Is the IPSY Beauty Boost worth the money?

Back in December of 2022 IPSY announced their new Beauty Boost Category. For $15 per month ($16.46 with all additional tax) you could get one full sized item added to your bag, I believe this was available for all tiers of the bag. While there are four months total that this subscription has been active, I could not find the Item I received for December. I will mention it, but it isn’t tin the photos.

My plan was to try out the beauty Boost for six months and then evaluate. I figured a six month check in post would do well. However IPSY recently announced the full merger of the IPSY and Boxycharm Boxes so I thought a four month check in might be helpful for those trying to decide if it is worth adding on. If you are a Boxycharm Premium Member then I believe your subscription will now be the Ipsy Glam Bag Plus (renamed Boxycharm) plus the beauty Boost. And for those of you who aren’t then this may be a chance to add it on, or avoid it if you want. According to IPSY…

Here are all the deets on Beauty Boost and how to get started: Glam Bag Plus members can opt-in to receive one additional high-delight, full-size product (worth $40+) for only $15 more a month (a guaranteed savings of 60% off or more). Basically, you get a premium, splurge-worthy pick for the cost of a few lattes. 

IPSY is usually pretty good about matching items to your profile. Mine essentially has that I like skincare as much as I like makeup. And for the Beauty Boost, IPSY has alternated between Makeup and Skincare. December I received the Kate Somerville Retinol and Vitamin C moisturizer (retail $110 for the large, I think it was a smaller size that retailed for $60 but that is from my notes, I didn’t see it on the site). I was very pleased with this selection for me. At the moment I put the moisturizer in a safe place as I was finishing up another moisturizer and now i can’t find it, which is irritating me, but it is a product i am very much looking forward to.

January was a makeup item and it was the Fenty Beauty Sun Stalk’R palette (retail $48). I am usually a little on the fence with Fenty as they are usually just okay products, but when they get it right, they really get it right. Their gloss bombs are amazing and this palette proved to be really well thought out. It has the bronzers I can use, plus shimmer shades so it isn’t just that you are using a bronzer as an eyeshadow. Technically the shimmers can be used as highlights but I wasn’t impressed with how they worked as highlighters. With the shimmers you can create a good quick look. it has proven to be a really nice addition to my collection.

With February came skin care again and this time it was with a brand that hadn’t been in IPSY before. It was Drunk Elephant. Specifically the F balm Electrolyte Water Facial masque Hydrant. (retail $54). I have not used much Drunk Elephant before. Actually the only item I used was a protini moisturizer and it was a sample size. It was fantastic though so i am very much looking forward to giving this a go. At the moment I am trying to clear out some of my sample sizes before opening full sized products. So I have to wait, but soon…soooon.

And then in March we went back to make up and my Beauty Boost this month was the Better than Chocolate Eyeshadow Palette from Too Faced. (retail: $54 although currently on sale on the site for $24). I remember the chocolate palette rom Too Faced but I don’t remember this one. It could have been around for a while though. I like too faced but I have to admit I haven’t dipped into their product releases in a while. They are coming back to mind though. I don’t know if they expanded their ads or something but I am more aware of them now than I have been for a while. I used an eyeliner from them last week and I do find myself looking at the Too Faced Palettes in my collection more. They had a bit of a slump where their quality kind of went down, but the last thing I tried from them was really good so I am hoping this is a good formula, especially as I really like the shades in this palette. It is a very me palette for right now.

As of February, IPSY did introduce a trading option in the Beauty Boost. If you don’t like the item they have selected, you can deselect it and chose one of the other items. In both February and March there were five other options to choose from if I didn’t like their selection. As the items they chose were actually what i would have chosen from the offered choices I kept the choice they made.

So after four months do I think that the beauty boost is worth it? Yes I do. I very much enjoyed the options chosen for me and I am looking forward to hopefully having that category expanded as the new joint box is created. I am hoping for really good things from the Beauty Boost. In a few months I will do a check in and we can compare the pre merge to the post to see if it is still worth it. If you are looking to add this to your subscription or if it was added by the merge I hope this helps you out with your decision making.

Unboxing the IPSY Glam Bag Plus for March 2023

For those of you who don’t know, IPSY and Boxycharm officially merged. The first merged box will be in April so this is the last of the IPSY Glam Bag Plus boxes. In the future this subscription will be called Boxycharm. Personally i find that a little confusing, I wish they had just given it a completely new name, bit I am not in charge of such things. They did rename the Glam Bag X which is quarterly. It and the Boxycharm Luxe will now be the same thing and they are calling it the Icon Box. I suppose since IPSY got to keep the regular $13 glam bag as Glam Bag they wanted Boxycharm to be represented in the merger, despite the confusion. For those of you who had Boxycharm Premium you will get the new Boxycharm Box (Currently Glam Bag Plus) plus the Beauty Boost. I do get the beauty boost, but I am going to put up a second post about that later today covering the past few months of Beauty Boost so those of you who are thinking of signing up can see what it looks like.

I figured I would post the last IPSY Glam Bag Plus so that it can stand as a marker while we watch the subscription change. I am hoping the change will be a positive one. For the past year one of the complaints I have had was that i would get some of the same items I got in IPSY that I got in Boxy. Hopefully that will be a thing of the past and I will be able to get back to unabashedly loving this subscription.

Before we look at my items, a brief bit of details. The subscription is $28 per month, This is not changing. With all of the tax and shipping I pay $32.91 each month. The beauty boos is an extra $15 (actual cost $16.46). In this box you get five full sized items. Two are chosen for you and three you get to choose from a limited selection. This month’s selection was not the greatest but I did manage to find three products that interested me. I also picked up two items in add ons that i believe were choices for other people but weren’t on my list of options. Which I am okay with. I know they have to balance the cost of the boxes and This month the spoilers I was excited for that didn’t make it to my selection were in add ons so I added them. They were the Saturday Skin Yuzu Vitamin C Sleeping Mask and the Porefessional Tight and Toned Pore Refining AHA + PHA Toning Foam. I have been wanting to try out the new skincare options from Benefit cosmetics since they were first released a month or so ago and I was tickled I could puck it up on add ons.

