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?

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Claudia Stevens Facial Prep Foundation Base

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I am by no means a makeup pro. I still consider myself a beginner despite being almost 30 *shudders* but I know what kinds of amazing things a primer can do for your makeup or atleast my makeup. I’ve used a handful of primers– Smashbox Photo Finish (regular formula and light), Mirabella Prime which I received from Ipsy, Avon Magix Face Perfector, I think one from Rimmel… but most of the primers that have worked for me come at a price and that price is more that can fit into my budget.

So internet searching I went looking for a primer that is similar in performance and affordable in price. I read reviews about a couple that could be found at Sally’s so I took a trip in. I stood there about ten minutes reading more reviews on the products and staring at them before I asked one of the employees if there were any specific primers she’d recommend for my skin type (I have oily, acne-prone skin). She recommended this Claudia Stevens primer (which happened to be one of the ones I had read about) because of some of the ingredients that were good for something something… I forgot what she said BUT I had visitors waiting at our house and wasn’t supposed to be out shopping so I bought it without asking anymore questions. A number of the reviews said it was comparable to Smashbox Photo Finish and I was about to find out for myself.

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I paid $6 or $7 for just over 1 oz so already it was a steal. It comes it a squeeze tube.

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It is a silicone formula similar to PF so I had high hopes for it. It’s also clear and texture-wise, it is very similar. It applied very nicely onto my face and left a smooth feeling to it. I wore it throughout the workday for a total of about 10 hours total. I blotted about 4 hours into wear. My makeup held up nicely throughout the day. I love PF but in terms of performance, the Claudia Stevens could be a good cheaper alternative.

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Would I purchase this again? Mayyyybe, maybe not. I know what you’re thinking, “Why not? You just said it’s like Photofinish?! It is , yes, BUT my poor face! I broke out on my cheeks and chin. Is it primarily due to the primer? Maybe. I stopped using the product after the breakouts appeared so I can give my skin some time to rest and heal. I’ll give the product another go down the line and hope for a better result.

If you’re skin is able to tolerate silicone products and you don’t easily break out as I do then this product would probably work well for you but I’ll have to get back to you for myself.