A new year brings a new series of monthly subscription service reviews. To kick off these posts for 2015, I decided to begin with my January Ipsy bag, themed “Fresh Start.” The bag itself, a plain, kind of boring blue and white pouch that gave me a sort of clinical-vibe- came packed with mostly makeup- and only had one product in it that I didn’t use.
What I Received:
Elizabeth Mott All Over Shadow Brush (*Full Size!*)
Hikari Cosmetics Mechanical Eye Liner in “Storm” (*Full Size!*)
Probelle “Into The Blue” Nail Lacquer (*Full Size!*)
Pacifica Natural Mineral Coconut Eye Shadow in “Ethereal”
La Fresh Eco-Beauty Be Good. Good Day. Day Moisturizer
Products I Didn’t Use:
Why Not?: For Christmas last month, my mother was kind enough to purchase an entire new set of really great makeup brushes for me. For that reason, I didn’t see a point in using this one- despite it’s cute pink handle and brightly tipped synthetic bristles- and will instead be gifting it to a friend of mine who is looking to replace some of her own brushes in the coming weeks. I will say that price-wise, I think $9.99 is a steal for something that seems to be such good quality when I’ve seen other brushes like this being sold for much, much more.
I have to admit I was relieved when I first twisted up this retractable liner and saw that the color wasn’t black. I have so many black eyeliners from various subscription services over the years that to get something different- even a slate grey like “Storm”- is a breath of fresh air. After priming my lids, I gave this product a try to test it’s pigmentation and longevity- the two biggest selling points for me. The liner felt kind of hard, almost scratchy- as I applied it- not at all like the creamy pencils I’ve grown accustomed to- and it required more than one sweep to get the grey to really show up the way I wanted.
Application and poor pigmentation aside, this liner did have one saving grace- and that was it’s staying power. I wore “Storm” in the midst of a torrential downpour, oddly enough- and while some of the rain had caused my hair to frizz and some of my mascara to smudge- the liner didn’t budge at all. Sadly, that wasn’t enough for me to fall in love with it.
Would I Purchase?: No. As impressive as the longevity of this eyeliner was, the application process was a hassle and the lack of pigmentation was a let-down. I’ll stick to my Urban Decay liners and gel liners (like I usually do,) since they apply easily, show up with one stroke, and stay in place all day.
Blue nail polish seems to be THE color these days, having made appearances in my Ipsy bags and GlossyBoxes in the past. I’ve been wearing my powder blue “Provocative” Formula X lacquer from Sephora non-stop as of late, and this shade from Probelle- free of Formaldehyde- is a little bit darker but goes on just as smoothly. The photo above was after three fast drying-coats. So far, there hasn’t been any signs of chipping or peeling- so I think it’s safe to say I’m a fan!
Would I Purchase?: Yes! I don’t think I’d re-purchase “Into The Blue” again, because I already have a variety of blue-toned polishes in my collection, but I’d love to try some of Probelle’s other available colors.
Product # 3: Pacifica Natural Mineral Coconut Eye Shadow in “Ethereal” ($14 for Full Palette)
When I was reading about the formula for this Pacifica eye shadow, I was really intrigued by it’s being infused with coconut water. I don’t believe I’ve ever tried anything like that before, but I noticed right away that it certainly made a difference in the shadow’s texture- which applied almost like a cream despite being a powder. “Ethereal,” a light nude hue, felt comfortable on my lids and stayed in place all day without creasing or flaking. Pigmentation wise, the color looked pretty light with my skin tone- and might be more suitable as a highlighter, instead- but overall I was impressed.
Would I Purchase?: Yes! Sadly, I don’t believe Pacifica carries individual shades in this formula- but I don’t think I would hesitate to splurge on a palette in the future if the other included colors were half as nice as “Ethereal” was!
I’ve never heard of La Fresh or Eco-Beauty, and after receiving this moisturizer and doing a little research on the brand, I’m kicking myself for not being introduced to them or discovering them sooner. The company, which uses all-natural ingredients and is cruelty-free- has a series of products for nearly every skin concern in interesting, clever packaging. This lightweight day cream, which smelled strongly of plants (but not in a gross way,) absorbed into my skin quickly and left it feeling soft and supple without any greasy residue. After a few days of dedicated use- I noticed my face looked brighter, more even-toned, and smoother. I was pleasantly surprised!
Would I Purchase?: Yes! I wasn’t sure what to expect when I first began using this sample of day cream, but I found myself frantically squeezing the tube to get the last little drops out of it when I’d run out because I loved it so much. I am definitely purchasing a full-sized tub of this cream in the future, and might even splurge to get the matching night cream and serum (and maybe their facial masks, too!)
In conclusion, January’s Ipsy bag featured three products I loved, one I wasn’t a fan of, and one I’ll actually be gifting. While the design of the bag was a bore and it wasn’t a “five-out-of-five sample success”- overall I still enjoyed the bag very much. I found a moisturizer that gave me amazing results, a lovely blue nail polish, and a great, long-lasting shadow to use as a highlighter.
Not a bad way for Ipsy to start off the year!