But now On to the Last ever Glam Bag Plus!

First we look at the two items chosen for me. The first was a set of brushes from Beauty for Real (retail $42). It is a set Five full sized brushes and they look like a really well thought out kit actually. All of them are brushes I will use. I have to say I am thrilled with the liner brush being included. I used to have one exactly like this and I used it until it fell apart. With it gone I did steadily fewer and fewer eyeliner looks so I am hoping having a new one will encourage me more. They look like they are decent quality. I will no more once i start using them, but I am looking forward to giving them a go. I haven’t had a brush set from IPSY for a while so I am pretty excited.

The second Item Ipsy chose for me this month was the Wander Beauty Island Hop Getaway Eye and face palette (retail $42). It has a row of eyeshadows a blush, a bronzer and a highlighter. I have to say all of these colors work for me as a daily kind of scheme. I love the formulas for Wander Beauty Shadows but I have never tried their face products. I live that this is the prefect travel sized palette too. I am really looking forward to trying this out.

Shall we look at the first product I chose?

The first up is the Bobbi Brown Long Wear Cream Shadow Stick in Vanilla. (retail $32). I have the champagne shimmer shade of this shadow stick and I absolutely love the formula. I was thrilled to add another one to my collection. I also adore the fact that it is matte. Almost all of the shadow sticks in subscriptions are shimmers. I know they have more pizazz, but personally i want some matte shadow sticks. I think I would use the shimmers more if I had more mattes. But maybe that is just me. I am happy to have this one and I hope to use it a lot.

The next item I chose because I found it interesting and wanted to give it a try. It is the Farsali Skintune Blur Perfecting Serum (retail $22). I think it is a primer that has a serum consistency. At least that is what I got from the description. I’ll find out more when I start to actually use the product, but it seemed interesting enough to give a go, After all I like serums and I like primers. Perhaps I will like this, sort of the skincare version of the Reese’s Peanut butter cups. I was a little disappointed that this wasn’t the full size. On the website they have two sizes. This is the smaller of the two. Technically I don’t think it is listed as a mini, but it is a bit smaller than I would have liked to have seen in this subscription.

And finally the last item I chose this month was the Selfless By Hyram Retinol and Rainbow algae Repair Serum (retail $24.50). I chose this because I always love a good retinol. I also have never heard of Rainbow algae and thought it would be interesting to learn about. I know I like products with red algae so hopefully that will work for me. I am also curious about the line as I used to watch Hyram’s skincare videos. So it will be interesting to see how his skincare turns out.

And that was my IPSY Glam Bag Plus Subscription this month. I will be covering the beauty Boost separately, for those interested. I just figured it was less confusing to keep things separate. If you are tallying up the retail value of this bag it comes to $162.50. Which is not a bad return for the bag. While I appreciate the monetary value I think it is more important to have items I will use or that i want to try out. I will certainly use the brushes and I am looking forward to taking the Wander Beauty Palette on my Near -Easter trip next month. I will play with it before then though. I’m not brave enough to travel with an untested palette. Over all, even though the selection wasn’t great (I really chose the one product that interested me in each category) I did get products that I find interesting and want to try out. I am hoping with the merger the selection will be better and that I will have fewer duplicates as there aren’t two subscriptions pulling from the same pool of products.

I have had my ups and downs with IPSY but over all I love the subscription and can’t wait to see what it becomes as we move forward.

Peach & Lily 100% Worry Free Skincare

The Daily: February 2nd, 2023

Good afternoon my darlings. Today feels just a little strange. Every time I look out the window there is a different weather pattern going on. It was raining , then it was sleeting, then it was snowing and then it was raining again. At the moment we are getting a rain sleet mix where the droplets his as they make impact with the glass of the window but melt to rain right away as though the ice was just kidding.

It is like the weather just can’t make up it’s mind today.

I did make a choice today though. No a big one, it was my IPSY Glam Bag X choice. At the moment I am doing the IPSY Beauty Boost. For $15 per month you get one extra full sized item. I think it is supposed to be worth $40-50+. I’ll have to look at the exact details. This is the third month for the boost. December was first and IPSY chose the Kate Somerville Retinol that is currently in my skincare line up. It was actually a really good choice for me. Last moth they chose the Fenty Beauty Sun Stalk R palette. I wasn’t really enthused with it as I am usually on the fence about most Fenty products. They are never bad actually they are usually just okay and pretty forgettable. I am however liking the palette much more than I thought i would and will probably get a lot of use out of it. And it was certainly something I would not have picked up on my own. I also liked that they were switching between skincare and makeup. And yes I know two times wasn’t enough to tell, so I was really curious as to what they picked.

Interestingly they did something different this month. They chose an item but then they had a section in choice where if I didn’t like what they selected then I could trade it out for one of the other items. The Item they chose for me was the Drunk Elephant F-Balm Electrolite Waterfacial which seems to be an over night mask. Since I have only tried one sample from Drunk Elephant and know nothing of most of their products (other than that everyone was raving about them a few years ago) I kept the selection they made. However I really like that they are allowing you to swap out items now as that was the one thing I wasn’t crazy about.

I actually didn’t mean to talk about IPSY so much, but I felt it was worth mentioning. I also liked the rest of the bag this month as well and I am more excited for this month’s IPSY than I have been for a while. I know it is an X month so those are always a bit over the top, but last month’s box was really good as well so thus far they are really hitting 2023 strong.

