Sample Me Crazy: Why Beauty Products Are Now Easier For You To Love

Mikela Warman
Mikela has been working in the fashion industry since 2012 with the likes of Marie Claire, Giorgio Armani, WWD and VERANDA Magazine. She passionately studies the industry of style and how it coalesces with various different aspects of life such as art, career and cultural influences. When she’s not daydreaming at Bergdorf’s, you can find Mikela at yoga, watching Netflix documentaries and taking long walks around Manhattan. As a founding member of the site, Mikela also currently heads the brand management of 20something.

You know when you’re strolling through Sephora, Anthropologie or CVS and you pick something up only to think, “Hmm I kinda wanna try this,” but then put it down for sake of having to eat dinner that week? Well I don’t put it down and I have eggs for dinner four nights a week.

Ever since I can remember, a gratis sample or free gift with purchase ignites in me an unmatched burning flame of pure, sweet, sweet serendipitous joy. Yes, I use all of those adjectives because I can barely describe how happy it makes me to find a new beauty or makeup product I like.

I hadn’t come to terms with this obsession until recently when I was cleaning out my “product drawer.” All girls have one. It’s like this abandoned girl cave that houses expired gift cards, buttons from a shirt you bought three years ago, those lost chapsticks, two receipts and a graveyard of half-empty sample containers.

It’s cute. Bobbi Brown, Sisley, L’occitane and Smashbox all live together in a beauty retirement home. They play bingo on Sundays and plot Mikela’s bank account death on Tuesdays.

Lucky for you (and Sephora’s VIB Rouge program), my beauty product obsession will now turn into mini reviews for y’all. I’ll let you know where I heard of the product, where to get it and why I’m in lurrrv.

Here in part one, I’ll give a review of half of the below.

Mikela Beauty review 1

Yes, it was difficult to show each label and yes, I had to take 50 pics to get this somewhat right.


R+Co Death Valley Dry Shampoo – $29

I first heard of R+Co when I was getting my hair done at IGK salon. The salon uses Oribe products (also amazing) and R+Co is a subset of that brand. Aside from the wicked cool packaging, this dry shampoo smells amazing, gives your hair volume and texture, and does its dry shampoo-y job. Bed head no more.


Got mine at Soon Beauty Lab in Flatiron, NYC


EO French Lavender Botanical Body Oil – $14.99

Not sure why I was reading about Zac Efron’s new girlfriend Sami Miro, but she had some really great beauty tips. Sami swore by this lavender oil for her whole body and face to leave it feeling silky smooth. In the winter, I tend to gravitate towards oil as opposed to lotion. It really hydrates and doesn’t leave a sticky residue. Just be careful when applying — spilled oil is not easy to clean up.

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Got mine on Amazon


Aveeno Positively Smooth Shave Gel – $4.20

Found this affordable bad boy at SoulCycle. It provided a clean, close shave formulated with natural soy and rich emollients to immediately help soften my skin and hair. Extremely gentle and ideal for sensitive skin.


Got mine at CVS


R+Co One Prep Spray – $20

Think of this as a primer or base coat for your hair. Right after the shower, before you apply any product, towel-dry and spray generously with ONE to revitalize dead ends and ratchet tangles. Smells amazing, looks kick ass — win win.

Got mine at Soon Beauty Lab in Flatiron, NYC


Sachajuan Leave in Conditioner – $31

Mmm I love this brand. The light, oil-free leave in conditioner not only smells like heaven, but leaves your hair shiny and full while keeping your scalp healthy. Right after the shower (after applying your ONE spray) spritz this on to towel-dried hair and don’t rinse out!


Got mine on Net-a-Porter


Skin Laundry Restoring Night Serum – $50

So I understand this one is a bit pricier. I got this at the Marie Claire beauty sale for $5! Lucky me. Regardless, this product infuses the skin with antioxidants, vitamins and peptides to help reduce the first signs of aging. If you’re thinking “I’m only 25 I don’t need that,” you’re wrong. Start preventing wrinkles and age spots now.


Got mine at the Marie Claire Beauty Sale


Shoot me a line at [email protected] if you have any specific questions, and stay tuned for part two. Happy shopping!