Friday, 30 September 2011

Another Hit-and-Run!

7.30am (GMT+8; EST 7.30pm).

So here I am again, sitting at my table prepping myself for the Haunt Beguiling Bath & Body online store to open its doors at 8pm EST. Apparently this store's shopping experience is very similar to Moona Lisa's, so needless to say it's gonna be another hectic half hour.

Similarly, there was a preview before the official sale but Erin was unable to set up the preview on time because of technical difficulties. So by the time the preview was on, it was in the wee mornings for me... think 4am THAT sort of time.

8.15am. Site was still under maintenance. Hmmph.
8.25am. No products despite refreshing page countless times. Best get some coffee.
8.36am. 3 products that I wanted were all gone. Sigh.

Not complaining though, it was my own ruddy fault that I stepped away. But I didn't want to sit at the com refreshing my page when the store was already late in opening its doors and didn't give any sign that it was gonna be delayed much longer. Lesson learnt. Incidentally, announcements are posted on Haunt's blog, and there isn't a Facebook page from what I know.

The inventory comprised of 3 pages, most of it were lip balms aka. Lusts and body polishes. There were some soaps which were sold out quickly, and only 1 listing of whipped butter comprising of only 3 scents. I didn't manage to get a SINGLE pot. It was gone in a matter of seconds. Erin had mentioned that the store was to remain opened until Sat midnight EST. However, I really don't see how that's gonna happen unless she restocks. Most of the items will be gone within 2-3 hours tops.

There was no availability bar listed for each item, so you have no clue whether you have any chance at all in getting your hands on this item so it's purely based on luck. Another hit-and-run session for me... frankly I'm getting a little tired of shopping experiences like these even though it's only my 2nd time. I like to be able to take my time to read the stuff and buy things that I actually want, rather than adding products into my cart because NOTHING else is available. It's like buying for the sake of buying isn't it?

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

There's always a first for everything.

There is a bath and body company out there that intrigues me greatly. This company relies solely on word-of-mouth for business; does not do any YouTube videos or discounts (not to my knowledge); nor does it sell products all year round. The TAT (turn around time) is 4-6 weeks (usually more) and her Facebook page is used mainly to show photos of past creations rather than for promoting her business with sales or discounts. Her main website crashes when she is finally opened for business due to the overwhelming number of customers dying to get their hands on her products and it has been known that your shopping cart items could be 'stolen' by others because it does not have a 'hold time' feature.

And yet despite all these...
                               her soaps sell out within 20-30 mins ever time the sale starts; other popular bath & body products like her lip butters, Potion lotions, Cream Scrub Parfait and 4-in1 suds sell out within 30-45 mins.

Which company is this? It's none other than Moona Lisa.

Folks who have tried products from this company swear allegiance to it and there is almost a 'cult-like' following to this company. I have not read a single bad review of this company before and those that I've talked to love Moona's products to pieces and say that the long wait is worth it. Check out her Face Book page and you will find it flooded with people thanking the creator for the wonderful items she has made. It is incredible just to read the comments!

Recently Moo (known more commonly by her fans) launched a Halloween collection on 18th at 9.30pm & 19th Sept at 6.30pm. For me, that translates into 12.30am and 9.30am, but luckily I suffer from insomnia so I'm usually awake at most hours.

Prior to the sale, I had spoken to a friend who told me how to shop 'correctly' when the sale hits. I am very grateful to this person, because without her, I would not have gotten my hands on a single item at all! One of the tips was to log in immediately when the sale hits ie. on the dot. If the sale is due on 9.01am, you MUST log in at 9.01am if you wish to secure any items at all. Secondly, get familiar with the scent descriptions beforehand (homework is required before purchase lol) so that when the sale hits, you do not waste time running through the scent list because by the time you are done, the chances are, nothing is left. Thirdly, 15 minutes before the sale hits, the website will be down for maintenance, and when it is almost the sale time, you need to REFRESH your page every few seconds so that you do not miss out. Crazy huh?

On the first day of the sale, I sat at my table prepared. I had done my homework, plugged in the power charger, had my list of items ready and my cup of coffee by my side. True enough the site went down for maintenance. I sat in my chair brimming with excitement, waiting to see how true / insane this experience would be (I secretly did not believe my friend when she told me the level of insanity it was)...with my fingers poised to click the refresh button.

12.28...12.29...12.30am. I clicked refresh.

It felt like a battlefield. I could not see the mob of women sitting out there in the world desperately adding Moo's products into their carts, but I certainly could sense their presence, and more importantly I could witness them in action. The first item on my list were soaps (duh!) and in that 1 min that I lost (slow fingers), there were only 1/6 of the quantity left as shown in the availability bar. *Faint*

This was when I knew that I was not gonna end up with anything if I didn't get to it.

