Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Ipsy Glam Bag September 2013 Review

Yay September Ipsy Bag!  Actually... none of the previews thrilled me.  I was just seeing sooooo many things that had been in my bags before.  I was super-excited for one whole minute when I saw that they had Butter London polishes in some bags.  But then they updated our Glam Rooms and... none for me.  Sad panda.

However, it does seem that I've convinced Ipsy of my completely insane level of makeup obsession, because I got 5 makeup items this month!  Thank goodness I dodged the bullet of the poor people who got shampoo and conditioner (and if you got that bag, I am truly sorry!).

Then I got my bag, and was seriously underwhelmed.  To be fair, I just don't think anything could have stood up to the awesomeness that was my August bag.  But my Sept bag was definitely lacking in awesomeness.

Here's the first view:

Ok, so we have the bag o'stuff, the Classic Beauty theme insert card, and... hey, what is this giant card?  Oh, that's right, Ipsy founder Michelle Phan is promoting her new beauty line, em cosmetics!  And we got... GIANT CARDS.  With, unfortunately, teeny-tiny samples.

Practically microscopic!

OK, adorable idea and all, and awesome that we got to see the whole Life Palette in action, but seriously?  Micro-thin samples of 3 eyeshadows and a blush, sealed in with plastic... hmmm.  Not really my idea on how to get a good try of a product.  Especially because directly above the samples, there's a tiny line of text that says "Sample for evaluation of texture and aesthetic properties only." Whaaaat?  So it's a sample that I can't even try out?  Way to make this month even less exciting.

Sorry, totally not trying to ruin this month with my complete lack of enthusiasm.  Let's check out the products, shall we?

First we have...

It's So Big Volumizing Mascara by Elizabeth Mott (0.14 fl oz, $7.99)

I have a sense of deja vu here... hmmm... Oh wait!  It's because I got a mascara LAST month, too!  From Pixi Beauty!  I have a total mascara hoard now.  Especially because I recently hosted an Ipsy + Benefit LashBash (now THAT was pure awesomeness!) and got a full size of Benefit's They're Real Mascara, which is my Holy Grail of mascaras.  I have found The One mascara I'm meant to be with forever, and of course now I'm doomed to get "other" mascaras forever!  The one good thing is they make great little stocking stuffers for all my lady friends and family!  I'm going to be a mascara-slinging Oprah!  "You get a mascara... and YOU get a mascara!  EVERYBODY GETS A MASCARA!"

Obviously, I haven't opened the mascara and tried it.  I've read several online reviews, and it's mostly a resounding "meh".  It's OK, great for everyday looks, but not much volume.  Ergo, it will go to one of my friends who likes a more "natural" look.

The second item was...

Starlooks Kohl Liner in Obsidian (full-size, $12)

Oh, wow!  A black eyeliner!  I've never gotten one of those in a subscription box before!

Haha... no... wait.... I get them ALL the time!  Black eyeliners, like mascara, are one of those items that works for pretty much anyone, so they get thrown into subscriptions all the time.  And I do love the Starlooks brand of makeup.  I had their makeup subscription box until recently (when I woke up and realized I had waaaaay too much stuff!).  However, I have an Urban Decay Liner in Zero from my Dec 2012 Ipsy bag that won't be running out anytime soon!  Therefore, I'm adding it to my giveaway pile.  The reviews on this liner are pretty great - the color is rich, the formula is creamy, and it blends really well!  This is absolutely going to someone who favors a dramatic, glamorous look!

Ok, Item 3!

NYX Single Eyeshadow in Purple (full-size, 2.4 g, $4.50)
NYX is one of those great brands that has both 1) amazing products and 2) affordable prices.  And you KNOW how I love those affordable prices!  They're also often on sale at Ulta for Buy 1, Get 1 50% off!  My favorite NYX item is their Jumbo Eye Pencil in Milk.  It's a matte white color, and when you apply it all over your lids before doing your eyeshadow, it makes bright colors pop beautifully!  It's also a great primer.  However, I wasn't fond of this shadow.  I have too many purples already, and I tend to use a purple this bright only once or twice a year as an accent shade.  I could never use this much bright purple shadow!  I had decided to just add it to my giveaway pile (which is growing exponentially this month!), when I saw a thread about the shadows on MakeupTalk.  NYX offered to trade out colors if we didn't like what we got!  I contacted them, and they're sending a deep matte brown shade instead!  I'm so thrilled, I will use a shade like that almost every day, and when I asked them about mailing the purple one back, they told me to keep it!  (Ergo, another fun-loving friend will be unwrapping this baby at Christmas!)

Amazing customer service, great prices, and beautiful products!  Yay NYX!

Onward and upward... Item 4!

Cailyn Cosmetics Tinted Lip Balm in Big Apple (full size, 3.0 g, $19)

I've received a Cailyn product once before, their Gel Eyeliner in Purple from my June bag.  I was so not comfortable with gel eyeliners at the time, so I traded it away.  However, I love me a bright lippie, so I was all over this one!

Bottom of the Cailyn Balm
I broke it down to show you the color and how it worked!

First of all, the design is genius!  There's a lip brush hidden in the lid, so you can apply this and keep it in your purse without worrying about staining your bag!

However...  calling this a lip balm is laughable.  The formula is dry and staining, not sheer and moisturizing.  Personally, I think it should be called a lip stain.  I tried it once, the color is amazing, a true classic red, and it does stay on for hours!  But don't expect to have happy lips!  The best way to wear this is to apply it, let it dry, and then use a REAL balm over it to keep your lips moisturized.

And the last item this month...

J.Cat Lipstick in Honeycrisp (full-size, 3.0 g, $2.49)

I want to like J. Cat, I really do.  Their items are affordable, and I really do need to just break down and buy a few things from them, but they seriously make the WORST choices on what to put in the Ipsy bags.  J.Cat also put an item in the June Ipsy bag.  A glitter palette.  It was laughed at and booed by almost everyone who got it.  I personally was OK with mine because I was able to use it as part of my face makeup when I cheered on my son's Little League team this summer, but mostly people were just... cranky.  I had high hopes for this lipstick until I saw a swatch.  It's a really pretty nude color... that matches my skin almost exactly!  It will be perfect for Halloween, if I decide to go as a Corpse Bride!

Zombieeeee Lipstiiiiick... eerrraarrerrgh.
However, the formula feels great on my lips and is very moisturizing!  (See, Cailyn?  A LIPSTICK is more moisturizing than your Lip BALM!)  I'm going to play around with layering the J.Cat over or under the Cailyn and see if I can't find a happy compromise.

So, that was my bag this month.  Value-wise, I got a great deal.  Four out of the five items were full size, and my bag was worth $45.98!  But personally, it wasn't worth that much.  3 out of the 5 items went into my giveaway stash, one makes me look dead, and the other is too bright for everyday wear.  Thankfully, I do like the bag!


Hopefully the October spoilers will start showing up in a few days.  I'm nowhere close to cancelling Ipsy, I know that I'm taking a gamble each month on getting it, and this month wasn't a winner for me.  However, hope springs eternal, and I'm definitely hoping for some awesome stuff in October! And of course, I'm still using all of the awesomeness from my August bag!

What did you get in your September bag?  Interested in signing up for Ipsy?  They do have a waitlist right now, and clicking my link won't help you jump the line.  But it does earn points for me to get cool stuff from Ipsy through their referral program!  (I will always be honest and disclose the benefits I receive from referral links!)

I hope you're having a wonderful day!


  1. Hi Leigh :) It's Majka again :)

    That makeup bag is so lovely! You must have loads now if they send you one in every subscription!

    Yes that "sample" seems frustrating! Burberry gave me some samples of their Burberry Body fragrance too but you just peel it off and smell it. That's no fun!!!!

    1. Hi Majka!

      Haha I do have a TON of makeup bags now! I use them to organize my makeup, my jewelry... and I'm using several of them as gift bags for the holidays!

      And those are definitely my least favorite fragrance samples! Perfume can change drastically on my skin, so I need to be able to wear it around, not just smell it on a card! No fun at all!

  2. I have serious bag envy! I liked what I received, but I loved what others got, too! Hopefully Ipsy will figure out that I WANT Cailyn in a bag- I've been passed over both times their items have been a bag. I'm thrilled to hear that Nyx swapped out the shadow for you, that's awesome!

    1. Thanks! I found out that "loving" looks on Ipsy has a lot more to do with your glam bag than that silly quiz! I loved a whole bunch of 50s style glamorous looks, and I've been getting bold makeup colors and (in my opinion) better stuff for the last 2 months. I wasn't really enthused by my Sept bag, but it was kind of the best of the possibilities (except for that darn Butter London!)

      Congrats again on your LashBash prize! I can't wait to see your post about your prize!

    2. Leigh- I still haven't had a response from Ipsy as to WHAT exactly I won!

      However, I DID tag you for Autumn Tag :) My post is up today if you want to see the questions and play along :)

  3. I would LOVE to get a black eye liner in a subscription box.... Ive gotten lots of mascaras... no black eye liner... just bright blue. And that bag is beautiful!

    1. Hi, Alison!

      The bag is definitely becoming my favorite September item! If you stick with your subs long enough, trust me you'll stock up on black liners! Which subs do you get?

      Thanks for stopping by!


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