Glam Up Your Makeup Bag: June Ipsy Glam Bag Review

I was inspired by Kristin’s June Birchbox review to do a review of another one of the many beauty box subscriptions out there these days, the Ipsy Beauty Glam Bag.

The concept is very similar to Birch Box: You pay the monthly $10 subscription and receive a makeup bag filled with 5 beauty products tailored to your profile. Your profile is shaped by a quiz you take when you sign up (and can retake monthly) about your makeup and skincare preferences, and by your feedback on the products you receive in each month’s bag.

 The biggest difference between Birchbox and the Glam Bag is that it comes in a reusable makeup bag every month and the samples are more similar to drug store buys rather than higher-end department store cosmetics (though all have been high quality so far). This is a plus for me since it means the items are actually affordable and I could realistically buy them again if I want to without breaking my wallet.

Photo by Allie Windergerst
Each month has a cute theme; this month’s was “Pretty in Paradise.” Photo by Allie Windergerst

I started my subscription in February 2014, and have been very happy with it. The monthly feedback seems to be shaping my items as far as I can tell.

So far, I’ve received a good range of nail, eye, lip, face, and skincare products, as well as a few hair ones too.  Only two out of the 25ish products I’ve gotten so far are things that I definitely won’t use and plan on giving away, which is pretty impressive to me. Most of the makeup products are full-sized, not samples, and the skin and hair care products have been deluxe sample sized or travel sized.  I feel like it is well worth $10 a month so far, and the June bag more than met my expectations from previous months.

Without further ado, the products I received:

Be a Bombshell | Lash Out Mascara | $15

I’ve only tried this once since I just opened a new mascara the day I got this bag, but based on the test run the brush is nice and it goes on smoothly.  I liked it just as much as any other mascara I’ve tried. I can never really tell the difference between them really since I was blessed with already long lashes, but it seems like it does the job as well as any other. I’ll probably stick with the cheaper drug store brands I’ve been using, but it definitely does the job too. Only downside: It’s not waterproof.  This was a full sized product.

Marc Anthony | Dream Waves Beach Spray | $8.79 full size

The first thing I noticed about this hair styling product was how utterly amazing it smells. It made me wish I had a tropical island to visit in the near future because it smells like a beach paradise. It did not make my hair look like “sexy, tousled beach waves” as the bottle purports. I didn’t notice any difference and I tried it on both wet and dry hair (the bottle recommends either). I don’t have a diffuser, so perhaps that would make a difference, but it definitely did not make my straight hair any less straight, nor would I describe it as “tousled.” I still am totally going keep using it based on how delicious it smells alone and because it has some UV protection and seems slightly moisturizing. But if you’re looking for something to make straight hair look beach-kissed and wavy, this isn’t the one for you. This was a 1.52 oz. sample; the full size is 4.2, but it’s going a long way so far.

NYX | Butter Gloss | $5.00

I am not a big lip gloss fan mainly because I don’t like having to unstick my long hair from my mouth every five minutes, but this one seems pretty nice. It goes on smoothly and doesn’t feel sticky at all. I received the color “Apple Strudel,” which looks a little on the bubble gum pink side in the bottle but goes on pretty muted; there isn’t a whole lot of tint to it. I didn’t feel like it tasted like anything. It doesn’t make your lips feel dry at all, so that’s a plus compared to other options. It will be a good staple to throw on for everyday use. This was also a full sized product.

Jessie’s Girl |Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner | $6.99

 This liner has a super thin brush tip and goes on very smoothly. So far it is staying put far better than the gel liners I usually use, and the color is pretty bold (I received black). This one is good for beginners and pros alike. I’d highly recommend it if you’re a fan of the winged or cat-eye liner look. This was another full sized sample.

Skinn | Olive & Enzyme Cleanser | $24 full size

I’m always tentative to try new skin cleansers because a lot of them wreck my sensitive skin, but I liked this one. It smells great and seems to do the job. It actually removed most of my eye makeup, which is a huge feat considering I don’t use eye makeup remover and generally just leave whatever doesn’t come off when I wash my face as it is and wipe off whatever is still there the next day before I do my makeup again (sorry if you’re reading this and cringing, Mom; I’ll learn someday). The sample I received was 2 oz., and the full is 4 oz., so this was a pretty large sample.

Allie

Fashion Writer at Literally, Darling
Allie graduated from the University of Iowa with a degree in English and Communication Studies. She loves the Midwest despite the freezing winters. She spends a lot of her free time wishfully online shopping and dreaming of a day when she has the budget to afford all the items she places in her virtual carts. She is always in search of a good deal and is a self-proclaimed sale-shopping expert. She loves binge-watching TV shows on Netflix, staying up late immersed in a good book, and eating (especially dessert food).
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