Friday, July 17, 2015

Ipsy Review - July 2015

Ipsy is probably my all time favorite subscription service, tied closely with Love With Food. I frequently get full sized products from them and they're almost always exactly perfect for not only my skin tone/type/hair type, but also my personality. After taking a quick quiz to show them exactly what your style is, you're put on a waitlist. Eventually, you become an Ipsy subscriber and you can look forward to deluxe samples and full size products from brands like Cailyn, Nyx, tarte, Pixi, Elizabeth Mott, Be A Bombshell, OPI and many more!

The best part of this service for me however, is that every month instead of a box, you get a one of a kind makeup bag to contain all your goodies. I may do a post eventually showing my favorites I've received so far. They're always high quality, and have stunning detail. I haven't had a single one fall apart on me in any way. As a bonus, for every review you do, and product you share on Facebook you get ipsyPoints and once you rack up enough, you can get exclusive items as rewards. You also get major discounts on all the brands you receive items from. This service is well worth your money.

How much money exactly? A mere $10 a month. Ships across the US and it's territories, APO, DPO, FPO and Canada.

My bag arrived on July 14th, in perfect condition. This is a little bit later than typical delivery, I usually get it around the 10th, sometimes up to the 12th. But with the weekend falling during that time frame I fully get it.

My opinion at first glance? Cute bag, nice pattern and colors. I'm not the biggest fan of their front zippered bags, I feel like I don't always get to utilize their full capacity. But honestly I have so many now, the ones I'm not in just absolute love with, I've been saving to send along with samples I can't use to my best friend. She also has an up and coming blog where she talks about fashion, beauty, reviews products and services and talks about the best deals she's found and sites you can use to get more for your dollar. You can find her blog here, expect great things.

Now then, onto what's inside!

Avene Eau Thermale Cleanance Soapless Gel Cleanser, $19.15 @ Amazon
This product promises acne fighting power, free of soap. It claims it'll clarify your skin without stripping it, and that you'll be left with soft and smooth skin. Now, I have severely sensitive skin, so that's going to be a major factor whenever reviewing ANY products. Anything can set my face off and make it feel like I have chemical burns. However I was pretty hopeful for this product, because I've used their Thermal Spring Water before and fell in love with it, especially during the hot summers here in Texas. It's just a can of what they claim is compressed mineral water straight from a thermal spring. I don't know if it's true, but I loved it and it made my skin softer. Probably just because of the moisture I was adding and then reapplying my face cream on top of.

So back on subject -- I tried this product, and honestly, it's genuinely not a bad product. No skin irritation, no breakouts, no reaction at all from this cleanser. It was just light, and effectively cleaned my skin. Bonus is for my skin type, it didn't dry it out as much as other cleansers. The only one that I've ever tried that has this style formula and affect on my skin is the Simple Cleansing Micellar Water. If this wasn't so expensive, especially compared to the aforementioned product, I'd totally suggest this. But the Simple is SO much cheaper for basically the same size bottle, and is very gentle on your skin. However if you have bad reactions to Simple, since I know everyone has different skin types and we're all always fighting to find the perfect products, I'd give this a try. If my Rosacea, dry skin and extremely sensitive skin didn't have any negative reactions, you should be safe!

City Color HD Powder, $5.99 @ City Color Cosmetics
This powder claims to give your foundation a matte finish, and aids in blurring fine lines and imperfections. It's translucent, so good for all skin tones apparently. With that being said, I can't say I'm the best person to review any skin related makeup product. I rare wear foundation, I don't know how to contour or mattify or anything fancy like that. I wear lip balms, occasionally lip sticks/glosses, and eyeliner/maybe eye-shadow if I'm going out with my significant other. But I'll still give it my best shot and see how it works.

I used this on top of my favorite foundation -- favorite primarily because it's cheap and actually in my skin tone - even porcelain in most brands is too dark for me, I'm not even exaggerating. It's called True Match by L'Oreal Paris, in the shade Alabaster (C1). Overall, it's a nice product. It's truly transluscent, unlike some powders out there which have a peachy look to them and wash out people with darker complexsions and make people like me look like a ghost. It looks better in pictures than it does in person, it really helps light be picked up on the face. Which is why I guess it's called HD powder, it truly plays for cameras well. In person it provides a light matte finish, which is great for people who have issues with looking oily throughout the day. And the feel is very satin-y to me, and light. A little drying, which is a problem for someone like me with dry skin already, but people with oily skin I feel would LOVE this product.

tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof Bronzer, $30.00 @ Sephora
I received what seems to be a full size, which is pretty impressive considering it's a tarte product. I've honestly been looking into their products for a VERY long time and watched nothing but great reviews about them and how great they are for skin prone to breakouts because of their ingredients. So I was pretty excited that I'd received even what I thought would be a sample, let alone a full size tarte product. Because I'm so pale and use makeup infrequently, bronzer is something I've honestly NEVER used. But that won't stop me from trying. I decided to use a brand new clean brush I bought from elf to apply, in case I want to give it to someone at another time if it doesn't work out for me.

