Sunday Coffee – Ipsy

IMG_1523Alright. Something entirely non-bookish today. I know my bookish posts – particularly reviews – have skyrocketed lately (more on that in a later post) and I wanted to take a break from that!

Sooooo…remember back in April, when I decided to step out of my comfort zone for “Operation Girly-Girl“? For a month, I dressed “like a traditionally-gendered girl,” in dresses, skirts, and makeup. As someone who is agender and generally fairly gender-neutral in dress, this was difficult. Prior to the project, I rarely wore dresses/skirts, and I’d only worn makeup twice in the last decade. No one was more surprised than me that I became addicted to makeup that month. Who knew?

Now, being addicted doesn’t mean that I know much about it! I still stare with a blank, slightly-terrified expression when I wander into the cosmetics aisle, haha. I’ve bought far too many lipsticks and eye shadows that don’t end up working for me. And I don’t have the money to waste on things that don’t work! I needed a better plan.

08 ipsyEnter Ipsy. For $10/month, I get a bag of five cosmetic samples tailored to my wants/needs. Awesome. I filled out the survey etc in mid-July, and (im)patiently waited for my first subscription to arrive. Which meant waiting until August. A whole month before my little bag arrived, contained in a bright metallic magenta mailing envelop, ha!

Five samples in my first bag: eyeliner, nail polish, a facial mask, lipstick, and a volumizing hair spritz thingy. Fun stuff, and I was eager to dive right into trying everything.

The bad:
– Briogeo Blossom & Bloom Ginseng + Biotin Volumizer: So the hair spritz thingy was not for me. It was meant to be sprayed onto damp hair before blow-drying. I think it’s supposed to keep up the strength of the hair or something. Except I can’t blow-dry my hair. It turns into a puffball if I do, and I break out in split-ends. Nope. I tried spraying it anyway on damp hair, and letting drip-dry like normal, without any other product. It didn’t do anything, and it smelled really abrasive, even after sleeping overnight.

The okay:
IMG_1488– Trust Fund Beauty Nail Polish in Elegantly Wasted: I specifically said I wasn’t interested in nail polish in my quiz, so I’m not sure why they sent this one to me. I don’t wear nail polish. It makes my nails feel heavy and itchy and creepy, and I usually go crazy and forcibly remove the stuff within 20 mins of putting it on. I thought I’d give it a chance, though. It’s not as bad as others I’ve tried. My nails still feel heavy, but I’ve been able to wear it all week without taking it off, and my toenails – painted (literally) for the first time EVER – don’t feel heavy at all. Cool. Notably, I’m not sure how long polish usually lasts, but this one started chipping off my fingernails after about 3-4 days. So I removed it, and it was the easiest to remove I’ve ever experienced. Win.

– Noyah Desert Rose Natural Lipstick: First let me just say that the teeny tiny lipstick that was smaller than my pinky was the most adorable thing ever. Even my boys squealed over how cute it was, haha! The lipstick itself seemed to be a good brand, but the shade was way too pink/spring for my skin. It made me look like a corpse. I’m more of a fall-colored skin-tone person.

The Good:
– JUARA Skincare Turmeric Antioxidant Radiance Facial Mask: I was not expecting this bottle to be quite as tiny as it is. Very little product. I’ve never used a mask before, so I have no idea what they’re supposed to feel like, and I wasn’t sure how much to use. Was it supposed to massage into the skin and become invisible? Or was I supposed to put so much on that it showed? The first time, I tried only a light amount that massaged into the skin. It was tingly and felt good both during and after, but I didn’t notice any difference in my skin. A couple nights later, I used all the rest to make a thick mask (it really only had about two days’ worth!), and it was about the same, maybe a bit more tingly. It felt good. And it didn’t affect my super-sensitive skin in a negative way, yay!

