Unboxing the April 2021 Ipsy Glam Bag Plus

IPSY, oh IPSY.  This was not your month. With the IPSY Glam Bag Plus the cost is $25 and you get five full sized items.  Two are picked for you and three you get to choose.  The subscription tier comes with a drawstring bag instead of a makeup bag.  In my opinion it is not really worth mentioning. So that is all I will say about it.

So we are going to jump into the products.  We’ll start with the items IPSY chose for me.  The first item was a set of Beau Gachis eyeshadow Brushes.  Now this is nothing against the brand.  I actually have several of their brushes already in my collection.  They are nice brushes.  Quite sturdy and durable. Work well with pigments. 

However, last month IPSY chose a set of eyeshadow brushes for my box. And in one of the tiers where I could choose an item the only item I hadn’t received in that column was a set of eyeshadow brushes.  So last month I received two sets of eyeshadow brushes and this month I get another set.  One set has already made it to my mom who wanted new eyeshadow brushes so I’m good, but still. I like brushes and in fact could use a few new face brushes.  I’m pretty set on shadow brushes at the moment.

When I first saw the line up on April 2nd I sent them a message and the reply essentially told me that I needed to check my beauty profile. The message made it sound more or less like them choosing eyeshadow brushes for me two months in a row was somehow my fault.

Which I didn’t appreciate.

It made me feel quite a bit salty in fact.

The brushes are fine though.  I will either eventually use them or the set will end up in a Christmas stocking. It isn’t like brushes expire, so I’m essentially fine with that.  I was just annoyed by the e-mail exchange.

On a happier note, the second item they chose for me was the Pixi by Petra Flawless Beauty Primer.  You know I love Primers and I have tried several items from Pixi that I like.  However I tend to stick to their skincare. 

I really like their Clarity Toner. I’ve gone through two bottles and it is on my list to repurchase once I work through the few toners I have in my collection. I had to deliberately not repurchase it while I work through some other products. I also have an eyeshadow duo from them that I like (but tend to forget about and need to use more). I am pleased to try some more makeup products from the brand.

Now we get into the three items I chose. The selection wasn’t as poor as it was last month.  I didn’t have any problems choosing.  There was no agonizing over options.  Each tier had one product that I was like, ‘Yeah, that’ll do.’ I chose nice products that I will use and am looking forward to trying out, but usually there is a bit of a choice debate and often I will go into the add ons and purchase one of the items I didn’t choose when I had to make my decision.  That wasn’t an issue this month.  I didn’t buy any add ons and my selection was easy.

I chose the Nue Co’s The Pill All in 1 Serum.  It is a serum that runs heavily to hyaluronic acid which my skin loves.  At the moment I am using the Vitamin C Powder from The Nue Co and I Am really liking it, so I have high hopes for this this serum and look forward to testing it out.

I did also get a second serum.  It is the Vitabrid C12 Vitamin C Dual Drop Serum.  I have a cleanser from Vitabrid in my to try drawer and I thought a serum to go with it would at least give me two things from the brand to try.  I’m going to pair them up and eventually roll them into the line up.  I’ve never tried the brand before and really only seen it here so I am curious to see how it performs.

And now we reach the final item.  I chose the Honest Co’s Cream Foundation. I figured I had plenty of skin care so it would be nice to try out.  I love testing out foundations and I do like cream foundations.

Oh what’s that you say, you didn’t see it in the unboxing of products shown above?  That’s because when I opened my box they did not send the Honest Co Foundation, they sent the Item Beauty Bronzer in Cheek Money.

If some of you think this sounds familiar, you apparently have a better memory than IPSY. I received this exact bronzer several months back.  To do a quick recap, the packaging is lovely.  The product is horrible and the lovely compact now resides in my purse so I can use the pretty mirror without worrying about what happens to the poorly performing product.

And I sent a message to customer service.  I am waiting for a reply.  You know it is bad when you contact customer service twice in one month.

Normally I like IPSY.  They are one of my tried and true subscription boxes.  I almost never have any trouble with them. I have had the subscription in one form or another for over four years and not counting this month I’ve had to contact their customer service team three times. 

