It's official: I just cancelled my Ipsy sub. I had purchased a year-long subscription back in August of last year (so September 2014 was my first bag) and I'm glad I did - it was certainly cheaper than paying per month with our dollar situation. But I'm finished now. I'm moving on. It's been swell but the swelling's gone down if you get my drift (and my Tank Girl reference). I've gotten a some great products, some so-so ones and a couple crappy ones. Mostly I've been happiest with the tools I've received (some brushes, tweezers and an eyelash curler - yes!) and most disappointed with the bronzers / tan and beige eye shadows and highlighters (soooo many!).
Here's the deets on the sub if you're interested: Ipsy, is a monthly subscription service which sends you 5 make-up, skin care or hair care items per month packaged in a make-up bag. The products are often deluxe sample sizes but there are usually a few full-size items as well. The cost is $10 per month with free shipping if you happen to live in the States but for those of us in Canada, add $4.95 shipping as well as exchange. There are savings to be had if you subscribe to a longer period, though. I paid for a year up front which worked out to $184.33 Canadian funds, or $15.36 per month - of course that was also at a time when our dollar was stronger. There is usually a waiting list but they often offer ways to skip the line.
tarte Deluxe Amazonian Clay Waterproof Bronzer in "Park Avenue Princess" (0.11oz sample is $12.37 value, full size is 0.33oz for $36)
This is a really nice product - good formula, nice packaging - just not for me. Seriously. I tried it. It looked kind of like dirt. I blended and used a very light hand and I really didn't see much of a difference. I'll keep trying because I want to like this more but this pale, pink-toned skin and bronzers just don't seem to mesh.
Coolway Beachy Salt Spray (0.5oz sample is $1.96 value, full size is 0.33oz for $12.95)
Since having my kids, my once poker straight hair is now kind of wavy so I thought the whole "beachy waves" vibe might work for me. It doesn't. This salt spray smells kind of salty and makes my already thick, verging on coarse, hair frizzy and tangly. Pass.
Jersey Shore Cosmetics Mongongo Vanilla Coconut Cream Lip Conditioner (FULL SIZE, $10 value)
Ridiculously long name. Really nice lip product. The scent and texture are both awesome - kind of creamy and sweet and moisturizing. Not sure I would pay $10 for it but I will gladly use this whole tube :)
Nicka K New York HQ Quad Eyeshadow (appears to be FULL SIZE, $4.99 value)
This isn't terrible. For a cheapo quad, the formulation is totally usable. Unfortunately, aside from the teal shade, the colours suck for me. That gold in particular. . . that gold. The other two are just meh.
Crown Brush Professional Tweezers ($6.99 value)
I have enjoyed the tools from Ipsy the most. Maybe it's because they're longer lasting than any sample will be. I think this is my 3rd pair of tweezers but you know what? I love them. They are a nice pair of tweezers with a slanted tip and for whatever reason, I can never find my tweezers when I need them. So now I have increased my odds of actually laying a hand on a pair of them - especially with this flashy pink shade :)
Not my highest value month at just over $36 (but still more than what I paid which is all I ask, really) but since the value for me is in my personal use of these products, a decent month nonetheless. I love the tweezers and the lip conditioner. I will enjoy playing around with the bronzer and eyeshadow although neither are a hit with me. And I'm glad I tried the sea salt spray. . . but I will likely never use it again (at least it was my lowest value item). Like I said, it's been fun with Ipsy but it's time to move on - pick my own eyeshadow and lip shades perhaps, spend my money on a nail polish sub and definitely more Fabletics (although not Fabkids - that's a story and a half for another day!). Ipsy's definitely a good gateway sub though so if you're looking to get into sub boxes, this is a good, relatively inexpensive one that, in my experience, is always a good value for your money - even with exchange. One more month!