LAXtoLuxury Black Friday 2023 Shopping Guide

To know me is to know I like nice things, but I love nice things at a value even more. While Black Friday/Cyber Monday (BFCM) sales are notoriously less exciting these days, it’s still a great time to score some decent deals. Here are my can’t-live-withouts along with some things I’ve been eyeing!

Note that some of the links below are affiliate links, meaning I may get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through such links, at no cost to you!

Card Strategy

I’ll be putting my non-bonused spend (which should be everything below) on my Bilt or Capital One Venture X cards this Black Friday.

The Venture X offers 2x points on non-bonused spend daily, making it my usual go-to for non-bonused spend. However, Bilt’s Black Friday promo is offering 2x points for the next few days starting today (this promo is usually reserved for the first day of every month). This is a great opportunity to rack up some additional Bilt points. You do need to make five transactions on your Bilt card per statement period to earn these points.

Note that the Bilt card is not just for renters. I’ve learned from my DMs that this is a common misconception; I do not rent and I’ve still gotten plenty of value from it in the short time I’ve had it thanks to promo bonuses like this. The Bilt card is advertised for renters because the ability to earn points on rent is a differentiating point for the program, but it is not an exclusionary point.

For bigger ticket items for which I may want an extended warranty (ex we’re thinking of replacing our TV), I’ll likely put those on the Venture X if their extended warranty benefits apply to such purchases.

To the extent that any of these retailers are listed on shopping portals like Rakuten, I’ll also shop through such portals to further enhance my point earnings. I’d advise searching Rakuten or airline shopping portals for any retailers you’ll be shopping with to ensure you’re maximizing your point earnings.

Time-Tested Travel Day Essentials

Paravel – 30% off

  • Aviator Carry-On Pluswas $425, now $298 – this is the same size as the decidedly less exciting Away Bigger Carry-On, but way more stylish. While the price point is usually more on the splurge side, at 30% off for BFCM, this is a steal at under $300.
  • Aviator Grand Checked Luggagewas $475, now $333 – I have this in Safari Green and consistently get questions at baggage claim asking where it’s from when people see me grab it off the belt.
  • Weekenderwas $295, now $207 – I switch between this and the Beis Mini Weekender now as my go-to personal item. I love how the trolley sleeve is hidden in the design of the bag! This Weekender is very classic in its style, looks incredible when personalized with the hand-painted lettering, and fits a ton despite not looking super bulky on top of my carry on. I wish it had more interior organization pockets (it has two larger interior zipper pockets) or a dedicated laptop compartment, but otherwise, it’s functional and looks great when paired with my Paravel carry on.
  • Cabana See-All Duowas $170, now $119 – this set is so sleek, especially with a monogram. I think this is a great price point for a gift, too! The smaller zipper case has been perfect for storing my prescriptions and other meds, electrolyte packets, tampons etc super stylishly. The larger zipper case stores my Dyson Airwrap attachments along with my travel-size hair products like a flyaway gel stick, scalp massager and my Color Wow spray. I originally got the trio with the jewelry case, but I’ve found less use for the jewelry case than I thought I would (imagine, from someone who wears the exact same earrings and necklace every day of her life!).

Beis – 25% off

  • Carry-Onwas $218, now $163.50 – I have yet to try this bag internationally where bag standards can be a bit tighter (visually, it does look a little large). I do love the size for my domestic trips, though. I think the price point is incredible for the quality, so if Paravel is a bit of a stretch for you, Beis is definitely more accessible.
  • Mini-Weekenderwas $98, now $73.50 – if I’m being completely honest, I didn’t want to love this because I thought it looked comically oversized from afar. However, over a few trips now, I’ve grown to love it. The bottom pocket, which I originally thought was a bit gimmicky, has been perfect for storing things I want to access easily that I otherwise might have to dig to find. I have some trouble closing the dopp-kit-style top zipper sometimes, but that struggle is worth the bag’s overall functionality.

Uniqlo – 25% off

  • Shoulder bagwas $20, now $14.90 – this is typically a steal already at $20, but with an additional 25% off (under $15!), it’s a no-brainer. I’m buying a couple more colors. It fits so much, can be slung crossbody for security, and is water-repellent. I swear by this bag.

Bose – $50-130 off

  • QuietComfort Ultrawas $429, now $379 – I’ve had my QC35s for over half a decade (talk about longevity and quality!) and I swear by them, but I just pulled the trigger on these as an upgrade pick. This discount is underwhelming, but they just came out and are getting rave reviews from audiophiles. I ordered directly from Bose because of their risk-free 90-day returns, so if they’re not that much better than my trusty QC35s, I can return them.
  • QuietComfort 45was $329, now $199 – if you’re not ready to splurge for the Ultras just yet, but don’t have a good pair of noise-canceling headphones, this is a great price point for a newer version of the QC35s I’ve had for ages.

Soludos – 20-40% off

  • White leather sneakerswas $139, now $111 – take a look back at my LTK posts from the last couple of years and you’ll see one consistent feature: these sneakers. I’ve worn them to death and they’re usually the only sneakers I pack for any trip. They’re incredibly comfortable right out of the box and the quality is solid.

Beauty to Replenish

Dr Dennis Gross – 15-30% off

I had the opportunity to work with DDG earlier this year and have fallen in love with how the following three products work for me. I’ll be replenishing the peel pads and lip plumper today, and the red light mask is now an indispensable part of my skincare routine.