Once for a broken eyeshadow, once for a broken lipstick and once because my box held four repeat items out of the five in the box. 

All three were positive experiences.  The broken items were replaced asap and upon realizing that most of my box was repeat they apologized and I think gave me points.  I appreciated the apology more than the points to be honest, although points are always nice. I’m hoping my beginning of April e-mail from them was just a one off with someone having a bad day.  As I really do enjoy IPSY I’m willing to shake off one bad month.  The products (baring the Item Beauty Repeat) are all ones I am looking forward to trying out, so it isn’t a bad month, it was just customer service that got under my skin. Despite all of my grousing, it was a decent, if not spectacular month.


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Unboxing the March 2021 Look Fantastic Beauty Box

Look Fantastic is one of those beauty box subscriptions that I look forward to receiving every month.  Of course some months are better than others.  Last month was a truly fantastic month.  In fact I enjoyed it enough that I signed up for an annual membership instead of keeping it month to month. 

The month to month membership is $19 per month.  If you sign up for a year you still pay monthly but the cost drops down to $16.  I thought the box was worth it at $19, I am thrilled to only pay $16.  Oh and if you do sign up for this box (either subscription) the cost is total, there is no shipping charge and if there is tax it is rolled into the cost so it is just a flat $19 or $16. I know before I sign up for a subscription I like to see how it will affect my budget so I run the numbers through before committing, and knowing about tax and shipping helps, so hopefully you find that helpful to.

This month’s box was very interesting actually.  I was actually on the phone with my mother when it came in so I unboxed it while talking to her.  The first Item I took out was the AHAVA Mineral Dead Sea Mud Soap. My mother adores anything AHAVA while I have generally found that my skin likes the products but they aren’t ones that I absolutely love.  She actually tried this bar and unsurprisingly she loved it.  So I will be leaving it unopened and sending it to her in an Easter care package I am sending out.

I will also be sending her the package of First Aid Beauty Facial Radiance pads.  I tried and used an entire jar of them a while back.  I liked them but they weren’t my favorite.  I find I generally prefer the Elemis Dynamic Resurfacing Facial Pads to the First Aid Beauty ones.  She was happy to give them a try as well so into the mail we go.

The rest of the box I am keeping and will use.  The first item that is remaining with me is the Brushworks Eyebrow brush.  In general I dislike dual ended brushes but I make an exception for eyebrow brushes because the spoolie doesn’t get its bristles crushed if it is placed on its end. 

Plus while I have eyebrow brushes I was looking for a thin angled brush I could use with the Eyeko Galactic lid gloss and I think this may actually work.  Since it is an eye brow brush it is thin with stiff bristles so I may try it with that and just play around with the metallic shades. I’ll have to report back once I see how that goes. When I went to look for the individual brush, I couldn’t find it but I did find it as part of a rose gold set that retails for $14.55 on All Beauty. It is a nice looking set actually. The brushes are good quality so if you are looking for a simple set you might want to check it out. It has the brush, spoolie, flat packing brush, and two types of tweezers. Oddly none of the brushes are double ended. They are all single. Personally I rather like the tweezers. I have been looking for a pair of the really fins point ones for a while. I couldn;t find this particular brush on it’s own, but for $14.55 it is a nice set.

There was one makeup item in my box this month and it was the Lottie London AM to PM retractable eyeliner in black. At the moment I have several eyeliners open, some almost used up, so I will wait for a bit before opening it and using it.  I recently tried a Lottie London powder, my first item from the brand. While the powder seemed nice, the holes were almost impossible to get the product out of.  I may doctor the lid just so that I can more fully try the product.  I have no idea what to expect from the liner.  So it will be a surprise when I get around to it. 

I am not entirely certain what to expect from the Polaar IceSource Ultra Moisturizing mask but as everything I have tried from Polaar has been really nice, I expect this will as well.  I am still in the dry skin section of my year so I will be trying this out on Friday to see how it performs.