This is the year I am really reevaluating all of my subscription boxes to see what I really want to keep. I am even trying a few new ones out to see what combination of products I like and what I am willing to let go. I actually signed up for the Cohorted Subscription box. February will be my first one. It will be interesting to see if it is worth it. and since it is a new subscription I’ll probably go ahead and do a full post here instead of just posting the box on IG. Anyway, enough with the subscriptions, lets move on to what I used today…

Today’s Look:

Primer: Tatcha Liquid Silk Canvas Primer

Foundation: KVD Vegan Beauty Good Apple Balm Foundation

Bronzer: Milk Makeup Bronzing Stick (from the use up box)

Blush: Cotton Candy Champagne Blushlighter palette from Beauty Bakerie

Currently Beauty Bakerie is having a massive sale up to 40% off for the next two days. the product links will take you to the site.

Eyeshadow: Urban Decay Naked Honey Palette

Mascara: Benefit Cosmetics They’re real magnetic Mascara

Lips: Beauty Bakerie Liquid Lip Whip and Illamasqua Lip Liner

Today I started with the Tatcha Liquid primer. I really enjoy it. It is one of my top primers. I still love the balm formula of Tatcha just a little bit more, but then I just really love Balm style primers. This is a really good primer and on the skin it feels a lot like the balm version a you put it on. I wanted a primer that I know and love when I started playing with the KVD foundation so that is why i chose it.

This Good Apple foundation is interesting. It has been a while since I used a foundation that oxidizes. This one does. It looks a little light on me when I apply it, but after a little while (an hour or so) it oxidizes and then looks like it is the right shade for me. It isn’t a perfect shade match, but it does okay. I think I notice it more because I have gotten really lucky with shade matches recently. It makes the not quite shade stand out more to me. while this foundation looks good on most of my face after a little while I really start to notice it settling into fine lines. I had a phone conversation about an hour after I applied the makeup. the conversation lasted about 20 minutes. When I was done I had to use the restroom and I looked in the mirror and I could really see it settling around my mouth and emphasizing the lines. it is something I am going to have to watch.

The Milk Makeup Bronzer is from my use up box. It is a sample and I want to purchase the full size but won’t until I use up the sample. I am trying to use one item from the box each day so this was my choice today. it is an easy choice since I really like it.

I also really like the Beauty Bakerie blush in the Blushlighter palette. Oddly it has enough shimmer for me that I don’t really want to reach for the highlighters. i like the highlighters, and i will use them with other blushes, but just the blush from this palette was good for me. I also couldn’t resist the Beauty Bakerie Lip Whip. If you are looking for liquid lips that dry down enough not to leave lip prints everywhere but not so much as to dry out your lips then i would suggest checking out the line. I did use the Illamasqua lip liner to smooth out the edges but that was mostly because I noticed a not so smooth bit after the lippie dried. It was just easier to correct with lip liner and I really like the Illamasqua formula. I also like that the color blended well.

My shadow was from the Naked Honey palette. I love this palette. it applies well, blends well and looks good. I think the trick with Urban Decay is to find whichever palette they offer that suits you and go with that. I loved their original Naked palettes but a lot of their others just don’t have a color story that appeals to me. Admittedly I may still pick up their Prince palette. On the other hand I have a friend who adores their Cyber palette and doesn’t like anything else. I think once you find the palette from them you like, it is a great palette to use. Mine happens to be the Naked Honey. I can wear the brown tones every day and I have a weakness for the bronze shimmers.

And so i used the palette today.

and that my darlings is me today. Over all it is a quiet one. Phone calls and e-mails but mostly just me and the computer at my desk. There is a whole lot of editing going on. nd now, I must get back to it. Have a great afternoon.


The Daily: January 11th, 2023

Good afternoon my darlings. Today there has been no sun and the air is chilly. while this morning started with coffee instead of switching to water when it was done I found myself switching to tea. Actually today I went for the Macha from the Art of Tea. It was one of the teas in the sampler pack that I tried in November and December and I ended up buying the full sized pack. It is one of the better Matchas I have tried and I am really enjoying it. Plus I just needed something warm but not as caffeinated as coffee.

Even though it is warm inside the house, there is just something about a cold gray day in winter that just calls out for a hot beverage. Today, Mine was Matcha.

I did manage a short walk today which was nice. I ended up walking with one eye looking at the sky though. It is cloudy but doesn’t feel like rain, however those clouds kind of looked like it. I made if back still dry, but I don’t think I am going to push ,my luck with a second walk. I’m tempted because a nice leg stretch with a breath of fresh air is awfully tempting. I just don’t trust that sky and don’t want to be cold and soaked. Cold I can handle, but not while dripping wet.

But I do feel good for having gotten in that one walk. So to the makeup!

Today’ Look:

Primer: Stila One Step Color Correcting and brightening Primer

Foundation: Good Apple Cream foundation from KVD Beauty

Bronzer/Highlight: Sun Stalk R palette from Fenty Beauty

Blush: Kaleido Cosmetics Skin Luminate Blush Palette

Eyeshadow: Mischo Beauty Eyeshadow Palette

Mascara: Iconic London Triple Threat Mascara

Lips: Mischo Sheer Lip Shine In Madam

Earrings: Shop Miss A Jewelry

In case you hadn’t guessed, My Ipsy Bag came in today. There is a post on Instagram if you want to see the whole bag. As I’m trying to sort out which subscriptions to keep and which to let go I am posting the bags there instead of writing full reviews for a while. That may change, but I’m going to try this for January.

Anyway, this month’s bag was heavily makeup. The only thing that wasn’t makeup was a makeup remover actually. So I decided to tryout the new to me today. I just couldn’t resist. Actually the primer and the lip are the only items not from this month’s Ipsy bag.

To start with the primer I went with the Stila today. It is a good primer but only minor color correcting. I chose it mostly because it was slightly hydrating and from what I have heard about the KVD foundation it can be a bit drying.

