Saturday, December 12, 2015

Krystal Lake Spills the Tea on Ipsy's Glam Bag

I like make up. I like it a lot. Also in my ever-growing list of likes are discounts, packages in the mail, things that smell pretty, and glitter. Yes, I sound like most teenage girls in America, I am well aware! Based on these likes, it shouldn't come as a shock when I say I have a subscription to a make up bag that comes in the mail once a month. Yeah, I did it. I had been itching to sign up for a box full of fun crap to show up at my door, shrouded in mystery until I would receive said box and open it. I looked all over the internet and read reviews before I finally settled on a little make up bag from From there I started my love/hate relationship with the Ipsy Glam Bag.

Now, before I get rolling on the who, what, where, when, and what hells... I just want it to be made clear that I am not going to be reviewing the specific products I was given. No, no, no! There is enough of that crap out there on every make up site ever. What I am doing here is talking about Ipsy and share my experience with the notorious Glam Bag!

I started my journey with Ipsy back in March. There are a few reasons I settled on Ipsy to pop my monthly subscription box cherry. First off, I wanted make up. I can never have enough. Second, I liked the way the site was set up as far as screening for your preferences (I'll come back to this one). Third, it had YouTuber Michelle Phan backing it and that made me want to trust the service. Lastly, it is only $10 a month. That's it. No shipping added (unless you live in Canada), just a flat rate of $10 per month. So let's see... we have a box with a mystery assortment of make up from a mixture of brands as well as an excellent price point, yeah... I signed up that night.

When you decided to sign up with Ipsy you go through a "3 minute quiz" to get a feel for you and help personalize your Glam Bag. There are 13 questions total. They start out with skin type and tone, eye color, and hair type and hair color. PS There is no option apart from "other" if you have more than one color in your hair or something like pink. Next, they start asking about your style and what kinds you are interested in. That's right! You can pick more than one style!!! Like the club look for Saturday nights and a more natural look for the day? Guess what? You can pick both! You can pick every possible style they have if you like, which I thought was awesome! They even ask a second style related question where they show you images of Ipsy Stylists, including Michelle Phan, and ask which ones you could relate to the most based on their make up style. And yes, you can pick more than one! They also ask how comfortable you are with make up and how adventurous you are with it, which I also thought were great questions. Let's be real, if you aren't comfortable with make up just yet, maybe liquid eyeliner isn't a good fit for you just yet. After this, they start asking about what brands you love and would like to try as well as where you normally buy your make up. They also ask what products you normally use or would like to. They get very specific with this and ask, not just about make up, but about skin care, hair care, hair and make up tools, and even fragrance. Like I said, the process is super thorough. Once you go through all of this, you can finally give your info and sign up for real.

One thing about signing up that I did not expect was the wait. When I first signed up in March I got wait listed. They had already shipped the Glam Bag for March and April's subscription had sold out. Damn. However, you do not get charged until you get off the wait list, so I was okay with it. When May rolled around, I got the e-mail saying I was off the wait list and would get my first bag in two weeks. I was excited! Finally!!!! I was getting my first Glam Bag, but it never came. I checked the tracking and it got held up at some warehouse I had never heard of. I contacted customer service and never got a response. I was pissed, but at the same time, it was only $10. This could have been a lot worse. June came about and I got the same e-mail saying my Glam Bag was on the way, and this time it showed up! Since signing up I have received a total of three bags and have another that should arrive within the next week. Like I said, I am not going to review the specific products, but I do have pictures to share as well as my opinion on what I received.

June's Glam Bag contained the following: a small bottle of Formula X Nail Color in Power Source, treStique Mini Shadow Crayon in Kona Coffee, OFRA Eyeliner in Turquoise, Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer .25 fl oz, and Lavanila Laboratories The Healthy Body Butter in Pure Vanilla. I used all of the products and only kept using three of the five. If you've ever met me, that nail color was not my style. At all. Ever.

