My First Ipsy Review — August 2015

August Ipsy2

I’ve finally branched out into other subscription services! Ipsy is quickly becoming the hottest trend for beauty lovers. It was created by YouTube celebrity Michelle Phan and provides five sample or full-size makeup, skin or hair products and tools in a cute makeup bag. I felt the price was worth giving it a shot, and what girl doesn’t love trying out new brands and products that may make her look fabulous?

Ipsy Details

The service is only $10 a month. Upon signing up, you fill out a brief beauty quiz about what types of makeup you love and would like to receive, your features (eye color, skin type, etc.) and what brands you’d like to try out. Many brands they list are common, but there are some I’ve never heard of.

You get billed the first of each month and your glam bag is sent in the middle of the month. Unlike Stitch Fix, where it allows you the option to schedule boxes at will, Ipsy automatically schedules one every month and you must cancel on your own when you want to stop receiving bags. You get to keep everything that comes in the bag.

Each month’s bag features different products and a different theme, but subscribers mostly receive the same or similar products each month. For example, my bag might be the same as someone else, or it might have a few of the same and a few different items inside.

August Ipsy1I was pleased to receive a wide variety of products, and I adored the makeup bag. I love houndstooth! I was excited to try these out, as I’ve never heard of the brands that were featured in the pack.

Trust Fund Beauty Nail Polish in the shade Elegantly Wasted

Nail polish is like, one of my BIG things. Really. I’m a little obsessed and have a handmade Doctor Who themed rack to hold all of my bottles, and it’s full. I stick to the brands I like, but I was excited to try out a new company and liked getting a full-size bottle. When I went to the website, I found they retail for $15 and are cruelty free and vegan. Elegantly Wasted is a dusty lavender, which I think will be great for fall and winter. It has a great brush for wide, easy coverage and I got pretty good coverage in one coat, though I would paint two. Definitely a keeper!

August Ipsy4

Noyah Lipstick in the shade Desert Rose

This lipstick is pink. I mean, pink! It’s pretty, but I didn’t think it looked incredible when I applied it. The shade doesn’t quite match well with my skin tone, however it might once my summer tan fades and I become fair-skinned once again. I got a sample-size product, which says it’s all-natural, cruelty free, and synthetic free. A full-size stick retails for between $14 and $18. It’s creamy to apply, but it also had a scent and feel that reminded me of that cheap makeup for children. Does that make sense?
Look for a swatch photo in the next product review, where I pair it with a swatch of my next product.

August Ipsy5

Skone Cosmetics Luxe Doubler Eye & Lip Pencil in the shade Wine

Ipsy sent a full-size pencil in the bag, which retails for $12. Though it doubles as a lip liner and eye liner, I don’t think I’d use it on my eyes, since I like to stick with black liner. On the lips, it looks nice, and a color I’ll use, though it’s a bit brighter than I expected – more like a fuscia than a wine. It was easy to apply, and I noticed though it came off easily, it almost worked as a stain. Take off the excess product, add some lip gloss, and you’re good to go!
Here’s a swatch of the liner (left) next to the Noyah lipstick (right). I’m almost bummed they wouldn’t work together. The lipstick does look better on the pale side of my wrist, though.

August Ipsy3

La Fresh Group Good Night. Night Cream

I was excited to see this in my bag, as I have terribly dry skin and moisturize my face at least once a day. I was extra happy to see the product is paraben free, as parabens aren’t good for people with excema — another thing I deal with on a daily basis. This cream is part of the brand’s Eco-Beauty line and a full-size tub retails for $40. I used it the first night and it did feel really nice on my skin.

August Ipsy6

Briogeo Blossom & Bloom Volumizing Blow Dry Spray

Thanks to my dad’s genes, I was born with stick-straight, fine hair. It’s hard enough to style, but adding volume is pretty impossible without a lot of teasing and hair spray. I received a sample size in this product, and the full-size bottle retails for $18. It’s also paraben free, cruelty free, and vegan. I looked forward to trying it out, though I didn’t have great expectations, and sprayed it into my roots while my hair was still damp from a shower. Sure enough, I didn’t notice a difference, but it smelled really nice!

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Overall Thoughts

For my first glam bag, I’m pretty happy! I liked most of my products and I was pleased with the variety of items that fit to the beauty quiz I filled out. And come on, the bag is adorable. Though I received some sample-size products, the two full-size items I received totaled much more than the $10 subscription fee, so I think it’s a great deal. It’s also a great way to try new products for cheap.

On the negative side (there’s always one, right?), I think Ipsy needs to work on their shipping. They use DHL, which I honestly forgot even existed because no one uses them. From DHL they go to USPS. When your bag ships, Ipsy sends you a DHL tracking number. However, the tracking site hadn’t been updated since Aug. 11, and I got the bag on Aug. 15, two days after the estimated date of arrival according to DHL. So while waiting for the package, I had no idea where it was. That would be fine in general, but why send out a tracking number if the company never updates it? I did some research on the issue and apparently it’s been a thing in the past.

I also think there is a lack of fun when you’re receiving the same products as everyone else, instead of a fully-customized offering. One part I love about Stitch Fix is I get to see what other people receive, and no two boxes are identical. With Ipsy, you see the same photos, similar reviews. In my opinion, that’s just a bit boring. However, there’s a lot more work on my part with Stitch Fix, and barely any work for Ipsy.

I think I’ll keep with the service for now and see where this new adventure goes. If you want to try it for yourself, here’s a referral link you can use:

— K

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About Karin

Journalist, singer, reader, movie fanatic, photography buff, GVSU alum, wanna-be-Brit, Crohn's fighter, Coca-Cola addict, animal lover, not a kid person, hater of winter, Michigander
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