ipsy vs. Birchbox, October

Monday, November 23

Hip-hip-hooray, it's beauty day!

*This series originally started as I was trying to pick between the two subscription services. Right now, as long as I'm using up what I get, I don't plan to cancel either. And in the process, I'm trying out loads of new products, that I normally wouldn't!*

Check out the whole series right here:
September // August // July // June // May // April // March // February // January // December // November

So here's my glam haul from October:
Birchbox (left to right)
Avenè mask- Not my favorite, as far as face masks go. I like masks that harden or have some texture to them; this felt like lotion that disappeared without a noticeable difference. 
12 Benefits Hair Treatment- Guys, I actually blow-dried and styled my hair (and therefore sampled this product correctly!) I was nervous upon application, because it made my wet hair feel mega greasy; however, I'm pleased to report that after I straightened it, I could absolutely feel a glossy difference I like that this product is called "12 Benefit" - it covers all good hair things, and can be used as a multi-purpose aide. Will definitely use this again!
Eyeko mascara- ALWAYS a standout to receive in a sub, because whose makeup routine doesn't include mascara? This didn't necessarily wow me, but works just fine. 
 Yogini by Harvey Prince-  I may be the only one who enjoys perfume samples- they are too perfect for stashing anywhere for when you may need a pick-me-up (like after the gym!) I'm a fan of Harvey Princes scents, and even purchased Hello after sampling it. This one smells fresher and cleaner in comparison (Hello is a little more sweet- I like them both!)
Smashbox primer- This stuff has been described to me as "liquid gold" by beauty friends alike. So I tried it again, even though I recieved it a few months ago and didn't love it. I used it for Andrea's wedding. I didn't like the texture, and found that it applied/rubbed off almost like dead skin (I know that's gross, sorry, I don't know how else to describe that!) I want to love it! But I don't. Someone send help! Am I using it wrong?

*Favorite of the month!* I have to give it to the mascara, just because I really needed it, it works well, and I've been using it daily. Close runner-up is the hair stuff (and definitely wins in the "most surprising" category!)

It’s not that I don’t love pink or supporting breast cancer- it’s just that compared to amazing boxes past, this one is just whatever.
IMG_5697
ipsy (left to right)
Beauty Without Cruelty lotion- A good sized lotion that’s not too greasy; and I actually enjoy that it’s unscented. I stuck this in my car and put it on during my drive to work every morning, #winterskin.
theBalm Meet Matt(e) Hughes Liquid Lipstick- I’m always excited to get a theBalm product; the shades, products, and branding/packaging are always spot on! This is a pink matte lipgloss/stick. The color is great, and the matte effect is cool, but if ANYONE knows how to keep matte lip stuff from getting weird after a re-apply, please share!
Touch in Sol Gel Brow Pencil in Mink Wink-  I was so ready to slam this product after trying it once, but I gave it another go. Cons- because it’s “gel”, it’s more glossy and less pigmented than a normal pencil. It also wear down SO FAST (I’m talking re-sharpening between brows.) Pros- my brows actually look more natural with this (also has to do with the shade) and it lasts longer than my normal routine! Also the spoolie is great bonus. My brows be unruly.
MicaBeauty Cream Eyeshadow in Bronze- A pretty shade, for sure, but it may be too orange-y. I generally like powdered shadow over crème, in terms of application, staying power, everything really.
Nourish Organic Argan Face Serum- My nighttime beauty routine pretty much solely consists of applying a serum before bed (after washing or whatever.) This was hard to put on, I worried about getting oil all over my pillowcases, hair, etc, and I woke up feeling oily. NOT cute. I like the principle of what they’re trying to do here, but I don’t think I’ll use this again. 

*Favorite of the month* My second trial of the gel brow pen makes it the best product my ipsy harvested in October! Eyebrows are the only thing that matter to me (in life, basically) and trying out a new product made me question the ‘brow groove I’ve been in lately. I’m now totally open to switching to a gel pencil (instead of the normal pencil + powder combo I’ve been using this year.)

Gold- so hot right now! This bag is super cute and on-trend, my only feedback being that I wish both sides were gold (the backside is patent leather, why?)

And the winner is...ipsy- for the simple reason that it had more products that I am interested in, and can use on a more regular basis (lip, shadow, brow.) 


This month marks one full year of this series! I gave up on actually trying to cancel one of the two subscription services months ago, but it has been interesting and helpful for me to keep track of what I've received. In case you're interested, the victories totaled by month are: ipsy- seven, Birchbox- six. So, ipsy barely edging out Birchbox for the win (though, it was very close and it's pretty irrelevant.) 

I've decided to retire this series for now, after a year of comparing & contrasting. What I would like to keep doing is a "spotlight" on anything I receive and LOVE. Mostly in the hope that this encourages me to keep using everything! Another thing I'd like to keep doing monthly:

The round-up of products I've loved and (likely!) lost:
- already seeing the bottom of this NYX eyeshadow palette. It's been a go-to since I got it! 
- This NYX balm lives in my pencil tin at work, and is the perfect subtle color on the go! 
- I've worn this Liptini lipstick several times, even choosing it for Andrea's wedding. If that doesn't make it an MVP, I don't know what would! 
- Just threw this Klorane dry shampoo away after finishing it up. Perfect for traveling, loved trying a tinted version. 

And that's it, for now! Thanks for following along with my ipsy vs. Birchbox series. How'd you do with your subscription services this month? Anyone try one of my products with a different result?

If you are interested in signing up for ipsy OR Birchbox (or both ;) for $10/month, you can find my referral links here: ipsy // Birchbox. View this entire series here

1 comment :

Lauren @ Exploring My Style said...

I can't believe you've been doing this series for a year now! I remember getting excited when you started it. For some reason, I love hearing about new beauty products even though I only use the same products on a daily basis. I tried the Smashbox primer in the green tint which was supposed to counteract against redness. But I don't wear foundation so I'm not sure why the sales lady sold it to me. Luckily I was able to return it. It definitely is a weird texture! You seem to really score with the lip colors! What do you do with all those ipsy bags??