I like my luxe products. But I like them even better when I score them on sale. Better still is when you receive a free gift with your purchase. This doesn’t happen everywhere, but it often does at the Nordstrom beauty counter in Calgary. Lucky me, I went with a gal pal who’s a total wheel in the make up department. She’d already lined up several free treatments. But anyone can do the same at Nordstrom! My gift to you, dear reader, is the DL on how to score yourself some free gifts and expert advice in this luxe department store.

Freebies at Nordstrom

The bonus is, you don’t have to arrive wearing a stitch of makeup.

Nordstrom free gifts

Know this: In order to score free gifts (not just gifts with purchase) at Nordstrom, you’ve got to look like a serious shopper. Dress up like you’re going out to dinner or coming back from a high powered meeting. You need to look the part. Then you need to spend some serious time at the various make up counters, asking lots of questions and trying samples. Nordstrom is quite good about give free hand and arm massages and free testers of whatever Jo Malone perfume you like.

Clarins facial

Saddle up to the Nordstrom Clarins counter and if they have time, they’ll give you a mini-facial. And not just a tone and cleanse, but a full on facial in condensed time. The thing with Clarins is this brand thinks water isn’t the best for hydrating skin. Many of their cleansers you just wipe off, same with the mask. This totally surprised me, but I gotta admit, I was totally glowing after I left. So radiant was I, a mom I met for wine later on that evening asked me if I’d just had sex!

While it’s not organic, Clarins products are all about plant-based beauty. One whiff of their Blue Orchid Face Treatment Oil and you’ll be hooked. Anyway, my facial began with a cleanse, which was wiped off with toner on cotton pads. Then this intriguing exfoliator was applied. You leave Gently Peeling on for a few minutes and then you rub it off with your hands. It’s kind of like the sensation and look when you peel glue off your hands. Natural clay drew out my impurities (here’s hoping) and these grey pellets flew off my face. For real, my skin looked super healthy after this.

facial at clarins

That’s Mona, my new BFF on the left.

Then I got a mask, I forget which one, but Mona will select the one that’s best for your skin (and she’ll probably amp it up with a luxe facial oil, too). The best part was the facial massage. Mona’s fingers worked their magic and I was in an utter state of bliss. Then it’s a on to moisturizing and if you’re lucky (and they have time), a fresh application of make up. 

Clarins women

Viola! The finished product.

FYI, I was really impressed with the Clarins’ FAQ section on their site. Want to know if you have oily skin, when’s the best time to moisturize or which foundation is best for your skin type they have the answers!

Nordstrom sale dates

Nordstrom typically has two sale dates each year. In Calgary it’s usually mid July and of course there’s one in January. Be sure to get yourself to Nordstrom on July 18 for their anniversary event. They’re giving away tote bags with beauty purchases and you can get a free, longer facial (30 minutes) from Clarins in the treatment room. Be sure to call and book in at 587-291-2000 extension 1055.