Verdict is in - I actually love this. It's really light, and perfect for my skin tone. I think this will be a new date night staple for me. It adds definition, but not too much. I love enhancing my features not trying to get rid of them. And the best part is I don't even feel it on. Honestly, it's SO light weight. The thing I dislike about makeup the most is the caked on feel. Even the lightest of BB Creams feel like a sheet on my face, suffocating my poor skin. So I look for things that will feel lightweight, and look subtle. This is perfection. I'm glad to see tarte lives up to the hype surrounding them.

Be a Bombshell Lip Balm, $14 @ Be a Bombshell Cosmetics
I received a full-size lip balm in the 'shade' French Kiss. I say 'shade' because I notice no pigment. If there's supposed to be any, I'm pretty confused.

First thing I noticed was that there was no scent, and then quickly after I realized there's no taste either. It honestly tastes like those fake weird lip products that came in children's play makeup kits. You know the ones, I'm sure. That weird silly putty smell. Actually exactly like silly putty. I don't know if this is typical of their formulas, but it already made me feel unsure about putting this on my lips, for sure. Then double that with the fact NO WHERE on the packaging, or website is there a list of ingredients. It doesn't say paraben free, it doesn't say sulfate free, it doesn't say it's free of animal cruelty. I have no idea what I'm putting on my lips right now, and that's terrifying. I've had their products before through Ipsy and I never thought about it until this day, but NONE of their products have any ingredients listed on packaging, or online. I checked the side of the box and all the info it gave was their company copyright information and other various mumbo jumbo. I finally tried it, even though I didn't want to, and it was about as good as expected. Which is not good. I was 100% unbiased, and decided even if I didn't approve of their not listing formulas or anything else online, I'd give it my respect if it was a good product. It was not. It dried up my lips, left them feeling honestly more chapped, and offered no color at all. Maybe if someone has a darker skin tone on their lips, it would barely be visible. But on me, it just looked lightly glossy. Not impressed by any of this.

La Playa (Sea) Salt Spray by Octavio Molina, $15.50 @ Octavio Molina Hair
So, knowing my hair type, you'd think I'd KNOW this shouldn't be a good product for me, right? Puffy, frizzy, tight curls everywhere - none of this suggests using sea salt is ever a good option. But I wanted to give it my all, just like I did the spooky lip gloss.

So after my shower yesterday, I applied it to my roots, and no lower than mid-shaft, after combing it out. I then wrapped it in a towel to dry slowly. After about 30 minutes, I removed the towel and immediately my hair looked and felt fantastic. It was soft, my scalp felt 100% clean and fresh, as did my hair. Sometimes, due to dandruff/etc, my scalp and hair can feel a little oily or gunky. Even after showering, sadly. So to have it feel really clean and purified without being dry in any way was SO nice. But it took maybe 10 minutes for it to quadruple in size and puff up. It was still very soft, and it didn't feel dehydrated or crunchy or anything unpleasant. I just don't need volumizing.

I honestly couldn't get a comb through my hair after this fiasco, and ended up needing to rinse the product out and re-apply my leave-in conditioner spray. But I can say this, my hair has felt softer than it's ever felt since. I'm assuming this is due to the algae it claims to contain. If that's the case, I need to find a spray with it in it to use with my leave-in. Or maybe one that combines algae and sea buckthorn, the primary ingredient in my leave-in. As for salt sprays, I'm staying away. If you have issues with volume (thinner hair) and also straight hair that gets oily easily, then I'd use this. I'll be giving it to my mother who falls under both of those categories.

And that's it guys! If you're at all interested in this service, feel free to use my referral link you surely found multiple times in this post already, but you can find again here. Remember there is often a waitlist, and in my experience with friends and family it generally takes about a month for them to get to you. You'll (in my experience) be immediately charged when they finally clear you, so be prepared for that coming out at any given time. But honestly, they're worth every cent in my humble opinion. Thanks for stopping by!