March Ipsy Glambag – “Destination Beauty”

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Guess what time it is. It’s Ipsy time! It feels like it’s been so long since I’ve done an Ipsy unbagging. For $10 USD (plus tax in some states), you get a makeup bag filled with on average 4-5 deluxe sized samples and some full-size beauty products. You take a short quiz and based on your answers, you are “matched” up with products that are “personally” chosen for you. The accuracy of IpsyMatch is iffy to some subscribers. To subscribe or just to read more about Ipsy, you can click here. This month’s bag theme is “Destination Beauty.” I’m a little late with this post– I actually received my bag almost two weeks ago but I was a little underwhelmed this month.

Let’s start with the bag itself. So it looks like Ipsy is doing a series of bags in unique prints for the new Artist Series. This month’s bag was designed by Klari Reis and is from her geography-based series called “Street Anatomy.” I’m going to be honest, I’m not a fan of the bag. It’s nothing against the artist– I took a look at her web portfolio and her work really is amazing, and I love the fact that Ipsy has chosen to reach out to artists because it’s giving them lots of exposure. It is how the artist’s work was printed on the bag that leaves something to be desired. As a non-SF person, it just looks like tons of colorful blobs (the print quality doesn’t help any either). Had the print been smaller and showed more of the work itself, I probably could have appreciated it more.

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With that being said, here are the products I received this month:
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1. bareMinerals Marvelous Moxie lipstick in Get Ready (bareminerals.com, full size $18)

bareMinerals is a repeat brand with Ipsy but we don’t get it often enough for me to be sick of it, thank goodness. This month, subscribers received either the Marvelous Moxie lipstick of lipgloss. The last time I received bareMinerals, I received a lipgloss so I’m glad I received a different product. The lipstick is in the shade Get Ready which is a warm rose pink color. The formula has a satin finish and leaves my lips feeling moisturized. The color is really pretty and I can see it complimenting just about every skin color, yes, even mine.

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It is a pretty decent sized sample, it would be perfect to carry around in your makeup bag or purse or in your travel bag.

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2. Pixi flawless beauty primer (pixibeauty.com, full-size $22)

I always welcome primer samples. My success with primers has been 50/50– Smashbox Photo Finish worked well with my skin as did the Mirabella Prime for face & eyes I got in a previous bag, but some others have caused me to break out, one of which was the Pixi Flawless & Poreless primer that I received in a Target Beauty Box.

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Unlike the Smashbox and Mirabella primers, this primer is not clear/silicone but instead has a tint when dispensed and blends in like a moisturizer. It does leave a bit of a sheen when blended. Unfortunately, I’ve been working really hard to clear any current breakout that I’ve been dealing with to risk another breakout from another Pixi primer.

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3. Chella eyeliner pen in indigo blue (chella.com, full size $24)

I love eyeliner pens. If you ask me if I prefer pencils/kohl, gel, liquid, or pens, I will say pen just about every time. They’re easy to use, no additional brush required, and they allow for precision application– what more could you want? So, yes, I love that I received an eyeliner pen. What I’m on the fence about is that… it’s blue.

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I know many people on forums have been crying out for colored eyeliner and I would have also welcomed color if it were, ohhhhh I don’t know, purple, green, or gold. I’m not much of a blue around the eyes person. In terms of the applicator and formula, the pen tip is very easy to manage, you can draw a thin or thick line depending on how you hold the pen, and the formula is fairly budge proof. The blue color is nice but not for me. It’s too bad that Chella only offers this eyeliner pen in black and indigo blue. It’s also too bad that it’s $24. I’ll stick with Jessie’s Girl.

They do have a visible black band but thankfully it isn’t as thick as others that I’ve seen. These have potential for me… you know, once I actually start wearing false lashes. At $3.99 per pair and they come with a tube of glue, they’re worth giving a try.

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4. NYX Love in Rio eyeshadow palette in the Brazilian (nyxcosmetics.com, full size $6)

I have said it many times, I love NYX. I also love neutral eyeshadows. So, it’s just about a given that I love NYX neutral eyeshadows. I just love NYX. This palette comes with three neutral eyeshadows (and a useless sponge applicator). The packaging is plastic and very lightweight but who care, it’s NYX and I love NYX. I detail I noticed about the packaging that I thought was cute was on the front closure– it looks like a bow. You can’t tell me that’s not cute.

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So here are the shades that are included in the palette:

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They are dark brown, nude pink, and shimmery toffee. All are velvety soft. The dark brown is a matte shade that is perfect for defining the crease. Nude pink is a slightly shimmery shade though you can’t tell in my photos. It has teeny tiny specks of glitter and strikes me more of as a champagne color and looks really pretty in the corners of the eyes or to accentuate the middle of the eyelid. I probably wouldn’t use it as a brow highlight. The shimmery toffee is, well, shimmery toffee and very pretty. It’s a great little palette to add to all of my other neutral palettes.

