Ipsy Vs. Birchbox: July 2014

Ladies and gentlemen, behold: a July subscription box review on the last day of July–the epitome of procrastination! (Thank you, thank you. I owe it all to my lack of motivation!) Ahhhh, this is so late I literally almost didn’t write a review because letsbehonest, you’ve probably already seen most of these items reviewed already. BUT in the slim jimmest of chances that you have not seen these July Ipsy or Birchbox items, do I have a review for you!

For those of you that don’t know about Birchbox or Ipsy, they are both beauty subscriptions for $10 a month. Birchbox tends to feature smaller sample sizes that are often more higher end brands and incorporates more of a variety than just beauty. (Lifestyle, skin care, etc)  Ipsy features more full size-luxury size samples of often times more drugstore-lower end brands. Ipsy tends to favor strictly beauty options, but has recently surprised me with some great skincare samples! (I will include my referral links down below!)

And now, TO THE BOXES!

Ipsy: Sensationally Sunkissed

ipsy

 The Products (Sample Values)

bareMinerals 5-in-1 BB Advanced Performance Cream Eyeshadow in Divine Wine 1 ml – $4

Befine Food Skin Care Daily Moisturizer 1.5 fl oz- $10

Hang Ten Dark Tanning Oil 1 fl oz- $1.50

Pixi Beauty Mini Tinted Brilliance Balm in Unique Pink 1.8 g – $5

wHet Nail Polish in Facetious 10 ml (FULL)- $15

Total = $35.50

6I’m gonna be honest, this is the first month of Ipsy where I have received a bag that I wasn’t over the moon for. That said, I did get some pretty good products in some decent sizes none the less. Pictured above are my favorite and least favorite items from this month.

Hang Ten dark tanning oil wins least favorite for this month for the sheer fact that I am not aiming to be the color of an oompa loompa. Tanning oil is not my thing. (My dad however pretty much glistens with it when on the beach…which makes this product even less appealing in my mind’s eye…) In fact, I try to SPF myself whenever possible. This was a total miss for me.

Pixi’s Tinted Brilliance Balm in Unique Pink wins my favorite due to my budding love for the brand and the product delivering on what it promises–hydrating, lovely lips! The color is quite sheer though with the exception of the faintest of pinks and a tad bit of glistening added to my lips. Though I like that in a balm. (And the tingly feel it gives me! Ooo la la!)

I will say this though, Ipsy, please step up your product game. I feel like I’ve seen these brands over and over again in the past 5 bags. Please reach out to the new! I crave variety!

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 That rant said, I did receive at least 2 brands I haven’t had the pleasure of trying before. Be fine and wHet were newcomers to me, though only one of them was a true win. That one being….Be Fine! I loved that it was a daily face moisturizer with spf! I am in such desperate need of it in the summer after beach trips and this one is soooooo light in both formula (kind of milky and very hydrating, but takes a bit to dry) and smell (I feel like it’s more rice/spf smelling than rosemary and pomegranate…but I mean whatever you say Be fine…)

wHet, while it was a decent formula, was not a color I would use very often. Maybe once in a blue (ha, get it?) moon since I’m not much of a dark polish kind of gal.

hand2Last but not least in the bag was surprise, surprise: another repeat brand! (coughcough) Though I can’t be too sarcastically unhappy about it since I am a fan of bareMinerals. Their products are usually the bees knees, but this one left me a little skeptical. I know shadow sticks/creams/and-now-bbcreams are part of a rising trend, but they seem like such an effort to blend. I’m a traditional gal and haven’t really ventured outside of the pressed powder realm, so this was a bit out of my comfort zone… Though, it turned out to be in a good way. A couple of strokes of my finger after applying this Divine Wine bbcream shadow and it turned into what looks like a nice bruise on my hand! Yeah…not the best color in retrospect for me…but it did blend AND it stayed for a long while and took a while to scrub off–so this would be great in the summer heat and even on the beach!