Likewise I will be testing out the Christophe Robin Regenerating Mask with Rare Prickly Pear seed oil, possibly this Saturday on my usual hair mask night. I am actually very curious to try this mask.  I tired the sea salt mask from the brand but found that my jar had too many large salt crystals to make it through my hair effectively to the scalp. 

My hair was silky soft from the formula but as it was a scalp mask I felt like I was missing out.  I talked to a few friends who also tried the mask at the same time and they didn’t have the same issues.  Their salt crystals were much finer, so I think it was just my jar.  I have secured a second   jar to try out and hope that it has smaller crystals.  Since this isn’t a scalp scrub I just have to see how the formula works with my hair on this one.  As the other formula was good, and I have friends who rave about the brand, I have very high hopes. 

The final item in this months’ box is the Bloom and Blossom Wonder Worker Multitasking balm.  It can be used on the lips or any other skin that is dry.  I usually keep a lip balm on my desk. I recently finished  a Jersey Shore Cosmetics Lip Balm in Lemonade (they are my go too lip balm brand actually) and I recently opened the Bali Balm to try out.  I can already tell you the Bali balm will not be replacing the Jersey Shore Cosmetics in my affections. Since I wash my hands so much I have started keeping hand cream at my desk as well.  The skin around my finger joints has been getting very dry lately. It might be because that’s where the skin bends a lot as well as being overly washed and hit with hand sanitizer.  I don’t know.  However I think I may try keeping this Bloom and Blossom on the desk for a while and see if it does anything for the extra dry bits.

While I am passing along two items unopened, one I have already tried and the other I know will be loved.  I don’t actually mind passing them on I am actually looking forward to trying out the other five items in my bag.  This month isn’t quite as spectacular as last month, but it is still a really good box.  I am looking forward to trying out all of the products.

I was thinking about ordering the Limited edition Mother’s day box from Look Fantastic, but it has already sold out.  The limited edition Easter egg (not to be confused with the Glossy Box Egg) is still available.  It costs $75 with a retail value of over $220.  I went looking and the items look fantastic.  It includes products from <a href="http://<a href="https://www.dpbolvw.net/click-9275903-14361596&quot; target="_top">Shop Erno Laszlo</a>Erno Laszlo, Molton Brown, <a href="http://<a href="https://www.jdoqocy.com/click-9275903-14345400&quot; target="_top">These beauty steals are the prettiest pick-me-ups.</a>Chantecaille and 111Skin.  You can follow the like to see the full details as well as some (if not all) of the products.  I am seriously tempted. I also know I need to make a decision quickly before it sells out.

I’m still kind of bummed about the Mother’s day box being sold out as I was going to send it to my mother.  I might just go with a gift card from The Art of Tea.  I give her the subscription as a gift for her every Christmas and she enjoys it all year and I know she makes a list of her favorites. A gift card will let her pick out some of her favorites, or maybe a new teapot.

She’s kind of funny with teapots actually.  She uses her mother’s brown glazed earthen ware one (even though she now uses and electric kettle to heat the water), but I always catch her eyeing the more modern glass infuser ones when she thinks no one is looking.  I might just go ahead and pick one of those up for her so that she’s saying she is only giving it a try because it was a gift.  I might say that it is for non-caffeinated teas as I am pretty certain that no matter how clean she gets her teapot, it has been used to make black tea for so many years you could probably just add water and leave it over night to find you had tea.

Magically.

But the tale of the magic teapot is for another time.  At the moment I am happy with the contents of this month’s Look Fantastic box and I am thrilled there are even a few items I get to share. This month there was also the first spoiler for next month in the pamphlet and next month subscribers will be receiving the Avant Pink Orchid Subtle Restoring Overnight Serum.  While I didn’t like the eye cream from Avant, most of the other products I’ve tried from them I have really enjoyed.  I haven’t tried this one and am very much looking forward to giving it a go.  In addition, this month’s brochure was really nice as well.  Some months I flip through them and think okay, fine,  This months I really liked the short article on PHAs which I knew nothing about and need to look into more.  Even better was the article about The Eve Appeal and the signs and symptoms of gynecological cancers.  It was well worth reading making the pamphlet inclusion an excellent addition to the box this month.