June's Glam Bag

July's Glam Bag contained the following: Eyetini Swizzle Stick Eyeliner in Blue Hawaiian, Jersey Shore Sun's Mongongo Anti-aging Lip Conditioner in Vanilla Coconut Cream, Bella Pierre Cosmetics Lipstick in P.I.N.K., Jor'el Parker Classico Perfume .30 fl oz, and Tarte's Amazonian Clay Waterproof Bronzer in Park Ave Princess. I tried all the products and still use three of the five.

July's Glam Bag

August's Glam Bag contained the following: Lather's Ultra Mild Face Wash, Doucce Cosmetics Ultra Precision Eye Liner in Black, Hikari Cosmetics Lip Gloss in Salsa, Briogeo Ginseng and Biotin Volumizer Blow Dry Spray in Blossom & Blossom, and City Color Cosmetics HD Powder. I used all of the products and still use four of the five.

August's Glam Bag

Overall, I have liked the majority of the products that have been sent to me. I have found some brands I hadn't tried in the past that I now love and some I wouldn't ever use again. I also had some familiar brands and products that I already liked swing my way as well. Plus, the bags they come in are freaking adorable! On top of the Glam Bags, Ipsy also has special offers for subscribers.

When you log onto the site, there are special offers, giveaways, sneak peeks for your next bag, and ways to earn free stuff. The special offers are all products that you can purchase at a discounted price. I've seen skin care kits go for $25 off and lip stick for $15 off and I'm talking some high end stuff with big names attached. However, you have to hurry to save because these deals sell out fast and or have a time limit. The giveaways kind of piss me off. You enter giveaways by sharing pictures on Instagram and or Facebook while using three specific hashtags that are usually #ipsy #sweepstakes and something specific to the brand of the giveaway. I don't do this because I don't share that kind of crap on-line. I share horror movies and John Waters news because I'm classy. Okay, that's a lie. I did enter a sweepstakes for free stuff from Horror Decor. But I don't want to promote something I've never tried before just to get the product that may or may not be good. Sneak Peeks for your next Glam Bag work in a similar fashion... you have to share that you are getting a Glam Bag on a bunch of social media sources via links on the Ipsy site and then you get to see what is coming your way. Yeah, I don't play that. I'm half embarrassed that I am subscriber to this thing in the first place and the last thing I want to do is brag about it. Plus, I like the mystery factor, so I will never share that I am getting a Glam Bag. Last, but not least, the free stuffz! You earn points on Ipsy for every Glam Bag you get as well as reviews, following them on Instagram, following them on Facebook, subscribing to them on YouTube, and sharing the arrival of your Glam Bag. Once you hit 500 points you can use them to get free stuff like make up and make up brushes. Since I don't like sharing this kind of stuff I have just over 100 points, but I also don't see anything I would want when I check the stuff up for grabs. However, the second they put up something like a make up brush with a spiderweb print, I'm going to be all over that mess! But I'll keep dreaming.

God, I feel long winded! Overall, I am happy with my subscription with Ipsy despite the rocky start with wait listing and missing out on a Glam Bag. The majority of what comes in the mail is a variety of items from deluxe samples to full size products. No little packets of foundation that barely cover half your face. I like the options the site gives you for free stuff if you are willing to go the extra step and give them a shameless plug on social media. Not my bag, but a lot of people do it and don't seem to mind at the chance of winning free stuff. If you are a make up person and are looking for an inexpensive, monthly subscription; Ipsy is not a bad start.

I plan on continuing my subscription at least through the holidays. If you are interested in what I get in the next few Glam Bags, leave me a message in the comments below. Do you have a monthly subscription you would or wouldn't recommend? Share that with us as well! My next monthly subscription post will be after the holidays and will be on Horror Block! I am expecting my first Block in October and I can't wait to share my experience with all of you!

Stay Sweet and Twisted,

Krystal Lake