Here are swatches for the cosmetic items:

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In summary, while the NYX eyeshadow palette and bareMinerals lipstick are pluses in my book, the eyeliner is not something I could see myself using nor purchasing and I don’t want to risk my skin for the Pixi primer due to past experiences with face products from the brand.  I see my time with Ipsy coming to an end soon.

Did you receive your March Ipsy glambag? What did you get?

January Ipsy Glambag – “19 Reasons”

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Mid month is one of my favorite times because, as always, it’s Ipsy time! For $10 USD (plus tax in some states), you get a makeup bag filled with on average 4-5 deluxe sized samples and some full-size beauty products. You take a short quiz and based on your answers, you are “matched” up with products that are “personally” chosen for you. The accuracy of IpsyMatch is iffy to some subscribers. To subscribe or just to read more about Ipsy, you can click here. This month’s bag theme is “19 Reasons.” Ipsy explained the reason for the bag on their Facebook page:

There was once a famous sign in San Francisco that read “17 Reasons Why.” It was originally erected by a furniture company in the 1930s, but was left behind long after the business closed. Its unique structure and teasing mystery grew to ignite the city’s self-reflective tone of both cultural and personal aspirations. For this month’s ipsy theme, we sought to imitate what the 17 Reasons sign inspired in our city, and use its sentiments to inspire our own ipsy community. We want you to think about your reasons. The brands in your “19 Reasons” January bag are just the beginning of why 2014 will be your best year ever, and we want to hear from you! Once you get your postcard this month, be sure to write down your favorite reason that this year will be amazing, take a pic, and post it to Facebook or Instagram with the hashtag #ipsy for your chance to win a free year of Glam Bags for you or a friend.
P.S. We originally had 19 brands this month but got to add a 20th at the last minute!
What with there being 20 different brands participating in the glambags this month, I had high hopes that I would be able to try out different brands that I’d never used before but I’ll get to that in a bit. The bag itself is a bit lackluster for me:
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The colors are pretty but I’m not too fond of the design. Also, when I first opened my pretty, shiny pink bubble wrap envelope I was immediately overwhelmed by the smell of plastic pool toy or inflatable furniture. I’m crossing my fingers that the smell will fade overtime.
Here are the products I received this month:

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1. Mica Beauty tinted lip balm in natural (micabeauty.com, full size, $30)

The first item in my bag is from a repeat brand, Mica Beauty. To begin with, I’m not a fan of potted lip products because I have to either use my finger or a I have to bring a lip brush to apply it– not ideal. However, if you go to the Mica Beauty website, you’ll see that the product when ordered comes with a brush. But wait, doesn’t the packaging look familiar? This was discussed on one of the MUT forum and you will find these from Cailyn Cosmetics which are $19 versus $30 from Mica Beauty. But onto the product itself… Despite the lack of the brush, I do like the packaging. It is attractive– I tend to lean towards simple packaging and the clear pot with plain black lid that includes the company name is nice and simple.

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I received the tinted lip balm in the color natural. It actually matches my natural lip color pretty well, a mauve-pink color that is not bold but still provides a sheer color to the lips. It does provide a smooth feel on the lips, however I did find it to be slightly drying which is the opposite of what I expect a lip balm to provide which is similar to what I experienced when I tried the Cailyn tinted lip balm in big apple.

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2. Elizabeth Mott smooth shadow in pearl (elizabethmott.com, full-size, $14.99)

After receiving this product, I can say that I have tried everything that Elizabeth Mott has to offer– there are only 3 on the website– which also means that this is another repeat brand for me. I received the Smooth Shadow creamy eye pencil in the color pearl. The barrel of the pencil, I believe, is plastic but you are able to sharpen it. When I think of pearls or pearl color, I think of an iridescent white. The color on this to me is more of a shimmery cream/vanilla color. It has teeny tiny specks of glitter.

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The color is very pretty when swatched. I had high hopes for using this product as a brow highlight but when blended out the color seems to disappear and all you’re left with is the glitter. The product is still useable– I could still layer it over a different color (like NYX milk) for a brow highlight or simply use it as a waterliner.

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3. Épicé purifying exfoliant (epiceinternational.com, full size, $32)

Next item is the Épicé purifying exfoliant. This is a new brand for me from Ipsy so I was extremely excited to receive it. A little about my skin– I had horrible acne growing up (I still get minor breakouts as an adult) and I never listened to the whole “don’t pick at them!” thing and I am now left with visible acne scars. So, I welcome new exfoliants to try out. I can’t even BEGIN to try to describe what this product does myself so here is the description from the Épicé website:

A unique exfoliant which removes excess dirt and dead skin cells all while activating collagen production and hydrating your skin. This moisture rich formula utilizes mild, non-irritating and anti-bacterial cleansers with micro-fine polyspheres which enhances skin texture and clarity for a clean, fresh appearance. Purifying Exfoliant is also great to use on the entire body and after just a few uses, you will begin to see improvement in the look and feel of your skin.