The KVD Good Apple foundation balm is one I have been wanting to get my hands on for a while now. Every time I went to look for it, it was either sold out completely or just my shade was gone. So seeing it in an IPSY in my shade was fabulous. I applied it with a sponge and then smoothed out the whole with a brush. A little goes a really long way. I would not start with a brush as that would pick up too much foundation. Start with a damp makeup sponge. It blends well and sits beautifully over the face. It is settling in some of the fine lines around my mouth so i think a pore filling primer is called for. It also feels a little dry on the skin. While I was willing to use a moisturizing primer, I did skip the Embryolisse as my pre makeup base. I think tomorrow I will definitely use that since I think the extra moisture is going to come in handy. This formula does oxidize a bit. I am currently half a shade darker than when I applied it. i am still in my range though so I am okay with that, it is something to note when you pick a shade. I don’t know if it will get darker throughout the day, but that is something I will test for. Over all, despite the slight dryness, it feels amazing on the skin.

The Fenty Beauty Palette is meant for face and eyes. It has two shimmer shades, I used the bronze as a highlight today. I think it is meant as a shimmer shadow. It doesn’t really work as a highlight. So perhaps tomorrow I will try that out. In case you ae wondering Ipsy is doing a beauty boost. You pay an extra $15 per month and they give you one extra full sized item. I believe the value is supposed to be over $65. But I’ll have to check on that. December was the first month they did that and it was a heavily skin care bag, the Boost Item was from Kate Somerville (which I am currently using in the line up) and this month in a heavy makeup bag it is the Fenty Beauty Palette. I am actually quite happy with it. The palette itself is rather hard to get open so packaging needs a bit of a rethink. maybe an indentation for gripping so I don’t break a fingernail. The products were nice to use today,. The range is nice and I like that there are two shimmers. The formula of the bronzer was buildable. The shimmer though I think is more a shadow than a highlight.

This blush palette has three blushes. They are highly pigmented so tread lightly during application. As bright as the one I am wearing looks today, it is the darkest tone in the palette. I tend to drift towards the darker blushes. I will dry them all though. I liked the way the blush turned out but I am not sure how many pans in this trio I will end up using.

The Mischo Eyeshadow Palette was interesting. The Pink shade is a fantastic one and done shade, but I wanted to see how the shadows worked together. The dark brown was the only one I had problems with. It didn’t want to blend like the others and just wanted to stay where i put the shadow down. All of the other shades blended well though. I think this is one of those palettes where the dark brown shade is used more like an eyeliner and the rest of the shades are blended as shadows. I didn’t use all of the shades but other than the on-blending brown, it worked well.

And finally, because I have it and like it I picked out the Mischo lip gloss. It is an easy shade that I really like wearing in the summer for a light wash of color. It isn;t really something I gravitate towards in the winter, but today I figured why not. It is a decent low tint lip gloss and as such it works well. It is better adapted to more natural looks and I usually pair it with my BB creams. It is a little slimy, but it is a lip gloss.

the earrings just felt right today as well. This came as a trio of earrings in a Shop Miss A pack. I actually bout the trio for the studs but I really like these hoops. They are of much better quality than I thought they would be for a dollar. And they give me far more than a dollar’s worth of enjoyment. So I am happy.

And that my darlings is me, and most of my January Ipsy bag actually. I enjoyed using the products and I look forward to testing them out further. But for now, it is back to work for me.

IPSY Glam Bag Plus Unboxing, December 2021

IPSY, Oh IPSY. This month I was very much looking forward to my Glam Bag plus. On choice day I looked over the products they chose and for the first time in a long time there were products in each category of choice that I wanted, so I was really happy with the selection of products. And then my bag arrived with a product missing. So I now have to go through their IPSY Care system.

It’s not a major deal as I’m sure it will be settled one way or another, but it is always annoying to have to go through the care Bots and convince them to leave a message for a person who will hopefully later get back to you.

The product missing this month was the Aceology Brightening Treatment mask. I’ve tried the trial size of this mask and really liked it so I was looking forward to having the full size. Hopefully they will still have it in stock and send it along.

Despite this disappointment I am still pretty happy with my box this month.

The first item I pulled out of the box was the Shaina B Miami Nights eyeshadow Palette. This is definitely a me palette. It has rosy tones and it has the addition of a stunning silver shade. In general I like Shaina B eyeshadows so I am very much looking forward to playing around with this palette.

The second item I pulled out of my bag was another makeup item and it was the Rodial Glass Primer. I am always happy to give a new primer a try. Rodial is a hit or miss brand with me but what I do like from them I really like so hopefully this will fall into that category. Either way I am happy to give it a try and it was nice to see two makeup items in this month’s box.

The third item is a set of nail polishes from Complex culture. They are called Thrive and dream. One is a kind of mid-century modern green and the other is a green toned gold. Since Complex Culture is an IPSY owned brand we have seen several products from them before, but I haven’t tried their nail polishes. I actually chose this set because they aren’t colors I have in my collection. The Gold I have a version of but it is an extremely old nail polish from Revlon that I just can’t give up. If this gold performs well and is similar in tone to the ancient Revlon one I might be able to convince myself to let it go. So here’s hoping.

This month I also received the Kate Somerville ExfoliKate Glow Moisturizer. I have not tried this moisturizer (and always love trying new moisturizers) I have also always had good luck with Kate Somerville. I really love the Exfoliator and in fact it was an add on this month so I have it as well. And the Cleanser from the same line was available in the Boxy Charm Drop shop (which I think is still open if you are shopping) this month so I have that coming as well. Sometime soon I may have A Kate Somerville heavy skincare line up. Which I may not have really planned, but I can’t say I am mad about.

So that was my IPSY Glam Bag Plus for December. Am I still annoyed by the missing mask? Yes. And am I still happy with the bag this month? Yes. This was a very good month. I will use every item and I am in fact looking forward to using every item that was in my bag. The only reason that the missing item was such a bummer was that I was looking forward to using it as well. All in all though, this was a very good Ipsy Month. And I am sure that at some point the missing item will be sent my way. And then I will have another mask to use.