Ear Fleek July 2019 Review

Ear Fleek July 2019

I know this is my least expensive subscription, But I have to say, it is the one that brings me the most consistent smiles. The basic subscription is $3.49 per month. You can either choose one of three categories (Fun, Minimalist or Boho) or you can go with the anything goes category and be surprised. And all their earrings are nickel free, so no itchy ear, at least for me anyway which is usually my big issue with cheap earrings.

I chose the Anything goes and have so far been happy with that decision. This month’s earrings aren’t ones I would normally choose for myself. In a store I would normally see them, think ‘pretty’ and then keep going.

However once they are on, I kind of like them. They swing with my movements and the rings sometimes jangle a bit in a pleasing way. It is not what I would have chosen, but I also kind of like the fact that they aren’t what I would have chosen. I have a tendency to get into a bit of a rut and will grab the same pair of earrings over and over from my dressing table.

When I get a new pair of earrings I almost feel like I have to wear them. (or if they are really something I wouldn’t wear, pass them on) Letting them sit unworn makes me feel as though I wasted my money, even if it was a low price.

I think it is definitely a good thing to shake myself out of my rut every now and again. And $3.49 is a pretty low cost to do it consistently. Plus it’s always a bit of a surprise. I tend to forget that the earrings are on their way and just get a pleasant surprise when I open my mail box. And pleasant surprises aren’t a bad thing either. I know that Ear Fleek has a premium category now where you can pay $9.93 for a more expensive pair of earrings. I’m sure that is nice too, but I kind of like my lower cost tier. I would pay more attention to $9 going out of my account each month than I would $3 and I think I would judge the earrings more harshly. This is just …fun. Even if I get a pair I don’t like, I just can’t be mad at it.

If you are interested in more particulars I am posting my referral link below. I think I get points if you use it. If you don’t want to use it no problem. Just go to earfleek.com.

Referral Code: https://www.earfleek.com/refer/Valer-ZFJBDCGZ

Jersey Shore Cosmetics Balm Bag

June 2019

I love getting things in the mail. Now that most things are on-line, I find I get more excited when I go to the mailbox and find something within. Seriously, the first thought in my head is ‘I got a present’. Even if it is something I ordered and paid for and know is coming to me.

So it should be no surprise that I am a fan of subscription boxes. I do try to limit them to things I actually use though, which makes getting the package more fun. At least for me anyway.

This one I came across when poking around on cratejoy. It is the Jersey Shore Cosmetics Balm Bag. It is a monthly subscription where subscribers can get lip balms sent to them each month (1 for $2.50, 2 for $5 or 4 for $10).

I use a lot of lip balm. I tend to use lipstick and lip balm as an anti-snacking device, swiping it on instead of grabbing ships of candy, so I keep one on my desk to use throughout the day. I’ve never used this brand before. I’ve heard a lot of good things though so I figured why not give them a try.

I went with the one for $2.50 option. As I subscribed through Cratejoy it was actually $2.33 + tax. The tax brought this subscription up to a grand total of $5.50. As Jersey Shore Cosmetics balms retail for $10 each, I thought it was an okay deal. Since I typically do drug store lip balms I am not sure about the regular price, but the subscription seemed fairly reasonable, so I’ll have to decide if it ends up worth it.

This month’s selection is called Lemonade. It smells exactly like lemonade. It tastes like nothing (which in a lip product is actually a consideration) and it went on smooth and easy. It absorbed really well and isn’t overly greasy. I’ll have to see how it does throughout the month, but at the moment I am really liking it and am certain I will use this up. In addition it adds a light summer scent to my office when I uncap it, offsetting the regular office smells (which at the moment is heavily spiced with the scent of printer ink).

When I went to the company’s page I had a hard time finding the balm subscription so in addition to posting the link to the Jersey Shore Cosmetics site, I’ll post the Cratejoy one below as well. (I’m not any sort of affiliate, I just thought you might want to look for more info in official locations).

Jersey Shore Cosmetics

Cratejoy’s subscription for Jersey Shore Cosmetics Balm Bag Subscription