IMG_1486– Skone Cosmetics Luxe Doubler Eye/Lip Pencil in Wine: My favorite of the bunch! I’ve tried this as both lip liner and eyeliner, neither of which I normally wear. The color is perfect for my skin. I’m not sold on this as lip liner – or on the concept of lip liner in general – but I love it as eyeliner and have used it both with a thin outline (like in the pic, though you can’t really see) and as a thicker, bolder stripe when I was playing around (no pic, sorry!). It’s very fun and I would definitely purchase this in the future!

– The bag itself. Silly, I know, but I love this whole vinyl/plastic houndstooth look! And it was fun to find the metallic magenta bag in my mailbox, too – ha!

Overall, I really enjoyed my first experience with Ipsy, and I’m looking forward to September! Hopefully with my comments for “shaping my experience,” my stylist will have an even better idea of what I’m looking for.

PS – If you’re interested in trying Ipsy, I’d love you to use my referral code! I earn points that way, heh.

About Amanda

Agender empty-nester filling my time with cats, books, fitness, and photography. She/they.
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15 Responses to Sunday Coffee – Ipsy

  1. I’m glad you like it. I’ve had a few items not be all I wanted, but it is way better than paying full price for a full sized product and then wasting it. It also pushes me to try new things. I used a wee bit of the lip liner and then a tinted burts bees gloss and it is the most perfect shade of wine-plum lips ever. Never would have thought to even try that before Ipsy. I am so glad you are enjoying it!


  2. Shaina says:

    I would consider Ipsy, but I feel like I need to work through some of my current makeup, ha! Especially the lipsticks…


  3. Trish says:

    As someone who isn’t overly girly, maybe I should try something like this. I wear very basic makeup and the stuff I have is the same stuff I’ve been buying for years and years (mostly because it’s cheap…). I love the look of eyeliner but rarely ever use it. My favorite new discovery is eyebrow pencil. For someone who has NO eyebrows (not due to plucking…they’re just really blonde), this has made a huge difference on my face. Sometimes it’s the only thing I do.

    As for nail polish I NEVER paint my nails because the chipping drives me crazy. Plus I keep my nails insanely short. My toes, however…usually I can make that last for a long time! I had a pedicure (thanks mom) about 6 weeks ago and my toes still look decent (I have trimmed my nails a few times since then but haven’t touched the polish). But once it comes off…it usually stays off until my next pedicure (thanks mom). 🙂

    Keep reporting on what you find! I like the sound of that eyeliner!


    • Amanda says:

      Yeah, I’m not girly either, and many days I don’t bother putting on any makeup. But sometimes I want to play. This seems like a good compromise to avoid spending full price on stuff!


  4. Heather says:

    I’ve been doing Ipsy for about 6 months now and have had both good and terrible luck. Some bags I’ve hated every single thing, other bags I’ve loved every single thing, most have been in the middle. I’ve found that when you do review your items they do a decent job of tailoring the bags to your tastes. For $10 a month, I do think it’s worth it, if nothing more than the fun of having new goodies show up in your mailbox every month! I’m glad you had a good experience with your first one! (I loved the bag itself this month, too!)


    • Amanda says:

      I’ll keep that in mind re: reviewing. I did definitely review all my products this time so hopefully I can have an even better experience in September.


  5. Jennifer Beardsall says:

    That’s so weird, I just signed up for Ipsy yesterday! I really liked the review and I’m glad you are enjoying your experiment with makeup. I am looking forward to getting my first Ipsy bag next month. I also signed up for Birch Box, and I am going to compare the two so I can see which I like better.


  6. Meg says:

    Fun! I was a Birchbox devotee for years and got good stuff there, but I eventually found I was accumulating too much clutter that way — even when passing along samples of items I wasn’t interested in. I’d be willing to try Ipsy for something different!


  7. Michelle says:

    I love Ipsy. I’ve been introduced to so many different products. Some I love. Some I hate. I have actually purchased full-size products based on the samples. It’s a great way to play around with product without investing in a ton of money.


  8. Pingback: Sunday Coffee – Subscription Boxes | The Zen Leaf

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