The IPSY Glam Bag X November 2021 Unboxing

Good morning and look what arrived on my doorstep! It was kind of a surprise actually as I never received a tracking e-mail of any sort. Plus the Postman seemed to have approached the door on little cat’s feet, sneaking up to the door, dropping off the package and racing away before anyone knew he was there. I almost tripped over the box when I opened the door. I think we have a ‘holiday mailman’ right now as our usual one always knocks when leaving a package, even if he doesn’t wait for an answer.

No knock this time.

This month was the IPSY Glam Bag X. The X for this month was Huda Katan. It was an interesting mix of products. The X months are quarterly and instead of the normal $30 price it is $60. This is the first year that they have done the X and this is the fourth quarter of the year so I’ve had one full year of the subscription to decide if I want to keep it. The First one was excellent, the second one was barely so so and the third one was really good. Before I make my decision on the subscription (which I will make in December) let’s see what November holds. Honestly its hard to tell.

The first item out of the box this month it the PMD BEAUTY Clean Smart Facial Cleansing Device in Warmth (retail $99, although the site has a 40% off with code FRIENDS40 – I saw the code when I picked up the link and have no association with PMD). I actually have one of these and I really like it. Mine is getting a bit worn out so I was contemplating getting another vibrating facial tool. I like the silicone covered ones and actually I was looking at the Foreo. Partially because they are having a large sale right now and partially because I kind of like them better. I’ve been eyeing several of their tools for a while now and will probably still go for the UFO masking tool. Especially now that I have the new PMD cleansing tool. I can pick up the UFO tool and not worry that I need to replace the cleansing tool. So for me it was actually quite timely.

The second item is the HUDA BEAUTY Glow Coco Hydrating Mist ($35). I’ll admit, the first thing I thought was that it was going to smell like coconut. But I don’t think coco is short for coconut. I don’t think it is short for cocoa either. It has a somewhat perfume-y scent. The spray is a very fine mist which I like and I really don’t mind the scent too much. However it is one of those sprays that when I use it on my face I have to curl my lips in first because it actually tastes like perfume. It will be interesting to see how it performs. Not my favorite, but I do like the spray. Perhaps it will wow me.

The CÉLA Masque De Glacier Clay Mask (retail $40) was the third item chosen for me. I am perfectly fine with this as I love masks and I really like the brand Cela. I’ve had several hand creams and body lotions from them before and they always feel fantastic on the skin. I haven’t tried any face products but I do love clay masks. So I’m pretty happy with this.

The fourth item that Ipsy chose for me was the RARE BEAUTY With Gratitude, Dewy Lip Balm in Honor (retail $16). It is a clear lip balm. There is no scent to it and it has a nice case. Would I have chosen it? No. But I haven’t tried anything from Rare Beauty before so it is nice to try something from a brand not usually featured. I am pretty well stocked on clear lip balms at the moment so it isn’t all that exciting, but I will at least get to try the formula.

The next three Items I did get to choose from a selection of items. The selection was okay. Not fabulous, but not absolutely awful either. There have been some months this year where it was clear there were some shipping issues. This was not one of those months. They had a decent selection for each category. So what did I choose from the list?

I chose the WISHFUL Thirst Trap Juice HA3 Peptide Serum (retail $47). I have been wanting to try this serum for a while now so I was thrilled it was actually part of the selections. I’m actually thinking of rolling it into my routine right away as I really miss having a hyaluronic acid serum in the line up. Lately I have been using a lot of brightening products. I like the vitamin c products, but I really miss my hyaluronic acid.

The ACEOLOGY Firming Treatment Mask (retail $69) was the next item I chose. I just finished a different mask from this line and I have a sample of at least two others. While I am generally not a huge fan of peel off masks, the Aceology ones have started to win me over. I’ve enjoyed the ones I’ve tried and am happy to have a full size of another. And I am kind og glad it is the firming one. The other two I tried were the Lifting and the Brightening ones. They both worked really well so that gives me high hopes for the Firming mask. I may have to use it this week to see how well it performs.

OFRA COSMETICS Sitting Pretty Midi Palette (retail $35) was one of my options so I chose it. I like Ofra products in general, but the large highlighters and blushes take up a log of space when traveling and to be honest, I am never going to make it through one of those large highlighters. The small golden one in this palette is the perfect shade for me and I know I will wear it. I also like the travel size of the palette. And I have a larger palette from Ofra where the pans are all the same size so it will be easy to mix and match since the products all pop out of the palette. Having a reusable travel palette that fits the smaller Ofra Pans I have is always a good thing. Plus they are good products in general. And it is really nice to see makeup making a reappearance in the IPSY bags.

And finally, my last selection was the PATRICK TA BEAUTY Major Glow Softening Lip Masque in She’s Juicy (retail $22). I know, I am still working through the Laneige lip mask (and lusting after the holiday Gingerbread scented one), but I plan to keep this one on my desk to use throughout the day. And yes I know I kind of complained about the clear lip balm, but I really like the look of the container and it smells of delicious vanilla. Plus my desk lip balms keep getting knocked over and rolling under stacks of paperwork. Or hiding in desk shadows. Or simply getting knocked off the desk and disappearing into neverland. Personally, I think Tinkerbell may be stealing them. I like the square container that will stay where I put it. It won’t roll anywhere and maybe I’ll catch Tinkerbell or her minions in the act if they attempt to pilfer it.

And it is really pretty. Gold and frosted glass.

