got is 0.06. Well over half the product in each for absolutely zero dollars? Very nice!
I've gotta say that the Birthday Perks have been getting better and better each year! When I first started getting into makeup the perk that year was a little mini bottle of a Philosophy birthday cake scented shower gel, which is nice, but not nearly as nice as two lip products from a pricey makeup line! Hooray for NARS, and hats off to you, Sephora! Thank you for the lovely birthday present.
P.S. I'll be doing individual reviews of the shades as soon as I'm done wear testing them since both are available for purchase.