Benefits

Micro-fine polyspheres gently exfoliate removing excess dead cells and environmental debris.
Exfoliation helps open pores, which increases excretion of toxins.
Packed with emollients, humectants and barrier protectors to hydrate dry, irritated skin.
Contains several natural collagen boosters for damaged skin.
Softens skin as it cleans.
Non-irritating, antiseptic, bacteria and fungus fighting properties.

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The sample size that I received is a pretty good size (1 oz) which is enough to try out the product and is also great for travel. The product comes in a flip top squeeze tube which I like and the full size product comes in a bottle with a pump. It has a very light scent which I find to be pleasant. The product is a gentle exfoliant– the grains are fine so the product is not abrasive when applied to the skin. I did experience a bit of an, I guess, burning sensation? Again, not too bothersome but it is there.

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4. Sexy Hair healthy sexy hair soy tri-wheat leave in conditioner (ulta.com, full size $17.95)

And yet another repeat brand. I got another product from the same HealthSexyHair line from SexyHair in a previous bag (April glambag) which was the Soy Renewal Nourishing Styling Treatment which left me feeling like a greasy mess no matter how much, or how little, product I used. To be honest, I was a bit disappointed when I saw in my glam room that I was going to be receiving this product. However, I despite my negative experience with this line previously, I figured I’d still give this a try. WOW, what a surprise! SexyHair, I am so sorry for ever having doubted you.

This spray leave-in conditioner has an amazing citrus and floral smell which I absolutely L-O-V-E. No greasiness and it left my normally coarse hair unbelievably soft. The leave-in conditioner that I have been using is Nexxus Humectress Luxe Ultimate Moisturizing leave-in spray which retails for about $10 for a 5.1 fl oz bottle but for an 8.5 fl oz bottle of the SexyHair leave-in for $17.95, I might just break and buy this bottle. The Nexxus has lasted me for at least a year now so the SexyHair would last me FOREVER.

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5. Proactiv+ mark facing pads (4) (proactiv.com)

It seems as though Ipsy got my skin type and problems right on the dot this month because they sent me 4 of the Proactiv+ mark fading pads. This is not a repeat brand from Ipsy, however I did use Proactiv (not Proactiv+) in my teen years for my skin problems. From what I’ve read, you cannot buy these alone from the Proactiv+ website or via phone without ordering a full kit but I have seen them on Amazon. I have also seen the Proactiv kiosks in most of the malls that I’ve got to so perhaps you can buy the pads along from them.

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I’ve read a lot of negative comments about the Proactiv+ products in general but I’ve never used it (I guess the formulation is different from when I was using Proactiv?). As I mentioned earlier, I have lots of acne scarring so this is something that I would be interested in trying out. However, with being sent 4 of the towelettes, I’m going to have to get creative and cut them up to get more use and really see how they work? I don’t know.

And, of course, here are swatches of the two cosmetic items that I received, Elizabeth Mott smooth shadow in pearl on the left and Mica Beauty tinted lip balm in natural on the right:

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So, now back to my comment about there being 20 different brands being offered with this month’s bag and my hopes for trying new brands. I received 2 out of 5 new brands (1.5 new brands with the Proactiv/Proactiv+?). Out of what I received, at least 3 of the products will be useable, 4 depending on how my skin reacts to the mark fading pads. I’m disappointed with the tinted lip balm which may be sitting right next to my Cailyn tinted lip balm unused. I will, however, continue to subscribe to Ipsy for fear that I might miss out on something great in the next bag. I am very pleased that Ipsy included more skincare products for January than beauty products thgough.

Are you interested in receiving beauty products in the mail each month to try out? Subcribe now here! Did you receive the January Ipsy glambag? What did you receive in yours? How do you like the products?

October Ipsy Glambag – “The Art of Beauty”

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It’s about that time again! As usual, Ipsy is a monthly beauty subscription. For $10 USD (plus tax in some states), you get a makeup bag filled with on average 4-5 deluxe sized samples and some full-size beauty products. You take a short quiz and based on your answers, you are “matched” up with products that are “personally” chosen for you. The accuracy of IpsyMatch is iffy to some subscribers. To subscribe or just to read more about Ipsy, you can click here.

This month’s bag theme is “The Art of Beauty.” The artwork on the card is very eyecatching this time around. Nothing overdone, just simple with pops of color.

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And the brands that participated in this month’s bag:

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The bag looks a bit juvenile. It is white with a pink zipper and inner lining. I would have liked the bag more if it either had more of a design on it or if it didn’t have the writing.  The quote featured on the bag is from Ralph Waldo Emerson. Some people will recognize it; unfortunately, it went uncredited on the bag nor is there any reference to it on the information card. Too bad.

