Throughout life, we are posed with difficult questions: Backstreet Boys or Nsync? Dogs or cats? Fresh Prince or Full House?
And in the beauty world, no debate has been as complex as the ever so pressing issue: Birchbox or Ipsy?
Now that I have subscribed to both, I am excited to compare the two and share my thoughts on the products I received in April. It was a pretty good month for both beauty services, but there can only be one winner!
Before jumping right into the products, I wanted to touch on a few things in case you’re unfamiliar with Birchbox and/or Ipsy. They are beauty subscription services that provide you with samples (usually 4-5 items) for $10 a month (free shipping!). The products are supposed to be catered toward your preferences based on the information you provide when you sign up.
For both services, there is a monthly theme. For Ipsy, it was influenced by the musical festivals of the season. For Birchbox, it was all about rainy days – influenced by the saying, “April showers bring May flowers.” (Though I live in Southern California, so that’s not quite the case!)
While Ipsy’s makeup bag is like a free bonus, one thing I enjoy about Birchbox is the information card that overviews the products. It is really helpful, so I just wish the Ipsy glam bag came with one as well.
Now, onto the products! Let’s start with Ipsy.
The most interesting product in my glam bag was probably the City Color mousse eye shadow in White Gold. I’ve never used mousse eye shadow, so the consistency was new to me. It was creamy and blended well. I used just a tiny amount in my inner corners and dabbed some on my cheekbones for highlight. A little bit goes a long way so this will probably last me a while.
Would I purchase? No. I still prefer pressed eyeshadow.
I was super happy to receive Urban Decay’s 24/7 Velvet Glide-On Eye Pencil and even happier it was in black, and not a forrest green or icy blue.
The formula was amazing! The product glided on like butter and it was so pigmented. I have oily eyelids and was certain this would be a hot mess on me, but after five hours it pretty much stayed put! It had only smudged around the outer corners of my eyes. Because this eyeliner is ideal for a smokier look (which I don’t do), I liked using this most as a tightline. And if you do want to smudge this liner, work fast!
Would I purchase? Yes.
Aside from Urban Decay, I was also pleased to see another brand I like in my Ipsy bag. This is Benefit’s lollitint which is a “candy-orchid” color. It can be worn on your lips and cheeks.
Application was tricky. I followed Benefit’s instructions on dotting and blending out the product on my cheeks, but it was far too liquidy and sheer on my skin. I found that it also peeled off my foundation which left me with a huge patch on my face.
If anything, it stained my fingertips more than my cheeks. Bummer. As for my lips, it was still way too sheer. And it tasted awful.
Would I purchase? Absolutely not.
Y’all know I love trying out lip products, so I was happy to receive Cailyn’s tinted lip balm in “Acid Pink.” And I finally realized why the container was shaped that way.
Ta-da! A lip brush. I usually don’t apply my lip products with a brush, but this was very necessary.
Look at that pigmentation! Although this is supposed to be “tinted,” this is that presidential limousine type of tint, if you ask me! This lasted pretty much all day on me and did not bleed. I only touched up after five hours because that’s what I normally do.
Would I purchase? Yes!
Lastly, I got these Kiss lashes in the style “Shy.”‘ I haven’t tried these yet because I haven’t had anywhere special to go, so I didn’t want to waste these in case they weren’t reusable. However, I do like that they came with the glue included and I like that they are more natural looking. Can’t wait to try ’em!
In three months, this was my first time getting food from Birchbox. I know some people don’t like receiving snacks (I think there is a way to cancel that option), but fortunately this was a good experience for me. These were a nice balance of sweet and salty, though I didn’t like the texture much – reminded me of stale granola.
Would I purchase? Maaaybe.
Next up is Davine’s OI All In One Milk which claims to add shine, softness, silkiness, body, and moisture to your hair without weighing it down. I sprayed this on after a shower and although it did leave my fine hair with softness and shine, the smell was just way too strong; it reminded me of Axe body spray. It lingered for two hours and nearly gave me a headache.
Would I purchase? No.
Another reason people tend to shy away from Birchbox is because of the frequent perfume samples they receive. I don’t really mind getting perfume, and there is a way to limit the amount Birchbox sends you. This month, I got Atelier Cologne’s Cherie Blossom and I love it! Very fresh and citrusy and the scent warmed up on my skin the longer I wore it.
Would I purchase? Yes.
If it isn’t already obvious, I have
an obsession an appreciate for nail polish. However, I was disappointed when I received this Color Club polish – not because of the color or the brand, but the finish. It’s a “luxe pearl” which is a frosty kind of finish that I can’t stand on my nails. So much so, I didn’t even want to try this at all. Huge miss.
Would I purchase? No thanks. Luxe pearl = yucks, hurl.
Finally, we have theBalm Cosmetic’s cheek and lip tint in “Pie.” Okay, can we please talk about how cute this little thing is? Love the concept as well. As for the product, it was super smooth and blendable; I could lightly swirl my finger in the pan and it would give me enough color to put on my cheeks. This also didn’t drag on my skin or peel off my foundation, which was impressive for a cream product. Because the color is a little more red than I’m used to wearing as a blush, I preferred this on my lips.
Would I purchase? If it wasn’t part of a palette, maybe.
The Final Verdict:
Overall, I would have to say this month’s winner is Ipsy. I felt like the products were more suited to my personal preferences and they were things I was actually interested in trying/using. I also thought that for $10, Ipsy’s April glam bag had better value; the eyeshadow and tinted lip balm were both full sized items. Also, the Urban Decay liner was an amazing size for a sample. If this month is any indication of how future glam bags will go, I think this will be a long term relationship I have with Ipsy.
How did your Birchbox/Ipsy turn out? Let me know in the comments! Also let me know if you’d like to see more posts like this in the future! :)