Welcome to my monthly Ipsy glam bag review.
Like many people, I first saw Ipsy advertised on Facebook. As is to be expected with “Facebook products,” I met the adverts with a very high level of skepticism. Reading the comments below the FB posts, I just saw line after line of women asking the same question: Has anyone tried this? As a makeup lover, I didn’t want to pass up what seemed like a good chance to get some nicely-sized products every month from reputable brands for the price of one Starbucks run. I decided one day to give it a try. Hopefully, this monthly review series will give you a basis for which you can decide on whether you want to try out this subscription service for yourself—instead of walking in blindly like I did. Or, at the very least, gives you a review of some products that you may want to try out (or pass on) for yourself, whether you decide to subscribe or not (or maybe you just did not get them in your bag).
Quick FYI that I took note of (and it stuck with me) several months ago when I first subscribed: Ipsy advertises not having a wait-list. There is a small caveat to that- you have to sign up for the automatic payments to get that benefit, otherwise they’ll hit you with the “You’ll get a bag when we get to you”-kind of thing….
Now that that’s out of the way….
So, the monthly subscription is $10/month. You get 5 full- or deluxe-sized samples and a new makeup bag every month. Once you sign up, there are a series of questions Ipsy asks so they can match you with products. You can go back and change your answers at any time to better customize your matches. I have received some pretty great items from my Glam Bags in past months. It is a great way to discover new items that you may not have known about, and brands that you may have never even heard of. I have found some of my all-time favorite products (seriously, no B.S) through Ipsy. So, for that alone, I think $10 is a great deal. That being said, let’s take a look at what I received in my September Glam Bag to see—was it still worth it? Will I continue my subscription? Should you give it a try yourself?
Let’s start with my profile. Everyone’s bag varies according to their profiles. Below are my profile preferences for September, so you can better understand why I may have received the items that were sent to me. Furthermore, looking at the list of questions and the number of answer options shows the amount of detail that goes into your preferences. Just looking at my profile, you would think I chose every option available, but that is not the case at all. There were plenty of other options to choose and many options (obviously) that you don’t have to choose for yourself.
My Ipsy Profile Preferences for this month
|Comfort level with Makeup||Very|
|Brands (that you love or are willing to try)||BareMinerals, Benefit, Charlotte Tillbury, Ciaté, Clinique, Colour Pop, Dose of Colors, E.L.F., Estée Lauder, Glam Glow, Glossier., IT Cosmetics, Lime Crime, L’Oreal, Luxie, Makeup Geek, Makeup Forever, Marc Anthony, Maybelline, Milani, Nars, Nyx, Ofra, Origins, Ouai, Ahu Uemura, Smashbox, Tarte, the Balm, Tom Ford, Tony Moly, Too Faced, Trust Fund, Urban Decay, YSL|
|Types of Makeup Products||mascara , eye shadow, eye liner, brows, lipstick, liquid lipstick, lip gloss, lip liner, primer, concealer, foundation, powder, blush, highlighter, bronzer & contour, brushes & tools|
|Tpyes of skincare, haircare, nailcare that you love||cleanser, cleansing oil, moisturizer, sheet masks, serum, face oil, toner & mist, eye treatment, hand cream, lip balm, fragrance|
|Shade preference||Eyeshadows: neutrals, smokey, blues, greens, plums, adventurous|
|Eyeliner: black, brown, plum, gold/bronze, adventurous|
|Lips: Berries, neutrals|
|Nail polish: (None)|
|Blush: pinks, peaches|
|Fragrance notes||fresh, floral, gourmand, spicy|
|Where do you usually shop for beauty products||Sephora, Ulta, Walmart, Target|
|Skin Concerns||redness, fine lines & wrinkles, oiliness & large pores, acne & blemishes, dryness & dehydration, hyperpigmentation|
|Describe your hair||(None)|
Every month, Ipsy releases a new Glam Bag design. This month’s was a black, faux-leather (if you can even call it that), studded case. Very cute.