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If you’ve been subscribed to Ipsy for a few months, you’ll find the bag to be similar to one we received in April. I’ve been subscribed to Ipsy for one year and the April makeup bag is perhaps my favorite.

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The white outer material of the October bag (right) feels thinner and not as durable as that of the April bag (left). Another difference is that the October bag (right) has a plain pink inner lining whereas April’s (left) had a striped pink and white lining.

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And onto the products I received!

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1. Zoya nail polish in Neve (Zoya, full size, $8)

Zoya is a very popular nail polish brand that, for me, is very hard to come by so I always get excited when I find out we’ll be receiving it in our Ipsy glambags. Zoya is big 5 free (no formaldehyde, formaldehyde resin, toluene, dibutyl pthalate, or camphor). The formulas are very long lasting.

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This month, I received Neve from the Fall 2013 Cashmeres and Satins Collection. I’ve been into blue nail polishes as of late so I’m extremely happy that I received this gorgeous metallic blue.

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I just did my mani last night and I’m not quite ready to take it off so I will not be swatching this Zoya polish for this post. I will in a future post to keep an eye out for that!

 

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2. SexyHair texturizing spray clay (Ulta, full-size, $18.95)

We seem to have been getting SexyHair products quite often and most times I don’t use them. This month one of our five items was guaranteed to be a SexyHair product, either a blow dry gel or texturizing spray clay– I received the spray clay. It is a 1.4 oz deluxe sample sized aerosol can.

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I will say that one of the things I do like about this is the packaging. There’s something about black packaging that draws me in. Unfortunately, I don’t think I will be using this product. My husband did just get his hair cut so I will be giving to him to try out.

 

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3. Nourish Organic coconut & argan body lotion (Nourish Organic, full size, $11.99)

One of the items that I could never get enough of, especially in the colder months, is lotion. My hands get ridiculously dry so I was crossing my fingers for lotion or hand cream. Ipsy was also giving out Be Delectable by Cake Beauty which I was kind of hoping for since they posted a pre-spoiler (?) of cupcakes for it. I have a thing for cupcakes. I didn’t get the Be Delectable cream; I instead received Nourish Organic. The formula is 100% certified organic and contains Moroccan Argan oil, coconut oil, and hibiscus. It has a very pleasant scent, not at all overpowering.

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Just as the back of the tube says, it absorbed very quickly and did not leave a greasy feeling on my hands. The size of the tube is very convenient and fits into my Phillip Lim for Target mini gusset bag perfectly.

 

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4. Bella Terra mineral shimmer in Emotion  (Bella Terra, full size $14.99)

Every month Ipsy has any kind of loose powder as an “or” item, I get it. This month was no exception. The containers sent out were just short of full size (container in our glambags is 2.0g, full size is 2.5g).

2013Oct_Ipsy_BellaTerra02The packaging is pretty typical of a loose powder– a screw top container with a shaker lid. THE COLOR IS GORGEOUS! It looks different than what is shown on their website. It looks more mauve/red/pinkish on the website’s picture but in person it’s a super shiny, metallic, purple/plum color. The swatches below show the color in natural light (left) and indoor with flash (right).

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It is very finely milled and applied smooth. It’s also extremely easy to blend. I don’ typically wear dark or bold colors on my eyes during the daytime but this will definitely get lots of wear during evening events especially now with the holiday season right around the corner.

 

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5. Coastal Scents medium shadow brush (Coastal Scents, $2.49)

I’m going to be honest, I was NOT happy when my glam room showed that I’d be getting an eyeshadow brush. I mean, I can get makeup brushes anywhere! With that said, I am quite pleased I received one in my bag, hah. I received Coastal Scents’ natural classic medium shadow brush.

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One of the things that I don’t like about some brushes is that the hairs shed easily or they are too stiff or hard and hurt my eyelids when I apply eyeshadow with them. The head on this brush is soooo soft. The size of the brush is perfect for my application. The handle of the brush is plain black and silver just the way I like them with the name and brush number written on it. The only downside so far is that there is excess glue on the silver part of the brush. Not a big deal for me.

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When I first peaked into my glam room before I received my bag, I really wasn’t sure how I’d feel about it. Sure, I was looking forward to the Zoya polish and I was happy that I’d be getting a lotion but the other three products didn’t get me excited. I was pleasantly surprised. Out of the products I received, four I will find myself using often. The other product (the texturizing spray clay) sadly has no place on my vanity but hopefully it will find a happy home with my hair product junky of a husband. If you aren’t a current subscriber, I think you should definitely give it a try at only $10 a month. You can always cancel at anytime. Subcribe now here!

Did you receive the October Ipsy glambag? What did you receive in yours? How do you like the products?