Birchbox: Power Up

birchbox

 The Products (Sample Values)

Harvey Prince Imperial Gardenia – $1

Cynthia Rowley Beauty Eyeliner .8g – $8

Marcelle New Age 8 in 1 Power Serum .24 oz – $5

Naobay Body Radiance Lotion 1 fl oz – $3

Beauty Protector Protect & Treat Hair Mask – $6.50

Total = $23.50

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So, after complaining about it endlessly, I decided to go against my rant/better judgement and resubscribe to Birchbox! What got me: the promise of being able to pick one sample for my box. Ironic outcome: I didn’t resubscribe in time to pick a sample for this box… ah well, next month! (Which conveniently starts tomorrow!)

That said, I LOVED Birchbox this month! They really stepped up their game, but I did get a few repeat brands (just like Ipsy). Luckily, they were two of my favorite brands I found through birchbox. Harvey Prince (of which I have bought Hello of in the past) and Marcelle (of which I bought the golden glow bb cream from birchbox….I wonder if they noticed…). The Harvey Prince Imperial Gardenia made me fall in love with its romantic floral scent (mmmm gardenias)–it’s what I imagine I would wear as Ryan Gosling rows me to the house he built me… (Shhh Eva Mendez, let me have this notebook-esq moment!)

And Marcelle’s 8 in 1 power serum? Smooth as buttah. It literally makes my face as soft as can be and the formula is so light. Also, I’ve had no problems with it concerning break outs. Such a great serum, in my opinion, I’m gonna be FOREVER YOUNGGGGG.

handWhile I didn’t get any full sized items in this box, I was fortunate enough to get two deluxe samples which I feel like is a first in my birchbox history (Of which will be 7 months all together). One lux sample was the Cinthia Rowley eyeliner which went on super smooth and will be perfect for lining my lower lash line (it will totally end up replacing my Urban Decay deluxe pencil I received from Ipsy a couple of bags ago).

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And now my favorite and least favorite!

My favorite goes to… BEAUTY PROTECTOR! Another repeat (I have received the heat protector from this brand in the past), but one I love because their products smell delicious. I’m serious. They’re like frosting scented–I feel like their parent company is Magnolia’s Bakery or something. And the mask color is pink–PINK!! C’mon, that’s so friggin girly cute, I can’t help but love it. And Birchbox graciously provided me with two thimbles full so I can actually make a decision on whether or not I like it from multi-use. (Two thumbs up for two containers, BB!)

Sadly, Naobay was my least favorite of this box–which surprised me since it had the makings of something I thought I would love. Natural & Organic? Check. Cool packaging? Check. Luxury size? Check. What killed it: the smell. No lie, this lotion straight up smelt like Pine Sole to me. Me = not a fan. I want my lotions smelling yummy, not zestfully clean. (Okay, that’s a different brand…but you know what I mean.) Though I don’t blame BB, I thought it would be cool too–it just didn’t meet the smell test. Oh well.

4

Last little perk BB threw in (other than a couple of coups) was a little “power up” booklet full of nice “feel good” suggestions. (I am air quote happy apparently…) It was a cute touch and really pulled in the packaging for BB this month.


Who Won?

Overall, I feel like I have to give it to Birchbox this month. I know–I’m surprised too! But in all honesty, BB provided me with more items I was super into trying (which is what this is all about, right?) and I will end up using more of. PLUS I thought the box was super cute this month. I was a huge fan of the white and pink special box and cute booklet touch. So in the end, I feel like Birchbox is my winner.

What about you guys? Who do you think should win? Or, if you’re a subscriber, what did you think of your box this month??

If you would like to subscribe, here are my referral links:

Ipsy: http://www.ipsy.com/r/1lri

Birchbox: www.birchbox.com/invite/follypops

I’m curious to know what products everyone was loving, so please share! I love getting suggestions on what to try!!

Until next I post, xo

~L

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