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Hey y’all! I have had a pretty decent week so far. How about y’all? Decent until last night, that is. Apologies for no post last night. I had a doctor appointment yesterday afternoon and had to get blood drawn (which is every appointment ugh) and I decided to treat myself to some retail therapy. I got a few things at our local Belk store, which is similar to Macy’s, for those who don’t live in the South. After that, I popped in to see my grandparents for a bit, then to the grocery store. I’ve been having trouble with my truck again and took it back to the repair shop today, so I needed to make sure I had everything I needed, in case they kept my old girl for a while. Well, the grocery trip was the final straw for my body. You’d think, after having this diagnosis for as long as I have, I would realize that my body has significant limits. Maybe I’ll learn one day. When I got home, I was already in a good deal of pain, but I had to get the groceries in and put away. All of my helpers are gone! By the time I finished that, I could barely move. I even fell asleep without taking off my makeup, or changing into my jammies. It was that serious. I feel much better today, though, thankfully! I can’t afford to have too many days like that. I have things to get done and dreams to reach, after all!
My ipsy (affiliate link) bag came today and I thought this would be the perfect day to do a head-to-head with Birchbox (affiliate link).
Birchbox vs ipsy
Let’s start off with this month’s Birchbox. I really like the white and gold box this month. I really wish I could find a use for these boxes. They are so pretty and I really hate tossing them out every month. I don’t give enough gifts that I could justify keeping them, and storage space is at a premium in a 700 sq ft house haha I wish Birchbox was a little more makeup oriented. It seems to favor hair care products, and honestly, I just don’t use products in my hair that often. There are two hair products this month, a shampoo/conditioner and a hair oil:
That being said, these products seem to have been hand-picked for my unique hair issues. The shampoo/conditioner are for brightening blonde hair. The oil is argan oil infused and is supposed to keep frizz under control, as well as protect from UV exposure and heat styling damage. We’ll see how it works for my naturally frizzy hair because I am constantly on the hunt for a product that will actually work. Funny enough, both products kinda of smell the same. It’s kind of floral, kind of fresh. I’ll be able to better figure that out when I use them.
Lip gloss on top, strobing pencil on bottom
Next up are the two makeup products, a strobing pencil from Lord & Berry and a plumping lip gloss from Pixi by Petra. Let’s talk about the strobing pencil first. I’m glad the card that comes in every Birchbox tells you where this should be used and the cheekbones is not one of them. I gasped when I saw how small and sharp the point on this pencil is. They recommend it for the nose, inner eye corner, brow bones and Cupid’s bow. I can definitely see it working some magic in those areas. It’s a beautiful frosty pink, which is my preferred highlight color. Now the lip gloss … if you don’t like peppermint, you will not be a fan of this. The peppermint scent is quite strong, but I imagine that’s where the plumping effect comes in. I haven’t used anything from this brand. If I am not mistaken, it is exclusive to Target, and the closest Target is a thirty minute drive on the highway. I’m also not a huge fan of plumping formulas. My lips are quite nice I think, so it’s never crossed my mind to use them. The color also looks a bit light for me, so I’ll likely have to use it as a lip topper.
Finally, there’s a Frothy Face Wash from Origins. This has a very nice, minty scent, and claims to balance oil production while softening dry areas. Interesting! I’m not really one to play around with my facial cleansers. Once I find something that I like, I stick with it. I am willing to try it out, though. Who knows, I might like it better than philosophy’s purity cleanser!
Alright, alright, alright … ipsy Glambag, come on down! I have been an ipsy subscriber for several months and I have noticed a definite pattern to the bags. There’s always a tool, a mascara and an eyeliner. Without fail. I really do like the brushes we get, and it’ll be ages before I really need to buy an eyeliner, because they tend to be full size haha Let’s talk about that eyeliner.
I have gotten this brand before (Beauty for Real I-Line 24-7 in Champagne Buzz) from ipsy and it’s a pretty good brand. The formula is nice and creamy and it dries pretty quickly. In fact, as soon as I took the pic of the swatch, I immediately went to the bathroom to wash it off, and I had to rub quite hard. Granted, I was only using a wet washcloth, but that’s great, as far as how it will wear, I think. Removal should be easy enough with some eye makeup remover. It doesn’t claim to be waterproof, but I would say it’s definitely water-resistant. Not sure how I will style a champagne colored eyeliner, but I’m sure I’ll have fun figuring it out!
Next up is an angled shader brush from Luxie. This is also a brand that appears in ipsy glambags with some frequency, and that’s okay. These are right decent brushes. This one is rose gold and cruelty free, so it’s pretty much perfect!
Two skin care items were included this month, an egg white cleanser from SKINFOOD and a face cream from The Organic Pharmacy. Let’s jump in with the cleanser first. The Egg White Perfect Pore Cleansing Foam makes some pretty great claims: gentle, but hard-working to remove makeup, dig deep to clean pores, refine the pores and refresh the skin. Sounds great, if it actually does all of those things. We’ll find out soon enough! It has a very light, clean scent, which I like. I tend to be sensitive to smells and sometimes, they can trigger a migraine. I’d rather not have a strong scent all over my face, although, I do like light scents. And for the last skin product of the month, we have the Double Rose Rejuvenating face cream, for glowing, radiant skin. I am a sucker for rose-scents, and this has already garnered my attention. Not only is it rose, it’s double rose! This also caught my attention for another reason. I’ve talked before about having rosacea. One of the difficult aspects of that skin condition is broken capillaries on the face. I have broken capillaries all across my nose and my cheeks. Even with the rosacea under control, I’m left with the redness from them. I would say that laser treatments are the only option, but this product claims to reduce them!! I am quite skeptical of that, but if it works, I will hand over a blank check to The Organic Pharmacy. The scent is also incredible.
And finally, we have Ciaté London’s Wonderwand mascara. It’s an ultra volumizing formula and they swear it doesn’t smudge. We shall see, Ciaté .. we shall see. While we’re discussing mascara, something pretty cool happened regarding last month’s mascara selection from ipsy. I will link to that blog post here. My first impression of that month’s mascara was less than impressed. As usual, I linked the blog post in a tweet and ipsy actually read my blog. They were bummed about my experience with that mascara and wanted to send me another one to try. Of course, I agreed. I wanted to give Make Up For Ever a fair shot, and I am so glad I did! The new tube was nothing like the first one I received. My lashes looked fabulous!! So, huge shout out to ipsy for not only taking the time to read my blog, but to make right the issue I had with a product. That really showed me who you are as a company, and I liked what I saw.
So there it is, friends! What I think I will do, in order to get a real good grasp of the products, is use them as much as possible over the next two weeks, then come back and spill all the tea. I think that’s a more fair method for a head to head with these two services. Which subscription services to y’all subscribe to? What kinds of cool stuff did y’all get? Lemme know! I love hearing about the different stuff that people receive!
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