So that was my IPSY Glam Bag X for November. All in all it was a pretty good bag. Were there a couple of items I may not be too thrilled by? Yes. However even though I am not thrilled, I will still use them. A clear lip balm, unless it is super slimy, will almost always get used and As long as I tuck my lips in so that I don’t have to taste the perfume, I have no objections to the scent of the Huda Beauty Hydrating Mist. It is a pretty good month over all. Which means that of the four Glam Bag X boxes this year, only one was not great. The others were well worth the extra money. It will make this an interesting though process when I sit down to have my personal discussion with myself about next year’s subscriptions. There are several new ones I want to try, some not even beauty products related. I think that as my stockpile of subscription box skincare has grown, my desire to branch out has as well. So it will be an interesting sit down this year to see who stays and who goes. But for now, I am very happy with this month’s IPSY. It met my profile, had a decent selection in the choice categories and gave me products that I am happy to try out and I feel are well worth the value of the box. November was a good month for IPSY.

In case you were wondering about what I was talking about with the UFO Masking tool, I’ve posted links below. It just looks like so much fun to play around with. But hey, when do I not like masking…well anything. Also Foreo just launched an Imagination DIY Face Mask. I’m not sure how that works, but it is something i will definitely be looking into.

UFO 2 and UFO 2 mini by FOREO

Ipsy Glam Bag Plus October 2021 Unboxing

Oh my darlings, my IPSY bag arrived in the mail. Can you believe it? I can’t remember the last time my IPSY subscription arrived this early in the month. It is a Halloween miracle.

So shall we see what’s in the pretty pink mailer?

First off we have the bag for the month. I like the print. i think it is very appropriate for the month. I also wish it was on an actual makeup bag. I’ve mentioned my disappointment in the drawstring bags already. i think it feels more objectionable this month since I not only like the print but IPSY’s price went up. This Glam Bag Plus is now $28 per month ($30.73 with Tax). I know it is because postage and product prices have gone up, and I do understand that, but it does make the bag feel extra cheap.

But let’s face it, I am never really going to like the draw string bags.

And it really isn’t about the bag anyway. So lets get into the products.

The first item out of my bag I really can not complain about. The Dermelect Self Esteem Beauty Sleep serum is always going to be welcome at my house. I know it can be used all over my face, but quite frankly when I get this serum, I mostly use it on my neck. It has made it into my skin care line up many times in the past and will continue circling through the line up. I finished my most recent bottle a few months ago and have it on my to be repurchased list. Now it is here again and i don’t have to repurchase it. So we are off to a good start this month.

The second item in my bag this month is also welcome. It is the Wander Beauty Staycation Hydrating Mask. I had a sample size of this not too terribly long ago and really enjoyed it. It is very hydrating though so for me this is actually quite timely. It is the kind of mask I can use in the winter but can’t really use in the summertime. As it is October and the weather is sort of on the turn, soon I will be leaning into my hydrating masks. Since I enjoyed the sample i used, i am happy to try the full size out.

The third item that was chosen for my by IPSY this month was also the one makeup item in my bag. It is the Roen Cake Lash mascara. Oddly enough I have managed to blaze through a large number of my stockpiled mascaras. For a while it felt as though I was drowning in them. I even had a separate mascara stash. Now the few mascaras I have that are unopened have been mixed in with my other unopened products and no longer need their own drawer. To be honest i was hoping to whittle them down enough so that I can try out the My Little Mascara Club. I’ll probably still try the subscription out soon, but until then I have another mascara to try and as my stockpile is down, I’m not mad about receiving this. The lip gloss from Roen is the only item I’ve tried from the brand so i am happy to see what their other products are like. I won’t open it though until I am ready to use it. The wand on the website looks pretty good though.

I’m also happy there was at least one makeup item this month.

The next two items are items that I chose. The choose selection was pretty poor this month, but I was actually pleased to see these two items. The fist is the Murad Skin Smoothing Polish. You know I love a good exfoliator and Murad is a skin care brand that I trust. I am currently using the Annmarie Skincare Kaolin Clay Exfoliator but it will soon be used up and I am happy to have another exfoliator on standby.

Finally we get to the Tokyomilk French Kiss Perfume. I was very happy to see this as I am a fan of the Brand. one of my favorite winter perfumes is #85 Novacaine from Tokyomilk Dark. That one is both a winter scent and a night time scent. From the first sniff this seems like it would be more of a day time scent. I am actually looking forward to trying it out. (Also on the add ons I ordered another perfume from the Tokyomilk brand and I’ll be trying that one out as well).

There is one thing that concerns me a bit with the perfume though. It is a bit on the small side. I have it next to the regular sized bottle that i ordered from the brand. It is significantly larger than the bottle that came from IPSY. While I am happy with the size for a perfume the comparison does bother me a little since IPSY PLUS is supposed to be full sized items. It is possible that the bottle sizes for the brand have changed as I have had my bottle for a little while.

Size issues aside I am very happy with my bag for this month. It is heavy on the skincare which is slightly disappointing, but all of the items are ones that I will use. So I am actually quite happy. I do hope that next month leans a little more towards the makeup side of things, but really this is one of the better plus bags that they have sent in a while. It makes me very happy. It also makes my decision on what subscriptions to keep in the new year and which to let go a bit more difficult.

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Unboxing the IPSY Glam Bag Plus for July 2021

That’s right my darlings, today we continue the theme of the week of subscriptions. To be honest, I didn’t think IPSY would arrive this week. I received a tracking number towards the beginning of the month (July 10th) and it never updated. At least until yesterday morning when suddenly it changed to Delivery today by 9pm.

For those who do not know, IPSY Glam Bag Plus is a $25 per month subscription. Inside you receive fife full sized products. They used to come with a makeup bag, now they come with a cheap drawstring bag. July’s drawstring bag seems to be slightly better quality than many in the past so either they’ve upgraded or this one just happened to be nicer. Either way I don’t consider the bag as adding any value to the subscription so the less said about it the better.

Let’s move on to the products, shall we?

As for the products, IPSY chooses two and you are allowed to choose the remaining three products from a limited selection of items. Each choice option has about five or six options to choose from. Some months it is a hard choice, other months, not so much. This mont was not great but not really bad either. I felt like I had options and I did get to choose the one I prefered not as the best of a bad lot, but as options I actually preferred.