Using the above preferences, along with my reviews of my previous months’ Glam Bags, Ipsy decided to send me the following items:
Luxie Beauty Luxie Rose Gold Medium Angled Shading Eye Brush 207
I gave this item 5 out of 5 (you rate each product and your overall bag by the end of the month to help get better-personalized future bags… you even can put in detailed comments). The brush is synthetic and cruelty-free, which is nice for the humanely-conscious beauty-lovers like me. The bristles are soft and fluffy, and it blends shadows nicely. I always enjoy trying new makeup brushes. So, this was definitely a good pick for me. So far, I have gotten four Luxie brushes from Ipsy, not counting this one, (either purchased separately or received in my Glam Bag), and I love them all. They are all in my regular rotation. I also love rose-gold so two-thumbs way up for me.
Beauty For Real I-Line 24-7 Eyeliner, Champagne Buzz
Let’s start with two of the claims of this product (according to Ipsy): super pigmented & lasts all day.
I have one word in response—FALSE. The champagne color is pretty. It’s not the boldest or most pigmented liner I’ve used. But the real falsehood is the claim that it lasts all day…. I put it on and within minutes was like—-where did it go? Where? So, this product was 1 of 5. I love eyeliners, but if it doesn’t last…..what’s the point??
Smashbox Cosmetics Photo Finish Radiance Primer
So, in terms of the size of this product (because it seemed small at first)— it most certainly was not full-sized. It was 0.25 fl. oz. Considering that most full-sized foundations and primers are 1.0 fl. oz., I am not mad at the size of this. I would say that it is a deluxe sample as you can get multiple uses from it to really test the product. That being said, this product is another 1 of 5 stars for several reasons.
This primer felt very thick and heavy- which is odd for a primer. I have several different kinds of primers, and have never felt one of this thickness. My pores felt instantly clogged, and I did not see any “radiance” in my skin with just the primer. Furthermore, this was very irritating to my skin. As I said, my pores felt clogged instantly and I began to feel irritation. I didn’t even have a chance to test the primer with a foundation because I had to immediately wash my face. Instead of this product, I can use my Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Opal if I want a more radiant look.
Dear, Klairs Supple Preparation Facial Toner
This month, Ipsy collaborated with Soko Glam, a K-beauty (K stands for Korean) company that brings Korean skincare products to the US, to bring us some great K-beauty skin-care picks. Koreans (both men and women) are known for their incredible skin and intense skincare routines (10-13 steps DAILY). In an effort to save my face before I enter my thirties, I have been super into K-beauty and skin-care recently (the sheet-mask obsession is so real), so I was excited about this. Thankfully, my excitement was not misplaced.
This toner is a solid 5 out of 5. It is not like your typical toner. I regularly use a Rose Water Witch hazel toner <https://www.thayers.com/shop-thayers/premium-witch-hazel/thayers-alcohol-free-rose-petal-witch-hazel-toner/> which is good, but it is not like this. The Dear, Klairs toner is surprisingly moisturizing. I did not know toners could be so, but it is. It is not heavy, and feels really nice going onto the skin. You do not apply it with a cotton ball or pad; you put some in your palms and pat it gently onto your face. This toner is absolutely perfect for all skin types. I have oily skin with some very dry patches in my T-zone. It was hydrating without making my skin more oily, but it also moisturized my dry areas. Even under matte foundation, my dry patches were well taken care of.
This was a successful collaboration as I will definitely be checking out Soko Glam for more Korean skincare products…and wasn’t that the point.
Elizabeth Mott Pop! Goes The Shadow, Gunmetal
This was a middle-of-the-road item for me—3 of 5 stars. It was a single shadow (Ipsy has sent mini-palettes before). Very soft, easily blendable, pretty color. Not all shadows need to be ultra-pigmented. This one was not. It looks like a sheer gunmetal-colored velvet on the lid and would be good for a soft smoky eye (stay tuned for my upcoming post about the soft-smoky trend for this fall). My issue is that it is not long-lasting, even over a shadow primer. For that reason, even with its non-creasing ability, I have to take off two stars.
I think the variety of products in this month’s Glam Bag was great. Receiving tools, skincare and makeup gave me a chance to try a new product in every aspect of my beauty routine. As I said before, I think the collab with Soko Glam was definitely a success. I look forward to next month’s bag. I may tweak some of my profile settings, so come back next month to see what I get. 💜