  • Alpha Beta Peel Padswas $92, now $64.40 for the standard size, was $153, now $107.10 for the supersize – I alternate use of the Universal and Gentle strengths. These are super travel-friendly too, since each day is individually wrapped!
  • SpectraLite FaceWare Prowas $455, now $386.75 – it’s a splurge, but I can’t live without it. It is probably the biggest gamechanger to my at-home skincare routine this year – you need to be consistent when using it, and I do notice a difference in my skin when a go a week+ without using it, but it’s done wonders for keeping my skin looking lifted, firm, and clear.
    • HOWEVER – do note that you need to charge it with a USB-A to USB-C charger (like the cord provided with the mask). I had read reviews for the mask before getting it and noted many reviews saying it stopped taking a charge after a few months, which is not something you want to hear for a product at this price point. When mine then stopped taking a charge a couple months ago, I was SO bummed. Then I looked up their troubleshooting guide and realized that in being lazy – I was charging it with my iPhone cord since it, too, was a USB-C cord – I wasn’t heeding the fact that it very specifically needs to be charged with a USC-A to USB-C cord, not the USB-C to USB-C cord (like what comes with the new iPhone) I had been using. Now it works perfectly!
  • Derminfusions Lip Plumperwas $45, now $34 through Violet Grey – I’ve never been a lip plumper product type of girl, but I’m obsessed with this one. It provides the perfect glossy sheen while giving me a bee-stung pouty look.

Armani Beauty – 30% off with code BF30

I stalk Armani Beauty sales because they don’t happen often, but when they do, they’re solid (30% off for BFCM this year!), and their products are holy grails for me. Perfect time to stock up!

  • Luminous Silk Foundationwas $69, now $48.30 – this has been a holy-grail foundation for me for years and I always use these sales as a chance to stock up. I find many foundation lines really fail to develop true neutrals in their range of undertones, and Luminous Silk excels in this area. I will be a Luminous Silk fan forever.
  • Eye Tint Liquid Eyeshadowwas $36, now $25.20 – in shade 22, Cashew, this is my perfect lazy-girl eye tint. It takes two seconds to apply, the formula blends so smoothly with my finger or a brush, and it gives just the right amount of dimension to elevate my daily look.
  • Luminous Silk Concealerwas $39, now $27.30 – for higher coverage, I usually go for the Hourglass Vanish Concealer, but on days when I want an easier product to work with and am fine with lighter coverage (which is most days!), I reach for this!
  • Luminous Silk Hydrating Primerwas $44, now $30.80 – this compact tube still packs a full 1oz of product while providing a glowing, hydrating base on for my makeup.

Hourglass – 20% off

I am an Hourglass stan and I find their products are incredibly underrated for the quality. At 20% off, the sale isn’t groundbreaking, but it’s still solid enough to prompt some restocks.

  • Phantom Glossy Balmwas $36, now $28.80 – I have never been a lip person, but these glossy balms converted me. I will wear these forever. I typically reach for shades Trace, Rise and Sense as glossy nudes for my skin tone, and Slip for a teensy bit more oomph.
  • Unlocked Mascarawas $32, now $25.60 – this is a tubing mascara, which I deem perfect for travel days because it doesn’t smudge like a traditional mascara. I actually have a Reel saved in my drafts on why I recommend tubing mascaras for travel specifically, but it’s also an everyday mascara for me.
  • Veil Skin Tintwas $49, now $39.20 – this gives you barely-there coverage… in a good way. Very my-skin-but-better. The shades are pretty flexible, but I mix 7 and 8 to accommodate how my skin tone changes throughout the seasons.
  • Unlocked holiday paletteswas $90, now $72 – these annual palette releases are my staple travel go-tos as they give you an entire face of HG’s signature fine-milled powders in one gorgeous compact.
  • Vanish Foundation Brushwas $47, now $37.60 – if I could only pack one makeup brush – literally one – this would be it. I live and die by this brush. It handles my foundation, cream blush, and cream bronzers flawlessly. I’ve owned mine since 2017 – it’s a trooper.
  • Voyeur Eyeshadow Stickwas $34, now $27.20 – specifically in the Moon shade for me, I find this to be the perfect easy, on-the-go inner eye highlight; thanks to the size and shape of the stick, it fits perfectly into my inner eye corner for that brightening pop that makes me look like I’ve had way more sleep than I typically manage.

Ilia – 20% off

Ilia is running a 20% off offer, which again, isn’t groundbreaking, but a great way to stock up on or try some new favorites.

  • Color Haze Multi-Use Pigmentwas $32, now $25.60 – I’ve been using shade Stutter as the perfect fall shade, and I think it’ll transition so well to winter. The pigmentation is great but also blends very easily to a gorgeous satin finish.
  • Super Serum Skin Tintwas $48, now $38.50 – my skin runs dry so I love me a dewy, shiny foundation – and this one gives you that shine. An oily girlie might not love it, but with a light hand, this gives me a gorgeous, easy glow on days when I don’t want to invest time in doing a full beat.

Briogeo – 30-50% off

A few years ago, I tried and didn’t love a hero product of theirs (a repairing deep conditioning mask), but this year I had the chance to revisit the brand and now can’t live without their Scalp Revival line! It’s incredible for those of us who get a bit greasy between washes.

  • Micro-Exfoliating Shampoowas $42, now $29.40 for the standard size, was $49, now $34.30 for the larger size, was $15, now $10.50 for the travel size – I love really working this into my scalp with their Stimulating Therapy Massager (was $18, now $9) whose longer nodules work through my hair more effectively than cheaper Amazon scalp massagers I’ve purchased.
  • Buildup Detox Spraywas $26, now $18.20 – spray ten minutes before a wash to let hero ingredients like salicylic acid and tea tree oil help control oil/sebum production while addressing flakiness.
Stay tuned for additional BFCM deals – I’ll be adding more as I continue to find relevant deals!

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