Let’s look at the two choices chosen for my by IPSY. The first was from Dr. Brandt Skincare and it is the pores no more® PORE PURIFYING CLEANSER (retail $36). I’ll admit, my thoughts are split on this. I like Dr. Brandt products actually and have used several of them. I have never actually received this cleanser so I am looking forward to trying it out. However this particular product has made the rotations for quite a while now. I;ve seen it appear as options in bags numerous times so it sort of feels like a remainder. I like it, but it still feels like a left over.

The second item chosen for me I am actually excited to try. it is the Juice Beauty SPF 30 Oil-Free Moisturizer (retail $30). I have tried several products from Juice Beauty and really liked them. There was a serum a while back that I loved and was very sad when it ran out. The only item I think I’ve tried from the brand that i didn’t like was the bar of soap and I think that is mostly because I don’t care for bars of soap in the shower and not because the product was bad. So I am happy with seeing this moisturizer in my bag.

The first of the items I choose I was very happy to see as it is one that I have thought about adding to my shopping cart numerous times. The only reason I hadn’t actually pulled the trigger on it was because I am trying to whittle down my masks and not buy any until they are a respectable number. (I actually have a lot of small sample sized mask tubes I’m trying to clear out.) But here this mask was as an option so I snapped it up. It is the Go-to-Skincare The Removalist Mask (retail $36). I know it is a detoxifying clay mask. of course I am going to want to try it. What can I say, clay masks are a weakness.

I’m sure I could have worse ones.

The second item I chose was the DR. EVE_RYOUTH Vitamin C + Hyaluronic Acid Hydrabright Night (retail $90). You know i love night creams. I know a lot of the time I use my regular moisturizer and when it needs a little help I roll in a night mask to help out the moisturizer. But truthfully, I really like having a seperate night moisturizer. I’m not entirely certain why. I don’t have a problem using serums in both the morning and the night, or essences, or toners or cleansers, but something about moisturizers. I really like having a seperate one for night time use. I;ve found a few I like well enough, but I haven’t found one that I find super fabulous. Honestly, I have never heard of this brand before, but I do love Vitamin C and Hyaluronic Acid. so hopefully this will prove useful.

And finally I chose one makeup item from the choice items and it is the Beauty for Real Golden Hour Mango Butter Eyeshadow Palette (retail $36). I have tried a few Beauty for Real products, although not many. I am still trying to decide how i feel about the brand. Their mascara was absolutely fabulous. I remember thinking it wasn’t going to be because it had a small dinky little wand, but once applied I used every single drop and was very sad when it came time for the mascara to depart. The other products I tried from the brand were more or less forgettable. So I chose the palette to see which category it fell into. Also in all of my categories it was the only makeup item.

so that was my July 2021 IPSY Glam Bag Plus. Again I have mixed thoughts about it. I like the products and i am looking forward to trying them out, however once again it was heavily weighted towards skincare. I like skin care. Dare i say I even love skincare. However for a while now there has been a lot of skincare. It would be nice if they would just lean towards makeup a bit more. At least until I can use up a few more products. At this point in my beauty profile I have every makeup item possible checked and listed as send me frequently, so it should help with the product selection. Hopefully. And really I can’t be mad at this bag. I am interested to try all of the products I received and it is a good selection. I think I am just facing a little skincare burn out. Otherwise, IPSY was better this month than it is been in the past few months so I am hoping this is an upward trend.

Next month Is a Glam X month so my glam bag plus will be upgraded for the quarterly box. This is the third one they’ve done. Each quarter the Glam Bag X is a collaboration with someone. The first was Patrick Ta and it was fantastic. The second was with Khloe Kardashian and it was not good at all. In fact I felt a little cheated for paying the upgraded price for that month. This third Glam X is a collaboration with Halsey. I have my fingers crossed. Since it is new I am giving it a full year before I make my final judgement call on whether or not i want to keep it. In fact each year in November and December I review all of my subscriptions to see which ones I will be keeping in the following year. Usually there are a set few that stay and others that are evaluated. Usually Boxy and IPSY are the two pillars that remain, this year I am going to have to have a good hard think about both of them. But for now, I have products I enjoy so July was a decent month.

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Refreshments Unboxing

My first Refreshments Bag

A few months ago IPSY started a side subscription called Refreshments. The Refreshments bag is designed to ship your bathroom essentials to you every month.  The bag ships with your Glam Bag, this reducing shipping costs.  The first bag was free so I signed up for it.  The price varies based on what you order from their listed items.  You can sign up to receive the same items each month or vary it based on your needs. You can even skip it that month entirely if you are well stocked on product. I actually really like the flexibility of the system.

The first complementary bag came with face wipes and hand cream.  It has been at least three years since I have bought face wipes.  While I really like having them on hand and I really like using them, I don’t like the waste of them so I weened myself off of them . 

Since I couldn’t alter the items in the first free bag, I now have a set of facial wipes.  I will use them, but I have already logged into my Refreshments account and taken them off my recurring purchases list.  So I have just this set and no more.

That being said, the wipes are clean smelling with very little scent attached to them.  I used one of them to remove the lipstick swatch from the About Face liquid lipstick. It is a very dark color so I figured it was a pretty good test. 

swatched lipstick

It worked tolerably well.  It left a little pink behind on the skin of my hand and I did have to rub quite hard to get the lipstick off.  I think with regular makeup it will be fine.  It just wasn’t happy about the dark color.

The wipes are not dripping with liquid which was nice.  They were slightly on the dry side which leads me to believe they won’t last a long time.  Are they the best wipes I’ve used?  No, but I wouldn’t be ordering them even if they were.

removed swatch with some residue left behind

Knowing I have used better wipes just means there will be no regret for not receiving them again.  I will say that I had a lot of regret when I used my last AYAM Dead Sea Minerals with Vitamin C infused Makeup remover wipes. They were amazing and it felt like an actual sacrifice not to order a new pack as soon as the last one ran out.