12.32am: Yours truly was desperately trying to add her stuff into her cart but everything she wanted was gone (either being held in another's cart or sold). All the scents I had diligently narrowed down in my homework were gone, and the popular items like scrubs, soaps, lip butters were selling out by the seconds. This was definitely turning into a nightmare.

And of course, I panicked. So I started adding ANYTHING I could get my hands on into my cart, regardless of the scent / product. As long as I could get my hands on something, I would have considered myself victorious that night.

I ended up with 6 items that night, NONE of which was a scent I picked, and there were doubles of items that I did not consider to buy either. Feeling rather disappointed with myself and the sale, I decided to try my luck the next day.


19th Sept, 9.30am (my time) / 9.30pm EST:

Deja vu. I sat again at my table, fingers poised, determined to get at least 3 items of my choice. REFRESH. Click.

Instantly it was madness all over again. Ever watched one of those sci-fi movies when a spaceship does a hyper jump only to emerge right smack in the middle of a war in space with hostile forces firing left right and center? This was exactly how it felt like. Immediately the furious adding of products into my cart began and the desperate attempts to secure my items along with possibly hundreds of women out there in the world.

You would think it was gold or something LOL And yet, there is something thrilling about all this fervor and experience, imagine tons of women out there at the SAME time, logging into the SAME website, trying to add the SAME items into their shopping carts within a matter of half an hour. For that brief moment, everybody is equal and you feel connected (albeit in a strange sort of way) to all the women out there who are in it with you.

My spoils for that evening - 12 items of which most were items that I wanted and in the scents I chose. My battle lasted 15 mins for me, and I checked out in 5 mins. The shopping cart has a hold for 30 mins only, after which all your items will be 'stolen' by others and you will have to restart the entire process with huge chances of having nothing much left to choose from.

Similar to the first day, the popular items sold out within 30-40 mins, however the rest of the items lasted a little longer. Towards the end day, Moo posted a message on FB that the site will be closed and no further purchasing is permitted.

How would I sum up my experience and my advice for those of you who, like me are newbies to Moona Lisa but yet wish to partake in the madness?


Never before have I ever gone through such a shopping experience, but there's always a first time ;)

Monday, 12 September 2011

It's been a while...

It's been a while since I last blogged because so many things have happened. Went on two trips; both my dog and I got sick; and now a mini re-painting project of the house by myself. Between making YT videos and replying comments as well as personal messages, I just have no time to blog :( Sorry everyone...!

Naturally during this period even though I did not blog, it doesn't mean that I ceased my shopping on soap lol! That'll never happen I assure you all :P

Of late I've bought from several other companies but there is a particular one that I really wish to highlight. This soapmaker has been making soaps for more than 10 years and is one of the nicest soapmakers I've ever had the pleasure of purchasing from. Her name is Kimberley and the company's name is My Nature's Art.

During my recent purchase from Kim (which incidentally is my second time doing so), I decided to buy more of her fabulous foaming sugar scrubs (as presents to my aunts) as well as try out her latest Fall Collection. Many soapers have developed a theme for Fall/Halloween and created stunning soaps centered around the theme. Kim's theme for this year is inspired from HBO's series True Blood, Harry Potter and a range called Dark Dreams.

My Nature's Art Foaming Sugar Scrub

Kim's scrubs are one of the best out there. The best part of buying her scrubs is that I am able to customize how thick I want the consistency to be; how well it foams and the scent strength. My personal preference is one that foams well and has gentle scrubbing abilities. These are not harsh on the skin and provides a soothing massage for the skin too. I love scrubs that do not leave me red all over; strip my skin squeaky clean; or leaves a greasy layer after washing it off.

Chai Tea is a soothing scent that encompasses notes of warm tea and slight spice, topped with a tinge of citrus in the background, almost like that of a grapefruit. Overall it is one that I feel works for both warmer and colder months.

Goddess Dancing is another scent which is outstanding. Green apples and citrus with notes of berries fill your nostrils when you pop the jar, after which a sweet candy-like scent emerges...making this scent utterly wonderful! It is one of those happy, cheerful scents.

Kim's scrubs come in two sizes - 4oz or 8oz. There is also an option to purchase 3 (4oz) for $19.99, which is a pretty good deal considering the quality of the product. Her scrubs are colourful, with pretty sugar crystals sprinkled on top to complete the look. Overall, it really is a bath product that should not be missed!

My Nature's Art website:
Kim's YouTube Channel: