A new year and another 12 months of beauty box subscriptions! My bright blue Ipsy bag arrived in my mailbox recently, and although I knew in advance what I was going to be receiving thanks in part to my updated “Glam Room” on Ipsy’s official website, I was still pleasantly surprised by the size of the samples after I’d opened the bag and peered inside. This month’s theme is “19 Reasons,” for the 19 reasons to make 2014 an amazing new year. I’m not exactly sure why it’s 19 reasons instead of just 5, since each bag comes with only 5 samples- but I won’t nitpick.
What I Received:
Sexy Hair Healthy Sexy Hair Soy Tri-Wheat Leave In Conditioner
(MALIN+GOETZ) Mojito Lip Balm (*Full Size!*)
Elizabeth Mott Smooth Shadow in “Penny”
skiin Soothing and Smoothing Eye Cream
Proactiv+ Mark Fading Pads
I’m a big fan of the Sexy Hair line. From their shampoos and conditioners to their styling products and hairsprays. I consistently get good results that don’t damage my hair, fade my color, or make my scalp feel greasy (or dry.) I’ve seen this leave-in conditioner on display at my salon and had always been tempted to try it, but never actually got around to it- so I was pretty excited to be getting a decent sized sample of it in this month’s bag.
This spray is safe for color treated hair (awesome,) and is lightly scented- NOT overpowering (also awesome.) I apply it after my shower and let my curls air dry. My hair feels softer and healthier, but this leave-in doesn’t really do a lot for frizz control. I recommend using another styling product hand in hand with this so you get all the benefits this conditioner has to offer, as well as a little help in taming frizz and fly-aways.
Would I Purchase?: Yes! This is a really nice leave-in conditioner that’s loaded with good ingredients (soy and cocoa being the big ones,) that nourish the hair without weighing it down. I would absolutely purchase a full size of this to keep my hair healthy, shiny, and strong. Well done, Sexy Hair.
My lips take a beating in the winter. The frigid temperatures leave them dry, cracked, and sore- and God forbid I get sick. The common cold seems to amplify the horrible condition of my lips in the colder months. Chapsticks rarely work and many lip balms don’t last long at all- so I typically resort to slathering on the Carmex by the hour and hoping for the best. I didn’t expect much from this thick, clear balm (which does really smell like a mojito, by the way,) but I was pleasantly surprised at how non-sticky the texture was, how moisturizing it felt on my lips, and how long it lasted. Even after sipping my morning coffee and taking a few bites of a bagel- the balm didn’t budge at all.
Would I Purchase?: Maybe. $12 is a little steep for such a small tube, but this stuff does work well, and if used sparingly, could last a while. Also, the only other downside to this product was the lack of applicator. My Carmex balm has a rounded tip that glides easily over my lips for a smooth distribution of balm, whereas this tube has a flat tip which requires applying the balm with my fingertip. It’s not the end of the world, of course- but it is a minor inconvenience.
This may have been one of the most confusing samples I’ve ever received in a beauty subscription service. This teeny-tiny pencil is a fraction of the full-sized self-sharpening version, but this sample didn’t twist up- making it useful for only two, maybe three applications at the most. I can’t speak for the other shades this is available in, but “Penny” didn’t really show up at all on my lids. It was a very, very faint copper tone that may have been better suited as a highlighter instead of a shadow or an eyeliner. I was underwhelmed with this.
Would I Purchase?: No. Here’s the thing, if I had been given a little bit more of this sample, I could probably write a better evaluation (i.e.- how it works as a highlighter, as I just mentioned,) but I wasn’t impressed with the small amount I did receive. Although this product does glide on smoothly- the pigmentation isn’t all that great and it had creased and flaked off by mid-afternoon. I’ll pass.
I consider myself fortunate that fine lines and wrinkles are not a concern for me yet, but I still make a point to keep my delicate eye area as moisturized as possible. This lightweight, non-greasy cream is not just for fine lines and wrinkles, but is also supposed to decrease puffiness and dark circles, too. I used this every night before bed for a week, and while the cream absorbs quickly and left no residue or caused any kind of reaction- which is always a plus- apart from overall softness, I didn’t notice any distinct results.
Would I Purchase?: No. This cream wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t anything extraordinary, either. It did a well enough job at moisturizing my eye area, but I don’t think it’s something that I particularly need considering I get nearly the exact same results with the eye cream I’m currently using. This may be better suited for someone who has concerns with fine lines and/or dark circles as they may get more noticeable results than I did.
Product # 5: Proactiv+ Mark Fading Pads (Price unknown)
Back when I was in high school, and my skin was at the mercy of stress and teenage hormones, I went on Proactiv in a desperate attempt to clear up some stubborn, painful breakouts along my t-zone. No sooner had I started using Proactiv when I had to stop. The 3-step system actually inflamed my skin, which caused even more breakouts. I haven’t touched the stuff since. Thankfully, my skin has calmed down considerably over time, so the prospect of trying this product wasn’t completely terrifying to me. I have a couple of very faint scars on my cheek from a past allergic reaction that are easily covered with makeup, but I wanted to see if these pads could lighten them even more than time and patience already had.
I received four pads, and by the time I used the last one- the scars hadn’t faded much. My skin felt pretty nice, though- and very clean- after each use. These pads didn’t dry my skin out or cause any kind of irritation, and I think they’d make a pretty decent makeup remover for those with oily skin.
Would I Purchase? Yes! I wouldn’t be opposed to taking a box of these when I travel for easy makeup removal or just as a quick and convenient way to deeply cleanse my skin after a flight/late night/etc. I’m not sure if Proactiv sells these pads separately, or if you’d have to purchase an entire kit to get them (their website doesn’t make shopping easy,) but if I ever see any in one of those kiosks or vending machines at the mall/shopping centers- I’ll more than likely pick some up.
Overall I was very pleased with my January Ipsy bag. I may not have fallen head over heels in love with every product I received, but I did enjoy most of them and I found a couple of good ones I’d definitely purchase in the future. This bag was such an upgrade from the December one- and I’m hoping February’s is just as good.