The second item in my free bag was the Luscious Hand Cream in the scent Citrus Spritz. It has a nice scent to it and is thick enough to ward off chapped hands after excess washing and sanitizing.  I really like this cream.  I’m not entirely certain I need a new tube of it every month, but it is a nice cream and I will use it. 


The two items came in a satin like draw string bag, similar to the Ipsy Glam Bag Plus, although to be honest, it is of better quality than last months’ drawstring bag for the Plus subscription tier.  It will go into the drawer with the others and when next I travel it will be used for either underwear or jewelry.

With this tier the products are supposed to arrive by the middle of the month and you have the opportunity to change things around as long as you do it before the end of the month. Each month they are adding new items.  They started small and are slowly increasing the number of products. 

Next month, I am signed up to receive a razor from them. The first razor comes with two sets of blades and a handle and subsequent razor purchases just have the two pack of blades to go with the reusable handle.  As the blades each month are $5 and two sets of blades are pretty much what I go through each month, if this works out, it will be the cheapest shaving subscription I’ve tried and the easiest to refill as it would just come tucked into my Ipsy Box.  So I have my fingers crossed. I’m sure at some point I will try some of their other products as well. 

I won’t be ordering the Cleansing wipes, but I will probably pick up another tube of the Luscious Hand cream as I really like the scent and the formula.  It like the other products, have a decent price as well with every item available thus far ranging from $5 – $11. This could be a very nice subscription in the long run.  To be honest, if the razors work out, it may end my shaving subscription quest, regardless of any other products. Over all, I am glad I looked into the Refreshments subscription.

IPSY Glam Bag February 2021 Unboxing

Through snow, ice and winter winds, my Ipsy Glam Bag did fly, finally arriving on my doorstep. This is of course the $12 IPSY glam bag.  I am still awaiting the arrival of the first Glam Bag X. This Glam Bag featured five sample sized products. 

The reason I signed up for the regular IPSY Glam bag was actually for this month’s bag.  I liked the little envelope style clutch, red faux leather with a gold lip clasp.  I thought it was cute.  I also thought it would make a cute clutch, until I saw the back.

  While the back of the bag is cute with the letter look stamped on the back, it does make the bag less versatile.  I actually chose the larger version of this bag for my Glam Bag X without realizing that it had the same back design.  While cute on the small one, I’m not so sure about the larger version.  The design is stamped on and not integrated into the material so I may actually use some nail polish remover and see if it will come off.  But that is a craft project for another day (although I will post it in one of my upcoming daily posts.

While I do enjoy the bag, it is what is inside that counts and of course what will let me decide if I plan to keep this subscription or let it go to try something new.

The first item I took out of my bag was the item I chose.  It is the Amore Pacific Treatment Enzyme Peel Daily Cleansing powder. I absolutely adore Amore Pacific.  I’ve tried two creams from them and loved both of them. I am very excited to try the cleanser.  I have to say I do like that it is a powder.  It means there is more product in the bottle without added water.  One of my favorite masks from AnnMarie Skincare (the Purifying Mud Mask) is the same way.  It makes it shelf stable for longer and it makes the product last longer. It makes it fantastic to keep around, and why I always keep the Purifying Mud Mask around (well that and it is a fantastic mask).  I can’t wait to try this one out. 

The next item in my bag was the Farah Flat Foundation brush.  I have been looking for a good flat foundation brush so I may give this a test this week to see how it works out for me.  The IPSY Glam Bag arrived this weekend and so I chose several different foundations for my weekly makeup bag in order to give the brush a good trial.  I’ve had some really good brushes from Farah and some not so great ones so it will be interesting to see where this lands.

Following the foundation brush was the NEOGEN Dermalogy Probiotics Youth Repair Cream. Currently I have an essence from NEOGEN in my skin care routine for testing and will soon have used it a month (I think I have another week and a half on the trial).  I also have a larger NEOGEN cream of a different variety to try out.  As prior to these products I hadn’t heard of the brand, I am happy to have several items from them to try out.

As always I love getting any sort of powder so I was pleased to see the Lottie London Ready Set Go Loose Setting powder in my Glam Bag this month. I’ve never tried anything from Lottie London that I can recall and if there is one product I will always go through it is powder.  Whether pressed of loose even if I wear no other makeup, I always add a layer of powder over my moisturizer. I love a freshly moisturized face, I just don’t like the shine. So even on no makeup days I use powder. It is always nice to try a new one.

And finally there is the Design Me Gloss Me Hair Oil.  It is designed to smooth down hair.  I remember trying something from this brand a while back and I recall liking it, but I can’t recall what the product was.  I look forward to giving the brand another try.

Additionally I did add on a pack of hair scrunchies from the brand Kit-sch Beauty. They were a three dollar add on and while they are nice and pull my hair back without pulling it out, they do feel a little on the cheap side. I suspect I will use them for a while but not have them last a terribly long time. They don’t have the feel of something that will last a long time. I could be proven wrong, I often am actually. However as a three dollar add on, I am very pleased with them, no matter how long they last. I actually really like IPSYs add on section. I love that it is very simple divided into sections by price and that many of the items you didn’t get in the bag are options.It is very neatly organized and I have to admit, I almost always find something to add on each month.

Over all I have to say I am fairly pleased with my bag this month.  It is a surprisingly good mix of products.  I am very excited for the item I chose and really hope that Amore Pacific appears more regularly.  I will take any size they feel like sending sample or otherwise from the brand.  I also have a few new to me brands/products  that I get to try out as well, which is one of the reasons I get this subscription box.  Quite frankly I have to say that I am happy to keep the IPSY Glam Bag another month to see what they come up with next month.  If it remains a good mix, I just may have to hang on to this subscription.

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